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sconnie84
member (28)member
  
02/10/2024 09:40AM  
I am looking into buying a portable fish finder for fishing in the BWCA. I typically rent a canoe for my trips. Is a fish finder doable in a rental canoe where I wouldn't be able to mount anything to the canoe? If so, which models do you recommend?

 
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02/10/2024 11:21AM  
If your transducer sits flat, just rest it on the floor of the canoe and dribble water around it. Works for my Vexilar but it's an ice-ducer with a flat bottom. Shoots right through the hull. No drag and no noise.
 
02/10/2024 11:53AM  
I'm not sure if you are concerned about the unit or the transducer. Set the unit in the floor of the canoe and attach the transducer over the side with a suction cup.
 
mudhen
member (23)member
  
02/10/2024 12:03PM  
I run a older model gen 2 helix 5 with a ram mount setup over the edge of the canoe for the transducer. Have also used the ice ducer for shooting through the hull of the canoe. Either works and is very portable and easy to disassemble.
 
nooneuno
distinguished member(629)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
  
02/10/2024 03:43PM  
mudhen: "I run a older model gen 2 helix 5 with a ram mount setup over the edge of the canoe for the transducer. Have also used the ice ducer for shooting through the hull of the canoe. Either works and is very portable and easy to disassemble."


what battery do you use for the helix five and how many hours of runtime do you get from it?
 
moosedoggie
distinguished member (197)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
  
02/10/2024 04:18PM  
I run a Hummingbird Piranahmax 4 and have a suction cup mount for the transducer.
 
02/10/2024 08:56PM  
Do you know what sort of features you are looking for in a fish finder? I would recommend foregoing some of the newer technologies such as side scan and forward facing sonar(livescope). While these technologies can be very effective, they require bigger screens to be effective and bigger screens draw more power. The Garmin Striker units are very popular with paddlers as it has a smaller 3.5" screen, so it is one of the most power efficient units currently on the market. If you don't mind searching second hand units on Marketplace or wherever, it is hard beat the old B&W units that went out of production some 14+ years ago, such as the Lowrance X-4 or Eagle Cuda or Humminbird Piranah(max). Personally, I run a Lowrance Hook 4 unit, which also gives me chart plotter(GPS) functionality.


Years ago when I had a smooth sided aluminum canoe, I used a suction cup to attach my transducer, which worked fairly well but it does make a bit of noise and you can sometimes forget to remove it while landing, which could damage it. Some folks use a arm type mount over the side of the canoe to hold the transducer in the water. Shooting your transducer through the hull of your Kevlar or fiberglass canoe does have it's advantages, if it is feasible for your particular canoe. You will need to check the canoe you are renting to try to determine if there is an area in the bottom where there is no foam, ribs or any type of air pockets that would interrupt the sonar signal. From there, there are a few methods for using water to surround the transducer so the sonar signal can pass through the hull. If you have a puddle in your canoe that may be enough, but I would recommend some sort of container. I have heard some use a zip lock bag or plumbers putty to hold some water. Another option is to use a piece of closed cell foam and trace your transducer onto the foam and cut out a section slightly smaller to hold your transducer in place. You can then affix the foam to the bottom of your canoe with some 100% silicone adhesive. Splash some water in the void and insert your transducer and you are good to go. You could remove the silicone later with a plastic scraper, though the plumbers putty option would be easier to remove, but it also might need more attention if it deforms.
 
02/10/2024 08:57PM  
If the bottom of the transducer is flat then you can just shoot through the Kevlar hull. Just don’t put it over the foam core.

Otherwise a suction cup works well. I personally don’t like that as I fish/troll as I travel and hate the drag/noise.

T
 
mudhen
member (23)member
  
02/11/2024 08:50AM  
I run a dakota lithium battery. As far as runtime I'm not sure. Most of my trips are around that 5 day mark and I have yet to drain it completely. Also the lithium batteries are lightweight compared to your lead core batteries.
 
GunnyJC
member (21)member
  
02/11/2024 09:56AM  
While price shopping rental canoes I happened to notice that Voyager North Outfitters lists fish finders as an optional rental item, so you might consider trying that route prior to purchasing one.
 
BuckSutherland
member (6)member
  
02/11/2024 07:46PM  
sconnie84: "I am looking into buying a portable fish finder for fishing in the BWCA. I typically rent a canoe for my trips. Is a fish finder doable in a rental canoe where I wouldn't be able to mount anything to the canoe? If so, which models do you recommend?

"


I took my first trip ever last year. I bought a Garmin striker 4 with a 3.5" screen. I mounted it onto a small piece of 1x4 and then just strapped the wood to the cross railing on the canoe with a couple bungees. It held on there great. I wrapped the transducer and battery chords with some velcro. I had an amped outdoors 15 amp hour lithium battery to power it. Had a suction cup transducer over the side of the canoe. I bought that at Scheels and it worked AWESOME. The whole set up was light, easy to handle and it worked great.

$150 fish finder
$110 battery
$30 suction cup transducer holder

Ran the battery for 20 hours and never ran out of power.


 
02/11/2024 11:06PM  
I have a striker 4 for my kayak that I brought along last year. I took my jigsaw and drill driver in my truck and in about 5 min at the entry point I built a mounting system for the depth finder and a rod holder with a 1x3, a couple screws and foam tape to avoid scratching the rental.

I laid the 1x3 across the boat and cut it to just a bit wider than the canoe. Then I cut 2 pieces about 6 inches long to go underneath. I stuck the foam where the boards touched the canoe and screwed the short pieces under the gunnels to wedge the board in place.

I have the scotty arm system that has the ducer on a flex arm and holds the screen too. I stuck a clamp on rod holder on the other side. This system worked awesome, was quick and easy to install and easy to remove.

 
lundojam
distinguished member(2735)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
  
02/12/2024 07:38AM  

I mounted a Lowrance to a clamp, and use a suction cup for the transducer. 8 AA batteries. Very simple and effective and easy to go from boat to boat. Black and white uses way less power than color.
 
WesternHills
senior member (54)senior membersenior member
  
02/14/2024 07:57AM  
Who says you can't mount things to the canoe? Most outfitters are ok with you mounting to the thwarts or hand holds, they'll even give you rod holders to mount to them. What they don't want, is people mounting to the gunwales.....unless you get a canoe specifically designed for it, like a wenonah basswood.

There are several Scotty mounts designed for mounting to small poles that work perfect on the thwarts.
 
02/14/2024 10:05AM  
timatkn: "If the bottom of the transducer is flat then you can just shoot through the Kevlar hull. Just don’t put it over the foam core.


Otherwise a suction cup works well. I personally don’t like that as I fish/troll as I travel and hate the drag/noise.


T"
agree
 
dnobwca
member (7)member
  
02/28/2024 11:17AM  
I've been struggling with transducer mounts forever on my canoes but have finally come up with a design which will work with nearly every canoe.

I've tossed away the stick mounted transducer and gone all magnetic.

All you need is a "L" shaped piece if thin steel plate which you attach to your transducer. The long part should be 6-8 inches long. I've spray coated the plate with Rust-oleum rubberized spray to protect my canoe.

For the magnet, I purchased a 300 lb strength fishing magnet off Amazon for $10. It is about 2 inches in diameter. I'm using my setup with my kevlar canoe. It is rock solid and I can move it anywhere on the hull, forward or back. Quick to remove for portages or at camp. Nothing to get in the way when fighting fish. If renting an aluminum canoe, you might need a stronger magnet.

Note for those mounting their transducers through the hull. You will lose some of your depth finders functionality and you will have to make sure you keep water in the reservoir.



 
nooneuno
distinguished member(629)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
  
02/28/2024 08:32PM  
dnobwca: "I've been struggling with transducer mounts forever on my canoes but have finally come up with a design which will work with nearly every canoe.


I've tossed away the stick mounted transducer and gone all magnetic.


All you need is a "L" shaped piece if thin steel plate which you attach to your transducer. The long part should be 6-8 inches long. I've spray coated the plate with Rust-oleum rubberized spray to protect my canoe.


For the magnet, I purchased a 300 lb strength fishing magnet off Amazon for $10. It is about 2 inches in diameter. I'm using my setup with my kevlar canoe. It is rock solid and I can move it anywhere on the hull, forward or back. Quick to remove for portages or at camp. Nothing to get in the way when fighting fish. If renting an aluminum canoe, you might need a stronger magnet.


Note for those mounting their transducers through the hull. You will lose some of your depth finders functionality and you will have to make sure you keep water in the reservoir.


I am already brinin in too much crap aint no way Im carrying a magnet that weighs 300 pounds!
 
dnobwca
member (7)member
  
02/29/2024 12:20PM  
You misunderstood. The magnetic is only 2 inches in diameter and weighs about 3 oz. It has a 300lb hold strength which allows it to hold the metal plate attached to the transducer tight to the canoe. It weighs far less than almost any other transducer arm/clamp/suction cup option you might come up with. It's also far more packable.
 
03/01/2024 08:21AM  
Striker 4
Naqua power pack
Ram Mounts

 
senkosam
member (39)member
  
03/05/2024 06:11AM  
I've always used a trolling motor next to where I sit in a canoe and had the transducer strapped to the bottom in front of the fin. Zip ties are used for the wire going up the tm shaft.
When I want to attach the transducer to various flat bottom boats and with different trolling motors, I would attach the transducer to a piece of wood and attach it to the transom using a clamp.
 
03/07/2024 11:25PM  
.




I am already brinin in too much crap aint no way Im carrying a magnet that weighs 300 pounds!"

So good
 
ccslick
member (8)member
  
04/17/2024 10:55AM  
mudhen: "I run a dakota lithium battery. As far as runtime I'm not sure. Most of my trips are around that 5 day mark and I have yet to drain it completely. Also the lithium batteries are lightweight compared to your lead core batteries. "


Do you bring a charging setup for you Dakota Lithium just in case? I run a similar setup with a Garmin Echomap, and was researching light weight charging options.
 
mudhen
member (23)member
  
04/17/2024 07:48PM  
ccslick: "
mudhen: "I run a dakota lithium battery. As far as runtime I'm not sure. Most of my trips are around that 5 day mark and I have yet to drain it completely. Also the lithium batteries are lightweight compared to your lead core batteries. "



Do you bring a charging setup for you Dakota Lithium just in case? I run a similar setup with a Garmin Echomap, and was researching light weight charging options."


No I don't bring a charger set up. The thing with lithium batteries is they take a special charger compared to regular lead core so I'm not sure what's available for that but you can be sure it will be spendy.
 
mudhen
member (23)member
  
04/17/2024 07:53PM  
dnobwca: "I've been struggling with transducer mounts forever on my canoes but have finally come up with a design which will work with nearly every canoe.


I've tossed away the stick mounted transducer and gone all magnetic.


All you need is a "L" shaped piece if thin steel plate which you attach to your transducer. The long part should be 6-8 inches long. I've spray coated the plate with Rust-oleum rubberized spray to protect my canoe.


For the magnet, I purchased a 300 lb strength fishing magnet off Amazon for $10. It is about 2 inches in diameter. I'm using my setup with my kevlar canoe. It is rock solid and I can move it anywhere on the hull, forward or back. Quick to remove for portages or at camp. Nothing to get in the way when fighting fish. If renting an aluminum canoe, you might need a stronger magnet.


Note for those mounting their transducers through the hull. You will lose some of your depth finders functionality and you will have to make sure you keep water in the reservoir.





"

Clever idea. I like this.
 
04/18/2024 01:29PM  
That magnet setup borders on brilliant. Nice work!

 
Crappiekillah
member (12)member
  
04/19/2024 06:12PM  
dnobwca: "I've been struggling with transducer mounts forever on my canoes but have finally come up with a design which will work with nearly every canoe.


I've tossed away the stick mounted transducer and gone all magnetic.


All you need is a "L" shaped piece if thin steel plate which you attach to your transducer. The long part should be 6-8 inches long. I've spray coated the plate with Rust-oleum rubberized spray to protect my canoe.


For the magnet, I purchased a 300 lb strength fishing magnet off Amazon for $10. It is about 2 inches in diameter. I'm using my setup with my kevlar canoe. It is rock solid and I can move it anywhere on the hull, forward or back. Quick to remove for portages or at camp. Nothing to get in the way when fighting fish. If renting an aluminum canoe, you might need a stronger magnet.


Note for those mounting their transducers through the hull. You will lose some of your depth finders functionality and you will have to make sure you keep water in the reservoir.





"

Wow,that might be one of the biggest “how didn’t I think of that moments” for me.Great idea pal,hope your patent is up because I’m stealing that idea for sure!2 big thumbs up!
 
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