The Fritz / Cactus Chenille lure is basically made up of a marabou tail and fritz / cactus chenille for the body. It can be tied weighted normally with a gold bead at the eye or unweighted. Different hook sizes can be used for this pattern, either longshank or short, heavy wire or fine, long or short marabou tails and even with added flash into the tail. Possibilities are endless. Make sure that you have a variety of sizes in your fly box.
STEP 1 : Insert a gold bead onto the hookshank (3.8mm shown on a size 8 L/S hook). Insert the hook into the vice and wind the thread down the hookshank to a position opposite the barb.
STEP 2 : Take a bunch of marabou. As you can from the photo, the marabou has quite a bit of bulk on the end that will be tied onto the hookshank. We need to remove as much of this as possible.
STEP 3 : To remove the bulk / fluff, place the marabou tips in your left hand between index finger and thumb and with the right hand move your thumb and index finger nails down the marabou stripping the webby marabou bulk off the stems.
STEP 4 : To make the marabou easier to tie in, I tend to wet the remaining marabou stems and pull it between the index finger and thumb to make a slim profile..
STEP 5 : Now catch in the marabou with thread and secure along the hookshank. Try and keep the thread as uniform as possible. Return the thread to the original catch in point of the marabou.
STEP 6 : Take a length of fritz / cactus chenille and strip a small amount of fritz fibres from one end so the centre core is left bare. Tie the core in and secure with thread. Return the thread to the gold bead.
STEP 7 : I've found that the easiest way to wind the fritz is to perform one wrap of fritz around the hook shank, then wet your fingers and stroke the fritz fibres back towards the hook bend, then another wrap of fritz, wet fingers, stroke back and repeat. Continue winding up to the gold bead.
STEP 8 : Before the last two winds of fritz, strip a small amount of fibres so the centre core is left bare. This makes a neater finish to the fly.
Final: Continue with the last two winds of fritz. Now to finish wrap the bare stripped core twice and pull down hard so that it slips behind the gold bead. Secure with thread, trim any waste, whip finish, trim and drop a little varnish onto the exposed thread.