Friday, March 20, 2015

Quick and Easy Crab Pattern Step by Step (HELMET CRAB)

Yesterday night I sat at the vice filling up a "beach" box. A small box I'll carry when I fish the beach in downtime. They are mostly small simple patterns (clousers, frankenshrimp, glass minnows, etc) that are known to be a good choice for the beach. While sitting there, I had a real quick bout of inspiration! An "AHA!" moment, so to speak. So I grabbed some material and started tying. Luckily enough, I took some pictures along the way so you can give it a shot as well. 

Behold the Helmet Crab (didn't google this to see if its a real crab or someones existing don't get mad if it is!!.) 

Material List:

Gamakatsu SL45 Hook size #4
Flymen Fishing Company Mini Sculpin Helmet- Brown
Dark Brown Bucktail
Copper Krystal Flash
Brown Artic Fox
Crustacean Eyes (you can make them or buy them)
Orange Palmer Chenille
Enrico Puglisi Streamer Brush- Rust
Rubber Legs

Step 1: Take super sharp gamakatsu sl45 and mount it in appropriate vise. In my case..peak vise. Love it. 

Step 2: Clip a piece of brown bucktail from the hide. You want the bucktail thats towards the bottom of the tail. After you cut if off the hide clean out the small hairs and under fur and tie it on. I tie it from the eye back to the bend of the hook. It helps add bulk for the sculpin helmet later on. 

Step 3: At this point I rotate the vise as you see above..Add copper crystal flash. This step is kind of preference. Some people like a lot of flash, some like a little. I kind of go middle of the road. Depending on the area I am fishing I may change one way or the other to suite the needs. 

Step 4: I add the arctic fox in two bunches. One on each side of the hook. I cut the fur off the hide, pull out the underfur, and also pull out some of the long guard hairs. I then taper the fox a little bit and tie it in. Wrap it down tightly and glue if you'd like. 

Step 5: Adding the crustacean eyes. I love these crustacean eyes. I think they really make your flies pop. In any case, I used red ones for this fly. I cut the mono stem on the eyes to size then take pliers and flatten it out. I do this because it reduces bulk and I also think it secures better. 

Step 6: Rubber legs! I used cinnamon/fleck colored legs. I use one leg doubled over on each side. I don't make the legs even with each. I like to stagger the ends a bit. I leave them long, but of course this is preference. 

Step 7: Tie in plamer chenille at the rear of the hook, just in front of the arctic fox. I do 3-4 wraps of palmer chenille then tie it off and clip the excess. I actually would've preferred to use EP sparkle brush here but I ran out! Gotta use what you have! 

Step 8: Tie in and secure brush in front of the palmer chenille. Move thread forward to the eye and wrap brush forward. While wrapping brush forward stroke fibers to rear so they tie don't get trapped under the wraps. Clip excess and secure. Whip finish and cut thread. 

Step 9: Test fit the sculpin helmet. You want it to be snug. Cover thread with gel superglue or epoxy of your choice. Slide the sculpin helmet on and secure some thread wraps behind the eye of the hook. 

The next step is another area where you can use preference. I brush out the fly and use serrated scissors to do a little bit of trimming. I trim the bottom of the fly flush and open up the hook gap a little bit. Hopefully you found this step by step useful. Tie a few up and give them a swim. I certainly think this will catch in the salt and I'm already thinking of trying it on carp up in Michigan as well.  

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