The aim of this blog is to connect fly-tyers all over the world, to share, techniques, patterns, information and knowledge.

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Mutantz video tutorial

 

The Bee’s Knees!

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The feather benders home grown and hand crafted fly tyers wax scull’s.

It’s not that long ago that pre-waxed tying thread was not readily available, and tyers, especially of the more classic stile patterns resorted to various types of wax to make tying more easy and the natural threads such as cotton and silk more durable. Because the majority of tying threads available today are pre-waxed, the practice of waxing your own tying thread has been somewhat neglected or almost forgotten for most fly tyers.

Apart from the obvious advantages as mentioned above, waxing your own thread makes easy work of applying and attaching materials to the hook, creating better friction between thread and material and anchoring them in place with only a couple of wraps of thread. Its also extremely useful when dubbing, if a little is applied to the thread before spinning your dubbing it will render the thread ‘Tacky’ and make the adhering of the dubbing material easier.

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After recently starting keeping bees, primarily for honey production, I have also a surplus of natural bee’s wax which when mixed with three other totally natural ingredients is the recipe for my own exclusive tyers wax. A limited amount of sculls will be available for next to no cost, so if you are interested in obtaining one of these hand made tyers waxes, please contact me on, barrycl@online.no

Woods Torrt Sweden

From April 29th until 1st May I will be tying at Markus Hoffman’s Wood Torrt Fly Tying weekend, ‘Mayflies from Nymph to Spent spinner’ I will be demonstrating techniques with deer and moose hair.

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Moose mane mayfly nymph

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Mayfly emerger.

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Revers deer hair Dun.

If you do get chance to do one of these shows, don’t miss it!

Glasgow Angling Centre

I will be tying on Friday 4th, Saturday 5th and Sunday 6th of March, at the GAC Open Weekend, a great event at the fishing mega store. Check out the website for opening hours, special events and offers.

https://www.fishingmegastore.com/feature-openweekend.html

 

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I will be tying from 08:00 until 17:30 each day and answering questions on dry fly patterns so please pop in for a chat, you’ll find me on the fly tyers row.

 

The Rolls Royce of Hair Stackers?

Recently I have been trying these absolutely fabulous multi hair stackers from Andi Lofflmann in Bavaria. They are not the cheapest hair stackers on the market, but when you get one in your hand you quickly understand why! They are so beautifully made. I have found them very useful when tying many flies of the same pattern, you can prepare the deer hair for four flies at once. Or when you are tying a pattern that requires several bunches of hair, you can stack them all at once.

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Andi’s small and medium multi stackers

I believe they are available in three sizes, S,M,L, and the Price for the small one is 42€ but these are things of beauty and will last you a lifetime!

For orders and more info contact:  andi.loefflmann@t-online.de

 

Friday’s Fly Tying question!

This is a photo I took recently of a not so often fly tying related tool. Does anyone know what it is?

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Stingsild bucktail streamer

 

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Although the recent tendency for tying and designing sea trout flies has gone more towards imitation patterns, some of which are extremely realistic, I am constantly drawn back to some more traditional styles of tying, that never stop producing fish. This is one of them!  This extremely simple pattern is so effective on autumn sea trout that for the past few years at least a couple of dozen have to be tied for my box.  During the summer months the Mickey Finn, another classic buck-tail streamer, is an outstanding pattern on bright sunny days, but falls short when fished in the autumn. I wanted a pattern that would fish as well in the dark grey autumn months, this was the result.

Stingsild Buck-tail streamer

Hook          Mustad S71SS salt water streamer # 4-6  http://mustad.no/catalog/na/product.php?id=193

Thread      Dyneema

Body         Holographic tinsel

Throat    White buck-tail https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/hair-fur/select-bucktails

Underwing   Four strands of gold Gliss n Glow https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/flash/gliss-n-glow

Wing      Light brown buck-tail with darker brown buck-tail over https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/hair-fur/select-bucktails

Topping   Five or six strands of peacock herl

Eyes    Edson brass eyes  http://www.whitetailflytieing.com/

Head    Black  http://www.veniard.com/section154/cellire-head-cement-and-thinners

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1

Insert your salt water streamer hook in the vice with the hook shaft horizontal.

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Run your tying thread along the hook shank until you come to a place between the hook point and barb.

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At the tail of the hook tie in a length of holographic flat tinsel. Unlike salmon and exhibition flies this tinsel body should be uneven, I want to achieve the most reflective multi faceted surface as possible. So the foundation of thread doesn’t have to be flat!

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This is also a fishing fly so strengthen the tinsel body by coating the thread foundation with varnish before you start wrapping the tinsel.

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Wrap the tinsel over the whole length of the body and wipe off any excess varnish that may flow on to the tinsel. tie off.

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Turn your fly up side down and tie in a small bunch of prepared white buck-tail. This should extend about one half of the hook length beyond the hook bend.

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Trim off the excess buck-tail and tie down the butts with a few turns of tying thread.

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Tie in four short lengths of gold Gliss n Glow on top of the hook shank.

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Now clean and stack a small bunch of light brown or tan buck-tail and tie in on top of the Gliss n Glow.

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Repeat stage 9 but with a darker brown buck-tail That extends a little longer than the light brown.

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Cut five or six lengths of peacock herl from just under the eye on a peacock tail feather. Tie these in in one bunch for the topping, again a little longer than the buck-tail wing.

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Take two Edson brass eyes, you can substitute these with jungle cock but the effect is not the same.

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Trim down the brass eyes with wire cutters as shown.

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Secure the eyes one each side of the head with a few turns of tying thread. Before you continue to tie in the eyes apply a drop of varnish to hold everything in place.

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Wrap the head with tying thread and whip finish. Coat the head with black varnish.  Now wet your fingers and soak the entire wing and pull it back to give it shape.

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Once the wing is wet and shaped let it dry, it only takes a few minutes.

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Once dry the wing will hold its shape.

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A batch of Stingsild soon ready for the salt!

Magic Head Flat wing

 

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Magic head flat-wing

An extremely easy yet effective pattern for Bass and salt water sea trout.

The modern flat-wing stile of salt water streamer was developed by the American fly tyer and artist Kenny Abrames. He recommends at these streamers are fished on the drift or with a extremely slow retrieve or a combination of both! When fished in this manner the flat-wing creates the illusion of volume with a rippling swimming movement even if they are so slightly dressed. Its important that have constant contact with your stripping hand and the fly line and let the current and wind take care of presentation. Rhody Flat wing a variant of the original was developed by Bill Peabody, a well know fly tyer from Rhody Island in USA. This pattern was made for stripped bass, but has also proved to be an excellent pattern for many other salt water species two of these are our own sea bass and sea trout. One of the great design features of the modern flat-wing is the tying possibilities to taylor to personal requirement’s for size and materials. But remember they should be lightly dressed, if over dressed they will loose their fantastic swimming qualities.

If you are fishing areas with little or no current you can use a Marc Petitjean Magic Head. The magic head can be used in several different ways. You can fold the head backwards over the streamer head like a silicone fish head. But its when you pull the magic head out over the hook eye like a dog cone collar it becomes a very different fly! This creates a side to side swimming action rather like a wobbler that you wouldn’t believe was possible, before you see it for your self. If not really magic, it has an extremely high attractor factor.

Hook: Mustad S7oSZ, # 8-2http://www.mustad.no/productcatalog/na/product.php?id=191
Head: MP Magic head http://www.petitjean.com/online/fr/magic-head/147-magic-head.html
Tying thread: Dyneema
Tail: White buck-tail, one long olive saddle hackle and five strands of Gliss N Glo https://spiritriver.com/materials/tying-essentials/uv2-tying-materials/uv2-bucktails
Body: Mother of pearl Body braid
Underwing: Gold buck-tail
Overwing: Green, bucktail blandet sammen
Throat: White buck-tail
Topping: Seven or eight long peacock herl fibres
Cheeks: Synthetic Jungle cock

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1
Secure your hook in the vice with the shank horizontal.

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2
Choose the appropriate magic head size for the hook you are using.

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3
Slide the magic head over the hook eye as shown.

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4
If you are using a down eyed hook or have difficulty in getting the magic head over the hook eye, firstly place the points of some scissors into the cone to open the collar a little.

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5
Then reverse the cone while still on the scissors.

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6
Place the cone over the hook point and slide up the hook shank.

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7
Attach your tying thread to the hook shank.

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8
Secure the cone, firstly with a few loose turns of thread and then tighter as you go.

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9
Cut a small bunch of long white buck-tail the one I am using here is Spirit River UV2 buck-tail.

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10
Tie in the buck-tail as shown for the tail.

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11
Select a long olive saddle hackle.

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12
Tie in the saddle hackle on top of the buck-tail.

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13
Select the desired colour of Gliss N Glow.

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14
Tie in a few strands a little longer than the buck-tail.

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15
Cut a short length of body braid.

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16
Tie this in at the tail base and wrap your tying thread forward towards the hook eye.

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17
Wrap the body braid over about 2 thirds of the hook shank and tie off.

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18
Flip the vice over and tie in another small bunch of buck-tail for the throat.

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19
Flip the vice again and tie in the first bunch of gold buck-tail for the wing.

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20
On top of the gold buck-tail tie a little smaller bunch of green buck-tail.

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21
From just under the eye of a peacock tail feather select your peacock herl. Try and tie these in so that they all flow the same way.

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22
For fishing flies I prefer to use synthetic jungle cock, this one from Veniard’s is by far the best I have come across.

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23
Tie one JC each side of the magic head.

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24
Whip finish and varnish the head.

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25
The finished flat wing with a wet profile.

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Tying the Detatched body mayfly

This is a simple but but effective mayfly pattern that fly tyers of any level can tie with a little practice. Once you have masterd this technique all you have to do is change the size and colour to match most mayfly hatches.

The chioce of colours and sizes of fly to be used when tying this pattern is determined by what mayfly you intend to imitate and under what conditions.  In still water fishing, trout can be extremly sellective when feeding on mayflies, they have good time to check them out before sucking them in.

Body form: Upholsterers needle

Hook: Standard dry Mustad 94840 # 16-10

Thread: Dyneema

Tail: Peccary or moose hair

Body: Flyrite dubbing

Wing: CDC fibres

1
Place the upholsterers needle in the vice. You can use a regular straight needle for this if you would like to make a body that lies flat in the surface like a spinner. The upholsterers needle can be bought from most good hardware stores.

2
Apply a little fly tyers wax to the area of the needle that you will use to make the body. This will make removing the body later much easier.

3
Attatch your tying thread and run a foundation of thread the full length of the intended body on the needle. I only use Dyneema tying thread, this is a multi filament thread that if spun in the bobbin anti clockwise will open the filaments and lie flat on the hook shank. If spun clockwise the filaments twist together and reduce the size of the thread down to 16/0. This thread comes in only one colour, white, but can be coloured with waterproof felt pens.

4
Sellect 3 long peccary fibres. I like to use Peccary fibres for the larger mayflies and moose hair for the smaller patterns. Tie in the peccary fibers as shown. Its a good idea to choose fibres that are long enough to run the full length of the body, and then some, this will make it stronger and more durable.

5
The dubbing that I use is flyrite, but you can use any synthetic dubbing that has long fine fibres. The long fibres help you wrap the dubbing around the needle and again make the body strong. If you use a straight needle, once you have tied in the tail fibers you can attatch the dubbing material and remove the needle from the vice. You can now roll the needle between finger and thumb of one hand while you feed on the dubbing with your other hand, this makes super fine and even bodies.

6
Attatch your dubbing to your tying thread and begin at the base of the body. Make sure that the dubbing is applied firm and even but not too tight, this will make it difficult to remove when finished.

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Once you have made a couple of turns of dubbing you can now apply a little glue to the foundation of tying thread Copydex or super glue are best. The wax that you applied earlier will stop it being glued to the needle.

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Now you can dubb the whole body. Make sure that you get the taper correct, and the right size for the speices you aim to imitate.

9
When you have finished your body tie it off at the base and make 2 or 3 half hitch finishing knots. You now place thumb and index finger each side of the body and carefully loosen the body from the needle by rolling it between your fingers and eas it off the needle. You will now see that the dubbing, tying thread and glue have merged into one hollowbody tube, that should have retained it’s shape.

10
Secure your hook in the vise and attatch your tying thread.

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Half way down the hook shank you can now tie on your detached mayfly body.

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Once your body is secure apply a little dubbing on your tying thread, and dubb the rest of the rear of the body. Again make sure that you take your time and get proportions correct.

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Select a good bunch of long cdc fibres and tie these in almost paradun style to form the wing.

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Once the wing is secure proceed with dubbing the rest of the mayfly body.

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When the body is finished taper off the dubbing to form the head.

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Whip finish and remove the tying thread. And there you have it, the finished cdc mayfly.

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Front view.

Klinkhåmer Special

Its been a few days since my last post, so I thought I would get things going again with a truly modern classic, the Klinkhåmer. When I have held fly tying demos and courses for both beginners and advanced tyers there is always some who have questions about tying the Klinkhåmer. So here it is, the correct way, learn and enjoy.

An original Klinkhåmer tied by the man himself, Hans van Klinken.

An original Klinkhåmer tied by the man himself, Hans van Klinken.

Original recipe for the Klinkhåmer:

Hook:   Daiichi 1160, Daiichi 1167 Klinkhåmer hooks size 8-20

Thread:            Uni-thread, 8/0, grey or tan for body

Spiderweb for parachute

Body:    Fly Rite Poly Dubbing any colour of preference or Wapsi Super Fine waterproof dry fly dubbing for smaller patterns

Wing:   One to three strand of white poly-yarn depending of the size and water to fish

Thorax: Three strands of peacock herl

Hackle:             Blue dun, dark dun, light dun, chestnut all in good combination with the body colour.

It was 28 years ago in Norway on the 27th June 1984 that the first Klinkhåmer special was born from the vise of Hans van Klinken, for fishing Grayling in the river Glomma. Now regarded as an absolute standard pattern for all trout and grayling fishing all over the world, and is probably the best and most adaptable emerger ever made.

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Hans says:

I never have seen any pattern that has been spelled wrongly as much as the Klinkhåmer Special. I have no idea why. In Germany they call it the Nordischer Hammer or Klinki. In the States they seem to prefer the Clinck and I often get questions about all kinds of Hammers I have never heard of before. I guess I have seen Pinkhammers, Yellowhammers and even Bluehammers and those are just three out of of many. Of course I can’t deny that I felt really good when the Klinkhåmer Special got so many good reviews but I was most proud about the fact that it was nobody else than Hans de Groot who invented the name. The real name actually was the LT Caddis which was just one fly from my large LT series developed in Scandinavia between 1980-1990. So the Klinkhåmer Special is just a name Hans de Groot and Ton Lindhout came up with, probably after some drinks! Both were also members of our editorial staff of a Dutch fly fishing magazine at that time.

The following step by step is my rendition of this wonderful pattern:

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1

Place your hook in the vice and cover the upper half of the hook shank with regular tying thread.

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2

Cut a length of poly yarn and tie in at the post base as shown. You should leave a rather long length of poly-yarn over the hook eye, as the post, this will give you something to hold on to, when you wind on the parachute hackle later.

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3

Trim the end of the Poly-yarn diagonally, so it will be easier to taper neatly down later for a finer body result.

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4

Tie the  butt of the poly-yarn all the way down into the hook bend to form a fine taper.

Run the tying thread up and down the hook shank to build a proportional tapered body with the tying thread ending at the parachute post base. This is very important to achieve a slim delicate body.

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5

Select and prepare the hackle. Tie the hackle stem in so that the stem creates a little more volume/taper on the upper body. Make sure that you have enough stripped hackle stem to tie to the parachute post later.

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6

When dubbing the body of the klinkhåmer start dubbing your tying thread at the base of the parachute post and run the dubbing tapering down to the bend of the fly and widening in taper as you go up again towards the abdomen.

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7

Run the remaining dubbing in front of the parachute post, this will support the front of the post and also lay a foundation for the thorax.

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8

Tie in three long strands of peacock herl, points first at the rear of the abdomen., this helps the reverse taper of the finished thorax.   Position your tying thread just behind the hook eye.

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9

Wind on the peacock herl to form the abdomen. Make sure that the turns of peacock herl are tight and even. Tie off the peacock herl behind the hook eye and whip finish.

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10

Remove the tying thread and apply a little varnish to the head.

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11

Now, if you have a true rotational vise turn the jaws so the hook rotates until the parachute post and hackle are in a horizontal position. Take the bobbin with the spider thread and attach it to the parachute post base. Tie down the hackle stem into the top of the base. Make a few tight turns of tying thread to brace the base of the post ready to accept the hackle.

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12

Make sure your tying thread is tight into the abdomen end of the parachute post. Now carefully begin winding your hackle from the TOP of the post in tight even turns. Each turn moving closer to the abdomen.

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13

Once the hackle is fully wound, while holding the hackle point in one hand make two turns with tying thread, the first to the right of the hackle point and the second to the left. This will secure the hackle correctly. Now clip away the remaining hackle point and whip finish as shown on the underside of the parachute hackle. When making your last remaining whip finish, just before you tighten the loop and remove the whip finish tool, place a tiny drop of varnish or superglue on the loop before you tighten it into the hackle base. This will secure everything.

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14

All that remains to be done is to cut the parachute post to the required length.

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The Klinkhåmer special as seen from above. The parachute hackle should be evenly spaced around the whole fly.

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