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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've continued to tinker with my Purely Functional Skater design that I have been using for the past couple years (my friends have dubbed it Little Wang) . I decided that I needed a skater with the popular black/blue color scheme and the fly in the pics is what I have come up with. Some BC steelhead recently gave the fly the nod.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That is sweet! May I copy?
Of course!

Recipe:

Mustad 9671 equivalent (2xl streamer hook like TMC 5262, Mustad signature R73), I use mostly 4's and 6's

tail - moose with blue holographic flashabou, about 8 strands.

butt - pink floss, single strand

body - black floss, two strands

rib - Lagartun fine silver

shellback/lip - 2mm black or pink foam

flash ball - cactus chenielle, minnow blue, large, 2-3wraps

Wing flash - blue holgraphic flashabou, 8 strands, cross wrap in front of flash ball.

wings - black cow elk tied in centered around the hook, trim bottom.

visibility posts - rear -white foam,wide; black foam: narrow, facing forward.

White 70 Denier for rear half of fly to help floss butt glow

Black 150 Denier gelspun for front half, to be able to crank down on the elk.

Note: don't spin the elk, but flare it, in place in front of the "flash ball". Trim butt ends short and trim the bottom flat. I helps to hold the tips down while trimming the ends down. Part the hair in the middle on top and pull the foam lip/shellback over and tie down in front.

I will put a SBS together someday...........

Have fun guys!

(I just started tying a purple/black skater with the corresponding materials and like it too, will post in the future)

Be Blessed this fall with some great surface fishing,

Todd
 

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Todd that is awesome my brother !! Great stuff .
I just finished reading your latest blog post while waiting for my plane to arrive . Cool stuff !!
Too bad about that hook . Chalk up another fish lost to an AJ .
I promise the next flies will be on Partrigde or Gaelics .


Mike
 

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I can attest to the effectiveness of the Black and Blue Little Wang. Not only does that fly stay afloat and fish all kinds of water (from fast flows to near frog water), not only is it the most visible surface fly that I have ever tried thus far, but the steelhead just get angry at that little fly! I witnessed some vicious takes that would make me shake in my wading boots.

Mike, it was fun reading and seeing your Undertaker fool a fish for Todd. Keep those winches hot, brotha!

Adrian
 

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That's a pig, Todd. You dog! I want one of those!

Hey guys, I have spent lots (and lots) of time watching Todd probe water with his skaters. We recently fished the NU together and he stuck an acrobatic fish in the Gorge water with one. I fish them myself, from time to time. They skate like Sonja Henie (some of you guys will have to look that one up) and chug like a frat boy, if you like to pop/chug them, which a lot of us do.

And they whack fish with consistency.

The "Little Wang" name comes because the foam post stand amazingly "at attention" and make it really easy to track the fly in all conditions. I don't remember who dubbed it that, Adrian perhaps, but "Little Wang" seems a bit less risque than "Todd's Wanger," don't you think? :hihi:

It is a terrific pattern developed by a terrific guy.

The pattern is the more terrific of the two, however.:)

Keith
 

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:hihi: Comedy, Keith! But I think it was the steelhead guide, Jeff Hickman, that first made the remark about that..."post". Fair game from then on....as the sign on the main stem Umpqua stated:



Cheers!
 

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I'd be curious to see a photo of the wake. Interesting bug
Brent, here's a shot of the wake in the dusk. Our buddy, Steve, has a better shot from an osprey's viewpoint but he's on another steelhead trip at this time. The Little Wang actually gives off two wakes: The obvious foam lip pushing water, but also the moose tail stirs up a secondary wake gettin' those players hot & bothered. Just add water.



Adrian
 

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WHOA! Very nice fish Todd!

I am just itching to put the "lil' wangs" you gifted me in the water.... and that time is fast approaching! Looks like you guys just had a killer time on the river!

Cheers.
J.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Guys:
Thanks for your comments and kind words. I always enjoy the shared excitement over surface steelheading. The surface grab, for me, is the ultimate experience in all of steelheading. It is what I live for and is what I daydream about often. I am also happy when I see "converts" entering the realm of surface steelhead maddness - I think our recent trip to BC fully converted Adrian and our buddy Steve Turner to the dark side. Adrian, poor guy, ties all those incredibly beautiful classic Atlantic Salmon flies in hand, but now has the dilemma of choosing to fish said flies while yearning for the surface take. Luckily, I'm content with my less refined flies tied with rare, select, endangered foam sheets!

Keith,
You've gotten plenty hogs, I've been there with you multiple times when it has happened! That larger fish in the photos taped at 33", probably the largest steelhead I've gotten on a surface bug. I maintain that I am more than content with getting steelhead that size and smaller on top - steelhead that are active to the surface and won't tow me a mile downriver. I wouldn't complain if someday a "Kahuna" (20lb+ steelhead) grabbed my skater, but I don't really yearn for fish that size.

Mike,
No worries about the bent hook on the Undertaker, it made for a good story! I'm just glad to have gotten the hookup. Now I can straighten that hook and put it back to work.

James,
Hope those wangs do some good for you up north!! Will watch for a good report. Thanks again for trusting me with the 8592 Proto last winter and it was great to visit you and see your shop.

Blessings to all of you,

Todd
 

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The surface grab, for me, is the ultimate experience in all of steelheading. It is what I live for and is what I daydream about often.
Would have to agree, there is nothing like working a fly across the surface and seeing the take. Looks like your fly has proven its value. Thanks for the motivation.
 

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Todd,

Great post! Keep them coming. I'm living vicariously through you and the other steelie skaters on the board.

I have not hooked a steelie on top since March. Water has been pretty scarce down here.....but it's raining today!

Would love to see a SBS for the "Lil' Wang". Really like the name too!

Cheers,
Joe
 

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The surface grab, for me, is the ultimate experience in all of steelheading. It is what I live for and is what I daydream about often. I am also happy when I see "converts" entering the realm of surface steelhead maddness
I only recently had the joy (ok, ecstasy!) of catching a steelhead on a skater, and I would have to agree with you whole heartedly. I'd committed some time to really fishing one on the North Umpqua this last trip, and after that one fish, skating flies was all I wanted to do.

For me it was more than just the explosion on the surface, I find the whole experience of watching the fly squirm along to be mesmerizing to a whole other level. It feels much more involved, being able to see the affects of the various currents pull at the line and how the fly responds. I love the feel of swinging a fly through a run too, but skating takes it much further for me.

Very cool little skater there too, I will probably copy that one myself. Gorgeous steelhead!
JB
 

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Brent, here's a shot of the wake in the dusk. Our buddy, Steve, has a better shot from an osprey's viewpoint but he's on another steelhead trip at this time. The Little Wang actually gives off two wakes: The obvious foam lip pushing water, but also the moose tail stirs up a secondary wake gettin' those players hot & bothered. Just add water

Adrian
Didn't think I'd actually get a photo! Thanks Adrian. I was thinking that lower black foam lip was going to drown the bug, or make it spin.

Headed to BC on Sunday, sadly I'm in a hotel away from home so can't tie any for myself...
 
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