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Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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2008/10/5 10:59
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Silly question but can't find the answer any where, that I can understand....

How do you apply the floatant? Do you apply it everywhere or part x, y, and z on the fly.

One other question, what's the key to success with dry flies (I can catch fish nymphing), they either ignore or "refuse" it.

But they love my thingabobber (I think it's the fish way of say f' u).

Thanks for the info

Posted on: 2009/3/1 10:27


Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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West,

In general you apply floatant to an entire dry fly. There may be specialized situations where you want a fly to be partially submerged any you only apply floatant to a portion of the fly, but I never fish that way.

I'll leave it to others to address your second question more fully. I catch a few on dries, but I do much better with other techniques. I think drag is a bigger issue with dry flies than it is with nymphs, so maybe you need to work on your mending.

Posted on: 2009/3/1 13:46
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Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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I am with alby on this one. Suppose that there could be several methods on applying floatant it but usually the whole fly gets some. Guess I could see just applying the parachute part of the fly.

Some people grease their leaders too. I really have not enough experience with to comment on it though.

Probably think the drift is more important. Avoid the bow in your fly line- mend upcurrent. It is supposed to extend more of a drag free drift. Try to get some curves in your tippet- it extends more drag free presentations. You could look up Harvey's slack leaders on leadercalc for some sample leader ideas.

Anybody out there just use the shaker type of fly drier- like Loon?
Any advantage to this over greasing it up?

Posted on: 2009/3/1 14:00
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Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies
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Quote:

acristickid wrote:
Anybody out there just use the shaker type of fly drier- like Loon?
Any advantage to this over greasing it up?


Powdered Floatant is useful when the fly becomes saturated or when it gets slimed up by a fish. Clean off the slime and shake it in the container to dry it. You can add floatant after the fly is dry.

Posted on: 2009/3/1 16:39


Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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From Apollo
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"But they love my thingabobber (I think it's the fish way of say f' u)."

That's why I went to using a drake as a strike indicator. Doesn't seem to matter which one you use, fish still hit it any time of the year.

Posted on: 2009/3/1 19:01
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Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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2008/5/11 9:50
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Most of the time fish are feeding under the water anyways so if your nymph fishing mostly, then your doin' it right. Occasionally a trout will hit a dry when there is no hatch(higher chances of success with wild brookies) but typically they will ignore the fly completely. It can be very irritating. You need to fish the correct fly(match the hatch) when the matching insects are hatching. An exception to this rule is during summer and fall. During this time terrestrials(ants,beetles,hoppers,etc.) can be fished on top with success at anytime because the real insects fall into the water randomly throughout the day.

Posted on: 2009/3/1 21:54
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Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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While I'm not a purist and I do nymph, I have to admit liking dry fly fishing more, being better at it, and doing it when I feel I have even a reasonable probability of success.

Floatant, generally to the whole fly. I usually use a paste, but been using the powdered stuff (Frog's fanny) more and more. The powdered stuff is especially useful for non-hackled dries. Just put the fly in the little jar, cover the opening with your finger, and shake. Pull the fly out, and blow it off. It's great stuff, my biggest problem is that the cast always works its way off in my pack, and now I have a pasty powder covering everything in my pack....

As far as refusals, we all get em and we always will. The fly and the presentation are the two parts. As far as fly, shape and color are somewhat important, but not nearly as important as size and float characteristics. By that I mean do they want it ON the water(full hackled dry), flush with the surface (spinner or comparadun), or just under the surface (emerger). Size is self-explanatory, get those right and you'll do better. Details like color, shape, number of tails, etc., can help on occasion but isn't nearly as important.

Presentation. Most of the time, they want a perfect drag free drift, starting at some proper distance in front of them till the take. It may look drag free to us, but micro-drag plays a role and you're whole day is in finding ways to minimize it. I don't think you ever really fix this problem. I've worked on it and worked on it, and the final score does get better as you get better. But I get just as many if not more refusals than before. Some of the ones that used to refuse now take, and some of the ones that used to ignore now refuse....

There are situations where they actually want it the other way, they're keyed on movement, a lot of egg-laying caddis situations are like this. At these times a really high floating fly, often referred to as a "skipping" fly, can be deadly when drug across the surface. But work on the drag free drift first, and then think about these situations.

Posted on: 2009/3/2 8:25


Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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I'm no expert but last year I bought Loon Hydrstop and dunked all my dry flies in it before they got wet and they road high for quite a while on stream. Since then I have been messing with gink's and the first guy I see pull gink's out of his pocket on stream will get my bottle no questions asked. Only negative to hydrstop was it did evaporate very quickly even thought I had it sealed in 2 plastic bags.

Posted on: 2009/3/2 10:18
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Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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I never liked using the thick paste type floatants - they always seem to matt the hackle. And you have to fool around, working it in every time you change flies.
I've always used liquid floatants that come in a bottle, just one quick dunk with the fly after tying it on, and off you go.
There is a liquid floatant made by Mucilin that works pretty well for this
However, I read about a homemade fly floatant formula in George Harvey's book. Just mix lighter fluid and mucilin paste.
I've been using this for quite a while now, and it works as well as anyting else I've tried. I carry a small bottle of it in my vest.

As for fishing dries, I've often found it important that they ride high and dry, to be successful

Posted on: 2009/3/2 12:13


Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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Sweet

Thanks for the help guys...

when they refuse the fly (assuming good drift), do u drop size or change fly style next?

Anybody tried a rapala loop to help free up the fly from the line.

Also when u drop rig it, do tie it to bend or tag on the knot. I use to tie it the bend with nymph but flip to the tag (seem to help or maybe my imagination)

Posted on: 2009/3/2 19:15


Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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Quote:

Westvleteren12 wrote:
Sweet

Thanks for the help guys...

when they refuse the fly (assuming good drift), do u drop size or change fly style next?

Anybody tried a rapala loop to help free up the fly from the line.

Also when u drop rig it, do tie it to bend or tag on the knot. I use to tie it the bend with nymph but flip to the tag (seem to help or maybe my imagination)


If your using CDC flies you have to use powder b/c it funks up the CDC. Other dries the gel works good. I usually grease my leader and part of my fly line. I leave 2-3 feet of my end portion of my leader ungreased so it sits in the surface film.

Assuming a good drift they might have been seeing that fly a lot from other anglers. Change the style. Your fly just might not look enough like the naturals. Remember if they rise to the fly a lot of times they deny the fly not your leader. If it's your leader most of the time they won't rise.

I fish dries most of the time downstream to the fish so they see the fly first and not my leader/tippet.

I tie my dropper on the bend of the hook(less tangles). I don't notice too much of a difference. I have caught wild trout this way.

Posted on: 2009/3/9 11:53
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Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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i usually just put a little bit on the bottom...

Posted on: 2009/3/11 0:46
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Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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Thanks....

I try going down a size in leader and xink a couple of feet from the fly

Posted on: 2009/3/11 20:35


Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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From Attitudinally, one mile south of Lake LeBoeuf
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Just generally, on floatant. In my view at any rate:

Less is more... Cover the whole fly, but use it sparingly. This minimizes matting, etc.

The best floatant I ever used both for effectiveness as well as time efficiency when the fish were working was the old Orvis Superfloat, which IIRC, was silicone in a TCE (trichlorethane) solution. But its gone because (I assume) TCE is a known carcinogen. But it worked really well..

Generally, I use either green mucilin paste or something like Aquel from Loon. I think all the silicone products are pretty much the same and the best one to use is the one that's presently in your vest.

I like Frogs Fanny a good deal more than the "shake" products like Top Ride. But the only thing I think either is good for is as a drying agent for a soaked fly. I never put them on an all-dry fly.

I don't know if Gink and Albolene are the same thing, but it works out because I don't use either. Until the day he died, George Gherke swore they were not the same, but then again, there were always lingering questions as to whether George was fully forthcoming all of the time...

One thing I do to decrease fly drying time on the water (I fish rapidly and obsessively and hate wasting time or fadiddling around when I could be casting) is work a little floatant into a corner of the foam pads on my fake amadou (Samadou?) drying thingie that hangs from my zinger. When I catch a fish, I squeeze the fly once between the pads where they are bare and then again in the area with the floatant. It's a 5 second process and although it ain't Superfloat, it works pretty well. And it'll have to do until I learn to calm down when I'm fishing, which to be truthful I hope never happens. I never feel so alive as when I'm working my way up a little creek.

Anyway, that's my 1.5 cents on floatants..

Posted on: 2009/3/18 12:23


Re: Floatant -- how to apply and fishing dry flies

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West-

Typical on this site, you ask for one solution, and we narrow it down to 10.

This is my system: I use frogs fanny powder 90% of the time on my dries. They look a lot more natural, and you will get plenty of floating life between dustings. Dustings are good, because while you do it you are studying the water, not casting, and watching what the fish are doing.

I use Aquel floatant on some flies, such as on the peacock herl body on my beetles. But not on many flies. It gobs them up. CDC flies as mentioned, powder only.

I use mono leaders, and I do nothing to the last 6-10 inches of tippet, I leave it au-natural. I put a dab of Aquel in my fingers and grease the rest of the leader and the first foot or so of the fly line, the tip that tends to sink.

This will give you a good floating rig, and a nice fly.

Next is probably two things. Presentation, presentation, presentation I will count as one. Tippet size is next. According to the water, size of fly, etc. you should be at a minimum of 5x on most streams with any sort of pressure. If fish are feeding and refusing, then six x, then seven x.

Of course you need the right fly. This answer can get really long so I cut it short, but I hope it helps.

JG

Posted on: 2009/3/24 21:45
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