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IceShanty Main => General Ice Fishing Chit Chat => Topic started by: Noon on Oct 09, 2018, 12:44 PM

Title: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Noon on Oct 09, 2018, 12:44 PM
I have read people chatting about spring bobbers with all kinds of mixed opinions. It seems to be a matter of preference. I am looking for a bit more experiential information.

What are the most budget worth it spring bobbers?
What kind of spring bobbers do you use?
Do they help you catch fish?
What to steer clear from if buying/using spring bobbers?
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Junkie4Ice on Oct 09, 2018, 12:53 PM
You'll get a million different opinions on this topic, here's mine:
-Rapala titanium spring bobbers are my favorite. I like that you can easily adjust the sensitivity and they are easily installed and removed. Only downfall is the line can get tangled on the backside if you are reducing the sensitivity.
-They won't catch you more fish, but they allow you to see a bite easier. Same thing that a good noodle rod will do

I've used the cheap one with the spring attached to a foam plug, they were terrible. Overall, I hate using spring bobbers because I haven't found one that is 'flawless' but they serve their purpose. I have a custom power noodle and a ticklestick and find myself using these two rods without a spring bobber 9 times out of ten.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: cwavs1982 on Oct 09, 2018, 01:05 PM
I agree with Junkie.  I tried using the spring bobbers for a season and did not like the setup or use of them.  Fishing outside is tough with any wind - it messes them up.  Switched over to the Ticklestick rods and like these much better.   These are now all I use.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Flint on Oct 09, 2018, 01:06 PM
Definitely worth it. Turns about any ho hum rod into a fish catching machine. I can hear the screaming now but for the money try the Clam nitinol ones. The new ones have been very good and donít take a set like some will claim. The Frabill will be a top pick by most and are good, using a larger eye that small jigs will pass through. Stay away from the foamy bic lighter spring ones. If wind is a problem turn your back to it, no noodle rod will will beat the sensitivity of a spring. Not saying I donít use noodles either.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: 52isntbigenough on Oct 09, 2018, 01:11 PM
I have to say that last year was my first real pan fish season, targeting Perch. I tried what I thought were sensitive custom pan fish rods without spring bobbers then went to a St Croix Legend with their spring and it was a night and day difference in seeing bites. I'd never fish without a spring bobber again.

Had a chance to fish Perch up on Lake Gogebic for the first time last winter and all they use is Teeter's Pig springs.  They're cheap and very sensitive. I broke 2" off an old Avid and bought one, they work amazingly well.

(https://i.imgur.com/9Xu8g8Q.jpg)
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: piersm2 on Oct 09, 2018, 01:18 PM
Go with a noodle rod instead of spring bobbers.  I have never had much luck with them though.

That being said, I may build a rod this year that actually has the spring bobber wrapped.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: SLAYERFISH on Oct 09, 2018, 01:28 PM
I like rods with backbone. I use wire indicators instead of an actual "spring". I can use the same rod for 7lb trout and walleyes and 9" perch or crappies. 
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: stinkyfingers on Oct 09, 2018, 01:33 PM
They have their place against the light biting species. Even trout and kokanee can give a bite as soft as an angel's kiss. Went back to fishing outdoors a few years back and the wind can just play havoc with false nibbles so I fish my deadsticks another way now.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: SHaRPS on Oct 09, 2018, 01:55 PM
X2 for the st croix rods and their spring bobbers. No one has mentioned crappie and spring bobbers. This is where they are 100% crucial for that upwards bite. No rod will show you that with a 1/64th tungsten jig in real time.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Noon on Oct 09, 2018, 02:01 PM
To clarify information regarding use. I am going to be targeting trout (not char) and kokane most of the time. And I will be fishing in a pop-up with limited wind interference or icing line/eyes.

In my limited hardwater experience, I had a day where we just had the flasher lighting up all morning long in 30-40 ft of water, fish coming right up to the lures but almost never getting a hit (so we thought). Landed 3 fish but marked between 20 and 30. We ended up moving into shallows and the light was good enough to see the fish. They would come up and just barely suck in the jig with almost no tug or tension to the line. Then spit it out and sometimes even suck it in again. If we couldn't have seen them take the bait, we would not have known to set the hook because I just couldn't feel such lite bites. I am looking for information on spring bobbers that might show such soft takes.

Thanks everyone for the input so far.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Junkie4Ice on Oct 09, 2018, 02:07 PM
X2 for the st croix rods and their spring bobbers. No one has mentioned crappie and spring bobbers. This is where they are 100% crucial for that upwards bite. No rod will show you that with a 1/64th tungsten jig in real time.

A high quality noodle rod will.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: WiMeatHunter on Oct 09, 2018, 02:10 PM
I bought the Frabill Titanium Spring Bobbers and cut the little tear drop off of the back side and wrapped the spring with thread and clear finger nail polish to the tip of each of my panfish rods! On super windy days it can be a bit of a challenge but what isn't on those kind of days?
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: eriksat1 on Oct 09, 2018, 02:38 PM
I have not found any type of spring bobbers better than the Marmish bite indicators, #1, 2, 3, you have to match the indicator to the weight of the jig by testing first. You can slide the indicator in or out to fine tune. Yes it takes a little extra work to attach to your rod. I cut a slit in the rubber with a razor blade, then epoxy it on the rod. There may be a better way to attach to rod? I did a couple of rods with a permanent epoxy mount. I mount them on the top side of the rod. If I don't want to use the bite indicator I just don't thread the line through it and retract it all the way back. I fine tune it about 1/2 bend so I can see a up or down strike. All a fish has to do is look at it and it starts to move, lol. Until I find one that works better this is my go to.
https://www.marmish.ca/shop/items.html?type=4
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: RyanW on Oct 09, 2018, 02:44 PM
X2 for the st croix rods and their spring bobbers. No one has mentioned crappie and spring bobbers. This is where they are 100% crucial for that upwards bite. No rod will show you that with a 1/64th tungsten jig in real time.
A high quality noodle rod will.

I know my TUCR Precision Noodle most certainly will.

I love what spring bobbers do but I hate having them attached to any rod. Canít stand it. I cut my teeth on schooley setups so when I advocate for a spring bobber, I suggest the type that are on those (just a cheap HT spring bobber). I ditched spring bobbers about 5 years ago, went to custom tapered rods, and never looked back. There isnít any bite that even the best spring bobbers show that a well built noodle rod wonít show. Plus, itís one less thing to get in the way.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: piersm2 on Oct 09, 2018, 03:15 PM
I know my TUCR Precision Noodle most certainly will.

I love what spring bobbers do but I hate having them attached to any rod. Canít stand it. I cut my teeth on schooley setups so when I advocate for a spring bobber, I suggest the type that are on those (just a cheap HT spring bobber). I ditched spring bobbers about 5 years ago, went to custom tapered rods, and never looked back. There isnít any bite that even the best spring bobbers show that a well built noodle rod wonít show. Plus, itís one less thing to get in the way.

I know the power noodle blank from BK will as well.  I am going to build a carbon rod with a spring bobber tip just to have, but I am very confident in visual strike indicator on my noodles.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: eriksat1 on Oct 09, 2018, 03:20 PM
Problem is I don't like a wet noodle rod, I like a little stiffer tip, just add on a bite indicator problem solved. I wouldn't crappie fish without one.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: perchnut on Oct 09, 2018, 03:52 PM
Ive built some good noodle rods, and yeah, if you study those tips, you can detect the bites really well.....fishing through thick weeds for big gills, a quality spring bobber is hard to beat.  I like them on palm rods and I also broke the tip off of one of my favorites, so I put a spring on that, and back in the game.....bottom line, im warming up to them really quickly!!  Its that up bite that helps to convince you.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: skifisher on Oct 09, 2018, 04:27 PM
Itís all a matter of personal preference and what you get used to. I mostly fish for trout, char and kokanee salmon and find the spring bobber very useful in detecting a light bite. I can see where the wind and icing can be a problem, but the same is true with sensitive rods and iced up guides. Might I suggest experimenting a bit, and see what you prefer. Also, donít rule out ice bobbers matched to your jig weight for another technique for determining that light take. A lot of fish are never buttoned up due to them sensing vibration when you pick up your rod. Just a suggestion. Ski
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: blakemohr on Oct 09, 2018, 04:45 PM
Ice Strong indicators are awesome.  I wrap them onto ML rods for crappie/walleye live minnow setups (ala JT walleye snare).
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Iceassin on Oct 09, 2018, 04:57 PM
X2 on the Ice Strongs...best on the market IMO. I've modified mine a bit. Bent the last 3/4"  at a 90* angle and bent the loop at the end downward. Tied it on at about a 45* angle. Much easier to see on my 36" and 48" rods. These things are stupid sensitive!
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: laer0302 on Oct 09, 2018, 05:04 PM
I started using spring bobbers last year, and am a total convert. I can't imagine that I'll be using those yellow foam bobbers much at all anymore. My favorite are the Rapala ones. I like them because they actually lock on to the rod tip, so they can't ever slide or fall off. I've used the Frabill titanium one and the Clam nitrinol one's as well, and those both work good too. The cheap HT ones that don't have a good mechanism for attaching to the rod are complete garbage though.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: stinkyfingers on Oct 09, 2018, 05:35 PM
They're actually not too tough to make yourself at home . I used to knock out three or four every Fall getting ready for the season. Go to any hardware store or one of the big box stores and in the section where they have the oddball metal shapes, bars, slotted angle etc. you'll find some tubes that have various diameters of spring wire, typically in 30" pieces. Pick one up, pinch it about 4" from the end to test the springiness and go through the sizes until you find the one you like. Get two or three sticks because you're going to screw up at first. In your shop, you'll need some wire cutters, two pair of needle nose pliers and a propane torch. For the little bright indicator I've used faceted brightly colored glass beads and even cannibalized some little orange styrofoam  teardrops from some old salmon lures. Anything light and bright. Cut off about an 8" section of wire. It will bend readily when heated with the torch into loops, angles etc.. returns to springiness upon cooling. Fold the dead end back on itself and either wrap it or hot glue it to the rod. Takes a little practice.
I realize on reading this that most guys are not going to go to all that trouble when you can just buy them pretty cheap. Personally, I like making stuff.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Iceassin on Oct 09, 2018, 05:54 PM
They're actually not too tough to make yourself at home . I used to knock out three or four every Fall getting ready for the season. Go to any hardware store or one of the big box stores and in the section where they have the oddball metal shapes, bars, slotted angle etc. you'll find some tubes that have various diameters of spring wire, typically in 30" pieces. Pick one up, pinch it about 4" from the end to test the springiness and go through the sizes until you find the one you like. Get two or three sticks because you're going to screw up at first. In your shop, you'll need some wire cutters, two pair of needle nose pliers and a propane torch. For the little bright indicator I've used faceted brightly colored glass beads and even cannibalized some little orange styrofoam  teardrops from some old salmon lures. Anything light and bright. Cut off about an 8" section of wire. It will bend readily when heated with the torch into loops, angles etc.. returns to springiness upon cooling. Fold the dead end back on itself and either wrap it or hot glue it to the rod. Takes a little practice.
I realize on reading this that most guys are not going to go to all that trouble when you can just buy them pretty cheap. Personally, I like making stuff.

I'm a DYI guy myself...LOVE making my own stuff. I started making wires (don't like the term spring for some reason 😉) using #30 leader material. They worked real well but became brittle and broke over time...even being painted. Don't  have to worry about that with the titaniums. Little pricey but well worth it in my opinion.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: skifisher on Oct 09, 2018, 06:23 PM
If thereís a music instrument repair shop nearby, especially if they repair/replace guitar strings you can usually find all you can us for cheap. If not, even new metal ďstringsĒ can be found at a nominal cost. Iíve made a few for using the strings and a glass bead. Experiment until you find the right ltngth and sensitivity.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Iceassin on Oct 09, 2018, 06:29 PM
If thereís a music instrument repair shop nearby, especially if they repair/replace guitar strings you can usually find all you can us for cheap. If not, even new metal ďstringsĒ can be found at a nominal cost. Iíve made a few for using the strings and a glass bead. Experiment until you find the right ltngth and sensitivity.

I like that  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: blakemohr on Oct 09, 2018, 06:43 PM
If thereís a music instrument repair shop nearby, especially if they repair/replace guitar strings you can usually find all you can us for cheap. If not, even new metal ďstringsĒ can be found at a nominal cost. Iíve made a few for using the strings and a glass bead. Experiment until you find the right ltngth and sensitivity.

I have used guitar strings as well(I have played for years).  It works in a pinch, but there are much better options out there.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: trapper2000 on Oct 09, 2018, 07:00 PM
use a lighter rod  or   rip the spring out of a bic lighter ya see laying on the  ground
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Iceassin on Oct 09, 2018, 07:30 PM
use a lighter rod  or   rip the spring out of a bic lighter ya see laying on the  ground

Says the guy who picks up the cigarette next to the bic lighter and uses the filter as a sponge bobber  :roflmao:
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: blakemohr on Oct 09, 2018, 08:14 PM
Anyone that's on the fence on trying out strike indicators, forget about the ones that are an actual spring.  Instead, definitely go with titanium wire options like the Ice Strong.  The actual springs get so clogged with ice when you're outside the shack, they're rendered useless in minutes.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: matzilla on Oct 09, 2018, 08:21 PM
Ive built some carbon rods that show a crappie up bite fwiw - start sanding blanks and testing them out, anything is possible

Noodle blank or spring bobber, whatever you have confidence in will work just fine
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: djlangen on Oct 09, 2018, 08:52 PM
Attached are four types of spring bobbers that I use on my rods. By far the most sensitive of the bunch are those that are made out of either lavsan or mylar. I buy these directly from Russia or the Ukraine and have them on all of my palm rods as well as jigging rods. At a correct load of around 45 degrees, these detect the smallest bites.
On some of my long rods, I fish with either a homemade Bic lighter spring bent at a 90 degree angle or a Lite Byte spring bobber.
When the fish prefer a more aggressive jigging style, I ditch the spring bobber poles and break out my 18-20 inch tightlining rods with a dropper fly. I have found that sometimes switching over to live bait and varying my jig cadence from a swimming to pounding one is all it takes to trigger more bites.
(https://i.postimg.cc/0b0ywbvK/IMG_20181009_202557526.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/0b0ywbvK)

(https://i.postimg.cc/3krJCYrS/IMG_20181009_202810932_HDR.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/3krJCYrS)

(https://i.postimg.cc/6TR3BM10/IMG_20181009_202949807.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/6TR3BM10)

(https://i.postimg.cc/Wd9p5Ch2/IMG_20181009_203256033_HDR.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/Wd9p5Ch2)

(https://i.postimg.cc/5Qc2wzjL/IMG_20181009_203537448.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/5Qc2wzjL)
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Noon on Oct 10, 2018, 12:15 AM
Awesome suggestions from so many people. Lots of varying opinions and many seem to be pretty strong opinions at that  :D It seems that as long as it is of some quality and practice is done to learn it, there are lots of spring bobbers, i dicators, noodle rods, and fishaholic toys that can really help with lite bites. To help alleviate some of the hardwater fever that I seem to catch everytime it gets cold outside, Im going to try some DIY wire indicators and spring bobbers. Ill try to remember to take pics or videos but i will definitely report on how they turn out and compare the results once the ice is thick enough. If the weather stays thjs way much longer and we will have a super early season in Montana.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: ryno on Oct 10, 2018, 01:50 AM
I never was a fan of the traditional spring bobber. However, I love the titanium/nitinol bobbers.  I have several custom rods that I have made with them.  I don't like the clip on ones...they gotta be tied on.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: UFCreel on Oct 10, 2018, 06:41 AM
While i use a Bic lighter spring on my long rods. I have to say Ice Strong Titanium Spring Bobbers are fantastic and priced right. I have them on my shorter rods. Up, Down, sideways bites are all detected with them on. https://fishicestrong.com/
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: hole_hopper454 on Oct 10, 2018, 06:43 AM
Spring bobbers are 100% necessary. I can't remember how many times I've out-fished guys how used noodle rods or custom rods while I'm using a cheap rod with a spring bobber. It's not just about detecting the light bites, but it gives the lure a much better presentation in the water.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Junkie4Ice on Oct 10, 2018, 07:34 AM
Spring bobbers are 100% necessary. I can't remember how many times I've out-fished guys how used noodle rods or custom rods while I'm using a cheap rod with a spring bobber. It's not just about detecting the light bites, but it gives the lure a much better presentation in the water.

That's just simply not true. And I could even argue the exact opposite. Anytime wind is factoring into the presentation of a lure takes away from my control of a lure. Which is one of the issues with spring bobbers.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: KinnickResident on Oct 10, 2018, 08:46 AM
I own and have used extensively both high quality noodle rods and high quality spring bobber rods.

Two years ago I decided to give the noodles a shot and bought both a TUCR PN and Bullwhip which will cover any panfish from 2" bluegill up to big jumbo perch. They are nice rods, no doubt about it, but neither are as sensitive or good at detecting bites as a well-made spring bobber. It's not debatable. Plus, if you live in an area where you could go from targeting light-biting bluegill with 3mm tungsten, to crappies with say a 5mm tungsten or small spoon, or perch with an even larger jig or spoon, no noodle rod is going to do all of that. They have a point where they are either over or under loaded and don't work as well. That problem is solved nicely by TUCR offering the PN and Bullwhip, but that's $230 worth of ice rods and 2 different set ups.

The absolute best combination in my opinion is a 30" St Croix Legend Black, medium light action, with both a light and medium spring bobber (they're interchangeable). With that combo you can fish anything from the tiniest panfish up to walleye, bass, and the accidental northern. Using the lightest spring I can easily load up a 3mm jig and still get it to move and indicate, and the medium spring will load up properly on larger tungsten and smaller spoons. For larger spoons and jigging raps I just either take the spring out of the grommet (on St. Croix rods they are built in, no screwing around with attaching it yourself), or leave it in and just fish through the tip eyelet only. For $80 you have a rod that will easily fish any upper midwest species and do things that a noodle can't do near as well. No being under or over loaded because your noodle rod is to stiff or whippy, no messing around with crappy aftermarket springs that you have to epoxy or attach somehow, and no carrying multiple rigs.

Noodle rods work and there are some really nice ones out there. But, they are pretty narrow in what they can do and they definitely don't cover much of the lure spectrum between models.

I guess what I'm getting at is that high-end noodle rods are like $20 swim baits for bass fisherman or in-line reels for ice fisherman...they're a youtube-driven craze that everyone has to get in on and justify their high price tag by inventing non-existent benefits. :)  Again, they work, but not as well as other cheaper and simple options. If you like having high priced gear for the sake of high priced gear by all means do it...it's a free country and I'm a capitalist. But don't try to sell Arizona swamp land by telling people they're better at catching fish, lol.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: matzilla on Oct 10, 2018, 08:51 AM
a true custom noodle rod can have a lighter tip than TUCR offers
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: stinkyfingers on Oct 10, 2018, 08:53 AM
[quote author=KinnickResident link=topic=360532.msg3861794#msg3861794 date=153917917.

I guess what I'm getting at is that high-end noodle rods are like $20 swim baits for bass fisherman or in-line reels for ice fisherman...they're a youtube-driven craze that everyone has to get in on and justify their high price tag by inventing non-existent benefits. :)  Again, they work, but not as well as other cheaper and simple options. If you like having high priced gear for the sake of high priced gear by all means do it...it's a free country and I'm a capitalist. But don't try to sell Arizona swamp land by telling people they're better at catching fish, lol.
[/quote]
Cynical. Bitter. And right on the money.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: SHaRPS on Oct 10, 2018, 08:58 AM
I stand with this guy - KinnickResident. He basically went into the details that I did not in my post. I tried noodles, I tried spring bobbers. The bobbers were a clear winner for me in the same hole with crappie and blue gills. White perch as well with their crazy strikes. For me and in my opinion with my past experiences, noodles cannot outperform a high quality spring bobber. If a noddle works for you, I wont hate, use it and enjoy it. They just are not for me and my targeted species.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: KinnickResident on Oct 10, 2018, 08:58 AM
a true custom noodle rod can have a lighter tip than TUCR offers
And that lighter custom noodle tip won't fish a large tungsten or small spoon.

You have to buy another $110 rod and carry another rig for that.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Junkie4Ice on Oct 10, 2018, 09:26 AM
And that lighter custom noodle tip won't fish a large tungsten or small spoon.

If you're looking for a rod to fish all species then no one will argue with you that a custom noodle is not the way to go. Everyone chiming in has used both noodles and spring bobbers, and it clearly comes down to preference as I would disagree with just about every opinion in your last post. Doesn't make you or I wrong, just personal preference (same with the inline reels).

I don't even consider TUCR as a custom rod company, they are nothing more than a high end rod off the shelf that had its name made by IDO. My Ace naked noodle has a more sensitive tip than the TUCR PN and I'm actually having them make me one with an even more sensitive tip and longer transition into the backbone to fit my fishing style since I rarely use anything over a 4mm and I don't care for that strong of a backbone. 

Is a noodle tip as sensitive as a wire spring bobber? No. Does that make a spring bobber better than a power noodle rod? No. Can you detect an equal amount of bites between the two? Yes, unless it is windy, then the noodle wins every time. Can a spring bobber turn your average pole into something comparable to a power noodle? Yes. Is a spring bobber better than a noodle rod? Personal preference.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Noon on Oct 10, 2018, 09:53 AM


Is a noodle tip as sensitive as a wire spring bobber? No. Does that make a spring bobber better than a power noodle rod? No. Can you detect an equal amount of bites between the two? Yes, unless it is windy, then the noodle wins every time. Can a spring bobber turn your average pole into something comparable to a power noodle? Yes. Is a spring bobber better than a noodle rod? Personal preference.

Pretty much just summed up this entire thread :)
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: IceholeHEN on Oct 10, 2018, 10:09 AM
I just skimmed through the replies but I did not see any mention of the Thorne Bros spring bobbers. I just bought a few last year at the end of the season and am looking forward to using them on my pan poles. Anyone use the Thorne Bros?
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: hnd on Oct 10, 2018, 10:49 AM
i'm sure this is just echoing some one elses comments but here goes :

spring bobbers and noodle rods have their place. 

spring bobbers : i use when the bite is very light.  For me the st croix style is the way to go.  but any straight line wire indicator will work with their various attachment methods.    for the best results you want a good stiff tip/rod.  and as someone said,  you can put an indicator on a stick and be a fish catching machine. 

noodle rods: not as sensitive obviously but the difference for me is ever so slight.  a good high end blank has no problem detecting even fish breathing on the bait.  that said, the advantages for me is less tangling as you have at times with indicators.  wind doesn't affect them as much, and the number one reason is much more jigging control.   a good spring bobber that is sensitive enough reacts to a jigging motion.  you don't get the up down motion twitch, you get more of a sweeping motion. 

In the end its all about preference.

Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: blakemohr on Oct 10, 2018, 04:09 PM
As I kind of mentioned on an earlier comment, I think the indicators are the best option for putting a minnow down and keeping it there at one depth.  It lets you see slight variations in the movement of the minnow, like when it gets nervous due to a predator being near.  Also, you see the up-bites you often get with crappies.

That said, 90% of the time I use a micro noodle rod for my jigging and hole hopping type fishing.

I do think that some days an indicator is pretty essential.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Iceassin on Oct 10, 2018, 05:18 PM
Over my 50+ years of fishing, I have run the gambit from a rod blank on a 2X2 ,cork bobbers, 6# test line... Schooley rods/reels, foam bobbers...standard reels on 24" pannie rods and Thill type floats...to where I am today. 48" Heavy rods, micro and inline reels, 2-3# test lines, 3mm tungsten jigs and...titanium wires...the biggest improvement and investment I have made in terms of terminal tackle that increased my chances to hook more fish. It took me a few years to convert from floats to wires, but I was patient and persistent. I will never use anything else.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: captain54 on Oct 10, 2018, 05:50 PM
Big lighter man,use a lot of different ones. I use one on most rods but I've been using the tickle stick for the last two years. I can honestly say I don't miss many hits.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: 52isntbigenough on Oct 11, 2018, 07:56 AM
I feel bad for OP...not only does he now have to spend 300.00 on custom noodle rods, but also has to spend 300.00 on spring bobbers.  Ice fishing is a hobby I guess.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Reinert on Oct 11, 2018, 12:48 PM
I feel bad for OP...not only does he now have to spend 300.00 on custom noodle rods, but also has to spend 300.00 on spring bobbers.  Ice fishing is a hobby I guess.
Ya I'd hope someone was going to talk me out of using the foam and spring bobber that I like to use so much but I guess I must have missed it, I fish out of a heated shanty so having them ice up isn't an issue
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Noon on Oct 11, 2018, 01:38 PM
Ya I'd hope someone was going to talk me out of using the foam and spring bobber that I like to use so much but I guess I must have missed it, I fish out of a heated shanty so having them ice up isn't an issue

A handful of people did say they were not worth my time to get them and a bunch of others talked about them icing horribly if you're not in a heated shanty. it seemed most of the people were too busy debating if wire indicators were better than noodle rods for them to even think about the foam/spring combo.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: DR.SPECKLER on Oct 11, 2018, 01:45 PM
I ditched foam bobbers years  ago,and have mostly ditched spring indicators  too.the prices on titanium indicators are pretty high considering I can get a ht ice blue rod for the same price.i now use rods with whip tips but backbone in the rest of the blank.i will use the frabill titanium on specks sometimes if its windy out.yeah I miss a few fish but I did with indicators too.i like the snitch and ice blues.no spring needed,up bites in a  shanty are easy to detect look for your line to coil or go slack.or I will sometimes put a small kink in my line and watch that to straighten out if gills are light biting that day.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: 800stealth on Oct 11, 2018, 02:33 PM
I ditched foam bobbers years  ago,and have mostly ditched spring indicators  too.the prices on titanium indicators are pretty high considering I can get a ht ice blue rod for the same price.i now use rods with whip tips but backbone in the rest of the blank.i will use the frabill titanium on specks sometimes if its windy out.yeah I miss a few fish but I did with indicators too.i like the snitch and ice blues.no spring needed,up bites in a  shanty are easy to detect look for your line to coil or go slack.or I will sometimes put a small kink in my line and watch that to straighten out if gills are light biting that day.

Exactly... pinch a kink in the line with your fingers, simple and free...
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Reinert on Oct 11, 2018, 04:46 PM
Exactly... pinch a kink in the line with your fingers, simple and free...
excellent tip!! The more you know!
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: FishGut on Oct 11, 2018, 07:18 PM
I've tried noodle rods and spring bobbers, but for my money I'll stick with a Venom adjustable float.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: HWeber on Oct 11, 2018, 07:30 PM
I'll use venoms if I'm not holding the rod. Otherwise noodle for me, a couple good ones and you can fish anything. If you build your own they're pretty dam cheap
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: wirenut45 on Oct 12, 2018, 05:19 AM
just a small tip to those who want to experiment with making your own spring bobbers. go to wallyworld or any craft store ,n, get a pair or two of round nose pliers. no teeth to   scar wire where you make the eye, especialy inside. lost several fish on one ,n, finally looked at it under a magnify,n, saw a burr that was prolly cutting my line. couldn,t feel or seeit, but there it was. wire
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: 3300 on Oct 12, 2018, 10:27 AM
you don't know what your missing if you can't tell your missing them.
neutral bites are a super tough read no matter what rod or indicator you may be using. i'll take any advantage i can for this type of bite, any thing else is much easier to know.

i used quite a few types from springs to wires, including building my own from guitar wires that just kink. so far the only ones i use now is frabill titanium wires. look for deals on them use camelcamelcamel and tell it to watch for deals for you. i bought a bunch of them for 3$ each. i pair it with 13 fishing wicked rod in 19ul. good enough to go for me. i carry six of them. one is a 24" for spoons with a quick loc tied on.

so yes is my answer to your question.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: eriksat1 on Oct 12, 2018, 12:31 PM
I'm just curious if I am the only person here who has tried the different jig weight sizes of the Marmish spring bobbers? I tried the frabil titanium and did not like it. The one size fits all is not as good.
The marmish are only $4.50 each. I like the #2, and #3.
1 / 16 ounces = 1.77 grams
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: blakemohr on Oct 12, 2018, 04:02 PM
you don't know what your missing if you can't tell your missing them.

Exactly.  You don't know what you don't know.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Dustr on Oct 12, 2018, 05:48 PM
Absolutely yes
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Dave R on Oct 12, 2018, 06:16 PM
Over my 50+ years of fishing, I have run the gambit from a rod blank on a 2X2 ,cork bobbers, 6# test line... Schooley rods/reels, foam bobbers...standard reels on 24" pannie rods and Thill type floats...to where I am today. 48" ML rods, micro and inline reels, 2-3# test lines, 3mm tungsten jigs and...titanium wires...the biggest improvement and investment I have made in terms of terminal tackle that increased my chances to hook more fish. It took me a few years to convert from floats to wires, but I was patient and persistent. I will never use anything else.

48" ML rods? You must fish in the open and do a lot of hole hopping. 

Last year, if I wasn't in my one man flip over, I fished a 28" ML rod, with a titanium spring bobber, 3# line and a spinning reel.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Hooked up on Oct 12, 2018, 06:19 PM
I have always been a line watcher. Nothing wrong with spring bobbers, but if you are using a Vexilar and watching your line you won't miss the light bites.
Title: Re: Spring Bobbers... Yes/No
Post by: Iceassin on Oct 12, 2018, 07:10 PM
48" ML rods? You must fish in the open and do a lot of hole hopping. 

Last year, if I wasn't in my one man flip over, I fished a 28" ML rod, with a titanium spring bobber, 3# line and a spinning reel.

Yup...in the open and hoppin' holes. I also have a couple of 36" Schooley Arctic Blue UL (although they fish more like a ML) set up the same as my 48" HT Ice Blue Heavies. And, like you, 3# line, 3mm tungsten jigs, titanium wires, spinning reels. If I fish in a shanty...27" Genz ML with HT in-lines ( not your higher end reels but work well for me)  ... same set up as the others. I prefer a heavier rod with the finer wire for quicker hook sets...fits my fishing style better.