Foam Ant - step-by-step

 About me
 On the bench
 Fly Swaps
 Friends Flies

 Emerging Buzzer  Step-by-step index  Foam Beetle

A step at a time:


PDF print version

Foam Ant

Hook: Dry fly, #14-18
Thread: Gudebrod 8/0, black
Body: 2mm fly-tying foam, black
Indicator: Poly yarn, orange
Hackle: Rooster, black


(Full-size pictures on click.)

Step 1
Foam Ant - Step 1

Mount a hook in the vise.


Step 2
Foam Ant - Step 2

Tie in the thread and wrap it back to the hook bend.


Step 3
Foam Ant - Step 3

Cut a strip of foam, about 4mm wide. Cut the corners to make it easier to tie in. Also cut a little bit diagonally from the top (clearer on the next picture)


Step 4
Foam Ant - Step 4

From the side. Note that it hasn't been cut to a sharp point.


Step 5
Foam Ant - Step 5

Tie in the foam on the hook and cover the trimmed part with thread.


Step 6
Foam Ant - Step 6

Fold the strip over itself so that a little bit still points backwards and lay it down on the hook shank. Do not stretch or squeeze it.


Step 7
Foam Ant - Step 7

Tie it down with a couple of firm thread wraps. The foam collapses and you might have to be a little bit violent to be able to cut it close to the thread. Pull it forward/upwards, stretching it out and force the scissors in under it. Cut and cover the remaining waste with thread.


Step 8
Foam Ant - Step 8

Cut another foam strip, same width as last one or slightly narrower and prepare the end in the same way.


Step 9
Foam Ant - Step 9

Tie it in the same way as the last one, but this time with the strip pointing in the other direction. The whip-finish will not be made by the hook eye this time, but still save a couple of millimetres to the hook eye.


Step 10
Foam Ant - Step 10

Another "the same way". Fold the foam a little over itself so a little bit still point toward the hook eye. This is why we still saved some space inbetween... to be able to easily find the hook eye when standing by the water.


Step 11
Foam Ant - Step 11

Tie it down to the same size as the rear one (or slightly smaller)


Step 12
Foam Ant - Step 12

Cut the waste and cover the remains with thread. Now we have created a nice waist between the two body parts. Already now, without hackle, it will have an exceptional boyancy and make a nice silhouette to the fish.


Step 13
Foam Ant - Step 13

It's more doubtful that the fisherman will see it though, so we will use a piece of brightly colored yarn as help (poly, antron or similar). Tie it in immediately against the abdomen, so it will stand up with support from the foam.


Step 14
Foam Ant - Step 14

Tie in a hackle feather in front of the yarn.


Step 15
Foam Ant - Step 15

Wrap the hackle 3-4 turns around the waist and, instead of doing it in touching turns like on a standard collar hackle, do it the kind of "criss-cross" way. It will spread them out some. Tie it down behind the foam and cut the waste. Make a whip-finish at the same place, trim the yarn to desired height and cement the exposed thread under the fly. You can of course cover the shank with dubbing while tying this fly, but it won't make a difference to the silhouette. Better is to get the thread and the critical points cemented.



Very easy and quick tie. Extremely boyant and very durable. A lot of qualities defining a good dry fly.

Top view...
Top view...

Tasty silhouette...



Copyright 2008-2015 © SwedneckFlyFishing