Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

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Brad in Texas
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Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby Brad in Texas » Mon Jul 02, 2018 5:56 pm

It took a while but I finally have largely moved away from offset and EWG hooks. There's a back story here but I won't go into details nor my motivating factors, just results.

Since I have reverted to just straight shank worm hooks for, well, worms, but also Keitech shad/fluke looking baits, my hook-up ratio is just so very improved.

I get the idea that you certainly need a wide gap hook for plastics, say like a Fat Ika. Those little fatties need a broad hook. But, if I can get a straight shank hook into a plastic properly, it just seems better.

I suppose the reason behind it is if you T-Rig a worm or shad shaped plastic, you can leave the hook point slightly embedded in the plastic where it sits at a very acute angle ready to drive out and snag fish flesh or bone. I don't get this, miss more often with hooks where the points are "flat."

Roboworm Rebarb hooks are a favorite but there are many out there with little plastic keepers that work well.

Any others sort of moving or pushing this way? Good and bad angles shown below, both excellent Owner hooks.

Cheers! Brad

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby toddmc » Mon Jul 02, 2018 7:59 pm

Heavy to medium wire EWG hooks really require an extra heavy "shotgun blast" style hook set after a little hesitation. It often takes the fish extra time to get bulky baits down in their crushers. I try to count to three and hit em hard. We often spend so much time fishing light wire hooks with finesse plastics that require a to the side sweeping reel set that we really need to be conscious of changing our hook setting technique. I was reminded of this about two weeks ago when fishing a full size thick-skinned tube on a Bubba Shot at night. I was throwing a 7'3" heavy action rod, 20 lb. fluoro, and an Owner 3/0 EWG Plus hook. It takes a hook with that much gap to Texas rig a bulky tube. I didn't have a better option. I did a quick and weak sideways reel set on the first two fish, and missed them completely. I proceeded to wait a couple of seconds and hit em hard on the next dozen or so fish without a miss. The hook was penetrating the hard parts of the mouth with no problem. It takes a few summer night tournaments to get me retrained from the light line worm fishing that our beat to death clear water SoCal lakes often require.
Many of the modern hooks really require braid or heavy fluoro to get a good hook set because they are so thick. Many anglers forget to match their hooks, rod, and line, making them miss or lose more fish than they should.
I like to fish a straight shank hook with bigger worms also. I fell in love with the straight shank Owners when they came out. They changed the game for me. The straight shank hooks usually require a little less effort to set because of the angle you seem to like. You can use shrink tubing on the Owner straight shank hooks to make them like the Rebarb. Every worm hook in my boxes has shrink tube keepers.
Here are the straight shank, Wide Gap Plus, and Downshot Owner hooks with a shrink tube keeper:
IMG_0344.JPG
IMG_0344.JPG (19.62 KiB) Viewed 760 times

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby Houndfish » Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:33 am

What size shrink tubing are you using?

I am mostly a Straight Shank hook guy but use a lot of Offest Roundbend hooks for softer plastics when I want a a more secure hold on the plastic. Putting keepers on SS hooks is a great idea! I love the Owner Finesse Heavy Cover hooks but they are quite expensive.

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby cst » Tue Jul 03, 2018 3:00 pm

How do you get the little barb on the shrink tubing? It just happens from cutting?

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby DirtyD64 » Tue Jul 03, 2018 3:29 pm

Houndfish wrote:What size shrink tubing are you using?

I am mostly a Straight Shank hook guy but use a lot of Offest Roundbend hooks for softer plastics when I want a a more secure hold on the plastic. Putting keepers on SS hooks is a great idea! I love the Owner Finesse Heavy Cover hooks but they are quite expensive.



You cut the shrink tubing at an angle, so after cutting one, you cut the second one straight across and have two barbs ready to go. Make sure that you apply a wipe or so of super glue before, just heating them makes mine always fall off.

I have done this a while with a variety of hooks, but primarily use the Gamakatsu Round Bend Straight Shanks with a custom barb for dropshotting. The shrink wrap must be very small, I think I use the 3/32 to 1/16 size. Not sure exactly what the size is, I think that is correct though, I know I bought the 3/16 size (smallest Home Depot had) once and it was too big even for flipping style hooks.

This thread is great to me, I had a very similar revelation. I was using EWG and offset round bends for Carolina rigging and it just wasn't working. Now for 90% TX rigging, ALL Carolina rigging, and a few other techniques I use straight shank medium or light wire hooks. Still prefer the Owner Downshot hooks for dropshots though because they have a great hookup ratio still, stay weedless and the bite of the hook is big enough to catch even on lighter bites.

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby toddmc » Wed Jul 04, 2018 1:37 pm

DirtyD64 wrote:
Houndfish wrote:What size shrink tubing are you using?

I am mostly a Straight Shank hook guy but use a lot of Offest Roundbend hooks for softer plastics when I want a a more secure hold on the plastic. Putting keepers on SS hooks is a great idea! I love the Owner Finesse Heavy Cover hooks but they are quite expensive.



You cut the shrink tubing at an angle, so after cutting one, you cut the second one straight across and have two barbs ready to go. Make sure that you apply a wipe or so of super glue before, just heating them makes mine always fall off.

I have done this a while with a variety of hooks, but primarily use the Gamakatsu Round Bend Straight Shanks with a custom barb for dropshotting. The shrink wrap must be very small, I think I use the 3/32 to 1/16 size. Not sure exactly what the size is, I think that is correct though, I know I bought the 3/16 size (smallest Home Depot had) once and it was too big even for flipping style hooks.

This thread is great to me, I had a very similar revelation. I was using EWG and offset round bends for Carolina rigging and it just wasn't working. Now for 90% TX rigging, ALL Carolina rigging, and a few other techniques I use straight shank medium or light wire hooks. Still prefer the Owner Downshot hooks for dropshots though because they have a great hookup ratio still, stay weedless and the bite of the hook is big enough to catch even on lighter bites.

I use the 1/16 shrink tubing for light wire (Downshot), 3/32 for most medium to heavy wire hooks , and the 1/8 for super heavy punching hooks. Electronic stores like Fry’s are good places to get the tubing because they sell each size separately in bulk, and it is cheaper. The Home Depot assorted pack of tubing is more expensive, and has big sizes that you probably won’t use for fishing.
The spliced shank hooks will hold the tubing well without super glue. As was said, a little glue is needed on the non-spliced shanks. I prefer the brush applicator for precision application. The hard jawbone and rough teeth of the largemouth tend to pull down the tubing on the non-spliced shanks, but a little glue will keep you from having to reheat them or retie
them after they have been pulled down by a fish. Don’t try to reheat the tubing when the hook is still tied to your line because your line will weaken from the heat.
Notice in my earlier photo that the barb on the tubing is bigger for the straight shank hooks. Your bigger and thicker worms will need more of a barb. The small soft worms (straight Roboworms) will get torn up if you use too large of a barb. The light wire Downshot hook in my picture has almost no barb for a reason.
The Owner Downshot hook is awesome for dropshotting for a couple of reasons. First, I fish a Texas rigged bait while dropshotting because I fish it quickly throwing mostly to cover and structure that requires a weedless rig. Second, you use your old school upward hook setting technique to get your bait through the plastic. You will rarely lose a fish once hooked with this style of a hookset while using the Downshot hook, and you will not have to change your hook setting technique when you switch to bigger Texas rigs with non-finesse tackle. Third, the Downshot hook puts the tail end of your worm higher on the dropshot rig than the straight shank hooks. I think the fish prefer this.
I fished a six tournament series when I first started using the Downshot hook in 2005. I relied on the dropshot rig a lot that year to the tune of 135 fish over the six tournaments. I missed only one fish, and lost only one small fish that I didn’t get a good hook set on, over the series. I have been fishing the Downshot hook ever since. The open rig dropshot hooks are hard to keep from spinning when rigged with your worm over the hook point and barb, and I lose a lot more fish with them.

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby DirtyD64 » Wed Jul 04, 2018 11:56 pm

toddmc wrote:
DirtyD64 wrote:
Houndfish wrote:What size shrink tubing are you using?

I am mostly a Straight Shank hook guy but use a lot of Offest Roundbend hooks for softer plastics when I want a a more secure hold on the plastic. Putting keepers on SS hooks is a great idea! I love the Owner Finesse Heavy Cover hooks but they are quite expensive.



You cut the shrink tubing at an angle, so after cutting one, you cut the second one straight across and have two barbs ready to go. Make sure that you apply a wipe or so of super glue before, just heating them makes mine always fall off.

I have done this a while with a variety of hooks, but primarily use the Gamakatsu Round Bend Straight Shanks with a custom barb for dropshotting. The shrink wrap must be very small, I think I use the 3/32 to 1/16 size. Not sure exactly what the size is, I think that is correct though, I know I bought the 3/16 size (smallest Home Depot had) once and it was too big even for flipping style hooks.

This thread is great to me, I had a very similar revelation. I was using EWG and offset round bends for Carolina rigging and it just wasn't working. Now for 90% TX rigging, ALL Carolina rigging, and a few other techniques I use straight shank medium or light wire hooks. Still prefer the Owner Downshot hooks for dropshots though because they have a great hookup ratio still, stay weedless and the bite of the hook is big enough to catch even on lighter bites.

I use the 1/16 shrink tubing for light wire (Downshot), 3/32 for most medium to heavy wire hooks , and the 1/8 for super heavy punching hooks. Electronic stores like Fry’s are good places to get the tubing because they sell each size separately in bulk, and it is cheaper. The Home Depot assorted pack of tubing is more expensive, and has big sizes that you probably won’t use for fishing.
The spliced shank hooks will hold the tubing well without super glue. As was said, a little glue is needed on the non-spliced shanks. I prefer the brush applicator for precision application. The hard jawbone and rough teeth of the largemouth tend to pull down the tubing on the non-spliced shanks, but a little glue will keep you from having to reheat them or retie
them after they have been pulled down by a fish. Don’t try to reheat the tubing when the hook is still tied to your line because your line will weaken from the heat.
Notice in my earlier photo that the barb on the tubing is bigger for the straight shank hooks. Your bigger and thicker worms will need more of a barb. The small soft worms (straight Roboworms) will get torn up if you use too large of a barb. The light wire Downshot hook in my picture has almost no barb for a reason.
The Owner Downshot hook is awesome for dropshotting for a couple of reasons. First, I fish a Texas rigged bait while dropshotting because I fish it quickly throwing mostly to cover and structure that requires a weedless rig. Second, you use your old school upward hook setting technique to get your bait through the plastic. You will rarely lose a fish once hooked with this style of a hookset while using the Downshot hook, and you will not have to change your hook setting technique when you switch to bigger Texas rigs with non-finesse tackle. Third, the Downshot hook puts the tail end of your worm higher on the dropshot rig than the straight shank hooks. I think the fish prefer this.
I fished a six tournament series when I first started using the Downshot hook in 2005. I relied on the dropshot rig a lot that year to the tune of 135 fish over the six tournaments. I missed only one fish, and lost only one small fish that I didn’t get a good hook set on, over the series. I have been fishing the Downshot hook ever since. The open rig dropshot hooks are hard to keep from spinning when rigged with your worm over the hook point and barb, and I lose a lot more fish with them.



I really like those Owner Downshot's too. Nice to know I found something that actual tournament fisherman use. I use the 1/0 for 4.5" Robo ST and Fat, the 2/0 sometimes for FAT 4.5" Robo's. Use the 2/0 for 6" Robo's, use the 3/0 for like 6" Gene Larew Tattetail worms (underrated worm). I recently have used the #1 for the 3" Keitech Shad Impact with much success. Not sure where I would find a lure for the #2 owner downshot though...

Secret dropshot rig of mine you should try:

Bite the tails off of a Hula Grub, where it looks like a micro Fat Ika, then on an Owner Downshot 1/0, TX rig it. Not backwards, leave the tails to where it mimmicks a small tube. Been a great Ned-Shot style lure for me...

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby toddmc » Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:18 pm

DirtyD64 wrote:
toddmc wrote:
DirtyD64 wrote:
Houndfish wrote:What size shrink tubing are you using?

I am mostly a Straight Shank hook guy but use a lot of Offest Roundbend hooks for softer plastics when I want a a more secure hold on the plastic. Putting keepers on SS hooks is a great idea! I love the Owner Finesse Heavy Cover hooks but they are quite expensive.



You cut the shrink tubing at an angle, so after cutting one, you cut the second one straight across and have two barbs ready to go. Make sure that you apply a wipe or so of super glue before, just heating them makes mine always fall off.

I have done this a while with a variety of hooks, but primarily use the Gamakatsu Round Bend Straight Shanks with a custom barb for dropshotting. The shrink wrap must be very small, I think I use the 3/32 to 1/16 size. Not sure exactly what the size is, I think that is correct though, I know I bought the 3/16 size (smallest Home Depot had) once and it was too big even for flipping style hooks.

This thread is great to me, I had a very similar revelation. I was using EWG and offset round bends for Carolina rigging and it just wasn't working. Now for 90% TX rigging, ALL Carolina rigging, and a few other techniques I use straight shank medium or light wire hooks. Still prefer the Owner Downshot hooks for dropshots though because they have a great hookup ratio still, stay weedless and the bite of the hook is big enough to catch even on lighter bites.

I use the 1/16 shrink tubing for light wire (Downshot), 3/32 for most medium to heavy wire hooks , and the 1/8 for super heavy punching hooks. Electronic stores like Fry’s are good places to get the tubing because they sell each size separately in bulk, and it is cheaper. The Home Depot assorted pack of tubing is more expensive, and has big sizes that you probably won’t use for fishing.
The spliced shank hooks will hold the tubing well without super glue. As was said, a little glue is needed on the non-spliced shanks. I prefer the brush applicator for precision application. The hard jawbone and rough teeth of the largemouth tend to pull down the tubing on the non-spliced shanks, but a little glue will keep you from having to reheat them or retie
them after they have been pulled down by a fish. Don’t try to reheat the tubing when the hook is still tied to your line because your line will weaken from the heat.
Notice in my earlier photo that the barb on the tubing is bigger for the straight shank hooks. Your bigger and thicker worms will need more of a barb. The small soft worms (straight Roboworms) will get torn up if you use too large of a barb. The light wire Downshot hook in my picture has almost no barb for a reason.
The Owner Downshot hook is awesome for dropshotting for a couple of reasons. First, I fish a Texas rigged bait while dropshotting because I fish it quickly throwing mostly to cover and structure that requires a weedless rig. Second, you use your old school upward hook setting technique to get your bait through the plastic. You will rarely lose a fish once hooked with this style of a hookset while using the Downshot hook, and you will not have to change your hook setting technique when you switch to bigger Texas rigs with non-finesse tackle. Third, the Downshot hook puts the tail end of your worm higher on the dropshot rig than the straight shank hooks. I think the fish prefer this.
I fished a six tournament series when I first started using the Downshot hook in 2005. I relied on the dropshot rig a lot that year to the tune of 135 fish over the six tournaments. I missed only one fish, and lost only one small fish that I didn’t get a good hook set on, over the series. I have been fishing the Downshot hook ever since. The open rig dropshot hooks are hard to keep from spinning when rigged with your worm over the hook point and barb, and I lose a lot more fish with them.



I really like those Owner Downshot's too. Nice to know I found something that actual tournament fisherman use. I use the 1/0 for 4.5" Robo ST and Fat, the 2/0 sometimes for FAT 4.5" Robo's. Use the 2/0 for 6" Robo's, use the 3/0 for like 6" Gene Larew Tattetail worms (underrated worm). I recently have used the #1 for the 3" Keitech Shad Impact with much success. Not sure where I would find a lure for the #2 owner downshot though...

Secret dropshot rig of mine you should try:

Bite the tails off of a Hula Grub, where it looks like a micro Fat Ika, then on an Owner Downshot 1/0, TX rig it. Not backwards, leave the tails to where it mimmicks a small tube. Been a great Ned-Shot style lure for me...

IMG_0347.JPG
IMG_0347.JPG (22.79 KiB) Viewed 548 times

The 3' Ika and 3" Mini Gitzit are a couple hard to get old baits that I have supplies of. I like to dropshot them around bluegill beds in the late spring. They are very close to the cropped Hula Grub.

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby DirtyD64 » Thu Jul 05, 2018 11:26 pm

toddmc wrote:
DirtyD64 wrote:
toddmc wrote:
DirtyD64 wrote:
Houndfish wrote:What size shrink tubing are you using?

I am mostly a Straight Shank hook guy but use a lot of Offest Roundbend hooks for softer plastics when I want a a more secure hold on the plastic. Putting keepers on SS hooks is a great idea! I love the Owner Finesse Heavy Cover hooks but they are quite expensive.



You cut the shrink tubing at an angle, so after cutting one, you cut the second one straight across and have two barbs ready to go. Make sure that you apply a wipe or so of super glue before, just heating them makes mine always fall off.

I have done this a while with a variety of hooks, but primarily use the Gamakatsu Round Bend Straight Shanks with a custom barb for dropshotting. The shrink wrap must be very small, I think I use the 3/32 to 1/16 size. Not sure exactly what the size is, I think that is correct though, I know I bought the 3/16 size (smallest Home Depot had) once and it was too big even for flipping style hooks.

This thread is great to me, I had a very similar revelation. I was using EWG and offset round bends for Carolina rigging and it just wasn't working. Now for 90% TX rigging, ALL Carolina rigging, and a few other techniques I use straight shank medium or light wire hooks. Still prefer the Owner Downshot hooks for dropshots though because they have a great hookup ratio still, stay weedless and the bite of the hook is big enough to catch even on lighter bites.

I use the 1/16 shrink tubing for light wire (Downshot), 3/32 for most medium to heavy wire hooks , and the 1/8 for super heavy punching hooks. Electronic stores like Fry’s are good places to get the tubing because they sell each size separately in bulk, and it is cheaper. The Home Depot assorted pack of tubing is more expensive, and has big sizes that you probably won’t use for fishing.
The spliced shank hooks will hold the tubing well without super glue. As was said, a little glue is needed on the non-spliced shanks. I prefer the brush applicator for precision application. The hard jawbone and rough teeth of the largemouth tend to pull down the tubing on the non-spliced shanks, but a little glue will keep you from having to reheat them or retie
them after they have been pulled down by a fish. Don’t try to reheat the tubing when the hook is still tied to your line because your line will weaken from the heat.
Notice in my earlier photo that the barb on the tubing is bigger for the straight shank hooks. Your bigger and thicker worms will need more of a barb. The small soft worms (straight Roboworms) will get torn up if you use too large of a barb. The light wire Downshot hook in my picture has almost no barb for a reason.
The Owner Downshot hook is awesome for dropshotting for a couple of reasons. First, I fish a Texas rigged bait while dropshotting because I fish it quickly throwing mostly to cover and structure that requires a weedless rig. Second, you use your old school upward hook setting technique to get your bait through the plastic. You will rarely lose a fish once hooked with this style of a hookset while using the Downshot hook, and you will not have to change your hook setting technique when you switch to bigger Texas rigs with non-finesse tackle. Third, the Downshot hook puts the tail end of your worm higher on the dropshot rig than the straight shank hooks. I think the fish prefer this.
I fished a six tournament series when I first started using the Downshot hook in 2005. I relied on the dropshot rig a lot that year to the tune of 135 fish over the six tournaments. I missed only one fish, and lost only one small fish that I didn’t get a good hook set on, over the series. I have been fishing the Downshot hook ever since. The open rig dropshot hooks are hard to keep from spinning when rigged with your worm over the hook point and barb, and I lose a lot more fish with them.



I really like those Owner Downshot's too. Nice to know I found something that actual tournament fisherman use. I use the 1/0 for 4.5" Robo ST and Fat, the 2/0 sometimes for FAT 4.5" Robo's. Use the 2/0 for 6" Robo's, use the 3/0 for like 6" Gene Larew Tattetail worms (underrated worm). I recently have used the #1 for the 3" Keitech Shad Impact with much success. Not sure where I would find a lure for the #2 owner downshot though...

Secret dropshot rig of mine you should try:

Bite the tails off of a Hula Grub, where it looks like a micro Fat Ika, then on an Owner Downshot 1/0, TX rig it. Not backwards, leave the tails to where it mimmicks a small tube. Been a great Ned-Shot style lure for me...

IMG_0347.JPG
The 3' Ika and 3" Mini Gitzit are a couple hard to get old baits that I have supplies of. I like to dropshot them around bluegill beds in the late spring. They are very close to the cropped Hula Grub.


Strike King makes some miniature tubes that work okay. I bought some Black Neon ones, had some Jackall Wacky Heads (discontinued, had a tiny #2 Owner hook and thin weedguard) stuffed them into the tube and somehow kept the weedguard in use for an amazing small bass/crappie lure. Ended up destroying Sauger with it though.

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby Cal » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:37 am

Interesting discussion with the custom hook keeper on hooks. Paycheck Baits used to sell their hooks with already cut shrink tubing for you to install on their hooks, but I suppose those days are gone. They're only selling a trolling motor gadget for cutting weeds now. The shrink tube certainly works and is quick to install.

Another option some of the more OCD anglers out here are doing is to use a length of bent wire, and then tying it around the hook shank like you're wrapping a guide on a fishing rod. The result looks something like the Gamakatsu Finesse Heavy Cover Hook only without the plastic coating... I suppose you can use shrink tubing for the same effect if you want:

Image

I'm lazy and in both cases just purchase hooks with the keeper already on there. The one that I'm actually liking the most and had to wait a long time for it to finally be available is the tin keeper on Gamakatsu's G-Finesse light wire worm hook... granted, these are all light wire/finesse type hooks I'm talking about and not the heavy cover, EWG stuff. Just thought I'd point them out is all.

Image
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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby big_gee » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:12 am

I have always use straight shank hooks for most of my T-rig applications. For T-rigs I use the Gamakatsu G-finesse heavy cover and I will use it on line from 10 to 15 lb. for my light wire stuff like Cal I use the new G-finesse light wire.

John Murray did a video of why he prefers a straight shank for his t-rigs and the main focus was the angle the hook penetrates and why it is more effective.

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Re: Reverting to Straight shank worm hooks

Postby toddmc » Fri Jul 06, 2018 4:31 pm

Cal wrote:Interesting discussion with the custom hook keeper on hooks. Paycheck Baits used to sell their hooks with already cut shrink tubing for you to install on their hooks, but I suppose those days are gone. They're only selling a trolling motor gadget for cutting weeds now. The shrink tube certainly works and is quick to install.

Another option some of the more OCD anglers out here are doing is to use a length of bent wire, and then tying it around the hook shank like you're wrapping a guide on a fishing rod. The result looks something like the Gamakatsu Finesse Heavy Cover Hook only without the plastic coating... I suppose you can use shrink tubing for the same effect if you want:

Image

I'm lazy and in both cases just purchase hooks with the keeper already on there. The one that I'm actually liking the most and had to wait a long time for it to finally be available is the tin keeper on Gamakatsu's G-Finesse light wire worm hook... granted, these are all light wire/finesse type hooks I'm talking about and not the heavy cover, EWG stuff. Just thought I'd point them out is all.
Image

There are a lot of amazing new hooks out there. The big problem for me is trying to find the time to try them all.
Aaron Martens put this video on youtube a long time ago. It's another way to get a bait keeper on a straight shank hook.
I still prefer the shrink tube because it can be done in a much shorter time period, and I don't feel like I've invested too much time in the process. I did four packs of Owners in about 15 minutes today.
Aaron will always do things the hard way if he thinks it has merit. The good thing is that his methods trickle down into Gamakatsu hooks. Those hooks that you posted look to be worth a try.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfsrn1sZA_Y


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