Sexyloops fly tying school part 6 - Klinkhamer

Sexyloops fly tying school part 6 - Klinkhamer

t.z. | Friday, 13 November 2015

Friday again - SFTS day. Section 6 … we are stepping up the game a few notches. The famous Klinkhamer. Some say it was sort of a revolution in fly design. Even though halv of the fly is submerged, it´s a dry fly. Even purists agree, I hope.

Anyway - you will benefit fully from the modules and techniques we have covered so far - so fear not. You (not Paul though) will master this terribly complex pattern without any problems.

The Klinkhamer is quite a general type of pattern. It is made to imitate a hatching insect. Hatching insects do have a specific appearance. The nymph body is sort of hanging off the water surface film whereas the flying insect is crawling out of it´s old shell. An amazing and very dramatic „birth“.

Predators love such drama for a simple reason - their prey is momentarily stuck and can not escape too easy. An easy meal, easy to identify too because the body hanging under the water film does reflect in the film like in a mirror. So when looking at the fly from under one can see two bodies. The original and it´s reflection. Such rarely happens with other objects in or on the water.

The dutch fly-fisher Hans van Klinken tried to imitate this impression and came up with pretty interesting design. The story is that he had the idea for the fly when fishing the Glomma River in Norway for Grayling (they grow big there - Bernd got one with 1,8kg this summer). So one evening when their fishing party felt the need to give his creation a name they put part of Hans family name and the Norwegian word „hamer“ (hammer) together. One can also simply call it a parachute emerger.

Parachute is the key word here. Other than the conventional version the hackle is not wound around the hook. It is wound around a „wing-post“ over the hook. This poses a few problems in the construction, specifically when using rather thick thread. By the time Hans invented the fly new, thinner threads came in to use for fly tying. So be careful and use very thin thread for that and other parachute flies.

I agree with Bob Wyatt though - this fly is difficult to tie, but for me that is a challenge I like. However, don´t worry - we´ll get to much easier emerger patterns. I just showed this one for a) it is a classic and really fishes well and b) you can use the modules we have covered before. 

The tying steps:

the materials needed
Hook: Partridge 15BN, 15BN - Grizzly Hackle - Peacock herl - Thread (14/0) - Fly-rite dubbing - Antron yarn - Varnish

fix the hook in the vice and starte the thread
(a very large hook used for demonstration purposes)

tie in a strand of antron yarn

tie the yarn on to the hook and cut it in an angle to form a nicely shaped underbody

dub the thread and start dubding at the top of the fly (reversed dubbing)

dubbed body

wind the thread in open turns over the dubbing reinforcing the fly

tie in the hackle feather as shown


take 3 or 4 peacock herl strands and tie them in in front of the wingpost
wind the around the thread (this you have seen before) - ref part 3/4/5 of the SFTS

Now the tricky bit many get wrong - to construct a parachute hackle one needs a stable post to
wind the hackle around. I use the peacock herl/thread rope to do this.

start three turn behinde the wingpost and work you way towards it

Than tie the peacock herl in front of the wingpost to push it upwards.
Don´t be afraid to pull real hard and so stabilising the wingpost.
The wingpost is sort of "trapped" / "squeezed" by the peacock herl.

Now turn the hook so the wingpost is horizontal.

wind the pacock herl around the wingpost to further stabilise it
secure with a few turns of thread and a whip finish (optional)
and a drop of varnish (optional)

the result is a nice wingpost with a collar stopping the hackle from sliding upwards 

From here on proceed like you would tie a normal hackle as you have done before
The only difference is that you wind towards the bottom of the wingpost

and finish with a whip finish under the hackle instead of in front

Now trim the wingpost and snip of the thread 
and debarb the hook (I forgot it in the beginning)



The finished fly - the Klinhamer

Klinkhamer Special

picture by Al Pyke

Thomas Züllich, or - “t.z.” as most call him - is a German flyfisher & flytier living in Norway. His flydressing is based on old traditions as well as very modern and innovative methods of creating flies. You can book Thomas for guided trips, flytying classes and presentations. He regularly gives speeches and demonstrations at fly fishing fairs. Thomas is member of the ProTeam at Partridge of Redditch as well as Regal Vises.

Sexyloops Fly Tying School - next: needs 

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