Tube flies and hook connection [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Tube flies and hook connection

03-18-2002, 08:24 AM
I am about to venture into the area of tube flies. Since I can't use weighted flies for Atlantic salmon I intend to start with the Q tip variety for tube material. I am not sure whether you need to secure the hook with a separate plastic sleeve. What is the purpose of this? Should the hook not simply slide up into the hollow tube? I read that some people flare both ends of the tube. I guess that helps to secure the thread. But is it really necessary?
Thanks in advance.


03-18-2002, 08:38 AM
HMH sells a great kit with plastic tubes ready to go. You can flare the ends with a lighter to act as a flange for thread as well as ease the tippet into the opening; I only flare the front end and use a short length of surgical tubing to hold the eye of the hook on the back end. If the fly is tied in the round you don't really need to fix the hook position, so skip the surge tube, but doing so helps the fly ride the way you want with the hook down for upright winged flies. Some use a little bead to keep the eye and tube apart and moving freely.

The larger globug style hooks make good tube hooks, but I hate going up to the counter with them and getting asked "so, you tying GLOBUGS?". I just sigh and reply "I don't do globugs".

03-18-2002, 11:23 AM

I just finished up my first dozen steelhad tubes yesterday. The most promising look to be the flies tied in the round. A pattern I have been fishing for a few years (from the pages of Wild Steelhead and Salmon magazine) called the Tippet Shrimp, is a natural for tubes. You won't need a hook keeper for this type of fly. Tie your hook on with a short perfection loop and pull the knot into the tube, this seems to secure the hook but should still allow it to pull free when a fish is hooked.

I also tied a few bunny leaches on tubes, they will need some type of hook keeper to keep them swimming upright. The tubing that my buddy gave me for hook keeper material is small diameter black rubber, it slips tight on the end of the tube and holds the hook securely but I don't like the way the fly looks with a black but. I will be looking around for somthing similar in a clear tubing.

On another related note, I didn't have a tube fly mandrel, so I took a large paper clip, clamped it in my vise with about an inch sticking straight out, then bent a kink in the middle with a pair of hemostats. The tube slips tight over the kink, seems to work fine, I tied a dozen flies this way no problem.

In looking through my boxes of hooks I came up with some Tiempco 800S size 4 saltwater hooks. They seem to be just the ticket for the flys I tied up. By the way Juro FYI it is snowing here this morning.


03-18-2002, 11:36 PM
But if you hit a good hobby shop that has gear for building model airplanes and a trop. fish store you'll find tube fly tying goodies out the wazanga. And a ton cheaper than buying (all-be-it's very good stuff, so no disrespect intended) 'pre-made' tube fly stuff.

Copper, Alm, brass tube, white plastic materials runs 65-75 cents for a foot long section. A tube cutter, reamer will run you about 6-7 bucks and last a life time, etc., and etc. The Trop. fish store will have several different sized clear plastic tubing for basic body material or to sections for hook holders. Lots of fun to play, and very inexpensive. Now if I could just get the hook thing down I'd be a head of the game.
Malcom, looking forward to the "carp" hooks.

03-18-2002, 11:44 PM
Had a chance to try that hook I sent your way?? Got a pack of size of 4s sitting here with your name on them. :) If they aren't too small, I'll throw em in the mail!!! :)

03-19-2002, 05:26 AM
The envelope came early last week but corner had ripped open and hook was gone. When you get back from you Oly. Pen. trip give me a e mail shout and I'll call you and just have you send me a package or two to 'test drive.'

Malcom is sending over some of the 'carp' hooks so I can also give them a try. This missing fish has become most frustrating.

Willie Gunn
03-19-2002, 03:58 PM
Sorry Fred.
I am still waiting for size 4 others are "instock" got sidetracked this week and am fishing on the Spey, 2 fish today both on 2.5" Willie Gunn (what else). Both C&R from trebles. One fish was very interesting my new reel jammed it would give line but not retreive, backing , lively fish in a big water and skin is an interesting combination, smarting would be a good description. Playing a salmon off the reel is an experience I would rather skip in the future.

Still a good day.

The reel makers said did I drop it, most of you probably herd my reply I certainly did not need a phone.


03-20-2002, 11:35 AM
on hooks, check out some of the live bait hooks from gamakatsu (not cheap!) and owner(Yikes!) I've only used tubes in salt for blue water and inshore in Baja (so far), but these hooks are Capitol S-T-I-C-K-Y, and durable. Available in straight and offset hook points. Just avoid the heavy wire "fly-liner" types. Real tough to get penetration on soft takes.