Fly tying photos (#flytying #kebari #flypatterns)

While I’ve another three months before the fishing season begins again, I have been thinking about early spring fishing. Maybe it’s the snow storm of the past couple of days (which didn’t even amount to half of what was predicted) or the -8°F (-22°C) today. Regardless, early spring fishing usually means going deep for the first few weeks if I want to catch anything.

  1. I got some new tungsten beads and was playing around with some ideas. Any thoughts or opinions?

  1. If you have read or looked at the Discover Tenkara book, “How to Fool Fish with Simple Flies” this next one may look familiar. This is my newest interpretation of Ajari’s (Kazumi Saigo) bead head. This is an excellent pattern that I used a lot last year. The one I tied last year used a silver colored tungsten bead instead of the pink on here.

  1. This is a slightly different variation that I was playing with after the first one above.


Those look very nice Peder.

I use beads a lot, although if I want weight I tend to use brass, although lighter, they are much cheaper. I buy mine from Poland.
I also like glass seed beads (the silver lined variety) which are very cheap but effective,they are even lighter.

Thanks, David. I fish with beads a lot too. My guess is maybe 40-45% of the time I use something with beads. Whilst tungsten beads are getting less expensive, you’re correct, they are more so than brass. Though, admittedly, the most recent ones I got were a pre-order package deal and I got them for only pennies more than brass and got enough to last me several years at a minimum.

I’ve seen your frequent posts about the silver lined seed beads. It was actually your talking about them that got me to try some out. I have three or four colors and oddly had poor luck with them; not sure why.

I don’t know about you, but when fishing is not going well with a new fly (or a fly with new/different material), I usually revert to something I am comfortable with and with which I’ve had success. I realize this creates a vicious cycle that reinforces itself (or at least can reinforce itself). Though every season, I try and explore at least three new rivers during the season and try one new fly/kebari at least once per week. I rather enjoy tying and fishing with different flies/kebari and have found some of my favorites because of this. I could never be a “one fly/kebari” type of fisherman.


I know what you mean Peder about ‘inventing’ new flies. I do it all the time but very few of them ever make the grade. Even so I get a lot of enjoyment from tying them and day dreaming about how this is ‘the one’.
If ever I am stuck, or overcome by the ridiculous number of flies/kebari patterns I carry, my go-to is usually a Sawyer Pheasant Tail Nymph.
I hear what you say about the silver lined glass beads, if you haven’t already got the colour then try the crystal clear silver lined beads, which really do replicate an air bubble. I collect American Fly tying books, usually hard copies and kindle versions. A favourite author of mine is Pat Dorsey of Colorado. It was he, who created the ‘Mercury’ series of patterns using the silver lined glass beads.

As you gather I too am not a one fly person.

I completely agree.

Hahaha, this sounds like me at times. For me, my go-to has always been the peacock and partridge.

Thanks for the tip. I do not have the silver lined crystal ones. I have forest green, red, purple, and I think lime green. There is a craft shop about 4 miles from my work that sells them for ridiculously cheap prices. Something like $2 US for 5g or $3.50 US for 10g.


@davidsr I was just reminded about the one fly that I did have luck with using a silver lined seed bead. Makes me want to reconsider and try that one again this upcoming year.

You can actually see a photo of it thanks to @Nick_Pavlovski. He posted it here (Thanks Peder!) where it’s hard to miss. It’s the one with the green bead with Brahma hen hackle and Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift body in the middle of the top row.



Tell me what the body is made of kebari?

Vladimir, I was wondering the same thing.
Wondering if it might be fusion tape body.
Or possibly wood, colored with water proof marker.

I do not recall what the material is called, a Japanese named and used material.
But I have some of it. Long paper then wood shaving, used by chefs.

I have an old Sebata video, in the video he ties a kebari - wrapping the body of the kebari with this wood material.
I have a picture somewhere of a kebari I tied using that wood material. I will post it later if I can find it or have not deleted it. Or maybe tie a new one, and post a picture of it. The picture may be on my other computer.

update: I recalled the name of the wood material.
檜 経木紐 [ Hinoki kyōgi himo] Cypress wood shavings string.
Or writen as ひのききょうぎひも

Some examples:

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David, it will be interesting to see. I like to try new materials, it is interesting.

檜 経木紐 ボディ毛鉤 [ hinoki kyōgi himo bodi kebari]

This one was not colored. But I do recall coloring some of them with Uni Posca markers.
I think I also wrapped on electrical self fusing tape first.

I do not know if this was a popular material to use 30 years ago, when the Sebata video was made. Or if was only a material he tried. He tied a kebari on the video using the hinoki kyōgi string. My guess people at the time who watched the video also tried it. But it seems to have fallen out of favor. This example was not tied very well. Maybe I can tie new colored ones later.


Here are a couple of screen shots from the Sebata video. You can see he used self fusing tape on them as well. The video was an old video tape - not as clear as screen shots off a modern digital video.




His “Kebari” is his own

Self-bonding tape “Kebari” is not a common thing either

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It’s just thread body, I’m still learning to tie so they are a bit sloppy.

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Ah, some types of threads do lay flat, if not twisted, and can look like a different material.

I have seen flies people have wrapped with colored cellophane that also had a similar appearance.
A friend has a talent for finding and using odd discarded materials for fly bodies. Fibers from packing tapes, etc. What some people call - Trash Flies. No not the flies around your trash. Flies tied from stuff normally thrown into the trash.

Oh, earlier I forgot to mention that the hinoki kyōgi himo body kebari. if left uncolored, bare wood, takes on an interesting brown color when wet. They might also have the mouth feel of a crunchy bug in a fish’s mouth.


The store liked the shape of the hook and their color. I decided to try to tie kebari. There was a difficulty with cutting the feather, it is difficult to cut it smoothly. Well, I made two simpler ones.


Those are very nice, I really like those hooks too.

Four 檜 経木紐 ボディ毛鉤 [ hinoki kyōgi himo bodi kebari] I tied last evening.

Two with the hinoki kyōgi himo left bare wood. The one on the left was dipped in water. It becomes a little bit transparent when wet, the color of the thread below it shows through. You can’t really see in the photo, but the wood shaving also becomes a bit darker brown.


Two more that I colored with Uni Posca Marker. I like the uncolored ones more.

However, the Posca markers are pretty color fast in water, the colors do no fade very much or not at all. In the past I have colored kebari wrapped with white or nearly white thread, of cotton or silk thread. An idea I once saw in a video of couple of Japanese tenkara anglers fishing. They were not catching many fish with the white body kebari. So they colored the body of the kebari red, to see if their catch rate increased. It did. But who knows maybe the change in color helped or maybe it was just coincidence they caught more fish afterwards.

Sorry for these photos being unsharp. I could not find my camera tripod, and it is difficult to hold the camera steady in hand taking up close photos.


The hinoki kyōgi himo material is kind of an interesting body wrapping material. I think it was not a particularly successful material to use, otherwise people would still be using it. The hinoki kyōgi himo feels something like corn husks. Each piece is about 1/2inch (13mm) in width, and it works better to cut off narrow strips (~2mm) of it to wrap round the hook shank.

It was something Sebata Yuzo demonstrated in tenkara video made 25 or so years ago. In which he also tied kebari using self-fusing silicon tape. He is still tying kebari with the tape, but I haven’t seen any recent examples of hinoki kyōgi himo body kebari.

I have caught fish with the ones I have tied with hinoki kyōgi himo. Just something new to try - for fun variation of trying out an old idea.

The hooks used are Firehole Sticks, # 419, size 12.


Thanks David, interesting stuff, I liked the wood structure.AC_SL1500

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Vladimir, is that a bag of hinoki kyōgi?
Mostly I see hinoki kyōgi string sold in bundles, it is straight, about 52cm long.
And very thin. As thin as tissue, or plastic shopping bag.
If the wood shavings you have turn out to be to thick to wrap onto the hook.
I can mail a few pieces to you. I have more than I will ever use. I have only tied a few flies with hinoki kyōgi string.

An experiment just to see what it was like, to see if it would work. Maybe to a fish it would feel like a crunchy bug.

Is it still very cold where you live? Rivers still covered with ice?
Even where I live it was very warm today, 72˚F, but by morning snow flurries predicted and 42˚F tomorrow.