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Flimsy vs Stiff Zonker Strips

Discussion in 'FlyTyingForums.com, Fly Tying, Trout Fishing' started by NEO, Nov 29, 2017.

  1. NEO

    NEO

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    I am trying to tie a fly called Bennett's Lunch Money and the tail calls for "Hareline Black Barred Zonker Strip, Gold Variant". I bought some zonker strips from Cabela's but they are super flimsy so when I tie in the tail it just flops down (think gravity). The picture of the fly being tied shows the zonker strip staying in place, almost like the zonker strip is hardened or stiff compared to what I bought. Are there different types of zonker strips in regards to how stiff or flimsy they are?
    [​IMG]
     
  2. flyrodder46

    flyrodder46

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    I have had some zonker strips that are a little stiffer than others, but to me the idea of a zonker strip is that it moves easily in the water creating a lifelike movement in the tail of a fly. If it was me I would just tie the fly with the "limp" strips and go for it.

    D
     
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  3. Gamechanger

    Gamechanger Premium Member

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    Ditto what flyrodder46 posted.

    Most patterns using zonker strips imitate leeches or minnows, and ideally, you want the zonker strip to imitate the undulation of a leech or the side-to-side movement of a minnow. While the strips may seem a little stiff when tying, once they are saturated with water, they turn pretty flimsy, which is what you want.

    Nice looking fly BTW.
     
  4. NEO

    NEO

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    Thanks for the info. I'll just continue to use what I have.

    Gamechanger, that's not my fly. Found that pattern online and am trying to duplicate it. My fly doesn't look that good, mostly because the zonker strips I use really show the skin and flops down when tied as a tail.
     
  5. Gamechanger

    Gamechanger Premium Member

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    Gotcha. Its a great looking pattern though and while your's may not look like the one in the photo, your's could very well perform every bit as good or better than the one pictured.

    I can't tell you how many times I've tied up a bunch of experimental flies that looked to me like they were sure-fire winners, only to have them under-perform to my expectations. And then there were times when I'd try a fly that took a HUGE leap of faith on my part simply because it didn't have that "look", only to have it catch fish after fish.

    Those are the times that remind me that I don't really know as much as I sometimes think I do about fly tying/fly fishing. :D
     
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  6. flyrodder46

    flyrodder46

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    ^^^yeah that^^^^

    D
     
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  7. Honyuk96

    Honyuk96

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    I don't think it's been mentioned but there are regular zonker strips and there are " magnum " zonker strips. A fly that size almost certainly uses the magnums. Good luck
     
  8. NEO

    NEO

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    Maybe that's the difference. I will look for magnum zonker strips the next time I'm at Schultz's or Cabela's.
     
  9. Honyuk96

    Honyuk96

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    Go Dawgs ! My brother in law played there
     
  10. NEO

    NEO

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    Go Dawgs! I was there from 89-93. Didn't play, just a fan. When did your brother-in-law play there?
     
  11. Honyuk96

    Honyuk96

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    He played 96 to 98
     
  12. When I think a zonker strip is going to foul itself around the hook I'll put a stripe or two of Clear Cure Goo on the hide from the rear tie-in point back to as far as needed to stiffen up the bunny strip. Another nice thing with this is that you can leave the rear of the strip flexible for more action if you like. I hope there's something in here that will help you out.
     
    flyrodder46 likes this.