Tinsel Perdigon

The Tinsel Perdigon is a sweet little competition-style fly that is going mainstream. The idea behind this fly is to try and keep it as slim as possible with as much weight as you can squeeze onto the hook. This makes it essentially another weight but with a slim bug-like profile.

It’s great for quick currents and deep pools where getting down fast to fish that are holding on the bottom is essential. I love fishing this fly in the winter months when fish are stacked up at the deepest parts of the rivers. It does, however, find a way onto my line year-round as fish just seem to slam it all the time.

Step By Step Lime Green Version:

Firehole 315 size 18 hook with a 5/64 tungsten bead.

Start by sliding the bead onto the hook and placing it in the vise.

Next, Attach just a few wraps of lead wire.

Begin wrapping your tying thread creating a thread dam behind the lead wire. Work the thread over the top of the lead wire securing it down.

Add in the tail using CDL fibers measured about the length of the body. I like a bushy tail but keep that in balance with the bulk it adds to the fly’s body. Sometimes when tying this pattern I will even omit the tail to achieve the sleekest of profiles.

Tie in a single strand of Flashabou tinsel. Wrap the tinsel toward the bead making sure to cover all of the thread wraps. Capture it off and give it a whip finish. This variation is great in rivers that house a lot of Green Caddis and will sometimes also omit the tail for that reason.

Now, using a UV finish, cover the entire body of the fly with a very thin coat. I find the Solarez UV Thin Hard Formula works well. As does the Loon Thin or Fluorescing. Make sure to keep a nice smooth tapered body. Using a rotary vise really helps avoid building and curing lumps. Hit it quickly with a UV light when you are satisfied with the finish.

Time to raid the lady in your life’s cosmetics. My wife generously donated this black express finish nail polish. It works great for this pattern. I use a toothpick to gently dab just a bit on top creating a thorax illusion.

Once the nail polish is dry, I cover it with a little more of the same UV clear finish above and cure it quickly to add a bit of durability to the fly. I used to roll without doing this and found the nail polish liked to chip off easily while fishing. The UV finish cures well over top and holds up great!

Red Thread Variation


  • Hook: Tiemco Firehole 315 16-18
  • Weight: Lead Wire .010
  • Bead: Tungsten Bead Silver
  • Thread: Veevus 16/0 Fluorescent Orange
  • Tail: CDL Fibers
  • Body: Flashabou Lime Green
  • Backing: Black Nail Polish
  • UV Coating: Solarez Thin Formula

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