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Thread: Helix Sonar

  1. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
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    Quote Originally Posted by robertdilbert View Post
    care to recommend a good beginner DVD from him?
    I would start with taking a day and watching his free and open tips. He has plenty on his site and you can find plenty on Youtube. I would pay close attention to the screens on the different brands. He has several free videos that compare brands. Pay close attention to those! That may help with figuring out the brand you want to go with. I am a Lowrance guy. Nothing against Humminbird.. Fantastic technology. I haven't used Garmin but I am sure they are right there in the game. I am just not as comfortable with Humminbird as I am with my Lowrance. There are Humminbird guys that aren't as comfortable with Lowrance.

    There are rigging tips as well... But I highly suggest having a professional rig if you are not 100% confident in your rigging capabilities. An inch here, a half an inch there, a cable routed wrong can all affect performance.

    I would purchase videos that deal with your preferred unit after you decide. Or if you have a unit, go with the DVD for that unit. There is enough 101 stuff out there without starting on a beginner video.

  2. #14
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    Dec 1969
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    Quote Originally Posted by stripernut1 View Post
    watch instructional dvd's, watch youtube videos, take a class....do whatever it takes to get your started with good information.
    and then (ive said this many times before) take the boat to the lake....AND LEAVE ALL YOUR FISHING RODS AT HOME...
    this will allow you to pay undivided attention and focus on the graph.
    i spend an enormous amount of time graphing the afternoon before i plan on striper fishing the next morning, during this time i am not only scouting for fish/bait, i am constantly fine tuning and watching how each little change either improves or degrades what im lookig at.
    i guess the short answer is the same as duaynes, there is no substitute for time on the water.

    p.s. lat summer i had to fish for 25 days without a graph while mine was beinng replaced, i felt so uncomfortable and naked without my underwater eyes. but with a lot of help from duayne and years of notes i was able to limit everyday except one.

    that leads me to my next obsession....good notes, they have proven to be the most effective tool on my boat
    I don't have the luxury of spending hours on the water before a trip. I usually get in the evening before and must spend time getting the boat set and prepare to catch bait. So I've had to come up with ways to be as efficient as possible in eliminating water. I do not know many on Cumberland that have adopted a combined side scan, sonar, GPS approach like I have (Maybe they have and I just haven't met them). Sometimes 40 yards in or 20 yards out can make all the difference in the world with stripers. They are creatures of structure and sometimes a bottom depth change of 10 feet can make all the difference in the world. I use side imaging to help me home in on what's going on, GPS to see the structure changes and sonar to get a real time read for line adjustments. My screen always has all three.

    And we were lucky the fish were a little scattered and staying in a the same general area\depth range when you didn't have your finder. LOL

  3. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Nicholasville, KY
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    Thanks for all of the responses, tips, and knowledge shared.

  4. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Louisville, Ky
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    Quote Originally Posted by ON3 3Y3D WILLI3 View Post
    Thanks for all of the responses, tips, and knowledge shared.
    I think I helped derail your thread a tad. You asked about mapping cards? I use the Navionics Hotmaps Platinum.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    I use their features that allow me to transfer data back and forth from my mobile phone and my unit. I can sit at home and set waypoints on structure I want to explore on my phone, then transfer those to my unit once I get to the water. I can also transfer the new waypoints from my unit to my phone, then study them at home later.

    I think the Platinum is the right amount of detail for me.

  5. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
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    Youand my dad would get into a fight if you did that.

    Quote Originally Posted by stripernut1 View Post
    watch instructional dvd's, watch youtube videos, take a class....do whatever it takes to get your started with good information.
    and then (ive said this many times before) take the boat to the lake....AND LEAVE ALL YOUR FISHING RODS AT HOME...
    this will allow you to pay undivided attention and focus on the graph.
    i spend an enormous amount of time graphing the afternoon before i plan on striper fishing the next morning, during this time i am not only scouting for fish/bait, i am constantly fine tuning and watching how each little change either improves or degrades what im lookig at.
    i guess the short answer is the same as duaynes, there is no substitute for time on the water.

    p.s. lat summer i had to fish for 25 days without a graph while mine was beinng replaced, i felt so uncomfortable and naked without my underwater eyes. but with a lot of help from duayne and years of notes i was able to limit everyday except one.

    that leads me to my next obsession....good notes, they have proven to be the most effective tool on my boat
    Years ago when I first started learning about sonar units I gave a speech in HS about how the Lowrance Little Green Box worked. When my dad bought the very first retail fish flasher I studied the manual and learned how it worked. This unit ran on two 6 volt dry cell batteries and was actually a good unit for finding structure and you had to learn how the flasher worked to use it properly. I wanted to spend the day using the fish flasher on the lake but my father wanted to fish. As he had been fishing this area of KY lake and catching huge bass for years before I was in HS. I think I was a sophmore when he got the Little Green box. He got really mad at me when I just wanted to run the boat back and forth over some drop offs to learn the lay of the land. So we didn't get to use the little green box much. After I got my own boat I bought the Humminbird 60 flasher and used it a lot. Finally I got the Humminbird LCR8000 which was a liquid crystal graph recorder type sonar unit. I still have this unit on the front of my boat in good working condition. It's was new in 1986 when I got it. A few years ago I added side scanning sonar to my boat. So I've been using sonar units for many years. Over 40 years now. There was a really good article in Fishing Facts Magazine back in the 1980's and I read that 6 page article over and over. Most sonar units used a single frequency to send and received sound waves from the transducer. Now we have multi frequency sonars that can send the signals faster and longer and give us a better picture of the bottom 6". The ping rate has changed so that we can now see things closer to the bottom. Now frequency changes help us see the fish better too. It's called CHIRP now.

    If you want to better understand what the sonar is showing you get some topographic maps and learn to read the contours on the map. Drive around the roads and look at the land along the road way. Noticed the high and low areas. Check out the steep areas and the flat areas. Make a not of any creeks you see and how they twist and turn as they meander though a woods or meadow. Then pretend that the land has water on it and you are in a boat 30 ft above the land. Imagine what the sonar would show you below? Keep this in mind when you are fishing and using sonar. Think about what the land looked like before the lake was flooded. The most important thing it to see in your minds eye what the bottom of the lake looks like and then learn what type of fish use different types of strcture at different times of the years. Throw in some objects like underwater ledges or stumps or even submergent vegetation and the end of the weed line.

    I use to scuba dive and every time I was diving I'd check out the schools of fish. My dive buddies didn't fish like me so they didn't pay that much attention to the fish. I did pay attention and wondered why the fish were where they were. I found many fish in the 3 to 4 lb range swimming together in big schools. But they were hanging around structure. There was a building that was flooded and the fish were hanging around inside the building. The water was 40 ft deep and the house or building was completely under water. It was a rock quarry in Western KY called Celurian Springs. It's used to this day as a diving center. It was closed to the public when I was diving that day. Yea we went diving anyway. There were huge bluegills nesting on a sloped area with a sandy bottom. It was an old ramp road that allowed the equipment to drive into the rock quarry. It was fairly steep at about 30 deg slope and went all the way down to the bottom of the quarry. The bluegill were in 15 ft of water nesting. They were huge. And the water was crystal clear. It was a scene that I will never forget.

    When I was in college I took a course in Physical Geology at the Universty of Southern Indiana. Back then it was called ISUE. In that class the professor introduced me to topographical maps. That was back in 1973/74. I had to learn to draw a topo map from data points that included the depth reading and the long and lat of each data point. We learned to draw lines of equal depth using the data points. And yes the more data points you have the more accurate the topo map will be.

    Learn to your your depth finder and you will catch more fish in the long run. Just don't take my dad fishing with you if all you are going to do is ride around the lake without any fishing poles. LOL He would not like that. Dad passed in 2001 and now I can do all the scouting around on the lake that I want without having to listen to him complaining about us not fishing.

  6. #18
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    russell springs
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    714
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moveon View Post
    Years ago when I first started learning about sonar units I gave a speech in HS about how the Lowrance Little Green Box worked. When my dad bought the very first retail fish flasher I studied the manual and learned how it worked. This unit ran on two 6 volt dry cell batteries and was actually a good unit for finding structure and you had to learn how the flasher worked to use it properly. I wanted to spend the day using the fish flasher on the lake but my father wanted to fish. As he had been fishing this area of KY lake and catching huge bass for years before I was in HS. I think I was a sophmore when he got the Little Green box. He got really mad at me when I just wanted to run the boat back and forth over some drop offs to learn the lay of the land. So we didn't get to use the little green box much. After I got my own boat I bought the Humminbird 60 flasher and used it a lot. Finally I got the Humminbird LCR8000 which was a liquid crystal graph recorder type sonar unit. I still have this unit on the front of my boat in good working condition. It's was new in 1986 when I got it. A few years ago I added side scanning sonar to my boat. So I've been using sonar units for many years. Over 40 years now. There was a really good article in Fishing Facts Magazine back in the 1980's and I read that 6 page article over and over. Most sonar units used a single frequency to send and received sound waves from the transducer. Now we have multi frequency sonars that can send the signals faster and longer and give us a better picture of the bottom 6". The ping rate has changed so that we can now see things closer to the bottom. Now frequency changes help us see the fish better too. It's called CHIRP now.

    If you want to better understand what the sonar is showing you get some topographic maps and learn to read the contours on the map. Drive around the roads and look at the land along the road way. Noticed the high and low areas. Check out the steep areas and the flat areas. Make a not of any creeks you see and how they twist and turn as they meander though a woods or meadow. Then pretend that the land has water on it and you are in a boat 30 ft above the land. Imagine what the sonar would show you below? Keep this in mind when you are fishing and using sonar. Think about what the land looked like before the lake was flooded. The most important thing it to see in your minds eye what the bottom of the lake looks like and then learn what type of fish use different types of strcture at different times of the years. Throw in some objects like underwater ledges or stumps or even submergent vegetation and the end of the weed line.

    I use to scuba dive and every time I was diving I'd check out the schools of fish. My dive buddies didn't fish like me so they didn't pay that much attention to the fish. I did pay attention and wondered why the fish were where they were. I found many fish in the 3 to 4 lb range swimming together in big schools. But they were hanging around structure. There was a building that was flooded and the fish were hanging around inside the building. The water was 40 ft deep and the house or building was completely under water. It was a rock quarry in Western KY called Celurian Springs. It's used to this day as a diving center. It was closed to the public when I was diving that day. Yea we went diving anyway. There were huge bluegills nesting on a sloped area with a sandy bottom. It was an old ramp road that allowed the equipment to drive into the rock quarry. It was fairly steep at about 30 deg slope and went all the way down to the bottom of the quarry. The bluegill were in 15 ft of water nesting. They were huge. And the water was crystal clear. It was a scene that I will never forget.

    When I was in college I took a course in Physical Geology at the Universty of Southern Indiana. Back then it was called ISUE. In that class the professor introduced me to topographical maps. That was back in 1973/74. I had to learn to draw a topo map from data points that included the depth reading and the long and lat of each data point. We learned to draw lines of equal depth using the data points. And yes the more data points you have the more accurate the topo map will be.

    Learn to your your depth finder and you will catch more fish in the long run. Just don't take my dad fishing with you if all you are going to do is ride around the lake without any fishing poles. LOL He would not like that. Dad passed in 2001 and now I can do all the scouting around on the lake that I want without having to listen to him complaining about us not fishing.
    nah, your ol man would've been so worn out from reeling fish in that morning he would welcome the rest period that evening lol. I bet you miss the complaining every time you turn the graph on .

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