I'm sure you've all read or heard about spring bobbers that ice anglers employ while ice fishing. There is a whole world full of those things out there, some work great and some aren't worth anything. I pretty much have given up ice fishing with age but one item I have not given into getting rid of is my collection of Thorne Bros. spring bobbers. In the picture you'll see a spring in place on the end of one of my dock rods that see lots of crappie action at this time of year. The rod is an ultra light but the addition of this spring makes all hits very visible, even those that can softly sneak past the Nanofil line I use. Upward hits are seen immediately when the spring relaxes upward. Any other hit will move the spring down sharply. I have used these springs for many years and I don't miss very many hits while jigging the docks.
These spring went thru a whole process of discovery when they were being designed. Diameter, wire size, number of wraps per inch....you name it. It took something like two years to get these puppies dialed in to what they are today. Seen in the picture I have done a simple retro fit of the spring to the rod's tip top by using some latex tubing to snuggly hold the spring in place. The tubing on the spring makes it easy to slide the spring in and out of the tubing to adjust it for heavier or lighter jigs/baits. Wrapping electrician's tape around the tubing can adjust to larger rod tips without losing the adjustability. I know its hard to see, but the line then runs right thru the spring and to your bait. I have a 1/32 Do-It collarless head rigged with a 1.5" Do-It Thump It Grub on the line to show the spring with a load on it. The small green chartreuse bead at the end makes any movement of the spring stand out sharply against any background. The spring itself can add another dimension to jigging itself by gently bobbing a bait in a much tighter jig motion than the rod tip can offer.
For those who do the ice thing, maybe this is a spring you would like to try. For those who are on the fence as to which spring to try, maybe this is one that will shorten your search. You can get these by going to www.ThorneBros.com
. As usual, the tackle industry likes to have two distinct seasons: ice and open water. They also like you to think that the fish know the difference. When I am on the docks jigging its not unusual for a guy or two to come down and join in and many of these guys are using ice rods simply because those rods are equipped with the spring bobbers. I get uncomfortable looking at them all hunch over watching the line and the spring on those 22" rods. They look like a fox humping a football. I can stand there and everything they can and I am not appearing to be a contortionist. The jist of this is that there can be a blend of these 2 imaginary seasons reflected in your tackle and often times what works super in one venue can offer the same results outside of what its designed for. This spring bobber technology is one such instance.