Broken Barbs


Active Member
I’ve been enjoying the morning filling some vacant spots in my fly box. I started by pinching the
barbs on some TMC 2302 hooks. About half of the hooks the barb flattened nicely on the other half the barbs broke. When I looked at the hook with a magnifier there is a small rough spot left from the broken barb. I’ve had this happen before and have never really though about it, but I have a couple questions.
Does the broken barb compromise the hook?
Does the fact that some barbs broke and others flattened indicate a quality problem with the hooks?
Is there some technique or something else that I’m doing that is causing the barbs to break?
That said, I’m over half way through the 100 count box and I can’t recall having any problems and none of the hooks have broken in use.



TMC seems a tad more brittle than the other Asian hooks. If it is just the barb that is breaking off, that's good. I've had problems with TMC hooks snapping off at the hook bend when I clamp them in my tying vise.
I've had problems with TMC hooks snapping off at the hook bend when I clamp them in my tying vise.
What vice and where are you clamping them? I probably haven't tied quite as many flies as you, but a couple thousand later I can count on one hand the number of hooks I've ever had break, and they've never been TMCs. (Heck I don't think I even need all five fingers.) Dai-Riki on the other hand............straight up POS junk as near as I can tell. Barbs breaking, hook points breaking off (while fishing), bends opening up, etc. I finally just had to get rid of them.


This was when TMC first came out. I'm using a Dyna-King Barracuda vise. I now primarily use Spear-It and Daiichi hooks. I avoid Dai-Riki when I can.


Not to be confused with Freestone
I purchased a ton of Tiemco hooks on e-Bay some years ago (when one could actually get some great deals) and they tend to do the same. The ones that snap, I just use my Leatherman and squeeze a bit harder to mash flat...they work just fine. What I don't like is when temper of the wire used is so high it makes them prone to break when they hooked on rocks.