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  1. #1
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    Sep 2013
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    Default What hook sizes to start with?

    Brand new to fly tying. I purchased a used kit on ebay. Doesn't include any hooks so I am ordering some from Allen's. Initially I intend to tie for small stream trout and panfish. I was thinking I would get nymph/streamer hooks in 8-10-12, dry hooks in 16 to 24. Any other sizes I will likely be needing soon? I realize it depends on what I want to tie. Woolies, scuds, wet flies, terrestrials for sure. I haven't really used dry flies yet but intend to soon.

    I realize you could type for days about fly hook options. I'll read some recipes on this forum and perhaps that will answer some of my questions for myself.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: What hook sizes to start with?

    Save this link, it will save you a lot of time looking at recipes. I tend to tie on Dai-Riki or umpqua and a lot of recipes use tiemco hooks as the deFacto. Eventually you'll get the hang of a scud hook, Emerger , nymph ,dry etc etc but this helped me when starting.


    Dai-Riki Hook Comparison Chart

    I can't comment as to what you should buy because I tend to only fish here in Colorado.

    I use a ton of Dai Riki 135 in 14,18,20,22
    Dai Riki 125 18,20,22
    "The fish you're gonna find up here, you're gonna find; Rainbow,Cuttbow,CuttBrowns,Brownbows,RainBrowns,
    CuttyRainbrowns, Pike ,Perch"

    "Snap it" Hank Patterson

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  4. #3

    Default Re: What hook sizes to start with?

    Those might be the right sizes for fishing but if you are brand new to tying 16's will be a real challenge and 24's a nightmare. Start with the larger sizes you listed and learn to tie then tie smaller and more complex patterns.
    - William

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  6. #4
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    Default Re: What hook sizes to start with?

    Quote Originally Posted by williamhj View Post
    Those might be the right sizes for fishing but if you are brand new to tying 16's will be a real challenge and 24's a nightmare. Start with the larger sizes you listed and learn to tie then tie smaller and more complex patterns.
    I think I will heed that advice. There are plenty of patterns 10-14 that will catch fish here. The small dry flies are really not that expensive to buy for now.

    And thanks for the hook chart link. That will be handy.

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  8. #5
    Join Date
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    Wink Re: What hook sizes to start with?

    Quote Originally Posted by williamhj View Post
    Those might be the right sizes for fishing but if you are brand new to tying 16's will be a real challenge and 24's a nightmare. Start with the larger sizes you listed and learn to tie then tie smaller and more complex patterns.
    +1 here. Practice with larger hooks until you get 'comfie' with the vise. You'll soon find that the word 'vise' is spelled 'vice.'
    When wealth is lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, something is lost; when character is lost, all is lost. - Billy Graham"

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  10. #6
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    Default Re: What hook sizes to start with?

    Quote Originally Posted by fredaevans View Post
    +1 here. Practice with larger hooks until you get 'comfie' with the vise. You'll soon find that the word 'vise' is spelled 'vice.'
    Ignore the old man! Tying your own flies is the very height of virtue. After all, you save tons of money right?

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  12. #7
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    Default Re: What hook sizes to start with?

    Quote Originally Posted by fq13 View Post
    Ignore the old man! Tying your own flies is the very height of virtue. After all, you save tons of money right?
    I'm gonna save a fortune! For sure...... as long as you figure I will lose 6+ flies per day (yes this does include the days I don't actually fish). I may have to use the vacuum cleaner lint for dubbing. If the budget gets real tight, don't forget I drive by no less than 3 road killed deer, raccoon or squirrel on the way to work most every day.

  13. #8
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    Default Re: What hook sizes to start with?

    Quote Originally Posted by ia_trouter View Post
    I'm gonna save a fortune! For sure...... as long as you figure I will lose 6+ flies per day (yes this does include the days I don't actually fish). I may have to use the vacuum cleaner lint for dubbing. If the budget gets real tight, don't forget I drive by no less than 3 road killed deer, raccoon or squirrel on the way to work most every day.
    This man knows 'Where from He Speaks.' An old Yellow Lab and I can pick up enough hair every day to tie a years supply of dubbed flies. Just went to look for Sandy (we're both out of our skulls with boardum) and he's 're-aranged' our bed again. Everything is just a huge pile in the middle.

    AGAIN! (Yesterday)
    When wealth is lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, something is lost; when character is lost, all is lost. - Billy Graham"

  14. #9
    Join Date
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    Default Re: What hook sizes to start with?

    If you are just starting out with tying, start with

    Woolly buggers on #8 3x-4x long streamer hook
    and
    Pheasant Tail Nymphs and Hare's Ear Nymphs 0n #12 1x long or standard wet fly/nymph hooks. (Learn to tie them and then learn to tie them with a bead head.)

    Once you get them down, go down a size.

    Big things to watch out for is consistency and proportions. Don't be afraid to throw a half hitch or two on after each step. It helps a lot until you get a good grasp of maintaining thread tension. (Try to stay away from dries for a while. They are more complicated and require more expensive materials.)

    Get the simple basics down, then go for something one step more complex.
    Woolly Bugger
    PTN & GRHE
    Partridge and Orange (or any other floss body soft hackle)
    I'm currently out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message, and if you would like to reach me by phone, please hang up now.

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