Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Alternitives for Chadwick 477

First, thanks are in order to Richard, a.k.a. Regular Rod at Dry Fly 'Expert'.  If it was not for his generosity and kindness, I would not have a sample of Chadwick's 477 to use as a reference.

Many readers of the blog know I've been searching for a Chadwick's 477 mending yarn substitute.  While Veniard sells a good substitute for the yarn used in Frank Sawyer's Killer Bug, I would never know if it was close.  I've never seen the genuine article until Richard sent me the sample.

It's been a small obsession to find a substitute for Chadwick's 477 starting with me getting Frank Sawyer's Nymphs and the Trout published in 1958 by Stanley Paul & Co. and Oliver Edwards video Essential Patterns.  I've used Rag wool from an old sweater (Rag Bug) before locating a source of Veniard's Chadwick's 477 substitute (Killer Bug Yarn). Next I found a bag of "Fun with Fibers" yarn while cleaning out an old crafts locker (Possible Chadwick 477 Substitute).  Then Patons Classic Wool Yarn (00229) Natural Mix, which I use for my K.I.S.S. Crane Fly Larva.

It was that post and my request for a sample that now brings me to the end of the quest.  Here are the comparisons.

Richard's letter and sample.
The finalist.
A close-up of the field.
Veniard vs. Original 477
Patons vs. Original 477
Fun with Fibers vs. Original 477

Now I think the winner is clear  - "Fun with Fibers," but no luck finding any.  I could not find any information on the yarn and there was no company information on the packaging.  So the closest which you can buy is the Patons Classic Wool Yarn (00229) Natural Mix.  The problem with the Patons is dye lots can vary and it's 100% wool, not the 85% wool 15% nylon blend found in the Chadwick's 477.  Now the Venards is the furthest from the Chadwick's, but is that due to dye lot or year the yarn was manufactured?  I don't know.  One thing I do know is that Trout don't care if it's the genuine article. They only care if it looks and acts like food.  It's up to the fisher to feel or see the take, strike and land the fish.

So thanks to Richard I have a sample that I can compare to any other yarn when my supply runs out.

Richard again thanks and cheers, expect something in the post.


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  3. I would say nymphing is 90% presentation, drift and getting the flies to fish. The last 10% is what ever you like, flies, gear, or luck.

  4. I think I understand your quest completely, and went through a very similar one myself - including testing some of the same yarns. I ended up choosing a different yarn - one that I liked better when wet - but eventually came the same conclusion: presentation is more important.

  5. After reading your post l got on ebay searching for the paton substitute,and came across patons classic wool roving yarn that also looks like a good sub for the chadwicks 477.

  6. HI,

    I waited to receive some SIRDAR Country Style wool blend yarn from the UK before I wrote to you. I thought you would find it interesting that the shade is numbered #0477 by the manufacturer. And it looks to me like the pinkish beige of Chadwicks. I wonder if the manuf. used some old color chart from another manuf, maybe Chadwicks. Anyway, here's a few links. The stuff is very nice, it doesn't have the multiple different colored fibers like your photos; it's a solid beige, but the 0477 item numbers I thought you'd like to hear about. And it was cheap, about $8 including shipping from the UK. Personally I found it on ebay.



  7. It wets out in that nice fleshy color too. Good luck with it.

  8. I have a card of original Chadwick's 477 yarn for sale.
    Contact me at jimgill@fsmail.net.

  9. A friend of mine uses pieces of brown burlap from a brown burlap bag and black thread. He calls his a Crane Fly Larvae.