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Good Vexilar Article

2 posts in this topic

Just thought I would share this tip I got from Vexilar. Enjoy! smile.gif

Testing Your Unit and Transducer Sensitivity

There's nothing worse than ice fishing with an FL-8 or 18 that's running weak. Due to the cold and just the general nature of the ice fishing environment, your equipment can take quite a beating. Here is how to test your system to make sure it's up to snuff:

Set your Pro Pack, or whatever ice kit you have, onto a kitchen counter top or workbench in the garage. There must be a flat solid floor below, no carpet. Place a hard cover book on the carpet if you need to. Hangthe Ice-Ducer over the edge so that the bottom is about 24" from the floor. Make sure that it is hanging by itself in mid-air and not resting against anything. This is to insure that the transducer will hang straight. If you have a Puck transducer mounted on an arm, level it off so it is pointing straight at the floor. Now, turn the flasher on to the first range. With the Gain set to zero, you should see a mark at the 12:00 position indicating the top, or your transducer, and another mark at the 9 foot line indicating the bottom, or floor.

Notice how the depth is completely inaccurate. The reason is that the speed of the burst of sound coming out of your transducer is traveling much slower in the air than it would be in the water. So the unit thinks it's deeper. Also the strength of your system is much weaker in air than
water. The top line should be mostly red in color. The bottom line may be green, orange, or red (depending on the strength of your system, how straight your transducer is, and the type of floor). If you cannot see the floor mark without having to turn your gain up, try a harder or smoother type of floor. If there is no change, the system has a
sensitivity problem. You must see at least a green mark, on a hard floor, with the gain at minimum to pass the test.

You can judge the overall sensitivity of the system by doing this "air demo" test, but you can't tell if a weakness is due to the unit or transducer (which is much more common) without replacing one or the
other with a known good component. Borrow a friend's transducer or bring
your setup into your local Vexilar dealer and ask if you can use one they have in stock for your test.

If your transducer doesn't pass the test, it will have to be replaced. Weak transducers cannot be repaired. I'm sure the dealer will be happy to help you out. If the flasher itself proves to be the culprit, it may
be your opportunity to justify that shiny new FL-18 you've been waiting for. If that's not in your budget, our service department should be able to save the day.

[This message has been edited by Skeets (edited 10-31-2002).]

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Got this advice on vexilar when I asked them about refurbishing my machine...

Here are some instructions on how to clean it. When you're in there,
you'll be able to tell if the brushes are worn out.

Remove the two screws from the back cover, unplug the power and
transducer jacks from the PC board, and remove the back cover. Next,
remove the control knobs from the front of the case (the allen size is
1.5mm). Remove the four screws that hold the PC board in place and
remove the board.

Using compressed air, blow out all of the brush dust from in and around
the wheel assembly and wash the front case, inside and out, with soap
and water.

To clean the brush contacts, make a tool by stapling a small piece of
fine sandpaper to the end of a popsicle stick. Connect the rear case
power jack to the PC board and turn the unit on. Be careful of the
spinning wheel! Insert the tool you made between the board and the
spinning wheel. Clean the three brass rings until they are shinny.
Clean the three brass rings until they are shinny. Run the unit for at
least 30 minutes at room temperature to reseat the brushes.

If the brush heads are worn close to flat and there are grooves worn in
the slip rings, the brush kit will be required. You can do this yourself
or send it into us for the service. I've attached a copy of the brush
kit instructions to help you decide.

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