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Kelson mixed wing

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#1 Hr. Bach

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Posted 21 November 2009 - 11:15 PM

In the post with The Captain I posted, I promised to post a tutorial on how to make a mixed wing according to Kelson. Here it is. I have adjusted a few things to fit my own ways of tying, but it should give the result as reading his instructions. I hope it makes sense and it can inspire some to take up the challenge. There are no secrets in making good looking flies out of this, but practice.

The Captain
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All materials collected and sorted. Materials for the near wing side of fly as it is shown to the right and far wing to the left. Please note I am left-handed, this is why the fly points to the left. Each side divided in short (three strips on top) and long fibred materials (six strips in bottom). For this fly I have taken strips with five strands of each material. Practice will teach you the needed amount.

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Start with the short materials from left side. Take one of the strips; here teal, and start build three bundles. As you make three bundles and have five strands, there will only be one strand in the last bundle, but donít worry about this. Note that the points are aligned and laid close together.

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Continue with the next material. Start where you ended with the first material (bundle 3).
Still, take care that the points are aligned.

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Continue with the last material in the same way. Now you have the three bundles with almost same amount of material in no particular order.

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Pick up one of the bundles with a tweezers near the points of the strands as shown. Using a soft pad (like leather) can be helpful here.

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Take the strands from the tweezers with you fingers, grab them near the points and stroke them gently together. Order is of no importance and they just have to stick together, not being fully married. When this is done, lay the bundle back on the table. Always keep the strands curving downward.

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Repeat with the two other bundles.

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Pick up two of the bundles; lay them between you fingers, the upper extending beyond the lower and stroke them gently together.

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Repeat with the last bundle.

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Following instructions so far, should give you one finished outer wing.

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In same way build an inner wing with the long fibred materials for the left wing.

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Again, pick up one bundle and stroke the strands together. Repeat with rest of the bundles.

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Stroke the three bundles together, one at a time, as for pic.8 and 9. Now you should have an inner and an outer wing for left side of the fly (seen towards the head of the fly).

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Repeat all of the above for the other side of the wing.

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As everything are tied in together, lay the outer wing on the inner. It is good practice to measure the wing against the fly for positioning the outer wing, to make sure you got as much of the outer wing as possible shown in the final fly.

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Pick up both sides of the wing.

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Place the whole wing on top of the fly.

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Tie the wing on, no glue and no tools, just tie it down. Hint: When I have tied it in an secured the wing with three-four turns of thread, but before I let go on the grip of the wing, I twist the root ends of the wing towards the way I turn to set the wing right.

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Wing tied on.

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The finished fly with roof of mallard, topping etc.


Classic angling literature and patterns: http://www.classic-salmonfly.dk/


#2 Ronn Lucas

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Posted 21 November 2009 - 11:44 PM

Stunning Martin!!!!!!!! I love it!!!!!
Happy Trails!

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#3 Monquarter


    Marc LeBlanc

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Posted 21 November 2009 - 11:52 PM

Thank you Martin. I will study these steps many, many times.


#4 Mike Boyer

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 12:23 AM

Martin, thank you for taking the time to demonstrate the method. I will bookmark the lesson for study and practice.

#5 Kid Cole

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 03:27 AM

Excellent! Very informative.

Thanks for taking the time to do all of this,


#6 bobfly


    Bob Frandsen. East Gippsland. Victoria. Australia

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 03:34 AM

Martin, very nicely presented!!!!!!!

#7 moabbiker


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Posted 22 November 2009 - 04:10 AM

love the tutorial sir!!!!!!!! laugh.gif
i've got a mind, i've got half a mind to shut down the whole system at the spine with fishing line!
-built to spill (stab)

#8 QCflies


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Posted 22 November 2009 - 04:17 AM

Martin Thanks for that incredible step-by-step. No Admins- PIN THIS BAD BOY!

Whichever way your pleasure tends, if you plant ice you're gonna' harvest wind

#9 aaronostoj


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Posted 22 November 2009 - 05:40 AM

Great info. Thanks, Martin!

CHECK OUT MY BLOG http://www.aaronmost...s.com/blog.html


#10 geraldsherbrook


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Posted 22 November 2009 - 08:56 AM


A 'shear' and 'tutorial' DELIGHT !

Love it...love it...love it...(and ofcourse this / YOURS should once more be 'pinned' for this forum)...

For all the ones (as especially me) who aren't realy familiar with the Kelson mix or 'another way' of mixing...Your text and handlings and photo's are 'eyecandy'...ofcourse as You stated at Your start...there is allways the word 'practise makes BETTER ...which in this case I believe it (as allways)..

Anyway a big thanks for 'gifting' us Your KELSON mixed wing tutuorial...by the way YOUR endproduct 'Your' CAPTAIN shows great ...Kelson would had been proud ...

Voted Sexiest Fly Tyer for 2013

#11 E. Oregon Midge

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 09:15 AM

Thanks Martin for this great info. Buy the way the finished fly is AWESOME!!!!!

You are what you eat and i don't eat chicken By Rocky
The best advice i can give is slow down By Bud Gudry

#12 janm


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Posted 22 November 2009 - 09:27 AM

This is the best lesson i've ever had. Thank you very much, Martin

I have never quit understood how a mixed wing could be build and I got the difference between a strip and a strand completely wrong.


Looking for some patterns ? On this page you'll find some classic patterns in the English language.

Here You'll find some that don't have a name.

#13 kjaer


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Posted 22 November 2009 - 10:09 AM

Hi Martin

This is just great.

Its realy facinating to study the different ways to tye a flie. (Also a great challenge as you now)

They couldent whach TV, so they had a lot of time in the past, the result was
realy beautifull flies.

We owe the old inovators, many thanks for their baeutifull flies and techniques.

Best regards

#14 sky-pilot


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Posted 22 November 2009 - 02:27 PM

JUST GREEEAT smile.gif
All the best


winner of the 2012 sexiest fly tyer award

#15 kilchis


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Posted 22 November 2009 - 07:03 PM

That took Quite a bit of doing!! Beautiful results.
Thanks Martin!
dave p.

#16 angler andrew

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 08:20 PM

Wow what a skillfull piece of tying,i think i better get my coat.
another possible inductee into the slackers club

#17 Scott Stisser

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 09:28 PM

Yes, this is somewhat what I gleaned from Kelson's book but all the steps sure is a help. I do hope the PIN this for future reference.
Thanks for sharing your time and energy to present this.
The TRUTH is whether one believes it or not

#18 Matt Inman

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 10:56 PM

That is gorgeous. Thanks for sharing your technique.
Don't be afraid to go out on a limb, that is where the fruit is located.

#19 DaveT


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Posted 23 November 2009 - 12:16 AM

Brilliant, Martin! Thanks for taking the time to do that!!
"Goin' home, goin' home, by the waterside I will rest my bones.
Listen to the river sing sweet songs, to rock my soul."

#20 WaterWolf


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Posted 23 November 2009 - 02:33 AM

Great tutorial Martin!!! Lots to learn from it and thanks for putting it together for all to enjoy...