Bobbers are useful for suspending your bait and sending the baited hook out further into the water. This will be your first time using a bobber, and you’re wondering where to attach it to a fishing line. Where should the bobber go?
Bobbers should be attached to a fishing line about two feet from the hook. Tie the fishing line around the bottom and top hooks of the bobber. When fishing with a bobber, it should be suspended so your hook is over any floating structures such as wood or weeds.
In this article, we’ll answer all your most burning questions about bobbers, including what they are, how to attach them to your fishing line, and which bait works best with bobbers. You won’t want to miss it!
What Is a Bobber and What Is It Used for?
Let’s start at the beginning by explaining what a bobber is. In some parts of the world, this fishing tool is known as a fishing float, but in the United States, it’s called a bobber.
Bobbers are available in every style and size under the sun. The range of materials includes everything from Indian reed to plastic, cork, balsa wood, foam, and even porcupine quills.
Types of Bobbers
Besides the range of materials, there are also several types of bobbers. Here’s an overview.
If you only attach the bobber by its bottom hook, then it’s referred to as a waggler bobber. The materials for these bobbers include reed, plastic, cane, balsa wood, and peacock quills. Waggler bobbers can be bodied or straight, and some have antennas, which is a type of insert.
Waggler bobbers work best in water depths of three to 20 feet for intermediate casting. The fish that respond most often to these bobbers are panfish, yellow perch, bluegill, crappie, and trout.
Body-less and tapered, the stick bobber is straight from one side to another. You connect the bobber to the fishing line using both its hooks. The top section of a stick bobber floats well, so it’s made of lightweight material such as balsa wood. The stem is heavier and can include a plastic, hardwood, or hard-grade cane base.
The water depth for a stick bobber should be between three and 15 feet for intermediate-distance casting. You can catch fish such as crappie, bass, or trout with a stick bobber attached to your fishing line.
Referred to as a popping cork, a popper bobber is concave at the top so it creates noise when you drag it along a river or stream. The noise is akin to a chugging sound like that which is heard when a predator fish feeds on the water’s surface. Your popping bobber might include pellets that allow it to rattle as well.
A dink bobber has a foam cylinder and then a cork cylinder atop that. The colors of the two materials will be different. You’d take your fishing line, pull it through the top of the dink bobber, and pass it through to the bottom of the bobber.
The cigar bobber is like a thicker stick bobber. It stands straight up in the water, making it hard to miss. For that reason, cigar bobbers are great bite indicators. They’re also known as self-cocking bobbers since they require no fishing line weights or shots. This explains where the name comes from.
Cigar bobbers have a long casting distance of three to 30 feet. You can reel in such catches as catfish, pike, salmon, steelhead, bass, or walleye with a cigar bobber.
Oval bobbers are cylindrical rather than skinny and long. That said, you can combine oval bobbers with stick bobbers for the best of both worlds: the oval stick bobber. An oval bobber itself can cast as little as three feet up to 20 feet. For catching catfish, pike, salmon, steelhead, and walleye, an oval bobber is an excellent choice.
Round Fixed Bobber
Even smaller than an oval bobber is a round fixed bobber. As the name implies, this bobber is meant to stay in one place once you attach it to your fishing line. It’s good for short-distance fishing between two and four feet. You can catch more crappie and trout with one of these bobbers.
The bubble bobber includes hollow, small balls that promote better fishing line control. Some bubble bobbers have water in them to dictate the level of float. You can rely on these bobbers when there’s a lot of plant growth on the surface of the water or when you’re near the reeds.
Bubble bobbers are for short-distance fishing no further than four feet. You can catch all nature of panfish with a bubble bobber as well as trout.
The Purposes of Bobbers
Why use one of the above types of bobbers, you ask? Bobbers are helpful in all sorts of everyday fishing situations, including the following.
To Reach Inaccessible Areas
We’re not recommending you go fishing anywhere illegal, but if there are areas where your hook cannot get to, a bobber can help you reach them. How? The hook with bait can float on the water current thanks to the bobber, which expands your line distance. Now you can reel in all sorts of fish.
To Suspend Your Bait
Do you want your bait to float a few inches deep in the water? With a bobber, you can create that level of precision so you can target the fish you’re after.
To Act as a Bite Indicator
How do you know when the fish are biting? Sure, sometimes you feel a pull on your fishing line, but not always. The bobber is a great bite indicator. If your bobber is sinking under the water, then you can expect that a fish is on your hook.
Where to Attach a Bobber to a Fishing Line
Are you ready to start using a bobber? The correct placement of the bobber on your fishing line is critical if you want to enjoy the abovementioned benefits. Here’s what you do.
As we stated in the intro, the distance between your hook and the bobber should be at least a foot, but we recommend two feet if you can make that work. As you start out, a #6 hook or a #8 are good options; you can branch out into other hook styles once you become more comfortable using a bobber.
The bobber will have hooks on the top and bottom. These aren’t fishing hooks, but small, enclosed metal hooks that your fishing line is meant to thread through. Depending on your bobber, both hooks might not be exposed at the same time.
You can expose the top hook by pushing a button and pressing on the bottom hook simultaneously. Doing the opposite will expose your bottom hook.
You’ll know that your bobber is in the correct location if your fishing hook is just above the bottom or over adjacent logs or weeds.
Next, you can attach your bait to your hook. Although this doesn’t involve the bobber, there are several bait rigs with a bobber that are common among anglers. These include using live bait such as a worm or a minnow.
Can You Use Artificial Bait with a Bobber?
You didn’t bring any live bait with you. Can you just use artificial bait with a bobber instead? That depends on the type of bobber you’re using.
For example, round fixed bobbers work best with natural bait since they can attract aggressive fish species. Cigar bobbers are also recommended for use with natural bait, but if you have a spinner, a spoon, or a jig, that fishing setup will work with a cigar bobber as well.
Bubble bobbers are for stealth fishing, especially with artificial lures such as flies or jigs. Waggler bobbers are jig-compatible as well, but natural bait works. Oval bobbers, oval stick bobbers, and stick bobbers are also usable with either live or artificial bait. For oval stick bobbers, try a spoon or a jig.
Bobbers are a great addition to your fishing rig since they can take your hook further in the water and act as a visible bite indicator. Now that you know that you can use bobbers with artificial and live bait alike, try the different types of bobbers and see which one delivers the best results. Good luck!