REVIEW: Synthetic Quill Body Wrap

Another way to get the segments

synthetic quill body wrap fly pattern
Soft Hackle tied with the Adams colored SQBW
I've always been a big fan of quill body patterns. Anything from stripped peacock to peccary -- I've used a lot of things out there. So I was understandably excited when I saw a new product from Hareline called "Synthetic Quill Body Wrap" (SQBW).

Per my normal sick material collecting tendencies, I ordered a couple of packages of each color. I tied up a few patterns and came to some conclusions about SQBW:

First off, it's very easy to tie with and get consistent segmentation. Not only that, it's much stronger than the natural materials out there, so it's nice to be able to give it a tug while you wrap it.

The "strips" are also equally consistent in color and size along the length so you can use one strip to tie a number of flies.

The strips are made of some type of paper-ish material and they are obviously printed on a printer. Granted these need to be color-fast in water, so that might explain the issue, but my one complaint is the quality of printing involved. You'll notice, especially on the soft hackle above, the color (as is the case with dot-matrix printers of old) is a result of a bunch of tiny dots printed close together to form, what appears to be, a solid color. These dots are fairly obvious when you look at an individual strip and especially on a smaller fly pattern. It's not a huge deal and I doubt the fish will care, but if you're looking for the solid and natural coloration from an animal quill, then the SQBW won't achieve that. Again, not a huge deal, but it's good to know.

Related to this, I also found that I like the body finish a lot more when I coat them with Clear Cure Goo Hyrdo. Of course, I do the same thing with any quill body pattern, so this isn't an issue for me.

All in all, I think the product is headed in the right direction and I'll definitely be using it to tie up some bugs here this winter.

synthetic quill body wrap fly pattern
Mayfly spinner tied with SQBW

Quill Body Baetis Recipe:
Hook: Allen D102BL #16
Thread: UTC Ultrathread 70 Denier, Olive
Tail: Lemon Woodduck
Body: Synthetic Quill Body Wrap (coated with Clear Cure Goo Hydro)
Thorax: Az. Synth Dubbing, Dark Olive
Wing Case: 1mm Rainy's Crosslink Foam
Wing: Spirit River UV2 CDC, Natural