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Discussion Starter #1
What do you like to use with a q-tip tube? Straight eye, up turned, down? Do you find that you need a hook holder? I've been using a tmc 105 in a size 6 because the eye fits snug in the q-tip tube. I would like to use a larger hook. I'd also like to know what people think about the Loop bottle tubes and what they've been using them for. Thanks for your help.

Mr. Kennedy
 

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Q-tips

I no longer use them for flies. I found that the ones I had purchased started to break down with a little use. I now use the 1/8 inch tubing recommended by Dana and available from your auto supplier.
 

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The LOOP bottle tubes are great, a little pricey but worth it in my somewhat biased opinion. I mostly tie marabou flies on them wirth some hackle out the back. the shape of the tube causes the marabou to flare out spey style. They come in two sizes and the heavier one is about the same weight as a 2"HMH copper tube which is surprising given the LOOP tubes smaller size.

Brian Niska
 

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Mr.K,

I second Ted's findings, Q-tip tubes don't stand up. They are fragile, break easily if hit on a rock (the whole point of tube flies is to be able to replace the hook it blunted or broken) as well, I have found that they shatter if it is below freezing. A further issue I had was the annoying issue of collapsing on the mandrell under the pressure of the tying thread and being very difficult to remove.

All of these issues have been solved by using the 1/8" air-brake tubing that Ted refers to. Dana and I have been using this for at least 4 years and it is great. You can swage it out a little and it will hold most ring eye hooks, Dana prefers this method while I prefer to use a hook holder - except on smaller flies. It is black, which is great as I use it as the body colour on a number of flies. It is cheap, cheap, cheap and is readily avilable in auto supply shops - we buy it in 50' rolls.
 

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a/k/a loophitech
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i just started using Loop tubes and find them easy to tie any kind of marabou fly like whistler mentioned and small intruder style fly like the one posted in the salmon/steelhead fly section ( i think that is the name of that particular section). anyway, i like them because they sink quite easily and are easily tieable.

vinnie
 

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Any particular brand or colour?

Kush,

Any particular brand or colour I should be looking for? Plastic or metal? Do all auto supply shops carry this?

Sorry for these naive questions as tube flies are completely new to me.

Thanks,
Preston

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kush said:
Mr.K,

I second Ted's findings, Q-tip tubes don't stand up. They are fragile, break easily if hit on a rock (the whole point of tube flies is to be able to replace the hook it blunted or broken) as well, I have found that they shatter if it is below freezing. A further issue I had was the annoying issue of collapsing on the mandrell under the pressure of the tying thread and being very difficult to remove.

All of these issues have been solved by using the 1/8" air-brake tubing that Ted refers to. Dana and I have been using this for at least 4 years and it is great. You can swage it out a little and it will hold most ring eye hooks, Dana prefers this method while I prefer to use a hook holder - except on smaller flies. It is black, which is great as I use it as the body colour on a number of flies. It is cheap, cheap, cheap and is readily avilable in auto supply shops - we buy it in 50' rolls.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the heads-up on the q-tips... Luckily I don't clean my ears often enough to have accumulated very many. :hihi:
I'm off to Baxter's for more reasons than I'd like to admit.... stinkin Ford.

Mr. Kennedy
 

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Preston,

It is plastic tubing that is used for air brake lines on trucks. I believe it comes in a couple of colours, however, we always get black as by itself it is a good colour.
 

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another question

thanks K1,
Looking at the Loops and their flared ends, how would you secure them on a vise? I'm thinking of a HMH tube vise. I've seen plastic tubes inserted in the jaw,but the Loops look too big. Hope this makes some sense.

Thanks
 

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Actually the stuff we're using is 1/8" outside diameter.
 

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HMH Cut-To-Length Plastic Tubes

Check out the HMH Cut-To-Length Plastic Tubes in the Saltwater size (1/8") and Freshwater size (1/16"). The C-T-L Plastic Tubes do not collapse or crush under the pressure of tying thread; for only $5.95 you can tie dozens and dozens of tube flies AND support a starving fly fisherman or two.

I no longer use metal tubes, but prefer to use coneheads (where legal) to balance a plastic tube a la Mikael Frodin. HMH also makes Custom Coneheads for the HMH C-T-L Plastic Tubes.
 

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Steelhead are cool!
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Tyler,

Thanks for the correction. I must have some big ass tubing then.

Reely,

I use a 1/16 allen wrench that I cut down for the Loop tubes.
It works great. You can put the flats between the jaws on your vise.
I slide the tube on up to the bend and then put the wrench in the jaws.
The tube is sandwich between the jaws and the bend.
 

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Coming in a bit late in the post but have been having some fun with the Loop tubes recently. The # 1's are quite managable to cast coming in at 7.7 grains or about the same weight as an Alex Jackson 1 1/2 spey hook. The # 2's are 16.9 grains and hit the water like a rock when cast but are effective when you want to drop the fly quick into bouldery troughs.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Very nice. Thanks guys. I like the fact that all the metal is covered up as opposed to a cone-head or lead-eyes. Small, subtle, and it sinks. Great ties.
 

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Kush- would you post tubing item #, etc. (the 1/8" OD)

I don't assume that auto parts stores know what I want, so any specifics you can give would help.

Thanks,
Carl
 

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just one more cast...
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Tubing

Carl,

A source I've used is McMaster-Carr (item# 55495K21) mcmaster.com. Great place for all kinds of 'stuff',,,,,The guys that work on my vehicles save all their wd40 and brake cleaner aerosol tubes for me, I like them a lot for smaller flies.

Cheers,
John
 
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