The End All Discussion On Ice Fishing Sonar / Flashers

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Tim Sandstrom's picture
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Okay, so did someone confirm LCD units have 8 or 9 degree cones? If not they are garbage unless you are a flat bottom fisherman.


 

 

Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 

 
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Tim Sandstrom Said:
Okay, so did someone confirm LCD units have 8 or 9 degree cones? If not they are garbage unless you are a flat bottom fisherman.

I have the LX-7 and it has a dual beam transducer, 8 and 20.

 -}}}}}--------------->>>

Ice fishermen are simple creatures, they just need a hole and their pole

 

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And how does an LCD screen and transducer tell you what direction the fish are?


 

 

Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 

 
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Frosty,

I am talking the lowrance route.


 

 

Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 

 
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 Gotcha ya Tim, my bad.

 -}}}}}--------------->>>

Ice fishermen are simple creatures, they just need a hole and their pole

 

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Tim Sandstrom Said:
Okay, so did someone confirm LCD units have 8 or 9 degree cones? If not they are garbage unless you are a flat bottom fisherman.

Direct from Humminbird website:

ICE 385 and 345

DualBeam PLUS w/Switchfire

  • 200 kHz / 20° @ -10db
  • 83 kHz / 60° @ -10db
  • Depth: 1000 ft.

Direct from Lowrance website:

KEY LOWRANCE ELITE-5 ICE FISHING FEATURES:

  • Super-bright, 5 in./12.7 cm TFT color display, with 480x480 pixel resolution, and superb no-fade viewing detail in sunlight and temps down to -20° F/-28° C
  • Powerful 200 kHz operation with 20° sonar coverage down to 1000 ft/305 m with custom, weighted ice fishing transducer and unique new float system (included)
  • Precision internal 16-channel GPS antenna, built-in basemap with U.S. waters detail, and microSD card slot for LakeMaster®* and Navionics® cartography options

J

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 Can one of you Lowrance guys give me the down low on the difference between the following units:

  • HDS-5
  • Elite-5
  • Elite-5 dsi

I've done a little research but haven't gotten very far. I thought it might be more productive for one of you guys who know these units to chime in.

Oh and I'm referring to the original topic of how they would compare ice fishing first and foremost, boat secondary.

J

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If I am reading correctly you have a 20 or a 60. Not good for me at all. If this technology ever has a future for me in ice fishing they gotta do some changes on the lowrance side.


 

 

Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 

 
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tim, you can't see what direction the fish are.  maybe sidescan and/or downscan can do that.  i don't know.  i know a few of the older units had options for different cone angle transucers for skimmers.  ain't sure bout ice ducers and ain't sure bout the newer ones.  mine have both had 20 degree cones and i believe that is the only degree that lowrances ice ducers come in. 

here is the gereral rule of thumb i have always used using round numbers based on some basic geometry:

for an 8 degree cone at any depth, simply divide that depth by 7. For instance, at a depth of 21 feet, the diameter of the circle of coverage would be 3 feet.  for a 20 degree cone, divide the depth by 3.  at the same depth of 21 feet, a 20 degree cone covers a circle 7 feet in diameter.   so, if you are fishing 21 feet deep, for it to really come into play, you would have to have a substantial difference in contour change occurring w/in the 7 foot coverage zone that does not occur within the 3 foot coverage zone.  personally i don't fish many spots where that would come into play.  sure i might fish the top of a hump or next to a ledge.  but, very seldom am i right on top of a ledge or hump that is so defined that the dead zone would be huge w/ my 20 degree cone and not w/ an 8 degree cone.  its even less of a difference when talking 9, 12 and 19 degree cone angles. 

http://vexilar.com/pages/support/support_tips/article_006.php

the above like has a chart w/ cone angles and coverage at each depth.  one thing to keep in mind is that you can kind of adjust your angle by turning down the sensitivity and/or gain.  graph units can have the sensitivity turned down quite a bit.  frankly, i've just learned to accept this one potential con because the potential for it mattering is so slight and it is highly outweighed by all of the pros.  and on thing to keep in mind is that, if you are a "flat bottom fisherman", there are actually some advantages to the bigger cone.
 
regardless, i knew this would be an issue w/ you from the time you posted this thread based upon past discussions bout this exact same thing with you.  so, just quit kicking the darn can around and have him get a flasher. 

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All I can tell you is I see the geometry first hand. Threw 20 away and got a nine. My geometry issues got much less.

Also, on flat bottom country like lake darling a wide cone was bad for picking up weeds. Basically did same thing as a big degree in deep water. Using tighter cone I didn't pick up too much weeds.

Ya right now a flasher or other dedicated LCD ice unit makes more sense for structure and weed fishing.

Get the tri beam and be good to go.


 

 

Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 

 
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I think if you want to fish like a man you should just have a spear...andddd big hole...

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and i still can't get my stupid video off of my phone.  tried the youtube app... just keeps waiting and retrying.  also tried using my wife's facebook account... it looks like it uploads.  but, when it gets to 100% it sits there for a while and then starts over.  don't have a cord to get it to my computer and the network says its too large to load straight from my phone.  anyone got any bright ideas? 

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espringers Said:
and i still can't get my stupid video off of my phone.  tried the youtube app... just keeps waiting and retrying.  also tried using my wife's facebook account... it looks like it uploads.  but, when it gets to 100% it sits there for a while and then starts over.  don't have a cord to get it to my computer and the network says its too large to load straight from my phone.  anyone got any bright ideas? 

droid?

J

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espringers Said:
and i still can't get my stupid video off of my phone.  tried the youtube app... just keeps waiting and retrying.  also tried using my wife's facebook account... it looks like it uploads.  but, when it gets to 100% it sits there for a while and then starts over.  don't have a cord to get it to my computer and the network says its too large to load straight from my phone.  anyone got any bright ideas? 

ask one of your kids, preferably one that is under the age of 12 they will figure it out in no time

Neat

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Yeah. Droid. Trying mobile fishing buddy to see if that has other options. Can't even get a darn pic loaded from the phone.

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well... i got some photos loaded at least.  video loading closes my browser.  didn't mean for all of them to show up in the photos section.  thought they would just be in my private album and i could link them to this thread.  but, oh well... sorry for filling up the photos section w/ such boring pics. 

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can you email it? 

espringers Said:
Yeah. Droid. Trying mobile fishing buddy to see if that has other options. Can't even get a darn pic loaded from the phone.

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nope.  too large for any of my accounts to accept it.  i'll try get it to my home computer tonight.  think i've got a cord lying around someplace.  thanks tho. 

Born to hunt and fish... Forced to work!

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Tim Sandstrom Said:
All I can tell you is I see the geometry first hand. Threw 20 away and got a nine. My geometry issues got much less.

Also, on flat bottom country like lake darling a wide cone was bad for picking up weeds. Basically did same thing as a big degree in deep water. Using tighter cone I didn't pick up too much weeds.

Ya right now a flasher or other dedicated LCD ice unit makes more sense for structure and weed fishing.

Get the tri beam and be good to go.

The FL-20 and FL-22 both have Low Power modes for fishing very weedy areas. With a Tri-Beam set at 8 degrees and on low power mode, you shouldn't have issues at all.

I'm tellin ya man, forget all this graph nonsense and go with an FL-20 with a Tri-Beam 'ducer. It's the best all-around package for what you're gonna be using it for.



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Pick,

Yeah I know. Vex fam myself. Just really wish they would stuck digital depth read. Call me lazy I guess. Ha.

I run a fl 12 with 9 degree. It same size as tri so not much of change for line wrap. Up to my bro at this point.


 

 

Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 

 
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Vexilar for this guy. I just got my new FL-20 Ultrapak in the mail today just in time for Winnipeg next week.  I used and abused an FL-8 for the last nine years and it still works fine but it was time for an upgrade.  Now I don't have to share with the girlfriend anymore.

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sdwxman Said:
This is what we all need....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bsOGUx7O3nk&feature=player_embedded

I wonder when the fish are going to start coming in with white flags? lol

I have a fever...and the only prescription...is more walleyes!!

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JIM C Said:

I’ll start by saying that ANY sonar is better than NO sonar.

But the reality is that the mechanical flasher has been technologically dead ever since the first color TFT LCD screens were introduced.  It's over. 

 

I know that some guys will continue to use them as long as they are available and still working, and that's OK.  But those flasher systems and the spinning wheel display format, cannot compete with what a good LCD screen can tell you about what is happening beneath you in open water or under the ice.  Not many guys use a flasher in a boat anymore, and there is good reason for it.  Ice sonar will inevitably go the same way. 

Technically a flasher is not capable of displaying the information that an LCD screen can, and the graph style screen and format are far more capable.  Think about the detail in a 2D sonar image on a color graph, not to mention the downscan or sidescan images.  And the ability to adjust every parameter of the display, not just designate a couple of ranges or turn the gain up or down.  And today Humminbird is announcing a 360 degree circular side scanning transducer that will show you an image of up to 300' away from the transducer.  Now imagine taking something like that up to the mud flats on Lake Winnipeg and using it to look for fish under the ice, etc.  That kind of information can't be displayed on mechanical spinning wheel.  The technology will get cheaper and most of us will embrace it.

At one time you may have thought your old Sony CRT Trinitron was one heck of a good TV, but it really can't compare to what we have in flat panel TV’s today.  The immediate future is pixels...and it’s going to happen faster than some of you might think.

Jim Carroll NPAA #13 



That is probably one of the most bold statements I have heard in a long time. I'd have to disagree. While graphs obviously have their place, use in extreme cold and ice fishing conditions in my opinion is not it.

The flasher IS the answer for ice. Not to put anybodys style down, but that pic of the lowrance 68 looked like an absolute mess for ice fishing applications. What good does a historical record provide you on your graph in an ice application? All it becomes is screen clutter. 

I'm also gonna bet that Vexilar and Marcums sales of sonars would beg to differ with your statement. If the graph was the answer, I wonder why it has not yet caught on after 10 years of color screen exposure on the market. Could it be that most ice anglers dont recognize the graph as a beneficial tool that some claim it to be? Maybe coupled with a practical transducer that gives the user a little more control over the survey area could enhance its use. I however dont buy it. For one thing, as a previous salesman of graphs, (and I dealt with LOTS) I know first hand the durability in the graph products cant hold a candle to that of a flasher.

What I believe is both products have their place. Both have advantages/disadvantages in either season but to claim that flashers are obsolete is pushing the envelope a bit far.

Stick with a flasher for ice. You wont be disappointed.


This is my BOOMSTICK!!!

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Lol. Pigsticker... Funny you should mention that jumbled mess. Do u realize that u would have the same jumbled mess on a flasher? And the ONLY way to make sense of it all and have any idea how many fish are actually down there and tell how each fish is reacting is w a graph? If u were looking at 12 perch stacked up in 10 ft of water on your flasher all doing something different you would just have a clusterfuck of flashing lights where it would b impossible to count the number of fish and be able to get a feel for what each is doing and/ or did. Where u see a "jumbled" mess, seasoned graph users see a symphony of little fish all doing their own dance to the beat of a jigging lure. Keep your flasher.

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Is it necessary to Be able count 12 perch below you?

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bowhunter_24 Said:
Is it necessary to Be able count 12 perch below you?

bingo! I would argue if you have perch stacked up 10 feet from the bottom there pretty willing to bite regardless what sonar you use. When u get perch to follow the ones your catching up, its pretty much game over for them

 

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No. But pigsticker was digging the jumbled mess on a graph. I was just explaining a flasher would have the same mess... Only that mess would b much harder to interpret.

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Digging.... Dogging. Damn phone.

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espringers Said:
No. But pigsticker was digging the jumbled mess on a graph. I was just explaining a flasher would have the same mess... Only that mess would b much harder to interpret.

I dont think its any harder to interpret....so you have a solid block of red/orange from the bottom up ten feet...means there are a whole stack of fish down there and i wouldnt really care if it were 8 or 12 or 35...so just drop your jig back into the solid block of red and wait for the thump...seems alot easier to me...

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