Sunday 29 May 2011

the good ol gurgler meat version

the gartside gurgler needs no introduction , a legendary surface fly that has caught a gazillion fish worldwide , from peacocks in the amazon to sea bass and trout in the UK , and of course largemouth in the states , if i was to take just one fly for top water work in the states this would be it .

has to be said though i didn't even own one of these flies until last may , yes id heard of it it was even on my list of stuff to make and play with , but just never got round to it , so last year when i traveled to see ken at pike adventures in the states he said it was a fly i would need , but don't worry about tying one up as he had plenty (well he did until his box got run over by a BMW that's another story) and around day 3 of my trip we headed out onto the big lake to chase large mouth bass on the surface he gave me one to play with (yes i nicked it at the end of the trip) it is now a very very chewed up gurgler that ken gave me and the thing caught me a pile of largemouths check it out casting into jungle cover bass

me being me i decide that i wanted to sex it up a bit and do a triple whammy give em something to chew on version (pike in mind as well) i also thought that we were missing quite a few fish on these which although apparently this does happen a lot i thought a may be able to shorten the odds a bit by changing the style of hook as have experienced myself first hand the misses i thought a hook with a wider gape may be partway to getting more fish in the boat (ken may well say I'm talking shite) but below is my version of it

OK so you may think threes not a massive amount of difference to kens but I've done a few things different , the hook is a 4/0 sakuma manta (for the wide gape) and I've replaced the feather on the hook shank with some UV chenille from the piketrek chaps , to give it some bulk

i struggled for ages to find the same foam as ken uses and then by a quirk of fate i was about to throw away a child's life jacket that was damaged and thought "mmmmmm life jackets float whats inside them" one pair of scissors later and i found myself with identical foam to kens , and enough to make thousands of gurglers brilliant so surface to say I'm going to be busy at the vice for the next few weeks

from the picture above you can see kens original on the bottom and my version above you may think from looking at the 2 together that there isn't a great deal of difference size wise , well my picture below shows that there is in fact a whole heap extra meaty goodness on my one and that will sure shake em up .

although I'm not going to do them all massive as ken says sometimes they only want small stuff so i will be making some identical ones to kens , well hey who am i to argue with him the brother fishes it almost every weekend and evenings and he likes the meaty version (trust me if he didn't he would say so)

so the fly above has a bit more curve on the back did i design it like that for any reason actually no i just didn't pull the foam tight enough when i tied it , sometimes mistakes work out good this one looks like it will be good

i didn't get a massive amount of tying time yesterday due to having to work but i have some really radical ideas on some additions for this fly so i will be putting these into practice tomorrow as I'm really hoping to get out on the water this week as I'm quite burned out with work (unfortunately i have to work so hard as the bloody flights are well costly) lessened learnt next year I'm going in may when it will be cheaper to fly , but the fishing is so good threes no way I'm not going end of story .................

later brothers and sisters
(a cave in Scotland)

Friday 27 May 2011

the friday fly cook

simple marabou streamer

this is an early tie from way back around 2005 or maybe earlier , a great catching fly very simple to make and made to represent a perch .

hook - 4/0 Aberdeen

thread -clear mono

tail - grizzled hackle

flash - gold (any gold flash will do)

collar - chartreuse marabou feather

the tail section is made up from half a dozen grizzle hackle feathers simple tie in the flash , then tie in the feathers towards the front of the hook then wrap the marabou around the hook shank , tie off and varnish the whipping and that's it .

of course you can do a million and one colour combos and sizes with this fly and it really does catch fish give it a blast

Thursday 26 May 2011

leaving on a jet plane (nearly vt time)

the fly fishing dream team
(or nightmare on Champlain street)

so its that time of year I'm about to book my flights to the USA and do some serious fishing and drinking and generally raising hell with my partners in crime above , you know my wife sees it as me skiving off on holiday but i tell her , its not a holiday I'm going fishing ,if i had bass in this country i wouldn't go dear (outright lie there fellas) she doesn't believe me you know ,but how on earth can i explain the rush i get when a large mouth hits you fly on the surface in crystal clear calm waters , or the expectation that at any moment a fish will come tanking up out of the Lilly pads and crush your fly , how can i possible explain when I'm up a mountain fishing 4 inch deep stream for native brookies on dry flies how on earth can i explain the great time on Brian's porch eating great food from his BBQ and drinking firewater while dodging bugs from hell that are intent on killing you from a great height and speed and the rolling around laughing after the thing puts a dent in the woodwork and misses your head by a few inch's , or lying in a hammock in my brother kens back yard drinking a cold beer and chewing the fat

the brotherhood and comradeship of these guys and the great fishing times we have is what keeps me going back every year ,fellas your the greatest see ya in a month I'm busting to get there already

as some of my close friends know i don't do commercial tying really anymore burnt myself out doing over 3500 in one year was too much , and I'm not a guy who wants to be the big shot know it all I'm better than you fly tier , in fact i was tying flies for pike in this country when nobody else was even thinking about the sport , all i am i a guy that enjoys what he does and is happy to share the knowledge that's that no hidden agendas nothing .

i tie flies for 3 company's and that's it each company gets limited amounts of flies tied by me and i don't get any pressure from any of them , each company get unique flies and flies that catch fish the latest and the last company to get flies made by me is a company near Edinburgh called predator bite now these guys also produce a really superb knotable trace wire called authanic wire i know a few guys who now swear by it for fly fishing , well these guys asked me to produce some flies for there website and i was delighted to do it and I've managed to produce some really serious big but light flies at an very reasonable price and the guys have already caught some some nice fish with them click the pick below to check em out

i love tying flies and developing patterns and i just get a kick out of seeing them on the wheel like the picture above, you just sometimes look at something and you know its going to catch fish , again these are available on from the chaps at predatorbite as an exclusive these would probably work quite well for sea species as well as pike , there is some funky new designs as well that are going to be sure fire fish annoyers

so having tied a massive amount of flies this week I'm going to take a couple days off before i start my next project which again will be something off the cuff but really sexy , and a pattern that I've used on and off for quite a few years but never really talked about a lot because they can be a bit fiddly if you want to change flies but theres a product out there that has made it a lot easier to use these flies , all will be reviled next week .

tomorrow ill be sticking up a new fly for the Friday fly cook so tune in

(a cave in Scotland)

Tuesday 24 May 2011

busy times and twittering

have now scummed and am now on the twitter network I've been looking into it for a while and decided it may be a good place for all those that follow the various website and blogs i do , so when i add new stuff to the sites i will update it on twitter as well as facebook , this way people will be able to keep track from one place either twitter or facebook , it will also update and post on facebook site when i post on here ...... new technology eh click the link below to follow

back to normal fly tying post

busy this last week oh hell yea I've been busy i had a major fly order to finish part of which is in the picture below so that took up a hell of a time as i had to fit it in around work and family i choose not to do many commercial ties these days and i tend to pick and choose very carefully where my work goes , these will be on sale shortly via a website and i will post when there up there .

so i busied myself getting this lot done it was 100 flies which i was supposed to deliver today along with going fishing for the day (rare day off ) so i did them and then realised when i was packing them up that i had actually only tied 90 i had actually miscounted the entire lot , oh bollocks i was supposed to deliver them today and i was working last night so the only thing left to do was to take some stuff to work and tie off the last ten , I'm very lucky to be able to do this at work because I'm usually busy at the start and end of my shifts and nothing in between and the great thing is my bosses don't mind me doing it , so often people will walk in to my office and find the fly wheel going round with assorted flies stuck to it as below last night , the funny thing is i often get to have some great conversations with people about fly fishing .

the box below was to be today's test box sadly with the high winds and devastation suffered over the last few days in Scotland (although nowhere as near as bad as the USA tornado's) the trip today was abandoned so they will have to wait that's the way it goes

new patterns

jack pike ( 8 inch's) epoxy head

belly -yellow body fibre (piketrek)

back- Lindsay's jack pike green gliss and glint plus (deercreek)

hook - sakuma manta extra 6/0 (

eyes - gold 8mm (piketrek)

thread - clear mono

I've also been experimenting with some new colours in gliss and glint plus in fact these colours are so new threes not even a name for them yet , I'm also playing around with using less materials but creating a bigger but lighter fly as you can see things are coming together quite nicely . just wish i could get out and do some fishing .

later folks


Friday 20 May 2011

the friday fly cook


(gliss and glint plus perch)

hook - sakuma manta extra 6/0

body - gliss and glint chartreuse

throat - red angel hair

eyes - gator eyes

large rattle

black and red markers

tied in thin sections hollow tie style as per video here

Wednesday 18 May 2011

new patterns and bloody kids

i tied this the other day and was quite impressed with the finished item , its nothing spectacular just a standard type 6 inch bait fish and in classic red and white and some flash through it courtesy of gliss and glint plus i also did a video step by step for it and my buddy Stevie was round today dropping some stuff of and had watched the video and asked for a quick look , and was pleasantly surprised at how big it actually looked without tying a whole lot of material into it .

Stevie is away down south next week to fish chew and asked for a couple in this and some new colours i have received so every happy to help i have made a start on a few patterns for Stevie pictures once I've done them but there looking good

i made a start on a few of the above pattern and decided that they may well benefit the addition of a rattle I'm a great beliver in rattles for extra sound and attraction so added one and to be honest you would know they were there unless you looked very closely and they have only a negligible effect on the weight of the fly so why not

in the picture above the middle fly doesn't have a rattle and from looking at them you wouldn't really notice unless you shook them , the rattles are tied in just where the red head finishes at the back of the fly , this really is a great easy fly to make and you really don't have to have the skill of a master fly tier to make them in fact the video below shows how easy it is , yea i know I'm not getting any Oscars for my performance but those who know me will realise that's not what I'm about i have no interest in being the big name know it all , i do this simply to spread the word on what is a truly wonderful sport ............enjoy

oh and the video ends a bit abruptly my 4 year old bus mad son came in and started shouting out bus numbers and bus routes , luckily i know his moves so turned it of before he started ahhh children

spread the word and feel free to use my videos on any websites you like please just link back to where you found it .


(a cave in Scotland)

Saturday 14 May 2011

good clean fun and bargains

had an email through facebook yesterday (my profile is pike flies if you want to hook up) lovely chap called Andy , well he had been looking top offload some tying stuff as he was pretty much only doing salmon flies now so had no need for all the synthetics and DNA stuff hooks etc etc and as he was in Edinburgh wanted to see if i was interested , well er yup i was so a couple of emails were exchanged and i meet Andy at haymarket train station this morning to do the exchange and it was great to meet a fellow fly tying enthusiast i just wish i could have stayed and talked longer but i was on my way to work , so thanks again Andy , i did however have the feeling that the CCTV there was probably watching this strange long haired guy handing over cash and receiving plastic carrier bag in return , i was expecting the police to show up and try and bust me . you ever get that even though you completely innocent you cant help feeling what your doing is wrong and the feds are watching waiting to swoop on you for dealing in fly tying stuff .........:-)

eurovison song contest joke "whats blue and cant sing"


OK so I'm not going to get any Oscars for my performance in this video I'm not really into producing hi quality fly tying videos i just stick my digital camera on a small tripod and shoot , the reason i do them is quite simply I'm asked to , and I'm happy to help the video above i did for fellow facebook Friend and fly tier jens from Sweden , who makes some pretty amazing salmon flies , well he has also got some great places to pike fish and he has started to do the odd pike fly as well and pretty good they are as well , so i wanted to give him a bit of a head start on things and knowing Jens he will add his own slant to it as well cant wait to see what he comes up with .

the only down side with doing videos on a camera is your restricted to time and how much memory you have to play with and you can only upload 15 min videos onto youtube so if you want to do longer videos you have to do them in a few parts which is a bit of a pain , so i try to keep them to under 15 Min's if i can , and it took me nearly 3 hours to bloody upload the thing whats all that about ....

trying to beat the clock while fly tying is no easy thing and no doubt ill have to in the future do 2 part videos for more complex flies as although the video is a bit rushed know people did enjoy it , i can rush these kind of flies out dead fast but when you trying to explain things it can slow it down a bit , but hey the finished product is all good and will catch fish

a slightly closer view of the final fly , i like to call these hot heads as the head is always a bit more of a vibrant colour than the rest of the body , will these catch more fish , well hell if i know i just enjoy tying the things and its in colours ive done well on before so i have faith in them and other people have caught on these so alls good

my desk remains suitably nearly tidy after the video , this is my get away space and has fantastic light in the afternoon , i always enjoy my time here .....

on a separate note ken over at pike adventures son kaiden just walloped out his first trophy bass at 18 inch's on a fly rod and he did it all by himself , well done buddy great fish makes it even better when your dad caught nothing

have a great weekend


(a cave in Scotland)

Wednesday 11 May 2011

brokeback baitfish (no not the same as the movie)

evo stick - serious glue
This is a really good all-purpose glue and has a few uses for the fly tier when not using epoxy . It has not failed me on sticking eyes to flies It stays pliant for long enough to get the job in place and you can still re position the eyes after 10 Min's if you wish to , and is fairly strong after a few hours, and totally dependable after 24 hours. Once set, it repels water, and still retains a little pliancy. so it has its a lot of better points than normal super glue which you have to get right pretty much every time due to its instant stick and some super glues have a really annoying white powder that forms and you have to wash off ....

My only criticism after using this product for a few months now (yes one 33g tube) is the tube itself, which after initial use has a top that's a pig to unscrew as the glue goes into a rubber like bung in the top , but what i do is use cocktail sticks to puncture a hole in the top and i still get enough out to do what ever job I'm using it for , if it does get to the stage of being too thick to get out i just get in there with a small pair of long nose pliers very easy to pull the offending blockage out and at around £5.00 UK for american buyers you can get it shipped to you but I'm not sure if you can get it over the pond it may be a different name , but still worth getting


uncle Greg over at pike trek (click the pic above) sent me some of there new samurai hooks which a basically a half circle hook , and i studied it for a while , turned it this way and that mulled a few ideas over before finally committing material to hook , as the shank on these is quite short so obviously not to much space to work with , but as with most new things sometimes i need to think about things for a while to get the best out of them

so having committed material to the hook i thought of a way of creating a bait pattern with a broken back so as you can see in the picture above I've tied the material in from the eye to the back of the short shank , the material as you can see leans on the back of the vice , i do this to make sure if I'm tying a few of the same pattern i get the same length of body every time .

when its not on the back of the vice it hangs down looking like a fish with a broken back obviously a big turn on for predators

after tying in the back all I've done is hollow tie 4 thin clumps of orange around the head (bad lighting sorry) of course you can make this as thick or as thin as you like i like to give em something to chew on sometimes . i will tomorrow do a video for this so stay tuned .

THE CAVE IN FULL PRODUCTION MODE i had a late start in the cave today as i was celebrating the fact that the doctor had told me the lump on my breastbone was actually my bone and the feeling i was having a heart attack for the last 6 weeks was in fact just heartburn caused by stomach acid which foul tasting liquid cleared up pretty much straight away , i should learn to go to the doctors as soon as I'm not right and not leave it .

so after getting back from work i tanked into a bottle of fine red and then finished the wife's white which of course meant i had the head from hell this morning and didn't get cracking in the cave till 1pm which was a real pity as i had the tying head on today and i had to leave for work at 3pm so drinking i am not doing tonight ................

i did manage to get another one done before i left I'm more of a natural colour well it would have been rude not to again another broke back bait fish

fly fishing redneck brother ken capsey over at pike adventures has done a really interesting blog about a flys life in it he shows a fly i tied in his dungeon last may and hes still catching fish on it today go have a read , pike adventures not only a great read but he has some great pictures

Friend and legendary Vermont guide (i swear he is part fish) drew price is also making me sick as a pig by getting into some awesome small mouths actually its just getting me fired yo for my trip in July and sending me to the vice to make even more smaller clousers , anyway check Drew's antics out here dp on the fly again great blog and always a satisfying read

right I'm off to do some video


(a cave in Scotland)

Sunday 8 May 2011

the mother of invention

hell i love tying flies i get sheer pleasure from it and sometimes i get to fish them as well long story but yes i do get out now and again but those with family and work pressures will know how hard that can be sometimes especially with the line of work I'm in so i do get a lot of pleasure from what i do sometimes though necessity is the mother of invention

i was siting thinking the other day that i needed some really big surface baits for pike put didn't want poppers i wanted something that was going to make a lot of noise on the surface so i sat and thought about things i had used in the past and hey presto the gurgler popped into my head i thought OK what if i could have a gurgler head with a big synthetic broken back bait fish behind it hell that would click all the right buttons son i set to work

a 6/0 sakuma manta extra was on the cards for this one because it has a fantastic wide gape on it which i suspected i may have needed for the amount of foam i was going to use this really did have to stay on the top and go nuts , i cut a rectangle of yoga Matt foam (that stuff is cheap and loads of it) and placed half on the hook and bound down with normal sewing thread in red i knew once i got near the head it would pull up gurgler style making that lip that spits the water , having tied it up the lip wasn't quite at the angle that i wanted , but that could be fixed easily at the end of the tie . but i was getting the shape i wanted

the next thing was to get some material on there , i thought at first it may be tricky to hollow tie a load of material behind the foam , but it turned out actually to be no problem as i pulled the fibers back with my fingers well there no way was getting a pen tube over that sucker was there
stepping back and looking at the overall shape i was was more that happy with it

the quick fix to get the angle correct to spit water was quite simple all i did was build up a dam in front of the foam this i found could be made to have any angle you like simple really

adding eyes was a simple affair all i did was a five min epoxy on the back of each eye , i didn't want to do a full epoxy head on this as it would have weighed to much

so the final all singing all surface dancing gurgler bait fish I'm actually very impressed with the thing , I'm not saying Ive designed anything new hear i suspect that the bill fish fly anglers may have designed something similar although Ive not been able to find it through searches be interesting to see if there is anything out there if there is let me know would love to take a look at it

I'm planing doing some video of this in action hopefully next week i suspect it could be quite spectacular

tight lines brothers and sisters of the fluff

(mcfluffchucker )

a cave in Scotland)

Wednesday 4 May 2011

perch perch glorious perch


(and another fine sunny day in Edinburgh)

today was yet another fine sunny and warm day in Edinburgh id risen out of my bed quite early this morning despite going to bed late because i was watching zombie stuff on the TV i should have really been tying flies but i was zonked as Ive been working fairly hard i couldn't even manage a decent conversation with ken when he called yup tiredness is a horrible thing i had all the ideas i wanted to tie in my head but couldn't muster the will power to do anything , it has as well been the hottest April since records began here in Scotland so that takes its toll as well

so this morning i decided to get a few on the hook , i also had to drop my son at nursery so i had a few hours before i picked him up in a couple of hours time , i had promised him to go off to town and check out some buses and go to the bus timetable shop (his version of my orvis) so i set to work on some thing that were floating around in my head

i did quite well on smallies last year on small fish snacks so wanted to improve on the selection i am taking i want flies that look a bit like whats in there lake and what there feeding on , i have a far better idea now after hammering them on bait fish last year so these are the first of the production line

yellow perch

this is a duel edge sword fly as although its small compered to a lot i tie (this is only 4 inch's long) and tied on a gamakatsu sl12 in a 4/0 an incredibly sharp hook and god hook for this kind of tie , this fly I've given a little bit more meat in the way of ep fibre as i want it to be a bit more of a slow sinker the material will help do this and offset the weight of the hook although the hooks don't weigh a lot I'm hoping the smallies Will maybe see this as either a small perch or a black nosed dace but I'm hoping they will just not examine it and just get it down them

perch/ black nose 2

following on the same Principal of they may just hit it because it looks tasty this fly is tied with half the amount of material than the one above it , i want this to fish close to the bottom by tying it more sparsely the weight of the hook will get it down there faster that the other fly i really don't need to test these before i take them over or fish with them because i know from many years experience what these flys will do i spent many many many years on the water experimenting with fibers and hook weights and fly actions , you see a lot of people will chuck a load of feathers on a hook and pronounce it a killer fly before they even put it near water which is crazy i mean imagine making a massive bad ass fly takes you hours to finish you pronounce to the world its the next greatest thing and it has all the action of a brick , get some watercraft fella I'm sure you've all seen this Joe know it all down your local before .

so i managed to get half a dozen of these made before i went to pick son up and we headed of into town to pick up some fabled no 14 bus time tables and a McDonald's (he gets one McDonald's a month before you mail me about all the crap that's in them) its a father and son treat and as you can see by his face he loves a good chip

I've also on the bus to work today thought up a bit of a radical fly to make incorporating the idea of a gurgler its really starting to eat at me as to how t make it and i think i have it sussed out the bummer is I'm not going to be able to do anything about it til Friday when I'm off work , I'm at work writing this just now and ill be getting home around 9.30 pm but then I'm up again at 3 am to come to work and ill be here till midnight tomorrow night as its an election and im working the fecker ...........hey the moneys god and it will pay for the ton of Rosie's jerky ill be buying when i visit ken ............rock n roll baby ...........but hey ill throw that fly around in my head tomorrow and see if i can improve on it and ill do a step by step development in pictures on Friday night

have a great weekend people

Dave Lindsay

(a cave in Scotland

Monday 2 May 2011

pickerel pimping and sub buggin

the time is fast approaching when I'm heading to northern America to fish for heart stopping large mouth bass on the surface big small mouth bass and monster chain pickerel as well as some other very cool species thrown in , OK so the last few month's haven't seen me out fishing much as I'm working like the clappers to pay for it but let me tell you once you do this you'll keep coming back for more its pure fly fishing crack

some I'm starting to get some patterns together in between doing a big fly order , if your doing a lot of flies at once of the same pattern its good to take a break with something different and i needed to tie up a few of the fly above as this was a killer for me on Champlain last year and this pattern caught me my first and biggest pickerel of the trip and man did it hit it , i later lost the fly when a massive bowfin chomped it , but this fly shifts a lot of water and has everything you could want in a fly on the northern lakes where loads of species will hit it a killer pattern for me

i tie these on orvis pike and musky hooks by far the best hook I've found for doing sub bugs yea they ain't cheap but they are perfect for the job you will see from the profile above it certainly looks like a snack , the eyes i use are the plastic cat eyes in black epoxied on with normal 5 min epoxy , this gives the fly the weight that gives it that glide bait action that makes these flys so deadly , and let me just remind the doubters out there this is not a dhalberg diver its a sub bug it glides from side to side and makes a lot of noise on and just under the surface it doesn't dive , i really hope you understand that before you go of on a rant about it being a dhalberg some people FFS they really have nothing better to do

I'm also hitting an out of the way pond with ken that's got some rather tasty pickerel in it so Ive made a few smaller bugs but have added some rattle eyes from piketrek these are tied on 4/0 bass bug hooks from orvis these have a long shank and you can get a sizable amount of hair on them so perfect for what i need I'm also going to do some gurglers on these later this week but my boxes are filling up nicely and i have a clearer idea of what i need from my trip last year

ill also be targetting another favorite species of mine on Champlain the white perch i have a record to break for this one, White&yr=2010 great fun on a 5 wgt a real scrap so I'm just in the process of knocking up a load of wolly bugger type flies for these , smaller flies are not usually my thing but ill improve on the tying after a few so a box full of these will be heading that way as well so all i have to make now is a load of my killer crayfish pattern and im done although i think ill end up with thousands more than ill actually use oh well it good to be prepared

my fishing brother ken is starting to get out and about and sticking some fish he missed out on a huge walleye earlier today on a guess what yup a sub bug check out ken capseys pike adventures for the low down

have fun


(a cave in Scotland)