I tried looking around and couldn't fine specific specs for the AJ hook. I'm under the impression the only difference compared to the 1150s is the finish. But I don't know that for a fact.I like daiichi 1150 14’s. Anyone know if it is the same wire for the Alec Jackson version?
I have had good luck w/ the 1150s. Kinda wish it was 2xh in those smallest sizes, but the 1x is a nice compromise for keeping the fly body slim. I think the thing that really helps is the eye direction. My guess is that it leverages less than a straight or down eye. You can get them all the way down to 18s, which is pretty small since it's a short hook already.
You might consider Firehole's 637. Unfortunately it has a down eye, but it's 1x short, 2x gape and listed as extra-heavy wire. (Their weights are light (dry), medium, heavy, and extra-heavy, so this is their thickest wire.) Sizes all down to 22. I don't have a ton of experience with their hooks yet, but what I have tried hasn't had any obvious problems.