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How to Tie a Craft Fur Clouser

Producer: Tim Flagler  |  Tightline Productions

Tier and videographer Tim Flagler:  “Nothing really new here folks, just a Clouser Minnow tied with craft fur, rather than the traditional buck tail, along with a slightly different tie-in method to produce a bulkier head on the fly.

I begin with a 2/0 Dai-Riki #930 saltwater hook. After getting the hook firmly secured in the jaws of my tying vise, I load a bobbin with a spool of red UTC 140 Denier.”

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  • Jim Holmes

    In my scouting days, your eye tying technique was taught as “lashing” like in building things with cedar posts.

    • Tightline

      That’s pretty much where I got it from.

  • McGuffin

    “Anyway…”

    (Troubles me that I will laugh to myself all day about that)

    • Tightline

      Don’t try to fight it McGuff.

  • Gerald

    Nice looking fly. How does the fur hold up with toothy critters?-Such as spanish or ladyfish?
    I don’t know what Bob would say about this, as his Clousers are all very material skimpy.–
    I like it. Thumbs up.

    • Tightline

      I think the craft fur lasts way longer than bucktail (based on testing this pattern on mid-sized blue fish). I don’t know what Bob would say either but I actually prefer the look and movement of craft fur to bucktail (I really can’t believe I just said that). When it gets wet it looks much more sparse than when it’s dry. Fouling is the only issue that kinda ticks me off but I’m learning to deal with it.

  • Icis Bokonon

    I like this fly, but no way it rotates. I favor saltwater hooks on many of my smallmouth flies, especially hair bugs and dahlbergs, but that DR or Tiemco 100 is heavy wire and a bulky bend and edge. Steel’s carbon content vs. bronze makes it denser. Running the fur over the barbell eyes further shifts the center of gravity; I’ve found that the only way to get salt hooks to perform properly in the clouser is to use a heavier species and size of eyes, raise the eyes on a thread-bed, and keep the fly skimpy and keep the materials as low as possible on the profile.
    That said, the fly would fish well. I love craft fur clousers for speckled trout in the NC sounds. That green/white combo has caught me hundreds of fish, and I have a few souvenir examples that were turned into little wads of hopelessly matted fur, de-eyed and shredded by trout-fangs in dozens of bites.
    Polar-fur and the like, with the embedded flash, works beautifully too. Try wrapping the body in larva lace for saltwater applications–sand-eels or glass minnows have that transparent abdomen look, and the slick body makes the fly dart better and shake out the water when you lift it.
    It may not matter if it doesn’t rotate, except that may lead Mr. Clouser or his heirs and assigns to revoke the Clouser designation and relegate the fly to Deceiver status. Smallies don’t seem to care that the lighter color is up, and craft fur is simply death on them–not sure why but fur cores for dahlberg tails definitely work better than bucktail, especially when blended with hackle, and I use exclusively fur on any nymph or crayfish pattern. It’s super durable, ties in tightly, and is cheap. If you use it a lot, carry a fine-toothed comb.