Author Topic: Fish Finder Recommendations  (Read 1023 times)

Offline Tacoma Marty

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Fish Finder Recommendations
« on: Sep 21, 2021, 09:16 PM »
I haven't used a fish finder before but want to add one to my arsenal this ice fishing season.  Definitely looking for a flasher but don't want to break the bank on my first one.  Any recommendations or feedback would be greatly appreciated!

Offline happyheber

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #1 on: Sep 21, 2021, 09:33 PM »
I do vexilar ;D
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Offline skifisher

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #2 on: Sep 21, 2021, 11:16 PM »
Marcum M-1, Under $300 for the basic unit.
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Offline hardwater diehard

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #3 on: Sep 22, 2021, 04:13 AM »
I haven't used a fish finder before but want to add one to my arsenal this ice fishing season.  Definitely looking for a flasher but don't want to break the bank on my first one.  Any recommendations or feedback would be greatly appreciated!

Vexilar FL18 ..it will be your first and last flasher..all you will ever need.
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Offline filetandrelease

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #4 on: Sep 22, 2021, 04:22 AM »

  If I was going back to a flasher it would be a vex fl18 or marcum m5
 

Offline Reinert

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #5 on: Sep 22, 2021, 05:36 AM »
Vex 18 or 20 . You want the zoom features

Offline cwavs1982

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #6 on: Sep 22, 2021, 10:11 AM »
If this is your first unit, you want to have one that has a zoom feature.  This gives you a chance to look at a certain depth range.  Some units have a fixed bottom zoom, and some have adjustable zoom's - meaning you can zoom in on wherever they are in the water column. 

Lot's of good units out there - not going to get into models.  Youtube is a good place to see that capabilities of each of them, then head to a sporting goods store and look at the different models and find one in your price point. 
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Offline primepin65

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #7 on: Sep 22, 2021, 11:10 AM »
A suggestion is that you could get a used unit for a fraction of the cost of a new one, once you decide what brand/model you want. Facebook marketplace is a surprisingly great resource to find used ice fishing equipment
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Offline ship of fools

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #8 on: Sep 22, 2021, 11:35 AM »
A suggestion is that you could get a used unit for a fraction of the cost of a new one, once you decide what brand/model you want. Facebook marketplace is a surprisingly great resource to find used ice fishing equipment

I've bought 4 or 5 used units over the years. I would find one and sell the one I was replacing. I'm now using a Vexilar FL-20 that was almost brand new that I bought on a 90 degree day in July for $200!  As a matter of fact that will be for sale soon since I bought a Garmin Side View unit and am going to get the ice transducer for that and sell the Vex.
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Offline hardwater diehard

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #9 on: Sep 23, 2021, 04:35 PM »
Although this article with videos is geared toward Marcum the flasher basics are covered for getting you started using any flasher .

https://marcumtech.com/blog/the-beginners-guide-to-using-an-ice-fishing-flasher/?fbclid=IwAR1XKa4U81Gn8smMpjGHRH2VHxl9MQN3Y7tX10LewbOmePsi30qC3YBrrlU
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Offline nindo24

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #10 on: Sep 23, 2021, 05:52 PM »
Vexilar FL18 ..it will be your first and last flasher..all you will ever need.


I agree with hardwater diehard. Check out the vexilar website and click on the refurbished link. I got my FL-18(damn near new) for a fraction of the price.
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Offline meandcuznalfy

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #11 on: Sep 23, 2021, 07:18 PM »
Marcum M3 is a pretty nice unit, can zoom in on any part of the water column, they're pretty reasonably priced

Offline cerhardt161

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #12 on: Sep 23, 2021, 08:46 PM »
I just got a helix 7 msi g3 for 450$ and a 70$ Ice transducer and your good for ice fishing. You dont need the side imaging or even down imaging unless you want them for open water. I did see a few basic models for like 200-300$. With the helix you have a flasher, maps, and traditional sonar all on one screen if you want. The 5 inch is also good but the screens a little small in split screen. With a flasher all you have is basic settings and maybe a simple bottom zoom on the higher end models. With the helix units you can do everything a flasher can X4 and you can use it in summer or buy the mapping chip and map lakes that have never been mapped. Im waiting till winter to sell my fl-18 and ill probably get 350-400$ And pay for the helix.

Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #13 on: Sep 23, 2021, 10:48 PM »
I haven't used a fish finder before but want to add one to my arsenal this ice fishing season.  Definitely looking for a flasher but don't want to break the bank on my first one.  Any recommendations or feedback would be greatly appreciated!

While I own 4 vexilar and have been very happy with them. (FL18, FL20, FL22HD, and FLX28HD) I WOULD NOT recommend a vexilar to anyone today. Mainly because vexilar discontinued multi beam transducers for the units. In order to get a unit with multiple beams…..you have to by the latest and greatest unit at over $800.

Vexilar today has become a very over priced company for the product you get. They sell units due to the brand recognition they have from 20+ years ago. The “new’” products from them are not innovative, all they did was removed options on the lower units then bring a new one out priced crazy high with the options they removed from the other units

What u want in a flasher is simple.

1. At least a dual transducer (wide and narrow cone) depth, structure, and weeds will dictate which to use.

2. A unit with bottom zoom. (Bottom zoom is huge in telling the difference with bottom hugging fish like walleye)

Currently the Humming bird ice 35 offers those thing at the cheapest price point at $250 new. Best bang for the buck. Has zoom and a dual beam transducer.

Offline FishDoktor

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #14 on: Sep 28, 2021, 10:32 AM »
While I own 4 vexilar and have been very happy with them. (FL18, FL20, FL22HD, and FLX28HD) I WOULD NOT recommend a vexilar to anyone today. Mainly because vexilar discontinued multi beam transducers for the units. In order to get a unit with multiple beams…..you have to by the latest and greatest unit at over $800.

Vexilar today has become a very over priced company for the product you get. They sell units due to the brand recognition they have from 20+ years ago. The “new’” products from them are not innovative, all they did was removed options on the lower units then bring a new one out priced crazy high with the options they removed from the other units

What u want in a flasher is simple.

1. At least a dual transducer (wide and narrow cone) depth, structure, and weeds will dictate which to use.

2. A unit with bottom zoom. (Bottom zoom is huge in telling the difference with bottom hugging fish like walleye)

Currently the Humming bird ice 35 offers those thing at the cheapest price point at $250 new. Best bang for the buck. Has zoom and a dual beam transducer.

I use an ICE 35 and have been very very happy with it especially considering its price. Holds a good charge too. I've had a few fishing friends get an ICE 35 or 45 based on watching me use my 35.

Offline Junkie4Ice

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #15 on: Sep 28, 2021, 11:06 AM »
I'll throw in another vote for the 35. Bought it while my Marcum was being serviced last season and I was very impressed with it. I paid $169 at fleet farm after an in store special.
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Offline njsquatch

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #16 on: Sep 28, 2021, 11:25 AM »
I just got a helix 7 msi g3 for 450$ and a 70$ Ice transducer and your good for ice fishing. You dont need the side imaging or even down imaging unless you want them for open water. I did see a few basic models for like 200-300$. With the helix you have a flasher, maps, and traditional sonar all on one screen if you want. The 5 inch is also good but the screens a little small in split screen. With a flasher all you have is basic settings and maybe a simple bottom zoom on the higher end models. With the helix units you can do everything a flasher can X4 and you can use it in summer or buy the mapping chip and map lakes that have never been mapped. Im waiting till winter to sell my fl-18 and ill probably get 350-400$ And pay for the helix.

I bought a helix 5 GPS G2 for last ice season.  one of my favorite features is the auto chart live that lets you create a custom contour map. Really lets you find the spot on the spot. especially fishing off shore structure

Offline hardwater diehard

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #17 on: Sep 28, 2021, 11:33 AM »
I bought a helix 5 GPS G2 for last ice season.  one of my favorite features is the auto chart live that lets you create a custom contour map. Really lets you find the spot on the spot. especially fishing off shore structure

Question if I may ..are you able to chart with the iceducer while on the ice hole hopping ?
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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #18 on: Sep 28, 2021, 12:16 PM »
Yes you can hardwater , with the autochart live
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Offline hardwater diehard

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #19 on: Sep 28, 2021, 01:47 PM »
Yes you can hardwater , with the autochart live

Good to know ..I chatted with Garmin on a similar question on the EchoMap 43cv and the Iceducer(not sure which one) and they stated no ..not sure if it was a EchoMap 43cv and/or the transducer inability . I believe they said it was a CHIRP issue ..or lack thereof.
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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #20 on: Sep 28, 2021, 02:33 PM »
Yah YouTube it on hummingbird ,as far as garmin I have 7608echo gps on boat can do same pretty much the same record and fill in contours and save
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Offline hardwater diehard

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #21 on: Sep 28, 2021, 02:45 PM »
Yah YouTube it on hummingbird ,as far as garmin I have 7608echo gps on boat can do same pretty much the same record and fill in contours and save

Yes very familiar with that on my Garmin with an open water transducer ...I was thinking about getting an iceducer and adding it to my Garmin ...sorta dipping my toe in the digital realm..I also wanted to map some of the small bodies of water I ice fish ..I could do fairly easily as the ice is pretty much swiiss cheesed by days end ..I could map it ..should it work pretty ezpz.
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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #22 on: Sep 28, 2021, 02:48 PM »
Just looking at the Garmin site  does all the same as hummingbird as far I could tell. The ice kit couple hundo$. Do you take unit off boat? Or planning to? 
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Offline hardwater diehard

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #23 on: Sep 28, 2021, 02:56 PM »
Just looking at the Garmin site  does all the same as hummingbird as far I could tell. The ice kit couple hundo$. Do you take unit off boat? Or planning to?

No boat ..mounted via RAM mounts onto a older Genz box ..rigged the open water transducer on a make shift off the side of the boat mount ..mapped a large portion of my local lakes with it via a friend(s) boat .
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Offline MT204

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #24 on: Sep 28, 2021, 06:24 PM »
Question if I may ..are you able to chart with the iceducer while on the ice hole hopping ?
It's not really automatic like when your in a boat though.
You have to for lack of better words "mark" each hole which in turn charts the bottom.
Depending on the depth of the water and how far apart the holes are makes a nice chart.
Or better yet cruse the lake in the fall and chart, if possible.

Offline njsquatch

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Re: Fish Finder Recommendations
« Reply #25 on: Sep 29, 2021, 08:11 AM »
Question if I may ..are you able to chart with the iceducer while on the ice hole hopping ?

yeah it works great. when in ice mode when you hit the mark button it will ask if you want to save a way point of log it to auto chart. I usually fish with a bunch of people and will jump from hole to hole and create a contour map. one buddy saw it and order a helix while on the ice!

 



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