Bead Flies and Adding Weight

I have had quite a few questions about adding extra weight to bead flies.

The short answer is that it is really not possible to add lead, or similar, to bead nymphs. But of course a gold or tungsten bead or two can be used when assembling the fly.

But when considering how much weight to use for a bead nymph, think on this:

  • Glass bead nymphs are relatively heavy, and in my experience heavier than similar lead weighted nymphs.
  • Because there is little or no fur or feather, little or no floatation from trapped air is possible.
  • The nymphs tend to be slimmer than ‘fur’ nymphs, and sink faster.

I think this ability to sink faster is one of the keys to the success of bead flies. They are ‘fishing’ longer than standard fur and feather nymphs.

Another question that hits my email is whether bead flies will take brown trout. This I think is based on the thought and fact that rainbows tend to take more colourful flies than browns. The bead flies I make for browns use dark coloured beads, often all black.

The bead fly article that raises all these questions is here.

Posted by Tony Bishop