I don't tie one on. I use either a "Tip Top" which is a small tube that I thread on the leader before tying on flies. Plus the tube can be slid up on to
the loop of line leader and stays there if I want to switch to a dry.
I also use slip indicators that have a plastic peg the is put on before flies.
Other ones I use are "Thingamabobbers" That are plastic air filled balls in different sizes that have a little hole in the bottom. Like yarn indicators, you fold the leader in half, stick it through the hole, then loop the line over the Thingamabobber or yarn and tighten.
Also the small styro indicators that have a slit in the side. Stick the leader in the slit then use a small piece of a toothpick.
Don't forget the styro indicators with the same slit plus they are two sections with a rubber band in the middle. Lay the leader in the slit then twist the two sections in opposite directions.
PLUS Strike putty. like playdough. Make a ball and squish it on your line. That stuff is great for helping to fling out tiny flies, but sometimes hard to get off the leader completely, will stain, and hard as a rock in the cold.
I recently tried a dry-dropper rig, tying the tippet to leader with a double surgeon's knot and leaving a long enough tag end to tie a big bushy dry onto that knot, with a nymph at the very end of the tippet. I didn't get any hits on the dry fly, but it worked so well as an indicator to convince me that I need to do a rig like that more often for nymphing. However, when I changed to a streamer rig, I'd cut off the dry fly and shorten that original tag end. So I was thinking, either I tie on a new tippet each time I switch to a nymph rig, or I figure out how to tie an indicator on a bight, maybe...
If I'm short line nymphing I use those colored styrofoam beads, I keep about a half dozen on a doubled up peice of about 10# mono. To put one on the leader I double up the leader & put the loop in the loop that the beads are on & pull the loop thru the bead. Then I put a small piece of rubber band in the loop on the bead & pull it just thru the bead so the rubber band is tight on the leader. You can slide up & down according to depth as you move along the river. The beads will hold a fairly large nymph just off the bottom & with some mending you can get a fairly long drift. I usually roll or water cast or just flip it upstream as the bead isn't too aerodynamic. Did I drive everyone loopy????
FISHN50, thank you. You just answered a question I had. I bought some small beads and was trying to remember how to attach them.
I bought some of those tiny Frogs Hair indicators to find out they don't go over knots at all. But I think I will try to make the hole a little bigger and try this.
plland, I get you now. I too like to tie on a longer tippet in a "Y" sort of connection with one side longer. Recently I read somewhere, I tie on tippet to the leader, but then up on the leader, I tie a tag on the same way you would tie a dropper off the bend of the hook. This allows the tag to be slid up or down. And the knot for the leader/tippet keep it from sliding all the way down. Now the leader is untouched. You can just clip the tag off.
Now, I tie as you do, a big dry or I can tie a styro ball (put the tippet threw the ball and loop it around and tie if off like a loop knot on a fly)
I see no one mentioned yarn indicators so I will put in my two cents. I like yarn indicators and tie them on the leader with a knot used to put a loop in your leader. I only use a single over hand wrap so the loop slips down onto the yarn. I like yarn because you can make it any size and any color. They float well and look some what natural on the water in white. I seldom adjust the position on the leader so the knot is not a problem. That is one draw back with yarn. If you pull your loop real tight in the butt section of the leader, it will leave wrinkles in the leader when you undo the knot. Since I don't move it much that is not a problem for me. I also soak my yarn over night in HydroStop and they float forever.
There are some yarn indicators with a little "O" ring and you loop through the O ring to hold the indicator in place. Most of the O rings are too large for me.
I have never been a fan of yarn. It DOES get water logged specially in fast water. Very wind resistant. I don't care for the kink they put in the leader either although the Tinkgamabobbers can too.
I braved it and went out to fish the pond today. Windy is an understatement, and COLD, after an hour I could feel my fingers anymore (course I was not really dressed for it due to the fact YESTERDAY was in the upper 70's)
I knew this storm was coming with the morning starting out at 50 with a projected 20 degree drop this afternoon. It did!
Because of the wind, I dug around and found my STRIKE PUTTY. It literally saved the day. I was able to rollcast out 30' to 40' with ease.
I caught a bunch today in an hour. At times one every cast. Chironomids at 5' and 6'. Cool thing was, fish were hitting the Strike Putty. Must be all the power bait they see;-)
AND, it happened again. Two flies, two different colors and size, two different depths and BAM! two fish at the same time. LOVE IT!
Sorry Frank, I know the yarn has been around forever and a lot of the pro's love them, I just never cared for them. I have used them however and still have some for emergencies.