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I am away to start tying simple black/yellow black/orange tube flies. I used to use bucktail when i last tied flies (a few years ago!).
Can anyone suggest an alternative ?? I need the lenghts to be about 2 1/2 inch maximum with most flies using 1 3/4 inch lenghts.
I also need the orange and yellow to be really bright/fluoro coloured.
I have heard about arctic fox but not sure if this would be suitable.
 

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hairyscotsman said:
I am away to start tying simple black/yellow black/orange tube flies. I used to use bucktail when i last tied flies (a few years ago!).
Can anyone suggest an alternative ?? I need the lenghts to be about 2 1/2 inch maximum with most flies using 1 3/4 inch lenghts.
I also need the orange and yellow to be really bright/fluoro coloured.
I have heard about arctic fox but not sure if this would be suitable.
I'm no expert but used arctic fox to tie up a lot of temple dog tube flies for a recent trip. It took some time to get the hang of it and I'm sure fox is tied in differently for other styles of flies. But for the temple dogs I liked fox a lot. I found it best to leave it on the hide when tying in. I usually broke off tiny bits of the hide with the fur still attached. It was important to be sure I followed the natural curve of the hair in tying it in. Hope that helps.
 

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HS, I still use bucktail for most of my conventional tubes, and I think it's hard to beat for that purpose. I might not use it for very small tubes, where it is a little coarse, but for the sizes of fly you mention it's great.

If you want to tie some templedog-style tubes, arctic fox is certainly the stuff to go for. It's easy to work with and doesn't make a bulky head on the fly. I'm not sure there's any great advantage to be gained by tying conventional style tubes with it, though that's not to say you can't do so, but it really comes into its own with the more upright style of wing. Incidentally, unlike chromedome, I cut the hair off the skin and pull out the shortest underfur before tying it in.

The only other hair I use on anything like a regular basis is goat, which is usually softer and straighter than bucktail (although be aware that it does come in all sorts of textures and lengths). This is particularly suited to tying long-winged flies with a slim, eel-like profile, like the sunray shadow, and you can get it with really long fibres, 6" or more, for large versions of these.

As to sources, although I don't wish to undermine the site sponsors, given your location it makes little sense for you to buy materials from the other side of the Atlantic. Within the UK I find Lakeland is good; they do well dyed bucktails in a range of colours including fluorescent orange and yellow. They also have arctic fox in a range of colours. For fluorescent arctic fox, try Dave Downie - he is also a good source of long goat hair. Google should find their online shops.
 

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hairyscotsman said:
Thanks for all the replies guys.
HS, if you check my gallery under fly photos you will see an example of a tube tied with Arctic Fox. I find Arctic fox to be my hair of choice for tubes, although I've found long, soft squirrel tail fibers to have a good movement n the water as well, but squirrel is slippery stuff and requires alot of thread torque -- and even some cement -- to keep in place.
Cheers,
Daniel
 

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Gardener said:
HS, Incidentally, unlike chromedome, I cut the hair off the skin and pull out the shortest underfur before tying it in.
Hi Gardener,

Before I actually tied the temple dogs, I read quite a bit and yes, the method you use was the main one I saw, and was the first thing I tried. So I got a clump of hair that seemed to be perfectly aligned and tried to make a careful cut. But at some point between either pulling out some under fur, or repositioning the clump in my fingers for actual tie in, hairs would go out of position. Tying in on the hide and then making the clip mostly eliminated the problem. Leaving the under fur in didn't seem to matter. (I don't recall now, but maybe I did remove under fur sticking out, or what I could tease out, around the edge of the clump.) Moreover, I see a trend for even top notch tyers to get away from the original method by the scandinavians of tying the wing in forward, pulling it back, and tying in front to get that desirable forward bulk. I get the feeling these tyers think it too difficult and perhaps unnecessary. Not being a top notch tyer, yet being able to achieve the original method without too much difficulty, came as a pleasant surprise to me.
 

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My TD's are usually a couple of colors of artic fox for the underwing and almost always topped with an over wing layer of Silver fox. Both of these furs have killer movement! The silhouette maintained with the silver fox is superior as a little goes a long way! Jack Cook can help you with the Silver fox at his Irish Angler site.
JJ
 
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