Raspberryfisher's Blog

notes on fishing & travel

Dry Fly Hooks Sizes

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Return to an old theme, manufacturer’s hook sizes are really useless.  What you need to know, one you select your hook, is how long is the body. I publish my reference for nymphs six years ago, but not for the dry fly. Given I an updating my dry fly hook standard to the TMC 103BL, so I thought it was time to publish my standard with the associated body length.

  • TMC 103BL – Size 11 – 10.3mm
  • TMC 103BL – Size 13 – 9.1mm
  • TMC 103BL – Size 15 – 8.4mm
  • TMC 103BL – Size 17 – 7.2mm
  • TMC 103BL – Size 19 – 5.7mm

If I am looking for smaller, for small BWO or Tricos, where I am also thinking about an extended body, I move to the Daiichi 1640 with the Straight Eye.

  • Daiichi 1640 – Size 16 – 5.0mm
  • Daiichi 1640 – Size 18 – 4.5mm
  • Daiichi 1640 – Size 20 – 3.8mm

The body length is define as the from eye (last wrap of thread) to the point where the shank has dropped ~0.66 diameter of the wire. I am not using an optical tool, but measurement by hand with old eyes of one hook with a nice machinist vernier. As such, I would predict the margin of error is about 3%.  (Yes, I am an engineer)

So as illustrated below, yes, I identify the hook, but I look and select the hook by the intended body size.

H2 IMG_1667

H2 IMG_1668

And what happens to the hooks that fall out of favour (or samples to try). I either:

  • Put in a bag in a slot that corresponds to its equivalent. When I tied in the size, I will decide if I will use them up.
  • Occasionally sell them or give them away.  This idea of Pay it forward seems like a new way to pass on good karma..

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Written by raspberryfisher

2015/08/18 at 23:48

Posted in Dry Flies, Fly-Tying

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