I saw a post by Henry Gilbey on his fishing blog about crushing barbs while sea fishing for bass. Now I know that he is using trebles and we don’t in carp angling, but the question of crushed barbs is an interesting one.
I remember when we did the Remy video that they insisted we use barbless hooks only. I have previously written about “Barbed vs Barbless”, so I won’t go over that again. But are crushed barbs not a better way to go than either barbed or barbless. Barbed vs Barbles
I have been doing this for a long as I can remember, for the simple reason that, while I didn’t want to use a barbed hook, I couldn’t find the barbless version of the model I like…ie. Drennan Continental Boilie hook. So for years I’ve been crushing the barbs on these hooks.
I think it was Tim Paisley who wrote about the advantages of a crushed barb, as it leaves a small bump on the hook, that helps avoids the movement and sewing machine effect that can happen with a barbless hook. It remains however far easier to remove, and more importantly give the fish a chance to shed the hook if it breaks you off or gets snagged. The penetration is better than a barbed hook but it does stay in better than a pure barbless.
Personally I prefer this solution to the microbarbs we see currently. But like so many things in angling it is personal preference. In reference to the original article I never use trebles for any fish but pike and then ‘Yes’ I crush the barbs too. I’ve never really liked trebles, which may be a reason I rarely pike fish. For catfish we always use large singles, and again I crush the barb.
Food for thought.
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