Why did we develop new titanium hooks for our gaffs?
Our customers and supporters have come to expect cutting edge technology and “pushing the envelope” from us. The initial genesis of titanium models of our patented gaff hook came as we did displacement calculations with our stainless steel hooks and gaff handle designs and realized that our gaffs with the 6″ hook would no longer float without some sort of cheap, expendable foam grips added for significantly more water displacement on the product. That would go against our pedigree. Our pedigree isn’t to use bigger or fatter horses, but instead to use lighter and faster ones! The 6″ stainless hook also made our gaffs feel extremely out of balance, or “hook-heavy” and much like the gaffs on the market that inspired us to develop our gaffs in the first place. After two stories of giant bluefin tuna pulling our gaffs and also harpoon darts down and fading into the deep blue to not be seen again, we forced through the engineering obstacles and made a tough to work with titanium alloy work.
Now, our 6″ titanium alloy hook weighs the same as our 4″ stainless steel hook, so titanium solved the problem and kept our gaffs, every model we make, afloat. As we learned to work the titanium alloy, we started to realize how much potential there was for our smaller gaffs as well.
How much lighter is titanium vs. stainless steel?
Our titanium and stainless hooks are identical, geometrically, but the titanium alloy versions are approximately 40% lighter. If you don’t think a few ounces matter, try holding up the differing weights at the end of a 6ft or 8ft long fulcrum.
Benefits of a lighter gaff:
- less fatigue
- less likely to have rushed shots
- faster response
- more accuracy
- less wasted meat
- less tournament blood loss
- better control of the fish
How strong are the titanium hooks?
Our titanium hooks are not plain titanium but titanium alloy. Our titanium alloy hooks are made of a type of titanium called 6Al-4V. The yield strength, i.e.: the amount of force needed to permanently bend it, of this alloy is 120,000 psi. Our stainless gaff hooks are made from 17-4 stainless steel, which we polish and passivate before attaching into the carbon fiber handles with high strength adhesive and composite insulator bushings. 17-4 stainless steel has a yield strength of 110,000 psi. By comparison, 316/316L stainless steel that many other gaff hooks are made of has a yield strength of 30,000 psi. Coincidentally, pure un-alloyed titanium, which has also been used for gaff hooks at times, has a yield strength of 40,000 psi. We are literally using material that is 3-4 times stronger, and similar comparisons exist with these materials’ hardnesses, which allows us to maintain such a sharp point on the gaff that doesn’t need resharpening. The reason mass produced gaffs do not use the materials we do is because doing so is very difficult and expensive. There must be a level of craftsmanship and attention in order to make our hooks and gaffs, and you’ll appreciate it when you first hold our product and then even moreso when you use it.
What colors can you make your titanium hooks in?
There’s a broad array of colors and hues that our titanium alloy hooks can be anodized in, but red and black are not possible. Therefore, we have continued to offer our proprietary coating system on our stainless hooks in red or black. Titanium is not anodized with dyed or tinted acids like other metals. The process is actually very environmentally friendly and unique. Titanium oxide is built up on the outside of titanium as a protective coating naturally, but anodizing can control the thickness of this oxide layer in order to have a refractive effect and absorb more or less colors from light visible to the human eye. By altering the thickness of the coating layer, we can produce different colors, such as blue, pink, green, yellow, purple, and more. If you want a truly unique tool on your boat that will last a lifetime, this is it!
OK. The gaffs are extremely light and good looking, but how durable are they?
All our gaffs are lifetime warrantied. If you aren’t satisfied that your new gaff isn’t the best (including the toughest) you’ve ever seen, held or used, you can return it for a full refund.