Walmart FLW Tour pro Clent Davis believes many anglers use hooks that are bigger than necessary, whether it’s a treble hook on a reaction bait, a jighead on a swimbait or a worm hook for heavy cover.
“People think they need to use the biggest hook they can, but it usually just messes with the action of your bait,” Davis explains.
How to Improve: Downsize, use caution when replacing stock hooks
“A lot of guys have giant 5/0 hooks on their jigheads with swimbaits, but by going down to a 3/0 you will get much more action out of your swimbait,” Davis says, adding that the exact size depends on the size of the swimbait, and experimentation is still the best way to settle on just the right hook.
“Those big punch hooks are usually too big for the baits,” he adds. “While most people think they will get a better hookup with a bigger hook, I think it’s the opposite. A smaller hook will penetrate more easily, and the fish won’t get as much leverage to throw the hook if you have a smaller hook.”
Anglers who like to swap hooks on reaction baits like crankbaits and jerkbaits should also be careful.
“The trend is to replace all the stock hooks, but a lot of times people add hooks that are too big or thicker hooks, and the added weight just changes the action of the bait,” says Davis.
His advice is to use the same size, style and gauge of hook as the factory hooks, should you decide to replace them.