Hair Stacking and Other Applicable Stuff - Global FlyFisher

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Hair Stacking and Other Applicable Stuff


Hand Stacking

Intro
Understanding hair
Hair scales
Stackers
Stacking
Deer, Elk and Moose
Calf Tail and Bucktail
Hand stacking
Uneven stacking
Cleaning hair
Selecting hair
References
To hand stack hair such as calf and bucktail that is fine in diameter and wavy, the process is simply a matter of removing a few hairs at a time from the tip end of the clump, realigning them, and then removing some from the root end and realigning them. Start with the very longest hairs in the clump by carefully sliding out a dozen or so hairs by their tips, and then laying them back onto the main bulk of the clump. (It must be an accepted risk that no matter how careful you are, with the scales to your disadvantage, some hairs

will be pulled out of alignment as the few hairs are removed.) Repeat this again, and again, until the only hairs that are not aligned are shorter hairs. Now hold the hair clump firmly by the extreme tips and slide all the shorter hairs out by the root ends. (Since the scales are to your advantage, they remove easily.) Overlay them onto the clump aligning the longest of these shorter hairs with the longest hair in the main body of the clump. Repeat this process until eventually by working first with the longest hairs and then with the remaining progressively shorter hairs you have a reasonably even clump. Once I have begun to stack the shorter hairs from the root end of the clump, I find the process easier if I occasionally trim the longest hairs at their root ends so that the whole clump is more balanced.

Straighter hair is fairly easy to hand stack as well. Using clean hair, remove all the underfur as well as any shorter, smaller diameter hairs. Form a square opening between your fingers by placing the tips of your thumb, index, middle, and ring finger tips together. (For smaller clumps of hair use just thumb, index, and middle fingers.) With your hand held horizontally, lay the hair into the opening between your fingers. Next lift up your hand to an almost vertical position and allow the hair to slide between your fingers onto the flattened palm of your other hand. Bounce the hand maintaining the clump loosely and lightly allowing it to tap up and down on the surface of your flat palm. It is quite surprising what quality of stack can be accomplished with this technique.

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