UNI-Stretch "Nylon-Stretch" Tying Thread
Although probably not an all-purpose thread by any means, UNI-Stretch is a fly tying thread that has many uncommon qualities. Pulled tight, it is as small as regular 6/0 tying thread and ties very flat.
Relaxed, it puffs up and is quite translucent. I use it mainly for butts on dry caddis patterns and for the breathing filaments on my midge pupa patterns because it is less bulky and much softer than Antron yarn or Zelon is.
UNI-Stretch can also be used to tie complete soft hackled flies. It eliminates the need for floss or a separate body material in the tying of those patterns. It also makes beautiful marabou streamers or leach type patterns. I believe it will also be a great thread to use for tying with closed cell foam because it will grab and hold the foam a lot better without cutting into it the way standard threads have a tendency to do. It's also great where you want a dull or non-shinny type finish on a fly's head or body.
Available colors include: Black, Fl-Chartreuse, Chinese-Red, Fuchsia, Green, FL-Hot-Pink, Fl-Soft-Hackle Orange, White, Yellow, Olive, and Brown, at $1.00 for a 30 Yd spool from Feather-Craft Fly Fishing, http://www.feather-craft.com , if your local fly shop doesn't carry the UNI-Stretch Nylon Tying Thread products...Rusty.
Re: UNI-Stretch "Nylon-Stretch" Tying Thread
UNI-Stretch thread Update: I tied up 6 Two-Toned X-rated Ants yesterday and the UNI-Stretch thread (in black) did much better in working with foam than any other thread I have ever used before. My hands are rough and weathered, so a minor annoyance was the problem of the mini-multi fibers catching on my rough skin. But that also happens to me with regular thread. However that may be, the over all finished product turned out to be much better (in my view) with the UNI-Stretch thread than any other thread product I have used before.
I originally bought the UNI-Stretch for making butts on my down wing patterns. After I found our how well it worked in that application, I bought the white to make midge pupa breathing filaments and tail fringe on my midge pupa patterns. The black I bought to tie Zebra Midge Pupa patterns with but that pattern didn't prove to be as effective as my regular Striped Midge Pupa was, so I didn't have any other use for the black UNI-Stretch Thread. A few days ago the light came on and I decided to try it on my ant patterns and it works so well in that application that I will use nothing else but the UNI-Stretch thread from here on out.
For making butts and breathing filaments, the UNI-Stretch is tied in in a not too small loop, formed above or behind the hook according to the application. The butt is meant to resemble an egg cluster a caddis or a stonefly is ready to lay. The Loop will do fine as a butt all by its self but the trout's teeth tend to catch in the loop and fray the material all too quickly, so I pull the loop out even with the end of the hook bend and cut it straight across with my scissors and let it retract. That eliminates the fraying problem for good because there is nothing for the teeth to catch in. I make the wing on the down wing patterns one butt length longer than the butt is long, cutting the wing so that it is longer at the bottom than at the top at about a 45 degree angle, which helps to illuminate the butt when the fly is on the water. The bright butt material (besides locating the focal point of the fly at the business end of the hook) also helps to pull the fish to take the pattern before drag can set in, which is especially helpful in fishing the pocket water on most free stone streams.
On midge pupa, the loop is tied in at the head of the fly and a little over sized at that. The tag end of the UNI-Stretch thread is bound down and around the hook bend to the end of the midge pupa's abdomen, and left long sticking out the back. After the fly is completely tied, the UNI-Stretch is trimmed to the proper tail fringe and breathing gill lengths with your tying scissors. One big advantage to using the UNI-Stretch over other available materials is the stretch and how compact and soft this material is, which allows you to make really nicely tapered bodies. And how much movement this material shows in the water compared to other materials, and the fact that you can pull it out to where you can easily trim it with out endangering the rest of your fly pattern, and it pulls right back to its proper position all by its self when you are done with your trimming opperation. This is some very neat stuff to work with...Rusty.