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deer hair poppers

Joined:
2008/5/11 9:50
From Lancaster
Posts: 229
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This has been the first year that I've fly-fished for bass and sunfish. Been using deerhair poppers with sucess, however after so many uses they become saturated and begin to sink. Does anyone else use these, and if so are there any products i can apply to them to prevent sinking?

Posted on: 2008/9/22 8:50


Re: deer hair poppers
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Joined:
2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
Posts: 9195
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bw,
The standard dry fly floatants will help. You can also tie in an "overwing" of closed cell foam and try to keep absorbent or heavy body material to a minimum. Quite frankly, I think deer hair bugs (and floating trout flies like the Letort Cricket) are overrated. They look great in the vise and are a challenge to tie but functionally they're lousy. Eventually, they soak water and are wind resistant. I quit using clipped deer hair years ago. On sinking patterns they are too bouyant and for floating patterns, they start to sink. All my bass bugs and poppers nowadays are made of pre-formed popper heads or closed cell foam. These float all day and cast better as well as making more commotion on the surface.

Posted on: 2008/9/22 9:17


Re: deer hair poppers

Joined:
2006/9/9 21:13
From Apollo
Posts: 294
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Carry several of the same pattern and change them when they get water logged. I've heard of dipping them in water repellant that you use for decks but never tried it. Suppose to keep them floating longer.

Posted on: 2008/9/22 21:30
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Re: deer hair poppers

Joined:
2008/1/21 19:15
From Pittsburgh
Posts: 2723
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If you tie your own, pack the deer hair as tight as you can...makes a big difference in floatability.

Posted on: 2008/9/23 10:54


Re: deer hair poppers

Joined:
2008/6/25 9:41
From Pgh
Posts: 1237
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I place deer hair poppers in the same category as bamboo rods, silk lines and gut leaders. There is a sentimental place for them in the traditional fly angler's repertoire, but certainly not in mine. I've tried them. I don't like them.

I'll stick with cork or foam poppers. They're unsinkable without requiring floatant. And they're durable as hell to boot.

Got to admit though, deer hair poppers are pretty cool to look at. You have to admire the craftsmanship... one of those art forms that is endangered.


rising fish always,
greenghost

Posted on: 2008/9/25 9:02


Re: deer hair poppers

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2006/9/11 13:05
From Lewistown
Posts: 3621
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I'm on the same page as Greenghost.

Posted on: 2008/9/25 9:21
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Re: deer hair poppers
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Joined:
2006/9/13 12:42
From Altoona, PA
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Quote:

David wrote:
If you tie your own, pack the deer hair as tight as you can...makes a big difference in floatability.


I was going to say this too. At the risk of sounding snobbish or something, but there's a huge difference between a well tied deerhair popper and one that just looks OK. If you can really pack deerhair (and it can require a little exertion) one deerhair fly can be fished all day. Of course, I am also of the opinion that they fish better after they've been chewed on a bit. They sit lowered and gurgle more than pop. But you can fish a deerhair popper a long time and get a lot of bass before they begin to sink, if you really pack that hair.

Posted on: 2008/10/5 19:57
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Re: deer hair poppers

Joined:
2007/10/7 0:44
From philadelphia
Posts: 876
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albolene keeps them floating LONG!! i do usually use foam or cork/solid poppers but when i use deer hair i dress it with albolene,a lot cheaper than your typical floatant.

i would imagine bergman's solution(parrafin disolved in kerosene,lamp fuel or naptha)would work too.

i always find it to be funny that a cheap solid popper in crayola colors works as well as a fancy tyed deer hair popper.

Posted on: 2008/10/13 17:55


Re: deer hair poppers

Joined:
2008/3/20 22:15
Posts: 1789
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Switch to elk hair.

Posted on: 2008/11/17 21:32


Re: deer hair poppers

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2008/3/20 22:15
Posts: 1789
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Once you trim any hair you open it up and it will sink. Hair is hollow. You cut off the tip you just left a place for water to enter. If you over pack it you will deflate the the fiber the same as if you stepped on it. It's too tight and it makes it thinner so it won't hold enough air to make it bouyant. If you under pack it when it moves in the water each hair bend and when it does it will expel air and gain water. Deer hair spun bugs are an art and a balance. I couldn't tie one to save my life but then again it may be a long winter and maybe we can talk again in the spring. Don't give up on them the few I used that have that perfect balance were...... Perfect.

Posted on: 2008/12/3 22:28


Re: deer hair poppers

Joined:
2006/10/4 19:47
From Westmoreland Co.
Posts: 36
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A deerhair popper or diver treated with Watershed, RainX, etc will float all day long. Whitlock came up with a method of using a hair drier to double treat deer hair bugs with paste floatant that supposedly floated them all day as well. It's possible though I suspect that Watershed and RainX make it alot easier.

Deer hair bugs are a skill and art that foam can't touch, at least in the vice. On the water, it's a whole different game as the fish don't seem to care. However, the deer hair bass bug goes back in our ff'n history to earlier points than the Quill Gordon. It's an underappreciated creation.

FWIW, I *LOVE* tying deer hair bass bugs. Few flies give me more satisfaction, despite the fact that I very rarely get to fish them. I'm a trout fisherman with a bass bug tying problem......

Posted on: 2008/12/23 19:56
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