Wednesday, April 24, 2013

ACF Step By Step: Junk Yard Dog

I have had people asking about this fly for a few months now and have not been able to get the time set aside to compete a step by step for it, but a few weeks ago that changed and I was able to get the shots.  This is a large weightless fly that is best fished on a full sinking line, and has a great swimming motion especially when retrieved with short and hard stopping strips.  Tie some up and have at it!

UTC140 denier, brown
Gamakatsu SP11 3L3H size 1
Gamakatsu B10S size 2/0
Marabou, tan
Polar chenille, UV Copper
Marabou, tan
Arctic Fox tail, rusty brown
Arctic Fox tail, dark tan
Senyo Laser Dub, Dark Tan
8mm Clear Cure Dumbbell eyes, steel
Beadalon, 19 strand .018"

STEP 1:  With your Gamakatsu SP11 3L3H size 1 in the vise get your thread started and wrapped to about mid-shank.  Secure a single marabou feather hanging off the back of the hook approximately one shank length.  Clip the excess about an eigth of an inch behind the eye and bind the feather to the top of the hook shank.  End with your thread at the rear of the shank, with your thread hanging down halfwy betweenthe hook point and the barb..

STEP 2:  At the rear tie in point, located above the midway point between the hook point and the barb, tie in the Polar Chenille then wrap your thread forward nearly to the eye.  Palmer the Polar Chenille forward taking care not to bind any of the pieces to the shank.  Once behind the eye then secure the material with a few tight wraps of thred then clip the excess.

STEP 3:  The next step will be to make a marabou veil over the back hook.   Prepare the marabou feather by coming down from the tip and trimming  out the top by clipping the center stem at the point where the fibers are long enough to reach past the Polar Chenille once wrapped around the shank.

STEP 4:  To form the veil I hold the marabou on top far side of the hook shank, using your left hand to hold lightly you push down the far side of the shank with your index finger to start the feather around the shank.  Come over the top of the shank with a loose wrap of thread and then tighten straight down with the thread and use the thread tension to pull the marabou up the close side of the shank.  The result is that you spin the marabou similar to how you would spin deer hair.  Once the marabou is all the way around the hook shank then you can carefully trim the butt sections behind the eye and make a few wraps over them, advancing your thread to just behind the eye of the hook.

STEP 5:  The last material on the rear hook will be a topping of Arctic Fox tail.  Take a pinch of Arctic Fox Tail and tie it in with the tips hanging out over the eye of the hook.

STEP 6:  Use your thumb to reverse the Arctic Fox Tail back over the rear hook and then bind it down on top of the shank with a half dozen wraps or so in a tidy bullet head.  Whip finish over those wraps and the back hook is complete.

STEP 7:  To connect the rear hook to the front hook you will use a 4" piece of 19 strand .018" Beadalon with a few beads to close the gap.  Place your B10S size 2/0 in the vise and then secure the back hook with tightly wrapped crossing wraps of thread up and down the shank of the hook.  Make sure that the loop is vertical in the back once bound down so that the rear hook will have unimpeeded movement.

STEP 8:  Wrap the thread forward about one third of the hook shank and there we will add the marabou for the mid-body section.  Take two fluffy marabou feathers and hold them on top of the hook shank, then use the thread tension to help spin them to encircle the shank (similar to how you formed the veail on the rear hook).  Once spun around the shank then make a few security wraps before trimming the excess, then wrap over the butt sections.  If you prefer, an alternative method is to tie in a feather on to of the shank and one underneath.

STEP 9:  The eye on the JYD is an 8mm Clear Cure Dumbbell eye in the steel color.  Figure eight in a set of the eyes on the underside of the hook shank.  The front edge of the dumbbell eyes should be just back of the eye of the hook.

STEP 10:  To give the front hook the bulk to make the fly push water but still be light, we will hollow tie a fox tail collar.  At about mid shank you will take the lighter color Arctic Fox Tail and spin it around the hook shank, with the tips out over the eyes.  Once spun in place then work your thread through and make a few wraps at the base of the hair, then advance your thread about to the rear of the dumbbell eyes.

STEP 11:  Just behind the eyes spin in a second darker color of Arctic Fox Tail, hollow tied as in the last step.  The butt sections of the second color should be tied in over the top of the hair from the first stack, and will help to hold the hair back as a collar.

STEP 12:  To create the head of the fly we will clump tie in four stacks of dark tan Senyo Laser Dub.  To prep the materiaal for each step you will separate and stack the Laser Dub so that the fibers all line up in the same general direction and are about the same length. For each stack you will tie in the Laser Dub with two or three tight wraps directly on top of each other, then pull the material back out of the way and secure with two wraps at the base of the material. You will tie in one stack on top of the hook shank just behind the eyes, then one on the bottom of the shank.  Then tie in a stack on the bottom of the shank in front of the eyes and finish with one more stack on top of the shank in front of the eyes.  Pull all the Laser Dub back out of the way and whip finish right at the eye of the hook.

STEP 13:  To finish the head of the fly we will make two cuts.  Pull the Laser Dub vertical on top of the hook shank and make one cut from the eye of the hook on a upward angle from the eye of the hook to just above the dumbbell eyes, and then make the final cut from the eye of the hook on a downward angle just below those eyes.  The result is a wide wedge-cut head that will push a bunch of water and make the fly move like crazy when stripped.

-mike schmidt


  1. I love this fly, thanks for posting Mike!

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