Extended Body Mayfly Duns

These extended body mayfly patterns are what I refer to as the “BXB” Extended Body Series. “BXB” is an acronym for Bastian Extended Body. The Slate Drake pattern was created about eight or nine years ago; the Coffin Fly, likewise, and in there somewhere I also tied a few Green Drakes and March Browns with extended bodies. The early Green Drake prototype had a dubbed body over closed-cell foam, but back then one could not get cream colored foam, so I “improvised.” The Floating Inchworm pattern body is made the same way. These bodies are made on a pin mandrel; from closed-cell foam of different colors. Last weekend at the Lancaster Fly Fishing Show, I upgraded through the kindness of my friend, Jim Kennedy, who saw a tube fly tool and thought I could adapt it to my method of tying extended foam bodies. Indeed, Jim was right, since I was tying on a pin, I had to remove the pin from the vise with each body to slide it off, because I was using a pin with a head on it. Now the tube fly tool makes it easy; I simply make the body and slide it off, ready for the next one. Thanks Jim!

These flies are effective on the water, and excel as fishing patterns. Last June, my neighbor Jim Latini and I made ten evening fishing trips to Lycoming Creek, just over the hill a few minutes away. We fished the Slate Drake Thorax Dun pattern predominantly, since it was their season. See also:  https://donbastianwetflies.wordpress.com/2012/06/15/last-nights-fishing/

There are photos there of trout caught on the Slate Drake BXB Thorax Dun. These patterns excel as fishing flies for several reasons: The short shank hook makes the fly lighter in weight, therefore they present on the water more delicately, and also drift and act more like a natural mayfly. Hooking capability with this design is not impeded, but in fact enhanced. This is because trout can take the fly easier with the smaller hook, resulting in fewer missed strikes than are normally encountered with standard hooks. The extended abdomen is flexible, not stiff as on some other extended body patterns. The design is more realistic than standard dressings, and each pattern style – Thorax Dun, Parachute, Comparadun, Hackled Comparadun, and Spinner – always land right side up every time.

BXB Slate Drake Thorax Dun

BXB Slate Drake Thorax Dun, Don Bastian original pattern.

BXB Slate Drake Thorax Dun

Hook: Tiemco 2488 Up-eye scud hook, size #14

Thread: Danville 6/0 Flymaster #47 Brown

Abdomen: Brown closed-cell foam

Tails: Moose body hair

Wing: A post of Dun colored Enrico’s Sea Fibers, aka Beck’s Poly Fluff (1990’s), or Hi-Vis. (Same product).

Thorax: Rusty Dun rabbit dubbing

Hackle: Sandy dun, clipped on the bottom half way between hook point and shank.

This pattern, plus a Spinner, Comparadun, Hackled Comparadun, and Parachute are available individually or as a set of five patterns on MyFlies.com: http://www.myflies.com/BXB-Slate-Drake-Set-P741.aspx

BXB March Brown Thorax Dun

BXB March Brown Thorax Dun, #14 hook, size ten fly.

BXB March Brown Thorax Dun

Hook: TMC 2488 straight eye scud hook, #14

Thread: Danville 6/0 Flymaster #47 Brown

Abdomen: Tan closed-cell foam

Tails: Moose body hair

Thorax: Tan rabbit dubbing

Hackle: Brown dyed grizzly and grizzly

Wing: Light tan Enrico’s Sea Fibers, or Poly Fluff, or Hi-Vis; same product different names.

Soon to be available on MyFlies.com.

These extended bodies take me between 00:01:20 to 00:01:40 to make; the rest of the fly is made in under two minutes, so these are extended body patterns you can crank out in under four minutes, once the tying procedure is learned. I apologize that it’s dang near impossible to do a step-by-step for the extended abdomen that would be feasible. This will be another reason for me to do a video tying segment.

BXB Green Drake Hairwing Thorax Dun

BXB Green Drake Hairwing Thorax Dun. I know, the Green Drake dun has three tails, but that third tail that should be in the middle is almost impossible to attach; besides I’m counting on the trout not to count.

BXB Green Drake Hairwing Thorax Dun

Hook: TMC 2488 straight eye scud hook, #12

Thread: Danville 6/0 Flymaster tan for abdomen, yellow for thorax and head

Abdomen: Cream closed-cell foam, olive Pantone marker over the top of abdomen. Use the marker before making the body, otherwise the ink bleeds into the thread and discolors the ribbing.

Tail: Yellow-dyed gray mallard fibers

Thorax: Pale olive rabbit dubbing

Wing: Yellow-dyed deer hair

Hackle: Olive green-dyed grizzly and ginger

BXB Green Drake - Coffin Fly Spinner

BXB Green Drake – Coffin Fly Spinner

BXB Green Drake Coffin Fly Spinner

Hook: TMC 2488 straight eye scud hook, #12

Thread: Danville 6/0 Flymaster Tan for abdomen, Black for thorax

Tails: Moose body hair

Wing: Clear Enrico’s Sea Fibers with two strands of pearlescent Krystalflash

Thorax: Black rabbit dubbing

BXB Yellow Drake

BXB Yellow Drake

BXB Yellow Drake Parachute

Hook: TMC 2488 straight eye scud hook, #12

Thread: Danville #47 Brown for abdomen, Yellow for thorax

Abdomen: Cream closed-cell foam

Tail: Yellow dyed deer hair

Wing: Bleached deer hair, later versions used tan Enrico’s Sea Fibers

Hackle: Ginger

Abdomen: Cream rabbit dubbing

These Yellow Drake patterns were tied on the spot at Wantastiquet Lake Trout Club in Vermont last June. I arrived for the trip of a few days and the Yellow Drakes were hatching. It’s an evening hatch and I got there early afternoon, so I sat on the porch of the cabin and cranked out a dozen of these for five anglers to use that evening. They worked like a charm! See also: https://donbastianwetflies.wordpress.com/2012/06/27/the-view-not-the-one-with-whoopi-etc/

Floating Inchworm Pattern

Floating Inchworm Pattern, size #16 TMC 2488 hook.

The Floating Inchworm was developed last June. During a few of the evening trips that Jim and I took to Lycoming Creek, we successfully tested this Floating Inchworm pattern.

I hope you enjoy these patterns. The Floating Inchworm is available on MyFlies.com; the March Brown, Green Drake, and Coffin Fly Spinner will soon be available there as well.

9 comments on “Extended Body Mayfly Duns

  1. Steve Sawczuk says:

    Hi Don, I’ll vouch for the effectiveness of your extended body flies. I’m looking forward to using them this coming season. Last June, the fish took them without hesitation during the yellow drakes. Of all the flies we’ve used at the lake for this particular hatch, from my personal experience, these seem to be the ticket. They also look great.

    • Don Bastian says:

      Hi Steve;
      Thanks so much for your vote of confidence and personal validation of this pattern style! I really appreciate it! We did indeed find out how well they worked…what great fishing we had with them on the Lake! I’m really happy that this pattern is your personal preference to “work the best.” I too, am looking forward to the Yellow Drake hatch on Wantastiquet Lake. Thanks again for your endorsement of the pattern, and thank you for your comment!

  2. Alec S. says:

    Wow, Don – those are really great. Extended bodies tied so quickly would make any fly tier smile!! They sure look super; I hope they will be on next DVD!

    • Don Bastian says:

      Hi Alec;
      Thanks for your comment and endorsement of these patterns! It is pretty amazing how easy, and quick, they are to make, once you get the hang of the procedure. I know there are other extended body patterns out there, using other materials and tying methods, but these, to my knowledge, are the fastest to tie, and quite likely excel over the others in performance (hooking percentage) due to the soft body of the foam that does not prevent a secure hookup with the trout most of the time. Thanks again for your comment!

  3. joel stansbury says:

    Don, I fished Central and Eastern Pa. for years and I always said the fish were “Edicated”. Some of them must have had PH’D’s! If these don’t fool ’em, nothing will! Apparently Steve has been successful with them, so Congrats on fooling the wiley old geezers that dwell in the depths of Pa. Waters.

    • Don Bastian says:

      Hi Joel;
      Some of the trout here may seem to be educated…but you can catch them off guard with the right patterns and presentations. The Slate Drake pattern has been tested here for about eight years…I mostly tied it in the Thorax Dun and Spinner. Both have performed very well. Last June – see the archived post here – Last Night’s Fishing, – my neighbor and I made ten trips over the hill to nearby Lycoming Creek. Each evening we used my BXB Slate Drake patterns, and hooked anywhere from six to more than twenty trout each. Not bad for an evening of casting about with drys…the Slate Drakes, aka isonychias, were still lingering about, and the trout were used to seeing them. Thanks for your comment!
      Hey, you need to return to Pennsylvania one day for more trout fishing. Invitation open for whenever you can get here!

  4. […] Bastian posted some nice extended body mayfly duns. This one is his original BXB Slate Drake Thorax […]

  5. Larry says:

    Hi Don,
    Great looking flies. Thanks for posting. Makes me want to get home and warm up the vice.

  6. Don Bastian says:

    Hi Larry;
    Thanks for your comment and compliments on this rather old article, I’m glad you enjoyed it! I am kinda of partial to this design for large mayflies… 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s