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Big Clousers

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I have need for clousers in the 5 to 5.5" range. I would like to use 2/0 hooks or larger. I have never tied them this large. I wanted to know what everyone likes to use for components. I really like using bucktail for them but would probably need to sub for clousers this large. What are the preferable hooks?

Thanks

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Mustad C52S BLN, or 3366, and REALLY GOOD bucktail if you can find it. I have a few bucktails with 5-1/2 to 6 inch hair, but they are from big northern bucks which I or my friends have shot. They are exceptionally rare to find in a shop, but every now and again you can pick a winner.

 

You might find yourself better served with tying Half-and-Halfs for flies that long if you can't find the best bucktails--- long saddle hackles in the rear with good bucktail to the fore. They look (and fish) extremely nice when tied with good materials.

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I tie some big Clousers for Striped bass. I started tying these years ago when I was tying commercially for folks wanting to go to South America & chase Peacock bass.

 

They're not your typical "sparse" Clouser, and they're not intended to be.

 

The hook is a 5/0 spinnerbait hook. The barbells are the biggest I can find. The "tail" is the longest bucktail I can get & is tied to the hook shank. I've also used Yak & Kanekalon synthetic hair to add length. The rest of the "body" is bucktail tied along the shank. The most forward bucktail is tied as a Clouser should be tied to give the proper shape.

 

As you can see there's a good amount of Holographic Flashabou in there too, but that can be anything you like, or none at all.

 

This fly is all bucktail & is about 7" long. Most are in the 5 to 6" length range due to the availability of long bucktail as Joel noted. With the Yak or Kanekalon you can make them any length you want, but get too long & you'll lose the shape.

 

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One of my daily, go to patterns with customers in the interior and gulf coast of the Everglades is a bug I call the Whitewater Clouser, done up on a 2/0 Mustad 34007 or on a jig hook. You'll note that it's a typical guide pattern, quick to tie up and simple materials. The only thing a bit unusual about it is the wire weedguard (a must for my area). Here are the pics of a few of them.

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There is plenty of buck tail out there with hair around 7 inches. It's usually labeled "Saltwater" or "Premium" buck tail. You can tie some pretty long closers with them, or as other said, go with the half and half top make them even longer

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The problem, if it is a problem, is that any bucktail which contains 7 inch hair, will have only a very small percentage of it that length. If you find a truly exceptional tail, perhaps 10 percent of the hairs will be the longest. For my longest bucktail flies, I save the very longest hairs from each bunch of hair I clip while tying my "regular" flies- especially the most used colors. It is a pain in the a$$ to try to keep bunches of 6 or 7 individual hairs together until there are enough of them to make a fly, but the results are worth it.

 

My experience over the last several years is that the bucktails labeled saltwater or premium are oftentimes no different than any other tails in the store. I tie with bucktail a lot, and it is one material I will absolutely not mail order. I know what I am looking for and won't spend my money on a tail which does not meet my preferences.

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Thanks guys y'all have been a big help. For white I usually use deer I shot but colored is a problem. I don't have an interest in dying. I'll try the half and half. How does it catch? Capt. Bob and Sandflyx thanks for the pics those are great flies. It was a nice day here. My 8 year old caught his first Lake Cumberland smallmouth today.

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Forgot to mention that I also have a method of "cheating" out an extension to come up with an offshore Clouser.... I use a 4/0 or larger Mustad 34007 hook and a bit longer bucktail... After tying in the eyes using fairly large lead eyes instead of the large beadchain eyes, then switching thread to tie in the underwing and flash (Pearl Flashabou, 10 or more strands doubled and staggered by one inch...) I then add a sparse amount of Flourofiber to extend the overall length of the bug to about five or six inches (or more if desired). With that done the fly is finished out with an overwing of fl. chartreuse bucktail (all my pics show a very yellow chartreuse -the real thing has a lot more green in it...) to complete the fly... Here's a pic of the end result....

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I have need for clousers in the 5 to 5.5" range. I would like to use 2/0 hooks or larger. I have never tied them this large. I wanted to know what everyone likes to use for components. I really like using bucktail for them but would probably need to sub for clousers this large. What are the preferable hooks?

Thanks

Use strong, rather stiff synthetec fibers. These big Clousers are used for big & toothy fish. This winter in Africa they had destroyed many of my bucktail flies.

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