Ralph Cutter, the originator of the fly, showed a really cool variation on the E/C Caddis.
For backcountry stillwater fishing tie the E/C Caddis with all black sparkle dubbing, black wing but under the wing tie in two short pieces of pearlescent tinsel. He ties it in sizes 18-22 and calls it the E/C Midge. I've tied it in 18s and 20s but haven't dared to tread into the land of 22's......yet!
Has anyone here read Cutter's book? Most of the info I can find on the net indicates a parachute hackle. In other words the hackle is wrapped under both the wing and butts of the elk hair. But the text of his book, and the picture ofthe e/c caddis, lead me to beleive he wraps the hackle around just the butts of the elk hair, which gives the "parachute" an angled down apearance. Any advice?
Just an afterthought here, about tying parachute caddis in the general case.
You did a good job. Your deer hair wing lays down pretty flat. That's good.
Most tiers mount the unwound hackle feather, and then lash down the
deer hair wing, pinching it down way too tight to the shank.
Then, in a later step, when you wind the hackle underneath the wing,
using the wing attachment point as a winding fulcrum, that pushes the wing
up until it stands almost straight up.
I hold the wing 1/4" above the shank with one hand, and then go 360 degrees
around the wing clump with the thread, without going under the shank.
Then I pull the thread down gently, so the wing is pulled LOOSELY down
onto the shank. Then I make 3-4 more loose wraps around wing and shank.
Then I make maybe 5 or 6 tight horizontal wraps, underneath the wing, which builds
up a tiny thread post, between wing and shank. Then, when I wind the hackle,
everything is tightly secured. But the wing stays flat and parallel to the shank,
like the real caddis fly. For smaller flies I like to use duck flank instead
of deer or elk hair. The duck flank versions have more of the pencil-thin profile,
shown by the photo of the real bug (above). I "invented" this fly back in the early 1980s. Completely
unaware of Ralph Cutter's even earlier version. I never did tie it with a body.
Just hackle and wings.
All parachute Caddis are champion floaters. But they can be very hard to see (because, like the real bug,
they sit so close to the surface film). So I often tie some white duck flank or white Zelon fibers on the top of the wing clump,
so it's not so hard actually see the fly.