Published Sep 13. 2023 - 8 months ago
Updated or edited Sep 13. 2023

Neoprene Beetle

This neat little beetle’s body is made from extruded neoprene cord, which is widely available and a really useful tying material

The Neoprene Beetle
The Neoprene Beetle
Nick Thomas

I’ve been using this one quite a bit lately for fishing small upland rivers with overhanging trees. These are prime places for trout to garner some extra nutrition from beetles and other bugs that lose their footing and fall helplessly into the water below.

The beetle’s body is made from extruded neoprene cord. This foam is widely available online, just search for neoprene rubber sponge cord. The closed cell material is made for making gaskets and for sealing gaps around windows frames etc. It comes in a range of sizes, with the 3mm, 4mm and 5mm diameters being the most useful for fly tying.

If you can’t get it then substitute round foam booby cord, but I think the smooth semi-gloss surface of extruded black neoprene looks more beetle-like.

Foam and rubber legs
Top and bottom
Simple and easy to tie
Nick Thomas
Small stream
Nick Thomas
Small terrestrial
Small terrestrial
Nick Thomas
Neoprene Beetle
Pattern type: 
Nick Thomas

Foam and rubber legs and easy to tie

Fasna F-210 #14
12/0 black
Get Slotted dark green Silli Legs
3mm black neoprene foam cord, black vicuna dubbing and green SLF
Pink poly yarn
Skill level/difficulty: 
Very easy
  1. Run on the tying thread, take down to the bend in touching turns and back up the hook.
  2. Cut two pieces of neoprene about twice the length of the hook and tie them in along the sides of the hook with the ends hanging off the back.
  3. Wrap the thread back and forth to compress the foam.
  4. Add a dab of superglue to the thread wraps to hold everything in place.
  5. Dub over the compressed foam to build a fat body.
  6. Bring the ends of the foam forward along the sides of the hook and secure with tight thread wraps to splay out the ends of the foam.
  7. Tie in the legs on either side of the body.
  8. Fold a piece of poly yarn around the thread and tie in on top.
  9. Smear the thread with varnish, whip finish and cut the thread.
  10. Cut the front ends of the foam to form the beetle’s head and then trim the legs and poly yarn to length.

The Neoprene Beetle is an effective fly for fishing on its own, or as an indicator with a nymph hanging underneath in a duo. With the bright pink sighter, you shouldn’t miss any takes as the beetle disappears.

Fishing the beetle
Fishing the beetle
Nick Thomas
The catch
The catch
Nick Thomas

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