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A tip worth its weight!

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"This idea is so cunning you could pin a tail on it and call it a fox" "This idea is so cunning you could pin a tail on it and call it a fox"

FDG Instructor Dr Paul Davis has a 'cunning plan'. Have you ever looked at your fly box and wondered which of your nymph patterns are weighted and which are unweighted yet look identical?

As I was tying a batch of North country spiders that had wire ribs the other day the following came to me – and although this may be well known by some of you and written about elsewhere I though it was worth of passing on because I have not heard it mentioned before, and, in the words of Blackadder, "this idea is so cunning you could pin a tail on it and call it a fox."

It is easy to spot weighted flies that have bead heads or super heavy lead underbodies (such as Czech nymphs) – however if you tie patterns that can be both unweighted and also moderately weighted with an underbody of wire then it is difficult, if not impossible to tell them apart when you look in your fly box on the bankside.

As depth is one of the critical factors in catching fish how can you then select the correctly weighted version of a fly?

Well I now use the following rule.  If one of my flies is tied unweighted then the rib is tied in clockwise – so if you look at the body of the fly it will look like this -     =/=/=/=/

However if you have put a weighted underbody on the fly then the rib is tied in anticlockwise and the body of the fly will look like this -    =\=\=\=\

This is from my perspective as a right hander but of course if you’re left handed it will be the other way around.

Now at a quick glance it is simple to see which is the heavier fly and appropriate for getting down to the correct feeding depth of the fish.

Paul Davis







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