SBS Casual Dress SBS


Active Member
Poking around my flyboxes I came across some stuff from the mid 90's, including a bunch of Casual Dress nymphs. Brought back memories of fishing Rock Creek for the first time - catching some nice 'bows/browns, losing a boatload of nymphs, and taking a fall up above Norton CG that eventually required reconstructive knee surgery. Always thought they were cool flies although I haven't tied any in a long time; grabbed some muskrat and ostrich herl, my copy of Tying & Fishing the Fuzzy Nymphs (bless you Polly Rosborough for such a great pattern) and took a trip in the Wayback Machine.

hook - Mustad 9671 #8
thread - Danville 6/0 black
tail - Muskrat
body - Muskrat
collar - Muskrat
head - Ostrich herl

Mash the barb and tie in thread

cut a clump of muskrat (I prefer keeping it on the skin until I need it) with guard hairs (comb out a bit of the underfur)

cut out some more fur and mix it up (this went into the coffee grinder)

take the fur between your palms and roll it into a tapered noodle

create a dubbing loop at the tail tie-in

tie in the fur noodle by the tip

trap it in the loop and spin it until it's nice and tight

wrap the body up to the 75% mark (looks like I could have wound it a little tighter to get better defined segmentation)

tie down and trim excess

grab one more clump for the collar (gives me a chance to use one of those Pettijean clips I got years ago); you want the guard hairs

spin bobbin to take out the twist in your thread (why I used the Danville and not Uni) and split

you can use a loop like I did for the body, but for this application, I much prefer the split-thread method

spin the bobbin to trap the fur

moisten fingers, stroke fur back towards the rear and wrap

completed collar

tie in some ostrich herl (got this off a grocery store feather duster; love the color)

twist herl together, wrap forward, tie off, apply Sally

Polly roughed his up with a hacksaw blade; I don't have that kind of confidence in my tying so I use a velcro brush

The body could probably stand to be beefed up a bit, proportions are off, but it was fun just goofing around with an old friend again.


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