I’ve been experimenting with racoon, until I got to this pattern, which I think has great potential (I’ve tested them already, and they look very good in the water).
This is white racoon with pink chenille
It’s a bit hard to explain how I made them, so I did a ‘step by step’ to make it easier.
Click on any image to enlarge.
Put your thread on the hook
Tie in some flash material (this is polar flash)
Then tie in some chenille (this Vampire Plush)
Wrap the chenille two times around the hook shank (although this depends on the chenille you use, with Krystal Chenille for example, I’ve used three wraps), and tie it in
Tie in some racoon, and spread it equally around the top of the hook shank
Repeat the last two steps up to the hook eye
(a couple of mm in front of it)
Tie in some racoon around the bottom of the hook shank
Glue on some eyes (or like I did, some sequins, since epoxy is the next step, so these will look like epoxy eyes)
This might be interesting
(if you aren’t using them already).
These are hair clips, which are very practical while tying or drying (pike) flies (after using epoxy). They come in all shapes and sizes.
I got this from Ken Capsey from www.pikeadventures.blogspot.com
and they are damn handy!
Epoxy the head
Normally I comb out a lot of fur, but with this racoon, I didn’t, because unlike other fur, the stuff you leave in, doesn’t just absorb water and lay flat, but it actually keeps it’s volume…
as you can see on this picture.
This is the same fly when wet.
And some other colours.
These are all about 9 cm long, tied on a Gamakatsu F 314, size 1.
Yellow racoon and red chenille
White and chartreuse racoon with red chenille
These are two flies from the experimental stage of the pattern above (they are tied on a hook that’s to big for this pattern, although that’s personal of course).
They are easier to tie, and certainly very functional as well.
I’ve just tied in the racoon on top of the hook shank.
Actually, I like using racoon. It’s durable, it keeps it’s volume, and has a great movement in the water. But this stuff is not very common here in Belgium, which makes it hard to find, and even if you do find it, they ask an absurd price for it. So, ordering it on the internet is the perfect alternative, but the problem with ordering stuff from internet shops, especially natural material, is that the example they put on their site, looks a hundred times better then the stuff you receive at home!
So if anyone can give me a good tip for ordering reasonably priced, good quality racoon zonker strips, please let me know…