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Using Vexilar in Open Water

20 posts in this topic

I had my Vex along with me, so I thought I'd try using it in open water to jig for some panfish. I was in a perfect spot and the water was pretty calm, so I thought it would be a good time to try it out.

I dropped it in, but I got so much interference that I couldn't use it. My trolling motor has a transducer on it, so I took it out of the water to see if that would help. I also have a transducer mounted on the stern, which I cannot take off. I took the key and everything out so it would turn off, but nothing helped. No matter what I did, I couldn't tell what was my lure, what was the bottom, weeds or fish.

Would the hull of the boat cause this? Does anyone have any tips or suggestions on how to effectively use a Vex in open water?

Thanks!!

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Vex makes a special tranducer for summer use. i picked one up a few years ago for aroung 70 bucks, works great and you can get one with suction cups to stick to the back of your boat.

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I've seen people use a hockey stick to get the ducer out far enough to use with an open water rod but I never heard of any interference problems. Maybe someone nearby was using side scan? Did you try the interference reduction?

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Thanks for the info so far.

Yeah, I tried everything, but couldn't get away from it. Maybe I'll look into the open water 'ducer.

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they also make a cable, think they call it a s cable which cuts down interference and also makes it easier to find bottom in weeds. I use this on my duck boat with my ice transducer and it works very well

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Was the trolling motor on? Probably interference issue between the depthfinder and the PWM circuit of the trolling motor.

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I used to run an FL-8 on my bow with the transducer mounted on th trolling motor, no problems at all. Havent got around to mounting the Marcum up there yet.

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I run the FL18 up front and get interference when the trolling motor is running. Turn the gain down to zero and it disappears. I have the universal sonar on the Maxxum Pro with the FL18 transducer, however.

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I just got a Terova 24 volt Minnkota and mounted my Fl18 up front. When I have the electric trolling motor running I also get interference on the Vex. They Vex and the trolling motor are hooked up to different batteries. I wish I could eliminate the interference some how. Any suggestions??

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First thing you will need to distinguish is if your getting interference or clutter, or if the problem is elsewhere.

Can you get a clear bottom reading at a low gain setting?

Ease up the gain until you see the bottom in red and your bait in green/orange and that should be sufficient.

If no other sonars are running or trolling motors you should see no counter rotation on the display.....now turn on the trolling motor..is there counter rotating marks? If so, you found you culprit, repeat with the other electronics.

If your Vexilar is equipped with an IR feature simply tap the IR tell the interference is gone.

If it is a clutter reading causing the distortion on your display than a IR cable will cure this if your Vexilar unit does not already have LP mode...if it does, run it on LP mode to solve this clutter problem.

Algie rich and bug filled summer waters are clutter intense, so the LP mode or the IR Cable is often the only cure.

If you are strapping on your ducer to your trolling motor try a band of inner tube rubber under the clamp and under the ducer to isolate the ducer from the electrical field caused by the electric motor. Also use cable ties or electrical tape to isolate the ducer cable from contact with the shaft and the trolling motors power or control cable...keep them as far apart as you can. Separate sonar and trolling motor power feeds is wise too.

FYI: I run my FL-20's all summer on 2 boats and it is in LP mode most of the time. If I get any interference from my other 200 khz electronics I simply tap the IR button 2-3 times and it is resolved. I have had no issues with trolling motors from interference, even with universal sonar, and shoot through the hull mounted ducers.

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I wish I could eliminate the interference some how. Any suggestions??

I'd pick up a ferrite choke core from radioshack for the vex power line and try that.

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i use my ducer in open water all the time! i just flip the ducer over the side of my old aluminum and the only time i had interfearance was if the ducer was not deep enough in the water. now i have a fiber glass boat and its the same way just gotta put it deeper. did you try messing with the interfearance buttons? turn the sensitivity down all the way and work up from there.

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Thanks so much for all the input. Just to reiterate, I have an FL-18. I just dropped it over the side and let the foam float keep it up. I did adjust the depth of the transducer as I thought maybe the hull was interfering, but it didn't seem to help. The trolling motor was plugged in, but I had it out of the water and not running. The water was pretty calm, so I don't think there was a problem with it bobbing up and down.

I also worked with the zoom, gain and everything else. I don't know if I tried the LP or not.

You know when you're on the ice and two people in the same shelter have their transducers running? That's what the interference looked like, only much worse. There were green, yellow and red marks jumping all over the water column. I was in about 11 FOW, with weeds coming up about 5 feet off the bottom. I dropped my jig right next to the transducer and could not see it show up on screen, just too much going on.

I'll try the LP next time to see if that helps. I also went on the Vex web site and see the open water conversion kits. I'll keep experimenting and see what I come up with.

Thanks again!

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I use a vexilar all the time for trolling in shallow water. I find it work better then a graph. The graph always draws your eyes to the center of it (like watching a T,V or movie). When all I'm intrested in is the first 2mm's.

I've never had that kind of problem. I think you have a problem with your transducer cable or conection. Find a frend with one and try his cable. On some models you can press the sensitivity knob ( I think up to 10 times ) to help clear it up.

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I've got a Marcum VX-1 does anybody know if that would work well in a boat or do I need some special transducer?

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When I'm ice fishing for sunny's - there are many times when I can't see the bait. Mainly because there are so many fish down there that is all you see.

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if you ever have been sitting on the ice and you have a blank screen then all of a sudden a school of bait fish comes through and it starts with light green lines then boom solid red!! its one of coolest things i have ever seen while fishing.

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It's great until you realize they are not going to bite. Then you just get frustrated.

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No one mentioned this, and I haven't seen your display, but what about the battery? If the juice is too low my Vex freaks out. I used to run off of the vex battery, but now I run it off 27 series Trojan and never an issue.

I have a Minnkota with uni sonar (FL-18 too)and once in a while I will get interference when the T-motor is running. It stops when the T-motor isn't running though.

I'd check the voltage and if that's OK then I'd make a call to Vex and see what they say 952-884-5291. They'd prolly want you to bring it in so they can test it. Be sure to get some free stickers:)

Good luck!

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