Bead or not to bead


(Peder) #41

@gressak is correct. I’ve been using their hooks since they were introduced to years ago and they’re great. I also did a pre-order of their best. I have a few different colors: black, olive, dark olive, mounds (dark brown), almond Joy (light brown), pink, bright red, and Caddis green.

These are tungsten, hence the reason they’re slightly more expensive. I only got them this past autumn, in fact only a couple of days before Gressak and I went fishing. The two colors I’ve used were the pink and bright red and we’re both very productive.

I basically fish three styles of flies: soft hackle (think North Country spiders or soft hackle kebari), traditional Japanese style stiff hackle kebari, and bead-head nymphs. The first and last are what I was taught when I learned western style fly fishing. The second I learned about when I learned about tenkara and for my style. These beads go along that vein. They are high quality and very effective. They sink well for their size, are durable and colorfast. One thing I really like is they are a matte finish.

One thing I’ve not ever really liked about other beads is they’re so shiny. The insects I collect stream-side are never that shiny. I like these and hope you do too.


(David Walker) #42

Thanks for the observations Peder. Maybe I will get off the fence and order a few of them, and try them.

Years ago Chris (tenkarabum) made a blog post about being at one of then tenkara summits, and caught more fish on a particular stretch of stream one day than, I think, Dr. Ishigaki, and if I remember correctly he was using bead heads, and commented about how he caught more fish with one color he used than the second color he used, but I can not recall the colors he mentioned. Seems like it was green. But maybe not. I just thought I’d include that color in any order. Pink and red for sure then. :smile:
And a pack or two of the firehole hooks too.


(Gressak) #43

One thing to note about the hooks. The QC on the eyelets is not high. Some of the eyelets are not closed in the batches i have bought. Not an issue if you build a larger head…but if you dont then it may be a dealbreakerfor me its not much of an issue…either build a head to close the gap or use some pliers.


(David S Riley) #44

May I suggest you also consider using glass seed beads, especially the silver lined beads in the crystal clear colour, although the other colours are also very useful. The crystal clear silver lined glass beads simulate an air bubble perfectly.

In my opinion the silver lined glass seed beads give better reflection than other types, also they don’t allow the hook to ‘show through’.

Obviously they don’t allow much weight but you could always add some wire, fuse or unleaded wire.
I buy and use Japanese Toho silver lined glass seed beds in sizes 11/0 and 15/0 (the 15/0 is the smaller size) .
Incidentally Pat Dorsey well known American guide and fly tyer ties up a whole range of flies (his Mercury series).
I live in UK and buy mine from ,

http://jackdaw.blue/en/toho-seed-beads/size-11/silver-lined/crystal-clear.html

http://jackdaw.blue/en/toho-seed-beads/size-15/silver-lined/crystal-clear.html

Happy beading


(Peder) #45

Interesting you say that. Those may have been from the original production run, which I learned had a few problems. I’ve purchased about 34 boxes of their hooks (I think I have 8 left) and have only found 7 hooks with problems. Two didn’t even have eyes, two were week and broke at the hook bend while tying them, and the remainder had incomplete eyes. All of my boxes, save for four were from the original production run. The others, I purchased recently. Oddly enough, I was just looking at the problem hooks this week end. Overall, I’ve been very happy. Others, like @gressak, may have other experiences.


(Gressak) #46

I like the firehole hooks. They are less expensive so having a couple oddball ones to deal with is ok with me.

I was just noting that for some peeps it migh aggrevate them if 7ndisclosed. I recently got a new batch…i will check for flaws


(Peder) #47

Completely agreed. I think it only right to let others know.


(David Walker) #48

Thanks for the input. Interesting that the Toho seed beads appear to be mostly marketed to bead crafters in the internet search results, and the silver lined ones are available at Michaels craft store, one is 30 miles from me. Maybe they stock them.

https://www.michaels.com/toho-11-0-japanese-glass-seed-beads-silvet-lined/M10269957.html

http://www.tohobeads.net/glassbeads/


(David Walker) #49

Well, I managed to jump off the fence yesterday, unfortunately I discovered I was a couple of days late to benefit from the 25% discount on the Firehole tungsten beads. I thought the special pricing lasted till the end of the month.

FH tungsten beads ordered: Almond joy, autumn, caddis green, copper plate, dark olive, fire orange, slate blue, f red.
FH sticks, er hooks: 317 nymph emerger, 417 standard dry fly, and 718 multi-use.
I noticed in the reviews some people thought the sizing ran a little bigger than other manufacturer’s hooks, iow if you want size 12 order size 14. Though maybe that comment was only for some versions of their hooks.

Plus some goose biot, and wire.

Haven’t yet made it to Michael’s craft store to check on the Toho beads.
Also I noticed, after going back and more carefully reading prior post, that David R, and Todoroki-san had already posted some pictures of flies with Toho crystal beads.

Something new and different for me to try tying.


(Peder) #50

Yes, I thinks the hooks run both ways. Example: I personally think the 317 emerger actually runs small compared to other brands. A size 12 is closer to what I’m used to as a 14 (though not quite - maybe a 13 but I’ve never seen one). Whereas, I think the 417 does run a little large. I’ve compared it with other hooks I have and while it does run big, it isn’t a full size larger. In other words, some shapes run a little big and some a little small.