Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 10 Old 05-28-2016 Thread Starter
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Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

Thanks autocorrect for changing hull to hulk....


Hey everyone,

I'm trying to put my new garmin 44dv to use. The old autohelm unit was epoxied to the hull under the sink. I tried filling a ziplok with water and putting it on the floor on its side and put the transducer ontop of it but couldn't get a signal. Am I doing it wrong? Should the transducer be INSIDE the bag of water to "test" properly?

I am using it right beside the old transducer so the hull spot should be good. Is there a chance this type of transducer doesn't want to shoot through? I sometimes got a reading of 2ft (should be 7ft depth) but it would flicker and go back to no reading. I just need to confirm a good spot for a reading so I can epoxy it down.

At least stepping the mast went well!

Any help would be great

Some youtube videos, nothing fancy


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post #2 of 10 Old 05-28-2016
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Re: Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

The first time I tried to do this with my Garmin I had the same kind of spotty result. Then I found the auto gain setting for the sounder. When I took the sounder off auto and instead manually set the gain I got consistent and accurate readings.
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Re: Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

The problem with the plastic bag technique is that it's impossible to eliminate the air beneath the bag, thus making transmission through the hull quite difficult, especially on auto-gain. As stated above, set the unit to manual gain, crank it up and you may get better results. Additionally, moisten the hull and the plastic bag, which should help some with the transmission of the signal.

The correct transducer has no method of attaching it to a kick-up bracket, or any other kind of bracket. It's just a round transducer with a wire coming out near the top.

Good luck,

Gary
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post #4 of 10 Old 05-28-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

Great info guys thanks. I'll try the gain trick and see if it changes things. It IS a transducer made for an exterior bracket but I'm hoping to make it work anyways in hull. I dont understand it but they all come with bracket mount transducers and to buy the through hull or in hull transducers cost the same as the entire unit did in the first place.

Some youtube videos, nothing fancy


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post #5 of 10 Old 05-28-2016
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Re: Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

I think the transducer made to mount in the hull is more powerful (is that the right word?) But I used the transom mount with bracket that came with my gpsmap545s shooting through the hull of my 1984 thick hulled classic plastic bedded in plumbers putty and I can see fish and weeds. Adequate for me.
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post #6 of 10 Old 05-28-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

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Originally Posted by doggerel View Post
I think the transducer made to mount in the hull is more powerful (is that the right word?) But I used the transom mount with bracket that came with my gpsmap545s shooting through the hull of my 1984 thick hulled classic plastic bedded in plumbers putty and I can see fish and weeds. Adequate for me.
Good to hear, I bought some putty and was going to use it to make a pool for the gflex epoxy. Maybe I can use it to build a pool and fill it with water to test it too.

Some youtube videos, nothing fancy


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post #7 of 10 Old 05-29-2016
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Re: Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

I just had to top up mine with a bit more water, wasn't getting much of a reading just lots of noise.
Must have been a very small amount of air in there but it did cause me to lose depth.
Come to the conclusion that any bubbles must make a huge difference, couldn't have taken much more than a half oz to fix.
It's in an awkward location under a holding tank, have to use a turkey baster to fill...Can see it but forearms are too big to reach it.
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Re: Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

Never tried the water bag trick, but instructions I've read said put it in the bag. I had good luck putting some grease on the bottom of the transducer and then pushing it lightly into the proposed spot on the hull, twisting back and forth to make a good connection. I then epoxied the transducer in place.
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post #9 of 10 Old 05-31-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

I went back to the boat today. I tried the ziplok again to no avail. What I did was used a tub of plumbers putty and built a "pool" and filled it with water then plunked the transducer in it. The "downvu" setting pinged 6ft (the actual slip depth! ) then lost signal and went back to flashing 6ft over and over. I tried finding gain options but didn't see any. Just by chance I tried "traditional sonar" from the menu and bingo 6ft and scanning bottom nicely.

I mixed a kit of gflex, scrubbed the transducer and the hull with sandpaper, wiped with acetone, and epoxied the transducer in place and filled the "dam" with the leftover epoxy. All appears well (as long as the epoxy cures right! ) and was getting consistent readings when I left for the night.

The "downvu" style sonar from garmin may not like shooting through the hull but I will tinker with depth and settings. The important part is the other frequencies appear to work just fine!

Some youtube videos, nothing fancy


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post #10 of 10 Old 06-01-2016
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Re: Struggling to get a good image with in hulk transducer mount

Have done this install on two different boats. Cleaned the hull and transducer. Made a cone shaped pile of silicone and pressed the transducer down into it and let dry. The cone shape allows for less air trapped between hull and transducer. Both times the sensor worked perfect. And if or when it does have to be removed in future, very easy to pull apart without damaging anything.
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