This is a fairly easy way to make crab patterns
that doesn't include a whole lot of tying. Its more like model making!
or brown thread 6/0 or similar.
(I use Z-Poxy becasue I can get it in large amounts)
and felt tip pens
fly line (I'm using Rio T14 sinking line here for extra weight, but any will do)
34007 hooks in size 1 or 1/0 (depending on size of crab tied)
sticks (for mixing Epoxy)
start off, we need to get artistic. If you plan on making these it pays to make
them 10 at a time so it's a lot less work. If you plan on making more than that
it mak help to make a little cardboard template so you get your shells the same
size each time.
your template and draw 10 shell shapes (carapace) on the paper and colour them
in as required.
I usually do 5 light and 5 dark and fish the dark patterns over light ground and
light patterns over dark ground. Let your inagination run wild with this! You
can leave blank paper patches as a white fleck.
enough 5 minute epoxy to do all 10 shells to a thickness of about 2mm Using a
cocktail stick, fill in the outline and centre to about 2 mm deep and let them
set. The shape the epoxy takes is the shape of the shell so be careful but work
quickly enough so the Epoxy doesn't go off before you finish.
out the shells you've made around the outside of the Epoxy and place to one side.
thre thread on the hook (hook right way up) and tie Dumbells on the top of the
shank at the front.
Take three pieces of fly line running line (the
thin stuff) and cut 3 pieces to about 6 to 10 cm long. Bend each piece to the
shapes above and lay out as shown.
Glue each piece in place leaving at least the
width of the hook shank between them (important!) Its usually easier to set
them up and then apply the glue once they are in place. one spot usually does
it. Only glue them in the centre.
Take a matching pair of grizzled hackle points
and pluck out the tips leaving a claw shaped end on each. measure them up to the
hook and strip the barbules off and tie in so then are about 3 cm long.
Turn the hook over and tie in so they are at 90
degrees and in the centre of the hook shank with the point of the hook on the
your finished shell and legs and superglue it to the hook so the hook shank is
between the middle and back legs.Tuck the Claws under the front legs so they point
out straight. (this is why you only glue the legs in the middle)
Place the hook with the glued on shell on the bottom
of the shank and mix some more epoxy. Have a spare piece of foam handy so you
can place them in it to dry as you do the next if you are doing 10 at a time.
Cover the entire bottom of the shell in epoxy going right to the edge of the shell
and getting in between the legs. No need to build it up too high, just make sure
it's covered. Let it dry.
profile of the finished crab, from the side, should look like this. Trim the legs
to the right proportion. The longer you leave them the less the crab will spin
in the air when casting. Fish the fly on a sinker along the bottom for best results
or tie it without dumbells of you want to fish it dead drift in rough water. either
way it is easy to cast.
that's it, you have crabs!
tying and if you have any problems, We're in the
Carl Hutchinson is a qualified instructor
with the EFFA and FFFUSA and runs saltwater fly fishing Mullet with www.corporateflyfishing.com He is
a member of the 55 yard club and current Roxtons International Saltwater Fly Casting
Champion and has fished extensively in many saltwater locations and specialises
in saltwater fly fishing for Salmon in Canada.