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The Slobster - by Dave Skok

Skok's Slobster

Dave Skok (pronounced "Skoke") is one of the modern heroes of saltwater fly tying. Dave has tied countless flies for East Coast and New England fly shops, and he has been one of Orvis' custom tiers - no small shakes for a commercial tier. Anglers have caught thousands of fish on his flies, and anyone who has cast one of Mystic Bay's molded poppers at a bluefish has probably fished with a Skok fly - as a teenager he tied thousands of tails on those poppers for Mystic Bay.

Recently, Dave was kind enough to send us one of his Lobster flies, which I've dubbed The "Slobster"! This impressionistic imitation seeks to mimic the appearance of a lobster in its natural environment. The fly is tied with materials which will animate the fly when it is fished in the surf of a rocky shoreline - natural hackles and fur move and "breathe" with life when this fly is placed in the water. Skok's lobster shows some of the influence of Bill Catherwood's style of tying, which focuses on the movement and appearance of the live creature rather than precise imitation. It's easy to picture some huge slob of a striper spotting this fly swimming among the boulders, and slurping it up without a second thought.

The Slobster also has a cool surprise - it's tied in two sections! Here's the deal: There is a "tube fly" section which forms the "tail" of the lobster...when the fly is tied on, the leader is threaded through this tube fly portion, then tied on to the hook which forms the backbone for the thorax/head/claws section of the fly. The two sections are then joined by slipping a soft section of tubing (which protrudes from the tail section) over the hook eye to keep the two sections together during fishing.

Dave Skok is always thinking about fish, fishing and fly design, and his insights into fish behavior are translated into effective design elements in his flies. We would like to offer our sincere thanks to Dave Skok for sending us this fly. - Chris Windram

Skok's Slobster

Skok's Slobster

Slobster - Pattern Recipe: (submitted by Dave Skok)

TOTAL LENGTH: approximately 10 Inches (24 cm).

HOOK: Tiemco 600SP #3/0 (or other large short-shank hook).
THREAD: Clear monofilament, fine.
FEELERS: Cream bucktail over which is slightly longer black bucktail.
CLAWS: Two yellowish feathers from a golden pheasant skin, outside of which are two dyed red grizzly saddle hackles, outside of which are two iridescent green feathers from a golden pheasant...all tied on the thick part of the stems, splayed.
EYES: Two large peacock glass beads burnt into place on 60# test monofilament, and coated with 5 minute epoxy.
INNERBELLY: One long shrimp pink and one long ginger variant saddle tied in by the butt and wrapped together to create a mottled effect, trimmed on top.
ROSTRUM: Blended black and pale orange Slinkyfibre (3/4 black, 1/4 orange), tapered and tied slightly longer than the eyes.
LEGS: Several turns of coyote zonker strip, trimmed on top and darkened with a black permanent marker.
CARAPACE: Blended black and pale orange Slinkyfibre, tapered and tied reverse-style.

TUBE: Hard Plastic, size 1 1/4 / soft plastic (to fit over hard plastic), long enough to join fly sections.
THREAD: Clear monofilament, fine.
EYES: Lead dumbbell, size medium - can be painted cream or pale pink if desired.
LEGS: Cream bucktail, tied long to hide the junction.
UNDERLEGS: Several turns of coyote zonker strip, trimmed on top and darkened with a black permanent marker, followed by several turns of cream polecat zonker strip (rabbit or mink may be substituted), trimmed on top and darkened with a black permanent marker.
DUBBING: Cream polecat fur around the lead eyes.
CARAPACE: Blended black and pale orange Slinkyfibre, tapered and tied reverse-style.

Saltwaterflies.com is proud to offer some of Dave Skok's patterns among our selection of fine saltwater flies.

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This page originally posted October, 2003

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