My post of 12/10/2019 thoroughly documents my relationship with the iron sally, and my post of 12/14/2018 provides a materials table and a link to the story of how I became enamored with this sparkling fly. If you are looking for step by step tying instructions, I recommend the YouTube video produced by Juan Ramirez.
I do not have much to add to the narrative on the iron sally; however, during my tying efforts in November I substituted a material for the folded wing case, and I am very satisfied with the results. The standard pattern calls for a folded segment of a turkey tail feather, and the natural feather material does an excellent job of representing the wing case. However, I find that it tends to split, even though I coat the feather with an acrylic spray. I utilize a narrow strip of Tyvek material in my hares ear nymph pattern, and I was curious about how this would look as the folded wing case on an iron sally.
I sliced a narrow strip from an old race bib that was colored black with a permanent marker, and I tied a size 14 iron sally. I was so pleased with the result, that I adopted the Tyvek as my standard iron sally wing case material. It is much easier to work with and accommodates the folding step very readily.
I tied ten new iron sallies split between four size 14’s and six size 146’s. This increased my inventory of these productive flies to twenty-five of each size, as I approach the 2021 season. The iron sally continues to increase in importance as one of my most trusted flies. 2021 will probably be no different.