Here is the fly pattern sheet for the Copper John Nymph.

Copper John Nymph |
Copper John Nymph Materials |

Create pattern variations using different colored Ultra wire. I use Copper, Red, and Blue, but Ultra wire comes in many colors. A good resource is John Barr’s book entitled Barr Flies.




TMC 5262 or Dai Riki 730 #8 – 20


Uni 8/0 black


Gold bead to match hook size


10 – 15 wraps


Brown goose biot


Ultra wire


Peacock herl

Wing case 1:

Thin skin – black 

Wing case 2:

Pearl flashabou or Mirage opal tinsel


Hungarian Partridge or brown hen hackle

Wing case coating:

UV resin 


  1. Slide bead on hook and place hook in vise.
  2. Place 10 – 15 wraps of lead on hook and slide forward and snug to bead.
  3. Begin thread on hook, covering lead and position thread at barb.
  4. Tie in goose biots with curve extending away from hook. Continue thread wraps over biots and onto lead to create tapered body.
  5. Begin tying in copper wire directly behind hook eye and on top of hook. Wind thread to barb and back to eye. Wind wire forward to 75% mark. This method will create a nice taper and add weight.
  6. Move thread back over copper body to 50% mark.
  7. Tie in one strand of pearl flashabou or Mirage opal tinsel.
  8. Tie in thin skin with dull side up
  9. Tie in 3 – 5 pieces of peacock herl by the tips and wind forward to bead.
  10. Select a hackle feather and clip off the tip, creating a “V”. Place feather over top of fly and position so hackle tips touch hook point. Hackle should lie along the side of body.
  11. Pull thin skin forward over thorax and tie down.
  12. Pull flashabou forward over thin skin, being careful to center on thin skin and tie down.
  13. Whip finish.
  14. Place a drop of UV Resin on wing case and use bodkin to cover all of wing case. Allow to cure.


The key to tying any fly is proportions. That also applies to utilizing the right size wire for a Copper John body. Here is the recommended Ultra and lead wire sizes for a variety of hooks.

Hook size

Lead wire

Ultra wire




14 – 16









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