Daiichi 1120 Curved Hooks Heavy Wide-Gape Scud Hook Reviews

Daiichi 1120 Curved Hooks Heavy Wide-Gape Scud Hook

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The Daiichi 1120 Fly Tying Hook - My Faith Has Grown

Jan 18, 2010 (Updated Jan 18, 2010)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Excellent steel; Available in cost effective 1,000-packs

Cons:Can require a slight adjustment in tying style for certain patterns

The Bottom Line: A solid offering in this hook style.  While it may not be my first choice, it has become a very close second.


Due to a lack of options locally, a couple of years ago, I was compelled to try Daiichi brand (not to be confused with Dai-Riki) fly tying hooks.  The Daiichi 1120 is a style of hook most commonly referred to as a scud/shrimp/caddis pupa hook and, frankly, since it is hard to make a bad hook of this type, I decided to utilize this model for my first timorous use in this brand.  Put simply, while the Tiemco equivalents remain my ultimate choice, I have become something of a convert to Daiichi hooks for a variety of patterns.

I guess that kind of hints at the success I met with in using the 1120...

Daiichi and the 1120

Do NOT confuse Daiichi with the much lower quality, made in Korea, Dai-Riki brand hooks.  Daiichi hooks are made in Japan and are distributed by Angler Sport Group.  It is generally, though not universally, conceded that Daiichi uses a better grade of steel and processing than most of the competition.  That does not mean that it is, ultimately, the "best" choice of design for a particular model (more on that in a minute).  It just provides a solid base.

Daiichi hooks are chemically sharpened with a bronze finish and a "low profile" (something between a ‘micro' and ‘standard') barb.  While their numbering system can be a trifle confusing for those accustomed to Mustad or Tiemco (TMC) hooks, in the case of the 1120 represents their equivalent to the TMC 2457 (in theory, the Daiichi 1130 would be comparable to the TMC 2487).  In actuality, I think it is more accurately compared to the Dai-Riki #135 and Mustad 80250.   (The Mustad C49S  would be more closely akin to the Daiichi 1150.)
   
Why?

The Daiichi 1120 is described as: 2X Heavy Wire, 1X Short Shank, Continuous Bend, Down-Eye.   While most hook companies now have a ‘scud' hook of similar design, the Dai-Riki, Mustad, Daiichi, and Eagle Claw hooks all have a slightly offset hook point that neither the TMC 2457 or TMC 2487 possess.  Although the 1120 is listed as having "2X Heavy Wire," so is the Tiemco 2457. What Daiichi claims on their website is that the 1120 was developed "as a response to feedback received from flyfishers who need tougher hooks for heavy powerful fish, like steelhead, and those who want heavier wire to aid the sinking speed of their subsurface flies.
  
What they don't tell you is that, in simplistic terms, there are ‘light,' ‘standard,' and ‘heavy' wire hooks.  ‘Standard' is just that - the average standard or benchmark.  Wire that is ‘lighter' or ‘heavier' in terms of weight/diameter of the shank is designated by a number "X" either side of this standard.  Unfortunately, there is some variance throughout the industry as to ‘standard.'  Though this variance is often very slight, it usually means that the concept of ‘heavy,' etc. must be taken in the context of the individual company's products and not considered as an absolute measure when comparing one brand to another.  As a result, the Daiichi 1120 actually falls between the TMC 2457 and TMC 2487 in terms of weight/diameter; but, due to the superior steel, it is at least as strong as the 2457.

This slightly smaller diameter contributes to the 1120 to being offered in sizes 6 - 22; whereas the TMC 2457 is only offered in sizes 6 - 18.  Another factor is the offset hook point.   When combined with the ‘wide hook gap(e)' inherent in the design, this offset mitigates the ‘short shank' (1120 = 1X short, 2457 = 2X short) and down-eye configuration in terms of any interference with hook set; a critical factor influencing effectiveness in the smaller sizes. 
  
Used For What Flies?

A very short list of patterns the Daiichi 1120 can be used for would include:

Burk's H.B.I.; the Brassie; Mercer's Z-Wing Caddis Pupa; various chironomid imitations; the San Juan Worm; Dave Engerbretson's Damsel nymph; and even Glo-Bugs

What about ‘scuds?'  Yes.  Many scud/shrimp patterns can be tied on this style of hook.  In fact, many are.  The problem is that the real creatures are relatively straight when swimming; curling protectively when in the hand or out of the water.  Thus, while this hook style may emulate a dying scud, it doesn't necessarily provide an accurate impression of a live one as it naturally moves through the water.  While you can tie a relatively straight-ish scud pattern on this style of hook, there are better options.

Oh well.  It's an old debate and one which won't be settled here.

Something to recognize when speaking of which patterns are/can be tied on this hook is that offset hook point.  This offset puts a bit of a ‘twist' in the hook shank.  This twist can impact how well materials tie to the shank; not to mention the impact on the fly's appearance as a result.  The slightly thinner wire diameter can also result in similar issues.  Put simply, if you've been tying a pattern on a TMC 2457 for ‘years,' it might have to be tweaked a bit for the Daiichi 1120 in terms of "looking right."

Likewise, the thinner diameter/weight may mean the hook doesn't sink as quickly as the TMC 2457.  This can be a ‘good' thing.  It can also be a potential problem for those who want to "go deep fast."  (Although, I would suggest your ‘answer' lies more with weight, beads, split shot, line type or even a different hook style than an ever-so-slightly thicker hook shank diameter.) 

These two factors are what led me to state in the beginning that the Tiemco equivalent (2457) remains my ultimate choice.  I still prefer the 2457 for most of my caddis pupae imitations.  San Juan Worms will depend on the size.  I think Engerbretson's Damsel nymph looks better on the 1120.  I prefer the additional strength of the 1120 to the 2487 for Burk's H.B.I.; but, the smaller diameter allows me to maintain the ‘delicacy' required of the pattern that isn't quite attainable with the 2457.

Get the idea? 
 
Final Thoughts

In the 25 and 100 packs, the Daiichi is a bit more expensive than the Dai-Riki and about the same as the Tiemco.  The trouble is that prices now vary widely depending on your source.  As a rule of thumb, the Angler Sport Group currently lists MSRP as $5.25 for the 25-pack and $18.50 for the 100-pack.  Unlike Tiemco, Daiichi also offers a 1,000-pack (ten 100-pack boxes) which can bring the cost-per-hook down considerably.  Unfortunately, there is no "MSRP" for this, making it dependent on the retailer as to how they wish to "work with you."
 
For example: If you're tying for a local shop, 1,000-packs may be necessary for you to help ‘fill the bins;' thus, they may be prone to working with the price as it benefits them.  On the other hand, if you're walking in as someone "off the street" who doesn't want the 25 and 100 packs the shop stocks, thereby, creating a "special order" - the price may reflect the extra effort it takes to make that available to you.  Also bear in mind that the lack of MSRP is also reflective of the fact that the 1,000 packs are not always available; they may be listed in the catalog, but they may not be available to ship depending on supply. 

As a result of these factors, I hesitate to even proffer a "ball park" range on the pricing of the 1,000 packs.

Maybe I'm not exactly a wholesale ‘convert' given that the Tiemco 2457 remains my ‘confidence' hook of choice.  But, I have found myself tying and fishing more and more with the Daiichi 1120.   Given that the proof is in the catching, what I will say is that ‘faith' is growing stronger.

Other Fly Tying Hooks Reviewed

Dai-Riki 135; Dai-Riki 270; Mustad 94840; Mustad 9671; Mustad 9672; TMC 100; TMC 200R; TMC 2457; TMC 3761; TMC 5262; TMC 5263   


Recommend this product? Yes


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