Beachglass Guru

Circle hooks

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I think we can all agree that all hooks are NOT created equal.  

 

That said, I've been fishing circle hook for a few years now on and off, but with the new bass regs in place for next season I'd like to get some opinions on what your favorite circle hooks are..

 

I use gama's on rare occasions, but more often than not I'll reach for an owner mutu or BKK inline circle.. played with the owner reef & rig this year also and liked them.. 

 

What do you folks prefer? What's you go to and why?

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Very interested too. Additionally, what hooks do you think provide good bang for your buck? I like budget hooks. :) 

 

Maybe that’s why I’m an eagle claw guy...

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6 mins ago, coastalfreak said:

Very interested too. Additionally, what hooks do you think provide good bang for your buck? I like budget hooks. :) 

 

Maybe that’s why I’m an eagle claw guy...

I fish Eagle Claw Circle Sea L 197 mainly because i got a few hundred for pennies each. Mostly 3/0.

While they get the job done they are brittle and they will break on big Drum.

Usually at the beach lip or landing them with max pressure.Have seen it enough to convince me.

Doesn't really bother me on the big fish I am going to release anyway but might bother you.

Also,they rust quickly and must be rinsed after each use.

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14 mins ago, olvart said:

I fish Eagle Claw Circle Sea L 197 mainly because i got a few hundred for pennies each. Mostly 3/0.

While they get the job done they are brittle and they will break on big Drum.

Usually at the beach lip or landing them with max pressure.Have seen it enough to convince me.

Doesn't really bother me on the big fish I am going to release anyway but might bother you.

Also,they rust quickly and must be rinsed after each use.

Thanks for the input. May give em a try. 

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When it comes to hooks and strength basic metallurgy comes into play.  Different alloys and manufacturing techniques only go so far to increase strength.  After a certain point making a hook harder also makes it too brittle to be useful.  If it's too hard to take a bend and recover it'll break without bending.  The hook has now become the weak link in the chain.  Reels are now stronger, super braid line is strong beyond reason so guys crank down on the drag and the load is now on the next weakest component, the hook.

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L 197 EC is the best circle for all around, I like the black nickels. Owner SSW is what I grouper and drum fish with, tried the reef and wrecks, reminded me of a beefy L197, not that I've ever bent one even on big sharks. Gamis a great because they are cheap, but they break sometimes.

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48 mins ago, Beachglass Guru said:

I think we can all agree that all hooks are NOT created equal.  

 

That said, I've been fishing circle hook for a few years now on and off, but with the new bass regs in place for next season I'd like to get some opinions on what your favorite circle hooks are..

 

I use gama's on rare occasions, but more often than not I'll reach for an owner mutu or BKK inline circle.. played with the owner reef & rig this year also and liked them.. 

 

What do you folks prefer? What's you go to and why?

VMC tournament in-line 6/0 to 8/0 depending on what your using for bait. 

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Just did an inventory and I still have about 5-6 hundred Eagle Claw circle Sea L197 from 2/0 to 7/0.

Even though I have had hook tips break off landing 25-30 lb. fish I still like these hooks. I fish by myself so I end up putting a lot of pressure on these hooks at the beach. And,it is mainly the 3/0 I use.

Just sayin it happens.

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30 mins ago, Dan Tinman said:

When it comes to hooks and strength basic metallurgy comes into play.  Different alloys and manufacturing techniques only go so far to increase strength.  After a certain point making a hook harder also makes it too brittle to be useful.  If it's too hard to take a bend and recover it'll break without bending.  The hook has now become the weak link in the chain.  Reels are now stronger, super braid line is strong beyond reason so guys crank down on the drag and the load is now on the next weakest component, the hook.

Great,knowledgeable observation.

 I don’t think I have ever had a treble hook break,they certainly bend.

Circle hooks seem to break at the tip?

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59 mins ago, coastalfreak said:

Thanks for the input. May give em a try. 

Do yourself a favor do some research on circle hooks. First time I saw them was in the 70s they came from Japan. My father and uncles started using them bottom fishing on there charter boats and a long line boat for Broadbills/Swordfish in south Florida. Fast forward 20 something years. The circle hook craze started with Captain Ronnie Hamilton and Captain Peter Wright for billfish populations world wide 20 something years ago. Fast forward to present Stripers in the east coast. In between VMC in-line have dominated the market for consistency and quality. You can take a 7/0 VMC in-line tournament hook and fish with it anywhere. From Stripers,Tarpon, all Pelagics and bottom fishing not many hooks are that versatile, they are a medium gage wired hook that is very strong. Now the challenge is getting use to using them biggest mistake I have made and many others have is changed between brands before understand how to use them properly. It takes some getting use to. If you find Eagle Claw works best for you then use them. Personally I wouldn’t fish a tournament or recreational with anything other then VMC. Hope this helps you. 

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I used gamas and eagle claw really I have no brand preference just make sure its sharp and will do the job just fine. Also I am not a fan of offset circle hooks because I have had gut hooked fish on them but that is my experience others may be different.

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One observation about circle hooks is sizing that is different from J hooks,Aberdeen hooks,etc based on mfg.

 

A 3/0 Owner is quite different than a 3/0 Eagle Claw or VMC

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37 mins ago, olvart said:

One observation about circle hooks is sizing that is different from J hooks,Aberdeen hooks,etc based on mfg.

 

A 3/0 Owner is quite different than a 3/0 Eagle Claw or VMC

This is why I recommend staying with one hook brand and style-meaning the gap between hook point and shank. You can adjust hook size up and down depending on size of bait and applications you fish. There’s going to be a lot of trail and error the first year we are forced to use circle hooks. Hook up ratios will continue to get better and better. 

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This is a good discussion because a friend and I made an aggrement to fish only circle hooks if we decided to chunk. I will say starting out it was not easy to find a cirlce hook that fit my needs and expectations.

-Early spring we were using hooks from the West Coast that were nearly $1.00 a piece and no one carried them anywhere local. 

- Finally hit the jackpot after much trial and error with another circle from Mustad in 10/0. ( Model 39944-BN). Trust me, this is a GOOD circle hook for chunking. 

- For eeling try Gamakatsu inline octopus circle hooks in 6/0 or 7/0 ( Model #360416) 

-Im glad i finally got away from the J hooks as the gut hooked fish was no longer acceptable. To be clear never once do i spike my rod. its always in hand and i would strike very quick with large 10/0 hooks but still had a gut hook approx 1/5 fish. 

- I recall one of the magazines ran a great article on this topic.  Tight lines. 

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I use EC and Owner Demon Perfect Circle 4/0 for live bait and 7/0 for cut bait for slot reds. Usually discard hooks after a full session for sure after 2 sessions.

 

Do not take a chance on terminal tackle!

 

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