Changing & Upgrading Saltwater Hooks


Hooks are some of the most basic yet critical components of any fishing system, so it pays to inspect them often. In fact, it’s a wise idea to check your hooks before each trip, as well as throughout the day, to make sure they’re razor-sharp and in good condition (click here for a video on how to sharpen a hook). This is especially important if you fish rocky areas. If the hooks are even slightly rusty or bent, it’s a good idea to replace them.

In this video, Capt. Terry Nugent of Riptide Charters demonstrates how he quickly and effectively removes old hooks from his lures and replaces them with new ones. He does this routinely to make sure he always has the sharpest hooks available, or the right hooks for the species or size of fish he’s targeting. For example, when fishing for 200-plus-pound bluefins, he may need to remove the factory-rigged treble hooks from his lures and replace them with beefy single hooks. If fishing for bass, he may downsize to thinner singles or small trebles.

As you’ll see in the video, the right split-ring pliers can also make the task of changing hooks a lot easier, so invest in a large, corrosion-proof set featuring spring-loaded jaws.