As an aside from rods, nylon, reels et al, what about a cost & quality of hooks thread? Falkus reckoned the Victorians made the best hooks due to the better quality of steel available then. True? Or false?
Hogwash!As an aside from rods, nylon, reels et al, what about a cost & quality of hooks thread? Falkus reckoned the Victorians made the best hooks due to the better quality of steel available then. True? Or false?
Funny you mention Grafham as I had a nymph hook straightened yesterday after a bizarre double hook up, snapped dropper, dragged through the weed type of scrap!I've been tying since the late 60s and since that time I have contrived to amass quite a substantial collection of hooks . . . one year I aim to return from the BFFI without adding to the collection.
At the outset I tied my Tom Ivens patterns on 'Veniard Wide Gape Trout', lures were tied on the Mustad 9872, there was, at the time, a very limited selection of hook patterns. I have various boxes of Mustad hooks and in comparison to what's available today they look Neolithic.
For most of my tying today I use Tiemco, Hanak, Hends, Daiichi and Varivas and I cannot fault the consistency of quality of any of them. I cannot recall the last time that I had any of these hooks, bend, distort or break in the vise or find a dodgy eye, rough shank or finish etc. In the 60s and 70s it wasn't frequent but it wasn't uncommon.
I fear that some of the current 'issues' with modern hooks is that a poor choice of hook is made for the task. These days, the fish we fish for are often larger, we quite often use heavier lines, often very dense, fast sinking lines, the hook needs to be up to the task. We have available to us very fine wired hooks, very well tempered and chemically sharpened but if you're looking to fish size 14 dry flies on Grafham you'd need a different hook from what you'd use to fish the same size fly on Dartmoor.