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  #1  
Old 04-09-2003, 11:23 AM
John Desjardins John Desjardins is offline
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updated albino dragon fly

This is an updated version of a fly I put in here about a year ago.

Hook: TMC 101 #12
thread: 8/0 white
extended body: White Aunt Lydias rug yarn
back: white 1/8" packing foam in ~ 5/16" wide strips.
Hackle: white strung saddle hackle, 3-5 sizes larger than usual.
Oddball tools needed, 1/2" cup hook, Drill


Tying instructions:

Making the extended body. I make 6 to 10 at a time before tying.

1. Cut the yarn off ~ 13" long and tie one end to the upright on your vise. Tie a small loop in the other end of the yarn.

2. Put the cup hook in the chuck of your drill, then put the yarn loop on the cup hook.

3. Holding the yarn taut spin the yarn using the drill. When it forms a tight spiral its time to stop. Keep the yarn taut at all times. It takes ~ 20 seconds or 200 turns with my drill. Your drill will be different, and experimentation is needed.

4. Place a finger on the center of the yarn and fold it so the cuphook is next to the post of your vise.

5. Pull your finger out of the folded over yarn and it will form the spiral. Neaten it up as needed. Before cutting the twisted piece off the post & hook, tie an overhand knot in it to keep the twist.

It sounds complicated, but in the time it took to type this I could make 5 or 6 tails.

Making the fly

Wind a base of thread on the hook. Tie in the tail at the rear of the hook. Cut off the tail near the hook eye then fluff out the material before winding forward to the eye.

Apply superglue to the thread and then tie in the back with the excess facing the rear of the hook.

Tie in the hackle, wind it forward and then tie it off near the eye.

Using a bodkin separate the hackle fibers on the top of the hook then fold the back over. lash it down, cut the foam off 1/8" in front of the eye, then whip finish & super glue the threads.

Remove the fly from the vise and trim the bottom flat.

I like to fish this when there are dragon flys making egg laying flights ove the water. A splashy cast with frequent movement works best.
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  #2  
Old 04-09-2003, 11:48 AM
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FrenchCreek FrenchCreek is offline
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Nice looking fly John.
I tie a similar pattern but I use some old 10 Wt. fly line, the belly part, for the body and magic markers to color it blueish with black striations.
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Old 04-09-2003, 11:53 AM
BigDave BigDave is offline
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Nice, John...great pattern.
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Old 04-09-2003, 11:03 PM
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Quentin Quentin is offline
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Just last year I noticed how often the largemouths would come clear out of the water to grab dragonflies that were hovering above the surface. One day a friend and I watched as the same bass repeatedly jumped out of a pocket in a small clump of lily pads to grab every dragonfly that tried to land on the pads. I wish I'd had a camera to capture the action! We even started looking for the dragonflies in order to locate the fish. We were very successful using floating Rapalas, which have a profile similar to that of a large dragonfly. The bass would often hit the lures just as they landed, and on several occasions we would see the wake of a bass moving to intercept the falling lure.

I wanted to get in on the action with the fly rod, so I tied a dragonfly using small black and green EZ Body Braid stuffed with foam for the tail/body, with a piece of closed cell foam for the back and head, superhair for the wings and webby brown hackle for legs. Looks great but I was disappointed in the results. I think I only caught one fish on it. Here's the fly I tied:
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  #5  
Old 04-10-2003, 07:25 AM
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flyfisha1 flyfisha1 is offline
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John - great fly, and I can see where the tail fabrication could have applications to other patterns; will have to give that a try.
Q - I know what you're saying about bass and d'flies! I grew up on a lake in South Jersey, and during the day in Mid-Summer, the bass would nearly always be hovering aroung the lily pad beds, keeping shaded and waiting for dragonflies to pass overhead. Most of the fish I actually saw jumping were probably less than 12" in length, but some of these fish were rocketing out of the water, clearing an easy 24" at the pinnacle of their frenzied leap. It was this, in fact, that got me fly fishing in the first place... well, that and the "SMACK" sound made by bluegills sucking insects off the water's surface. Many great memories of tossing small poppers on a Shakespeare fly fishing combo.
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Old 04-10-2003, 09:30 AM
BigDave BigDave is offline
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Q - Cool tie and a great looking fly. Love the dark iridescent look that a lot of dragonflies around here have.

Couldn't agree more with you guys about the Bass going nuts over these things. The only time I have seen largemouths really get selective was 2 summers ago at Lake Rohunta here in MA. Conditions were perfect - nice bass leaping all around the boat taking dragonflies mid-air. We tried everything including spin fishing tactics but could not buy a hit. I think had we been armed with some of these flies it could have been a banner day.
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Old 04-10-2003, 09:34 AM
John Desjardins John Desjardins is offline
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Q, Nice looking fly.

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one whose experienced the leaping fish day.
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Old 04-10-2003, 12:01 PM
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FrenchCreek FrenchCreek is offline
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John & Q:
Can you give proportions. e.g. length overall for Dragons Vs. Damsels that you tie.
My damsels are not more than 2 inches long and my dragons, the red cheek variety, are 3 inches long.
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Old 04-10-2003, 12:34 PM
John Desjardins John Desjardins is offline
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Pete I hope this helps out.

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Old 04-10-2003, 07:08 PM
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Pete, mine is almost exactly the same size as the image on the monitor. It's just over 2" long with a 2-1/2" wingspan. I believe it's tied on a size 6 streamer hook, which is probably a little too small for this application. A hook with a bigger gap would make it much easier to hook the fish -- assuming they actually hit the fly. The red-colored dragonflies and the damsel flies in my area are about this size, but many of the dragonflies are much larger. FWIW, the Rapalas that were working for us were the 9cm (3-1/2") model in silver/black.

Q
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Old 04-11-2003, 09:12 AM
John Desjardins John Desjardins is offline
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Q, based on my experiences I have to disagree with you on the hook size. I started out tying these on #4-6 4XL streamer hooks and found that I couldn't hook fish. The takes I got were principally on the tails and with either a large hook or a stiff tail and I didn't hook as many fish as I thought I should. I've been cutting back the hook size & making the tails more supple to try to increase the hookup percentage. The next step I'm contemplating is adding a trailing hook in the tail.

I guess were just taking a different path to get to the same place.
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Old 04-11-2003, 07:26 PM
flytyer flytyer is offline
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John,

Nice fly.

There is a similar style of extended body fly that has been around for years in Montana (I believe it was first tied by a fellow named Bob Neville for use on the Big Hole) and Idaho for fishing damselflies and giant stoneflies. The folks out west tie the extended body with poly yarn (or at least this was how the first ones were tied back in the late 70's and early 80's), Z-lon yarn, or Antron yarn.

You don't need a drill to twist the yarn, all you need do is first tie in the yarn at the hook bend. After this simply twist the yarn with your fingers or with the help of a hackle plier about 15 to 20 turns on large flies. Then, double the yarn and tie it again again at the tie in spot (or a just a tad in front of the original tie in). As soon as you let go of the doubled yarn, you have the extended body. Effective and fast tie that hold up to many fish. And when treated with floatant, it stays up a long time, especially if you Scotch Guard it the night before its first use.
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Old 04-11-2003, 08:55 PM
John Desjardins John Desjardins is offline
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Thanks for the tips Flytyer. I'll try them next time. My use of the drill stems from a combination of starting to make this type of body on a modified Burkes V worm and too many remembrances of the machine design adage of a tight screw is good.

The Scotchgard is something on my list to try. Thanks for the comments elsewhere on that & CDC.
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Old 12-20-2003, 08:25 PM
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a damsel i came up with earlier today
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