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Hooklength choice??

Tony Stone

Senior Member
How do you begin to choose what hooklength choice is right?
By that I mean hooklength material - Mono, flouro, braid, coated braid?

I never seem to know what to use, I have tried all of them but as my catch rate is so low I’m always unsure what to change.

I’m fishing the Thames and Hampshire Avon if that helps.
 

Richard Isaacs

Senior Member & Supporter
How do you begin to choose what hooklength choice is right?
By that I mean hooklength material - Mono, flouro, braid, coated braid?

I never seem to know what to use, I have tried all of them but as my catch rate is so low I’m always unsure what to change.

I’m fishing the Thames and Hampshire Avon if that helps.
I’d definitely say the two rivers you fish are probably contributing a lot more to the low catch rate over your hook length material. Hard waters to tackle.
I use a coated braid but honestly I can’t see that information helping you in anyway. Get yourself booked on the middle Trent or river Wye for a couple days to get a confidence boost in your end tackle
 

Tony Stone

Senior Member
Definately the choice of waters have impacted my catch rate, I just find it hard to settle on which hooklength material I should be using.

confidence boost sounds good, I did the same when I was carp fishing and went to a runs water to get some confidence in my rigs.
didnt realise such waters existed for Barbel, but I definately need some of that!!!!
 

Richard Isaacs

Senior Member & Supporter
Definately the choice of waters have impacted my catch rate, I just find it hard to settle on which hooklength material I should be using.

confidence boost sounds good, I did the same when I was carp fishing and went to a runs water to get some confidence in my rigs.
didnt realise such waters existed for Barbel, but I definately need some of that!!!!
You can blank anywhere but some waters offer a much better chance of success than others.
I’d check out some of the day ticket stretches on the middle Trent, maybe a day at Collingham on the tidal or a trip to the Wye or middle Severn, Yorkshire Ouse etc.
all these have potential to get you afew fish on the bank and perhaps put your confidence back into your rigs and give you some thoughts on how best to tackle your harder waters.
 

Graham Elliott

Senior Member & Supporter
I use powerpro super slick in brown. Never let's me down. 20lb for the Thames...But its a hard river where 10pm to 2am seems to be a fairly key time. Fished it for many years.

But the advice to try other more prolific areas is well made.

What area of the Thames are you fishing?
 

Tony Stone

Senior Member
I use powerpro super slick in brown. Never let's me down. 20lb for the Thames...But its a hard river where 10pm to 2am seems to be a fairly key time. Fished it for many years.

But the advice to try other more prolific areas is well made.

What area of the Thames are you fishing

Lower Thames, mainly between Hampton court and staines.
 

Nick Horton

Senior Member & Supporter
It depends on what you think your catchrate should be. Are you struggling while others aren't? The advice on a break and fish elsewhere makes sense. I use Berkley XL Flourocarbon.
 

Tony Stone

Senior Member
There are certainly fish being caught from the areas I’m fishing, but it’s all very hush hush and no one really talks about their captures so it’s difficult to know true numbers caught
It depends on what you think your catchrate should be. Are you struggling while others aren't? The advice on a break and fish elsewhere makes sense. I use Berkley XL Flourocarbon.
 

Nick Horton

Senior Member & Supporter
There are certainly fish being caught from the areas I’m fishing, but it’s all very hush hush and no one really talks about their captures so it’s difficult to know true numbers caught
It could also be bait choice, location etc, hooklink may not be relevant. A visit to somewhere easier to get your confidence up may be the way forward. A chat with another angler maybe?
 

Tony Stone

Senior Member
It could be a lot of things, but my original question was how do you choose what hooklength material to use?

For example, when would you choose mono over braid. Or coated braid over fluoro?
 

Paul Richardson

Senior Member & Supporter
It could be a lot of things, but my original question was how do you choose what hooklength material to use?

For example, when would you choose mono over braid. Or coated braid over fluoro?
I think you’ll get lots of replies, all relevant in their own right but no definitive rights or wrongs
I have used all of the above and out of habit still do
Currently I’m using 9.8lb mono on 3’ hooklengths and it works on open water using less powerful rods
If I’m fishing short hooklinks tight to snags I’ll up to 15lb fluoro
Combi rigs are great and I tend to use them when there’s a bit of water in with bigger feeders and pva socks
Would Fluoro or mono work as effectively? -most probably
But not a lot of logic tbh, simply it’s worked in the past and it feels right- it’s a confidence thing with a bit of superstition thrown in for good measure
Once you get a few it will probably become irrelevant
 

Richard Dawson

Senior Member
I tend to use Fluoro if low and clear, Drennan Supplex usually.


Night fishing i'll go with a coated braid of which my choice is Avid Carp Captive Coated Hooklink, it's the most supple by far that i've found and strips really easily.


That being said i've caught on the coated braid when it's low and clear, so it's whatever gives you confidence really.
 

Neil Smart

Senior Member
Barbel are eager feeders and perhaps the choice of hooklength is not the issue when fishing low stocked rivers. I have used every interpretation of hooklengths out there, and they all have different characteristics, what I understand is that the successful anglers that have been catching for a number of years chose flouro, reason being for its ability to be virtually invisible. But is that the reason? Or is it something simpler like Barbel being spooked by something they can't see, IF Barbel were that fussy we would never use a feeder lead or bait dropper, for me the most critical thing is to get the fish feeding confidently, keep recast to a minimum, and of course location.
I reckon mono hooklength is as effective as any other material, but personally I use flouro. I remember the question what hooklength do you use at BS meeting a few years back, and all the assembled Barbel nobility said flouro.
Because I guess that's what they use, without any evidence that it is better, but they feel confident using it.
And that's the rub
 

Terry Simner

Senior Member & Supporter
I remember the question what hooklength do you use at BS meeting a few years back, and all the assembled Barbel nobility said flouro.
....and I guess many/most of the better/larger fish which those "babel nobility' catch are caught after dark. And that being the case, how might the 'invisibility' of fluoro be of any advantage? I'd have thought using fluoro (which is generally stiffer than other lines) at night is the worse of all worlds : are they using a line for its invisibility ...when it's already pitch black on the river bed?
It does sink well, but personally I'd never use it for its 'invisibility'.
 

Paul Richardson

Senior Member & Supporter
Barbel are eager feeders and perhaps the choice of hooklength is not the issue when fishing low stocked rivers. I have used every interpretation of hooklengths out there, and they all have different characteristics, what I understand is that the successful anglers that have been catching for a number of years chose flouro, reason being for its ability to be virtually invisible. But is that the reason? Or is it something simpler like Barbel being spooked by something they can't see, IF Barbel were that fussy we would never use a feeder lead or bait dropper, for me the most critical thing is to get the fish feeding confidently, keep recast to a minimum, and of course location.
I reckon mono hooklength is as effective as any other material, but personally I use flouro. I remember the question what hooklength do you use at BS meeting a few years back, and all the assembled Barbel nobility said flouro.
Because I guess that's what they use, without any evidence that it is better, but they feel confident using it.
And that's the rub
I use Fluoro cos it's supposed to sink like a brick and I do believe it's more abrasion resistant if there is a likelihood that I will have a fish go into willow roots. And of course it is less visible but as I'm only using short hooklengths < 12" I.m not sure how relevant that is
Push comes to shove if I was restricted to just one hooklink material for barbel fishing it would be mono, but I wouldn't feel too handicapped if it was fluoro or coated braid. You are right, so many other factors to get right - you can only catch what's in front of you
 
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