Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

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Riverdog
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by Riverdog »

I have never thought spending much for a shallow water fish finder was a good idea. The area covered in 3-7 feet of water just wasn't much help fishing.
My new side imaging is worth the extra expense. I find myself just trolling around watching the bottom.
I'm still experimenting with the transducer, trying to find the sweet spot. Kept losing the bottom when on plane. The best so far is a bottom signal showing depth, but the depth number showing way off.
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onthewater102
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by onthewater102 »

I didn't see the caption that those were alligator gar on the right initially and was wondering what I was doing wrong that you were able to see such detail in shallow water!

Very cool images just the same.
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Riverdog
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by Riverdog »

onthewater102 wrote:
25 Jul 2019, 09:36
I didn't see the caption that those were alligator gar on the right initially and was wondering what I was doing wrong that you were able to see such detail in shallow water!

Very cool images just the same.
For some reason this one spot has large alligator gars. I've seen some 3 feet long come to the surface. Fish show up as white with a shadow farther away depending on how far off the bottom it is. Just think of the transducer as a flashlight. This has been the longest white image so far, so I just assume it is one of the alligator gars.
This is a picture of the FF so the quality is not as good as the original.

My previous fish finder had down imaging that I thought was garbage. Very disappointed. I'm happy with this one. Just have to work out the on plane issues.
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Last edited by Riverdog on 28 Aug 2019, 16:24, edited 1 time in total.
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BigTerp
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by BigTerp »

I get little use of of my SI (humminbird helix) on the river while smallmouth fishing. I know some guys use it to find underwater ledges, holes, etc. and maybe I need to give that a try. It just seems unproductive to me to be eyeing the sonar while floating down river casting. My next boat will just be sonar/DI and GPS. I use the GPS way more than anything else for marking waypoints (hot spots).

Not sure if you're trying to get a good SI image while on plane, or if you're referring to a sonar readout. but SI image on plane will never happen. Chart speed should match boat speed in MPH for a good SI readout.
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onthewater102
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by onthewater102 »

SI is also great for positioning the boat off a weed edge in the dark.

Locating fish not so much, at least around here where you have such rocky bottoms it's hard to distinguish fish suspended over rock from the rock when the shadows are so repetitive - hence my surprise at the detail of those returns before I realized they were gar. I can find large groups of fish - or fish suspended over soft bottom - but I can't pick out more than a few returns that are clearly fish when scanning a rocky bank with a 30 degree+ slope.

Locating structure fish relate to it's great. If I'm fishing deep enough water where the fish won't spook from the boat going by overhead I'll make a pass by on the SI to find structures then come back and drift over the tops with the std sonar looking down to ID if there are enough residents to be worth casting to it.

Especially useful in the cold water when hunting large groups of wintering fish.
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Riverdog
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by Riverdog »

BigTerp wrote:
26 Jul 2019, 10:16
Not sure if you're trying to get a good SI image while on plane, or if you're referring to a sonar readout. but SI image on plane will never happen. Chart speed should match boat speed in MPH for a good SI readout.
I just need the depth reading while on plane (sonar). In the sonar image it shows a depth of 82 feet while the sonar signal shows around 3.5 feet. My section of river is below a dam, so the level fluctuates quite a bit.
SI is new to me, so I'm still learning. Right now I'm just looking for underwater structures and fish if they stand out. If I see an interesting spot, I'll swing back around and fish it.

onthewater102 wrote:
26 Jul 2019, 10:50

Locating structure fish relate to it's great. If I'm fishing deep enough water where the fish won't spook from the boat going by overhead I'll make a pass by on the SI to find structures then come back and drift over the tops with the std sonar looking down to ID if there are enough residents to be worth casting to it.

Especially useful in the cold water when hunting large groups of wintering fish.
Yep, that's what I've been going. Below is another image of some rocks. Like you said, it's hard to pick any fish out.
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onthewater102
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by onthewater102 »

I'm usually looking a lot deeper than that - in that frame you're only in about 6 FOW +/-, I don't make a 2nd pass on the std sonar unless it's about 15' deep or more because you don't see that much of the bottom looking vertically down, and any shallower than that you're probably not seeing enough of the water column above the bottom structure to tell if there's anything relating to the structure you've identified (unless they're right on the bottom on it)
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Riverdog
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by Riverdog »

onthewater102 wrote:
29 Aug 2019, 13:03
I'm usually looking a lot deeper than that - in that frame you're only in about 6 FOW +/-, I don't make a 2nd pass on the std sonar unless it's about 15' deep or more because you don't see that much of the bottom looking vertically down, and any shallower than that you're probably not seeing enough of the water column above the bottom structure to tell if there's anything relating to the structure you've identified (unless they're right on the bottom on it)
That's exactly why I posted this in the jet boat section. The deepest point in my section of river is maybe 7 feet. It averages 3-4 feet with ankle deep shoals. A down only sonar is a waste other than depth reading. That's why I really like the side imaging. I can almost see from bank to bank. I don't know how good the previous generation SI was, but the mega imaging is awesome, IMO.
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onthewater102
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by onthewater102 »

You mentioned you have the same issue picking fish out on the image when they're in the rocks though right?
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Riverdog
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Side imaging and shallow water. Perfect combo.

Post by Riverdog »

onthewater102 wrote:
29 Aug 2019, 23:13
You mentioned you have the same issue picking fish out on the image when they're in the rocks though right?
Yes. This is my first SI fish finder and I'm still experimenting with settings.
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