View Full Version : Mickey Finn Problem
12-17-2007, 10:37 AM
I am new to tying and have been doing a little practicing. I am having a problem with the Mickey Finn. I can not get the first layer of yellow to lay flat. It just wants to angle up and then each other layer keeps getting higher and higher. Can someone give me a little advice on how to solve this problem??
12-17-2007, 11:02 AM
I'm not 100% sure about getting it to lay flat, but if it is angling up, I would make a few more wraps down the shank over the hair to get the stack to flatten. After the stack is secure on the hook shank angle cut the end to make room for the next stack of hair.
I'm assuming you mean that it's pointing up too high away from the body at the back end of the fly. That's a Western Fastwater style wing :)
One common cause is you have a bit of a shoulder at the end of the body and are tying the wing in too close to it. Try putting your first wrap on the wings a little bit away from the body, try about 3 turns away from the body/ribbing tie off and make sure your wraps go forward.
Another "trick" is to start your tiedown of the wing at the end of the tiedown area (closer to the hook eye), with tight wraps and instead of wrapping forwards, wrap back towards the bend of the hook, with a little less tension in the last couple.
Make sure you are tying the ribbing off underneath the hook, not on top; you'll get less chance of making a shoulder to prop the wing up.
Don't use too much hair in each layer; Mickey Finns fish better if they are a little bit sparse in the wing.
For each layer, start the tie down ahead (towards the hook eye) of where the previous layer started by about one turn of thread.
I agree with Mer, be careful that you're not building too much bulk in the shoulder area, as a result of your body.
I do disagree a bit too, I always start to tie things in toward the body and work to the head, that creates the ability to taper the material to build a nice tapered head.
When hair flares, like you're explaining, it is usually because your first wrap is too tight. Try making your first pinch wrap very loose, only putting as much tension on the thread/hair as is created by the weight of your bobbin. This will keep the hair in place, but not cause it to kink and flare out. With each subsequent wrap, pull it a little tighter, and move slightly to the right. Because you're stacking 3 colors, try to minimize the amount of wraps per stack, or else you're head area will be too large.
Lastly, Buck Tail doesn't have much tendnacy to flare in my experience, nothing like deer hair, so do your best bet is to tie the hair in as close to the tips as possible, that way, the thick hair, near the butt ends will have less propensity to cause the hair to flare.
Hope that helps.
12-21-2007, 08:55 AM
I mat get skewered for this :oops: :lol: but unless you're specifically targeting Brookies IMO the Mickey Finn is one of the worst flies known to man. If you need to tie bucktails (a pattern style I'm not particularly enamored with) try tieing Black Nosed Dace....you'll catch 100 trout on a BND to every one caught on Mickey Finns.
Of course, as always, YMMV.......... :shock:
Them's in fighting words in New England....
IronicallyI don't disagree with Dave at all. The window for using attractors is small, and when they are working, everything works.... I prefer patterns that are more imitative, but to each their own.
I also don't use bucktail wings, I find that they have very little action. On my streamers I only use bucktail for color or support for wings made of feather or marabou wings. Now kiptail is a whole other animal (pun intended), it makes a lot of noise and is more active.
I'd be lying if I said that I didn't have a few mickey finn's in my box, mostly for nostalgia sake, but they haven't seen water in a long time.
My name is TGIF and I approve this message. :lol:
12-21-2007, 11:30 AM
Hummmmmm. All the fish I've caught on Mickey Finns must have been a fluke (pun not intended)
12-21-2007, 11:41 AM
All good suggestions... the fastest thing to do if you can't control bucktail yet is to use the material from the tip of the tail.
12-21-2007, 11:42 AM
If you're looking for one with a lot of action; you can't beat this one.
Hey! I fish with the guy that tied that!
Marabou, kid goat, Arctic Fox are all good subs for bucktail. One tendency with bucktails is to make the wing way too full; sparse works better in the water, full works better at catching fishermen.
Kid goat is nice, some times it is hard to find though... Dick Talleur uses kid goat for is mickey finns and they are nice.
I'm certain that catching fish with a Mickey Finn is no fluke, especially in the fall, but as I said, when attractors work anything works. I like to fish streamers all year, which means that colors, size and shape need to be inline with the natural forage. It is the same as matching a mayfly hatch, and do date, I have yet to see a minnow that was red and yellow, unless it went through a blender (hint, hint).
Nothing better then a nice hard take on a quickly stripped streamer....
12-28-2007, 08:35 AM
What hook are you using to tie your Mickey Finn?
I may be able to help you with this problem.
NH YOUNG GUN
01-06-2008, 04:19 PM
Dont forget to cement your flashabu to the hook so that one fish doesnt poof it on you!
-NH YOUNG GUN
Flashabou? You're tying a Mickey Finn Variant if you put flashabou in it. Traditional body is flat silver tinsel, ribbed with oval. I'm not denying that flashabou may make a good body, just pointing out it's not in the traditional tying.
A thin layer of head cement over the thread wraps prior to wrapping any type of body is a good trick to remember for durability. It takes you a little bit longer to tie, but it is more durable. Art Flick used to do it under his dubbed bodies, works under chenille and peacock herl too.
NH YOUNG GUN
01-07-2008, 06:11 AM
Ut oh, my secret is out! :shock: haha Actually I did mean tinsle and I have no idea why I wrote flashabu... But I do know that crystal flash wrapped exactly 746 times around the hook will work on mamouth Salmon!
-NH YOUNG GUN
Those 746 wraps, are they all on top of each other or up and down the hook?
01-07-2008, 12:03 PM
Another key point is the thread. Using a flat thread such as danville or UTC can also help tremendously. Before tying in the bucktail, untwist the bobbin so the thread is flat. This first couple of wraps will fully support the bucktail softly. It is more critical to lock in the fibers though as your first wraps don't help with pullout strength. Once the first couple of wraps are made, then twist and bite into the bucktail closer to the hook eye. I then lock in in the bucktail in 1/3 segments. Then trim.
I used to UNI 8/0 and still do for fishing flies. But for critical wing placement, floss bodies, and anything else somewhat ornate - I have been using flat untwisted thread (at the bobbin). Just because it is unbonded thread (unlike UNI) unless you manage the flatness at the bobbin you can lose that benefit.
01-07-2008, 03:31 PM
As a new tyer, you may want to check out Tom's classes at Mountain Road Fly. He is doing a beginner's session on Tuesday evenings. First class is tomorrow for the woolly bugger, but the mickey finn will be coming up soon. check his web site for a schedule of what will be tied each week.
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