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JC’s Electric Caddis Larva Pattern & Tying Instructions

Fly Tying Recipe: JC’s Electric Caddis Larva
Scud hook (here, an Daiichi 1120), sizes 14-16
Fluorescent green, 8/0 or 70-denier
Fluorescent green Antron yarn
Chartreuse Ultra Wire, size small, and Chartreuse Stretch Tubing, size micro
Fluorescent green Antron yarn
Brown ostrich herl
Thorax color:
Brown permanent marker.
UV-cure resin.
Lighter, dental pick
Show / Hide JC’s Electric Caddis Larva Transcript

Video Transcript:

This is fellow New Jersey tier and Regal Pro Staff member John Collins’ Electric Caddis Larva. Although it fishes well year round, it’s particularly effective during the winter months when trout have been known to gorge themselves on the naturals it imitates.

John starts with a Daiichi #1120 scud hook in size 14. After getting the hook firmly secured in the jaws of his tying vise, he loads a bobbin with a spool of fluorescent green UTC 70 Denier thread. Start your thread on the hook shank leaving some space behind the eye and take wraps rearward to about the hook point before snipping or breaking off the tag.

For the abbreviated tail, and to add some taper to the body of the fly, John snips an inch-long segment of fluorescent green Antron yarn free from the spool. Place the midpoint of the segment on top of the hook and start taking wraps of tying thread to secure it to the top of the shank, well down into the bend. Then, take wraps of tying thread all the way back to the 1/3 point on the hook shank and pull the Antron back. Make thread wraps rearward to bind the Antron down. Use your tying scissors to snip the Antron off at an angle so it extends to about the 2/3’s point on the shank. This is a great little trick for producing a nicely tapered underbody on the fly.

For the outer body, small-sized chartreuse ultra wire and chartreuse stretch tubing are used together. 12” of each will make numerous flies. Feeding the thin wire into the tubing can be a challenge but take your time and focus more on twisting the tube around and over top of the wire instead of trying to shove the wire through. Leave a small amount of the wire extending from the tube end. Bind that little bit of wire to the top of the hook shank behind the eye and start taking thread wraps over top of the tubing as well. Continue wrapping to bind the tubing and the wire to top of the hook shank, all the way down to the base of the tail. Follow this with wraps forward to fill in any low spots and completely coat the underbody with chartreuse thread. End at the front edge of the underbody and do a 1 or 2 turn whip finish to effectively save your work up to this point.

Get hold of the tubing and wire, and start making touching wraps with it up the hook shank, the initial one’s always the most difficult. The first few wraps should be made under a good bit of tension but start relaxing that tension as you work your way forward. This too will add to the taper of the body. Continue taking wraps all the way up to the end of the underbody then secure the tubing and wire there with a few tight wraps of tying thread. Once secured, snip the excess material off close and put it safely aside for the next fly. Mash the end of the tubing and wire down and take thread wraps to secure it all the way up to the hook eye. Then relocate your tying thread rearward to the start of the abdomen.

Brown ostrich herl is used to form the thorax and legs of the fly. A single herl is all you need. Secure the butt end with the stem side pointing away from you to the top of the hook shank and take thread wraps to bind it down up to the hook eye. Begin making wraps with the herl while trying your best to keep the stem pointing forward. Wrapping this way helps to prevent matting the fibers of the previous wrap. Just behind the hook eye use your tying thread to secure the ostrich herl. Pull the herl back to double it over, take a few more wraps then snip or break the excess off close. With the ostrich looking good, do a 4 or 5 turn whip finish, seat the knot well and snip or cut your tying thread free. Now’s the time to snip the Antron off to form a stubby little tail.

Pick up a lighter from your favorite band and use it to singe the ostrich herl just on the back of the fly. A small dental pick does a masterful job of cleaning up the burnt ends on the ostrich fibers – while a brown permanent marker will nicely color up the back of the thorax. Finally, a small drop of low-viscosity UV cure resin is applied to the top of the thorax to add a little bulk, some shine and to increase durability. Once you’ve given the resin an ample shot of UV light, your JC’s Electric Caddis Larva is ready to fish.

Simply by changing the hook and altering the size and color of materials, you can produce variations of this pattern to imitate a wide range of caddis species in their larval state.