The aim of this blog is to connect fly-tyers all over the world, to share, techniques, patterns, information and knowledge.

Posts tagged “salt water

Melt Glue Zonker

 

An excellent technique for tying uniform and transparent bodies on Zonkers.

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Proppen

This simple tie is without doubt my most productive sea trout pattern!

Please remember to subscribe to the feather benders You Tube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYb8DCVlYijoCYgvx_v2EuQ

 


Stingsild bucktail streamer

 

IMG_5843

Although the recent tendency for tying and designing sea trout flies has gone more towards imitation patterns, some of which are extremely realistic, I am constantly drawn back to some more traditional styles of tying, that never stop producing fish. This is one of them!  This extremely simple pattern is so effective on autumn sea trout that for the past few years at least a couple of dozen have to be tied for my box.  During the summer months the Mickey Finn, another classic buck-tail streamer, is an outstanding pattern on bright sunny days, but falls short when fished in the autumn. I wanted a pattern that would fish as well in the dark grey autumn months, this was the result.

Stingsild Buck-tail streamer

Hook          Mustad S71SS salt water streamer # 4-6  http://mustad.no/catalog/na/product.php?id=193

Thread      Dyneema

Body         Holographic tinsel

Throat    White buck-tail https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/hair-fur/select-bucktails

Underwing   Four strands of gold Gliss n Glow https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/flash/gliss-n-glow

Wing      Light brown buck-tail with darker brown buck-tail over https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/hair-fur/select-bucktails

Topping   Five or six strands of peacock herl

Eyes    Edson brass eyes  http://www.whitetailflytieing.com/

Head    Black  http://www.veniard.com/section154/cellire-head-cement-and-thinners

IMG_5812

1

Insert your salt water streamer hook in the vice with the hook shaft horizontal.

IMG_58132

Run your tying thread along the hook shank until you come to a place between the hook point and barb.

IMG_58153

At the tail of the hook tie in a length of holographic flat tinsel. Unlike salmon and exhibition flies this tinsel body should be uneven, I want to achieve the most reflective multi faceted surface as possible. So the foundation of thread doesn’t have to be flat!

IMG_58164

This is also a fishing fly so strengthen the tinsel body by coating the thread foundation with varnish before you start wrapping the tinsel.

IMG_58195

Wrap the tinsel over the whole length of the body and wipe off any excess varnish that may flow on to the tinsel. tie off.

IMG_58206

Turn your fly up side down and tie in a small bunch of prepared white buck-tail. This should extend about one half of the hook length beyond the hook bend.

IMG_58217

Trim off the excess buck-tail and tie down the butts with a few turns of tying thread.

IMG_58238

Tie in four short lengths of gold Gliss n Glow on top of the hook shank.

IMG_58259

Now clean and stack a small bunch of light brown or tan buck-tail and tie in on top of the Gliss n Glow.

IMG_582810

Repeat stage 9 but with a darker brown buck-tail That extends a little longer than the light brown.

IMG_582911

Cut five or six lengths of peacock herl from just under the eye on a peacock tail feather. Tie these in in one bunch for the topping, again a little longer than the buck-tail wing.

IMG_583112

Take two Edson brass eyes, you can substitute these with jungle cock but the effect is not the same.

IMG_583213

Trim down the brass eyes with wire cutters as shown.

IMG_583314

Secure the eyes one each side of the head with a few turns of tying thread. Before you continue to tie in the eyes apply a drop of varnish to hold everything in place.

IMG_583515

Wrap the head with tying thread and whip finish. Coat the head with black varnish.  Now wet your fingers and soak the entire wing and pull it back to give it shape.

IMG_583716

Once the wing is wet and shaped let it dry, it only takes a few minutes.

IMG_584317

Once dry the wing will hold its shape.

IMG_585818

A batch of Stingsild soon ready for the salt!


Bug Bond Thunder Creek.

Bug Bond Thunder Creek, a great salt water sea trout pattern.

The original Thunder creek streamer series came from the vice of American, Keith Fulsher. In the early sixties, not satisfied with the regular head and eye size of streamers, he began experimenting and chose the reverse buck tail technique for his Thunder creek patterns.  This technique involves tying the buck tail, as the technique suggests, the opposite way and then folding it back over the hook shank and tying down to form the head. The simplicity of this pattern and the minimal materials needed to tie it, is fly design at its very best! He achieved his goal, a slim two toned body with a large minnow head that allowed for larger eyes, the main attack point for predatory fish and through changing only the buck tail colour and hook size, could imitate numerous baitfish. Streamers generally fall into two categories, baitfish imitations and attractors! I am in no doubt that the Thunder creek covers both. You can try a whole load of colour combinations, and if you would like a little flash in the pattern tie this in at the rear of the head before folding the wings back. Also if you would like a heavier pattern use lead under the head dubbing.  If you are looking for a slimmer pattern to imitate a sand eel, replace the buck tail with a synthetic material like fish hair or DNA, but dont build up the head with dubbing, this will keep the pattern slim and streamline.

1
Secure your straight eye streamer hook securely fixed in the vice.

Attatch your tying thread and cover the first third of the hook shank.

3
Now cut a small bunch of buck tail and even the ends in a hair stacker. measure the hair bunch to the correct length required and tie in as shown, on top of the hook shank.

4
Turn your hook up side down in the vice.

5
Tie in another bunch of lighter buck tail on the underside of the hook shank. This should be just a little shorter than the first. Make sure that the forward whippings of tying thread are tight into the hook eye.

6
Now apply a little dubbing to the tying thread and build up a tight dense base for the head of the baitfish. Make sure that the head is not larger than the initial butts of buck tail. Finish with the tying thread hanging at the base of the head.

7
This stage can be done free hand, but you can achieve much better results using a transparent plastic tube. Place the tube over the eye of the hook pushing the buck tail back to form the wing.

8
Make a few tight turns of tying thread to form the head. The Bucktail wing will flare outwards.

9
Carefully remove the tube, by twisting it from side to side while carefully pulling off the head. Make a few more secure tight turns of tying thread and whip finish. Apply the tape eyes one each side. To set the wing flat wet your fingers and stroke the wing.

10
The only thing remaining now is to coat the head with Bug Bond. The first coat is just to secure the tape eyes. Make sure that when applying the next two coats that you cover the band of tying thread. When the wing dry’s it will remain flat.


Stingsild bucktail streamer

In the autumn in Northern Europe after the long hot summer when the coastal waters begin to cool down again, its at this time of year you dont want to be without a stickleback imitation!

IMG_5843

Although the recent tendency for tying and designing sea trout flies has gone more towards imitation patterns, some of which are extremely realistic, I am constantly drawn back to some more traditional styles of tying, that never stop producing fish. This is one of them!  This extremely simple pattern is so effective on autumn sea trout that for the past few years at least a couple of dozen have to be tied for my box.  During the summer months the Mickey Finn, another classic buck-tail streamer, is an outstanding pattern on bright sunny days, but falls short when fished in the autumn. I wanted a pattern that would fish as well in the dark grey autumn months, this was the result.

Stingsild Buck-tail streamer

Hook          Mustad S71SS salt water streamer # 4-6  http://mustad.no/catalog/na/product.php?id=193

Thread      Dyneema http://www.funkyflytying.co.uk/shop/products/veevus-gsp-thread-dyneema-/1266/

Body         Holographic tinsel

Throat    White buck-tail https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/hair-fur/select-bucktails

Underwing   Four strands of gold Gliss n Glow https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/flash/gliss-n-glow

Wing      Light brown buck-tail with darker brown buck-tail over https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/hair-fur/select-bucktails

Topping   Five or six strands of peacock herl

Eyes    Edson brass eyes  http://www.whitetailflytieing.com/

Head    Black  http://www.veniard.com/section154/cellire-head-cement-and-thinners

IMG_5812

1

Insert your salt water streamer hook in the vice with the hook shaft horizontal.

IMG_58132

Run your tying thread along the hook shank until you come to a place between the hook point and barb.

IMG_58153

At the tail of the hook tie in a length of holographic flat tinsel. Unlike salmon and exhibition flies this tinsel body should be uneven, I want to achieve the most reflective multi faceted surface as possible. So the foundation of thread doesn’t have to be flat!

IMG_58164

This is also a fishing fly so strengthen the tinsel body by coating the thread foundation with varnish before you start wrapping the tinsel.

IMG_58195

Wrap the tinsel over the whole length of the body and wipe off any excess varnish that may flow on to the tinsel. tie off.

IMG_58206

Turn your fly up side down and tie in a small bunch of prepared white buck-tail. This should extend about one half of the hook length beyond the hook bend.

IMG_58217

Trim off the excess buck-tail and tie down the butts with a few turns of tying thread.

IMG_58238

Tie in four short lengths of gold Gliss n Glow on top of the hook shank.

IMG_58259

Now clean and stack a small bunch of light brown or tan buck-tail and tie in on top of the Gliss n Glow.

IMG_582810

Repeat stage 9 but with a darker brown buck-tail That extends a little longer than the light brown.

IMG_582911

Cut five or six lengths of peacock herl from just under the eye on a peacock tail feather. Tie these in in one bunch for the topping, again a little longer than the buck-tail wing.

IMG_583112

Take two Edson brass eyes, you can substitute these with jungle cock but the effect is not the same.

IMG_583213

Trim down the brass eyes with wire cutters as shown.

IMG_583314

Secure the eyes one each side of the head with a few turns of tying thread. Before you continue to tie in the eyes apply a drop of varnish to hold everything in place.

IMG_583515

Wrap the head with tying thread and whip finish. Coat the head with black varnish.  Now wet your fingers and soak the entire wing and pull it back to give it shape.

IMG_583716

Once the wing is wet and shaped let it dry, it only takes a few minutes.

IMG_584317

Once dry the wing will hold its shape.

IMG_585818

A batch of Stingsild soon ready for the salt!


E-Z Sand Eel

A great pattern for salt water sea trout and Sea Bass.

I am currently working with salt water patterns for Northern Europe so I will be publishing a good selection of modern patterns for sea trout and bass in the coming week.

Hook Mustad S70SNP-DT Big Game Light # 4-6 http://www.mustad.no/productcatalog/na/product.php?id=191

Thread Dyneema

Body E-Z body tube http://www.e-zbody.com/

Tail 15 strands of Flashabou 

Eyes Fleye Foils http://www.theflypeople.com/

Head Bug Bond http://www.veniard.com/section188/

The original pattern this is based on is form the vice of my late, old friend Jack Gartside. This is not only an extremely effective pattern but also requires the minimum materials and once you have mastered the technique is very quick to tie.

Like the most effective coast wobblers that represent Tobis this pattern is a darter, and has next to no movement in the materials, but like a fleeing sand eel it “darts” in a short fast “zig zag” movement.  Another “problem” for many fly fishermen is that the hook on this pattern is mounted at the head of the fly, leaving a good length of body for the sea trout, sea bass to bite at without being hooked.  This can be the case with smaller fish but larger fish tend to take this pattern contant.  Also a interesting little experiment that I have undertaken a few times is, if you are cleaning a fish that you see has been feeding on sand eels just have a look at which way the head of the sand eel is facing in the stomach of the fish, nearly always, has the sand eel been swallowed head first!  The attach point for pradatory fish is the eyes and these new Fleye foils from Bob Popovics make very realistic sand eel and bait fish patterns.

Sand eels shoal in very large numbers, but are seldom seen during the day in the shallows as they lie buried in the sand, away from predators.  They first appear during the evening, when they come out to feed through the night.  But despite there nocturnal habits sand eel patterns can be fished around the clock the whole year.

You can also try other colour combinations, but keep in mind the general rule of the lightest colour on the stomach and the darkest colour on the back.

Secure your salt water hook in the vice. I like to use a Mustad C70SNP Big game light for this patter beacause of its wide gape and short shank.

Take a length of medium E-Z Body tubing about 6-7-cm long. Measure the the tubing along the hook shank, so that you know where to insert the hook eye into the tube.

Make a opening in the tube where you are going to thread it onto the hook shank.

Thread the tube onto your hook as shown.

Slide the tube back and attach your tying thread behind the hook eye.

Thread a long loop of mono through the E-Z body tube towards the tail.

Thread the bunch of Flashabou through the mono loop and pull this through the tube and out at the hook eye.

Tie down the Flashabou just behind the hook eye.

Tie in the end of the tube and make a neat tight head.

Select your chosen Fleye Foil product. I have used small 25 mm. sand eel foils.

Remove the Fleye Foils from there card and stick them in place, one each side of the eel head and tie down using the small attachment on the foils.

Once you have whip finished and removed your tying thread, turn your fly in the vice so you can tie down the tail at the base of the E-Z body tube. Once secure give it a small drop of Bug Bond just to hold it in place. Remove tying thread and reset hook the correct way in the vice.

The sand eel should now look like this. You can trim the Flashabou tail down to your required size and shape.

You can now colour your sand eel if wished with water proof felt markers.

Carefully coat the foils and head of the eel with Bug Bond and cure with the UV light as you go.

If you want a more three dimentional effect make small colour ajustments with felt pens after every coat of Bug Bond. This builds up layers and gives more depth.

If you ‘open’ the tail of Flashabou and place a tiny drop of Bug Bond at the base and cure! the tail will remain flaired and open.

One of the great things about E-Z body tube is that it remains flexible.

Fleye Foils. Orders and info at: http://www.theflypeople.com/

Bug Bond. Orders and info at: http://www.veniard.com/section188/

E-Z Body Orders and info at: http://www.e-zbody.com/


Clouser deep Minnow (Variant)

Clouser Deep Minnow (variant)

IMG_6090

Bob Clouser is a well known fly tyer from Middletown USA. He designed the Clouser minnow with the goal of making a pattern that would represent a fleeing bait fish, with a jig motion. The key to achieving this is locating the eyes in the right position on the hook shank. When you retrieve the fly it rises and when you pause if falls or dives. It never stops moving. I am calling this a Variant because I dont believe it to be 100% the original Clouser deep minnow, but I may be wrong!  Anyway its a great sea trout and bass pattern that should be tied and tried.

Hook: Mustad S71SNP-DT # 6  http://mustad.no/catalog/na/product.php?id=193

Thread Dyneema

Eyes Bidoz sea eyes (original has red with black centre) http://bidoz.com/shop/en/eyes/57-sea-eyes.htm l

Belly White buck tail

Flash Spirit River Crystal Splash

Back Brown buck tail 

IMG_6047

1

Secure your hook in the vice with the hook shank horizontal.

IMG_60482

Run tying thread about 1/3 along the length of the hook shank.

IMG_60503

The eyes I use are bidoz sea eyes, they have a small rebate that fits nicely around the hook shank.

IMG_60514

Tie in the eyes about 1/3 along the hook shank and secure with a figure of eight wrap and a drop of super glue to stop them twisting.

IMG_60525

Cut , clean and stack  a length of white buck tail. The belly and wing should be approximately two to two and a half times the length of the hook.

IMG_60536

Once your buck tail is ready tie it on as follows. Trim the ends straight and place the buck tail diagonally at the side of the hook shank between the hook eye and eyes. Make two loose turns around the buck tail and then tighten.

IMG_60547

Tie down the butts as shown.

IMG_60568

Lift the buck tail and wind the tying thread back behind the eyes.

IMG_60579

Now wrap the tying thread over the buck tail back about level with the hook point and then forward again. Making sure that the buck tail remains on top of the hook shank.

IMG_6058

10

Rotate your vice so the Clouser is up side down. Wind your thread forward taking care not to cross over the buck tail on top of the eyes.

IMG_605911

Take about 8 strands of Crystal Splash or flash and tie in so that the longest side extends just a little further than the buck tail belly.

IMG_606012

Take the remaining crystal splash and fold it back, this should be shorter and extend only a little further than the hook bend.

IMG_606113

Tie down the crystal splash.

IMG_606214

Prepare another bunch of buck tail slightly more than the first and measure it up to the belly.

IMG_606315

Once you have tied in your buck tail back using the same method as the belly, rotate your vice the correct way again just to see that the fly is balanced.

IMG_606416

Spin the vice round again and tie in three strands of peacock herl as the topping and whip finish.

IMG_6065

17

Stick some red and black prisma tape eyes in the small eye holes.

IMG_606618

Place a small drop of Bug Bond on top of the tape eyes and cure with the UV light.

IMG_606719

Coat the eyes once more with Bug Bond and the head, cure with the UV light.

IMG_606920

The finished Clouser deep minnow variant. You should try this pattern in the some other great combination colours, Blue & white, Olive & white and Chartreuse and white.


Stingsild bucktail streamer

In Northern Europe the sea trout are now returning to the cooling coastal waters after a long hot summer, and at this time of year you dont want to be without a stickleback imitation!

IMG_5843

Although the recent tendency for tying and designing sea trout flies has gone more towards imitation patterns, some of which are extremely realistic, I am constantly drawn back to some more traditional styles of tying, that never stop producing fish. This is one of them!  This extremely simple pattern is so effective on autumn sea trout that for the past few years at least a couple of dozen have to be tied for my box.  During the summer months the Mickey Finn, another classic buck-tail streamer, is an outstanding pattern on bright sunny days, but falls short when fished in the autumn. I wanted a pattern that would fish as well in the dark grey autumn months, this was the result.

Stingsild Buck-tail streamer

Hook          Mustad S71SS salt water streamer # 4-6  http://mustad.no/catalog/na/product.php?id=193

Thread      Dyneema

Body         Holographic tinsel

Throat    White buck-tail https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/hair-fur/select-bucktails

Underwing   Four strands of gold Gliss n Glow https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/flash/gliss-n-glow

Wing      Light brown buck-tail with darker brown buck-tail over https://www.spiritriver.com/materials/hair-fur/select-bucktails

Topping   Five or six strands of peacock herl

Eyes    Edson brass eyes  http://www.whitetailflytieing.com/

Head    Black  http://www.veniard.com/section154/cellire-head-cement-and-thinners

IMG_5812

1

Insert your salt water streamer hook in the vice with the hook shaft horizontal.

IMG_58132

Run your tying thread along the hook shank until you come to a place between the hook point and barb.

IMG_58153

At the tail of the hook tie in a length of holographic flat tinsel. Unlike salmon and exhibition flies this tinsel body should be uneven, I want to achieve the most reflective multi faceted surface as possible. So the foundation of thread doesn’t have to be flat!

IMG_58164

This is also a fishing fly so strengthen the tinsel body by coating the thread foundation with varnish before you start wrapping the tinsel.

IMG_58195

Wrap the tinsel over the whole length of the body and wipe off any excess varnish that may flow on to the tinsel. tie off.

IMG_58206

Turn your fly up side down and tie in a small bunch of prepared white buck-tail. This should extend about one half of the hook length beyond the hook bend.

IMG_58217

Trim off the excess buck-tail and tie down the butts with a few turns of tying thread.

IMG_58238

Tie in four short lengths of gold Gliss n Glow on top of the hook shank.

IMG_58259

Now clean and stack a small bunch of light brown or tan buck-tail and tie in on top of the Gliss n Glow.

IMG_582810

Repeat stage 9 but with a darker brown buck-tail That extends a little longer than the light brown.

IMG_582911

Cut five or six lengths of peacock herl from just under the eye on a peacock tail feather. Tie these in in one bunch for the topping, again a little longer than the buck-tail wing.

IMG_583112

Take two Edson brass eyes, you can substitute these with jungle cock but the effect is not the same.

IMG_583213

Trim down the brass eyes with wire cutters as shown.

IMG_583314

Secure the eyes one each side of the head with a few turns of tying thread. Before you continue to tie in the eyes apply a drop of varnish to hold everything in place.

IMG_583515

Wrap the head with tying thread and whip finish. Coat the head with black varnish.  Now wet your fingers and soak the entire wing and pull it back to give it shape.

IMG_583716

Once the wing is wet and shaped let it dry, it only takes a few minutes.

IMG_584317

Once dry the wing will hold its shape.

IMG_585818

A batch of Stingsild soon ready for the salt!


Essential sea trout patterns for the autumn

Hip, Hip and Hurrah ! The autumn sea trout season is just around the corner, and as I can see from the search engine terms on the blog, I am not the only one itching to get back into the salt. No less than 70% of all searches at the moment, are regarding sea trout flies and sea trout fishing in the salt !

0037

So I bow to popular demand and will be publishing a few posts over the next few weeks covering essential patterns for salt water sea trout fishing. Visitors that find themselves on other parts of the globe dont dismay!  Although many of these patterns where designed specifically for fishing in Norther Europe, I am in no doubt that not only the techniques will be of interest, but there is no reason that they will also work on other species in both fresh and salt water. 

IMG_90811 Proppen

I’ll start with my most successful pattern. I dont know how many of these I have tied in the past couple of years, but it is in the thousands! Just about everyone who has ordered the fly from me come back for more.  You can see the full step by step and fishing techniques:  https://thefeatherbender.com/2013/04/09/proppen-without-doubt-my-most-productive-sea-trout-fly-2/

IMG_09422 The Awesome Opossum

A larger shrimp pattern for attracting larger fish. The AO has also worked extremely well for me the last few seasons when larger patterns and more movement are required to trigger fish into taking. Although a more technical pattern to tie it’s well worth learning the technique: https://thefeatherbender.com/2013/01/23/just-foiling-around/

00023 The Virtual Minnow

I have been using this pattern since the mid nineties and is a great go-to pattern when nothing is happening in the surface and blind fishing is the order of the day. One of the great things with this pattern is its flexibility of size and colour, the combinations of wing and body colour and size are endless. https://thefeatherbender.com/2013/02/28/the-virtual-minnow-a-zonker-with-a-twist/

IMG_0662

4 Foil Gammarus

This gammarus pattern probably represents the most common food stuff of the sea trout, no matter the time of year you will always find these small shrimps on the sea trout menu. This is one of my more recent patterns, so I haven’t really had much time fishing it, but the results so far are promising! For the full step by steps on a couple of variations: https://thefeatherbender.com/2013/01/24/the-revers-foil-gammarus/  https://thefeatherbender.com/2013/02/19/the-foil-speaks-the-wise-man-listens/

If you have any questions regarding sea trout patterns, techniques or materials please dont hesitate to send me a message.

I will be posting four more patterns for sea trout over the weekend, so sign up to receive each post as they are published.


Proppen-Without doubt my most productive sea trout fly….

Proppen, over a thousand sea trout can’t be wrong!!

This is my variant of one of the best salmon flies in recent years. It is, without doubt my most productive fly for salt water sea trout fishing.  There is something about this pattern that sea trout just can’t resist.

On many occasions when there are sea trout feeding or on the move, and they just follow the fly and won’t take, this small fly works most of the time.  Fished on a long fine leader and floating line just under the surface with a very slow figure of eight retrieve, the takes are savage and powerful, driving the tiny hook home immediately. Many fishermen are skeptical to fishing such small patterns, but if you give this one a try, I promise, you won’t be disappointed.

When nothing else will work, proppen saves the day…

Proppen

Hook: Mustad 60329NBLN # 10 Carp Power

Thread: Dyneema

Feelers: 4  Stripped cock hackles

Beard: Deer hair summer coat

Body: Moose hair coated with Bug Bond and coloured with waterproof felt pen

1
Secure your hook in the vice as shown.

2
Select four stiff light coloured cock hackles

3
Strip off all the fibers.

4
Attach your tying thread to the hook shank

5
Tie in the four stripped cock hackles evenly spaced around the hook shank.

6
Cut a small bunch of deer hair from a summer coat, this wont flare as much as the winter coat hair. And even the points in a hair stacker.

7
Tie in the deer hair as a beard over and around the cock hackles.

8
Trim off the surplus deer hair and tie down.

9
Tie in two long moose mane hairs, one black, one white.

10
Wrap the moose hairs around the body simultaneously and tie off behind the hook eye.

11
Whip finish and remove the tying thread.

12
Give the body a coat with Bug Bond.

13
Give the body a quick zap with the UV light to cure the Bug Bond.

14
Colour the body with a waterproof felt pen and give it another coat with Bug Bond.

15
The finished fly ready for the salt.

Four feelers in all directions.