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 Post subject: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 8:23 am 
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I have been looking at rigging my kayak with a GPS/Fishfinder Combo unit and I have found a couple that look decent. I was looking at the Lowrance Mark-4 and the Lowrance Elite-4 DSI. However, my experience with fishfinders is pretty much limited to a couple from the 90's, which had very large pixels and were very basic in function, and I am not very familiar with the new technology. I was wondering if anyone has experience with either of these devices and if you think that the DSI option is worth the extra $150.
Thank You!


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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 9:12 am 
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You'll find that very few kayakers around here use fish finders. When you spend your time fishing in 4 foot or less they aren't of much use. A hand held GPS is a nice tool but again is not a requirement. You can't go very far very fast in a kayak so getting lost isn't much of an issue unless you spend a lot of time down in everglades type environments. They are nice for tracks and marking specific holes.

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 2:29 pm 
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I just got the Elite 4-DSi, I intend using it mostly for lakes, rivers canals etc, but there are also a few spots I know in the bay that I will be interested to "see" whats down there.

If I were only fishing the flats, I wouldn't buy it, but for lakes and rivers it will be worth the money, that I am sure of.


As for the DSi, being worth the money, seeing what is down there as opposed to interpreting what your sounder is seeing, is well worth the money for me.

I'm looking forward to using it, I have a couple of Lakes with Crappie in them close by.

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 5:32 pm 
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Can you elaborate on what attracted you to this unit?

What other units did you consider?

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:19 pm 
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Most features for the price point, DSI (that shit is cool) it takes a lot of the guesswork out of using the sonar.

Wide angle Transducer 120 degrees, covers a wider area in shallower water
Built in temperature sensor which will show the thermocline.

Expandable Mapping.

5 Year Warranty

I did my research this was the best bang for the buck, that suited my needs and desires.

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:03 pm 
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John wrote:
Built in temperature sensor which will show the thermocline.


Most temperature sensors I've seen on depth finders are part of the transducer - and therefore measure temp at the surface. Many units can "see" the thermocline by adjusting the sensitivity up. You can sometimes see the change in water density. The micro-organisms that gather at the thermocline can also reflect the sound waves differently, and show up on the display.

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:14 pm 
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Man you guys are something else...I need you out in my stinkpot to edu-ma-cate me on this stuff.

My routine had consisted of find bait, throw net, what is water temp. Turn it off. Course I think I'm hijacking the thread and going down a stinkpot thread.

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:48 pm 
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BFR, You are right it is the organisms that show the thermocline, the temp sensor will mostly only show surface temps.

The other feature I liked was the track back feature, being able to scroll back to a feature and marking the spot on the GPS.

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 6:31 am 
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Thank you very much for your input everyone! I was attracted to these two models/devices because they are rather compact and still seem to maintain the function of larger and more expensive devices. Also, they both have the dual functions of plotting and depth/fish finding and are relatively inexpensive (I am just hoping that does not also mean cheap and non-durable). I think I am probably going to go with the DSI version as I plan on fishing some of the Inshore Mitigation reefs...and possibly some of the other reefs within 5-6 miles of shore if I feel up for the paddle...and I may end up using it temporarily on a power boat as soon as I get around to buying one...

Correct me if I am wrong, but it seems that the DSI should be much more helpful in finding rock pilings and other reef material as opposed to the regular sonar?

I did find the DSI version for $314 on sportsmansguide.com as opposed to the $349 I have seen advertised in most locations. However, to get that price, I do believe you need to be a member of their "preferred buyer" club or whatever they call it there.

Thanks again for all the input and advice.


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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 6:47 am 
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Greg, I've not used mine yet, but I did rig it up yesterday, you can see how I did it on the American Eagle thread in this forum.
First impression is the screen is very sharp and well lit, construction appears well built. The user interface is very tidy and easy to navigate through.



The DSI Transducer is not recommended for thru the hill installation, so you are going to have to configure something, I used a Scotty mount and some PVC pipe.

Image

If the DSI is as good as the simulator, you will definitely be able to identify pilings.

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:17 pm 
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I installed a 385CI last week, but I have not got to use it yet, but it does fish finder, temp and GPS.

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 Post subject: Re: Kayak Friendly GPS/Fishfinder Combo
PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 6:51 am 
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My unit incorporates fishfinder , gps and rod holders.
It's all made from stainless steel tubing .
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No holes where drilled in kayak to fit this unit,I also taped some foam to the front transducer bar to hide the cables and also to give it some buoyancy in case it ever went over board even though it has a safety strap you can never be to safe. :wink:


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