Kim Kardashian Coffin Fly
by: JEB Hall
For many Southern Appalachian dry fly anglers, the last few weeks in May means a nightly quest in search of Eastern Green Drakes. The spinner stage of these mayflies is a ghostly white creature know as the Coffin Fly. With a white body, dark thorax, and spent wings, these huge insects fill the air and offer one of the largest surface meals of the year for area trout. While there are many patterns out there that are used to imitate these Drakes, the most effective of these are of the extended body variety. These bodies can be constructed of deer hair, hackle fibers, pre manufactured plastic parts, or dubbing. For those who like the look of a “little more junk in the trunk”, a dubbing style extended body like the one found on the Kim Kardashian Coffin Fly is both fun to tie and fun to fish. For those not familiar with this pattern’s name sake, a quick internet search will make it clear why her name is such a fitting handle for this sexy Coffin Fly imitation
Warning: Extended body flies are challenge for all, but the most efficient of fly tiers. This needle born, dubbing style body is not difficult, but takes time to construct with some trial and error. Manufacturing several of these bodies before completing the flies will make the process much more manageable.
Thread: Gordon Griffith’s Sheer Ultra Fine 14/0 Primrose, or Uni 8/0 Light Cahill
Hook: TMC 100 sz. 10-12
Dubbing: Wapsi Super Fine Dry Fly Dubbing- Light Cahill
Tail: Fibetts or Mayfly Tails- Dun, Dark Dun, or Black
Wing: Trout Hunter CDC- White, Tan, or Black mixed together.
Hackle: Whiting Farms Hebert Miner- Golden Badger
Constructing the Body:
Step 1: Put a large sewing needle into the fly vise and cover with wax. Cover the end of the needle with even wraps of thread approximately 1 1/4 the length of the desired body.
Step 2: After laying down a thread base, attach micro fibetts for tails. These can be left straight, or split using an x-wrap for a more natural appearance. Leave the butts of the the fibetts long so they can be used as an attachment point for the actual fly.
Step 3: Coat the thread base with a very small amount of Zap a Gap and dub the body. Keep the dubbing even and sparse. Once you dub onto the thread base it can not be easily removed.
Step 4: Whip finish at the base of the newly dubbed body. Using a bodkin, apply a tiny amount of Zap a Gap throughout the body. This will hold it together as it is removed from the needle.
Tying the Fly
Step 1: Tie onto the hook and lay down a thin thread base. Tie in the pre constructed extended body from above. Make sure that the body sweeps up from the shank with the fibetts turned to the top.
Step 2: Dub 2/3 of the way up the hook shank. Then, take three CDC feathers and tie them in tips back, similar to tying in a hair wing. Trim the butts of the feathers and coat the with thread. Make a few wraps behind the CDC feathers to have them stand slightly up. You do not want to “post” them like a parachute, or have them stand straight up.
Step 4: Tie in the hackle with the shiny side out and the length of the feather running toward the back of the fly. Then dub around the CDC wing and forward to the hook eye. After dubbing, palmer the feather both behind and in front of the CDC wing and tie off at the hook eye.
Step 5: Trim the CDC wing to a mayfly wing shape. Finally, trim the hackle from the bottom of the fly so the rides wing up and has no ability to roll over on its side.