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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest Forums > Gear & Maintenance > Electronics
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  #1  
Old 09-15-2009
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Wireless Depth Finder

I know this is a newbie question but are there wirelss depth finders that are any good and reasonably priced? I would love to not have to worry about running that wire.

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Joe
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Old 09-16-2009
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Take a look at http://www.tacktick.com/ But it will have some sort of wiring anyway. At least to power sensors, but this is the best system in class you'll find out there. Another possible solution are those portable instruments, take a look at Portable Wind Meter, Weather Station, Water Gauge - Hunt|Fish Electronics - Speedtech Instruments.
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Old 09-16-2009
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I think that wirelss system is a little high priced for my little boat. I have another dumb question though, I have a depth finder but it has the transom mount transducer. The guy I bought it from told me he was having trouble getting it to work reliably with it mounted inside the hull. Will it work this way or do I need one of the puck ones that is designed to be inside the hull. My boat has a lead keel, could that be interfearing with it?

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Depends on how sensor is attached to the hull. ideally it shoud be transon mounted, as it was designed for it. But you could give it a try and see how different materials impedance would affect its capability. The easiest way, is put it inside a plastic bag filled with water (oil would be beter, but messy), then put bag in contact with hull (away of keel, as it could interfere on bean if too close), resting sensor faced down to the hull. This way, you're getting reads from some different materials (water, then plastic bag, then GRP hull, then saltwater). If that prove enough, with good reading, then you could glue the sensor inside the hull, using same resin used on lamination. This way you'l.l have just one extra layer (the resin) before bean going to salt water. In other words, if this works on a bag filled with water or oil, it will work beter if glued inside. Search here for this topic and you'll find some interesting experiments.
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Old 09-17-2009
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Use epoxy to attach transducer in the place you've determined to work well. Epoxy has much better adhesive properties than polyester.
Brian
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Old 09-17-2009
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i have a humming bird fish finder/gps on my boat, i just waxed the transome mounted sensor and used gelcoat paste to "glue" it down under the settee. it works just fine, for depth and fish
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Old 09-17-2009
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Why did you wax it?
Brian
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Old 09-17-2009
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When I installed the new transducer for my Garmin earlier this seanon (after using the same water filled bag meathod to determine placment under the V berth worked well), I picked up a small bottle of ultrasound gel from a local vet's office, and poured a thick layer down (the stuff is thick enough that it doesn't run so I didn't need to dam it). I then put a very thick bead of 3M 4000 adhesive sealant (I didn't want to go quite as perminant as 5200) around the outside of the transducer down to the hull.

This works amazingly well, I get fantastic bottom resolution and very detailed returns from anything in the water below the boat, many times better then the water filled bag. The only problem is when it auto switches down from it's normal frequency (200Khz) to the lower frequency (50Khz) the clicking is rather loud inside the cabin...

I'm still going to seal a small section of PVC to the inside of the hull around the transducer and fill it with water and cap it off, but just because it should help mute the sound of the transducer in the cabin. the ultrasound jelly provides a fantastic interface against the fiberglass hull.
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Old 09-17-2009
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Thanks all, I am thinking that I am going to buy one of the puck type in hull transducers instead of trying to rig up something to work that wasn't designed for it. I am looking at a humminbird with a puck type transducer that says it's for in hull mounting. If I get that can I just glue it down or does that need to have water or some other media between it and the hull to work properly?
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Download installation manuals from your prospects instruments builders. You'll se that there is no need for water.
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