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Discussion Starter #1
While the smaller sizes,#4`s and #2 work fine on tube flies I find that the larger heavier 2/0 and 3/0 stainless hooks are just too big for tubes.So I have been developing winter fly patterns for these biggies.
My best results to date have been a combination zonker spey hackled fly. I have tried rabbit,seal, and muskrat fur strips to give me a range of textures and colours. I find that the rabbit in narrow tapered strips gives the best action in the water I fish.
I tie in a short strip of rabbit about half way down the shank which extends about 3/4"behind the bend;Then I take two turns of the strip around the shank forcing the hair back as I wind. Then I tie in a blood marabou feather by the butt and take 1 or 2 turns .If I am using two different colours of marabo I take only one turn of each .
Patterns range from chartreuse and black, all black,orange and black,and winter hope.
I as necessary add,a large bead head,or a corkie head for bottom bouncing or when the fish are real stiff spawnsack eyes
While I am satisfied with these patterns I would be interested in what flies others are using on short shank heavy barbless hooks.
 

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Forgive me if I have missed your point LA, but are you starting from the point of view of the hook size and then developing the pattern to fit? Surely the logical way round is to decide the overall size and pattern of fly you wish to tie and then work out what hook size (or tube size) you need to best carry that dressing.

We of course have the option of using trebles in Europe, in which case I wouldn't go larger than a #4 Partridge outpoint, even on a 3" brass tube (haven't used one of those for years, but they're still there in the box!). I've seen plenty of big atlantic salmon landed on these hooks, including a number over 40lbs (when guiding in Norway some years ago), and they will hold a big fish in heavy water without problems. But if restricted to a single I would have thought that a 1/0 carp hook would do the trick - I have some nice 'Jack Hilton' short-shank nickle 1/0s from Partridge that would work fine on the largest tubes. Maybe also the 'Loop' doubles in a size 2 if that's permitted where you fish. If you are happy with tubes or waddingtons, I would always suggest choosing one of these rather than a conventional hook for patterns over about 11/4".

As has been said on the 'casting 100' ' thread, a fine wire hook will often hold a fish better because they generally penetrate right to the bend. It's really only hooks that just go in over the barb that open up - and as has been said, the leverage on a properly bedded-in short shank hook is minimal. Can't help thinking the damage to a fish from a heavy hook is likely to be greater, too. I'm not sure why you would ever feel the need to use a 2/0 or larger these days. Or have I misunderstood your question?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi Gardiner: Many thanks for your imput. We have several restrictions which must be overcome.We are only allowed a single point,and the hook must be barbless. I also want a fly which can be fished from a shooting head and the same fly to be fished from mono with a float from a centerpin.
We have two kinds of fish here ,those that lie behind rocks,and those that lie in slots or seams.
Both thse types fish better with the float and centerpin because you can feed your float directly down the seam,and you can hold your fly in the pocket behind a rock better with a float and mono.
However when the fish are lyng in broad tailouts then a waked fly or a sunken fly on a shooting head is better .
My solution is to fish with the centerpin which allows me to switch from shooting head to float at a moments notice.
This is not general practise but its the way I prefer to fish.
 

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Thanks for the clarification, LA. I guessed you were restricted to single hooks, but am glad to have it confirmed. However, since you mentioned in your original post that you use tubes, I still don't understand why you want to use these meathooks as well. As I said, I think a 1/0 fairly fine wire short shank single would be suitable for the largest tube and will land you more fish than a big iron. Or is there a problem with fishing tubes below a float? Sorry, but I'm not familiar with the technique.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hi Gardiner: My use of a centrpin reel is merely a personal idiosincracy however I regard it as a useful one. It allows me to use virtually any fly rod while allowing me to fish either flies lures or bait .
Our pacific salmon are less willing to take flies than either Atlantics or steelhead .Coho and Pinks will take a fly but Chinook,Chum and Sockeye are less receptive.
All of these fish tend to lie in slack water within a much faster overall stream. They make great use of slots, and seams of slow water near undercut banks but usually lie right at the junction of the slow and fast water. They also make maximum use of eddys behing large boulders or boulder clusters.
It is much more effective to fish these situations with a float and centerpin. The light mono between the float and the rod tip can be held entirely in the air eliminating drag and the frictionless feed of line from the centerpin allows the fly to remain in the seam or backeddy.
While one could fish tube flies from this setup the fact that it is not possible to give the fly action and life means that the action must be built into the fly itself I find that long fur bodies together with marabou collars seem to give this action. However such a fly does not lend itself well to tubes although it could be tied on Waddingtons.
Because our rivers have fast currents ,broken water,and a bouldery bottoms lighter wire suffers from these conditions ..and because we find it necessary to fish right down on the rocks we therefore tend to use heavier iron. If we could use short stiff triples which were the preferred hook for centerpin fishing it would be ideal but the powers that be ,to facilitate catch and release have ruled against all typed of multiple hooks.
I could of course stick exclusively to conventional fly tackle but heavy fishing pressure with most fishing gear or bait are too incompatible with normal flyfishing.
So I must resort to a setup which allowsme to fish either way with a minimum amount of time changing systems.
 
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