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I love thinking about bugs and flies, on my mind as of late are the BWO’s that I’m sure I’m missing while stuck at work during the height of the day. One pattern that looks the part, easy to tie and gets great results down here is the standard WD-40 pattern. I like it for a couple reasons, the slim body, the wood duck feathers and it’s an easy, speedy tie that anyone can master quickly. With that said my box has plenty of WD-40’s in it, I’ve stuck with a #16 because it is the most representative of the full mature Baetis nymph. Thinking about bugs and flies I began to think about a WD-40 Brassie pattern that I’ve put together here, later I found that others have had the same revelation.

The WD-Brassie (W.F.F. Variant)

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  • Hook: 1x Short Scud #16
  • Thread: Olive 70 Denier UTC
  • Tail: Lt. Olive Woodduck
  • Body: Hot Yellow SM Ultra Wire
  • Thorax: Black Mink Fur
  • Wing-Case: Lt. Olive Woodduck

Things to note: to get a truly seamless body with the wire and to get the correct proportions, tie in the SM Ultra Wire near the hook eye and have it mirror the curve of the hook along the side facing you (not on top) and secure it back to the hook barb. When tying in the woodduck tail DO NOT clip the excess wooduck free (this will result in a bump making the wire wraps one too thick at the tail), rather wrap your thread over the woodduck to the point where you begin the thorax and wing-case. Leave it sticking out here and wrap the ultra wire forward, by keeping everything even up the length of the body the wire has a seamless resting spot with no bumps from materials that were tied in and cut free and you can use the woodduck from the tail to make the wing-case without tying more in. Using Mink fur was an experiment, I see future potential. The guard hairs are excellent but this was a challenge to dub with for the first time. I like the color contrast and I think the Hot Yellow will set the trout off, alot of our Baetis nymphs are either a darker olive/black or the light, almost translucent olive color. I’m thinking that the sun hitting the wire will appear like one of the translucent olive colored nymphs.

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  1. Thanks Ben, something Singlebarbed said a while back really stuck with me. Basically that with tying you only have one chance each time to get each element of the fly correct. You can’t go back and fix it, you can’t force a material to turn around the hook after the fact, it has to be done right the first time. Here, the slim body of this fly requires everything be smooth and even from the tail to the beginning of the thorax so that the wire wraps can be as close and even as possible. I really like the perfect wraps, I am a perfectionist to a fault and I sometimes sacrafice time to make it happen. Maybe a bit too much info but hey, you caught me at the right moment. Again, thanks for noticing I’m glad it doesn’t go un-noticed.

  2. Not at all. I’m the opposite. If I can’t make it happen after a couple of tries, I tie it as is and try to make the next one better. It definitely tries my patience sometimes. I like the Singlebarbed quote. I might have to write that up and put it over the fly tying station. Great flies again.


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