Nymph Skin Detached Body

Nymph Skin from Virtual Nymph makes great looking detached bodies for flies. They are soft enough not to alert the fish that your imitation is not real, and very lifelike.

Select your hook and start your thread. You will need some kind of support for the body. I use Virtual Nymph’s Synthetic Quills, similar to Microfibberts but much larger. They can be used as tails on the finished fly if you like. Crimp the ends a little to provide a key in the smooth surface. You need to pull quite hard on them so they must be tied in securely. Tie them in to the top of the hook shank. If you are leaving them as tails you need to measure them carefully.

Take a length of Nymph Skin and tie it down over where you have tied in the quills.

Give the nymph skin a really good stretch and grip it along with the quills a couple of inches from the hook. Run the thread along the Nymph Skin and quills in open turns. When you get to point you want the body to end make several close turns. Then run the thread back to the hook in open turns. Once the thread is back on the hook  you can relax your grip on the nymph skin. Its fiddley but you can do it. A parachute tool (gallows tool) can help here.

For extra security a drop of Diamond Flex from Deer Creek can be added here. It secures the whole thing and doesn’t stiffen the body at all. Put a drop on and spread it all over the base of the detached body, before zapping it with your UV light.


Now comes the fun part. Hold the quills, stretch the Nymph Skin a little and wind it to form the body. Again a parachute tool helps. You can adjust the tension of the Nymph Skin to give the body the shape you want. The last couple of turns of the body will be on the hook.

Once you are happy with the body tie the nymph skin off to the hook.

Trim out all the excess materials, and you are ready to colour it as you like.

Once you have coloured it a thin coat of Diamond Flex finishes the job. How you choose to finish the fly is up to you. This body was the one used to make this sedge pattern above. I added antennae (The tips of the Synthetic quills I used as the support for the body), CdC in olive and black set in the thread for the thorax and a wing made from a large partridge feather coated in Diamond Flex.

Home Home Articles Loch Fishing River Fishing The Flies Tying 2014 Blog Fish With Us Products Custom Fly Tying Prints Links Tying Demos Pike and Predator

Nymph Skin and Synthetic Quills are available from Virtual Nymph. Phone Dale on +44 (0)7919208106

Diamond Flex, flexible, non tacky UV resin is available from Deer Creek