TIM’S SHRIMP FLY – CREAM/ORANGE
by Doug Uyematsu
Hook: #6 or #4 Tiemco 811S or Daiichi 2546
Thread: Orange Danville’s Flat Waxed Nylon
Eye: 3/16″ black machined brass (bead chain for lighter flies)
Claw (tail): Calf tail, cream over pink over burnt orange
Thread Shield: Orange craft bead lace (Rexlace) or large vinyl rib
Attractor Antennae: Pearl Sili Legs or other substitute
Legs: Pearl Sili Legs or other substitute
Under Body: Orange Flat Waxed Nylon tapered to hook eye
Body: Alternating cream and orange rug yarn
This fly is a modification of the DUI Fly. It was developed to provide the impression of a stout body without adding excessive amounts of material to the hook. It sinks rather slowly but really dances around on the bottom.
Jam the thread onto the shank just behind the hook eye. Wind a thread base back to a point just beyond the bend. Wind the thread back to a point opposite the hook point. Tie the machined brass eyes on top of and behind the hook point leaving plenty of room to form the body and allowing the fly to ride hook point up. This positioning of the weighted eyes prevents the finished fly from diving head first into the sand.
The claw (tail) is tied in very slightly around the bend of the hook. The claw will stick up out of the bottom while the fly is a rest. It is important to keep the claw material quite sparse. Tie in a sparse bunch of cream or pale tan colored calf tail material, about ¼ to ½ inch longer than the hook. On top of this layer, tie in a sparse bunch of pink calf tail material. The last bunch of material to be tied in is the burnt orange.
The attractor antennae are tied on each side of the claw (Ghost shrimp don’t have these but they provide movement) extending just shorter than the claw. I use a 4 to 5-inch strip of Sili Legs (actually a strand from a bass spinnerbait skirt), loop it to form the antennae and later cut the loop to form two legs ½-inch long. I use only two legs because I am sure fish cannot count. Trim the antennae about ¼ inch shorter than the claw.
The thread shield is placed on the fly to protect the thread wraps that hold the brass eyes to the hook from the ravages of the sand bottom. The weight is the part of the fly that takes the greatest beating during a retrieve. This step is not needed if bead chain eyes are used. Taper the lace to provide a neat tie-in. The taper also provides openings for the legs to protrude. This material can be purchased from a craft store. Lay the tapered lace on top of the base of the claw and tie it down. Wind the thread to the front of the brass eyes, hold down the lace material and tie it down, tightly, in front of the eyes. Cut the lace in a long taper that extends to the hook eye. This taper will start the tapered shape of the fly under body. Wind the thread forward to the hook eye. Wind it back to the brass eyes, filling in any thread voids. This underbody must be tapered very smoothly with thread in order to allow for easy attachment of the yarn body.
Bind down a short piece of cream colored rug yarn in front of the brass eyes. Wind three wraps of thread from left to right then use your thumb nail to push the thread and three wraps against the brass eyes. Pull the thread between the brass eyes and yarn and make three wraps in the opposite direction forming “x” wraps with the thread. As you go over the yarn pull the thread down and back toward the hook point on each wrap. Alternate orange and cream yarn segments until you get two of each. HINT: Keep the yarn at least a half inch long on the near side so that they can be gripped so thread can be easily forced between yarn segments.
Whip a tapered head then take the fly out of the vise. The artistic part now starts. Tug on the yarn on each side of the hook until they lay flat and even. Use scissors with that are well curved to shape the yarn body. Dr. Slick curved scissors work well. Lay the scissor blades against the hook eye on one side and make a curved cut to the outside of the brass eye on one side and repeat on the other side. Several strokes may be needed to get a smooth compact body. Do NOT make the body bulge out side of the brass eyes unless you are willing to put up with the fly floating around in the air on windy days.
Use a little head cement on the whipped head. Don’t add cement, epoxy or other material to the “x” wraps. Capillary actions will cause the fluid to soak into the yarn.