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Bucktail Deceiver (SBS)
Bucktail Deceiver (SBS)
Published by peregrines
Default Bucktail Deceiver (SBS)

Bucktail Deceiver (SBS)
Bucktail Deceiver......Top- a blinged out version using blended colors of bucktail and stick on prismatic eyes (described in this step by step) and a simpler blind version (without eyes) just using white bucktail, a bit of flash and a peacock topping Click the image to open in full size.
Type of fly saltwater streamer or bucktail
Originator of pattern if known a variation of the classic Lefty's Deceiver originated by Bernard "Lefty" Kreh
Tied and Submitted by peregrines
Level of tying experience needed to tie this pattern Beginner, a fairly simple pattern using basic tying skills, and a "must learn" if you fish saltwater! Another pattern in our up coming series of Beginner Saltwater Fly Tying lessons
Materials listed in order of tie in:
Hook Standard Saltwater hook of your choice, Mustad 34007 size 2/0 here
Thread Your choice, a strong thread is helpful. Gray Danville's Flat Waxed Nylon is used here
Tail In the Bucktail Deceiver, a tail of bucktail replaces the hackle tail of the Lefty's Deceiver. A few strands of Flashabou or Krystal flash can also be added along sides. A tail of mixed strands from different colored bucktails (chartreuse light blue and yellow) is used in the step by step below to demonstrate the effect of blending colors (rather than layering colors) but feel free to use whatever you want. A couple of strands are Holographic Flashabou are tied along each side to extend well beyond the bucktail to give added flash.
Body A body of flat body braid type material, chenille etc. In this example Silver Mylar tubing is used to demonstrate how to use it to construct a body.
Collar A 360 degree collar of bucktail is applied around the shank, color of your choice. This example uses another bunch of blended colors from several bucktails (white, pink, yellow, tan, orange) for the belly and sides
Throat optional, can be a short tuft of marabou or fluff from the base of a feather, rabbbit, calftail, or hackle fibers. Short strands of Red Krystal Flash. used here. A few strands of pearl Krystal Flash are tied along each side
Wing A wing of a contrasting, (usually darker) color is often tied in, slightly to the front of the collar. In this example, another layer of blended colors of bucktail (dark blue, olive, gray, red, purple, brown) is used tied in over a few strands of root beer colored Krystal Flash
Topping Optional, in this example several strands of peacock herl are used
Lateral Line Optional, in this example it is omitted, but a strand of Silver Salt Water Flashabou added along the side of each wing makes a great lateral line. (SW Flashabou is thicker than regular Flashabou)
Head Thread head covered in a couple coats of head cement Sally Hansen's Hard As Nails used here.
Eyes Optional, but they add a nice finished look. Stick-on prismatic eyes here. Cover thread wraps with at least one coat of head cement and let dry first. Then apply eyes and cover with one or more coats of head cement.
Special tying notes The step by step should help explain the sequence of tying, but try and keep the overall fly sparse by working with bunches of bucktail that when twisted a 1/4 turn in opposite directions between both hands is about 1/2 the diameter of a wooden kitchen match. You'll end up with a fly that's easier to cast, has better action in the water, is more realistic looking and more durable (the hair will be less likely to fall out) than if you tied the same fly with thicker bunches of bucktail). You should be able to see through the fly after it is complete.
Note on materials If you'll be tying large saltwater flies, look for "Saltwater" or "Jumbo" size bucktails-- these are generally fuller and larger in size with longer hair and run just a bit more than regualr bucktails.
If you want to try blending colors by mixing individual strands from different bucktails, a plastic tray box with long compartments is handy for blending bucktail colors. From right, colors for the tail (yellow, light blue and chartreuse) and sides (white, pink, yellow, tan, and orange) and back (olive, dark blue, light blue, red, brown, gray and purple). I usually make up a bunch and work out of it to tie several flies at a time rather than handling a bunch of bucktails for every fly. Remember to keep the tips on one end and and butts of the bucktail at the other end of the mixed bunches as you blend and mix them with your fingers by pulling hairs out and realigning them with the bunch so the individual strands are well mixed to get a blend of differnt colors Click the image to open in full size.
Tie on thread above point of hook and work back on shank directly above barb for the attachment of the tail. Tie on a bunch of bucktail for the tail about 1/2 the diameter of a kitchen match on top of shank. It should extend rearward 2 hook lengths from the end of the hook. Leave the butts long for now. Click the image to open in full size.
Bind down butts with layer of thread to form smooth under body up the shank to approximately 2 eye lengths behind eye. Trim butts and form smooth thread layer over butts. This is very important especially if you're using Mylar Tubing for the body as we are in this example because the butt ends of any bucktail that stick up could get caught in the weave of mylar fibers and cause the tube to unravel when we slide it on. Click the image to open in full size.
Bind in several strands of flashabou by the middle on top of shank. One half should extend well beyond the tail, the other should extend forward over front of hook. Fold flash rearward and bind down. Leave thread hanging from rear of shank Click the image to open in full size.
Measure a length of mylar tubing from rear of shank to just even with front of eye and cut. Click the image to open in full size.
Remove cotton wadding by poking with your bodkin-- you can see it sticking out in front in this picture Click the image to open in full size.
With the thread hanging at rear of shank, slide mylar tubing over the eye and down hook shank. Click the image to open in full size.
Bind down at rear of shank over portion of mylar tubing that hasn't unravelled with several tight turns of thread. Whip finish here and cut thread-- if you have difficulty whip finishing this far back on hook, you can cheat by applying a drop of CA glue (Zap-A-Gap or Superglue) directly to these thread wraps. To set it up the glue instantly you can spritz it with an accelerant like Zip Kicker Click the image to open in full size.
Tie on again about one hook eye length back from the eye. Either trim or fold the butt ends of the unravelled mylar tubing rearward and tie down Click the image to open in full size.
Flip the jaws or remove and invert the hook so it rides hook point up to tie on the bucktail for the collar belly and sides. Select a bunch of bucktail for the belly and sides about 1/2 the diameter of a wooden kitchen match. Measure the length of the bucktail to extend from the tie in point to roughly the first 1/3 of the tail Click the image to open in full size.
Mush down on the bucktail at the tie in point to distribute the bucktail evenly around the bottom of the hook shank and up the sides, it should cover roughly 180 degrees Click the image to open in full size.
Flip the jaws or reinsert the hook so it rides in the normal position (hook point down) to tie on the sides of the collar. Again select a bunch of bucktail the same way we did for the belly and sides, mush it down around the shank so it covers top and sides. We have now made a 360 degree collar consisting of a relatively sparse layer of bucktail. Trim butts and tie in a couple strands of flash along the sides if desired Click the image to open in full size.
Invert hook and tie in material for throat if desired-- red Krystal Flash here Click the image to open in full size.
Flip hook again so it's right side up ( hook point down). Select another bunch of bucktail for the back of the baitfish, and tie it in on top of the shank, slightly forward of the bucktail collar Click the image to open in full size.
Tie in several strands (6-8) of peacock herl on top of shank directly in front of last batch of bucktail. Trim butts of peacock herl and cover with thread wraps to make a nice head and tie off. We're done with the tying at this point, but we're going to add prismatic stick on eyes. Click the image to open in full size.
After the head has been covered with a layer of head cement and it has had time to dry. To attach a flat decal to the cheeks of the thread head and get a smooth transition without gaps between the edges of the decal and the layers of thread head, use the point of your bodkin to form a slight crease down the middle of the decal Click the image to open in full size.
Attach the eyes with Zap-A-Gap, Super Glue, Epoxy or a light cure resin and coat the thread with another layer of head cement. epoxy of light cured resin Click the image to open in full size.
Note the sparseness of the bucktail- you can clearly see through the fly Click the image to open in full size.
The fly just off the vise may look a bit scraggly, especially if the strands of the peacock herl topping are flying off in all directions. But running it under a hot water faucet will help streamline it and the fly will dry with everything in decent shape Click the image to open in full size.
Experiment! Vary colors and sizes to match baitfish. "Attractor" color combinations are also very effective.
Target species striped bass, red fish, tarpon, snook, bluefish, etc
Fishing notes This pattern is a "must have" in everyone's saltwater box, and can be used to imitate freshwater baitfish including alewife and shad, white fish, cisco etc
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