This nymph blend from Wapsi was one of the first dubbing packages that I bought and I have gone through quite a few packages, I don’t know if it is because I started out with this or if it is because I really like it! The blend is easy to work with and gives a life in nymphs (and slender emerger bodies) that I appreciate.
The blend is a good mixture between fine and long fibers
Dubbing on the thread is very easy: can be applied both in a thin and quite a thick layer on the thread
Dubbed on a Mustad 94840 #14 here, the long fibers tend to stick out and give lots of life to the body
On a Dai-Riki 135 #14 hook, with Hareline Scudback 1/8″ and Ultra wire wrapped. Here the blend comes through to its name and creates long nice legs on the fly
Bead-size to hook size: there are a lot of references out there that will tell you that this-size bead should match up to that-size hook, but I’m more of a visual guy and like to see how things will be when added to a hook. You can get beads from a lot of suppliers in different variations, but here I am showing a 3.0mm tungsten Bead bought from flysite.co.nz. The hooks presented here are the ones I have available at the moment, working on getting more styles of hooks available and will update this article as I get more.
A 3.0mm bead should be 3.0mm (!) from all suppliers, but you will of course get some small variations in the hole that the hook goes through, so if you get it on might be tricky in the top/lower level of what a bead should be used for in terms of hook size.
I will cover 2.5mm and smaller in a later post
Mustad 94840 #12
Mustad 94840 #14
Mustad 94840 #16
TMC 2457 #10
TMC 2457 #12
TMC 2557 #14
Daiichi 1260 #12
Knapek Midge Pupae #14
Knapek Midge Pupae #16
TMC 5263 #12
The Extra Fine Poly Dubbing from Fly-Rite is made of polypropylene (on wikipedia if you want to read up some more on this) and is very good for slender bodies and dry-flies. The material is very easy to work with and goes on the thread with no problems. For now I only have this in golden yellow, but would like to get this in a few more colors to work with on emergers.
The individual fibers are very long:
It goes on the thread (here a Sheer 14/0) very easy and does not build up to something big and bulky
This is a Mustad 44840 #14, and I have tried to build up as small as possible: the body gets very slim and is just thicker than the hook.
Here you can see the reason why I like this on small flies: here on a Gamakatsu C12-BM #30, without much effort you get a body on even these small hooks
The Hends Superfine is one I have a few colors of and use if I need to create a thin body for dryflies, or for slender nymphs/wetfiles that needs a bit of body.
As you can see: lot of thin, long fibers that makes it easy to apply to the thread
Maybe not the best of pictures, but you can see that you don’t need much to cover the thread
Dubbing a Mustad 9480 #14: it makes a slender body that doesn’t take much space
One of the good properties of the Superfine is the ability to create bodies on very small hooks: here is a TMC 518 #30 with only a few strands of the dubbing to create a tiny body
This is the Squirrel Spikey Dubbing SLFS-11: Fox, Natural
As you can see: a lot of long fibers in this one
Tying in on a Mustad 9480 #14
The coarse blend really shows up once you get it on the hook:
Here I have wrapped ultra wire around the hook and brushed it to show how it will drag out:
Finally trimmed down with scissors:
The dubbing is easy to work with on the thread – it dubs easily and doesn’t give much resistant when applying to the hook. It does, however, have a lot of long fibers, so this is not for the smallest dry-flies, but can give a nice scruffiness to your fly.