Showing posts with label Mercer's Missing Link. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mercer's Missing Link. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

More on Mercer's Missing Link From the Man Himself

Here's a link to a recent Fly Fisherman Magazine article by Mike Mercer on the Missing Link caddis as a follow up to my last post; thanks to an unknown reader.

LINK: Fly Fisherman Magazine / Fly-tying / Mercer's Missing Link 

I'm off to Montana, see you on the return.  Look for reports on my Instagram account - @mattgrobert

And sharpen your hooks!

Monday, July 23, 2018

Tips on Tying the Missing Link Caddis

I posted a couple of  photos recently on Instagram of Mercer's Missing Link Caddis and afterwards I got a bunch of emails and messages from folks that are having trouble tying it - specifically getting the hackle wrapped cleanly.  Here's how I do it and it works quite well - pardon my photography skills.

The trick here is to leave the wings - both the spent and the elk hair wing materials long until the hackle is completely wound and tied off.

Spent wings - wrap tight to a ball of dubbing to flare them.  

Elk Hair - Tie in on top of a nice even platform formed when tying in the spent wings.

Hackle - Tie in in front of the elk hair butts and wrap counter-clockwise looking from above for a right handed tyer, and tie off behind the hook eye.  The longer wing materials will allow you to wrap the hackle over the spent wings and around the base of the elk hair wing and butts without catching it. Make the spent wings about 2X the hook shank length, and cut the elk hair right at the skin so you have plenty of length.    

The finished fly from angle above.

Side view.

And here's the video we did with Tim Flagler on tying it from start to finish. 

Hope that helps!

We're headed to Montana in a couple of days, so we hope to have some posts from Big Sky country when we return since the computer is staying home.  We'll try to post stuff from the trip daily to Instagram though - @mattgrobert 

Sharpen your hooks.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Tying Mercer's Missing Link Caddis

I've been fishing the Missing Link Caddis for several years now, and it has won a spot in my mostly sparse fly boxes - I carry hatch matching patterns specific to where I am fishing and the time of year, and I carry a few general patterns such as this one.  The more I use it, the more I like it, because it produces well.  And after losing a bet to Doug this past winter, I tied him a bunch of these on comp hooks, and he loves the fly, too, because it works (and because it looks cool).  It looks like it is hard to tie, but it really isn't, the trick is to tie up 6 or more at a time so you can develop a rhythm and feel for how to handle each of the materials. The other key to this fly, and most other patterns that incorporate body hair, is to use the best quality hair available.  Thanks to Tim Flagler for another great job with the video production!


Hook: TMC100 #14
Thread: 6/0 Olive Danville
Body: Tying thread
Rib: Pearl Krystal Flash
Thorax: Peacock flash dubbing
Spent Wings: Midge grey zelon
Upright wing: Bleached elk body hair
Hackle: Light cree

I tied it here in olive, but you can also use tan, black, yellow or even red thread.  For hackle, the original was tied with dun hackle.  I should also mention that this pattern is also used successfully during mayfly hatches - just tie it in appropriate colors and sizes to match the natural. 

For some background on this pattern straight from the designer, click on this link from our friends at FrankenFly: Mike Mercer on the creation of the Missing Link 

Tie some up; they work...and they do look cool.

Sharpen your hooks.