Fishing Fly tying

Fly tying: Clipping, cleaning and stacking hair

One of the toughest fly-tying skills for new tiers is using the hair-stacker that comes with the beginner tying kit to actually stack hair for flies like elk-hair caddis, stonefly patterns, Stimulators and the like. I know when I first tried it, I ended up with quite a mess—nothing like the instructional video promised.

Tim Flagler, in the video above, demonstrates exactly how to do it. And you must pay attention to the removal of shorter hairs or soft under-fur—if you leave these in and try to stack the hair, you’ll have the same mess I did. Pay heed to Tim’s final step—tapping the hair stacker at a 45-degree angle to concentrate the hair at the bottom of the stacker. It’s a vital step.

Once you get this down, you’ll be well on your way to tying elk hair and deer hair into your flies, and for summer attractors and terrestrials, there might not be a better ingredient that will help your flies catch fish.

Good luck at the vise.

— Chris Hunt

By Chris Hunt.