The first time I held some Craft Fur in my hands, I immediately fell in love with this stuff. It has every thing real hair has, but since it’s synthetic, it doesn’t hold any water (or a lot less). And the way it moves in the water is just beautiful! But it has one big disadvantage, its length. And although we have some good quality Craft Fur in our shop (up to 10cm), it still is rather short to use it as tail material for pike flies. But since the arrival of articulated shanks, a whole new world has opened its doors!
So for the flies I’ve tied, I used this setup:
A Partridge Universal Predator X, size 6/0 for the hook, and a 35mm Partridge Intruder shank. This resulted in 18 to 19cm for the total length of the flies. After tying in a clump of Craft Fur at the end of the shank (the tip of the tail), I used one brush of Craft Fur, mixed with Polar Flash, for the rest of the shank. And a second brush for the hook (behind the head). So these flies are very bulky with little material (try to have the same volume with just tying the stuff in, you would need about four times that amount).
On these first two flies, I made the heads with a brush of EP Fibre, mixed with Craft Fur (and then cut into shape of course). The reason I mixed both materials is because I found that the colours of the EP didn’t match to well with the colours of the Craft Fur (I know the pike wouldn’t mind, but I would). So by mixing the stuff, the colours come pretty close.
And I tied a dusk & dawn version as well.
On this last one, I didn’t mix any flash in. And I had a little problem; I was out of black EP. But I really wanted to finish the fly, so I came up with an alternative. I used Polar Fox, again mixed with Craft Fur (this time because I found that the Polar Fox was too dull compared to the shiny black of the Craft Fur).
It was the first time I made a brush with Polar Fox, but it was a lot easier than I thought it would be. Of course, the fly will be heavier to cast once wet, but I can live with that.
And speaking of casting, I’m developing a serious itch to go out there again. But it’s raining all the time and my nose and throat are producing some weird fluids at the moment, so it would be wiser to stay indoors, until I can breathe normally again…