Kevin sweet
2 months ago

Here’s a shot of my favorite fly I snagged at a garage sale....

Who ever tied these obviously had mastered the woven body (something I’ve tried but failed and not gone back to figure it out).

Maybe this can help date these flies I got?

Steven S
2 months ago

Great fly you found, it looks like a polish woven nymph weave. If you were to google that you will find a lot of history and how to’s on tying these flies. Good luck tying a great and fun fly.

Michael Scarpino
2 months ago

That is a great tie! I’ve tried tying a pattern myself and did google how to like Steven has mentioned. My skills at the time I tried was not where I’m at today. I still don’t know that I will tie a woven pattern. I do know that it looks good in stonefly patterns. This bug looks outstanding.

Bill Trublubug
2 months ago

Hi Kevin. This pattern was sold locally as a hellgrammite imitation although I also think it passed as a stonefly. When it was tied without the clipped hackle at the sides of the abdomen, it was sold locally and seemed to carry the hellgrammite name tag. Semi-popular in the mid to late 60’s. I bought a half dozen at a garage sale two years ago with a tag from Orvis that called them hellgrammites but I’ve no idea when they were tied. A very similar woven pattern was sold at the same time without the clipped hackle at the abdomen as a stonefly imitation. The stonefly pattern had a wider abdomen that gradually tapered from the rear getting fatter as it approached the thorax. The stonefly pattern differed from the hellgrammite in two ways. Stonefly lacked the clipped hackle and also the narrow abdomen section as on this fly. Both were woven using a macrame knot that gave a dark back and a light belly. The criss-cross macrame knot also gives that light color lateral line. Does your your fly have the light color belly? I’m betting this one is the hellgrammite version using the woven nymph technique as suggested by others above.

Bill Trublubug
2 months ago

Forgot to ask. Does this fly seem weighted, especially at the thorax area? It was a typical feature of woven patterns that they had lead wraps that were squeezed in a forceps or pliers to give the flattened profile. Again, I’m speaking of my own local experiences. The fact that the ones I found at the garage sale said “Orvis” might indicate a wider appeal during the timeframe I mentioned.

Kevin sweet
2 months ago

I had a feeling you might have some info Bill. The fly is pretty heavy but not sure if it has the flattened lead underneath. Seems pretty bulky if it was just the woven strings. Belly is a lighter cream color. I thought this pattern was a freestyle from some old timer but it’s cool to know it was used back in the day. Curious if it wasn’t super effective or maybe just too hard to tie! Maybe new materials made it less appealing? I might try and duplicate/update this one. Thanks for all info everyone!

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