Salmon Fly size calculator

Jimmcl

Well-known member
Messages
170
Reaction score
444
Location
Somerset
Many years ago - probably 25 - Trout & salmon gave away a circular salmon fly/tube size calculator. You dialled in water temperature, colour, height etc and it gave you a suggested fly size from which to start proceedings. I lost mine in one of many house moves, and it struck me that an app for a mobile phone that did the same thing would be pretty useful. If anyone has one of them about and can scan the various rings into a jpg file, I'd happily try & get something put together.
 

Bucktail Bob

New member
Banned
Messages
2,768
Reaction score
3
i'm not sure you could generalize it as simply as that, what size you would use the Tay compared to a small spate river would be two different things all together unless you took into the app small, med and large rivers then it altered it slightly.
I think i would use my own judgement but that doesn't mean it couldn't be a good thing for most anglers.
Why is it only flies we are so particular about with size , can't say i heard a wormer say he is using tiny worms due to the conditions
 

pete

Well-known member
Messages
1,298
Reaction score
71
i'm not sure you could generalize it as simply as that, what size you would use the Tay compared to a small spate river would be two different things all together unless you took into the app small, med and large rivers then it altered it slightly.
I think i would use my own judgement but that doesn't mean it couldn't be a good thing for most anglers.
Why is it only flies we are so particular about with size , can't say i heard a wormer say he is using tiny worms due to the conditions

Back when I used to worm a lot I'd often chance tactics depending on water height and clarity, big water big bunch of worms, low clear water light line single blackhead and as little lead shot as you could get away with... Worming is probably one of the most skillfull methods out there...
 

silverleapers

New member
Messages
1,442
Reaction score
1
Location
Newfoundland and Labrador
I can't decide on this 3 inch rapal or a size 10 or a size 6 fly?? LOL

Funny stuff....fresh fish = throw your rotten socks at them and they will eat it in a 3 foot deep pool at 6m3/sec (and 160m3/sec @ 10 feet deep) and at 13C and 20C water. Foolishness 99% of the time.

Now, less than daisy fresh fish.....well that is another matter.

Cheers;
SL
 
Last edited:

Jack Holroyd

Well-known member
Messages
1,730
Reaction score
102
Location
west highlands
The thing about that calculator was that is was set for the Dee style flies of the 1960's; all tying inside the bend of the fly. It was absolute crap.The flies we use today are far longer, even in low water,(and far more effective) than in the ,so called , greased line days. A size 12 hook tied as a cascade, would be a 1 1/2 inch tube in old money. HEY HO, if it works................
 

miramichi

Active member
Messages
1,985
Reaction score
1
Over on the Miramichi we're closer to the greased line days than my brothers back in bonny Scotland, but of course our water is much warmer. I hate to make it sound more complicated than it is, but to me picking the right size and perhaps pattern of fly is to a very large degree a sense that one can only develop over time out on the river. The depth, speed and temperature of the water, the time of the year, freshness of the fish one is likely presenting too, and atmospheric conditions you are fishing in all combine to suggest a likely fly to the experienced fisherman. You may not be right, but you may well have a back-up strategy too. All the guesses are educated ones based on experience. It would be impossible to design a card to stand in for that kind of knowledge.
 

Jimmcl

Well-known member
Messages
170
Reaction score
444
Location
Somerset
Over on the Miramichi we're closer to the greased line days than my brothers back in bonny Scotland, but of course our water is much warmer. I hate to make it sound more complicated than it is, but to me picking the right size and perhaps pattern of fly is to a very large degree a sense that one can only develop over time out on the river. The depth, speed and temperature of the water, the time of the year, freshness of the fish one is likely presenting too, and atmospheric conditions you are fishing in all combine to suggest a likely fly to the experienced fisherman. You may not be right, but you may well have a back-up strategy too. All the guesses are educated ones based on experience. It would be impossible to design a card to stand in for that kind of knowledge.


The point of the T&S calculator was to give a starting point, not a definitive fly/tube size. And, even in those dark ages, we still used tubes with long tails. The overall size suggested was length, not a particular hook size.
 
Last edited:

Bucktail Bob

New member
Banned
Messages
2,768
Reaction score
3
Back when I used to worm a lot I'd often chance tactics depending on water height and clarity, big water big bunch of worms, low clear water light line single blackhead and as little lead shot as you could get away with... Worming is probably one of the most skillfull methods out there...

I can understand using less but it's hardly like you are as obsessed with the length of worm you stick on the hook a fly fisherman can fly into a panic because the guy the next pool down got his fish on a size 15 and to their horror the smallest they have is a 13 which of course the salmon can tell the difference between, i right i'm sure it can!
 

miramichi

Active member
Messages
1,985
Reaction score
1
The point of the T&S calculator was to give a starting point, not a definitive fly/tube size. And, even in those dark ages, we still used tubes with long tails. The overall size suggested was length, not a particular hook size.

I'm sure the card has value, and running off a few would be worthwhile. I'd like to have had something like it when I started, and it would still be fun to read. Had been having a wee nip when I wrote that and was contemplating how difficult it can be at times to make the right decisions when salmon fishing...:eek:
 

Iolar

Member
Messages
316
Reaction score
3
From solihullflydressers.co.uk




Overall fly size in mm versus temperature

Combine that with fly colour/hook size versus season



What else do you need? :D
 
Last edited:

DafyddHumphreys

New member
Messages
259
Reaction score
2
Location
Gwaun Cae Gurwen
From solihullflydressers.co.uk




Overall fly size in mm versus temperature

Combine that with fly colour/hook size versus season



What else do you need? :D

Thanks for them. It's a good place to start for us newbies and can adjust and record accordingly then for future knowledge/reference.
 

cullet

Member
Messages
145
Reaction score
24
Location
St Helens
l have a calculator here.but unable to send pics at the momment. lt is out of SALMON TROUT &SEA-TROUT.to start off you set the water temp then the height,speed of current,colour of water then you read the size of fly hook,tube fly or spinning bait size. must be an antique by now.
 

Newly From The Sea

New member
Messages
558
Reaction score
0
Location
Eden Valley
4 anglers 4 different sizes.

If you had access to a good beat over say 4 seasons that has plenty of fish, it would be an interesting excercise to fish 2 of the seasons with 1 fly size only say a 1/2" tube.
and the other 2 with normal variety of sizes and see what the catch ratios would be.

I suspect little real difference...
what it might do is make us think more about how we fish the fly to cope with the conditions.
 

YoungRyan

New member
Messages
517
Reaction score
7
Location
Limavady
I think there is a bit of a business oppertunity here. If i was a boffin in App building I would create an app that used these caluclations and took into account all variables to suggest size AND (given that it uses water clarity) colour of fly. 69p a pop on the App Store and im sure all to many of us gullible anglers would fall for it. :eek:
 

hurricane

Active member
Messages
2,370
Reaction score
6
I think there is a bit of a business oppertunity here. If i was a boffin in App building I would create an app that used these caluclations and took into account all variables to suggest size AND (given that it uses water clarity) colour of fly. 69p a pop on the App Store and im sure all to many of us gullible anglers would fall for it. :eek:

I know anglers who fish size six ed's for grisle and do as well as anybody else.

For grisle I generally fish an 8, failing that I throw on a 10. No calculator needed.
 

Jimmcl

Well-known member
Messages
170
Reaction score
444
Location
Somerset
4 anglers 4 different sizes.

If you had access to a good beat over say 4 seasons that has plenty of fish, it would be an interesting excercise to fish 2 of the seasons with 1 fly size only say a 1/2" tube.
and the other 2 with normal variety of sizes and see what the catch ratios would be.

I suspect little real difference...
what it might do is make us think more about how we fish the fly to cope with the conditions.

I think that AHE Wood did this one year at Cairnton, and there was little difference to his catches one year to the next. Mind you, he did catch more than 100 fish a year I think
 

borano20

New member
Messages
22
Reaction score
0
Calculator..

Hello.. The T&S calculator,in paper,was a copy from the Hardy "Arkless" which was made from plastic. It is certainly NOT the truth,but a guide. VERY useful the any tyro on the river.. No,the old hands obviously don´t need one. After 10+ years by the river,the former tyros don´t need it,either.. But until then,they must start somewhere. Yours borano20
 

Benmerlot

New member
Messages
482
Reaction score
1
Blue charm for wood.caught over 300 to 400 one season.only two or three rods fishing the beat.hundreds of fish lying in the pools but there were lots of hatcheries on the Dee in those days!!(that is the truth about the hatcheries by the way).anyway thanks to the netting being promoted by salmond and others the greenlanders are about to start netting again so check your rainbow trout flies instead.
 

SP8

Well-known member
Messages
3,263
Reaction score
87
Location
North Yorkshire
Blue charm for wood.caught over 300 to 400 one season.only two or three rods fishing the beat.hundreds of fish lying in the pools but there were lots of hatcheries on the Dee in those days!!(that is the truth about the hatcheries by the way).anyway thanks to the netting being promoted by salmond and others the greenlanders are about to start netting again so check your rainbow trout flies instead.
Don't know about the hatcheries but I've no reason to believe they were any more useful then than they are now. The Dee was not the only river stuffed with fish in those days. More significant would be the lack of high seas netting, pre- UDN and spawning areas that weren't degraded and blocked to the extent they subsequently became.

SP8
 

Benmerlot

New member
Messages
482
Reaction score
1
Don't know about the hatcheries but I've no reason to believe they were any more useful then than they are now. The Dee was not the only river stuffed with fish in those days. More significant would be the lack of high seas netting, pre- UDN and spawning areas that weren't degraded and blocked to the extent they subsequently became.

SP8

And lack of feeding,predator control etc.we could go on forever
 

Webster

Administrator
Messages
40
Reaction score
0
I love using tiny flies (< 2cm total length) and I'm always surprised that a big salmon would bother themselves with one - but they do.

Here is a first stab at an online fly size calculator designed for floating line - summer fishing. It is based on the tables given by Falkus and Richard Waddington with a bit of A H E Wood thrown in.

Hope it helps - but it's only a guide and bit of fun. (and subject to change & bugs!)

Salmon Fly Size Calculator
 
Top