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 Post subject: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 10th, 2019, 1:16 pm 
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Joined: December 2nd, 2001, 1:00 am
Posts: 4210
Location: Ellsworth
All........

Is there a more versatile dryfly than a Sparkle Dun/ ComparaDun? I was pondering that question this morning as I was tying up another dozen BWO Sparkle Duns.

Some got tied up with Biot bodies.......some with dubbed bodies........some with thread bodies........some tied as Improved SD’s with z-Lon tails and z-Lon behind the wing. You can tie these on straight shank dry fly hooks........or on curved scud hooks as a true emerger.

Use Whiting tailing fibers........use your thread to split the tailing fibers.......and you have a ComparaDun.

When I’m dry fly fishing the first style of fly I always take out and tie on is a Sparkle Dun. I’ve had guys/gals tell me that they have a devil of a time getting the hair wing to flare correctly. That’s almost always a problem if you’re tying with the wrong deer hair. You need hollow hair that flares easily. I always call the guys at Blue Ribbon flies......tell them exactly what I’m tying, and they send me the correct hair.

I do tie Parachutes and (rarely) Catskills patterns too,........
But my absolute “go to” dry fly is a Sparkle Dun. I tie them from gigantic size 8’s (Hex’s) down to size 22’s. You just can’t ever go far wrong with this pattern.

Dave M

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"Fish the West every year. Life is short; and you'll be dead a long time." Chris Hutchins--2009


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 10th, 2019, 2:08 pm 
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Joined: August 7th, 2004, 12:00 am
Posts: 71
Location: Plymouth, ME
I think of them as Comparaduns and yes, they're one of my favorites. It always feels right they way they ride the water. My very first exposure to the fly was from a fly shop owner on the CT river and he recommended them in his favorite form as Isonychia Comparadun. Which I'm pretty sure meant a mottled body and a split tail (could be wrong about the tail). Solid performers.


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 10th, 2019, 4:39 pm 
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Joined: October 15th, 2003, 12:00 am
Posts: 1396
Location: Bangor
Two of my VT buddies came up with a sparkle dun they dubbed "The Compara-crawler". It was so effective on Delaware fish that it was like using worms... On my trip out west last fall, the only dry I fished for the whole week was a comparadun in olive or purple- 14-20.


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 10th, 2019, 5:27 pm 
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Joined: February 14th, 2007, 1:00 am
Posts: 1519
Location: New Hampshire
Yup, a grey Biot body one was my go to fly in Europe, filled by cream body.

Agree, with the right hair, and using a razor blade to cut off the butt ends changed the game on the flies.

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"Fishermen...spending their lives in the fields and woods...are often in a more favorable mood for observing her, in the intervals of their pursuits, than philosophers or poets even, who approach her with expectation." - Thoreau


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 10th, 2019, 5:31 pm 
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Joined: September 28th, 2003, 12:00 am
Posts: 2710
Hey Dave
I'll take a dozen of them in Hendrickson, sulpher, and march brown. You can hand deliver them to me and stay over a couple days. They plugged the hole in the dam so water levels are prime along with the fishing. When the rivers drop you can head back north. Grab title guy and a few others and bring them along if you want.

Ron

PS and it's only about an hour and forty-five on to the catskills.

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The charm of fishing is that it is the pursuit of something that is elusive but attainable, a perpetual series of occasions for hope.

Sir John Buchan


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 10th, 2019, 6:18 pm 
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Joined: December 2nd, 2001, 1:00 am
Posts: 4210
Location: Ellsworth
Ron,

Tempting, trust me. I had to be in Ct. last weekend for a family funeral, so obviously, no fishing. It’s a good six and a half hour drive for us in far Downeast Maine. I was tieing up 20’s today. My dry fly box is chock a block full, but you can never have enough Sparkle Duns

Dave M

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"Fish the West every year. Life is short; and you'll be dead a long time." Chris Hutchins--2009


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 10th, 2019, 10:06 pm 
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Joined: July 21st, 2011, 9:30 pm
Posts: 885
Location: Brunswick
I agree Dave,
If I'm fishing a dry its almost always a Sparkle dun, for mayflies anyway....

I do struggle with getting the wing correct, even with BRF deer hair, and am sure 95% of mine are "wrong" but they do fish. I will say I never tie a compara fun, always a sparkle dun. Maybe I'll tie some comparas.....

Peter

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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 10th, 2019, 10:53 pm 
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Joined: September 28th, 2003, 12:00 am
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Peter and all
Biggest help to getting the wings to come out proper I feel is to watch Craig Mathews from BRF tie in his video. Tying the wing in one third clumps keeps it in the upright position. Also less material results in a much better looking wing.

Ron

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The charm of fishing is that it is the pursuit of something that is elusive but attainable, a perpetual series of occasions for hope.

Sir John Buchan


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 11th, 2019, 1:20 pm 
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Joined: December 2nd, 2001, 1:00 am
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Location: Ellsworth
All......

One tip that I did fail to mention, and I thought of it this morning as I was tying up another 1/2 dozen 20’s is this:

Along with the correct deer hair the most important tool to have is a good metal comb ( not the plastic junk ones). You must get all the underfur out of the hair, because if you don’t it won’t cinch down tight enough, won’t flare, and your fly will, in all probability, fall apart.

I get my comb from Gary LaFontaines The Book Mailer, but I’ve seen the same small metal comb in other fly shops.

Good tying, everyone! The streams will ( I hope) come back down soon......will warm up......and we may actually get some fishing in.

Dave M

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"Fish the West every year. Life is short; and you'll be dead a long time." Chris Hutchins--2009


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 11th, 2019, 3:10 pm 
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Joined: February 14th, 2007, 1:00 am
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Location: New Hampshire
Peter,

Surprised you’re having trouble, I remember being surprised how easy those wings just popped up, but I will third the idea of winding through the wing, in thirds to lock it in. My issue was spinning more than shape. The other trick is to use ur thumb to mash it around the shank and then to flare it back.

FWIW, I never had any luck with any z-long or Antron tails. I just use CDL fibers.

_________________
"Fishermen...spending their lives in the fields and woods...are often in a more favorable mood for observing her, in the intervals of their pursuits, than philosophers or poets even, who approach her with expectation." - Thoreau


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 12th, 2019, 10:31 am 
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Joined: April 1st, 2010, 10:35 am
Posts: 333
Location: flatland and Vienna Me.
I'm going to try some of these after reading the comments. Without giving any secrets away, are there any favorite combos. Body, tail, thread colors. PM if that works.
Thanks for any info.


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 12th, 2019, 10:43 am 
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Joined: December 2nd, 2001, 1:00 am
Posts: 4210
Location: Ellsworth
igloo lake wrote:
I'm going to try some of these after reading the comments. Without giving any secrets away, are there any favorite combos. Body, tail, thread colors. PM if that works.
Thanks for any info.



Tail: tannish z-Lon ( not darlon or Antron......it must be zlon
Body: PMD; BWO; Hendrickson dubbing or biots
Thread: To match body
Wing: Blue Dun deer

You can’t go far wrong with these, Bill

Dave M

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"Fish the West every year. Life is short; and you'll be dead a long time." Chris Hutchins--2009


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 12th, 2019, 2:11 pm 
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Joined: February 14th, 2007, 1:00 am
Posts: 1519
Location: New Hampshire
Grey and tan Biot bodies, sized 16, two shade darker dubbing for thorax, Coq De Leon fibers for tail. Natural comparison hair.

_________________
"Fishermen...spending their lives in the fields and woods...are often in a more favorable mood for observing her, in the intervals of their pursuits, than philosophers or poets even, who approach her with expectation." - Thoreau


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: May 14th, 2019, 7:00 am 
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Joined: April 1st, 2010, 10:35 am
Posts: 333
Location: flatland and Vienna Me.
Thanks for the tips guys.


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 Post subject: Re: Sparkle Duns
PostPosted: June 3rd, 2019, 11:23 pm 
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Joined: June 12th, 2014, 10:38 am
Posts: 136
Hey titleguy, who was you with out west last fall. LizzBean?

Yup. I keep them in a sulpher/PMD 16 and 18 and BWO in 18 and 20

Gotta have a Cornuta in 14.

Yes. Versatile. Gotta be some snooty fish to dis a properly drifted, properly proportioned, properly filmy Sparkle Dun.

And they're a joke to tie. The first one is a little wonky and then it's off to the races.

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Don't die over ridiculousness that doesn't involve landlocks. - S. Ratten


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