torsdag 28 februari 2013

Large Dark Olive Dun

Single Plume Tip CDC

Jeremy Lucas style of LDO

          Soon the Large Dark Olive mayfly will appear hatching. Here in Sweden we call it Stor Åslända which is kind of hard to translate. Well it's still Baetis Rhodani we're talking about. The color of it can vary quite a lot not just from water to water but also between female and male. It has a body length of between 7.5-9 mm so it's name LDO is really a fitting description. In UK it will probably appear pretty soon and here it will appear a month or so later.

          The fly I made according to an article in FF & FT some years ago. The tail is two stiff fibers of a cock de leòn feather. Primrose gossamer silk it both the tying thread and the thread base that makes the body of the fly somewhat tapered. Stripped natural peacock quill winded with a little gap between the wraps to enhance the ribbing effect. The body is varnished for durability and then there are two natural CDC tips as wings. The hook I've used is a Tiemco 103 BL one of my favorites since long ago for its sharpness. I should have started with the nymph naturally but well what can I say more than that I like dry flies more than wets. I might post it later on though. So that's it for now. Until the next post ...

Kind regards,
Mats Olsson

tisdag 26 februari 2013

Burnt Wings

Black Midge

          Burnt wings, especially for mayflies, were very popular here in Sweden during the 80'ties. I remember it very vividly since I have quite some of these flies and right beside me now I have the measure of cardboard I made to cut the wings to the right length. The measures range from 7 mm to 22 mm. From Baetis to Danica. Lately I've been experimenting with different plastic materials to burn wings for midges etc. One of the problems I encountered was that the material I used was very hard to color with a permanent marker to make them more natural since the wings of for example midges aren't crystal clear. Finally, like on the fly in the photo above, I could color the wings a little with a blue dun permanent marker. The fly above is the first I use these wings on. It's not what I wished for but I'll keep on with my experiments to see if I can improve the result. Later on I'll present some of the most common mayflies with burnt wings of hen saddle which was the preferred material during the 80'ties. So until the next post ...

Friendly greetings,
Mats Olsson


lördag 23 februari 2013

Pure Silk Glimmer Midge Pupa

Black Glummer Midge Pupa

          At the end of last year I bought three spools of flat silk described as being 16 denier, very thin in other words, and I thought that it would be perfect for tying tiny flies. When the spools arrived I immediately saw that the description was far from correct. The spools were marked 16 sugas (a way to describe very thick flat silk in Asia - sugas means filaments) and to get the size I wanted I would have to separate the thick floss like silk into 16 parts. I did so some time ago by cutting about 1 meter lengths of the silk and separating the filaments after which I joined the parts with a knot after knot and finally spooling it by hand onto Gossamer sized spools. See pictures below of the original spools and the Gossamer sized spools.

          The bobbin to the right is a Ken Newton Midge Bobbin and the one to the right is a Matarelli Midge Bobbin ( a wonderful bobbin to tie with; my all time favorite when it comes to Gossamer silk sized spools of thread ). This is not a procedure I would recommend unless you want to try your patience to the limit. Although it becomes a very cheap thread since you theoretically can get out 960 meters from one of the original spools. I paid like 5 £ or 8 $ for one spool in a special deal. That means that you can get a flat High Quality Flat Silk for tying midges for approximately half the money you would have to spend to get the same amount of UNI-Thread Trico 17/0. That's just when it comes to money because it takes quite some time to prepare the silk for this kind of purpose. But as I reckon every passionate fly fisher and fly tier counts all the time spent in preparing materials for fly tying as well as time spent fishing with the flies as well spent time it's OK.

Red Glimmer Midge Pupa

          Well the only thing left to mention is the material for the thorax of the flies. I've used herl from a tail feather of a magpie for that purpose since it's perfect in size. I think that it's all for now so until next post ...

Kind regards,
Mats Olsson


torsdag 21 februari 2013


Imitation Of A Black Midge

          I'm currently writing an article about detached or extended bodies on a variety of insects of interest for the fly fisher. I'll be trying to cover as many techniques as possible in this field in this article. I'm fine tuning a method of my own to make slim extended or detached bodies for midges and small mayflies. As seen in the photo above. This picture shows partly a 40 year old endeavor of mine. This is an imitation of a midge but like 40 years ago I read about how irresistible an imitation of the house fly would be for the trout. I don't remember where I read it or the author of it but he (or she) surely convinced me of the excellence of such a fly.

          In those days I was occupied with a variety of interests or hobbies. One of them was chemistry. So I remember trying to make materials to use for tying a housefly. Well I didn't succeed in this endeavor but now about 40 years later I made this midge imitation and remembered the frustration not to be able to tie a good imitation of a housefly. Now I have learned the techniques to make a pretty good job. The interesting is that I was on the right track 40 years ago when, from first making the material to use was trying to achieve my goal, to tie an imitation of a housefly. Now a similar product that I made, but didn't have the skill to use correctly, is sold quite expensively but useful. Funny how the mind works and connects things that can be very distant in time but close in its nature. Anyway I'm trying out different techniques and will probably post some of them in this blog.

          In this picture the same fly, with a total body length of 7 mm, is seen from the side in the vice. Since I'm not giving the publisher of the fly fishing magazine all the rights to the article, I've put the copyright notice there in the photos from the beginning, if you wonder about that. Well that kind of concludes an about 40 year long endeavor at least in the theory. I haven't tied an imitation of a housefly yet. But who knows ... maybe later on. Until the next post ...

Kind greetings,
Mats Olsson


måndag 18 februari 2013

Flies Received In My Fly Swap In January

Flies From The Fly Swap

          Here I present some of the flies that I received in the fly swap I arranged in January. First out in the picture above we have some interesting spent spinners tied in a quite special manner. The hook used is a new thing to me. It's a Gamakatsu C16-B called "Crippled Emerger". It was really interesting to see the shape of the hook that can be found on the web site of Gamakatsu. This hook opens up the possibility to tie a range of very special flies. I'll put a link to those hooks below since I think they're well worth taking a peak at of any curious fly tier.  I'll certainly try to get hold of some and give them a try and see what comes out.

          From another fly tier I got this selection of different flies. I guess some of them are quite known to many. A row of Picket Pin followed by The Bomber in trout size, an orange head fly and last a small caddis fly. All of these flies looks to me that they will get attention from some trout when used. I have them in my "Guest fly box" for inspiration in my own fly tying. It's always interesting to see what flies other fly fishermen (and women) are using in this sport we have in common. I hope that this little post will give some inspiration to whoever takes a peak at it as it has been for me. Also want to take this opportunity to give a thanks to those who took part in this fly swap (not all flies have arrived yet; the postal service taking a shortcut over South America passing Asia before getting to Europe and finding little Sweden and arriving) I really appreciate that and will probably arrange another fly swap later on. Well that concludes this post so until next time ...

Many greetings,
Mats Olsson


fredag 8 februari 2013



          Grey Midge with a slim detached body and CDC Wing tied on a TMC 2488 size #26. Used CDC to the wing trying to imitate the fluttering of the wings of recently hatched midges drying their wings. A little wind and the wing will seem to be alive ( I hope ).

          This picture shows that the wing is quite dense and made up of a lot of CDC fibers. I think that will make the fly all the more irresistible for the trout and grayling. Just a more or less educated guess until I get the chance to actually test it. Next comes a lovely video clip of a hatching midge (Chironomid). I found it quite interesting and want to share it with anyone that takes the time to look at my blog. Enjoy!!!

          After seeing that video clip I naturally had to make a red midge. Since the hatching midge was moving the wings very fast I chose CDC as wing material just like the midge imitation shown above. So I came up with this one.

          This midge is somewhat smaller tied on a Gamakatsu C12-BM barbless hook size #30. Well that kind of concludes this post so until the next one ...

Kind Regards,
Mats Olsson

tisdag 5 februari 2013



          This fly is made with a very slim detachable body and the wings are burnt from small pieces of plastic. The detachable body is made with a new technique I'm developing. I've contacted a fly fishing magazine and they want me to write an article about this method. First I want to try this type of flies so it won't be published until spring or early summer. I'ts kind of hard to try out a fly when everything outside is frozen. I guess you catch my drift. The hook is a Gamakatsu C12-BM barbless midge hook size #30. Really a wonderful hook! When the article has been published I'll post a description of the technique in this blog.

          Here is a picture of the same fly from above and in my eyes it looks pretty realistic. It's supposed to imitate an adult midge. Hopefully the trout and grayling will like them. Until next post ...

Kind regards,
Mats Olsson