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Updates to early FL-18's

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Has anyone who has had the updates performed on their early FL-18 had a chance to use it yet? I was just wondering if the problems you were experiencing are gone now? How long did it take to get it back after sending it to Vexilar? I have one, and neglected to send mine in over the summer (stupid? lazy?), and am trying to decide whether to send it in or not. Any problems I've had have been very minimal, so I'd rather deal with it than risk being without this great unit on first ice!

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I'm in the same boat, printed out the serial numbers of the 18's needing updates, finally got around to checking the other night and mine is in the range frown.gif But, I'm not going to be without it, I'll live with the problem til next summer. If you go out to the Vex site, they talk about the problem, its just a matter of restarting your vex, going from AZ to Norm back to AZ. I can live with that....

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Hey Black Jack,
I've been trying to find the S/N ranges for the affected FL-18's and can't find them on Vexilar's site. I bought my FL-18 a month ago and haven't used it yet, but since I work in Bloomington I can bring it into Vexilar if need be. I would just like to know if my unit has the "fix" yet or not.
Any help is appreciated !
Twitter

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Twitter,

I know that serial numbers 187400 and under are affected, and some above this are too (but I'm not sure how high the serial numbers go). I think this cutoff number is significant because the updates required are slightly different. Send Mitchell Bennis an e-mail at Mitch@vexilar.com and I'm sure you'll get all the info you need.

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Well I'm not sure if I screwed up or not!!! My vex was in the serial # range so I sent it in even though I had never had any trouble with it. Their turnaround was great, 2 days later I got it back. The bad part is the first time out this year it was all messed up, I tried everything I could and the only way to fix it was to drop the transducer an extra foot&half to two feet down the hole and pull it up till it read close then set the stop. I just hope I don't have to do this all the time or there's going to be an fl18 for sale!!!!!! I fished this same lake last year without any problems. I need to get out on a different lake and see if the same thing happens. Anybody have any IDEAS ?????

Thanks and good luck to all !!!!!

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Now you're scaring me, SLR!!! Mine's all packaged up and ready to go out tomorrow. Maybe I'll wait for more replies before sending it! You're the first to admit (?) they've had the updates so far. . .

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What exactly is the issue with the 18's. I just bought mine a couple months ago. I'm starting to wonder if I have a problem with it. I was out fishing for gills and we were chasing a huge school of fish around the lake. Once in a while I would put the ducer in water and half the reading was solid red. It was like it was reading bottom at 5 feet and we were in 40 foot. I could take it out and drop it back and it would be fine. Anybody else? I might have another one for sale too. I could go back to my 8. Good thing I kept it. Or I could go out and buy the Marcum.

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I don't know if this will help you guys or not. Earlier this spring there was a couple of people that had trouble with there vexilars after the updates. Try here to see if this will help you.
http://fishingminnesota.com/ubb/Forum9/HTML/001018-6.html
I have been dragging my feet also in sending mine in. A friend sent his in and I'll be fishing with him this weekend so I'll see how his does.

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Bigguns1,
If my memory serves me correctly, the problems I had were when using the AZ mode. Once in a while, it would appear that the bottom (at 0 on the AZ mode) would begin to drift up. Usually I could turn the thing off and/or switch between Normal and AZ to correct this. It was a really minor malfunction to an otherwise awesome (sorry about the 80's adjective) unit. Last year there was a HUGE thread dedicated to this topic. Vexilar tech support chimed in several times to keep us all informed of their progress in replicating this in the field. I'm sure you can get more info from them and maybe there's a way to get into old threads on the forum? Anyways, I'm still very happy with my decision to get the FL-18. Hope you can get yours straightened out!

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To find older topics go to first page, in this case equipment-expert info. Right above where the topics are listed is a box that says "show topics from the last ???" drop the box down and hilite show all topics and the page will then show topics from way back when.

Fisky

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Thanks 2dog! I'm bookmarking this thread for future reference. The "problem" I was seeing sounds similar to what Vextech was describing, as the lake I experienced it on does have a very soft bottom in certain areas. I think I will trust Vexilar's engineers and go ahead with the software updates.

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Any unit with a s/n of 192,500 or under is in the update catagory. I sent mine in and had it back in five days and I'm from Michigan, so the turn around time is pretty fast. But one thing to think about is Christmas is getting close so that might start affecting the shipping time. Just something to think about.

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Wax Worm is correct. Here's the reply I got from Vex yesterday :
"If your FL-18's serial number is less than 192501, and there is no "V2"
or "Version 2" marking on the back of it, we have newer software code
available. You are welcome to bring the unit into our service department
at any time between 8 am and 4 pm, m - f, to get the free update."

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OK i bought my new Fl-18 at Reeds on labor day. It has the serial # 191632 but it has the version 2 sticker on it.

I tried my vex out on the ice on sunday and i was out checking holes for fish and when i went from deep water to shallow water the AZ mode would jump up to the dif. in depth that the holes were. confused.gif If i would turn the unit off and it would work just fine and go back to normal. This gets to be a pain w/gloves on when you have to turn it on and off.

I was wondering if I could just send it back in and see if the new update helped or not?

With the unit this way I am not pleased with it and mine might be up for-sale and I will just get a marcum instead.

------------------
FISHSTUNNER

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i thought i had the same problem, But you have no problem. You can't leave the zoom on and jump holes. The bottom lock gets confused.

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Darn that sux but o well I guess my is perfect then.

But still one more Q when i was fishing in 90' of water and had the bottom lock mode on (for open water) when i marked a fish it would go red below the fish to the bottom and jump constantly. Is it b/c the reading is so strong or what?

------------------
FISHSTUNNER

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Stopped by Vexilar in Bloomington during lunch today to get my FL-18 updsate and was in and out in less than 5 minutes. smile.gif
You gotta love customer service like that !
Anyone in the metro area that needs the update can save the shipping charges and get it done on the spot before hitting the ice. I can't wait to try mine for the first time this weekend !
Ice...please... grin.gif

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I just had my girlfriend(she works in the metro) swing in and get mine updated over her lunch today. She was armed with only my F-18 and the phrase "this needs the update". She called me after she was done and said it took less then 5 min. and she said she laughed the whole time she was there talking to the ladies at the counter. Now that is what I call great customer service.

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You guys suck! I've decided not to send mine (I live in SW Michigan) in yet, as it's been below zero every night this week and the ice is forming FAST!!! I have every reason to believe that we'll be hitting it this weekend and I would have really screwed myself if I would have mailed it out Monday like I had originally planned before starting this thread! Guess the updates can wait. My wife is in sales and frequents the Minneapolis area, so maybe I can have her swing in if it's that fast of a fix? I'm anxious to hear how your units perform after the updates.

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I just bought my vex #191454. That was just months ago. Theres no V2 sticker on it. Be careful what you buy. I got it at mills in Saint cloud. That really chaps my behind. Its not like a can just run it down to the cities.

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Don't fret, Bigguns1. I doubt you'll have any major problems with it. Like others have said, just don't leave it on AZ mode when you jump from hole to hole. Mine has yet to be updated, and I'm very glad I didn't send it in earlier this week and end up fishing "blind" this weekend. If you haven't used it yet, you'll be amazed at how that AZ mode can pick out fish sticking right to the bottom. Have fun!

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I have used it quite a bit this season already, and I havn't really noticed anything wrong with it. (yet)

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Just purchased a FL18 today. Knew about the update and mine is in the serial # range. I bought it at the local sport shop to keep the money local. I checked all his stock first and they all were below 192500 but I wanted one and he has pretty awesome service. I figure I can pack it up some Monday and have it back by the weekend.
Brian

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