Going to tie some Clousers.. What weight eyes are best suited to cast with 7-8 weight lines? I have 1/20, 1/30, 1/40, and 1/60 oz lead eyes. Bob Clouser's book lists 1/20 oz eyes in the 'original Clouser' recipe, but I have found something that heavy difficult to cast. I am leaning toward 1/40 oz. I am curious what others use.
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What weight dumbbell eyes for Clousers?
Posted 07 February 2018 - 01:39 PM
I use 1/32, i like the spirit river eyes for this. the bigger question is what hook size? I tie alot on 1/0 and 2/0
Posted 07 February 2018 - 01:40 PM
I could use any of those, I normally use bead chain though. Just enough to make the hook ride up or plenty to make the fly a jig.
My take on it is deeper equals heavier and faster equals heavier and both deep and fast equal heaviest. I also don't false cast much if any. Shorter level leader and full floating line either level or long belly, using a semi-spey roll cast is normal for me if fishing bass streams.
With 6-7-8-9wt line I have fished jigs up to 1/8 in fast water. Heavy also equals short casts and more work and that is why I use bead chain a lot.. 1/16 & 1/8 are almost fished Tenkara style in deep swift runs.
I suggest trying a couple each on your water and seeing what works on your water for you.
>>Yes, hook size. Mine are normally #2-6, I'd probably go bigger on a bigger hook. Thinking more material to sink.
Edited by tjm, 07 February 2018 - 01:46 PM.
Posted 07 February 2018 - 02:19 PM
Unfortunately, all my dumbbell eyes are out of their original bags. So I go more by size than what they weigh. What size hook are you using? Most of my Clousers are tied on size 1 and 1/0 hooks. Are they heavy enough to insure the hook rides point up? Since I'm not using mine to dredge the bottom I'll use the smallest/lightest size that will make the hook ride up. If I want to bounce the fly along the bottom I'll fish it off a sink tip or intermediate line rather than use a heavier pair of dumbbells. As tjm said tie up a couple of each using different sizes dumbbells and see which works best for you. Remember the Clouser is a sparsely tied fly it doesn't take a whole lot of weight to make it sit correctly.
Posted 07 February 2018 - 07:05 PM
You should have no issues casting them with an 8wt. You may not get sexy loops but opening the loop up is normal with weighted streamers.
Posted 08 February 2018 - 01:12 PM
As you get into doing Clousers make a point of doing a few of the originals - the way Bob Clouser did them all those years ago. That way you'll have a better idea of what you need for your application. As a saltwater tyer I do clouser style flies in a variety of sizes, colors, and with different types of eyes - everything from lead up to beadchain .... It's also a very useful exercise to do an occasional one with a bit heavier or lighter eye than you normally do (they'll come in handy for different conditions in current or depth where fish are holding..). Here's a few pics that show some of the range I'm talking about from small bonefish bugs - all the way up to much bigger flies for fishing mangrove jungle shorelines where it's trout, snook, and redfish we're hunting... Note that unlike most clouser style flies you'll see - all of mine are tied the way Lefty Kreh mentioned when he did that first article on Clouser's invention (that's well more than 35 years ago now...). He mentioned that he preferred the entire wing on one side of the hook - and that's the way I've done most of mine....
The Whitewater clouser - on a 2/0 Mustad 34007 hook - this simple "guide pattern" is one of the bugs I have my anglers set up with when we're working heavy cover along mangrove jungle shorelines... Note the wire weedguard and the largest size bead chain eyes...
This bonefish clouser is in size #4 - I've done them for shops as large as a #1 and as small as a #6 - at each size change the eyes get smaller or larger (as does the wing...). Note the special "outrigger style" weedguard - perfect for allowing the bug to sink into turtle grass then be retrieved a bit without snagging... For a #4 hook I'm using 20lb mono for a #6 -15lb mono.
More of the same - #4's on the left, #6's on the right - note the slightly smaller wing and eyes on the #6 flies.... I used to do these bonefish bugs for shops in great numbers with the following colors, tan/white, pink/white, fl. chartreuse/white. Very effective bugs that aren't exactly what most think of as bonefish flies.... always done up as sparse as possible...
Posted 08 February 2018 - 09:28 PM
It's funny that Lefty Kreh first described them this way. I first learned to tie by watching an instructional video in which Lefty tied it the way Clouser does with the wing on the bottom. I wonder if he switched or was just adhering to the original pattern since it was an instructional video. In any case, I like tying them this way with the wing on one side. It works great and is a lot faster to tie. I love the idea of the "outrigger" style weed guard for turtle grass. I fish a lot of flats up here that are miles of thick turtle grass, I'll have to try these out.
Posted 09 February 2018 - 06:09 AM
Here's a quick "how to" on outriggers... Tie up the eyes and just before tying in the wing - tie in a mono loop first, then the wing with the loop under it and facing forward. As you finish up the head, pull the loop back and do a few turns of thread in front of the loop before finally whip finishing it. Before touching the thread with super glue cut the loop dead center leaving the two arms free-standing then using the edge of a finger nail and thumb stroke the outside of each outrigger (like you would a ribbon to remove the curve and straighten each arm....). Now all that remains is the super glue and you're finished.
I only use outriggers on bonefish or permit patterns (for flies that are tied with hook point up that are meant to rest on the bottom before being hopped along slowly as the fish approaches...). This style of weedguard works for crab flies particularly well and the fish never seem to notice them. Many years ago Chico Fernandez saw them and was nice enough not to write anything about them (I had planned an article that never came to pass...). This style of weedguard actually came about as an accident (I was trying to tie in a "mustache" style of weedguard and it came out with the outriggers angled forward..). It worked so well that I've been tying with them for many years... You can actually tie one of these bugs on a leader and drag it over a grass lawn and never snag it at all...
Posted 01 March 2018 - 09:04 AM
One important item is immediately after the rod stop on forward cast,,,, move the rod tip towards your body center line. This prevents an errant cast with low loop from crashing into the rod and breaking the tip.
Posted 02 March 2018 - 10:29 AM
I'm probably late on this one...
I use small to medium on mine. Those sizes are easier to cast, and, as a bonus, I can throw them with the six weight.