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The Head


Signature 1The head of a fly is the portion at the front at which the thread windings end at the completion of the fly.  It is considered by most serious tiers a necessary evil.  Hence, tying experts from time immemorial have held that the head of a fly should be made as imperceptible as possible.  I don’t worry much about that standard in my tying, instead attempting to construct heads that compliment the rest of the fly in beauty and proportion.  That said, I thought it would be fun to try to tie a fly with no head at all.  More than that, this fly was to be continuously spun and woven from one tip of the necklace chain to the other, making a head an unattractive interruption to the flow of the entire fly.  By splicing the necklace chain with more strands of gold attached directly to the hook, I simply enveloped what would traditionally be the head of the fly in a blur of spinning and weaving gold.

The lack of a head on the fly created an interesting problem:  The head is usually where I place my signature, a script ‘S’ and ‘D’, each inlaid in the lacquer on either side of the head.  After giving it a lot of thought, I finally decided to take advantage of the many wires being spun into the fly and incorporate the signature into them.  I fashioned the signature in the middle of a strand of 34-gauge gold wire, which for the first time was both of my initials side-by-side in the same piece of wire.  Without inlaying it in lacquer, the delicate signature would have to be otherwise protected.  So rather than placing it in front of the fly, where the head would typically be, I placed it just behind the head, inside the protective exoskeleton formed by the interweaving wire bundles.  Successfully completing the signature was quite difficult, and it is nearly imperceptible in the finished fly, but I feel that incorporating it is important in authenticating the fly as my own, and I was pleased with how it turned out.

 

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