Metz Hackle

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Billems

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I haven't owned any Metz capes in over 20 years. Back then, I had trouble wrapping it, as the stems of the feathers were so thick that it made the hackle roll. Very difficult to tie an adams, the most common fly that I tie. My question is for you Metz owners--do the newer capes wrap well? I'm considering a purchase.
 
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EchoRidgeElder

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Interesting! I own a number of older Metz necks and have not experienced that problem with them.

Great strides have been made in genetic hackle.
 
PennKev

PennKev

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I haven't owned any Metz capes in over 20 years. Back then, I had trouble wrapping it, as the stems of the feathers were so thick that it made the hackle roll. Very difficult to tie an adams, the most common fly that I tie. My question is for you Metz owners--do the newer capes wrap well? I'm considering a purchase.
Personally, I would just by one of the various Whiting lines of hackle. I've owned several metz necks of various vintage because that is what my local shop has always had the best inventory of. A few of my necks have been as you described. I have not had that issue with Whiting, or Keough for that matter.

Also, for what it's worth, I have found saddle hackles to be easier to work with than necks. So if you only need a narrow range of sizes, a saddle may be a good choice.
 
Fly-Swatter

Fly-Swatter

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+1

I've been using whiting for many years and have had no issues as you describe. Their saddles are fantastic. Each feather ties multiple flies with ease.

Suggestion: Even a half cape is a ton of feathers for the rec fly tyer. Whiting 100s are a good value and should tie many flies. It's an investment however you cut it, but the 100s allow you to buy many colors and sizes for less money.
 
CRB

CRB

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Whiting is a step up from Metz.
100's tie 100 flies and for @$25 with a good verity of colors.
 
Bamboozle

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I have a LOT of old necks because I use Whiting 100 Packs & Saddles for just about everything. I literally have 100's of 100 Packs because I was buying them before the hair fad when they were often times selling for $10 or less. ;)

In regards to necks, if I handed you top grade necks from my collection from Grade A Chinese or India necks, (pretty much all we had to work with eons ago) through some of the first genetic necks, into Metz Grade 1 from the late 1980's into the early 1990's to today's Whiting Gold or Platinum; you would be amazed at the difference in quality.

I had the pleasure of talking to Bucky Metz some years back and Harry Darbee a LONG time ago about the early days of genetic hackle breeding. It is amazing the strides that have been made and keep being made in genetic hackle.

While I don't buy necks any longer because I never use half of the sizes on one, I wouldn't hesitate to buy a Metz neck if I was shopping. Metz also leaves the shoulder & spade hackle on the cape so you get more usable feathers than you would on a trimmed neck from other hackle breeders.

BTW - Bill Skilton peddles saddle hackle on eBay. I don't know anything about it but I trust Bill so I imagine you can get some decent feathers on the cheap.
 
redietz

redietz

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Metz also leaves the shoulder & spade hackle on the cape so you get more usable feathers than you would on a trimmed neck from other hackle breeders.
Which is exactly why I prefer Metz. I really don't like that Whiting sells necks and tailing material separately.
 
afishinado

afishinado

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I recommend a Whiting 1/2 saddle Bronze. A lot of size variation and superior hackle with consistent barb length with flexible stems that wrap true. I have saddles of each color I need and only buy the 100's for sizes I deplete on the saddle.

 
CRB

CRB

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Any one hear about this?


Collins Hackle Farm:
Thank you.
"For 42 years I've been raising hackle chickens, and enjoying every minute of it. Then, on April 23, 2022 my life changed. Medical issues arose in my family that would require my full attention. No longer would I be able to spend 3-5 hours a day in a chicken barn & still deal with the issues at hand.

What I thought would be one of the hardest decisions I'd ever make became one of the easiest. On April 24, 2022 I walked downstairs, unplugged the incubators, put roughly 2,300 eggs in buckets, and dumped them in the back field. And, just like that, I was done raising hackle chickens--amazingly, without a single regret.

No, I am not out of business yet. I have a huge inventory of capes to sell that should last at least 3-5 years. But, when those are gone, that's it!

I sincerely want to thank each and every one of you that patronized my business. From the tyer who purchased just one cape to those who purchased hundreds over the years, THANK YOU!!!

I hope you will continue doing business with me until my supply is gone.

I've had a good run. Beginning the day I picked up my first birds from Doc Fried in 1979 to the day I unplugged the incubators, I've been totally fascinated by it all. The friends I've made along the way have made the whole journey even more special. So, again, thank you and may God bless you all.

Charlie Collins"
 
redietz

redietz

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Yeah, I've been hearing about it for a week or two. My favorite hackle source. Sorry to see him go, but I wish him well. He deserves it.

On the bright side, I understand that Sideling Hill Hackle got a bunch of his birds, so hopefully the bloodlines will continue.
 
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EchoRidgeElder

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Just saw this message recently myself on Charlie's website. He is a great guy with great feathers. Sorry to see him go, but life is life and I am sure that he made the correct decision. In my simple mind Collins Hackle Farm is an institution.
The message states that he has enough inventory to last 3-5 years.
I am with Redietz above. I hope that Sideling Hill is serious about continuation of the bloodlines as the Collins Hackle Farm "barred" colors are just spectacular.
My $0.02!
 
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