Streamside | DIY Shake Fly Floatant via Living Fly Legacy

by | May 8, 2017 | 3 comments

A few years ago I took a chance and bought thirty-two ounces of powdered, fumed silica from an ebay seller.

“What the hell is that?” You might ask.

It’s the fine, white powder used for drying flies and keeping them riding high on the surface. The ebay listing came with an assurance that the stuff was just like the Frog’s Fanny we buy in fly shops. It was. And it still is. Even after gifting many of my friends with small bags of the magic powder, and re-filling my own bottle countless times, I still have half the quart left.

Each season I end up losing the bottle somewhere on the river or in transit, so I go to my fly shop and buy another bottle of Frog’s Fanny that I refill with the quart when it’s empty. Sure, I could probably find a ten-pack of empty bottles with little brushes on the caps real cheap on ebay too. But I feel like I better pay it forward once in a while to the fly shops and the people who came up with the idea in the first place. So yeah, I’m cheap, but not that cheap.

Chris Cutler writes the blog, Living Fly Legacy, and it’s one of my favorites for a lot of reasons. I like that Chris night fishes, and he thinks outside the box. I particularly like his point that night fishing with mice is a sham (check that one out). But I digress. I like Chris’s creativity and his do-it-yourself independence.

So I was pleasantly surprised to see that Chris had also bought way too much white powder in a bulk container. But he took it a step further. In his latest blog post, Chris details how to make your own little shaky dry fly bottle with all the powder and pebble pieces needed to suck your flies dry and get back to fishing the surface. Nice.

Here’s the article link.

Open container — insert damp fly here. And the DIY holster. — Photos from Chris Cutler

And here are some excerpts:

… The material is called fumed silica. It is a common additive in epoxies as a thickening agent. It is remarkably hydrophobic.

… The next thing you will need is some Silica Gel (balls). This is usually easy to come by if you know where to look.

… The last thing you need is some type of container. I chose an old film canister. It was the perfect size.

In characteristic form, Chris lays out the whole thing and makes it easy to do-it-yourself too. Good stuff.

Thanks, Chris.

Enjoy the day.
Domenick Swentosky
T R O U T B I T T E N
domenick@troutbitten.com

Share This Article . . .

Since 2014 and 600 articles deep
Troutbitten is a free resource for all anglers
Your support is greatly appreciated

– Explore These Post Tags –

Domenick Swentosky

Central Pennsylvania

Hi. I’m a father of two young boys, a husband, author, fly fishing guide and a musician. I fish for wild brown trout in the cool limestone waters of Central Pennsylvania year round. This is my home, and I love it. Friends. Family. And the river.

More from this Category

Acquire Your Target Before the Pickup

Acquire Your Target Before the Pickup

Accuracy. It’s an elementary casting principle, but it’s the hardest thing to deliver. Wild trout are unforgiving. So the errant cast that lands ten inches to the right of a shade line passes without interest. As river anglers, our task is a complicated one, because we must be accurate not only with the fly to the target, but also with the tippet. Wherever the leader lands, the fly follows. Accuracy holds a complexity that is not for the faint of heart. But here’s one tip that guarantees immediate improvement right away.

Be the Heron

Be the Heron

We can learn much about wading a river for trout by observing the heron. Take time to watch these compelling predators — these master hunters of the river. Because the lessons of incomparable stealth are unforgettable once you’ve seen them . . .

The Spooky Trout: Find Their Blind Spot

The Spooky Trout: Find Their Blind Spot

Understand that trout can’t turn their heads, and they don’t look behind themselves casually.

And from a fisherman’s perspective, as one who has spent decades accidentally scaring the fish I intended to catch, I assure you that the best way to approach a trout is from behind . . .

Part Two: What you’re missing by following FIPS competition rules — Leader Restrictions

Part Two: What you’re missing by following FIPS competition rules — Leader Restrictions

Leader length restrictions unnecessarily limit the common angler from taking full advantage of tight line systems. Such rules force the angler to compensate with different lines, rods and tactics. And none of it is as efficient as a long, pure Mono Rig that’s attached to a standard fly line on the reel. Here’s a deep dive on the limitations of using shorter leaders and comp or euro lines.

Are You Spooking Trout?

Are You Spooking Trout?

All trout continuously adapt to their surroundings — they learn what to expect, and they spook from the unexpected.

So, stealth on the water and understanding what spooks a trout is foundational knowledge in fly fishing. Trout are easily scared. Are you spooking fish?

What do you think?

Be part of the Troutbitten community of ideas.
Be helpful. And be nice.

3 Comments

  1. There are many varieties of fumed silica. I did a bunch of research a few years ago and found what I believe to be the best formulation (Cab-o-Sil TS-270) for our needs. And I found it availble for $10/qt plus shipping here:

    http://www.eplastics.com/m/mobile.html?item=31822

    Reply
  2. Doh: Can-O-Sil TS-720. I mistyped in the above comment.

    Reply
    • Thanks for the reference, Mark! I have another friend who is particular about the type as well. I only bought the stuff once, and I must have gotten lucky. Thanks for sharing your research. Very helpful to everyone.

      Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Recent Articles

Recent Posts

Domenick Swentosky

Central Pennsylvania

Hi. I’m a father of two young boys, a husband, author, fly fishing guide and a musician. I fish for wild brown trout in the cool limestone waters of Central Pennsylvania year round. This is my home, and I love it. Friends. Family. And the river.

Pin It on Pinterest