Offering fly tying materials is a natural extension of the "One Fly" tying kits, which are great for people who want to try out a new pattern without having to buy a large supply of new materials. If you know you are going to be tying a lot of the same flies, though, it does make sense to buy your fly tying materials in larger quantities.
Please note: International shipments will require additional postage. Please click on the appropriate button at the bottom of the page.
TenkaraBum Blue Fly Yarn - Free with any purchase (not just the purchase of blue fly materials).
This is the yarn at the center of the Blue Fly Challenge. It is not for sale. It is free with the purchase of any other item on the TenkaraBum site.
In a nutshell, the Blue Fly Challenge is a contest to catch the first, most, largest or smallest fish between April 1 and September 30 with a fly that is predominantly blue and uses at least a little of the Blue Fly Yarn. There are many ways to tie a predominantly blue fly. Here are some materials to help you, although a blue Killer Bug requires only the yarn, which is free with the purchase of anything on the site.
Silver Pheasant Dyed Blue - $5.50
I have never heard of people using silver pheasant as hackle for wet flies, but it works pretty well. (I couldn't find blue partridge.) The feathers are pretty large so you will have to strip most of the barbs off until what is left is the right size. I was able to tie size 14 yarn bodied wets without a problem. Makes a nice looking fly when combined with the Blue Fly yarn.
Blue Woolly Bugger Marabou - $2.50
If a black woolly bugger will catch almost any game fish, how about a blue one? Enter the Blue fly Challenge. Buy a package of Blue Woolly Bugger Marabou and get some Blue Fly Yarn free to tie blue Killer Buggers.
Blue Strung Saddle Hackle - $5.50
I suspect the winner of the "largest" fish in the Blue Fly Challenge will be a salt water fish - or at least a fish large enough that it primarily eats other fish rather than insects. That suggests a deceiver or a streamer, and that suggests saddle hackle.
Blue Northern Bucktail - $5.00
If you're going to be tying blue deceivers or blue over white clousers, you'll need a blue bucktail. Small bucktails actually work quite nicely with tenkara rods (twitched, not stripped). Whether small blue ones work gets to the essence of the Blue Fly Challenge. A big largemouth or pickerel, or who knows, a pike, could win the "largest" fish contest - that is, if it isn't a striper or, dare I say it, a bluefish.
Deer Hair Dyed Blue - $2.75
Want to participate in the Blue Fly Challenge but don't want to give up your CDC&Elk? How about Blue Deer & Yarn. The blue deer hair is surprisingly visible against the water (at least against the less than clear blue waters I have to fish). Also, every fly tyer knows that wool absorbs water. What most don't know is that it also absorbs floatant, and one drop of Water Shed applied the night before will keep a wool bodied deer hair fly floating for a long, long time. Water Shed is toward the bottom of the page. Because of government restrictions, I cannot ship this out of the country.
Blue UNI-Thread - $2.50
Your choice of Royal Blue or Silver Doctor Blue. Neither is a perfect match, either will work. A sakasa kebari with the blue-dyed silver pheasant hackle, a bit of the Blue Fly Yarn as a thorax and a blue thread body is as simple as most tenkara flies, and I've fooled fish with them.
Hen Pheasant skin with wings
partial tail - $16
no tail - $14
#2 skin with tail - $12
(photo shows different skin, without wings)
Hen pheasant is the traditional hackle for sakasa kebari in Japan. The breast feathers are a light tan, the back feathers a mottled brown.
Because of government restrictions, I cannot ship hen pheasant skins out of the country.
Very few skins in stock, subject to prior sale.
#1 Partridge skin natural - $29.00
#2 Partridge skin natural - $20.00
Partridge is not the traditional hackle for tenkara flies, but it works very nicely. It is one of the traditional feathers used for the North Country soft hackle flies tied in England and Scotland for hundreds of years. (A British soft hackle is just a tenkara fly with the hackle pointing the wrong way.) These skins are a bit smaller and very much nicer than the ones I've bought over the years on eBay.
Because of government restrictions, I cannot ship partridge skins out of the country.
Hungarian Partridge Wings (pair) - $4.50
Temporarily out of stock.
If you have ever wanted to tie soft hackles but haven't wanted to spring for a whole partridge skin and have been scared off by the horror stories of poor quality feathers when you buy by the package, you might want to consider partridge wings. I have decided to carry partridge wings instead of the hen pheasant wings because they have a lot more feathers in the sizes you would want for Killer Kebari and sakasa kebari. I am also now including a partridge wing in with the Killer Kebari One Fly tying kit.
Because of government restrictions I cannot ship partridge wings out of the country
India Hen Cape - $5.75
I have used the India Hen Cape for my Hen&Hound sakasa kebari, and I really liked the way the feather forms just the proper slant for a sakasa kebari almost by itself.
My supplier has discontinued the India Hen Capes and the only ones I have left are the "prince nymph brown", which is a medium brown with just a touch of red. It makes a very nice brown soft hackle for Ishigaki Kebari.
Starling Skin - $7.00 or $7.50
One of the most underappreciated fly tying materials, starling feathers are fabulous for soft hackle flies. Small, dark and iridescent, something about these feathers really attracts fish.
The brown skins are bleached but end up looking as if they were dyed brown. There are lots of feathers that are just the right size and color for a size 14 Ishigaki Kebari. Because starlings have lots of small to very small to impossible-to-tie-they're-so-small feathers, you could tie Ishigaki midges if you wanted to. I like soft hackled flies and believe the brown starling Ishigaki Kebari are going to prove to be just deadly.
Because starling feathers are naturally pretty dark, the purple is not really dramatic. The feather tips are purple, as is the fuzz. On the main part of feather it isn't as noticeable. I think this is why Tenkara Ashley ties her Punk Rock Kebari with more of the fuzz than I would normally use. When I tried the flies, the results were pretty impressive, though. (It was the only time I was ever able to outfish Dr. Ishigaki and Daniel put together!)
Because of government restrictions, I cannot ship starling skins out of the country.
Brown and purple starlings out of stock.
Peacock Eyed Sticks - $3.50
Natural only. The herl from the stick is much better than in the packages of strung herl. You really won't believe the difference. Even just a little peacock herl will give your Sakasa Kebari an iridescent "hot spot" thorax.
Pheasant Tail Pair - $2.50
Natural only. I use Pheasant tail for Sakasa Kebari. jd_smith uses it for his Mino Gujo. Frank Sawyer used it for nymphs. I think it catches fish no matter how you use it. Because of government restrictions, I cannot ship this out of the country.
Pheasant Complete Tail - $6.00
I've known for some time that you get the best peacock herl if you buy the eyed sticks rather than strung herl. I just found out that you get the best pheasant tail if you buy the whole tail. You'll get a lot more feathers and those center feathers will be the best you've ever seen.
CDC - $2.50
CDC floats naturally, so no waxy or chemical floatant is needed. The fibers are so wispy that they move with the slightest current or line twitch. Because of government restrictions, I cannot export the natural dun CDC.
Woolly Bugger Marabou - $2.50
I've heard it said that you can catch any fish that swims with a black woolly bugger. I don't think that's true, but if you can add a white woolly bugger and maybe even an olive, you could certainly catch just about any game fish. Use the black with the Little Dark Kebari yarn, the white with the Natural White yarn, the olive with Bracken yarn and the blue with the Blue Fly Yarn to tie Killer Buggers.
Deer Hair - $2.25
Like CDC, deer hair floats naturally. Why is the CDC & Elk tied with deer hair? That is a story for another day. All that really matters is that it works - and very nicely indeed.
Because of government restrictions, I cannot ship this out of the country.
Bleached Elk Hair - $3.00
When the shadows lengthen and the light dims, you'll appreciate the improved visibility of the bleached elk hair in your CDC & Elk - or should this version be called CDC & Deer?
Because of Government restrictions, I cannot ship this out of the country.
Snowshoe Hare's Feet (pair) - $4.00 domestic or $5 international
Like CDC or deer and elk hair, the hair from the bottom of a snowshoe hare's hind foot floats naturally, so anglers who do not wish to use floatant can use it. Besides tying thread, this is the only ingredient in Fran Betters' (and Kiwi's) Usual. Unlike CDC or deer and elk hair, though, there are no export restrictions on it. Prices to international destinations $1 higher to offset higher shipping cost.
Pearsall's silk thread - $4.50
The classic thread for British soft hackle patterns. Silk has a translucent quality that cannot be matched by polyester or nylon threads. Plus, silk darkens when it is wet, the hot orange turns almost a mahogany brown. The bright colors are only bright when the silk is dry. (Note: the spools are much smaller than standard spools.)
UNI-Thread - $2.50
Black, gray and tan, etc. are natural and expected colors for trout flies, but if you tie flies for bluegills (and bluegills love sakasa kebari) do not ignore the chartreuse. And of course you'll want pink for tying the Utah Killer Bug. Do not forget Olive for the Punk Rock Sakasa Kebari or Royal Blue for the Blue Fly Challenge (you still need the Blue Fly Yarn, though).
Gordon Griffith's Sheer 14/0 - $2.75
If you are going to tie flies on size 26 hooks, you are going to want a thin thread. This one is lightly waxed, stronger than you would expect for being so fine, and creates minimal build up. This is the one you want.
Killer Bug Yarn (Sand) - $9.60
The Chadwicks 477 Frank Sawyer used for his killer bugs hasn't been made in decades. Substitutes exist and this is one of the best. It has red fibers running through it like the original, and if colored with a Prismacolor marker it turns pinkish tan when wet. 105 meters.
Killer Bug Yarn Package - $2.50
Don't need enough for a whole sweater? Handy package contains about 4 yards of yarn, sufficient for at least 25 Killer bugs.
Utah Killer Bug Yarn (oyster) - $9.60
This is the "Oyster" yarn used by the Tenkara Guides in Salt Lake to tie the Utah Killer Bug. It is a little darker and quite a bit pinker than the yarn I use, and they tie and fish their bugs as is, without coloring the yarn with a prismacolor marker. Like my killer bug is for me, though, theirs is their most productive pattern, across different stream types (and whether scuds are present or not).
Utah Killer Bug Yarn Package - $2.50
This is the yarn used for the Utah Killer Bug variation developed by Tenkara Guides LLC in Salt Lake City. Darker, pinker, with some blue fibers, this is the "spectrumized" version. No Prismacolor Marker is required for this yarn. About 4 yards
Bracken Yarn Package - $2.50
Very few things in nature are a single uniform color. There is almost always a blending of colors or at least different shadings of color. I like to choose yarns that have different colored fibers running through the yarn. Bracken is primarily a light yellowish green with black fibers running through it. (It is quite a bit more yellow and less green in real life than the photo shows.) Like all 100% wool yarns, it darkens when wet, but the presence of black fibers makes the yarn a very dark olive when wet. However, it isn't as uniform dark olive, there are subtle darker and lighter areas, with some light stray strands.
The photo on the left shows a simple Bracken yarn damselfly nymph dry and wet. About 4 yards.
Buttermilk Yarn Package - $2.50
This yarn is a light yellow color and would work very nicely for a yarn bodied sulfur if you are a hatch matcher or an Amano Kebari if you aren't. About 4 yards.
Fog Yarn Package - $2.50
Fog is a mix of pink and gray fibers (a little more gray than shown in the photo - getting colors right is very difficult). Quite a bit darker than the oyster. About 4 yards.
Green Rock Worm Yarn Package - $2.50
Mostly green with a little yellow mixed in. As with all the other yarns, it gets darker when wet.
About 4 yards.
Little Dark Kebari (Oxford) Yarn Package - $2.50
Oxford is a dark charcoal yarn with light fibers running through it. Not being a uniform color, it presents a more lifelike image. Can be used for any wet fly or nymph for which a dark, fuzzy appearance is desired. Goes very nicely with starling hackle or black woolly bugger marabou. About 4 yards.
Mist Yarn Package - $2.50
Mist is another yarn that I learned about from the Tenkara Guides. I haven't fished with this one yet, but the Guides swear by it. I do know that blue works in flies and have wondered why there weren't more blue flies after Andrea Scalvini told me that they work quite well with his pesca mosca Valsesiana. Try the Mist yarn when you want a slightly lighter body than the Purple Haze will give you. Like all 100% wool yarns, it will darken when wet. About 4 yards.
Moorit Yarn Package - $2.50
This is another yarn that comes recommended by the Tenkara Guides. I had known of this one before. Moorit is the brown strand of the brown and gray Moorit-Shaela (nymph yarn) but I had never used it by itself. It makes a very nice body to go with either a hen pheasant feather or a partridge back feather. It is really more of a uniform brown than the photo makes it appear. About 4 yards.
Nymph Yarn (Moorit-Shaela) - $9.60
This is the yarn that got me started with yarn-bodied flies. I tied nymphs with it with extra yarn wraps to create a wider thorax. It is a two-ply yarn with one brown ply and one gray ply. When wet it turns very dark but not quite black.
This yarn is great for yarn-bodied soft hackles with partridge feathers. Separate the strands and use the gray strand with the gray breast feathers and the brown strand with the brown back feathers.
Nymph Yarn (Moorit-Shaela) Package - $2.50
Instead of nymph yarn, I should have called this Partidge Yarn. Separate the strands and use the gray strand with the gray breast feathers and the brown strand with the brown back feathers. About 4 yards.
Purple Haze Yarn - $9.60
This is a yarn that I learned about from the Tenkara Guides in Salt Lake City. They swear by it and now I do, too. The first fly I tied with it, a simple soft hackle with a Purple Haze yarn body and a partridge back feather, was surprisingly effective for both trout and bluegills.
Out of stock
Purple Haze Yarn Package - $2.50
This is a a great yarn for yarn bodied soft hackles tied with partridge back feathers. If you don't think you'll need enough for 500 flies, perhaps the package is the way to go. About 4 yards.
Out of stock
Shaela Yarn Package - $2.50
Shaela yarn is the gray strand within the Moorit-Shaela (nymph yarn). It is a medium gray, but unlike most gray yarns, it is not spun and then dyed a uniform gray. It is spun from a mixture of very dark gray fibers and very light fibers. The color is much more interesting and is more lifelike when wet. It makes a very nice body to go with a partridge breast feather. About 4 yards.
Sunglow Yarn - $9.60
If there is any fly tying material as storied as the Chadwicks 477 of the original Killer Bug, it has to be the Tups dubbing used in the original Tups Indispensable. It should be called the Tups Unobtainable. You can't get it, or at least you can't get it quite right quite, shall we say, legally, if you live in the US. The hair from a ram's scrotum is hard enough, but the hair from an unborn seal is well nigh impossible. This yarn is for those tyers who'd like to have a fly thorax material that's a little bit yellow and a little bit red but who don't fancy emulating Jason (no, not that Jason) and his quest for the golden fleece. And even if you're not tying a Tups Indispensable, this yarn makes a very effective Killer Bug.
Sunglow Yarn Package - $2.50
Try this one. It makes an excellent Killer Bug and a passable Tups. I am certain that an Amano Kebari with a thorax of this yarn would be a very good fly.
About 4 yards.
Thyme Yarn Package- $2.50
What you see is not quite what you'll get. I could not capture the color exactly with my camera and light (and photography skills). It's kind of an olive green with a hint of gray, and maybe a touch of yellow. It is more olive than the Bracken and not nearly as yellow. As soon as I saw it I thought it would work nicely as a yarn body for a Punk Rock Sakasa Kebari. (I find it interesting, if a little disappointing, that Jamieson's also has colors named Sage and Rosemary, but no Parsley. Thay have Paprika but Paprika, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme just doesn't quite sound right.) About 4 yards.
Natural White Yarn Package- $2.50
Use the Natural White Yarn along with white woolly bugger marabou to make white killer buggers, which will imitate small shiners about as well as anything. The natural white yarn isn't bleached or dyed. It's just the way the sheep made it. About 4 yards.
Wren Yarn Package- $2.50
The overall color of the wren looks like a greyish tan, but it is made up of a number of different colors, and also contains some very light and very dark fibers. It should make a very nice yarn bodied soft hackle with a hen pheasant or partridge feather. About 4 yards.
Ultra Wire, Small, Copper - $1.75
The killer bug is tied with copper wire instead of tying thread. It provides a bit of extra non-toxic weight and holds up well to trout teeth. International orders $1 higher to offset extra postage.
Ultra Wire, Small, Red - $1.75
I tie the Utah killer bug with red copper wire. Erik of the Tenkara Guides uses pink wire, but my supplier doesn't carry pink. Rob, also of the Tenkara Guides, uses red. That's good enough for me.
International orders $1 higher to offset extra postage.
Water Shed - $4.50
For anglers who use floatant, this is a nice one. A drop of Water Shed 24 hours before you use the fly will leave your flies floating for a long time. No oily residue on the water like Gink, doesn't mat down hair or hackle like Mucilin. A drop of Water Shed just as you finish tying the fly will make your Blue Fly Challenge Deer Hair & Yarn Caddis float for a long time.
Brass Beads - $2.50
Tungsten Beads $6.00
Now that there are rods capable of effectively fishing beadhead nymphs, there's no reason for you not to tie them and no reason for me to not offer the beads. To start with, I'll just offer a couple options: Brass beads in 5/32", which is appropriate for the size 10 Daiichi 1120 hooks, and tungsten beads in 5/64" which is appropriate for the Daiichi 1560 nymph hook in size 18, which I now carrying to go with the tungsten beads.
Interestingly, a size 18 Daiichi 1560, along with a 5/64" tungsten bead weighs less than a size 10 Daiichi 1120 hook by itself. It should not feel any different when casting. A fly tied on an 18 hook with a bead will sink faster than a fly tied on a 10 hook without a bead because it is smaller and is thus less affected by water resistance. With a small fly and a small bead, you don't need the stiffest rod to cast it.Brass Beads, package of 24 - $2.50
Prismacolor Marker, Sand - $5.00
This marker transforms the killer bug yarn from a light oatmeal color to the tan that creates the crucial pinkish tan color when wet.
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Daiichi, Tenkara and Eyeless Hooks
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Please note: Because of US Government regulations, I cannot ship some fly tying materials outside of the US. Bird skins, deer hair, bleached elk, pheasant tail feathers and natural dun CDC feathers are restricted to US addresses.
Domestic shipping is $3. Most small items can be shipped together for a flat $3 charge.
International shipments require an additional $6 to Canada and and additional $11 to other countries. Please click the appropriate button.