"How to tie the Good Doctors Beetle"


In 2005 a Transvaal fisherman gave me a black and lime green foam beetle in exchange for some GRHE nymphs. Having fished other beetle patterns before, such as the COCH-Y-BUNDU and Quality-Street, I decided to give it a whirl although it was big and ugly! The fish responded with a strike so spectacular that I am still tying and fishing beetles rather than any other fly.

This fly is neither brand new nor the best fly for Sterkfontein, but it is fun. Fun to tie and fun to fish. Fun to see new fishermen get smashed on the strike or an old hand striking too soon. Fun to see a broad smile on any fisherman’s face with a perfect hook-up.

Only the paint job is new. I use Metallic Acrylic paint (water based) for colour and Seal Skin by Heritage as a sealant. Anything from 2 to 4 coats of sealant will work but your base layer of colour must be very thin.

I fish the beetle Arab style. I cast it out and light a Camel! Very little movement is needed and please don’t strike. Most of all have FUN! (Dr Hans Van Zyl)


Preparing the Foam



1. Cut some 2mm black foam in strips of 150mm length and bevel the cut by holding your knife at an angle of about 70 degrees. Width 4-5mm for #12, 5-6 for #10 and 6-7 for #8hooks.


2. Paint the strip in an irregular pattern and very lightly with a bronze paint on face side and let it dry for an hour or so, then paint the back side. Allow to dry for approximately 4 hours. By first cutting as many strips as you want and then painting the whole lot you can prepare enough foam for as many flies as you want to tie. A single strip will render about 7 no. 12 flies, or 6 no. 10 or 5 no. 8 flies. By preparing a number of strips in different sizes, you will save a lot on hackle, as the butt of the hackle is often good for a no. 8 and the tip good for a no. 12. You can store the strips at this stage, but I prefer to first dip them once in Seal-Skin to protect the foam against moisture.


3. Dip the strip in Seal-Skin about halfway then stick a pin through the wet point and dip from the other side. Remove excess Seal-Skin by scraping the strip over the edge of the bottle opening. Try to work as sparingly as possible to create a very thin layer as this shit is expensive! Then hang up to dry for half a day. This is the ideal stage at which to store your strips


Cialis @ The Good Docter’s Beetle


1. Dress a no. 8 or 10 Gripp- 12804 with tying thread and tie in a strip of foam just behind the eye of the hook. Loosely wrap the thread towards the bend of the hook to create 3 or 4 segments and tie in tightly just before the hook bend. I like to tie my hooks fairly proud to ensure a good hook-up.


2. Now tie in a good length of hackle and dub the thread with a copper coloured dubbing.


3. Dub forwards to the eye then palmer the hackle forwards in 4 or 5 wide turns. Tie off the hackle and snip off the excess


4. Bend the foam strip forwards, pull tightly and tie off well then snip off the excess foam


5. Trim the hackle


6. Your finished and final Beetle