BLACKNOSE DACE CLOUSER MINNOW by Will Taylor - Black Nose Dace Pattern Feature

By Doug Saball with added notes by Will Taylor

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Submitted By Will Taylor

THREAD pale yellow Flymaster 6/0(this thread is translucent, and becomes nearly transparent when saturated with a penetrating head cement, allowing the underlying wing material colors to come through when finished)
HOOK Tiemco TMC 5263 (3XL nymph/streamer hook, model perfect bend, down-eye); size 10 thru 6 (example tied on a sz.6).
BODY none
EYES Painted non-toxic eyes (steel dumbell; Raymond C. Rumpf & Son, P.O. Box 319, Sellersville PA 18960; also available from Umpqua & Orvis). Size 4/32; pearl or yellow with black pupil. I stay away from lead - I'd miss the loons. A heavier fly can be made by going up one size (to 5/32 or even 6/32); a lighter, slower-sinking fly can be made by using hollow bead-chain eyes, which are still sufficient to turn the fly over to fish inverted, and can be painted.
BELLY sparse white bucktail (fine, well-kinked), slightly shorter than wing length; do not stack
UNDERWING 4-8 strands pearl crystal flash; then sparse yellow Icelandic sheeps wool, 2/3 length of wing
GILLS (OPTIONAL) very sparse red antron dubbing tied very short just above the underwing
WING very sparse black bucktail (fine, with less kink; stacked to even tips); then sparse chocolate brown bucktail (fine, well-kinked; not stacked)
HEAD single layer of thread over wing materials, then clear fingernail polish thinned to penetrate

Will's Comments and Tying Instructions

Length of finished fly, 2 to 3 inches. I usually tie this for smallmouth, in the larger sizes (we have fabulous smallmouth fishing in the lower Penobscot River & the lakes of downeast Maine).

Mount hook upright in vice. Start thread 1/4 shank length back from eye and build a small bead with several wraps. Move back and build a similar bead to leave a "saddle" for the eyes. Mount the eyes on top the hook and bind with several figure-8 wraps, then several square lashing wraps (over one side of eye, under hook behind eyes, over other side of eye, under hook ahead of eyes, etc.); then several "fraps" (circular wraps around the square lashings - under eye, over hook, under eye, over hook, etc.) to tighten everything up. Finish with 2 half-hitches. Glue these wraps with a drop of zap-a-gap or flex-gap gap-filling super glue and allow to dry (try not to become one with your fly at this stage).

With hook still upright, tie in the belly; make this just a tad shorter than the desired wing length. Don't stack the white bucktail - the naturally staggered tips help give the fly its shape. I prefer for the belly and brown wing to use fine hair with good kink - this makes a more ragged-looking fly, but one that has more transluscency and better action in the water. Tie bucktail in in front of eyes, then cross under hook to behind eyes and wrap gently back (so as not to flare the hair) for 5-6 wraps, then forward again & cross back under hook to front of eyes.

Now remove from vice and re-mount with hook upside-down for the remainder of the fly.

Cut 2-4 strands of pearl crystal flash just over twice the desired wing length. Tie in at the middle just ahead of eyes, then wrap about 1/16" forward. Double back the ends sticking forward, and bind these down heading backwards, again just ahead of eyes. Trim unevenly, so that the longest strands are only slightly longer than the white belly. Don't worry if they stick out like a porcupine at this stage.

Cut a small section of yellow Icelandic sheep hair close to the skin. Pull out the short fluff and discard; pull out the long hairs & save for striper flies; cut a length of the intermediate length stuff (which will have hairs of varying length) about 2/3 the length of the desired wing. Tie in just ahead of eyes. This is to give just a hint of yellow transluscency to the fly, so don't go overboard.

Now cross over hook to behind the eyes & bind gently with 1 or 2 wraps (this keeps the crystal flash from flaring & keeps the wool close to the hook), then cross over hook to front of eyes again.

If you wish to add the gills, tie in a very short piece of red antron dubbing (less than 1/4" long) just ahead of the eyes & tease back over the underwing.

I stack the black bucktail for the wing as I want a very narrow, rather uniform band of black the length of the fly. If you have some hair with less kink, this will make a more uniform lateral stripe. Make this wing-length, slightly longer than the white belly, and tie in just ahead of the underwing wraps.

The brown bucktail is left unstacked, so the naturally-staggered ends leave the fly less dense at the tail. Although still sparse for transluscency and action in the water, this wing section is denser than the belly or black band. Tie in just ahead of the wraps for the black band. Cutting the butt-ends on a slight taper makes it easier to get a decent head.

Dave Clouser suggests putting a drop of penetrating cement on the bucktail butt-ends as you tie them in. This makes for a wicked durable fly, but I usually get by without.

Wrap a uniformly tapered head and whip-finish.

Saturate the head and the hairs just behind it with clear fingernail polish thinned to penetrate the thread and wing materials. This should render the pale yellow Flymaster thread transparent, so the wing materials will show through; the lateral black band should be visible through the head right to the eye of the hook, the dorsal head will be brown and the ventral head off-white.

Clousers sink nicely in deep & moving water, and have a very nice bobbing action on a stripped retrieve. The inverted hook prevents snags when fishing bottom, but may result in more eye- & roof-of-mouth hookups in salmonids (although I'm cautioned that this might be the case, my limited experience suggests it may not be so much a problem). I use this fly mostly for smallmouth fishing, but have had success with some large brookies as well. It's a great chub fly ;^) . These are good flies, along with bead-head buggers, for late-season drifting with a sinking line over springholes in lakes.

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