Strike Indicators come in all shape, sizes and materials.  In years past, we found the same yarn used used for making yarn flies, worked great for stike indicators too.  However, we "toned down" the color selection to more natural colors with indicators.

Ove the last few years we experimented with new materials for our strike indicators.  We grew tired having to aid floatant to our indicators to keep them ridding high.  The solution - foam.  We have made the switch to a 2mm closed-cell foam.  Check out our instructions for making your own Steelhead strike indicators.

Make your own Strike Indicators:




Material needed:
thin foam, kevlar thread & bobbin, sharp scissors, forceps, and rubber O-rings

Fold over foam approx. 1 1/2" and cut off.  We recommend using two colors , layered for added visibility and floatation.

Using a pair of scissors, cut the folded foam in a "V" shape,  leaving approx. 3/16" at the bottom and 1" wide at the top.  Repeat with additional color.

Insert the O-ring over the forcepts.  NOTE: O-ring size is up to 3/8". We prefer a 3/8" (10mm). 

Combine your foam, fold one end and clamp the forceps to the tip.  Roll the O-ring over the tip toward the narrow center of the foam strip.

Once the O-ring is in the center of the foam strips, release the forceps. 

Grasp the indicator with the  forceps as pictured and make several tight wraps with your thread. Finnish with a few half hitches or a whip finish knot.  NOTE: do not wrap to tight.. The kevlar is strong enough to cut right through the foam. 

Trim your completed strike indicator so it is uniform in shape.  Sides and top.

Remember to keep your colors as natural as possible.  We prefer white with a colored center for most situations.  The wite is similar to the foam that is offen generated on the rivers.  The exception is and dawn or dusk.  Bright contrasting colors work best under these times.

Stike indicator foam

Lastly, make 2 to 3 cuts from the top towards the base of the indicator aprox. 1/2 the distance.  This will help the indicator become more visible and float upright.

That is it!  You are ready to hit the water...

indicator placement -
Two key points to help determine indicator placement.  First, consider the depth at which you will be fishing and secondly, the speed of the current. The faster the current, the higher yo will need to place your indicator. The deeper you are fishing, the higher to place the indicator.    A strategically placed strike indicator will help you stay in control of your fly. we suggest you estimate the depth you will be fishing, add approx. 2 to 3 feet  and place your indicator on the leader at this  location. We recommend a loop know to join to indicator to your leader.  This is a quick and easy method that allows you to replace, remove or reposition your indicator.

Indicator attachment -
Simply form a loop in your leader by doubling the line on itself. Next, take your strike indicator with the o-ring facing up and slide the o-ring over the loop in your leader, it is best to do this in the general area of final indicator positioned. Now flip the indicator through the leader and pull on your leader. The leader and the o-ring should look like a square knot connection. You can slide the indicator up and down depending on where you would like it.

North Shore
Weather Conditions

Silver Bay •   Lutsen

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