Designed by Harrison Steeves, III
Hook: Tiemco 2487, #8-12. This model hook works better than a standard wide gape dry fly hook for this pattern. The curvature of the hook allows plenty of room between the body and the hook point.
Thread: 6/0, color of choice
Body: Kreinik Foam Tying Disc 1/2" in color of choice, Kreinik Foam Tying Disc 1/4" in yellow or orange
Underbody: Kreinik Medium Braid in color to match 1/2" Disc
Legs: Use either fine or medium round rubber leg material in colors to either match or contrast with the body color, or use Kreinik 1/8" Ribbon in (#850) Mallard to form wings.
1.) Wrap the hook shank with thread back to a point just behind the eye of the hook. Tie in a piece of Kreinik Medium Braid. Wrap the braid to a point even with the bend of the hook, and then wrap forward to where you tied the braid in. Tie off, cut excess.
2.) Place 1/2" foam disc on top of the hook shank with the front of the disc extending just over the eye of the hook. About one quarter of the disc should be extending forward from the point at which the tying thread is positioned on the hook shank. The forward extending portion of the foam will thus form the head of the beetle. The remainder extending toward the rear, will form the body of the beetle.
3.) Fold the foam disc evenly over the hook shank and tie it down. At this point you should have a good head and body formed. Give it another ten or twelve tight wraps of thread so the body will not turn on the hook shank.
4.) Tie in the 1/4" disc at the same spot as the 1/2" disc. This disc serves as your ez viz indicator. A small amount of super glue can be applied to the underside of the finished fly if your fly bodies turn, but tight thread wraps are usually all that is necessary.
5.) Legs or wings can be tied in on the sides of the body and trimmed to appropriate length. I usually tie this beetle with wings no longer or just slightly longer than the body of the beetle. Once the legs or wings are tied in, whip finish and remove thread.
This pattern is a modification of the original Disc O’ Beetle featured in "Terrestrials 101" written by Harrison Steeves, III in the Winter 1996 issue of Fly Fish America. The Disc O’ Beetle is also available from Umpqua Feather Merchants.
Sinking Japanese Beetle
Designed by Harrison Steeves, III
Hook: #10 - Tiemco 3769, Orvis 1641, Mustad 3906
Thread: 6/0 Olive or Green
Body: Kreinik Heavy Braid; Mallard #850, Emerald #009HL
Wing Case: Copper colored Swiss Straw or rafia
Wing: Kreinik 1/8” Ribbon; Mallard #850
Head/Thorax: Kreinik Fine Braid; Chartreuse (Caddis Larva Green) #015
1. Wrap the rear half hook shank with thread.
2. Tie in Swiss Straw, use about a 4” piece. Tie in the Swiss Straw at the end of the hook, almost to the bend of the hook. Wrap thread forward to the middle of the hook shank.
3. Tie in two 9-10” strands of Kreinik Heavy Braid on each side of the hook shank. Tie them down by wrapping the thread backward to the same point at which the Swiss Straw exits the wraps. Wrap thread forward to about 1/16” behind the hook eye, half hitch (or whip finish) and cut thread.
4. Form the body of the beetle by using the overhand knot technique, passing the eye of the through the middle of the knot. Tie so that the 009HL strand form the back (top), and the 085 strands forms the belly (bottom). Use seven (7) knots to form the body on #10 hook. This will assure the proportions. When the body has been formed, tie down both body strands of material and cut. Note: When forming the knots, use PLENTY OF TENSION. If you don’t, the body looks really loose, and there won’t be enough room at the front of the hook to finish the fly.
5. Tie in the wing material, length extending back to the butt of the fly. Tie it in at the point where the body material cords were tied down and then wrap thread firmly toward, but not to the eye of the hook. Cut off the winging material piece extending forward and save for more wings. (use about a 6” piece - it’s easy tie in the correct length and then trim the forward portion. A 6 “ piece will tie a bunch of wings.)
6. Separate wing material into 2 equal halves and pull these laterally to the sides of the fly. I use a fine pair of tweezers for this, but a needle does fine.
7. Tie in about a 6” piece of Head/Thorax material - tie it in backwards to wing butts and on the side of the fly.
8. Fold Swiss Straw forward between wings to keep them separate, and tie down the Swiss Straw firmly from the wing butts almost to the hook eye. Trim to leave a small shelf of material pointing forward. Save the remainder of the Swiss Straw for more wing cases.
9. Wrap head/thorax material forward, 3-5 wraps depending upon how much space you have. After the last wrap, pull the material under the hook shank, tight into the eye of the hook and give it a couple of good thread wraps. Do not cut it.
10. At this point there is going to be some Swiss Straw visible, so tho finish the head neatly, first cock the fly at about a 45 degree angle in the vise. Bring the head/thorax material backward with the left hand and start building up the head with 6 wraps of thread. This will not only secure the head/ thorax material, but will give a neat head on the fly.