ok guys, I just bought a new toon and I want to put some sonar on it, now I already own a flasher unit for ice fishing, can that be used on a toon or should I invest in another type of fish finder? Any suggestions??
I guess the Wallys World here in Cali is more desperate to get rid of thiers. They have the Cuda 168 for the price that you stated and the Cuda 128EX for $69. Somehow I missread the model number when you posted it. Sorry about that. Did you check the link for Ebay that we have on this site? Sometimes there are some good bargains there too. Here is a link the Ebay link. It is called FishingTackle Auctions. http://www.bigfishtackle.com/...gforum.cgi?forum=102;
I couldn't find fish finders on tackledirect.com. As far as Wally's World is concerned they have the Cuda 168 at $99.42. If anyone has seen it for less than $90.00 let me know I got 30 days to return the one I got :)
They are having some deals on them at Wallys World. Also have you tried the TackleDirect.com?? They are one of our sponsors for this site. They have some good deals on things as well.
Icehole, If your still interested in the Cuda 168 check out Galyans. I just purchase a unit today for $89.99. I wouldn't have known about the sale if it wasn't for the insert in "Field and Stream". This is the best rice I have come across in many months of seaching. The second best was $99.99 from and online store which just means more waiting and shipping fees. Heres a link if you need to find a store near you: http://www.galyans.com/stores/ Good luck with the new toy!
I buy two different sizes of bungee cord, by the foot, from a military surplus store. But, I also buy the premeasured ones in smaller diameters...in different lengths...at building supply outlets and especially at swapmeets. Try to find some dollar stores or other cheapo outlets. That stuff does not cost much, but there are a ton of different applications on a float tube. Depending on the mounting hardware and configuration on your transducer, you can use either PVC or a piece of wood. Doesn't have to be fancy, as long as you can keep it pointed straight down, and so you can install and uninstall it quickly when you launch or beach your craft.
Thanks as always for the advice and info. The battery I have looks like the one in the pictures just a different shape. I think it will fit in my float tube pockets. I also looked closer to the transducer pictures, than I did 5 months ago, and think I can hook it up in pretty much the same way. I just need to go find some of that bungee rope. I'll let you know if I have problems and I'll come back crying.
Hey FL, you have been given some good input by T2, my well experienced progeny in California. I will toss in a couple of other things for consideration. First of all, choosing a sonar is a matter of personal preference, just like rods, reels, lines and other tackle. You get a bunch of guys together and you can always count on some "heated discussion". The bottom line about Bottomline is that they have recently been coming out with some good stuff. They are far advanced from the old Fishin' Buddy that runs on C batteries. Most serious anglers who have tried the newer models speak favorably of them. I have no first hand experience with them, so I am unqualified to render an opinion. All I know is that those who own them will stand up and bark back atcha if you say anything bad about them. The SLA batteries are the way to go. I don't know how much juice your sonar will use, but if it takes an amp oer hour, you will get six hours from a 6 ah battery. The low wattage Cudas only suck about a half amp per hour so they are still mostly charged after a half day on the water. These batteries are a lot more "tuber friendly" than the acid filled motorcycle batteries. I used those for several years before graduating to SLA. Filling with acid and having to be careful to keep them upright in your tube was a pain. The SLA can be simply shoved into a back corner in your pocket, in any position. You do not have to worry about getting a SLA battery wet...unless you create a short between the two posts. That will creat some sparks and excitement. Very unlikely. If you are in a situation where your battery gets wet, while in a topside pocket, you will have more to worry about than a wet battery. I'm attaching three pics to show how I hook up and store the batteries for my sonar. If you can find a pic of the transducer on your unit, either post it or PM it to me and I can offer suggestions on the best way to set it up on your craft. Oh yeah, what kind of craft are you installing it on?
I am really satisfied with mine. Even if I got it discounted, I am still getting more than my moneys worth for what I paid for it. I couldn't see spending $1000 or more for one of those full color screens with heat and thermal capabilities for scanning the bottom of a lake for catfish whisker twitches. You don't need to go that high tech if you have some of TubeDudes "Bait Bugs". Those will create chaos with the kittys and make you happy in return. As far as getting your transducer mounted, show us some pics and we can come up with some good designs for you. We do have some PVC wizzards that hang out here and can offer some good advice. As far as batteries go, TubeDude always recommends the SLA (sealed lead acid) batteries. They are available from many of your online sources that you may currently deal with now. The FLIS (Float Tubers Industry Standard) suggest a 12vdc battery with a 6 to 7ah (amp hour) rating for normal tubing with fish finders. The batteries will generally stay dry in your tube but you will need to make some room for it in the pockets. If you want to see some cool pics, just browse some of the back posts from this forum. TubeDude has some very good pics here. He is our float tubing Guru as well as my Dad. Go ahead an give him a holler. I'm sure there may be some things I may have forgotten to mention to you that he will be glad to cover.
That sounds like a killer deal. I just picked up a Bottom Line tournament 4300 for $99 and am hoping it works good. I had to take back my Cuda 168 because the temperature sensor was broken. I ended up getting the 4300 for $10 less and I hope it works good. Now I just have to figure out how to hook everything up including the whopper sized transducer. I can't believe how big this thing is compared to the Cuda 168 transducer. It is literally about 5 times the size of the 168. Oh, well, it has side finders which I hope are helpful and is supposed to be a lot more powerful. We'll see if that even matters considering I don't often fish much deeper than 40 or 50 feet. So how does everyone hook up their batteries and what kinds of batteries does everyone use? Do I need to be worried about my battery getting wet when I am using it in my tube? I don't know exactly what kind of battery I have so that is probably a loaded question without much information. I am just curious to see (pictures) of what everyone else is using and if they just stuff them in a pocket when in use. Also, I posted this on the Utah Board, but am wondering on people's opinions on Bottom Line finders. Quality, reliability, etc.
Hey there icehole69, I've been doing some illustrations of my float tube gear and thought you might be interested in my fish finder/rod holder unit with adapters. Hope you find something there for your craft. JapanRon
How sweet it is. I got it at a local fishing and sports store on special minus my regular good boy discount. It came out to around 35 bucks when I bought it around 6months ago. I really works good and doesn't eat your battery up too fast either. I can fish with it on for around 9 hrs and the built in voltage meter changes only from 12.7v to 12.5 in that time period.
Hey I looked at that one thru Cabelas, thats a sweet little unit, and the cost is in the right ball park, $69.. that aint bad.
I have the Bottomline Tournament 1100 model. It seems to do well for seeing structure and defining the drops and slopes. It has a 15 degree reading on it and does fine for what I need it for. It also helps you to identify the thermoclines where the fish are hanging out at. The built in water temp is a must and very handy.
Thanks for the info, but I heard they arent that good for deep water or definition? am I wrong on this?
I'll tell you the set-up I like. I use the fishing buddy from Bottomline. It has a screw on mount, has a bottom and side view and can scan side ways 360 degrees. It runs on(I think 4 C size batters) I can easily move it from my boat, to my pontoon to the ice hole. The transducer mounts on the end of the unit. Check it out!
Thanks, now all I have to do is take into consideration cost, ability, and quality, then the fun begins on how to attatch it and where the best location will be as well as the power location or extra battery etc, guess i need to do some serious shopping now...
Whatever system you decide upon, based on what you want it to do for you, there will be a way to get it hooked up. Most sonars come with a mounting base that you attach to your craft more or less permanently. Then, you simply loosen or tighten the mounting hardware to set it up or remove it after an outing. Once you decide where you want it located, then you get creative with a piece of wood or some PVC. Lotsa tricks to it. That's the easy part. First you gotta make a decision about what kind you want.
Hey guiys thanks for the info, I will start looking into the Cuda and other brands, guess I need a decent one to show grey line. now how the heck to mount it.. well guess thats half the fun isnt it..
As previously posted I have the Cuda 168EX. Got it on-line from Wally's World for around $120+. Have it mounted on my Fat Cat incorporating the transducer rod with my pole holder.
I too think it would be a good idea to get a sonar unit. I think you can get one for around $100 that will suit your needs just fine. Like TubeDude mentioned, look back through the archives and you will see some nice setups for both toons and tubes. Once you get one mounted, you'll be glad you put it on.
I fish out of a toon and use the Cuda 128. I'll try to get some pics of how I mount it this weekend. I use the frame of my toon alot for rod mounts and transducer mounts.
Who are you calling a "lightweight"? I'll have you know that I am 6'3" and weigh two hundred and plenty pounds.
now that a lightweight idea,,,
That's the way I have done it for several years. However, my latest method is to mount the PVC transducer shaft separately, using plain old stretch cord. Snap it on before you go out, and off when you come in. And, it's universal...fits all sizes. You can also use it, to a limited extent, as a searcher for the terrain around you, by moving the transducer. Kind of a point and shoot thing. Not as good as straight down, and you have to learn how to read it that way...and not move it too much.
thanks for the info, I also like the way you incorperated the transducer holder into the rack.
That looks like the extra wide model. It is a few dollars more, but has a wider screen. Otherwise the bells and whistles are about the same. The skimmer transducer is easy to mount on a 1/2 inch PVC pipe, and can be quickly installed or taken down when launching or beaching.
is this the Model you were talking about? it looks good to me, I dont know how many Macks I will be trying to get on the toon but I will be fishing for eyes and bass with it, as well as drifting for trout..
If you wanna stay within a reasonable budget, and get a good unit with grayscale, temp readings and a cone angle of 20 to 60 degrees, take a look at the Eagle Cuda 168. Barely over a hundred dollars, and you can run it all day off a 6 amp gel cell battery. I have been using one for about a year on my float tube and it gives me all I need. If I was fishing deep water for bottom hugging macks, I would want more power and pixels, but for shallow water and most fishing applications it does fine. There should be several posts back through the archives if you wanna subject yourself to some grief.
Well I am really familier with my vexilar, but I think I need more bottom contrast, but I dont want to spend alot on it either, so I will start looking for different models in different price ranges..
Hey, flashers work fine for 'toonin'. If you already know how to read them and are comfortable using one, then there is no need to change. The one thought I might offer is that a good sonar that has a grey scale definition of bottom contours and composition can be handy...especially if you look for breaklines and changes in bottom hardness. It will also do a better job of showing trees and other structure, which is hard to read on a flasher. Some sonars also have a wider cone angle than the flashers too. That can be especially helpful in shallower water. Otherwise, you are only seeing a very small window of what is below you. The big advantage of a good flasher, like the Vexilar, is that it will help you see your jig (with proper placement of the transducer) when you are vertical jigging over identified fish targets. There are positives and negative of all units. But, if you like the flasher and don't want or need to buy something else, then just figure out a way to mount it on your new craft and go for it.
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