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Do you consider gap size of your hooks important?


Rob G
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For your soft bait guys, spin and casting guys,

 

Do you feel the gap size on your hooks correlate well with a greater chance of a hook-up on a hit? Do you feel you get more solid hook sets and fish holding power (lose less fish) with a greater gap? Can you go too large? or do you concern yourself more with just the size of the hook and gap is what it it is ? Of course we'll assume all the hooks are equally sharp.

 

I've been experimenting with much wider gapped hooks for my fly tying and though I might? hang up more, I still haven't come to a conclusion yet.

 

Just curious as to your thoughts and experiences and as always, thank you for your input.

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When I fish at my place in northern WI, I usually use a # 2 circle hook. Don't hook up with as many fish as I should. I think it's because the smallies are on average a bit larger. My buddy uses a 2/0 circle and has better hook ups. I will be using that size also in the future.

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This hook gap issue applies to all types of angling. I have been struggling with a popper body shape (bulbous with a deep recessed concave face). Standard hooks don't provide enough gap and the fish cannot get hooked, even though they attack the fly with zeal.

 

Here's what the fly looks like: Greenis.__99864_std.jpg

 

They look pretty but the hook gap is too small, so we're changing it. I'm going to try a Mustad 37187 which should provide enough distance behind the hook, as well as an elongated gap, to solidly hook fish. This is a standard hair bug hook and a bit hard to find.

37187.jpg

Anyone having experience tying these bulbous bodied (Mini-Me's - Rainy's) flies, let me know what hooks you use. I'm interested in those of you that have fished them extensively and know for sure you get high percentage solid hook ups.

 

Thanks

 

Brad Miller

FlyBass.com

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The hook gap does make a difference especially with poppers. I have had all kinds of misses on poppers due to hook gap.

I like a bit longer shank also. I mostly tie on a Jude-Bug anymore. The slender body and longer shank allow for more and better hook ups.

WOW! Did I just really say all that? I do have an idea for Jude to try on the Jude-Bug. I'll talk to him about it sometime.

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Guest rich mc

i have switched to larger hooks for my ultimate worm. i usea 1/0 ewg worm hook and a size 1 on a smaller worm. i have been using a kahle hook on a stand up worm . and have switched froman eagle claw to a gammy shiner hook sa it wont ruust before my eyes. it has a nice gap rich

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Rich, about 20 years ago when I first started tying flies for smallmouth, the local "expert" told me to tie on a size 8 because that was the proper size for a bass with a small mouth. Hmmm? It wasn't long after that I started using a size 6 for much of my smallie flies and later on stepped up to a size 4 for my streamers and even a 2 on certain patterns. For years I've even opened up the gaps on the size 4 in hopes of better sticking power. And now I'm experimenting with wide gap hooks in even larger sizes. When I look at John's swim jigs and other "huge" hooks, I'm thinking maybe I'm missing something, other than fish that is.

 

Brad,

the one thing I found that increased the hook ups on my poppers was to follow Lefty's recommendations and make sure the shank of the hook is long enough that I keep the point of the hook behind the end of the popper body and not under it. I also cut out all hackle or material used between the shank of the hook and the point, in fact clearing out the gap as much as possible. Again, I also take my pliers and gently open up the gap to where the hook point is actually turned down slightly away from the shank and not parallel to the shank. This made a huge difference for me in increasing hook ups to strikes.

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Clouser's rule of thumb for Bass Poppers: "The gap should be as wide as the popper body diameter; and the shank should be twice as long as the body." (I suppose one would use width for a square head like a blockhead.) When I make poppers this way they just look right.

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