Hi fellow AMFisHers! This weeks AMFisH(Visit today: www.amfish.ca) fishing vlog is a very thorough video about how to sharpen the hooks on various styles of baits.
I have always said that no matter how sharp we think the bait hooks are we can always make them even sharper! These days right out of the package, baits come with some really sharp hooks, but using a hook file to make the points sticky sharp is the key to many fish being landed due to an amazing hook up ratio!
A hook file like the one I use in this video does not cost much at all, between $4 and $6 at most fishing stores. These files will last a long time and do a great job at getting extremely sharp hook points, so by far this is the #1 tool to use for this.
I shot this video that I had on my list of vlogs, as I have been asked many times how often to sharpen hooks and what to use, so that is the reason why I go over everything in this video in such depth so it is as clear as possible for everyone out there still learning.
Key thing before sharpening any bait hook is to observe the hook itself, making sure that you see how the hook shape is to prevent any damages to it. Most hooks are round so they are quite easy to sharpen by running the file along each side about 3 to 5 times or as needed to reach the optimum sharpness and hook point. I also include a few level off pushes with the file across the top center portion of the hook.
When sharpening any hook you will also want to push the file towards the point of the hook as this seems to be the easiest way to prevent hook point damage that can be caused doing it in the other direction. Following how the hook is structured is by far the most critical component to a sharp hook, as you do not want to change any portions of the hook design by running the file along areas it should not be grinding.
The term I used above about getting to really sharp hooks that are sticky, basically means that when you run a hook across the surface of your hand the point should stick along the way. This is what the term sticky hooks means, a hook that is so sharp it has stick points along the area it is being dragged on.
Sticky hooks means easier fast penetration into the fish, resulting in more fish staying hook on your line! It does not take long to sharpen bait hooks so time should be dedicated to examining them and sharpening them several times per day, especially if you bait has been in contact with the lake bottom or structure. If you have also lost fish that have come free that can be a sign that your hooks are in need of a good few second sharpening.
When it comes to the barb on the hook I rarely do much sharpening on it, as it is usually very small on most hook and you don’t want to file it right down, but can if you are fishing in barbless hook lakes. On larger bait hooks you can touch up the barb slightly with a couple of pushes of the file, as the material on that larger barb will be significantly more and allows for some filing.
I got myself a few of these hook files and always make sure I have one in my pocket where it is very handy and I can touch hooks up quickly. If you do not have it easily accessible you will probably not focus on sharpening and that can potentially cost you a fish of a lifetime, so make sure to sharpen those hooks on every outing.
If you are like myself where you have all the baits you are going to use on an outing ready on a work space, it’s good practice to sharpen all those baits at once before you start your outing, as they will be ready to go the second you need them. When you are switching out baits is also a good time to sharpen those hooks so the bait is once again ready to be used quickly should you decided to use it again that day.
Sharpening hooks take almost no time at all so it should be put on the priority list for every outing. Grab yourself a few hook files and put the time into creating those sticky hooks, trust me they will serve you well!
Hope you found this video and post helpful.
The AMFisH guy…
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