Heres the deal: Regarding the relative use of an indiator for chironomid fishing vs. aquiring the skill for detecting subtle strikes without the indicator. POPPYCOCK!!! The absolute only reason I use an indicator with chironomid is to keep it off the bottom and to buy lots of time with a correct presentation. It is sooo easy to detect the subtle takes without an indicator. All you have to do id keep your eyes glued to either your floating line (the way I always fish chironos) or your leader. If you can see (and pay attention) you can see the subtle or not so subtle hits. Clearly, (at least for me) the indicator is misnamed as strike indicator. Rather, it should be called depth indicator. This really is funny to me that anyone thinks its a great mystery or skill to be able to detect hitd without an indicator as long as you stay focused on your line. Heres my great secret...I always keep a slightly fluffed line That is to say a little slack in both the fly-line and the leader. That makes it much easier to detect the hits (as the line unfurls or shimmies when bumped) and gives the fish enough slack as to not detect the pull of the line (and you) until its too late.