In the March issue of our magazine FFFT Magnus reviewed great looking pre-cut plastic wings from Reel Wings. Their web site which has videos showing tying in of the Reel Wings and is really worth viewing. It looks terrific material, strong and flexible and easy to tie in.
Magnus mentioned in the passing that:=
“I have yet to see a satisfactory means of combing pre-cut plastic wings with a parachute style”.
There was a point, quite a few years ago now, in my fly tying love affair, when along the way, I tried to do this, time and time again, with Klinkhamer patterns.
Some ideas looked as if they worked, others were disasters.
That in turn led to Mayfly patterns sitting flush in the surface and from there I put together my USD Dun patterns.
If nothing else I did have great fun figuring out how to put the TennisRacket cling film wings and a parachute hackle together. It does work.
The sequence for combining a Parachute Hackle and TennisRacket Cling film Wings is:=
1. Tie in your post material around which you will wind your Parachute Hackle.
The position of the tying in point should be the centre of the finished Thorax.
Tie in your hackle to form your Parachute Hackle as you would normally do.
2. Form your TennisRacketWings and ….centre them on the post and hackle ….and tie them in position.
At this point you run your thread down to the bend, and if you have not already done so, you tie in your tails.
You then use very a very fine dubbing rope…. up to the start of the thorax behind the wings.
3. The key to this method,( which I also use in my USD Duns and Emergers) is, you set the position of the cling film wings …by the way you form the Thorax.
To form the thorax and set the wings (about 10 and 2 o’clock),
you use a very fine dubbing rope (I use Nano silk which gives a very fine rope of dubbing)
and with soft turns you figure of eight between ……and on the outside of …..both wings.
It sounds difficult but it is easy.
One tip is when you figure of eight say from the back to the front …..on the outside of the wing,… when you reach the front ,… take a complete turn around the shank to hold the material across the outside of the wing.
Similarly finish the thorax with a figure of eight between the wings and on the top of the thorax.
It holds it all together nice and tight.
Sorry if it sounds a complicated or involved thing to do but if you try it or were to see it done it really is simply placing soft wraps of dubbing to build up a thorax within which the two cling film wings sit and are fixed at an angle …..without the wings folding in on themselves.
4. Once you made the thorax with the two wings securely in position you simply use your fingers to stroke down the flexible cling film out the way and you the form your parachute hackle, in the normal way.
After that you simply pull the cling film back into the 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock position between the hackle fibres where it will sit in the intended and correct position.
It’s difficult to see in the photo because of the scale, but you end up with a lovely looking Thorax.
I use the combination of the Parachute Hackle and the TennisRacket cling film wings for Mayfly Patterns when I want the tail, body and Thorax to sit IN the Surface film.
So what do you think?
Or is there another way which you combine parachute hackles and pre-cut plastic film wings? .....and could share it with us?