Starling Hackle

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billems
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Starling Hackle

Post by billems » Fri Apr 23, 2021 4:22 pm

I can tie flies with starling hackle, but I don't like working with the stuff. It's flimsy, breaks off all the time, and I find it hard to make a good looking wrap with it. How does one judge starling hackle. Perhaps I didn't get a good one. Any thoughts? I'm dreaming of just going back to black hen hackle.
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ForumGhillie
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Re: Starling Hackle

Post by ForumGhillie » Fri Apr 23, 2021 5:57 pm

Welcome to the Flymph Forum.

I really enjoy using starling feathers, it has great movement in the water. You just have to be careful winding it around the hook shank.

I am sure others will chime in.
DUBBN
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Re: Starling Hackle

Post by DUBBN » Fri Apr 23, 2021 6:02 pm

billems wrote: Fri Apr 23, 2021 4:22 pm I can tie flies with starling hackle, but I don't like working with the stuff. It's flimsy, breaks off all the time, and I find it hard to make a good looking wrap with it. How does one judge starling hackle. Perhaps I didn't get a good one. Any thoughts? I'm dreaming of just going back to black hen hackle.
I switched to Black Hen hackle years ago and never looked back. I dont think the fish care.
Updtate
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Re: Starling Hackle

Post by Updtate » Fri Apr 23, 2021 8:32 pm

Starling Hackle and wings made of Starling primaries make beautiful flies. Keep trying with it you will succeed .You will develop a touch and when you accomplish this you will have become a better flytier for it.

Tom
Mike62
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Re: Starling Hackle

Post by Mike62 » Sat Apr 24, 2021 6:23 am

I know the fish don't care, but I do. I want to be the best well-rounded tyer I can be; that means mastering Starling. Ever heard of Sisyphus? That's me; always dropping the same rock on my head. Enhance your calm, drink no coffee, mumble something like this: "Vande gurunam charanaravinde" - let it out slow. I may never get there, but you might. Don't give in to the pedestrian black hen!
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redietz
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Re: Starling Hackle

Post by redietz » Sat Apr 24, 2021 7:27 am

Use as small a hackle pliers as possible. And unless you're tying Stewart black spiders, tie in by the tip and leave "tip" between the hook and where the barbs start to flair out to make one complete wrap.
Bob
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Ron Eagle Elk
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Re: Starling Hackle

Post by Ron Eagle Elk » Sat Apr 24, 2021 7:32 am

When I started tying the "wee wets" 20 something years ago, I had the same problem. No matter how I tied the feather in, either the tip or stem would break. I tried every hackle pliers known to man. Turns out it was just me and my heavy handed ways. I ruined many a feather, but today, Starling is a favorite hackle to tie with. I love the shiny, iridescent quality of the feather. Keep at it, you'll develop the touch.
"A man may smile and bid you hale yet curse you to the devil, but when a good dog wags his tail he is always on the level"
DOUGSDEN
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Re: Starling Hackle

Post by DOUGSDEN » Sun Apr 25, 2021 11:29 am

Billems,
These guys are spot on in their offerings of advice to you! One thing that starling has that black hen (hen in general) does not is its softness of fiber! I like to think of it as collapsibility of fiber! Younger hen has this property but the fibers seem to get stiffer as the bird gets older!
Definitely learn the fine art of soft handing these beautiful hackles! Also, get a pair of Dorin brand teardrop hackle pliers! They are outstanding with their small, pointed tips and strong grip!
Hope it helps,
Doug
Fish when you can, not when you should! Anything short of this is just a disaster.
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Theroe
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Re: Starling Hackle

Post by Theroe » Mon Apr 26, 2021 9:52 am

Use your FINGERS- For me this works better than just about any hackle plier because they’re mostly too heavy. I have a small bulldog clip with that Winnie Dette gave me along time ago.....It’s probably the best hackle plier I have.

Dana
Soft and wet - the only way....
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