Thinamabobbers kind of suck. What's better?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by JesseC, Dec 30, 2011.

  1. JesseC

    JesseC Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Messages:
    2,097
    Media:
    5
    Likes Received:
    854
    Location:
    seattle, wa
    I've caught a lot of fish on thingamabobbers. They are good for straight forward trout water drifts in water that is 2-6ft deep. I have been searching for a better alternative for a long time. I've tried the yarn indicators, but they face some of the same problems as a thingamabobber.

    The biggest issue I have is that the thingamabobbers don't indicate whether the flies are fishing properly. Meaning, with a vertical bobber like a balsa float, I can see when the flies are in the prime position because the indicator is pointing straight up and down. Also, with a vertical indicator, I can see bottom ticks and sideways strikes much clearer. They are much more sensitive.

    I've actually been using some balsa floats on my fly line - especially when the run I'm fishing is deeper than 5 ft. The bummer is that they're bulky and it looks stupid. Has anyone found something that works better than the thingabobbers? Something that shows a vertical indication of how the flies are moving?

    Also of note - I tried the new screw on bobbers. The balloon versions are near worthless. The trapped air plastic ones are an improvement over the thingas, but there's no difference in terms of how they perform from thingas.
     
  2. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2007
    Messages:
    6,569
    Media:
    61
    Likes Received:
    1,741
    Location:
    Duvall, wa
    Home Page:
  3. JesseC

    JesseC Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Messages:
    2,097
    Media:
    5
    Likes Received:
    854
    Location:
    seattle, wa
    I just picked up a couple of those from OE two nights ago! Been wanting to check them out for sure. The only bummer seems that they're super small and aren't going to handle the ridiculous 1/4oz jigs I like molesting my fly rod with.
     
  4. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2007
    Messages:
    6,569
    Media:
    61
    Likes Received:
    1,741
    Location:
    Duvall, wa
    Home Page:
    Then buy the bigger ones!
     
  5. JesseC

    JesseC Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Messages:
    2,097
    Media:
    5
    Likes Received:
    854
    Location:
    seattle, wa
    OK!!!
     
  6. jeff bandy

    jeff bandy Make my day

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2006
    Messages:
    2,628
    Media:
    2
    Likes Received:
    557
    Location:
    Edmonds, Wa.
    Jesse did you see the kind I'm using now. Not to bulky and very sensitive.
     
  7. Josh

    Josh dead in the water

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2006
    Messages:
    3,081
    Media:
    11
    Likes Received:
    583
    Location:
    NW Washington
    In addition to the other complaints, Thingamabobbers are just about the worst for being popped off if you snag up on something and have to break off your fly. I have lost more of them than just about any other indicator I've tried.

    Maybe it's something about the way I'm using them, but I' find it really annoying. So I'm just using up the ones I have and I doubt I'll be buying more.
     
  8. Dustin Bise

    Dustin Bise Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2007
    Messages:
    3,088
    Media:
    79
    Likes Received:
    7
    Location:
    509
    thingamabobbers obly work well on 20+ lb maxima. anything else cuts them, kinks super bad, and lets them slip unless u double loop them, in which ccase its a pain to adjust them,
     
  9. JesseC

    JesseC Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Messages:
    2,097
    Media:
    5
    Likes Received:
    854
    Location:
    seattle, wa
    Josh - it's important to have the loop connector cinched into one small knot at the top of the thingabobber instead of wrapped around the step. I had been wrapping it around the stem for a long time and had lost a ton of bobbers that way - until docstash showed me that I was being stupid.

    Anyhow - not sure if that's what youre doing.... just another reason to find a better bobber.
     
  10. JesseC

    JesseC Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Messages:
    2,097
    Media:
    5
    Likes Received:
    854
    Location:
    seattle, wa
    Using 18 inches of amnesia as a butt section helps relieve this - but again - another reason to find a better bobber :)
     
  11. Breck

    Breck Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2010
    Messages:
    294
    Likes Received:
    82
    Location:
    Lynnwood, WA
    I'm a fan of the Frog Hair inline indicators. They're all I use.
     
  12. Stewart

    Stewart Skunk Happens

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2006
    Messages:
    951
    Likes Received:
    47
    Location:
    Spokane
    http://www.swedesflyshop.com/estore/details/29501/0/4371

    I have one of these but have never used it. So while I can't say how well it actually works, but it might be worth trying.

    As for vertical indicators, when I used to fish ponds as a kid in the south, we used porcupine quill bobbers. I have never seen them for sale around here, but google should have them. I was usually using crickets for bait and fishing for bream (bluegill). What I liked about them is that they point straight up if the bait/fly is heavy enough and they are way more "sensitive" than any round bobber. Due to their shape, the fish can barely feel them and they telegraph a strike really well. May cast like shit on a fly rod though.
     
  13. Rick Todd

    Rick Todd Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,878
    Likes Received:
    238
    Location:
    Ferndale/Winthrop
    Jesse-I know you don't like the Sku-it indicators, but wondering why. I like them as you can adjust the amount of buoyancy to the weight you are fishing and they don't kink the line. Also pretty easy to cast. I was using dime store balloons before the thingamabobbers and they worked well but again kinks in the line and not easy to adjust the amount of air without re-rigging. I'm of the opinion that the best way to know if your flies are fishing right is to have enough lead above the flies and enough buoyancy on your indicator. Rick
     
  14. JesseC

    JesseC Active Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Messages:
    2,097
    Media:
    5
    Likes Received:
    854
    Location:
    seattle, wa
    I tried the sku-it indicators for half a day. My buddy used the balloon indicator and it lost the air twice. He took it off in frustration. The trapped air ones are "ok". But the round shape doesn't provide vertical information on whether the flies are fishing correctly.
     
  15. Stonefish

    Stonefish Triploid, Humpy & Seaplane Hater

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2003
    Messages:
    3,863
    Media:
    189
    Likes Received:
    1,258
    Location:
    Pipers Creek
    + 1 on either the Thill or Frog Hair indicators.
    Put a rubber bobber stop on both ends for easy adjustment up or down your leader. They don't mess up your leader.
    You can use a big cheater, corkie or winner as well in a pinch.
     
  16. Rick Todd

    Rick Todd Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,878
    Likes Received:
    238
    Location:
    Ferndale/Winthrop
    I used to use the Frog Hair bobbers exclusively, and in my drift boat or pontoon, that works fine as I have two rods, one for nymphing and one for dry flies. If you are hiking with one rod, the frog hair requires too much work to switch from nymphs to drys for me. Otherwise, they work fine. Rick
     
  17. sroffe

    sroffe Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2007
    Messages:
    462
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Balsa floats work great on a CP out fit. Just saying...
     
  18. ak_powder_monkey

    ak_powder_monkey Proud to Be Alaskan

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2004
    Messages:
    3,223
    Media:
    39
    Likes Received:
    112
    Location:
    Eagle River, Alaska
    maybe use a centerpin float?
     
  19. rory

    rory Go Outside

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2011
    Messages:
    473
    Likes Received:
    198
    Location:
    Maple Leaf, WA
    Home Page:
    A dry fly.
     
  20. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2007
    Messages:
    6,569
    Media:
    61
    Likes Received:
    1,741
    Location:
    Duvall, wa
    Home Page:
    We get it dude. You hate nymphing.
     

Share This Page