Fishing Forum
Skip to Content


Fishing Forum > Utah Fishing Forum : Fishing Gear, Gadgets, Techinques, Tactics &Tips >

Ice fishing Transducer question

fishing
Report Post | Register to Reply
Ice fishing Transducer question
Hope it's ok to post this here.

I am getting a finder ready for ice fishing. It is a HB Helix 7 that has an ice fishing flasher mode. It requires an ice fishing transducer that looks like a bell shape with the cable coming straight up out of the tip of the cone (looks like the transducers you see with standard flasher finders like vexilar).

Being an old electrical guy, I don't like the transducer, which has some weight to it, hanging directly on the cable. Seems like there should be some strain relief.

The standard depth finder graph type unit I have used for ice fishing has the transducer like you mount on your boat. I mounted it on a short piece of pvc pipe and tie wrapped the cable to the pipe. No strain on the connection of the cable to the ducer.

What have others done, or do you just go ahead and use the transducer as it is?

Appreciate any info, experience on this.
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [Crimson] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
What you have done should work just fine, I have done the same. If you are concerned about the bell shape transducer you could always tie a string to the cord near the transducer then to the box eliminating the weight on the power connection. If the transducer comes with the sonar unit I would think it to be approved for use as is.
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [r2u2] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
I have two Vexilars, my wife has one, my son has two. None of us have done anything to ours. I have had my oldest vex for about 15 years. We have never had an issue with any of them. I did replace the transducer on my wife's (upgraded it) a couple of years ago but that was due to it getting banged around and the crystals went bad. Other than that, ours have worked flawlessly for many years.
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [kj] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
Thanks to R2U2 and Kj for the input.

Yes, since the information that came with the transducer shows it hanging down the hole by the cable only, It must be designed for use that way.

Thanks for the responses.
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [Crimson] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
I use a Lowrance elite 5 with the ice ducer hanging from the cable. I bet Iíve hole hopped 1,000+ times, no issues. When I move, it gets tossed in the sled. I donít even scoop the hole out, just plunge the ducer down through the slush. I donít abuse my stuff, but it gets used hard- maybe a little abuse, but itís never stopped working. If I had to baby it, Iíd look at something else. I found transducers never center up if you modify them. The ice ducer is always pointed straight down and I can see my jigs every time.
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [Crimson] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
As MACMAN wrote, they self adjust and hang straight down if they just hang by themselves. It appears that Vexilar has the patent to the float on the cable and I wasn't impressed with having to locate my Marcum next to the ice hole and drop the cable through a plastic arm attached to the side of the Marcum. I purchased a Vexilar float and attached it to the cable and just drop it quickly in the ice hole. I could have also used one of those noodles that are meant for children to play with in the water.


"If I fished only to capture fish, my fishing trips would have ended long ago."
- Zane Grey
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [Crimson] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
Well, I've used both types and I think the boat ducers tend to have a different pattern than the ice ducers do... With the boat it seems to be a fan shaped pattern when the ice ducer tends to be more of a cone pattern... So what I've seen is the boat ducer ends up showing your jig if it's in the pattern, if it's to the side of the fan then you don't see the jig... Where the ice ducer tends to be better at always showing your jig... But both will work, you just need to know that you have different animals that act a little different, so get to know your equipment and then you can judge how to fish it... Good luck... J
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [SkunkedAgain] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
Thanks to both Kentofisnl and Skunkedagain for the useful info.

I am excited to get out and use this set up, and yes, I'm sure a little experience using this type of transducer will help a lot. Just need some ice!

Thanks.
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [Crimson] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
I've used the same set up for years, Crimson.
it works but I have always wondered if I would get a better reading with the ice transducer.

____________________________________________________

Three-fourths of the Earth's surface is water, and one-fourth is land. It is quite clear that the good Lord intended us to spend triple the amount of time fishing as taking care of the lawn.
image/jpeg DSCN4214.JPG (2.74 MB)
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [Crimson] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
Good luck and have fun. J
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [SkunkedAgain] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
That might explain why when jigging from a boat one person's jig is seen on the screen and not the other and then sometimes it switches.

Ronald :)
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [Ahi1953] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
Ahi, I used almost that same set up for years too. Getting an ice transducer was a game changer for me. I no longer spend any time adjusting the pvc support, especially between fish. I found I would leave it in the hole because it was set perfect= tangles. Not only is it a better reading, but much easier to get out of the way and reset. Itís all about the angle of the dangle.
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [RonPaulFan] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
I found with the boat ducer I could rotate the ducer in the hole and see different stuff and I eventually figured out that the boat ducer must be designed to do a wide but not thick swath so as the boat goes by it shows what you just past and the coverage is like a paint brush swath. This works good for trolling but not so good for vertical jigging. The ice ducer gives you that cone shaped pattern so itís easier to keep the jig in the pattern. But like I say, both will work but you may have to use them a little differently. Anyone else notice this or is it just my finder? Later J
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [SkunkedAgain] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
Jeff, Iím nearly 100% sure both transducers shoot a perfect cone. I think that you are experiencing exactly why I had trouble always finding my jigs with pvc contraption/boat transducer. If it isnít exactly perfectly level/plumb, the cone shoots oblong making an oval. Kind of like pointing a flashlight at the floor, tip it slightly and your beam elongates. In my opinion, seeing your jigs is way more important than whatís to the side. I tried even ďaimingĒ mine by tipping and sweeping to find fish, not much success. Iím currently looking at the new technology that sidefinds- thatís going to revolutionize sonar on the ice...Panoptics Livescope. Thatís a life changer and a pocketbook breaker. Iíll think Iíll be using my Lowrance and ice puck for a while.
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [MACMAN] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
That just might be whatís going on, because it explains the narrower fields one direction and wider the other. I thought I had them level but probably not.

Going to check out that panoptics system on the ice up at Henryís this year. One of the guys we go with has that system and Iíve been hearing great things about it. Hope the price will come down so I can afford one someday. It will be awhile though itís about 4X what I dare spend on such things. Sounds pretty nice though. But I too will be happy with my current system for now. Are you signing up for the ice challenge this year? Itís time if you havenít heard. Check out the contest board. Later Jeff
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [SkunkedAgain] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
Yeah, my boy and I are in- Iíll go get on the list now. Let me know how that panoptics works. Iím putting my pennyís in a jar. Are you fishing Henryís with the IS group? I should try to make that lake, itís my favorite.
(This post was edited by MACMAN on Nov 20, 2018, 9:41 PM)
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [MACMAN] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
Yes Iím going with IS group, Iím afraid we might miss the good fishing this year, Iím seeing some monster photos of fish they are pulling out already up there. Got me so antsy Iím almost ready to go early, but I canít for other stuff, but Iíd sure like to.

If you decide to go up next weekend you ought to come join us. At least for the ice expo (show). Seems like this group has some of the coolest ice set ups Iíve ever seen. Lot of very talented guys putting together some neat stuff plus they seem to have an ice addiction so spending isnít an issue for some of them. About Saturday at the Wild Rose will be where and when the gathering peaks but it may scatter this year since the ice will be thicker so the gypsies will scatter. Look for wheelers with tracks and a bunch of other flip type shelters. Iím going to try flying my BFT flag so if you see it come say hey and Iíll point you to the panoptics tent. Matt told me that they have been using it in shallow lakes in the Uintas and itís pretty amazing there so they think deeper lakes will even be better. I donít know if I should even look at it because I donít need to start wanting it.

Thereís a chance weíll be over around the county docks this year, they want big brookies. Later J
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [Crimson] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
I'm an electrical person too and I have the same concerns when it comes to wires and weights, but you have to consider that the engineers who designed the ice transducers are keenly aware of that issue and will design accordingly. As far as I know, Humminbird only makes two models of ice transducers: the sonar model (XI-9-20), which is the one I use with my Humminbird 678 and which should also work with the Helix 7, and the flasher model (XI-9-19). Both of them have two cables: a rubber support cable that attaches to a bracket at the top of the transducer to take all of its weight, and the signal cable that comes out of the top of the transducer (under the bracket) but carries no weight as long as the support cable is used. You shouldn't have any problem with stress on the signal cable.

I used to use the transom mount transducer that came with the unit, but I found that the ice transducer is far superior to it as well as being much easier to use. You can use the foam float that comes with the ice transducer to suspend it in the hole, or you can attach the support cable to a rigid support (like a piece of wood or PVC) over the hole. Either way, in my opinion the ice transducer is the only way to go.
Report Post | Register to Reply
Re: [roynut] Ice fishing Transducer question In reply to
Thanks roynut for the info. I have the x1 9 20 transducer. I will check out the strain relief.