Tying a wet fly made easy


Many flies are taken by trout and other fish for a variety of sub surface foods. They are always effective, especially when caddis pupa abound. They are both easy to fish and easy to tie.

Lead wing coachman

The Lead wing Coachman along with the Gold Ribbed Hare’s Ear, is one of the ten most popular wet fly used in the country today. The pattern description reads as follows:


HOOK:-----------wet fly Hook
BODY:-----------Peacock herl
WING:-----------Mallard wing quill

Affix a wet fly hook in your vise and spiral some thread onto the shank terminating at the bend.


Take out your peacock herl and hold it in front of you.Cut two or three herl.Fly Fishing ''Fly Tying Basics'' Instructional Video - DVDTie two or three herl to the shank of the hook. Now lash them along the shank of the hook till the butt ends almost reach the eye.Grasp one of the fibers and wind it to the thread in connecting turns. Tie it down with the thread and clip the excess.

With your bobbin, spiral your thread to the bend through the just wound peacock herl and back to its starting point. What you have just done is cress cross the first peacock fiber to firmly secure it.

Now grasp the second peacock strand and also in connecting turns, wind it to the thread.

Again clip the excess after you have tied it down.The reason for this particular method of framing a peacock herl body is to insure having a body left if a trout should sever the outer strand of herl. Some tiers twist their peacock herl in with their thread and then wind it. This also makes for durability but destroys the action of the individual herl fibers.


On most wet fly the hackle is wound as a collar slanting rearward toward the bend. This is best accomplished by tying the hackle to the shank at the tip end…not the butt end, as you would do with a dry fly.

Pick one of the brown hackles . The radius of the hackle fibers should be such length that when tied in, they will reach the point of the hook. (After a wet fly or two, you will know which size hook to use.)

Hold the hackle by the tip with your right thumb and forefinger and stroke the fibers downward so that they stand out at right angles to the stem.

From a point about one half inch down from the tip, try to fold the fibers against each other…dull side to dull side. This is not Fly Fishing Instructional Knots Video - DVDas easy as it sounds, however, if you can at least get a semblance of a folded hackle, it will help.

The area between the tip of the hackle and where you started to fold the fibers downward is the point at which you want to tie the feather to the shank of the hook.

Place the feather against the shank of the hook so that the separation area (between tip and folded hackle) lies just where the peacock herl body ends. The tip of the feather should slant diagonally downwards past the eye of the hook. Tie the feather in with two turns of thread. Clip the tip of the feather just behind the eye of the hook.

Cover the remaining tip of feather with thread to secure it. (If you don’t fasten it securely, it will pull out as you make your hackle turns.)

Bring your thread back to the original separation point where you first tied in the feather. Grip the butt end of the hackle feather, just tied in, with a pair of hackle pliers.

In turns going away from you, wind the hackle around the shank of the hook. As you do so, stroke the fibers of the hackle with your left thumb and forefinger so that they lie rearward.

You will need 3 or 4 turns of hackle around the hook shank. Each Dubbing Wax for Fly Tyingturn should be made in front of the other, progressing toward the eye. Do not tie the hackle over itself. This will restrict the action of the fibers.

As you make each turn, keep stroking the fibers rearward. Done properly, you will see that they fall very neatly in place.

When the required turns have been made, tie the hackle stem down with your thread and clip the excess. Cover any exposed parts with a turn or two of thread.


The wing of the Lead wing Coachman is made from a matching pair of slate mallard wing quill sections. In order for the sections to match, one must come from a left wing quill and one from a right. The width of the section for a size 10 wet fly should be approximately 1/8 “ wide.

From a pair of duck quills, cut such a section from each of the feathers. Incidentally, the part of the feather that makes the best matching sections is usually in the center of the quill. Those near the tip are too stiff and the very lower portion too soft.

The quill sections must be tied to the hook shank with the concave sides (dull sides) facing each other and the tips of the sections upwards.

Take that section which is to become part of the wing on the far side of the hook first and measure if along the shank so that the tip curves upward where the bend turns down. Tie it onto the far side of the shank with one turn of thread. (the thread will just barely hold it in place but that’s all you need it to do.)

Now take the second section and measure it against the first section tied in. With your left thumb and forefinger, hold both sections in place. They should partially cover the upper sides of the hook shank though the major portion of each section is well above the shank.

Remove the temporary turn of thread you’ve taken over the first section. Keep the sections in place.

Bring your thread over both sections of quill down the far side of the shank, under, and pull straight up. Take two more turns of thread in the same area. If you have done it properly, they should appear as the one in the illustration. Clip the excess butts behind the eye.

With your thread, fill in any gaps and cover any exposed materials. Taper a neat small head and whip finish . A touch of head cement completes your wet fly.

Two other wet fly you can now tie using these procedures are:

COACHMAN wet fly (Sizes 10-16)______BLACK GNAT WET FLY (Sizes 10-16)

HOOK:----------Wet Fly---------------Wet Fly
BODY:----------Peacock herl-----------BODY:--------Black chenille
WING:----------White duck quill--------WING:--------Mallard quill

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