For October’s fly of the month, Blake revisited the crab slider that he and I use a lot down here in Louisiana for redfish. His original tie can be found here: http://www.laflyfish.com/cgi-bin/bforum/viewtopic.php?id=1929. I like the addition of the claws on this new version, though to me it makes the fly look like more of a crawfish. Either way it imitates a crustacean and that is all that matters to a redfish.
Thread – Heavy enough to flair hair
1. Start thread and tie in your choice of eyes. I like dumbbell eyes. Cover everything with a coat of superglue.
2. In order to make sure that this fly turns over in the water, I will tie in two layers of lead wire on top of the hook. Normally the deer hair wing and dumbbell eyes on opposing sides of the hook are enough to turn the fly over, but I add the lead just to make sure. I like to coat everything with a thin superglue to keep all that lead on one side of the hook.
3. Strip a small amount of material from the core of the chenille and wrap around the shank to make a small ball. This will help splay out the zonker strips. Tie off.
4. Cut two small sections of zonker about an inch long and cut the hair from the tie-in area on both pieces. I normally start with the strips a little longer and cut them to the right proportions after the fly is done. Tie one zonker on either side of the hook. Wrap them up tight to the ball of chenille so that they splay out to either side. I like to touch the part of the zonker hide right at the tie-in to about half of the strip with some superglue to stiffen it. I think this increases the amount that the claws stick out to the side.
5. Wrap a little dubbing behind the claws and then tie in your eyes. The eyes that I used are just glass beads glued on some mono then dipped in 5 minute epoxy. Then they are spun on a dryer until the epoxy is cured. Dub the eyes once they are tied in using figure 8 wraps.
6. Tie in your choice of rib material and a pretty webby feather.
7. Dub the rest of the shank to right behind the dumbbell eyes.
8. Palmer the feather; tie in. Then counter wrap with your rib; tie in.
9. I like to trim the feather fibers on the top and bottom of the hook.
10. Take a dubbing brush and scrub the body to get some of the dubbing fibers teased out. This also helps to get the feather fibers to lie back towards the bend of the hook.
11. Bring thread behind the dumbbell eyes and flair a decent clump of deer hair with the tips extending to the crab eyes. I normally like the hair a bit longer than it is on this fly, but I doubt it is that important. Whip finish thread between the dumbbell eyes and the hook eye.
12. Trim the deer hair butts to your desired shape. I try to go a little flat on the top and wide on the sides
13. Finished Fly