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Which down speed & temp system do you recommend?


Todd in NY

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Your fish finder will not tell you how deep your riggers are. It only tells you how far away the ball is from the transducer. Think of it like this. Take a 12" string and hold the top. Where you pinch it is the transducer. The string should be going straight down due to gravity. Now with your other hand arch the bottom of the string back.  Your FF will say it's 12" deep, as the string is still 12" long and that far from the transducer. But as you pull it back you will see it starts to come off the bottom.  Your FF has no way of telling how far back or off the bottom the ball is, only how far the ball is away from the transducer. 

 

You need a probe to tell you the true depth.

You are correct, and I hope it didn't sound like I was saying that my FF can give me the exact depth of my rigger weight. All I was trying to say is that it allows me to see where my rigger ball is running in relation to any fish I might mark on my FF. It gives me a ballpark idea, which is why I am wanting to buy a down speed/temp/depth system before I hit the lake this spring, so I will know the exact depth/speed/temp at the ball.

 

I will most likely just stick with my 10lb weights until I upgrade to a new set of riggers, and that won't happen until my old Mag 10A's bite the dust.

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Todd. The issue is where you measure fish is right under the transducer. The top of the arch is the true depth of the fish (assuming you have a hard return). So even if your ball looks like it's at the same depth as the fish it isn't.

The fish is likely 20 ft or so deeper.

Edited by TyeeTanic
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Todd. The issue is where you measure fish is right under the transducer. The top of the arch is the true depth of the fish (assuming you have a hard return). So even if your ball looks like it's at the same depth as the fish it isn't.

The fish is likely 20 ft or so deeper.

Ok, I see what you are saying. Thanks.

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Todd. The issue is where you measure fish is right under the transducer. The top of the arch is the true depth of the fish (assuming you have a hard return). So even if your ball looks like it's at the same depth as the fish it isn't.

The fish is likely 20 ft or so deeper.

 

What if the fish is near the ball?

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What if the fish is near the ball?

Almost not possible to measure a fish 60 ft behind the transom and get a hard return. The fish is not dense enough. You might see fish out but the color will always be light (soft signals). If you see that Brite yellow core in the arch it's basically under your transducer.

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Todd. The issue is where you measure fish is right under the transducer. The top of the arch is the true depth of the fish (assuming you have a hard return). So even if your ball looks like it's at the same depth as the fish it isn't.

The fish is likely 20 ft or so deeper.

20' deeper?  When laker fishing, I keep my rigger weights within 3' of the bottom ( I keep dropping the ball and make bottom contact) and mark the top of the arches level with the rigger ball. There is no way the fish can be 20' below the ball.     

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20' deeper? When laker fishing, I keep my rigger weights within 3' of the bottom ( I keep dropping the ball and make bottom contact) and mark the top of the arches level with the rigger ball. There is no way the fish can be 20' below the ball.

I don't fish for mud chickens. I fish salmon. And how do you know your ball is 3' from the bottom? I assume you have a probe or bounce bottom. If you have blow back the top of the fish arch WILL NOT be at the same depth as the ball on your FF if you are truly at the same depth as the fish. It's the laws of physics.

The only way to have the ball level with the fish is of you have minimal blowback which can be done by reducing your speed and or increasing your ball weight. If you are using a 16 lb ball the blow back is minimal. If you travel 1.5 mph down speed the blowback is significantly less than say 2.5 mph.

Also if you are bouncing bottom and the fish arch is the same level as the ball then you won't see much of a fish arch. Most of the fish arch will be below the bottom of the lake.

Please post a picture of what you are saying including your speed and ball weight and everything will be easy to explain.

Edited by TyeeTanic
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"Debates" like these are the reason I started this thread, and it's why I am buying a down speed/temp/depth system, because I want to take the guess work out of where my baits are running. I like seeing my rigger weight on my FF because I won't have a probe on every rigger. But I will be able to use the rigger with the probe on it to get a better idea of how much the blow back is affecting my rigger depth vs the depth counter.

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I don't fish for mud chickens. I fish salmon. And how do you know your ball is 3' from the bottom? I assume you have a probe or bounce bottom. If you have blow back the top of the fish arch WILL NOT be at the same depth as the ball on your FF if you are truly at the same depth as the fish. It's the laws of physics.

The only way to have the ball level with the fish is of you have minimal blowback which can be done by reducing your speed and or increasing your ball weight. If you are using a 16 lb ball the blow back is minimal. If you travel 1.5 mph down speed the blowback is significantly less than say 2.5 mph.

Also if you are bouncing bottom and the fish arch is the same level as the ball then you won't see much of a fish arch. Most of the fish arch will be below the bottom of the lake.

Please post a picture of what you are saying including your speed and ball weight and everything will be easy to explain.

I keep bottom contact and raise it up 3-5'.  I always keep dropping them to make sure I'm close to bottom.  If my ball is dragging bottom, I raise the rigger up 3-5', I'm not far off the bottom.  With my graph zoomed on the bottom, I will mark arches that the top off the arch is level with the ball.  I do not run a probe that close to the bottom.  I run a third rigger with a probe off the bottom that is clean (no rod).  At the speeds I run, blow back is not an issue.  The cable angle is next to nothing unless there is a ton of current. I run mostly .8 - 1.8 ball speed.  I run 12lb weights.  I don't have any pictures of what I'm talking about.  This summer I can get you one. 

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You don't need to send a picture. If there's no blow back then the rigger line is almost vertical and the ball height will come close to the fish arch height.

For salmon fishing we need to run at 2.5 mph and the blowback is considerable putting the ball 60 ft behind the boat and lifting it about 20 ft off the depth you think it is. If you don't drop the rigger weight by that depth then the ball will be above the target depth by that amount.

It's a different game when you're going 2.5 mph down speed and in +100 ft of target depth.

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I don't fish for mud chickens. I fish salmon. And how do you know your ball is 3' from the bottom? I assume you have a probe or bounce bottom. If you have blow back the top of the fish arch WILL NOT be at the same depth as the ball on your FF if you are truly at the same depth as the fish. It's the laws of physics.

The only way to have the ball level with the fish is of you have minimal blowback which can be done by reducing your speed and or increasing your ball weight. If you are using a 16 lb ball the blow back is minimal. If you travel 1.5 mph down speed the blowback is significantly less than say 2.5 mph.

Also if you are bouncing bottom and the fish arch is the same level as the ball then you won't see much of a fish arch. Most of the fish arch will be below the bottom of the lake.

Please post a picture of what you are saying including your speed and ball weight and everything will be easy to explain.

If you pick up your rigger ball on the FF and also mark a fish with both marks at the same depth then I would have to say they are the same depth. I can pick up my 16lbs. torpedos in 140 FOW with my FF and have marked fish at the same depth and some fish above them running 2.5 mph at the ball.

 

Granted the rigger counter and depth finder don't agree on depth but they are within 10'.  10' in my experience won't make that much of if a fish will hit. I swear I have hit them in the head with my rigger ball and they still won't take the bait.

Edited by Chas0218
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If you pick up your rigger ball on the FF and also mark a fish with both marks at the same depth then I would have to say they are the same depth. I can pick up my 16lbs. torpedos in 140 FOW with my FF and have marked fish at the same depth and some fish above them running 2.5 mph at the ball.

 

Granted the rigger counter and depth finder don't agree on depth but they are within 10'.  10' in my experience won't make that much of if a fish will hit. I swear I have hit them in the head with my rigger ball and they still won't take the bait.

I can relate to your last statement. I have dragged my rigger ball through good fish marks and almost never got one to take the bait. Every time I see it I tell my son to keep an eye on the rod tips... and then nothing happens. Change speed, change course, then I get a hit on a shallower dipsy from a fish I didn't see on the FF. I have one word to describe it... Fishology.

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I crank 14's on my unitrolls and that ishard work.

I just got some Penn hand crankers for my 16ft utility semi-v, and I'm going to limit myself to 10 pounders on those :muscle: . The owners manual says up to 14lbs. Come to think of it, I have some older 6 or 8lb rigger balls laying around that I might use on lakes that have no current.

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If you pick up your rigger ball on the FF and also mark a fish with both marks at the same depth then I would have to say they are the same depth. I can pick up my 16lbs. torpedos in 140 FOW with my FF and have marked fish at the same depth and some fish above them running 2.5 mph at the ball.

Granted the rigger counter and depth finder don't agree on depth but they are within 10'. 10' in my experience won't make that much of if a fish will hit. I swear I have hit them in the head with my rigger ball and they still won't take the bait.

Chas I hate to say but this is not correct. A fish is not dense like a lead 16 lb weight. When you detect a fish and you see the top of the fish arch it is basically at the same position as the transducer.

The weight is way behind the transducer and the sonar translates the distance back as depth.

Don't believe me? Then I have a question for you. Why do fish show up as arches on your fish finder? Why does that arch actually transition through like 20 ft of depth (point say starts at 80 ft comes up to 60 ft and then pack down to 80 ft)? What is the right depth of the fish (60 or 80 ft, or something in between)?

The answer is the arch is created as the fish comes into the sonar cone and at first it's as far as it can be away from the transducer, then it comes under the transducer (as close as it's going to get) and then the boat moves away from the fish and it starts getting further from the transducer again until it is outside of the cone again.

The FF has no way of telling the exact depth it can only tell you how FAR the fish is away from the transducer and displays that as depth on the screen. So when it first spots the fish it's far away (so shows deeper 80ft) then it is under the transducer and closer (gradually shows shallower to peak of 60ft) and then it goes away from the transducer again (gradually shows deeper until signal is lost at 80ft).

Same with your ball. The FF may say it's 100 ft down but actually it's 100 ft away and behind the boat due to blowback. The ball is lifted as it swings back and is actually sitting at 70 or 80 ft deep. Fish finder incorrectly says 100 ft deep.

Anyhow look up YouTube videos on it. The science is out there and it's the fact. If you don't believe me, no problem, carry on.

Edited by TyeeTanic
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Topic started of about down temp and speed units but morphed into talking about cannon balls.. Time to take the ADD meds.!!!

LOL..

We are arguing about the need for a depth probe. Some people think they know the depth of their rigger because they can see the ball on the FF and say you don't need a depth probe. That is incorrect.

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The FF has no way of telling the exact depth it can only tell you how FAR the fish is away from the transducer and displays that as depth on the screen. So when it first spots the fish it's far away (so shows deeper 80ft) then it is under the transducer and closer (gradually shows shallower to peak of 60ft) and then it goes away from the transducer again (gradually shows deeperror until signal is lost at 80ft).

 

Tyee is correct, but this is not very hard to understand.  Just visualize a cone moving through the water while intercepting both stationary and moving objects as they pass through the cone from different locations on the cone and it becomes very easy to understand the difference between displayed depth and actual depth.

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