Inevitably, though, I am short of pegboard hooks or have just the kind I don't need or I feel simply too cheap to use a hook for "just that".
I thought I would resign myself to moving up in the world and just using "real" hooks, but when I got back to basics I found my bench empty and my pegboard full of things, the way it was meant to be.
Step 1: The Tools of This Trade
-Pliers with wire cutters, or wire cutters and pliers (two pair if you have them)
There are a couple of different packaging methods for tie wire-the one that's easiest to find in your home improvement store is a stick with the tie wire wrapped around it. This seems to be at least twice as expensive per length of wire as the rolls, so I highly recommend finding it in a roll like the one pictured above.
More info: If you aren't familiar with tie wire, your world is about to be rocked (in my humble opinion). It's the stuff that rod busters (steel workers) use to tie rebar structures together with for concrete reinforcement. It is looped around whatever you're securing and twisted-it can take a pretty good amount of twisting before you snap it.
I'm not a safety ninny, but DO be careful with the cut ends of tie wire-it can find its way into your skin rather abruptly. The ends are very sharp. Aside from this caution, read on to find out why it's so awesome! Some half decent gloves should assuage even the most timid reader. It's worth it!
Step 2: Cutting and Forming
Ok, after you cut your wire, fold it in half. Ideally you want to kind of pinch it together along the length to get out where it is skinny enough to fit in the standard package holes (about a 1/4").
After you fold it in half you need to make a few bends. The final shape you're looking for as a basic hook is shown in the last picture. You need a vertical leg, a horizontal jog, vertical leg and then your hook. The length of the first vertical leg and the horizontal jog are what play the biggest part in your hook staying more firmly in the peg board. Also, if the first vertical leg is somewhat splayed it will help stabilize the hook.
Step 3: So Much More
Hang things that don't fit the hooks by adding a tie wire loop as shown on the plug adaptors.
In the third picture you can see how to hang tubing with tie wire-straighten it out enough to get through the tubing, bend one end and put a loop on the other-hang tube!
In the very busy, almost impossible to clearly discern anything picture are pieces of tie wire used to hold brake calipers when replacing brake pads.
Organize long skinny things by hanging some cardboard tubes under shelves and tie them up there with...tie wire!
Make yourself an impromptu phone stand suitable for garage duty. Ha! Duty!
When I get a couple of more pictures I'll show some other handy around the shop uses.
Create away on the cheap!
Step 4: One or a Few Last Things
Also, open packages carefully and you can use the original package the way it was hung on display in the store.
With enough stuff on your peg board you can even have a clean bench!!!