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fishingguy

I went and did it, got me a vexilar...

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I just bought the bullet and got me a vexilar. I am getting the FL8 SLT. Should be here the next day or two.
I was wondering if any of you long time users of flashers, could give me the $1.00 tour. I have read the owners manual via the internet and have a basic understanding, but was wondering if anyone could cut to the chase. Any tips? Short cuts? Things to remember? Basiclly looking for any help anyone could provide to cut down my learning curve.
I am a newbie to the flasher world, so any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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One tip would be to set the gain as low as possible so your bait shows up as a thin green line.
Also put it on the depth setting that is closest to the real depth so there is as much distance as possible between the ice and the bottom on your screen.

Sometimes fish show up as below your bait when they are actually off to the side because of the angle of the cone.

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I always if possible put my fl-8 directly behind the hole that i'm fishing so I can see both the screen and the end of my rod tip when the fish is about to bite. That way you don't have to take your eye off of the screen to watch the fish strike your lure!
I never use a bobber when jigging for walleyes or crappies so I can still see the screen when they hit my lure. I use a bobboer only for my dead stick that I don't have my fl-8 in!
Also keep the transducer snug up against the back side of the hole your fishing to keep it out of the way. And adjust you transducer to hang about 1 inch below the bottom of your hole to avoid tangleing fishing line with your transducer!
Just my 2 cents!
Good Luck!!

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Fishguy,
A new unit should come with a basic instruction video hosted by Dave Genz. While the video/sound aren't the best quality, the instruction should be enough to get you going. From there play with it and it won't take long to adopt a style that works for you.
Spike

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Favorite Vex tip: When a fish comes into your cone gently jiggle your bait and lure the fish 3-4 feet or so off the bottom. Not only does this seem to make the fish more aggressive, it helps you learn what the fish look like on the flasher. One other tip that was mentioned about fish appearing to be "below" your bait, this means that they are on the out edges of the cone and therefore, are further away from transducer than straight below, causing the below affect. Watch for the bottom to appear to "bubble up" with colors. This usually means a fish is coming from the side.

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All good tips guys nothing to add but goodluck to you and I know you will love it like the rest of us.Get into some fish and you will self learn in about two minutes. Very simple process,try getting into some panfish, usually abunch down there. Good learning expierence and alot of fun.

PS if fishing in a trap or something similar drill a third hole for the transducer then wont have to take out for every fish,and still get good reading

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Just got done giving my girlfriend the Vex 101 class last week. I have always had the best luck when you see a fish come in, jig right above the line on the Vex. If no hit, stop and hold the bait still. If still nothing I let the bait go below the mark on the Vex and pull it up through the mark again and start jigging above again. Once you get the fish mark to shake a little on the Vex it's usually go time. Just my method. It seems to work fairly well and it is a lot of fun to watch and feel it all happen. I hate to say it but ice fishing has been about three times as fun for me since I bought my Vex last winter. Good luck, have fun, and be careful.

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Welcome to the world of the guardian fish.
While most people will not take this issue seriously... you will eventualy see somthing strange going on while fishing an active school of crappies...... It can be a bit frustrating... But there will absolutly be nothing wrong with your Vexilar. It'd be a guardian fish in action.
You have purchased the finest tool available to your fishing learning ability. And, if you have a boat.... it't the finest tool in the open water season as well.

One bit of advice. Take care not to drop or ding your transducer. Keep ice off the bottom of it when moving from hole to hole......( a method of fooling a guardian fish )
Congratualtions and Happy fishing days are ahead for you.
Oh and practice catch and release.
Crappie todd

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all good info. You may want to start with a good sized jigging spoon in a depth like 20+ feet just to help you to see everything and work the gain and get a sense of how fast things move in and out an a vex. Best advice when you see a fish come in keep doing exactly what you were doing, and if he doesn't smack it in about 10-30 seconds hold it very still, most smacks will come then. You will learn things with experience for instence even with the lowest gain setting a 3" perch will show up as a thick red line when right under the center of the cone, and you can usually tell if it was a walleye or northern by the speed they move in/out of the cone. Perch and crappies generally move in and out pretty slow and will spend more time staring at the lure.

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Next to my hands, the most valuable fishing tool I own. Keep your eyes peeled for suspended fish when fishing off the bottom. If you see some color that is staying at a consistent depth, reel your bait up to check out the action.

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Congrats on the purchase!! You will soon be catching more fish probably a lot more. Have fun with your new toy! Save some fish for the rest of us.

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Welcome to the most interesting chess match/video game on ice.

Recharge the batter fully after each use. That's the best way to maintain its longest life.

I have the ice ducer and the foam float. I rig it so the Vex sits to the side or rear of the hole and the ducer is just below the bottom edge of the ice, right up against the bottom but not tight against it.

That way, there's no extra cord hanging down to tangle your line when a fish hits. I also usually put it on the left side of the hole, because as a right-hander, I tend to jig the rod off to my right as I pull up on it, away from the side of the hole with the ducer.

Also, many guys drill another hole right next to their jigging hole, and put the ducer in the second hole. That way your lure in the other hole is close enough to stay in the cone of the Vex but the ducer cable isn't in the same hole as your line. And it's like magic, no tangles. grin.gif

I also recommend a cover. Vexilar makes one of heavy nylon and plastic that fits nicely over the round pro-packs. I use that one. Amazing how many dings are absorbed by a cover, not to mention keeping off water and dirt. The covers are washable, and cost about $30.

Good luck, and have a blast.

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About using a vexilar soft propack cover, I recently talked to a guy at vexilar and they have had many units ruined because moisture gets trapped in the cover/bag and is causing rust to build up on the vex. anyone who still uses the cover should wipe any water out and let it air dry before zipping the bag shut, or stop using the cover entirely.I personally like the bag because it looks sharp and makes it easy to carry and store in a 5 gallon bucket, so I still use it!!

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In four years, I've not had a problem with moisture buildup in the soft pac. I have the FL8-SLT, not that the exact model matters, I suppose.

Why no moisture problem?

When I use the Vex, I always unzip the plastic cover over the dial portion of the Vex, because I don't like the distortion caused by the flexible plastic. And I have the larger zipper half undone as well so the ducer cable can run out. So those two things probably mean less moisture buildup while the Vex is in use. And when I charge the Vex, the main zipper is open all the way and the softpack is gapped wide open, so the cord for the charger can snake in to the battery easier. No close system = no moisture buildup.

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like bigeyes posted my vex is worth thousands of $$$$ to me also and thought it was important to pass along this potential problem with moisture. I've been using the softpack for 2 years and never had any problems either. Last week I stopped into vex to buy a dual beam ducer and another softpack and they informed me of the problem and said he would not use the softpack anymore and I shouldn't either, I'm not saying it is true or not but it came from someone who has to deal with repairs and problems everyday. I use and charge my vex the same way stcatfish does and no problems. But I'm guessing allot of the water goes into the softpack when packing the ducer and cord back in allowing water to settle wherever it needs to go in the softpack. any other opinions out their or someone seen this problem please reply.

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I was wondering about why you let the transducer hang so deep? I run mine as short as I can and just make sure it hangs level . The guy at fish-letronics (dealer in Colombia heights MN) told me that the FL8 will shoot right through the ice without drilling a hole,so no need to hang it long unless you like it that way.I was thinking that the ice was a tube and I had to get just below it ,he was right I see no diffrence. When I get a nice fish on just a flick and everthing is out of the way. sometimes I'll use my foot and slide the whole unit away. Metro

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I too bought an FL-8 recently. Best investment I have made in awhile( wife thinks the opposite). I do wonder about the hard pak it came with. Is it okay to leave on the ice during use, or should I have it off the ice? Right now I put it on a bucket. Also will snow damage it, if a little blows on it? Thanks for any input you could provide.

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