Great stuff! I'll be out there soon enough to chase silvers in the saltchuck this fall.
Having done both fisheries for years, I would suggest tying a Page Roger's "Slim Jim" for this purpose. I'm sure you can find Page's pattern on the web somewhere...
but here's a general description:
- TMX 911s hook (a bit heavy but stainless and durable, long shank to put the hook back far enough for coho)
- high density closed cell foam (ez-body foam I think?), don't buy the kind you can squeeze in the fingers, buy the hard stuff. (Brian - Bill might have some handy?)
- tie in white craft fur on the bend to form the underside of the rear third of the body.
- lay some flashabou over the white craft fur and tie in
- lay some olive craft fur over the flashabou
It should look like the rear third of a sand eel at this point. Wrap a good amount of thread up and down the shaft to use to hold the foam.
Take a bodkin and poke a starter hole thru the foam body. Make sure there is a good thread base on the shaft, and apply zap a gap onto the threaded shaft. Poke the eye of the hook thru the foam quickly before things dry up.
! The foam will flare over the tail you tied in earlier to create a very nice effect
- small yellow or pearl backed sticker eyes up front near the eye on each side
- cut a small strip of the shiny sticker between the eyes and apply to each side of the foam
- color the back of the foam with olive pantone marker
- apply a thin coat of epoxy over the foam portion of the fly using a starbucks wooden stir stick
- rotate in the vise to dry evenly for a couple minutes or use a drying motor if you have one
Here's a great step-by-step...
I caught my first atlantic bonito on this fly in just the same manner as you guys described for coho.
I love flyfishing in the salt for coho - I've hooked, fought and landed hooknoses over 16 pounds while sight casting to surface feeding fish near Moussolini rock at Sekiu in my glory days oh maybe 10 years ago on sand lance patterns like these.