Author Topic: Entry level flasher?  (Read 1684 times)

Offline Seamonkey84

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #30 on: Aug 08, 2018, 03:20 PM »
The deeper you go, the smaller the marks appear on your screen. If your in deeper water, it may be hard/impossible to see your jig or differentiate fish from bottom if they donít come up at least a couple feet. When you zoom in, that part of the screen will be seen like your in shallow water.

Offline vaughan

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #31 on: Aug 08, 2018, 03:43 PM »
Does the zoom give you any big advantage if you usually fish in water 15í or les?

Offline DR.SPECKLER

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #32 on: Aug 08, 2018, 03:44 PM »
I barely use zoom in shallow water..maybe 40ft and over.also if you dont fish perch or walleyes often zoom really isnt needed.gills and crappies will be suspended alot of times.and years of use with my vexs i can see a fin flicker on the bottom pretty easy without zoom.jmo

Offline marknpanfish

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #33 on: Aug 08, 2018, 03:55 PM »
 I agree with  piersm2 about the Helix 7.  You can use it in the boat also. I would like to know where to find a new Ice-ducer for $36.

Offline HWeber

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #34 on: Aug 08, 2018, 04:13 PM »
If the fish are in the bottom 5 feet I'm using zoom,  unless it's only 5 ft deep  ;D you see more of what's going on.  if you're always fishing suspended fish I could see not having it,  gotta spend a decent amount of $ to be able to zoom in on suspended fish

Offline slipperybob

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #35 on: Aug 08, 2018, 06:18 PM »
Does the zoom give you any big advantage if you usually fish in water 15í or les?

I use Marcum and I'll say that it is not required to use Zoom on the first setting of 20'.  It is rare that I would fish exactly 20' bottom and to say that first 3' of blindness just below the transducer is of any use.  Zoom is a handicap on that first setting.  If the fish are biting anything you throw down the hole, then that's about the only advantage because you're trying to get less bites.  Trying to avoid the aggressive dinks and trying to target the bigger ones that appears to be laying on the bottom.

The fish aren't actually on the bottom, but are just further away from your sonar return.


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Offline vaughan

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Re: Entry level flasher? Many models?
« Reply #36 on: Aug 08, 2018, 09:58 PM »
Ok so I read all the posts and thought I would see what is available for sale for the Vexilar FL-18.  I was surprised to see all the different FL-18.  There was the Fish Finder, the Ice Pro, the 12 Degree, the Pro Pack II, the Genz Pack and the Genz Pack 12 Degree.

Can anyone give me a quick explanation of these different FL-18?  I really donít want to be a pain ita but this all of a sudden got very confusing for someone who is looking to get his first flasher.

Thanks to all, the info has been very useful.

Offline slipperybob

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Re: Entry level flasher? Many models?
« Reply #37 on: Aug 08, 2018, 10:38 PM »
Ok so I read all the posts and thought I would see what is available for sale for the Vexilar FL-18.  I was surprised to see all the different FL-18.  There was the Fish Finder, the Ice Pro, the 12 Degree, the Pro Pack II, the Genz Pack and the Genz Pack 12 Degree.

Can anyone give me a quick explanation of these different FL-18?  I really donít want to be a pain ita but this all of a sudden got very confusing for someone who is looking to get his first flasher.

Thanks to all, the info has been very useful.
It took me about three years of watching, reading, and looking before I actually bought my first flasher.  I did buy the Marcum LX5 in the end.  I did use a lot of the features that the unit came with.  As time went by, years later, I find myself using the most basic feature.  Turn the unit on and go. 

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Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #38 on: Aug 08, 2018, 11:48 PM »
I use Marcum and I'll say that it is not required to use Zoom on the first setting of 20'.  It is rare that I would fish exactly 20' bottom and to say that first 3' of blindness just below the transducer is of any use.  Zoom is a handicap on that first setting.

I couldn't disagree with this more. Zoom is a huge difference. The only time I don't have bottom zoom on is if I'm in 6ft or less. Zoom is never a handicap......unless u have a unit where it can't display the entire water column and bottom zoom at the same time.

A simple example I'll use is when fishing upper red lake. A lot of times a person is in 9-15 ft depths. By having the 6ft bottom zoom on one side and the full water column on the other it allows a person to pick off mud flap crappies when they come in Suspended. Yet allows a person to better detect the bottom hugging walleyes that need to be teased up over to bite. Sometimes it's a 5min deal to get them teased up.
 Not all sonars have a 3ft blind spot.

Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #39 on: Aug 08, 2018, 11:52 PM »
If the fish are in the bottom 5 feet I'm using zoom,  unless it's only 5 ft deep  ;D you see more of what's going on.  if you're always fishing suspended fish I could see not having it,  gotta spend a decent amount of $ to be able to zoom in on suspended fish

Not really....if a school comes it just short bus it (if your in a 40ft setting and the fish are in a 15-20 foot zone just flip it to a 20ft setting you won't have a "bottom" but you will have the fish marks zoomed in.

Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Entry level flasher? Many models?
« Reply #40 on: Aug 09, 2018, 12:24 AM »
Ok so I read all the posts and thought I would see what is available for sale for the Vexilar FL-18.  I was surprised to see all the different FL-18.  There was the Fish Finder, the Ice Pro, the 12 Degree, the Pro Pack II, the Genz Pack and the Genz Pack 12 Degree.

Can anyone give me a quick explanation of these different FL-18?  I really donít want to be a pain ita but this all of a sudden got very confusing for someone who is looking to get his first flasher.

Thanks to all, the info has been very useful.

An FL 18 is a good solid model with the options a person really needs IMO. Bottom zoom and LP mode.

An FL18 is an FL18.....it's the "head" unit.

The pack is the carrying pack that the head Unit is mounted on. Personal preference would determine which pack you want. Genz, pro pack, or ultra pack. Genz is a no thrills blue box. Pro pack and untra pack allow for accessories to be mounted on the packs.

The degree is the type of transducer u get/have with it. i think vexilar has a 9* (pro view) 12* and a 19* for single degree transducers. The chart below will show you how much of a viewing area you will get with the degree cone in the water depth.




So if you fish from depths of 5-40 ft.....or varying depths. Want do you want.....a tri beam which is a transducer with a switch that can change between a 9-12-20 degree transducer.

So....if you want a bullet proof no frills unit for cheap with the accessories a guy really "needs" I would suggest this.

Get a referbished fl18 Genz box from vexilar with whatever transducer comes with it. Then purchase a tribeam for it. Take the other transducer and sell it, or keep it for a spare incase something would happen to your main transducer.

Offline slipperybob

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #41 on: Aug 09, 2018, 01:06 AM »
I couldn't disagree with this more. Zoom is a huge difference. The only time I don't have bottom zoom on is if I'm in 6ft or less. Zoom is never a handicap......unless u have a unit where it can't display the entire water column and bottom zoom at the same time.

A simple example I'll use is when fishing upper red lake. A lot of times a person is in 9-15 ft depths. By having the 6ft bottom zoom on one side and the full water column on the other it allows a person to pick off mud flap crappies when they come in Suspended. Yet allows a person to better detect the bottom hugging walleyes that need to be teased up over to bite. Sometimes it's a 5min deal to get them teased up.
 Not all sonars have a 3ft blind spot.

Upper Red Lake is really a good example of a handicap for the LX5 zoom and all.

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Online filetandrelease

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #42 on: Aug 09, 2018, 06:23 AM »
The fl 18 is a good dependable unit  , ,I had fished mine to 100í with no issues with a 12* ice ducer  ,  I owned  my fl18 deep for 12 years before selling it , , check out vexilar website and look at the reconditioned units , 2 year warranty on the unit and 1 year on the battery , but as others have mentioned, Marcum is also a great unit ,
     

Offline hnd

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Re: Entry level flasher? Many models?
« Reply #43 on: Aug 09, 2018, 08:04 AM »
Ok so I read all the posts and thought I would see what is available for sale for the Vexilar FL-18.  I was surprised to see all the different FL-18.  There was the Fish Finder, the Ice Pro, the 12 Degree, the Pro Pack II, the Genz Pack and the Genz Pack 12 Degree.

Can anyone give me a quick explanation of these different FL-18?  I really donít want to be a pain ita but this all of a sudden got very confusing for someone who is looking to get his first flasher.

Thanks to all, the info has been very useful.

the fl18 is a good unit but equally featured if not more features units can be had less expensively.  the ice 35 and the M1 come to mind.  and you just buy them.  no silly option.

the fl18 has different "packs"  that vary.  for entry level genz is all you need. 
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Online filetandrelease

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #44 on: Aug 09, 2018, 03:07 PM »

The convenience of the pro pack it will fit in a pail , and the 18 also comes in a deep version
     

Offline vaughan

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #45 on: Aug 09, 2018, 06:52 PM »
Will the ICE 35 fit in a 5 gal pail?

Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #46 on: Aug 09, 2018, 11:10 PM »
Will the ICE 35 fit in a 5 gal pail?

The Humminbird units aren't bad if you get a good one. The ice 35 has the options your looking for. However do some research. I know guys were having some issues with the humminbird units. Also I know the Marcum's were having motors go out. They might have fixed them though. Not sure.

Offline Chris338378

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #47 on: Aug 10, 2018, 08:04 AM »
I don't know if you have any experience with flashers or have a preference between the traditional style flasher or the graph style but the Showdown is a super simple machine to use, the top of the screen is the top of the water column and the bottom is the bottom of the water column, anything in between is either your jig or a fish.  Some guys don't like it because it's not a color display but I don't mind that.  I've had mine for going on four or five years, like it a lot, and haven't had any issues with it.  The main reason I got it was because I never used a flasher before and found looking at a multicolored circle confusing.  Yeah the multicolor display is nice but it wasn't a make or break issue for me.  If you're looking to stay with the traditional style flasher I'd go with the Marcum M1 or M3 flashers.  The M3 is around $450 but if you watch for deals you can get it on sale cheaper.  When it comes to the different brands it's pretty much a Ford, Chevy, Dodge type of thing.  I'm not a fan of Vexilars but they are good machines and work well.  One of the biggest things is don't beat the crap out of the machine and it'll last you a long time.

Offline Spider1

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #48 on: Aug 10, 2018, 08:55 AM »
I have an Ice-45 and it fits in a 5gl pail. I've had the 'bird for several years and I haven't had any problems with it.

Offline hnd

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #49 on: Aug 10, 2018, 12:40 PM »
I don't know if you have any experience with flashers or have a preference between the traditional style flasher or the graph style but the Showdown is a super simple machine to use, the top of the screen is the top of the water column and the bottom is the bottom of the water column, anything in between is either your jig or a fish.  Some guys don't like it because it's not a color display but I don't mind that.  I've had mine for going on four or five years, like it a lot, and haven't had any issues with it.  The main reason I got it was because I never used a flasher before and found looking at a multicolored circle confusing.  Yeah the multicolor display is nice but it wasn't a make or break issue for me.  If you're looking to stay with the traditional style flasher I'd go with the Marcum M1 or M3 flashers.  The M3 is around $450 but if you watch for deals you can get it on sale cheaper.  When it comes to the different brands it's pretty much a Ford, Chevy, Dodge type of thing.  I'm not a fan of Vexilars but they are good machines and work well.  One of the biggest things is don't beat the crap out of the machine and it'll last you a long time.

2 guys i ice fish with both have showdowns they bought at farm and fleet on clearance 2 years ago.  both are "upgrading" to flashers this year.  they do do their job but they much rather prefered the color scheme of the vex/marcums they've seen.   
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Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #50 on: Aug 10, 2018, 10:35 PM »
2 guys i ice fish with both have showdowns they bought at farm and fleet on clearance 2 years ago.  both are "upgrading" to flashers this year.  they do do their job but they much rather prefered the color scheme of the vex/marcums they've seen.

I bought a showdown on clearance for $99 sold it two years later for $250. Best day ever is when I sold it. The unit worked fine, but just a cheaply made, and poorly thought out unit. Here is the problems/issues I found with it.

1. In cold it needs the heater turned on to keep the unit running without lag....heater drains battery faster, but works. When it's really cold the unit slows down.
2. The plastic arm to hold the transducer breaks like a tooth pick in the cold.
3. When in zoom mode you can't see the full water column....only the zoomed area.
5. Buttons wear easy and new face plate is required.
6. No multi beam transducer
7. Blows fuses easy
8. Fits down an 8in hole.

Offline FlamDragger

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #51 on: Aug 11, 2018, 01:27 PM »
I bought a showdown on clearance for $99 sold it two years later for $250. Best day ever is when I sold it. The unit worked fine, but just a cheaply made, and poorly thought out unit. Here is the problems/issues I found with it.

1. In cold it needs the heater turned on to keep the unit running without lag....heater drains battery faster, but works. When it's really cold the unit slows down.
2. The plastic arm to hold the transducer breaks like a tooth pick in the cold.
3. When in zoom mode you can't see the full water column....only the zoomed area.
5. Buttons wear easy and new face plate is required.
6. No multi beam transducer
7. Blows fuses easy
8. Fits down an 8in hole.
the unit canít slow down. Thereís no motor. When I raise my jig, it shows it in REAL TIME. Upgraded to an aluminum arm. Upgraded to a bigger fuse. My showdown helps me catch fish. period

Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #52 on: Aug 11, 2018, 02:13 PM »
the unit canít slow down. Thereís no motor. When I raise my jig, it shows it in REAL TIME. Upgraded to an aluminum arm. Upgraded to a bigger fuse. My showdown helps me catch fish. period

Lol....it does, can, and will. It slows down when the temp is cold. Hence why it has an internal heater that you turn on. Has nothing to do with a motor. The heater only helps so much. IMO it's an overpriced POS. You can argue all you want with me, but I owned one for 3-4yrs and got rid of it because othe unit would not show real time when in the cold. When you watch the unit and feel the bite before the lines on the dispaly are on top of each other it's pretty worthless. 90%+ of the time the heater worked good enough in it......but I expect 100% when I buy a unit. The showdown works, but it is no way comparable to a flasher for overall Preformance. It might be a step above a bobber......when the internal heater keeps the head warm enough to show real time.

I did get a $30 aluminum arm for it....got that back out of it when I sold it on eBay. Add that to the price of the slowdown and you might has well buy a real flasher that won't slowdown & will show zoom and the full water column at the same time.

Offline hnd

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #53 on: Aug 13, 2018, 11:15 AM »
anything is better than nothing thats for sure.  i just think there is better product to be had for the money.   i'd rather use a 20 yr old fl8. 
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Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #54 on: Aug 13, 2018, 10:24 PM »
anything is better than nothing thats for sure.  i just think there is better product to be had for the money.   i'd rather use a 20 yr old fl8.

Your correct....I was a little harsh towards the showdown. It was always just a frustrating unit for me. I did all the "upgrades" and with the last one it finally worked half @$$. The vertical display was nice, however it's not worth it when you can't have zoom and the full water display on at the same time.

I will give marcum's credit with the LX 7 and above stuff. Being able to play with the displays is nice when you can have the vertical zoom and full water column on the screen at the same time...if I remember correctly I think you can have both those and a scrolling graph too...

Did they ever get the top 3ft blind spot fixed with it?

Offline hnd

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #55 on: Aug 14, 2018, 10:16 AM »
kind of.  i just didn't think of it as too much of an issue.  ice fishing 3' of water and having a flasher not work well just doesn't seem like a valid complaint to me.  how often is someone fishing that shallow.  even my vexilars in lp mode could barely show you anything in 3' of water.  my lx5 maybe works in 2.5' tops. 
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Offline midwest_rodworks

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #56 on: Aug 14, 2018, 01:43 PM »
Yes and no on the LX7 update, fished a lake last year that was 3-4ft and used my LX7, and it worked, if you fished directly below the transducer, the other guys I was fishing with had a FL-18 and FLX-28 and had to do the exact same thing.  The thing about fishing super shallow is your cone is tiny at that depth even at 20 degree.
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Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #57 on: Aug 14, 2018, 06:37 PM »
I wasn't thinking so much has fishing in 3' of water. More along the lines that your fishing a 7-8ft deep lake with 2ft of ice. So your fishing in 5ft of water......with the 3ft blind spot on top......you can only read the bottom 2ft. So if a crappie comes in suspended you can't see it. We have a few prarrie lakes like that around here.

Offline Seamonkey84

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #58 on: Aug 14, 2018, 09:43 PM »
are you talking about not being able to mark anything within three feet of your transducer, or the clutter/interference in the top of the display. Ive had issues not being able to see the first few feet of water column since itís always a cluttered mess.

Offline Agronomist_at_IA

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Re: Entry level flasher?
« Reply #59 on: Aug 14, 2018, 10:14 PM »
are you talking about not being able to mark anything within three feet of your transducer.

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