Quonnie

Flat Wings

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So I have used surf candy fom the beach a lot, I see and have flatwings, but when do you toss them? They seem like a big fly to throw from the surf? I use a 9 wt and I am wondering do you need a bigger wt fly rod? What length Leader/tippet. Do you ever weight the flatwing flies or use a poly leader with them? I fish primarily the beaches etc in RI. 

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How are you looking to fish them - Abrames (sp) style or essentially as a deceiver type?  
 

tied properly, they are long but sparse so a 9 sb fine for them.

 

There is quite a bit more that I could say about them but I don’t have the time right now. I can circle back later if others don’t respond. 

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check out Stripers and Streamers by Ray Bonderew most of your questions will be answered . I typically fished ray's fly in tandem estuary fishing in current given your site name you must have some experience in that. good spot for that in the spring during outgoing wade as far as you can to the channel and swing them or stalk some on the flat at night keep an eye and ear open and walk to you find them 

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9 mins ago, Quonnie said:

Well not sure to be very honest 

I do not know the difference in styles quite frankly 

I can give you some info later when I get home from work. 

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If you go to my website you'll find all kinds of information on flatwings and how to tie and fish them. ("Trout fishing for stripers" is a good place to start for the latter).

 

It is a common misconception that flatwings are by default large. I fish flatwings that are over a foot long. I fish flatwings that are two inches long. There are many patterns to match a plethora of bait, from clam worms to sand eels to silversides to big herring and bunker and eels.

 

No one's going throw you in jail for adding weight to a flatwing, but doing so defeats the purpose of the style -- which as Ken said, is to "swim and look alive just like the baitfish." Use sink tips if you must.

 

BTW, I fish flatwings over a foot long with my five weight. Properly tied, big flatwings fish large and cast small. :-)

 

Hope that helps,

 

Steve Culton

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Steve I have been to your website and that is what got me interested 

I hsve tied a bunch just never threw them Mostly 1 feathers on Tarpon hooks I am going to give them a go for tarpon as well 

i am so used to surf candy etc I just did Not have the confidence to try them but I will now especially on the flats 
I have found dead drifting surf candy in white water Around rocks to be very effective would you could you do the same with flat wings 

 

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Hi Quonnie,

 

Good to hear you've been poking around. See if you can find some Eagle Claw 253 hooks, the classic hook for this classic template. You could absolutely do the same thing with flatwings as you're doing with your SCs. The best way to learn how to use them is to go out and do it. The stripers will tell you when you get it right. :-)

 

Always happy to help and answer questions.

 

Here's one of my own heavily influenced by Ken and Ray and Jack.

 

 

Steve Culton

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Have you seen any of Ken’s books? They’re hard to come by but well worth it. 
 

I would say flat wings are more than just a pattern, it’s also a way of fishing/presenting them. Lots of salmon trout type techniques. You’re trying to make a realistic presentation to a fish. 
 

I have fished them in the traditional sense along with basic cast and retrieve. Many times, for me, it was a hybrid type technique. Most of my fishing with them was in NJ, at ibsp. Mainly the inlet and back portions. Lots of current to swing a drift flies but also lots of deep structure as well. 
 

The patterns themselves are fun to try and they are sure as hell an attractive fly too. 

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Some really good answers and advice above.I will add that when you're casting a wet flatwing fly it is tied sparsely dressed and will collapse into a thin shape, sometimes not much more bulky than the line your are casting it with. No need to add weight, and as mentioned above weight would hinder some of its most effective presentations. Look up "greased line swing" or "greased line presentation". Ray Bondorew's book "Stripers and Streamers" and Steve Culton's blogs are also well worth reading on the subject. 

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A Rhody Flatwing in the 3-4" range has been one of my go to mid season flies for the last 15 years or so. I fish em on 7 and 8 wts. Sometimes in tandem with a  Rays Fly.   Proportionally  tied, they are no worse to cast than a Deceiver.  

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15 mins ago, Quonnie said:

I wonder if dead drifting them would work in the white water and around rocks I have had success with Surf Candy and other bait fish imitations

Yes it will work. I have done that many times. 

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You can fish non flat wing flies in the same manner. The various presentations would work with any unweighted fly (again, if adhering to traditional methods). 

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