FLY OF THE MONTH- July 2018
The Fur and Feather Streamer
(Details supplied by Ed Herbst in South Africa)
Scientists say that contrast and movement are the primary factors which influence the ability of trout to locate prey. The Fur and Feather Streamer utilises palmered rabbit fur plus marabou and chickabou feathers in three separate dubbing loops to create maximum movement.
The tried and trusted Clouser Minnow construction of dumbbell eyes tied on top of a long shank, straight eye hook to turn the fly into a hook point up position forms the basis of the fly. Tom Schuemaker of Wapsi flies had the necessary knowledge of centrifugal lead casting to produce the first dumbbell eyes in 1985. He sent samples to Bob Clouser, and Lefty Kreh named the resulting pattern the Clouser Minnow.
The rest is history.
Dumbell eyes are now available in plastic, glass, lead and tungsten, and plastic bead chain eyes are available in two sizes from shops that sell roller and Venetian blinds. I cover them with Loon Fluorescing UV light-cured resin which gives them a lovely blue glow.
I use flat lead on the shank to assist the hook in turning over into a barb-up position.
The Gartside Soft Hackle Streamer with its palmered marabou construction was the basis of the fly, but the inspiration came from a technique which I saw demonstrated on Barry Ord Clarke’s website which was headlined Making a fur hackle and dubbing tutorial. https://thefeatherbender.com/2014/06/05/making-a-fur-hackle-and-dubbing-tutorial-3/
Clarke has two videos on his Feather Bender website, the Bunny Bugger and the Opossum Worm, which demonstrate how to make fur streamers using the dubbing loop technique.
I realised that the immensely strong but fine 12/0 Semperfli Nanosilk thread or its Veevus GSP 100 denier equivalent would be ideal for the waxed dubbing loop into which the zonker strip fur and marabou were placed, but lacked a heavy dubbing spinner. Jay Smit of JVice fame was happy to make me one and I was on my way. http://www.jvice.com/
Bull Dog clamps could be used to insert the fur and feathers into the dubbing loops but purpose-built plastic clips from Marc Petitjean and Stonfo are easier to work with and for the marabou I use the Vosseler tool https://www.troutline.ro/vosseler-xpert-clip-tool
The olive version could imitate a frog, the brown version a dragonfly nymph the black version a tadpole and the white version a minnow.
Three separate dubbing loops are used to construct the fly. The first dubbing loop uses zonker strip fur which covers the back two thirds of the hook. The second dubbing loop uses marabou which then veils the fur.
The third dubbing loop – much shorter – uses smaller grizzly marabou (chickabou) feathers dyed olive or brown to represent legs.
The dressing for the illustrated version is:
Hook: Ahrex NS150 Curved Shrimp hook in #4 or the Hanak H950BL in #6 - both straight eye hooks
Thread: 12/0 Semperfli Nanosilk or Veevus GSP 100 denier
Body: Crosscut two-tone rabbit strip in black/olive covers the rear two thirds of the hook. It is veiled by barred olive marabou (Veniard or Wapsi). The legs are olive chickabou (Wapsi or Veniard)
Eyes: Green BallZeyes with white eyes and black pupils. I fold the fur and marabou backwards as I wind them on and then pick these materials out with a bodkin to ensure that the fibres don’t mat together in the water.
The materials and tools used by the author to tie his Fur and Feather Streamer
Jay Smit’s heavy dubbing spinner
Stage one of the tying process:
Stage two of the tying process: