Fish Finders

gt

Active Member
with 22 years as captain of my own vessels, sonar is a critical tool. i also 'discovered' CHIRP sonar and added that as a second unit. i could actually see the air bladders on halibut lying on the bottom, truly amazing. don't have a clue about portable or small units for freshwater fishing.
 

cdnred

Active Member
I found a Garmin Striker Plus 9sv Sonar/GPS Combo on sale at Cabelas for $499. I looks to be what I'd like to get since it's got a large 9" easy to read screen. The screen size becomes an issue as we age. I'm planning to use it with my Sea Eagle 285 Pro inflatable. The issue that I find missing, is that it doesn't come with or is compatible for preloaded maps. How important is having preloaded maps for going out fishing..? This unit does read bottom structure, has side scanning capability, records speed, water temp readings and allows for setting up way point hot spots. Is having preloaded mapping, a make or break deal maker..? I realize that it's a bit on the pricey side but doesn't allow for mapping, would still it worth getting..?


The other option I was looking at was the Lowrance Hook2 5 TripleShot US/Canada Navionics+ Map Bundle Fisherfinder/Chartplotter Combo at Cabelas for $429 regular price.


Of the two choices, which do you feel would be the best to get..?
 
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Krusty

Huge Erect Member
WFF Supporter
I found a Garmin Striker Plus 9sv Sonar/GPS Combo on sale at Cabelas for $499. I looks to be what I'd like to get since it's got a large 9" easy to read screen. The screen size becomes an issue as we age. I'm planning to use it with my Sea Eagle 285 Pro inflatable. The issue that I find missing, is that it doesn't come with or is compatible for preloaded maps. How important is having preloaded maps for going out fishing..? This unit does read bottom structure, has side scanning capability, records speed, water temp readings and allows for setting up way point hot spots. Is having preloaded mapping, a make or break deal maker..? I realize that it's a bit on the pricey side but doesn't allow for mapping, would still it worth getting..?


The other option I was looking at was the Lowrance Hook2 5 TripleShot US/Canada Navionics+ Map Bundle Fisherfinder/Chartplotter Combo at Cabelas for $429 regular price.


Of the two choices, which do you feel would be the best to get..?
You might consider getting one of the very affordable Garmin Striker 4 units, so you can decide which features you really care about acquiring in a much more costly unit. Crisp bright display, user friendly menus, and seems to be quite durable. I now use one on my fishing kayaks, with the Scotty adjustable transducer mount (allows easy transfer from kayak to kayak), and a YakAttack adjustable mount for the fish finder unit that allows flexible adjustment for visibility.

I fish small lakes, most of which are not in the mapping libraries (I think lake contour bathymetry is sort of fascinating). Even low end fish finders generally possess GPS, and allow you to mark a spot of potential future interest.

At least now I get to see the fish I'm not catching, despite my best (but apparently inept) efforts.
 
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IveofIone

Active Member
WFF Supporter
I found a Garmin Striker Plus 9sv Sonar/GPS Combo on sale at Cabelas for $499. I looks to be what I'd like to get since it's got a large 9" easy to read screen. The screen size becomes an issue as we age. I'm planning to use it with my Sea Eagle 285 Pro inflatable. The issue that I find missing, is that it doesn't come with or is compatible for preloaded maps. How important is having preloaded maps for going out fishing..? This unit does read bottom structure, has side scanning capability, records speed, water temp readings and allows for setting up way point hot spots. Is having preloaded mapping, a make or break deal maker..? I realize that it's a bit on the pricey side but doesn't allow for mapping, would still it worth getting..?


The other option I was looking at was the Lowrance Hook2 5 TripleShot US/Canada Navionics+ Map Bundle Fisherfinder/Chartplotter Combo at Cabelas for $429 regular price.


Of the two choices, which do you feel would be the best to get..?
I believe you are overthinking this. Both of the units that you mention are more suited for hard sided boats with a big motor that can speed from one site to the next and use GPS to locate a favorite spot. In a kick boat that goes maybe 2 mph most of the features you deem as important are just overkill. It sounds like the gadget-ridden models demand a lot of attention, time that would be better spent on fishing. Having been fishing since 1946 and fly fishing since 1951 the verdict is in-time spent fishing is the greatest tool you will ever have. No electronic gizmo can short circuit actual time on the water with rod in hand.

Living in lake country I spend about 95% of my fishing time on stillwater spread between 3 boats. I can afford any depthfinder I want and the one I want is the simplest thing I can get with the fewest buttons and the lowest price. A $150 depthfinder will tell you more than you'll ever need to know about lake fishing.

Beware of the OHSA Cowboy syndrome.
 

cdnred

Active Member
I was reading in an older forum post that a "12v 10 watt solar panel" mounted on a tube would be sufficient enough to power a fish finder without reliance on a battery for power. I'm looking at a fish finder that has a current draw @ 12V: 0.75A Has anyone ever tried this approach that knows whether this is factual or not..?
 

Speyrod GB

Active Member
You might consider getting one of the very affordable Garmin Striker 4 units, so you can decide which features you really care about acquiring in a much more costly unit. Crisp bright display, user friendly menus, and seems to be quite durable. I now use one on my fishing kayaks, with the Scotty adjustable transducer mount (allows easy transfer from kayak to kayak), and a YakAttack adjustable mount for the fish finder unit that allows flexible adjustment for visibility.
Just curious about how you have the Garmin mounted. Is it on the top rail, or is the Garmin mounted below the rail? The T-track on my Nucanoe is below the rail. How tall is the YakAttack amount? How does it compare to the Scotty fish finder mount?

I have used an extender for a Scotty mount for an anchor bracket. The extender had a tendency to move when raising the anchor. I might just have to hard mount that one.

Thinking about the portable combo unit as well.
 

IveofIone

Active Member
WFF Supporter
To power your depth finder the best bet seems to be 5 AH SLA batteries that weigh about 3# apiece. They can be bought singly for about $15 or in pairs for about $25. They are small-about 3'' x 4'' x 4''and are easy to locate on a tube or 'toon. A solar panel will only work if it receives adequate sunlight and has to be mounted just right in order to function. I find that the batteries last at least a couple of days on a charge and carry 4 of them in my rig when camping and fishing.

Bear in mind that the solar power doesn't go directly to the depth finder but instead must go to a battery which stores the power. And may also require a charge controller to prevent overcharging the battery. Again, not a big deal on a hard sided boat with lots of room but if you can get more dependable results from $25 worth of batteries why would you want to screw around with a solar panel and possibly a charge controller?

Another option is lithium ion batteries and a few are starting to make an appearance in outdoor equipment. A LI battery equivalent to the SLA batteries I mentioned above will probably weigh just over a pound and cost $75-$90. They last longer than the sealed lead acid batteries and can be discharged far more while still remaining effective. The only drawback right now is the cost. A 100 ah lithium battery-the size often used for a trolling motor-cost about $900 right now.
 

Krusty

Huge Erect Member
WFF Supporter
Just curious about how you have the Garmin mounted. Is it on the top rail, or is the Garmin mounted below the rail? The T-track on my Nucanoe is below the rail. How tall is the YakAttack amount? How does it compare to the Scotty fish finder mount?

I have used an extender for a Scotty mount for an anchor bracket. The extender had a tendency to move when raising the anchor. I might just have to hard mount that one.

Thinking about the portable combo unit as well.
The YakAttack FF mount (with the Garmin mount attached) is about a foot long. Articulated system so very adjustable. The tracs on my Ocean Predator are mounted on the center console.

The transducer head is mounted on a Scotty arm, adjustable for length, and attached to the kayaks via the standard Scotty base. The transducer is small, relatively hydrodynamic, weighs very little, and puts insignificant strain on the Scotty base. Doesn't need any beefing up.

On my other three fishing kayaks I've replicated the same setup with appropriately mounted short tracs from YakAttack and Scotty mounts for the Scotty transducer arm.

For me the combo unit would take up too much space.
 
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cdnred

Active Member
To power your depth finder the best bet seems to be 5 AH SLA batteries that weigh about 3# apiece. They can be bought singly for about $15 or in pairs for about $25. They are small-about 3'' x 4'' x 4''and are easy to locate on a tube or 'toon. A solar panel will only work if it receives adequate sunlight and has to be mounted just right in order to function. I find that the batteries last at least a couple of days on a charge and carry 4 of them in my rig when camping and fishing.

Bear in mind that the solar power doesn't go directly to the depth finder but instead must go to a battery which stores the power. And may also require a charge controller to prevent overcharging the battery. Again, not a big deal on a hard sided boat with lots of room but if you can get more dependable results from $25 worth of batteries why would you want to screw around with a solar panel and possibly a charge controller?

Another option is lithium ion batteries and a few are starting to make an appearance in outdoor equipment. A LI battery equivalent to the SLA batteries I mentioned above will probably weigh just over a pound and cost $75-$90. They last longer than the sealed lead acid batteries and can be discharged far more while still remaining effective. The only drawback right now is the cost. A 100 ah lithium battery-the size often used for a trolling motor-cost about $900 right now.
Good point, the "5 AH SLA batteries" seem to be the best and cheapest option for me with the least amount of mod's.. Thanks for the tips.. :D
 

veilside180sx

Active Member
1583510753450.png

This is the battery I use in my kayak.

BATTERY TYPE: 12 Volt AGM 7 Amp Hour sealed lead acid battery with T1 terminal is rechargeable, SLA battery. 3. 72x 5. 94x 2. 56

I've had it on about a dozen 1/2-full day trips with a Garmin Striker 4 and have yet to need to even charge it.
 

Jeremy Floyd

Veðrfölnir
View attachment 228927 This is the battery I use in my kayak.

BATTERY TYPE: 12 Volt AGM 7 Amp Hour sealed lead acid battery with T1 terminal is rechargeable, SLA battery. 3. 72x 5. 94x 2. 56

I've had it on about a dozen 1/2-full day trips with a Garmin Striker 4 and have yet to need to even charge it.
I have a handful of those, from the emergency lighting at mills. They have to replace them annually, and they get rid of all the old ones that work perfectly.
 

Randall Clark

Huge Fly Guy
whelp, just ordered a Garmin Striker 4 along with one of those 12V batteries. Hell, it's gotta be quite a bit better than my little iBobber, plus I won't be draining my battery on my phone (iBobber syncs with your phone). Ended up spending not a ton more than what the little iBobber cost by itself. Should work pretty damn well for my Commander.
 

NW_flyfisher

if it's not this, then what?
whelp, just ordered a Garmin Striker 4 along with one of those 12V batteries. Hell, it's gotta be quite a bit better than my little iBobber, plus I won't be draining my battery on my phone (iBobber syncs with your phone). Ended up spending not a ton more than what the little iBobber cost by itself. Should work pretty damn well for my Commander.
I first bought the iBobber several years agoIt was better than nothing for depths. 2 years ago I purchased the Garmin Striker 4 and I really like it. I mount it to my pontoon boat and the Garmin Striker came with mounting straps.
 

Randall Clark

Huge Fly Guy
I first bought the iBobber several years agoIt was better than nothing for depths. 2 years ago I purchased the Garmin Striker 4 and I really like it. I mount it to my pontoon boat and the Garmin Striker came with mounting straps.
Nice!

I'm stoked to get it. Sunday might be the last trip with the iBobber (at least on the Commander---probably use it on the float tube elsewhere).
 

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