How To Properly Replace Treble Hooks With Inline Single Hooks [VIDEO]

By: Joseph Simonds on May 2, 2017

how to replace treble hooks with inline hooks

Want to see the best way to replace treble hooks for single hooks?

Then you came to the right place.

If you have ever caught fish on treble hooks, you are probably well aware of the damage they can cause to a fish’s mouth (or even your own body).

These treble hooks can really turn nasty when they hook into sensitive areas of a fish, such as the gills, throat, stomach, and eyes as well. 

You may also be aware of how easily they can snag just about everything – such as grass, trees, rocks, clothing, and landing nets, just to name a few.

Although you can certainly increase your hook up ratios by using treble hooks, you may also lose valuable time that can be used to catch more fish. 

Having to untangle treble hooks from nets and/or removing grass after every cast that the treble hooks have snagged, adds up to a lot of time wasted by the end of the day.

Also, I tend to notice that as I unhook one of the treble hooks from a fish, another hook seems to sneak into the fish’s mouth, turning into a never ending “unhooking” session.

These are some of the top reasons as to why it is useful to switch those nasty treble hooks out with single inline hooks on your hard baits.

how to replace treble hooks with single hooks

The great news is that this can be done on just about any bait that uses treble hooks.

Inline hooks come in a variety of different sizes to match your lure – whether it be a large topwater plug, or a small twitch bait.

An important note is to be sure you are using Inline hooks, and NOT your standard “J” style hooks or circle hooks.

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how to replace treble hooks with single hooks

These inline hooks are specifically made to replace treble hooks on hard baits.

They are super sharp, and the eye of the hook is “inline” with the hook itself to keep the hook inline with the body of the lure.

The eye is also larger to allow the hook to move around freely to help increase hook-ups.

how to replace treble hooks with single hooks

When putting these inline hooks on your lures, make sure you have the hook facing the proper direction as well.

Here is how the inline hooks should face:

  • The rear hook should be facing to the rear
  • The front hook should be facing forward.

If that front hook is facing to the rear, as you retrieve the lure the hook will lay up against the side of the bait, almost hiding it from being able to hook into a fish.

how to replace treble hooks with single hooks

Lastly, be sure to use split ring pliers (as shown below) to remove the treble hooks from the split rings on your hard baits.

They have a notch at the tip that helps to open up the ring to remove or put on a hook.

This is much easier than using standard pliers or trying to just use your fingers.

how to replace treble hooks with single hooks

Split-ring pliers

They will also help save you from hooking yourself.

If you want to make it easier (and you aren’t planning on re-using your treble hooks) I like to snip the ends of the hooks off with wire cutters to eliminate the chance of hooking myself. You could also snip the entire hook off of the split ring to speed up the process.

Just be careful as the hook will tend to go flying as you snip it off. Place a plastic bag or small towel over the lure as you cut the hook to keep it from flying and possibly hitting you (or disappearing until your foot happens to find it).

In the following video I will be talking about using these inline hooks on hard baits, as well as showing you how to put them on your lures, where to purchase and the best ones I have found to use, and the pros and cons of using these hooks on your lures.

Replacing Treble Hooks With Single Hooks [VIDEO]

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Conclusion

As you can see, replacing your treble hooks with single “inline” hooks isn’t that hard.

The two big things to watch out for are as follows:

  1. Don’t stab yourself with the treble hooks while removing them
  2. Make sure you align the inline single hooks the correct way on the lure

Once that is done, you are ready to go catch some fish.

So what do you think?

Any other tips on replacing treble hooks?

Let us know in the comments.

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Related Post: “Steps On Quickly Replacing Treble Hooks On Any Lure” (see it here now)

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William Hawkins
Member

Swapping the hooks out is a great idea and responsible practice. Actually doing it is a much more difficult proposition. Can you elaborate further on the technique used to actually get the hooks on and off the split ring? Even with good pliers It takes me considerable time and frustration to do this. You fast forwarded through that part of the video

Philip White
Member

Great information, Tony! I’ll experiment with this on some of my muskie, walleye and bass lures. My home waters have standing timber and rocks but very little vegetation. Tips like these are what make a Salt Strong membership valuable no matter what species of predators you pursue. Phil

Jonathan Merkel
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Jonathan Merkel

Do you mind me asking how that worked out for you? I would like to make the switch for pike but I am a little bit hesitant. Thanks.
Jonathan

Greg
Guest
Greg

Tony, good informative video. Why can’t i not use a proper sized siwash hook, remove the split ring and connect the siwash directly to lure eyelets? I am having a hard time finding the proper size replacement inline hooks in Canada (#1 and #2). It seems when I do this with the siwash hook, the hook performs not much different than with the split ring. Is there a reason for the split ring on all lures? Thanks, Greg

Doc
Guest
Doc

I’ve been doing single hooks on lures for years. Just use two (2) split rings per hook. Use hooks that don’t have an offset point or realign the offset. Doing hooks this way lets you use just about any single hook that you want to use. As to size of single hook used to replace a treble, the treble hook has a diameter if you look at it from the end of the hook. That diameter translates to the gap for the single hook. With suspending lures you need to use single hooks that are the same weight or less than the trebles they replace. If less the lure might slowly rise in the water column which is also a good tactic.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

How do you know what size in line hook to use?

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

There’s a chart. Google it

Pete Diaz
Member

Should you dispatch a fish before putting him on ice or just throw him in the cooler? And do you bleed out your redfish for better taste?

Deacon John Mostler
Member

Can you change them out on poppers and swim baits?

Lara DeLorenzo-Sims
Member

What size split rings would be appropriate to replace the rings on a super spook jr? Thank you.

Scott Seaton
Member

Thanks again Tony! I just began applying this knowledge on my topwater plugs. Although it takes a bit of patients and getting used to, I love the results and can’t wait to try them out! You da Man! 🙂
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Michael Soileau
Member

Great info & video. Thank you.

Kyle Berwick
Member

BTW. Checked hook availability on several websites (Dicks, Bass pro, Amazon, VMC directly) and the only company selling both the 2/0 and the #2 was Academy Sports. Even though I live in a large metropolitan area, Academy Sports does not have a box store near me but they do have free shipping for my $28. order so it was worth it. And the price per pack was only $2.99 each. How can u beat that!

Larry Carr
Member

Check Mustads site. Thay have all of them.

Kyle Berwick
Member

Tony, great information. Over the years I have accumulated my share of tackle and as I was going to focus on more plastic arificials in my fishing plans, it was Still hard to throw out all these lures that just r not as cheap as soft plastics. This project has been on my mind to replace those nasty treble hooks each time a fish was damaged by them. I would contemplate again, throwing these damn things away but always had great confidence in their catching ability. Not knowing how to pursue changing them, the project just continued to haunt me and never changed them. Now, thanks rto u, I have a plan and a method to get it done NOW. This video just saved me the cost of my membership for a year. Great job!

Tasos Kisgeropoulos
Member

When replacing treble hooks on a lure with 3 hooks such as a Hedon super spook. Do you have the first 2 hooks facing the same direction?

Tasos Kisgeropoulos
Member

Already answered my own question reading the comments below. Thanks

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

I can’t seem to share this wonderful article on FB

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I opened this hoping to gain information regarding sizing. Treble hooks weigh more than single hooks of camparable size. This can have a significant effect on lure buoyancy and action. Of equal concern is hook gap (size) for the inline hook. Should the inline gap be compaired to the distance of a single hook to the shank of the treble , the distance of any two hook points or some other reference? I look forward to your thoughts concerning inline hook sizes for replacement hooks.

Tony Acevedo
Admin

Thank you for the feedback!

The general rule of thumb to choose the correct size hook replacement is to double the distance of the gap of a single hook on the treble from the point to the shank. This would be the size of the gap you would want on a single inline hook. As long as the gap of your inline hook is close to this “doubled” distance it should work just fine.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

Thanks for the info. I was hoping there was a rule-of-thumb. I’m looking to replace. A number of trebles on some larger plugs used off-shore. It will be much “safer” while fishing from a kayak.

Manu C
Guest
Manu C

Best is to weight the treble ones and try to find the good single one.
i even bought a sclae for that purpose.
the hardest is to find a 90° turned eye hooks that weight the same a an inline one
still did not found a manufacturer which do that, is not that hard, take the same inline hook and turn the eye perpendicular …
probably hav to buy a welding torch to do it myself at the cost of a weaker hook .. dumb

Brad Stigleman
Member

Switching to single hooks makes sense in some applications but it does drastically reduce your hook up ratio, especially on very buoyant top water lures like a Zara Spook. That being said, a fish hooked on a lure with single hooks is less likely to be lost during the fight or straighten the hooks. The only time I like dual inline hooks on a top water is if there is a lot of floating grass in the area and I’m gung-ho on fishing top water.
Another option that I’ve found effective is to swap out the tail treble hook with a single hook and leave the front treble in place. Most fish naturally attack the head, or eye of a bait and therefore get caught on the front treble. Having just a single hook on the tail of the bait makes it less likely to hook the fish in multiple areas but it doesn’t diminish your hook up ratio as drastically. Another problem with treble hooks, that wasn’t mentioned, is that inshore fish have a tendency to swim into heavy grass when hooked, in many cases the secondary trebles get caught in the grass causing you to lose your fish, however having a single hook on the tail of the bait makes this less of an issue.
Try switching out the tail treble for an inline hook and see how it works. I think you’ll find you get many of the benefits of having inline hooks without diminishing your hook up ratio too significantly.

Tony Acevedo
Admin

Thank you for the feedback Brad!

From what I have experienced, if you have the correct size hook you really won’t miss too many fish, but you may miss a few. If they strike and miss, they are more likely to come back and hit the lure again. Most often the case with treble hooks, a fish will strike the lure and get stuck by the trebles and be reluctant to strike the lure again after getting hooked. If a fish strikes a lure with inline hooks and misses, there is a higher probability that they didn’t feel the hooks and will come back for another strike, and hopefully connect this time around. Ive never tried just replacing the rear hook but i’ll have to give that a try! Another gentlemen had mentioned that as well.

Jim Wright
Member

An extra step I take is to bend the barb flat on the (new) hook making the lure “barbless.” The small “bump” remaining will help hold a hooked fish while also making dehooking easier on you and the fish.

Tony Acevedo
Admin

Thanks for the extra tip Jim!

David LaPointe
Member

These inline hooks would have been the ticket back in the fresh water pickerel days.

Tony Acevedo
Admin

Oh yes, haha. I couldn’t stand catching pickerel and dealing with all those teeth along with 6 hooks ready to go into my fingers.

DENNIS SYKORA
Member

I’ve heard that you can file down the barbs on the treble hooks and doing this will limit damage to the fish you catch. Has anyone tried this?

Luke Simonds
Admin

I have never filed them down, but I often push them down with pliers which essentially does the same thing and significantly helps make unhooking fish easier.

DENNIS SYKORA
Member

Thanks, I will try that. I agree that treble hooks can do a lot of damage to the hooked fish.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

Drexel tool or just press carefully with pliers. Files can be dicey unless the tool is a good one

Gary Lowe
Member

So, why don’t hard baits come with single hooks instead of those nasty trebs?

Tony Acevedo
Admin

Some of the newer Rapala Lures and also Flats HQ top waters come with inline hooks on them. Treble hooks have just always been a standard on hard baits and I believe it hasn’t quite caught on yet as it’s a fairly new trend.

Jim Wright
Member

Yo Zuri also makes some with single hooks

Bob Schrank
Member

Tony, great tip. We often catch 10 or more smaller trout or snook to one keeper. Sometimes the released fish will not make it. This will definitely increase survival, and insure more bigger fish each year. I fish Lake Michigan salmon and trout in the summer months, and prefer in line salt water hooks over treble hooks on my flies and spoons, so I will try these hooks on my plugs as well. The single in line hooks are set by the strike of the fish, and the fish usually stick very well, and are usually hooked in the side of mouth or in the upper jaw. Again thanks.

Tony Acevedo
Admin

Thanks for the great feedback Bob!

Jerry. ( Great White )
Guest
Jerry. ( Great White )

The most efficient time to add the in line hook is to add it as you remove the trouble hook.
At the same time, the split ring is expanded to remove the treblehook, you can add the in-line hook and never touch the treblehook as you’re
adding the inline hook.

I replace all hooks that are already on split rings that way, with no problem, and save half the time
of reopening the split ring.

I use this technique on micro lures that have treble hooks as small as 12# and 14#

Tony Acevedo
Admin

Yep I also do that if I don’t have access to any split ring pliers. Once that ring is open I want to make the most of it so sliding the new hook on as the treble is coming off is very effective. Thanks for leaving the tip!

Justin Stack
Member

Hey Tony, great information! How would you recommend rigging a Super Spook (not the super spook jr) that comes with three larger trebles?

Tony Acevedo
Admin

Thanks Justin!

If it has 3 trebles (front, middle, and back of the lure) the front and middle hooks should face forward and the back one face to the rear. You would also have to go to a larger hook.

David LaPointe
Member

I like the super spook saltwater version, only comes with 2 trebles. On all of my 3 hook ones I remove the center hook. And have recently started to switch to in line singles but never knew what size to get. Subsequently I now have many hooks that are too small or too big. Thanks for the size recommendation, that will save time and money!
Have also heard that the hook up ratio is actually greater with the in line hooks. And as always, wait till you feel the fish before setting the hook on top water lures.
As always, Thanks for all the great information and tips. I feel blessed to be part of such an awesome group!

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

G’day mate. I replaced trebles with singles on all my lures some time ago. Done exactly as you have. As far as three hook lures go I replaced with two only. One forward and one rear. I started doing this initially for metal jig style lures in the 2 to 3 ounce range using them for spinning off the rocks for tuna etc. that was back in the mid sixties. I got hooked up by flying lures a few times hence the change. Also easier to get lure out of tackle box. Have a good day. ?????

Bill Williamson
Member

What size hook are you talking about? I got the 2/0 which is the size mentioned in the video. Do you need a bigger hook than that? If so what size?

Tony Acevedo
Admin

Hey Bill,

What is the lure you are replacing them on?

Bill Williamson
Member

I bought the 2/0 for my top water lures, Super Spook Jr and the comments scitter walk. I also have some Mirro Lure with the C eyes which have a little bigger hooks. I bought #2 size hooks for my twitch baits and suspended baits. However, I have some that have three sets of treble hooks. I read where you said double the size of the hook gap to go to single hooks, just wondering what size they are before ordering them. No one in my area carries in line single hooks. Thanks for your reply.