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Rig Guide


Safety | Rigs | Component Guides


Terminal tackle component guides

Find out more about the components you use to build your beach and rock fishing rigs.


Lead links and clips

Choosing the right swivel

Methods of locking a swivel in position

Choosing the right sea fishing hook

There are numerous patterns and sizes of sea fishing hooks available, so which one should you choose?


How to choose the right hook size

To put it simply, your bait should match the target species, and your hook size should match the bait. The hook point should stand proud of the bait to give the best possible chance of a hook-up.


Hook patterns


Anatomy of a fishing hook


There are numerous hook patterns available, but with Aberdeen hooks, Limerick hooks and the modified O'Shaughnessy hooks, you will cover 95% of the UK shore fishing you will ever do.


Aberdeen hooks

Aberdeen sea fishing hooks

The Aberdeen pattern is identified by its round bend, and is available in various styles to cover most fishing situations.

Fine wire Aberdeen hooks, such as Mustad's 3262, are perfect for fishing for smaller species using worm baits. The fine wire doesn't burst the worms, allowing the juices to slowly escape once in the water. The long shank and bendable nature of the hook makes it easier to remove from species such as flatfish which will often take the hook right down.

Slightly heavier wire Aberdeen's, such as the Kamasan B940 make great general purpose hooks. These will still present a worm well, but have a little more strength to handle average sized fish. Kamasan also offer a shorter shank version of the B940, the B940s, which is ideal for crab baits over clean ground.

More recent are the extra wide gape Aberdeen hooks. The first of these, to my knowledge, was the Varivas Big Mouth and Big Mouth Xtra, followed shortly after by the Sakuma Manta and Manta Extra. The (E)Xtra versions are a heavier wire and suitable for big baits and even bigger fish. These razor-sharp hooks can accommodate bulky baits and still leave the hook point proud.

Hooks to look out for are:

Kamasan B940
Mustad 3262
Varivas Taikai Match
Varivas Big Mouth
Varivas Big Mouth Xtra
Sakuma Manta
Sakuma Manta Extra


Limerick hooks

Limerick sea fishing hooks

The Mustad 79515BR is my main choice of hook for fishing rough ground. It is a forged medium wire hook that is capable of handling most big fish. Its wide gape is idea for big baits, but it has two other properties which are desirable when fishing the rough stuff. The first is that, unlike some of the Aberdeen hooks which snap, this hook will bend under the pressure of a heavy snag (rock etc) and can be bent back into shape with a pair of pliers. The second property is that it is easy to re-sharpen the point with a sharpening stone, as all hooks blunt quickly when rubbed against rocks.

Hooks to look out for are:

Mustad 79515BR


O'Shaughnessy hooks

O'Shaughnessy sea fishing hooks

O'Shaughnessy hooks are usually associated with heavy wreck fishing, however Varivas introduced a superb hook aimed at shore fisherman called the Saltwater Champion. This was then followed by Sakuma with their Phantom hook. Both hooks look identical. The two main differences between this hook and a typical O'Shaughnessy hook are the weight and type of wire used, and the fact that the point of the hook doesn't bend outwards. A comparison can be seen below:

Sea fishing hooks

These hooks are reasonably light weight but strong, and ideal for all general beach fishing. They are particularly good for presenting lugworm baits as the abrupt O'Shaughnessy bend prevents the worm from slipping back around the point.

Hooks to look out for are:

Varivas Saltwater Champion
Sakuma Phantom


Hook quality

There are many cheap fishing hooks on the market, but they are cheap for a reason. Some are seconds, some aren't chemically sharpened and others are made from the cheapest wire available to the manufacturer, which will be prone to snapping.

Buy decent hooks from known manufacturers and give yourself the best possible chance of landing a personal best fish.


Rotten bottom systems (coming soon!)

Choosing the right lead (coming soon!)



Your guide to some of the BEST SEA FISHING VENUES on the Yorkshire coast.


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