Matarelli Special Salmon fly

Frank Matarelli is probably best know amongst the fly tying community for what are still regard as some of the worlds best fly tying tools, but here I would like to show you a little of his talent as a world class fly tyer.

As the name suggests, the Matarelli special is a truly special fly.

The under body is constructed of a double length of heavy gauge copper wire that is twisted together. The two ends of the wire where tied in along each side of the hook shaft to form a flat body. The mid section of the twisted wires are left as a looped tail support at the rear of the hook. This wire loop tail support could easily be adjusted, by bending it up or down. This would in turn, change the swimming action of the fly, rather like a wobbler.

The under body is made from a highly reflective poly yarn wound over the two lengths of heavy gauge copper wire to enhance the bodies shape and forming the “Background” for the perfectly proportioned and wonderful snake like weave of Larva Lace and copper wire.

The underside of the fly is just amazing! Literally hundreds of strands of copper wire, woven and wound the whole length of the body without a single strand out of position.

The hackle has a foundation of short spun grey marabou which is topped with what looks like a chemically treated Spey hackle and a blue green peacock body hackle, all of which veil the front body. The Materelli special was designed as a steelhead fly and Frank tied it using many different materials for the tail, wear and hackle.

I was lucky enough to meet Frank in 1994, when he very kindly gave me a set of his tools, ( which I still use and regard the whip finisher as the best ever designed) and this wonderful fly. Frank Matarelli passed away 17th August 2018, at the grand old age of 102.

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