Marabou Muddler - step-by-step

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Marabou Muddler

Hook: Streamer or Long Nymph, #6-12
Thread: 8/0, black - GSP for head
Tail: Marabou tips, red
Body: Mylar tinsel, silver
Ribbing: French tinsel, silver
Wing: Marabou, yellow + 2 peacock herls on each side
Head/collar: Deer hair, spun


(Full-size pictures on click.)

Step 1
Marabou Muddler - Step 1

Mount a hook in the vise and cover the rear 2/3 of the shank with thread. Leave the head part bare.


Step 2
Marabou Muddler - Step 2

Tie in a few marabou tips for tail and tie down the surplus along the body part of the fly.


Step 3
Marabou Muddler - Step 3

Tie in a piece of french tinsel along the side of the hook.


Step 4
Marabou Muddler - Step 4

Wrap the thread back up to the start of the body.


Step 5
Marabou Muddler - Step 5

Tie in a piece of silver mylar tinsel.


Step 6
Marabou Muddler - Step 6

Wrap the mylar tinsel backwards over the body. Turn around at the tail and wrap it back up again. Secure it and cut the waste.


Step 7
Marabou Muddler - Step 7

Spiral wrap the french tinsel over the body and tie off.


Step 8
Marabou Muddler - Step 8

Tie in a generous bunch of marabou for wing.


Step 9
Marabou Muddler - Step 9

Add four peacock herls to the wing, two on each side.


Step 10
Marabou Muddler - Step 10
This is optional, but a way I prefer. Here I have tied off the regular tying thread and tied in a GSP thread instead. This is superb for deer hair work. The hook will break long before the thread.


Step 11
Marabou Muddler - Step 11

1: Prepare a bunch of deer hair and find your tie-in point.
2: Switch hand and cut down the other side a little bit. This makes it easier to control.
3: Lay a couple of loose wraps around the hook and the hair and then tighten the thread.
4: Let go of the bunch and allow the hairs to spin around the hook


Step 12
Marabou Muddler - Step 12

Pack the bunch backwards with your fingers or a hair packer.


Step 13
Marabou Muddler - Step 13

Make a few wraps immediately in front of the hairs to make them stay back there. First bunch in place...


Step 14
Marabou Muddler - Step 14

Here I've just laid a couple of loose wraps around the second bunch and the hook.


Step 15
Marabou Muddler - Step 15

Tighten, let it spin and pack it backwards against the first. This time a hair packer is used though. Personal preference, but at least to me, this tool makes a difference to the better.


Step 16
Marabou Muddler - Step 16

"There is always room for another bunch." And here it has just been tied in and spun.


Step 17
Marabou Muddler - Step 17

But that last one said 'good bye hook shank' so it's time to tie off the thread.


Step 18
Marabou Muddler - Step 18

Scissors or razor blade... another personal preference. I prefer the razor blade for most of it, even though you have to be careful so you don't cut too much.


Step 19
Marabou Muddler - Step 19
Now we're going to do a series of straight cuts to create a symmetrical head to work from.
1: Start with a cut under the head. Straight backwards and relatively close to the hook. Continue with a cut on the upper side, in the same angle as the top of the wing.
2: Cut down the sides and make also two smaller cuts in against the hook eye.
3: Make the top-bottom versions of the hook eye cuts.
4: A rough head seen from the front.


Step 20
Marabou Muddler - Step 20
Cut around the back of the head to separate it from the collar and create a little neck. Cut only the butt end of the hairs.


Last trim and done...

With a rough but symmetrical model, like the one we just made, the only thing left is rounding off the edges. Don't do it "smaller", just rounder... and it will be easy to make it STAY symmetrical.

Top view...
Top view...

'Marabou Muddler' doesn't mean 'yellow'...
Vary colors...



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