Another fly tying related question...Can you tell I just spent lunch at the flyshop:D.
So in preparation for my trip out to striper heaven in June I am upgrading all my hooks from the mustad 34007s I use out here. The quality is not so great and since my fly tying has progressed a ton in the last year I might as well start using better hooks.
So I leaning towards tiemco 811s or partridge sea prince hooks.
Not thinking I could go wrong either way but for the sake of discussion let me hear your opinions.
why? Cause they are chemically sharpened and made of a super-tough light wire. The barbs are tiny and the quality flawless. They cast easier, and you can tie flies in bigger sizes without having the metal be a concern. I have never had one opened up by a fish and rarely every broken one - never by a fish. They sharpen quick even after I've sunk them into a sand bluff in a high wind all day. I don't use them for every SW fly, but I use them for most.
The 911s is the long shank brother of the 811s, another good hook when the pattern calls for it; like epoxy eels, etc.
I also use the sea prince because they have such humongous sizes for those big surfside herring patterns. They are really heavy metal wire in those 5/0 and 6/0 sizes though, and are a bear to cast on a single handed rod. No problem with a euro doublehander though. They have that bartleet look to them, but man are they heavy.
A lot of guys use the 800s, a very heavy wire short shank hook. I don't like them at all, presonal preference. They sure are tough but I've never been able to break a fish before a tippet, not on a fish anyway.
The gamakatsu SW hooks are tough and super sharp as well, but I have a problem with fish coming unbuttoned on their perfect bend hooks (I'm 100% barbless) and their limerick style bends are much heavier (thicker but not denser) wire hooks than the 811s, given the choice I am back to the standby TMC.
The 811s is to striper flies what the 7999 is to winter steelhead flies. It's not the only hook I use but it's the meat and potatoes hook.
Capt. Mel Simpson
01-31-2002, 07:59 PM
I began tying many years ago, when we used Alcock hooks, and then many years later I could get a really good hook from Edward L. Haas, and then when they were gone I found a very nice hook by Bob Johns called Winter Run. Now that those are all gone and I started saltwater flyfishing almost 25 years ago I have had to make some hook changes once more.
I recently switched from the 3407ss, (super strong) to the Owner AKI for baitfish imitations and for tarpon flies. The owner hooks are very strong and very sharp but you may need to use one size larger. I bend every barb and sharpen every hook and it is easier to do that with these hooks. I also use the Umpqua/Tiemco 777sp, (made by Owner). It's a long shank hook with a very sharp tip good for shrimp patterns both in saltwater and for BC steelhead. My only complaint in tying with them is that,
because I have a vise that will cover the point of the hook, the Owner's wide area just before the piont, will sometimes cause the hook to twist just slightly in the jaws.
I think it is important to get the right hook for the fly you are tying. I do not like to add any weight to my flies with the exception of occasionally using beadchain, and then only small. I prefere the size of the hook determine how deep the fly rides in the water.
The above is only meant as advise based on my experience, good luck.