Well it happened! I got an e-mail forwarded to me, regarding a Tying
Tip. For the life of me, I could not see how by changing one single word,
I could improve the story. So with no further ado . . . here's Gene. ~ Steven
I just recently stumbled across a device that has made my spinning of
deer hair a joy, rather than a miserable chore that I put off until my boxes
are overflowing with everything but my muddlers, hoppers, crickets, and the
I was surprised when I decided to send my find along to FAOL, and found
that George is leaving. I've truly enjoyed your column, George, and will
miss you sorely. I hope all the beasts of the deep, dark waters charge forth
at you offerings, and that your reels are always smokin'.
Now back to the subject at hand. I've been tying flies, and chasing
trout, for the better part of forty years, now. Which if you'll stop to do a
little math, you'll see I am not one of the kids. One of the things
that some of us old guys get as a bonus for being an old guy, is an annoying
growth of shrubbery from our nostrils and ears.
Other than possibly a bit of extra camouflage, I have never found
this added growth aids a bit in catching trout, so I have chosen to keep this
unwanted landscaping clipped to ground level. Having for years used a small
battery operated trimmer supposedly designed for the purpose. Having a flat
cutter, much like a miniature sheep-shear, I always found it to be unsuited
for the task at hand.
When I found an improved version, with a tiny cylindrical head, I retired
the former machine. Having been a child of parents who had just gone
through the "Great Depression," I was taught to "never throw anything
away . . . you never know when you might need it." So I retired my
mini-clippers to the haven where all small discarded, unwanted gadgets seem
to land, in my fly tying box.
Well! I finally decided the time had come to start with the deer
hair. It isn't the spinning that put me off- it has always been the trimming
and shaping. I hate using razor blades, and scissors have always been
such a chore. Tradition, and function seem to dictate, so when I had the first
Muddler tied and looking like a straw stack in a windy field, I went for the
drawer with the razor knife. There lying beside it was the old ear-hole
The light bulb began to flash above my head, so I figured, "Why not?"
The result was fantastic. That thing is the nearest I've found to perfect,
for the job. The control is marvelous, and with a little practice you can
shape deer hair as perfectly as a really good barber could shape a flat-top.
(It's a fifties thing, ask some old guy.)
Anyway, you can get one of these gadgets in the personal hygiene section
of Wal-Mart, or at some of the drug store chains, for just a few bucks. I
think you'll find it a really worthy addition to your tying gear, and if
you're like me, it'll make losing a deer hair bug a whole lot less traumatic.
~ Gene Dellinger (aka T.G. Grayhackle)
Way to go Gene! Not only is he a satisfied customer, but now he is the
President of the company.
Please check out the Fly Tying Section, in the Bulletin
Board, on FAOL too.
If you have any questions, tips, or techniques; send them along.
Someone else thought up most of this material before we did,
they just forgot to tell anyone about it. Or else we just
forgot about it, while learning something else. Let us
share with each other, all the things we know!
~ Steven H.
McGarthwaite (Chat Room AKA Parnelli)