Why do people still use depth sounders? - SailNet Community
 110Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 125 Old 09-01-2014 Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 678
Thanks: 28
Thanked 27 Times in 25 Posts
Rep Power: 8
 
Why do people still use depth sounders?

I haven't ran aground in 27 years, the last time I did I had a depth sounder. Since then I have been using a lead line although I really don't use it that often. Sure there are forward facing sonars but I doubt many of us have those. So with all the excellent charts and charting devices we have these days is there really any reason to cut another hole in your hull? It seems like a depth sounder is really only good for telling you what you just hit but my guess is by that point you don't need an electrical device to inform you that you are hard aground or sinking.
barefootnavigator is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 125 Old 09-01-2014
Senior Member
 
rhr1956's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Heath, TX
Posts: 490
Thanks: 1
Thanked 10 Times in 10 Posts
Rep Power: 10
 
Re: Why do people still use depth sounders?

They provide something to look at and sometimes they give reason to have a conversation of impending peril.
paikea likes this.
rhr1956 is offline  
post #3 of 125 Old 09-01-2014
Senior Member
 
flandria's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Near Georgian Bay, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 213
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 8
 
Dock
Re: Why do people still use depth sounders?

When you are using a chart plotter/GPS instrument, you likely need not to refer to depth all that much. I do still use the depth meter to double check depth that is supposed to be under the keel - since (rarely) there can be a GPS error, or (more likely) a chart error (where I sail some charts have not been updated since first plotted in the late 1800s...). When the GPS/chartplotter relies on an incorrect chart, it is prudent to have something else to help you out.

I do rely on the depth meter when anchoring to determine required scope as well as to assist in ensuring that I have sufficient swing room.

Of course you can do all this with a lead line, but I doubt that is very practical when you are about to set anchor - that little gadget does the job just fine.

Now, all of this is true so long as you have electricity to power your electronics, and electronics that work... but that is another chapter in the Book of Purists.

Last edited by Donna_F; 09-01-2014 at 03:48 PM.
flandria is offline  
 
post #4 of 125 Old 09-01-2014
One of None
 
deniseO30's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Bristol pa
Posts: 8,044
Thanks: 85
Thanked 193 Times in 181 Posts
Rep Power: 15
   
Re: Why do people still use depth sounders?

Why do people still use depth sounders? = to ease the surprise of running aground!

"Next best thing to not having a boat? The knowledge from having one!" Denise, Bristol PA, On Tidal Delaware River, Anchor Yacht Club.
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

My last project!
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
deniseO30 is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to deniseO30 For This Useful Post:
Nancyleeny (09-04-2014)
post #5 of 125 Old 09-01-2014
Just A Member
 
Dick6969's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Posts: 32
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Rep Power: 0
 
Re: Why do people still use depth sounders?

To see how deep it is... Mine is broke but when it did work I liked it.
jppp and Brent Swain like this.

Pearson 323 Hull #89 (Frayed Knot)
Dick6969 is offline  
post #6 of 125 Old 09-01-2014
Senior Member
 
Irunbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Tampa, Fl
Posts: 347
Thanks: 12
Thanked 10 Times in 9 Posts
Rep Power: 12
 
Re: Why do people still use depth sounders?

I just delivered my boat (~5'1" draft) down a part of the ICW from Savannah to the Thunderbolt boatyard and part of the channel that meanders through the two rivers narrowed down to maybe 50 yards, and I have zero local knowledge of that area. I was going solely on my plotter telling me where it thought I was and avoiding the shallows by keeping an eye on depth. In that area, to me, knowing depth trends was pretty valuable.
Irunbird is offline  
post #7 of 125 Old 09-01-2014
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 3,028
Thanks: 1
Thanked 46 Times in 45 Posts
Rep Power: 14
 
Re: Why do people still use depth sounders?

Charts, plotters can be accurate and useful, Until a major hurricane, or storm comes through and changes everything. Since Sandy, my depth sounder has probably been the most useful instrument on the boat.

Last edited by tempest; 09-01-2014 at 07:08 PM.
tempest is online now  
post #8 of 125 Old 09-01-2014
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 566
Thanks: 0
Thanked 20 Times in 19 Posts
Rep Power: 11
 
Re: Why do people still use depth sounders?

Congratulations on not running aground in all those years. You must know your local waters well.

I rarely day sail with GPS or chartplotter on. I, too, know my local waters fairly well. In most cases I stay away from thin water. However, there are times when I am cutting some of those corners on a tack and I like to know if I am flirting too much with the bottom. The depth sounder tells me that, and usually in those cases a lead line would do me no good. I find it a great tool when making sure I find the deepest part of a strange channel as well.
Brent Swain and Nancyleeny like this.
tomandchris is offline  
post #9 of 125 Old 09-01-2014
Irrationally Exuberant
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 1,400
Thanks: 11
Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts
Rep Power: 13
 
Re: Why do people still use depth sounders?

Obviously asked by someone who doesn't sail in the Chesapeake Bay! We sail where we sometimes have less than a foot under the keel. Depth sounder is less expensive than using the keel as a feeler

And as others stated, no reason to put a hole in your hull--a shoot thru transducer works for most boats.

Tom K

2000 Beneteau 331
Northern Chesapeake Bay

Ambition is a poor excuse for not having enough sense to be lazy ~ Steven Wright
arf145 is offline  
post #10 of 125 Old 09-01-2014
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: St. Augustine Florida
Posts: 220
Thanks: 0
Thanked 10 Times in 10 Posts
Rep Power: 12
 
Re: Why do people still use depth sounders?

Onboard True Blue we not only have a depth sounder but we have another one for backup. Most important gauge on the boat for both safety and peace of mind.
jrd22 likes this.
mitchbrown is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.


User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in











Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Depth sounders johnharch Pacific Seacraft 15 07-08-2012 10:36 PM
Forward looking depth sounders/sonars lshick Electronics 8 07-11-2010 09:34 AM
Depth Sounders yippeekayay Gear & Maintenance 3 07-21-2009 10:50 PM
In Hull Depth Sounders llsnpk Gear & Maintenance 16 03-04-2009 09:59 PM
Transducers (for depth sounders) Spencer28 Gear & Maintenance 1 08-01-2007 07:12 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome