I have been tying along a particular theme recently, that being nymphs with a V-Rib body and a tungsten bead. On this one I was focusing on getting a glowing translucence in the body:
Place a 2.5mm black tungsten bead on a #14 or #16 nymph hook.
Tie in a rough base (for grip) of bright yellow silk (70 denier used here)
Tie in a tail of natural blonde squirrel tail, and use the tag end to build up the thorax a little , so securing the bead.
Tie in a small bunch of cock pheasant tail fibres as shown above.
Now splay and spread the fibres either side of the hook shank in two bunches of equal size.
Bring the pheasant tail fibres back to the back of the bead as indicated above.
Now tie in a strand of honey coloured V-Rib, with the end in tight against the base of the bead, and wrap your silk back to the back of the thorax position.
Now dub in a fairly tightly wound sausage of a wiry gray dubbing mix containing some rabbit and ice dub or SLF.
Bring the pheasant tail thorax back over the dubbing, secure with a few wraps of thread, and add in a strand of holographic tinsel at this point.
Use your silk to raise the V-Rib to a vertical position, and tie the tinsel back to the back of the thorax.
Now wrap the v-rib in tight wraps back towards the tail. Before making the last two wraps, place a dot of super glue on the silk underbody and then wrap the v-rib over that , bringing it to the position where the tail was tied in. The super glue just helps secure this tough material, since we don’t want to create any bulk at this point in the fly, and will tie it down with only two wraps of thread.
Now pull the holographic tinsel back down the back of the body and secure with a single wrap of thread. Then dab a very small amount of superglue onto the thread, and perform three wraps, and snip the thread and tinsel away.
Use a dark brown marker to colour the yellow thread wraps near the tail. Now apply a thin layer of UV glue along just the back of the body, and up over the thorax cover, and dry with the UV torch. Don’t coat the underside of the body, as we want to keep the ribbed appearance there.
Stroke the pheasant tail fibres back by hand, and thin them out with a very fine pointed pair of scissors.
This is the finished fly.
I recently wrote about a new technique for created in a nymph body with breathing gills along the sides.
In more recent weeks, I have been working up a few more variants and exploring the concept further.Fly tiers will know that such experimentation is a frustrating thing in many respects. You end up with several disasters before you get anything worthwhile. Materials are not as fine as you thought they would be, or not quite subtle enough, or too slippery to bond against, and so it goes; and you end up with little film canisters of tangled cast offs, of zero value to the fisherman in you.
We have a long awaited fishing trip coming up shortly, and instead of stocking up my boxes, I am “wasting” hooks and tying materials experimenting.
But when you get it right, it is all worth it.
I don’t know that I have the gilled body nymph right yet, but I have succeeded in incorporating more translucence, and sparkle into the pattern.