We recently ran a post asking you what topics you’d like to see more of. More posts on fly tying was a common request and guess what – we listened! In fact, we reached out to Stuart Foxall, world class fly designer and Deneki host for some state of the art tying content.
Part of Loop Tackle’s development team and fly designer for Aqua Flies, Stu’s flies are fished all over the world. You owe it to yourself to check out some of his patterns. So, without further ado, here’s Stuart with a great tip on tying better dubbing balls. Thanks Stu!
Quicker, Easier, and Better Looking Dubbing Balls
I’ve been tying flies for over 30 years now and I have to say Intruders have really ignited my imagination. The different styles and forms that you can tie are infinite.
When I first started tying them I always used dubbing in a dubbing loop (the usual way of tying the dubbing balls) as I preferred the look compared to chenille dubbing balls. However, it wasn’t until I was asked to design some patterns commercially that I started to look at the patterns differently. How could I get the same function and efficiency of the dubbing ball but save time??? I think that I came up with the answer and actually came up with something better in the process! I started using a product called Blob Fritz. It is made by numerous different brands and is cheap, quick, and comes in numerous colors… What’s not to like?
Tying With Blob Fritz
- Strip the Fritz to show its core. This makes it much easier to tie in tidily.
- Give it 3 or 4 wraps around the shank (or tube) to construct as tight and compact a ball as possible. This gives a much firmer base to help “flare” the other materials that will follow like hair, rhea, or marabou. I think it also saves me about five minutes a fly compared to two dubbing loops for the tail section and head section of the fly.
- More importantly it give’s a really bright “hot spot” that the fish can’t miss. When the other materials are swimming about in the water these hot spots really show up well to entice aggressive strikes from any willing fish. The only other thing to do is tie the fly on, cast, swing and hold on tight!