Anyone here fish the Mustad Circle Streamer hooks?

Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by Alexander, Dec 20, 2013.

  1. Alexander

    Alexander Fishon

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    Bought a bunch of Mustad Circle Streamer hooks C71S SS 2xh/1xl. Before these hooks I've never seen circle streamer hooks before. I've seen "regular" circle hooks but never streamer. So I've been tying up some flies on them and can't wait to fish them.

    Anyhow, do any of you use them and notice a difference in hook up/retaining weight or any other thoughts/experiences with a streamer hook like this?
     
  2. formerguide

    formerguide Active Member

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    I've never used the streamer circle hooks before, but many years ago when circle hooks first started becoming popular, I tied up some flies for stripers and bluefish to try. Played around with them a bit, and I am not a fan in the least...

    The idea behind the circle hook of course, is that you don't need/want to strike when a fish hits, but let the hook slowly come tight and the fish, in essence, sets the hook itself. Also, you should have fewer deep hook sets in theory, which makes sense when bait fishing. Bait is where they make perfect sense, particularly with big pelagic fish like billfish and the like.

    But it doesn't make nearly as much sense when fly fishing. Firstly and foremost, fish don't want tp hold onto artificials, and so the circle hook immediately loses much of it's effectiveness. And even more troubling for me, I do NOT want to change my innate, built-in response to strike when a fish hits, especially if switching between hook styles. The ability to naturally and without thought strip-striking a fish when you get an eat, to me, is invaluable. I do not want to have to consciously make an adjustment and change what comes naturally to me to accommodate a different hook style.

    Just my $.02. I think circle hooks certainly have their place. I also think there's a reason that they have virtually no presence in the fly fishing arena, either commercially or individually. Good luck though, be interested to hear your thoughts and results after trying.

    Dan
     
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  3. Jeff Dodd

    Jeff Dodd Active Member

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    I am with Dan. The circle hooks i use are for fishing bait. I use them for halibut with a horse herring lashed with a rubber band. When the fish turns to leave, the circle hook turns and sets in the corner. If you set the hook early, it will pull right out.

    Maybe these are different.
     
  4. underachiever

    underachiever !

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    I've used them a bit when jetty fishing. They work great for lingcod but the way they strike it seems most any hook would work.
     
  5. Don Freeman

    Don Freeman Free Man

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    IMG_1038.JPG IMG_2554 012.jpg

    I use that very hook with tube flies for fishing chum, and haven't foul hooked one in
    the 5 years or so since I started. You can cast into big milling schools of them, feel the line sliding over and through the pack, but when one bites, it's generally right in the side of the mouth.

    Most of the gear I see broken is the result of snagging, as it's hard to keep from hanging up on a fin when they are tightly packed. It's also much easier to remove the hooks without getting close to the teeth, or, god forbid, touching a chum.
     

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  6. Jeff Dodd

    Jeff Dodd Active Member

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    Cool Don, thanks. That is a great idea and use for these hooks.
     
  7. Alexander

    Alexander Fishon

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    Well, I hit the salt today to give them a test run. Got four strikes today all in about a 30 minute window, one short strike, two came off and one to hand. I did notice that the last one a was mentally in the zone and did a nice strip set. The other ones I had funky hook setting reactions, but the one that came to hand I felt the grab, I remained collected, set the hook with a strip and fishon. The last one was on the circle streamer hook, the other two on "normal hooks".
     
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  8. formerguide

    formerguide Active Member

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    Disagree. Their signature series hooks are every bit as good as Gamakatsu or Owner hooks in comparable styles, I tied on some of them for years for almost all of my striper and bonefish flies.

    However, yes, their standard wire, non-chemical hooks are not nearly as good as others. But they also suffised for years for many, myself included, they've landed more fish than any other brand I'll venture, and they are cost effective for lots of folks.

    A hook I loved and never see around anymore was the Varivas, short shank saltwater hook. I loved them for inverted Clousers and similar patterns...

    I remember when the only hooks available for tying were Mustad, or the very occasional Partridge of Redditch. Then a few VMC hooks showed up, but the real ground breaker was Tiemco. I think the largest improvements in fly fishing since I began 30 years ago is hook quality, and tippet strength and quality as well.

    $.02

    Dan
     
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  9. Alexander

    Alexander Fishon

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    Yes the ones I have are the SS and they are nice, looks like they are made for fly tying. Anyhow, here are pics of both flies that got SRC attention this morning.
    The chartreuse and green one is a Blair's Baiter (taken from Less Johnson's FF CCT book)
    The other one a copy from a visual someone showed me - this one got the good grab and landed fish.
     

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  10. fish-on

    fish-on Waters haunt me....

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    I have used circle hooks exclusively when I got stationed in Florida. It has worked great for me. When it comes to flies, I believe the type of fish I'm targeting has a lot to do with it. For snook, tarpon, jacks and fish that slash and turn when they take flies, it works incredibly well because they hook themselves. But for those that sip or inhale flies, I can't quite convince myself that it will work quite as well. In my head I think they're able to spit it out almost immediately when they realize it's not the real thing. When I came back to Washington, I abandoned circle hooks. Not sure why, but now that you got me thinking, I will start tying some flies with it and see how it works.

    John
     
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  11. fish-on

    fish-on Waters haunt me....

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    I agree, When I used to deck hand sportfishing for tuna, 90% of the time, we were using Mustads and they have landed some of the biggest fish around and this was before all the high-tech hook stuff came into play.

    Tight lines,

    John
     
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  12. Alexander

    Alexander Fishon

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    From what I gather when SRC attack baitfish they are voracious and strike hard, I don't think I've ever had to do much hook setting with SRC, in fact when I go what I call Trout "river mode" hook set on them I usually loose the fish. But in the salt they are vicious strikers often setting the hook themselves. It's that strip, strip, strip, strip, smack. You feel like you suddenly get stopped and then it's usually pretty much hooked up, if not it seems like generally it's a short strike. A bad hook up like earlier today when the fish came off with a few solid head shakes, probably because I got giddy and set it before the fish could hit it right. I don't know. Which I could see under water footage of SRC strikes to see what they do.
     
  13. Alexander

    Alexander Fishon

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    Oh and BTW, that Hanked Lite Brite stuff sucks to work with but dang it looks good in the water!!!! Very baitfish glimmer like realism and then that Clouser tie, great action, the SRC agreed as well! :D
     
  14. James Harrington

    James Harrington Active Member

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    Alex,

    Have you ever tried the Hareline's Ice Dub Shimmer Fringe? Its basically just like Angel Hair or Lite Brite but it is fused at the ends so waste is minimal. Just trim out a little section and lash it on the hook. They also blend darker over lighter colors so its basically already setup like how you would want to tie a baitfish in dark over light.
     
  15. Alexander

    Alexander Fishon

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    I should check it out sometime! Hit the water again and the fly that did all the damage was the lite-brite fly. Looks really good in the water! Very fishy.
     
  16. SilverFly

    SilverFly Active Member

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    Already replied to the other post but yes, I have used Mustad C17 circle hooks. They work fine for fly fishing, at least for intermediate line applications. Not sure about swinging but suspect they would work for that also since the grabs are so aggressive.

    I started using them for stillwater steelhead fishing in Columbia river estuaries above Bonneville dam. One summer about 10 years ago, I had 2 fish (fortunately both hatchery) inhale flies past the gill rakers and were bleeding out when I got them to the boat. I'd read about how circle hooks "always" hook in the corner of the mouth and found the Mustad C17's online and tied up some of my favorites in sizes 6 and 8. After missing some grabs by setting the hook, I found the restraint to let the fish turn and simply come tight. While I still forget sometimes and set the hook (did it twice this summer), I have yet to have a fish come unbuttoned once they are on. Ditto on the comments regarding foul hooking as this can be a problem in the Bonneville pool fisheries.

    Other than steelhead, I hooked my first tarpon on a circle hook fly. My guide in Belize asked to see my fly box and picked out a Black Death tied on a 3/0 Mustad C17 even though I had more patterns tied on standard hooks. A half hour later I was watching my backing melt away as a 90 lber was making a run for the border.

    Solid hookups, easier on the fish, greatly reduced foul-hooking, and reduced point wear. Just need to get past the hookset instinct.
     
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