“amazing speed of penetration…precision tooled…chemically sharpened…hardened and tempered…finest high carbon steel…” Daiichi…Kamasan…Mustad…Tiemco (TMC)…Dia-Rikki…Partridge…Gamakatsu….Varivas…Knapeks…Hanak…Dohiku
If you don’t tie flies, you walk into a shop or order on line and buy a fly based on appearance, appeal or perhaps/hopefully based upon its suitability to match some part of an insects life. You don’t know the hook it is tied on. You may notice the shape of the fly is dictated by the hook’s shape (curved shank v. straight shank). For the most part, you buy the fly and think little about the hook again beyond barbing the hook.
If you tie, you stand in a shop and select hooks or again order on line. The array of brands can be daunting. Most shops limit the selection to three, maybe four choices of brands, each brand offering all the sizes. Which brand to choose? Choose several. Compare the out of the box quality, appearance, and price. A shop owner or guide will recommend hooks. Buy what you can afford and splurge on the more expensive hooks for a special or favorite pattern or two. Cheaper hooks/bargains will often rust in your fly case after you put the fly away.
As your tying progresses, you will settle on favorite styles of hooks that make flies look just right and when coupled with hook ups, there is reinforcement that the hook is great. Probably most hooks will work, but like all food has calories, I prefer to enjoy gaining my calories via certain foods, not just any food. Does that make sense?
My personal favorites: Dry Fly: TMC 100, TMC 102Y Nymphs: TMC 2302, Mustad 3906 B Pupa Hooks: Daiichi 1120, 1130 Wet Fly: Daiichi 1310, 1530 Shape, gape size, shank bend, wire size, finish all factor into my decisions. Price? I don’t tie mass quantities. If you do, ask the shop owner how to order larger quantities or research on line. If you progress to a production tier level, you will most likely know how to arrange such purchases.
Saltwater, Salmon, Steelhead, Bass hooks are yet another assortment, with additional brands and components thrown in. Fly tying and fishing has so many areas to study and have fun learning about.