Classic Video: How to Tie the Hi-Vis Coachman

I wrote about the Hi-Vis Coachman back in 2011, in a post called “My Favorite Dry Fly for Mountain Brook Trout,” and I was excited to see that Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions had chosen the pattern as the subject for his latest how-to video. Then I watched the video and was humbled by how much better than mine Tim’s tying method and final product are. Grrr.

Of course, the fly is really not my invention at all. All I did was combine aspects of other patterns—the Royal Coachman and the Comparadun—and add some color. What I was trying to achieve was a fly that would stay afloat yet still ride in the film and would be visible in that magic hour just before dark on a summer night. You can also see this fly when it’s riding through whitewater. I use various colors for the wing and tail—pink, orange, and white—and find different colors easier to see in different conditions.

In this easy-to-follow video, Flagler offers several ingenious ways to make the fly easier to tie and more durable. His use of superglue to hold the deer-hair wing in place is a simple solution to the problem of slippery materials. I also dig the way he uses the thread to control the peacock herl and the hackle as he wraps them.

          Hi-Vis Coachman
          Hook: 1X-long dry-fly hook (here a Dai-Riki #300), size 14.
          Thread: Black, 6/0.
          Adhesive: Superglue.
          Wing: Fluorescent chartreuse deer-body hair, cleaned and stacked.
          Tails: Fluorescent chartreuse deer-body hair, cleaned and stacked.
          Body: Peacock herl.
          Hackle: Grizzly rooster saddle hackle, clipped on the bottom.
          Head: Tying thread.
          Accent band: Red tying thread, 70-denier or 8/0.
          Final adhesive: Head cement.
          Tools: Sharp scissors, hackle stacker, whip-finisher.

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