Full Motion Crayfish
by Ken Collins - December 29, 1999

A solid thread base and a drop of Super Glue helps keep the eyes in place. This fly will ride hook point up, a real bonus for a bottom crawling crayfish imitation.

The orange antron is very visible and helps fish see the fly. The rabbit fur makes for more motion up front. The furry foam makes a realistic shell back of real crayfish. It can be tied in a variety of colors to match local crayfish. Tan, beige, rust, olive and brown are favorite colors.

Rabbit fur makes for great claws as they have both profile and action. The rubber legs add more motion and realism to the fly. The rabbit body also makes for a fly with motion and a realistic shape. Pulling the rabbit fur forward before ribbing the fly will make for a neater fly. Do not worry about trapping fibers under the abdomen. This area is supposed to be thin in profile. The finished fly sinks well with the hook point up out of the rocks and with a realistic action.

Couple this with it's realistic profile and this crayfish pattern will help you catch more fish.

Full Motion Crayfish Steps

Hook and eyes
Place the hook in the vise, attach thread and wrap entire hook shank with thread finishing at the eye of the hook end - tie hour glass eyes with figure 8 wraps (the placement of these eyes is critical for fly operation in water so remember don't crowd the eye of the hook and tie 5 to 7mm back from the base of eye of hook)

Antennae and attractor
Move thread to bend of hook - tie in antennae PT filaments at bend of the hook -- Now tie in on top of PT antennas a small clump of antron strands half the length of antennae.

Furry foam
Turn the hook over in the vise and tie in a 1 cm wide strip of furry foam about 4 or 5cm in length. Yes you are tying with hook upside down (beware of hook point it hurts).

Legs and Strip
Tie in 2 strands (about 15cm) rubber legs – first fold them in half and then tie them at the half way point so equal lengths are to either side of fly pattern (cut the folded loop section now to make them look perfectly similar on each side of fly) Fasten a piece of zonker strip right at same intersection point as rubber legs –now wrap thread to eye of hook - then wrap rabbit strip clockwise the remaining length of hook shank – tie off rabbit strip and trim extra away.

Claws and underbody
wet your non bobbin hand pinching fingers and message all rabbit hair filaments backwards towards hook bend (beware of hook point)– now wrap thread backwards over top of these strands – only go half way back!! Leave bobbin dangling for thread tension while you now pull furry foam strip over entire fly pattern – re grab the bobbin and wrap first section of crayfish shell (this should be not be pulled as tight as you do the next section of the shell – this allows the natural taper of the crayfish shell to be represented) Now wrap 4 to 5 turns of widely spaced thread (this gives the segmented look) to final portion of crayfish

Shell, rear fin and finish
fasten the end of furry with two extra wraps of thread – continue wrapping more thread while you hold the extra piece of furry foam out of the way – whip finish the thread and head cement properly – NOW trim the furry foam to the proper caudal fin looking length of 5 to 7mm past the eye of the hook.

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