some anthropomorpher might say something like “Oh, the things he’s seen” and i’d go all nerd and shit and tell the morpher that Fran is short for Francesca, doesn’t have eyes and isn’t about to tell you anything at all about all the things it didn’t see and even if it did see and have a mouth, one would have to wonder why it would communicate at all with such a small, soft, short-lived creature that constantly struggles to stand on its two feet.
they don’t look like anything in particular, just some general bug-type shape with just enough bug-type elements that suggest food and colour contrasts to set them apart from river debris and nothing more. in a sense, they epitomise the presentation over imitation concept. here’s a few examples:
at first glance they look like nuclear waste candies and as always and specially when dealing with non-immitative flies, colours are mostly up to the tier’s whim. personally, and since i never specifically target grayling because i can’t stand the f’n things… preferring to focus my attention on trout and other less offensive creatures, i like them best in naturalish tones with a black head. that’s my whim.
these things consist of a lead or lead substitute wire wound around the hook shank to form the body followed by several layers of ceramic hobby paint to finish the fly. Pébéo seems to be the preferred brand, it’s available in small pots and even in pen form. i’m not familiar with the pens but it seems to be a fast, easy and maybe less expensive alternative for the person who might want to just try these out or make just a few.
there’s no traditional ‘tying’ involved in the process. traditionalists will of course poo-poo these things and not even consider them as flies but the hell with them. traditional flies can’t do what these do which brings us to the ‘what they do’ part-
apart from the Perdigon style of nymphs, every other style of nymph that i know of has sink-restraining elements: feathers, fur, dubbing, rubber or whatever protuberances that slow down and make it more difficult to get the flies on or near the bottom and that’s what these deep-divers are supposed to do. sink-restraining flies can get to the bottom too but they need more time and an enormous amount of weight to counter their sink-restraining properties but once there, and even if they catch fish sometimes and look ‘good’, they’ll tend to drift like big lifeless, unnatural lumps.
sleek deep-divers like Perdigons and Ceramics do indeed have some form of weight but much less. being super-sleek they cut through currents faster, get where they’re supposed to go faster, meaning the angler doesn’t have to cast as far upstream and wait for it to settle, making the presentation a lot more accurate in drift management while freely tumbling downstream with the current much closer to what a natural would do and that’s a lot more important and fish-catching than bits and pieces wound on a hook that attract the angler more than the fish.
an added bonus is lighter flies are a lot easier to cast (and safer) specially when using industry standard fly lines as opposed to Dynamic/Euro/TightLine/monofilament-only rigs.
as we’ll see in Stanislas Freyheit‘s video below this particular type of paint has some really interesting properties, the only drawback might be that its best (and highly recommended!) to wait approximately 24 hrs between coats. this means making them in batches and being patient, sort of like making babies and having to wait nine months before they pop out.
lastly, a bit of unofficial Ceramic nymph history. this kind of info with any kind of veracity isn’t easy to obtain but i can confirm their French origin. although relatively new to the global fly fishing world, i’ve known about them for about fifteen or so years.
frogs tend to not share their secrets… however, Stanislas, who ties these bugs commercially happily shares all his trade secrets for all to see, all in a very understandable english, big kudos for that. enjoy !
fly images via flyfishing.co.uk/Google images
when i was a bike messenger in D.C. that was our nickname for the F.D.A./Food and Drug Administration.
sometimes raising a few eyebrows and enquiries to the validity or exactitude of the drop off location when SnS had been absent-mindedly filled into the delivery signature manifest. said nick wasn’t exactly funny or super-clever but you know, work is work and it shouldn’t be taken too seriously, if at all.
some got it and some didn’t, just as one might expect from federal employees working/spending a third of their lives in a cubicle but enough of that, let’s get back to today’s goodies.
one’s liquid, the other ethereal. both are from people i’ve been following for years, watching their explorations and developement, each time opening a door that clears the air and blows away the cobwebs. bon appétit !
Snack is a visual treat from Susi Sie. she explores and finds the extraordinary in the ordinary and puts it on film without artifice or special effects. it’s delicious.
MaGziRe‘s Smack goes through the ears, bounces around all over the place and comes out who knows where. maybe it doesn’t come out at all…
Cheech @ Fly Fish Food– what can i say, the guy’s in a class of his own. enjoy !
it doesn’t have a name, it doesn’t have an author; its origins are unknown. it is however a mono-to-mono* knot for joining tippet to leader and/or in a leader makeup and it’s shown to us by Peter Morse.
i’ve been playing around with this knot at home since this video came out. its easy to tie and whether pulled under constant pressure or by hard yanks, it seems as strong as any other. it’s not the prettiest of knots but some don’t care about things like that. enjoy !
monofilament |ˈmɒnə(ʊ)fɪləm(ə)nt| (also monofil)
a single strand of man-made fibre.
• [mass noun] a type of fishing line using a monofilament.
notice how that doesn’t say anything about what that fibre might be made of: fluorocarbon, nylon or copolymer.
EDIT: Warren in the comment section informs us its called the J knot. the rest is still a mystery… 😆