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My advice would be to watch one of Bob Clouser’s videos on tying the basic clouser.  Master the basic tie with bucktail and then experiment with other materials.  There are essentially an infinite number of variations that can be called the “Clouser style”.  Lots of different materials work well with the style, but mastering the fundamentals of the basic style is important.  Good Luck

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short answer is yes

craft fur will work for clousers and has been used for many years

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I tie clouser variants with synthetics regularly I'll use soft fibers like craft fur on smaller ones but generally prefer slightly stiffer material like congo hair and some of the flash and long dubbing fibers from fly tyers dungeon.

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Thanks guys.  I was thinking that the craft fur was too soft but like vicente said should be OK for # 6 and smaller.  Reason that I asked - had no bucktail  but have lots of craft fur.  Good information on the congo hair. 

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We used to tie them all the time here to fish for schoolie striped bass using craft fur as the material. We also used craft fur to tie sand eel patterns. And I still use it for baby herring patterns and small smelts for use in fresh water. That said there is something special about bucktail patterns too, to include the Clouser. Bucktail flies still work too lol !!

But ya, use what you got.

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On 6/21/2020 at 9:03 AM, GuyGP10 said:

Thanks guys.  I was thinking that the craft fur was too soft but like vicente said should be OK for # 6 and smaller.  Reason that I asked - had no bucktail  but have lots of craft fur.  Good information on the congo hair. 

In those small sizes I like using a wide gap hook like a b10s, sometimes I will use the umpqua u555 jig hooks as they're great quality and the price is very fair.

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For Clousers in #8 and #6 I like to use kid goat, which is not readily available right now.  Kid goat is thinner than bucktail, yet tapered just like bucktail.  Bucktail seems to overwhelm Clousers in the smaller sizes.  Synthetics and other natural material?  Bob Clouser's book, Clouser's Flies, circa 2006 explains how to tie his Deep Minnow with bucktail, Fur Strip Clouser, Super Hair Deep Minnow (Super Hair, Unique Hair, Kinky and Slinky Fibre) Kraft Fur, Foxee Redd Minnow (red fox tail fibers), Purple Darter  and Clouser Mad Tom (calf tail fibers),  and Clouser Swimming Nymph (marabou and speckled hen back).  Clouser advocates the use of Super Hair, etc. because of its durability, consistency, length, and translucency.  

The Clouser Deep Minnow is not a complicated fly to tie, but it is precise.  Bob Clouser has not changed the way he has tied it, since he showed me three times in the 80s and 90s.  Then, he used only bucktail and lead barbell eyes.  Now, he uses a variety of natural and synthetic materials and allows brass barbell eyes.  But I try to stick with red lead barbell eyes.  He told me wounded baitfish have blood clouded in their eyes, which predators know.  There is a YouTube video he produced on how to tie it, but it isn't the best quality video.  You need to pay attention to where the barbell eyes are mounted and how to secure them to the hook.  Lately, I've used white GSP thread to anchor the eyes.  I can crank hard on the thread without worry of breakage.  I also use a bit of CA adhesive over the wraps.  Since I tie a lot of Clousers, I first mount the barbell eyes on at least a dozen hooks before I tie the next step.  You can use about any thread to finish the fly.  I like UTC 140 for its strength and ability to cord or flatten easily at various steps.

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