Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Generosity of Others

Kevin Comptin is a incredible fly tier I have had the pleasure of meeting several times over the years.  I have incorporated many of his innovative designs and tying techniques into my own fly tying.  Unlike some in the industry he is always willing to share ideas and help others better their fly tying.

Right before the holidays I had the opportunity to speak to him over the phone.  We spent almost an hour discussing fly fishing and fly tying.  During the course of that conversation he commented on a pattern I had posted last month.  He observed that I got the pattern close but was a little off on identifying some of the materials.  He graciously explained his exact tying methods as well as providing a detailed description of the materials used.  While speaking to Kevin at the Fly Tying Symposium he handed me the fly fresh out of his vice simply saying "give this a try".  The fly looked very promising so I set off to recreate it the best I could.  Since Kevin never told me the name of the fly I was left to my own devices to give it a name.  This was the pattern dubbed the "Copper Bead" by a friend due to it's prominent oversized copper tungsten bead.  I have fished the fly every time I have been out since tying them up and it has been a top producer.

I am happy to say that I now have the pattern's proper name and the exact pattern recipe.  In fact Kevin was kind enough to send me a sample of the tungsten wire dubbing brush as a well as a sample of the actual dubbing used to create the body.

As I mentioned earlier I was a little off in the material selection when I recreated this pattern, but the version I tied proved quite effective none the less.  I am very pleased that I will now be able to reproduce the pattern as it was meant to be tied.  Though, as Kevin pointed out, all of this business of exact patterns doesn't amount to a hill of beans.  It's all about sharing information; be it fly patterns, new materials or innovative techniques.  As Kevin eloquently stated in a recent correspondence "In the wild end, it's friends, not fish, that matter.", true words indeed.

So with out further rambling...

The Brush Hog

The Brush Hog as it was meant to be tied:

Hook:  DOHIKU nymph hook (size 6-8 if my notes were correct)
Bead:  3/16" copper tungsten
Ribbing:  Fly DK pearl
Tail:  Coq De Leon fibers
Abdomen:  Tungsten wire dubbing brush  made with a mixture of red fox squirrel, lite brite, and copper flash mixed (very sparse)
Thorax:  Black seal

If you plan on visiting the Fly Fishing Show in Somerset, NJ next week stop by and check out Kevin's table, you won't be disappointed!  If your looking for the DOHIKU hooks Kevin is the only supplier I am aware of you can grab them at his site Performance Flies.


  1. Super nice! No wonder it produces! I think we've pretty much decided (meaning, flyfishers as a whole) that those beads don't bother the fish very much at all in most cases. That is a very nice looking fly.

  2. Very nice fly. I am going to tie me a few of those.

  3. Very nice tie! do you mind sharing which shade of coq de leon you used?

  4. do you mind sharing which shade of coq de leon you used