Lusk’s Koura VIII

Further Design Work

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Despite having created a fish catching koura pattern that was relatively easy to tie I was not happy with the fly. The lack of bulk, requiring sinkant or wetting to get through the surface film, and the water absorbing mohair yarn that made the fly too heavy once wet left me unsatisfied.

While quick to tie, the lack of bulk could not be overcome easily with mohair yarn. Multiple wraps of leech yarn meant the fly absorbed too much water and became too heavy. So I started looking for other body material that would tie quickly and easily but not absorb as much water as the mohair yarn.

Over the summer I was given a Nor-Vice, and spent a lot of time watching Nor-Vice videos. One that I found interesting was creating dubbing brushes. About the same time I learned about using the Nor-Vice to create dubbing brushes I found some Enrico Puglisi EP-Streamer Brush Short fibers.

The EP brushes in black and root beer twisted together made a nice contrasting coloured koura.

Pattern #8                   EP Brush fly

Hook:             Kamasan B200                        #10 or #6

Claws:             Two Brown Marabou, curves facing out

Body:               EP Streamer Brush Short Fibre black & root beer twisted together before tying in.

Weight:           3.5mm tungsten bead Waspi 5/32” tungsten bead

This fly was easy to tie and came up looking good. The only real problems where the price of the Brushes, and that twisted up they did not scale down well onto a size 10 long shank hook.

I spent a bit of time looking online at different dubbing brush manufacturing techniques, and decided to make my own rather than ordering the Nor-Vice Dubbing Brush Table. Regrettably I did not do what I recommend any tier does when considering a new pattern or technique, refer to

Making my own dubbing brush table was interesting but unnecessary. James at In the Riffle uses a drill, a piece of cardboard and his tying vice as an anchor, which is much simpler and every bit as effective as a dubbing brush table.Dark Brown Extra Select Craft Fur laid out on the first strand of dubbing brush wire.

Concurrent to beginning to use dubbing brushes, I wanted to experiment with Sculpting Flash Fibre from Just Add H2O. I was interested in this material because it appeared possible that it would be able to be spun on a hook like deer hair.

Making Dubbing Brushes

Using the set up from the In the Riffle video, I experimented with a couple of different materials. I used some of the sculpting fibre I had attempted to spin onto the hook, and Extra Select Craft Fur, as used in the In the Riffle video.

While the sculpting fibre worked adequately and I blended black and brown together for a nice irregular colour this material was not as easy to use as the Extra Select Craft Fur.

The key to getting a good bulky dubbing brush that is also easy to tie onto the hook shank is to lay out the material so only the butt ends of it are captured by the wire of dubbing brush.

When cutting the Craft Fur to go on the dubbing brush start at the top of the patch of fur and cut right across the patch evenly to get consistent lengths of fur.Dubbing Brushes in Brown & Black. The Brown one is the best because of the uniform approach to cutting the craft fur.

Weight for #6 Hooks

I ran out of my limited supply of Waspi tungsten beads. These are shaped so they go on a Kamasan B200 #6. My other beads, including several that I purchased in an attempt to get onto the hook, did not pass the bend of the hook so had to be set aside for other materials.

What did work was tungsten slotted coneheads, which have a very limited amount of metal around the hole, so go onto a #6 Long Shank very easily. This solved my weight problem.

I also had some spare lead eyes I had used for bonefish flies in the past, and decided to give them a try to see if these kept the fly up the right way. It did, but the conehead & bead head flies seemed to be stabilised by the claws and presented correctly anyway.

Pattern #9          Sculpting Flash Fibre Dubbing Brush

Hook:             Kamasan B200                        #10 or #6

Claws:             Two Brown Marabou Strung not Woolly bugger

Body:               Black & Brown Sculpting Flash Fibre dubbing brush

Weight:           3.5mm Tungsten Bead or 5mm Tungsten Conehead

Sculpting Fibre Dubbing Brush Koura

Pattern #10         Large Craft Fur Dubbing Brush Koura

Hook:             Kamasan B200                        #6

Claws:             Two Brown Marabou Strung not Woolly Bugger Marabou

Body:               Dark Brown Extra Select Craft Fur dubbing brush

Weight:           5mm Tungsten Conehead or 3/16th Lead Eyes

Both these patterns I scaled down onto a 10 Long Shank hook, and both worked well. The Craft Fur dubbing brush seemed easier to make, and easier to tie into the hook, and also seemed to look a little better so that became my go to material.Extra Select Craft Fur Dubbing Brush Koura #6 

Pattern #11         Small Craft Fur Dubbing Brush Koura 

Hook:        Kamasan B200                        #10

Claws:       Two Brown Marabou Strung not Woolly Bugger Marabou

Body:         Dark Brown Extra Select Craft Fur dubbing brush

Weight:      3.5mm Tungsten Bead or a 5/32nd Lead Eyes

Extra Select Dubbing Brush Koura on a Kamasan B200 #10


I. Lusk’s Koura | II. Further Design Work | III. Trout & Flies for Similar Conditions | IV. Design Features for the Next Prototype | V. Rethinking the Koura Pattern | VI. Prototype 3, 4 & 5 | VII. A Fish Catching Fly | VIII. Further Design Work II | IX. Lusk’s Koura Tying Instructions | X. Fishing Lusk’s KouraXI. The Best Pattern | XII. A Revised Pattern | XIII. A Jig Hook Koura 

This series of articles is available as an ebook on Amazon.