In my quest to find a weedless wacky hook, I came across the VMC Weedless Neko hooks. I have been using these for some time when, as a Charter Member, Ultimate Bass sent me a pack and asked me to write a review. I was ecstatic, to say the least. Please keep in mind, although I received a package for free, my review is based on hours of fishing with these hooks. With the disclaimer out of the way, let me tell everyone about this great hook.
VMC Weedless Neko Hooks – The Secret
The VMC Weedless Neko hooks have a 3-degree offset point, meaning the hook point is pushed slightly sideways off center for an increased hooking rate. Hooking rate was the major downfall of several other weedless hooks I have tested. Losing bass on the VMC Weedless Neko hook is a very rare occurrence. I have confidence when I set the hook on a bass, it’s going to stay hooked. The longer shank compared to other wacky hooks also seems to help. I tested the 1/0 version, and I think it is a perfect size hook with the right size length to keep the hook in the bass’s mouth.
VMC Weedless Neko Hooks – It’s Important
The hook has a resin-closed eye, which is excellent and keeps the line from slipping and getting caught in a non-sealed hook wedge. This is a great feature and is just one of the little things making this a top-notch hook.
VMC Weedless Neko Hooks – Is It?
VMC really thought the weed guards through on this hook. They are fluorocarbon weed guards which work very well at keeping the hook clean when fishing it through grass and weeds. In fact, I have even used the hook inside light pad fields with eel grass beneath them with no troubles. VMC Weedless Neko hooks are an excellent choice when needing a weedless option. Best of all, the weed guard is fluorocarbon: it can be adjusted to any position and angler needs, they are clear, and they are long, protecting the entire hook. The fluorocarbon weed guards are perfect for keeping the hook clean most of the time, and flexible enough the weed guards don’t impede hook-up when a bass strikes. They can be shortened slightly if an angler feels it necessary, but keep in mind the hook may pick up more weeds. I have tried the hook with full-length weed guards and slightly cut guards. I have found no evidence to show cutting the weed guards shorter helps with hook-ups.
VMC Weedless Neko Hooks – Strong!
Sturdiness is an important quality I was looking for in my quest for a wacky/Neko hook. With other brands and even within the VMC brand, wacky hooks are very light wire and meant for more open water. Here in Florida, grass and pad fields are the names of the game. Vegetation rules our fisheries and a light wire hook limits where it can be thrown, light wire hooks also limit the line anglers can use. I forced a few hook brands to work with 50 lb. braid in pad fields. While I caught a few bass, ultimately the hooks would bend out and be useless rather quickly. The VMC Weedless Neko hook is sturdier than others and is a slightly thicker wire. Sure, it’s not a Superline hook, and I would still recommend fishing it on monofilament or fluorocarbon lines or braid to a leader, as opposed to straight braid. But in a pinch, anglers could tie straight braid to these hooks, fishing it carefully inside a sparse pad field.
VMC Weedless Neko Hooks – No Limits
Sometimes anglers limit products use to their given name. It’s a Neko hook so I can only use it for Neko rigs. Sometimes products are optimal for the intended technique, but sometimes thinking outside the box can catch extra bass. Point being, not only have I used this hook as a Neko/Wacky hook, but I also used it much like a jig head on a fluke. Because the hook has no weight, it allowed the fluke to maintain its natural presentation. A slow fall with great side to side action. But it also gave me the benefit of a weedless exposed hook. When my wacky presentation wasn’t working, this technique caught bass. The hook was thread through the nose of the fluke, carefully keeping it in the middle and bringing it up so the hook shank was no longer exposed. The weed guards pushed up and forward protecting the hook from the pesky wall of vegetation on the canal drop off I was fishing. This technique can be used with other soft plastic baits, even craws and creature baits with a slender profile. However, after a fluke, my next favorite is a stick bait.
VMC Weedless Neko Hooks come in four sizes. While I have only tested the 1/0 hook, I believe the other sizes would work just as well. When I get the chance, I will purchase a size 1 to see if there is an added benefit with a smaller hook. Though bass do not shy away from the 1/0 in my experience. VMC Weedless Neko Hooks come in 5 packs and range in size 1, 2, 1/0, and 2/0. Every size anglers need to start Neko and Wacky fishing!
See you on the water,
Rick Del Prado
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