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Folding hackles (Backside scissors method)

Folding hackles

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13 replies to this topic

#1 Nice One

Nice One

    Sven Axelsson

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 06:26 PM

Hi All. I wrote in my previous post that I use to fold my hackles with my scissors.

I then promised to show some pictures on this method and here it is. This work on most of feathers and I also use it for the throats. I use the edged back on my scissor but you can choose anything that has a not-too sharp edge.

1. Choose your feather. This is a dyed Cock Hackle

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2. Stroke the barbs back to form a v-shape. You can cut the tip off if you want

but on this fishing fly I keep it like this to help bulk up some taper to the body.

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3. Tie in the hackle were you want it.

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4-5. Grab the hackle by the root and pull it up (or down if you like) .Put the scissors in a slight angel against the stem.

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6. Now put a little pressure against the stem with the scissor and start pulling towards the root of the feather.

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7. Repeat on the other side

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8. If everything works well it might look this.

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As said before, “there are many ways to skin a cat”. This is my way to fold a Hackle, wich has worked for me for a long time. As usual it takes some practice, but when you learn it, it can be very useful.



#2 geraldsherbrook


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Posted 01 November 2012 - 07:01 PM

Dear SVEN,

Nice 'work' and 'tutorial'........such a helpfull 'one' even !

I know our 'Irish' friend PETER KEALEY uses this same technique to double 'all' of his hackles on his flies (bodyhackles and throaths !)

It will be a extremely wellcome 'tutorial' my friend !!!

With lots of respect for bringing this 'one' over to the forum members

Voted Sexiest Fly Tyer for 2013

#3 lucaseabass


    Luca Montanari

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 07:45 PM

Hi Sven,
very interesting technique and I will try to use it in my next tying session. I generally "double" the hackle with the finger tips of one hand, but I want to see if I can get a better result with your suggestion.



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Posted 01 November 2012 - 08:24 PM

thanks Sven, thats one thing i've been struggling with. Its always the simple things that are usually the hardest!

#5 BSH


    Bogdan Shivrinskiy St.Petersburg, Russia

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 08:36 PM

Interesting method and great result! Thanks for sharing, Sven. Will try it instead of usual way with fingertips.

Bogdan Shivrinskiy


#6 BCBound


    Scott Norris, New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada.

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 08:44 PM

Thanks Sven! I'm going to give this one a try. Really appreciate the time you spent on this.


Scott Norris

The sunken pool is nice and cool....

#7 dave08


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Posted 01 November 2012 - 08:56 PM

very intersesting Sven i'm gonna try this on my next fly-thanks for posting
David Elzea

#8 angler andrew

angler andrew

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Posted 01 November 2012 - 11:48 PM

Thats just mega Sven,what a cool method,gonna try this for sure!

another possible inductee into the slackers club

#9 pork


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Posted 02 November 2012 - 01:52 AM

I fold mine almost the same way. I don't tie it in first, however. I always have a pair of hackle pliers dangling off the back end of my vise to attach the hackle for scissor folding.

Thanks for the pics! It's always difficult to explain this method without showing it. I always tell people that you can feel the feather "clicking" when you do it right...you probably know what I mean, Sven.

#10 steelyjim


    Jim Haswell Midland, Michigan U.S.A

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 02:28 PM

I do this also, but normally just do the one side. I will try it on both sides and see how it goes, should be better.
Jim Haswell

#11 mike townend

mike townend

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Posted 03 November 2012 - 06:03 PM

hi slim
many thanks

#12 dogsnfish



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Posted 03 November 2012 - 08:24 PM

Thanks! Looking forward to trying this.

#13 jlevine


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Posted 06 November 2012 - 08:08 PM

Thanks for putting this together. I am going to try this out tonight. It appears that when I just use my fingers it starts out looking nice, but when I work my way up the feather it seems to loose what I accomplished on the earlier part of the feather. Likely I just need to practice more, but I will give this method a go and hope for the best.
Well, thanks again as these tutorials help more than you know.

#14 Lafo


    Mo Rustempasic

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 03:40 AM

I tried this a few days ago and it worked like a charm. And there was a distinct clicking sound when I moved the scissors up or down the feather. Folded that hackle in no time and I found it much easier than folding with my fingers. Many thanks for sharing this. Cheers.