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Alright guys, its time for me to pick up a good Gps for the big lake. The hand held just dosen't cut it. I'm thinking Lowrance or garmin. I have a nice fish finder so I only need the Gps. Whats the diffrence between a gps and chartplotter? Whats some things to look for and avoid. Is a color gps worth it? looking for a good one but not something thats over kill. Thanks

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Alright you got it out of me, I'll tell you everything I kmow about GPS.

It means global positioning system. grin.gif

(and a chartploter plots a chart)

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The GPS just puts your postion on a blank screen. You add in waypoints as you discover them but it won't give you anything you don't already know. The chartplotter adds a map of varying detail to the GPS function. You can run over to Bayfield and know exactly what depths are and where the reefs are. If you get fogged in you can still get back to the marina (carefully...it isn't radar). I have the Lowrance X15 monochrome unit with the western Great Lake chip from Navionics. The X15 is a sounder and a chartplotter. For the limited space on my CC it is what is required. When navigating the Chartplotter is up and when fishing, either the sounder is up or I do a split screen. This unit has been great for me…not one complaint although I have heard that guys with dual fx transducers have some problems with the transducers going bad on them (you still wouldn’t lose the chartplotter function). Lowrance discontinued the X15 so you can get them for very low prices on Ebay right now. If you want to go color then there are a lot of new color units on the market and some discontinued models too. The Navionics chip has LOTW, Rainy, Superior, Michigan and Huron on it (I think Huron is included). You can zoom into something like 1/16 of a nm in most ports, not quite that low on the big lake. It has helped me get home safely MANY times when I’ve gotten stuck in fog or running home after dark. The definition of the screen is great and, in combination with the chip, it provides as much detail as I need to run on Superior and Michigan (goes up past the 23 bridge too). My dad has a monochrome Garmin that works well but the screen definition doesn’t seem to be as good as the Lowrance (he agreed…he bought an X19 last summer).

If money were no object (when does that happen), I’d go for the Raymarine C120 or E120 units that allow for integrating the sounder, chartplotter and radar onto one head. I know that some folks are leery about the all-in-ones but I think it would be a sweet deal. I’ll keep the X15 for the bowmount and use it if the other goes down.

You are welcome to climb on board my boat and try out the X15 if you like. I’m not sure there are a lot of differences between it and the newer color models so you can get an idea of whether or not you like the keystrokes and features. It doesn’t give you the security of radar but it WILL get you home in all sorts of weather. Just put radar on your wish list!!!

Lota Lota…

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Outdoor,

I run a Lowrance GlobalMap 4800M on my boat, keeping it seperate from my sounder. Just in case one unit goes down, hopefully I will have one or the other to navigate somewhat with.

The unit has a 5 inch screen and is black and white where I run the new Navionics Premium chip in it, allowing me to have depth contours of not only Lake Superior, but thousands of inland lakes in WI, MN, IA, and MI. For the price, it is a good unit and Lowrance has excellent customer service. I dont know about the other brands of GPS, but with Lowrance, you can update these units through their website or having them send you these product updates. The updates will allow you to upgrade your GPS to run different chips, etc when they are released from a company.

When I bought my boat, I believe I paid $700.00 for the unit, a chip, and installation. If you dont get a chip right away, you still will have Lake Superior on your unit minus the depth contours and some navigation hazards.

And even though mine is black and white, I can see it pretty well. But the new color units stand out much better in intense lighting situations and a person can read the screen from farther away.

So take a peek at the Lowrance units, you should find one to match your needs, both for performance and price range.

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Thanks lota and Jim, thats the info I was looking for. I'm going to go down to Marine general and have a look. Picked up another boat. A 20ft starcraft, top, inboard, small cabin, in great shape. All redone and ready to fish. Still needs a name. Lots of dash room for the new gps.

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Outdoor

I got a new color Lowrance LMS332C this spring and love it. The visibility of the unit is outstanding in bright sunlight and has 2 dimmer settings for low light/night. I fish Mille Lacs as well and got the LakeMaster Pro with 1 foot contours. It's really amazing how accurate the map is. I also got the Map Create software where you can make your own topo maps for literally all of the US. I made a custom map of Superior which is nice although it does not contain the depth contours. Still need to get better on using the trackplotter which as you may imagine would be invaluable on retracing your last pass. lotalota and JTW spelled it out perfectly ... these units are great - and fun to use too.

Question for lotalota and JTW regarding the Navionics chips. Do you use the depth contours much for Superior fishing? I certainly do on MilleLacs but was wondering whether putting down another couple of bucks for the Navionics chip is really worth it? Let me know when you get a chance.

My bottom line is after using the color unit I'd have a hard time going back to the mono but capability wise, the X15 & 4800 (LMS480 which is the combo sonar/gps) these units are hard to beat. Good luck in your decision.

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Capt_Ron - I have to say I don't NEED the depth ranges a whole lot out of the Twin Ports but they are sure nice. If you have a NOAA chart or a Richardson you can get an idea where you are by using your sounder and looking at the chart. Once I start fishing from Knife River on up to the Canadian side and from Port Wing up past the U.P. it is a different story. There are reefs to look out for and underwater structure to key on for fishing. I wouldn't think about going to Isle Royale or the Canadian shore anymore without the Navionics chip. I know the island well enough to run without it but it is the extra degree of confidence that makes the difference. It is the difference between knowing that Canoe Rocks comes to 6" of water from 600' "around here somewhere" or "right there"...in 6-8 and fog it feels pretty important. For me, it was worth the $200 the first time I ran right to my favorite bobbing hump and then again the first time I was able to confidently make a 50 mile run from the north end of Isle Royale to Grand Portage in pea soup.

Lota Lota...

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lota, one more question smile.gif Have you ever tried the trip tree rods holders? I need to put some rod holders in the new boat. Trying to decide if I should go with single spaced out or triple tree holders. I was just wondering if you can get the rods tips far enough apart to keep from getting a mess with the trees? Thanks

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I haven't used those rod holders before. Maybe OutdoorNut can give you a little insight into how he likes the rod holders on his rack. If I remember correctly they are spaced pretty close together. I do hold 10 rods in the riggers and rod holders on my boat. The only time they get messed up is if I try to run with the dipsy on one of them or when one of the spoons or sticks comes off in rough weather. That'll create a certified, "get out the knife and cut it loose" mess.

Lota Lota...

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Thanks lota, I'm going to have to jump aboard the cc and check it out. I just want to get the new boat rigged right. Hate to have to drill the wrong holes all over the place. Anyone else ever try the rod holders on a rack. Jim how about you? I ask alot of questions, but I would rather learn for others mistakes then my own smirk.gif I have enough of them.

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krinkle6iy.jpg

That should be better!

O.R.

Here is the set up on the Krinkle, with an overhead rack.

From back to front. (2) Capt. Pack Big Jons, (2) Cannon Outdowns (2) full adjustable rod holders. On the rack I have to mounted almost hoiz. on each side (8-10" apart vertically) they I have the top corner holders at a 45 out towards the planner board on each side. The rest are mounted at 30 degrees @ 12" apart and are in a fixed position. Then we have our mast mounted to the bow of the boat.

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Sorry about the size, one of these days, I'll learn how to resize them. Also sorry about the goffy pic, I was just sitting down and reading my new issue, got up and did a pose for my buddy's camera, never thought I'd have to use it, but I hope it helps, it was the only good picture I have of the rod holders and etc.

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SWEET!!! That should be posted on the "other site"!!! So, you don't have problems with the rods getting tangled...right???

Lota Lota...

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I had a little miss when I tried running (2) Dipsy's and an outdown on the same side, but I think that was because I wasn't getting enough seperation due to the fact I wanted to keep by dipsy's running less than 12 feet down. That should not be a problem now that I can start running them deeper and farther away from the spread.

I'd like to try and max it out once on a calm day I'm thinking you could stack the two Big Jon riggers, run a long line (or two) off the rack, one in each outdown, a couple dipsy's (or two) and three off of each planer. You can get yourself a nice "school" of bait passing through the water.

O.R.,

If you think the tree is a ticket for you, get a hold of me. The guy that did up my rack and posts does good work for a fair price.

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nut, thats kind of what one of my buddys runs. Just his dosen't look that nice. The soft top on the new boat is high and I'm not sure I want to go that way, at least not this year. How hard is it to get to your mast up front on your boat, I think i have to go to spilt mast in the middle of the boat. Its just to hard to get up front on the new one. Thanks for the info guys

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OR - I put pulley pull-lines on the planer line when I have the canvas up. It allows me to pull it back to me in order to set releases without climbing up under the canvas every time I need a line set (wishful thinking, eh?). It makes a big difference in useablility of the canvas.

ON - What kind of separation do those rods have when you are underway in rough weather? Do they get all wound up in each other or do they all whip around at the same time and stay apart?

Lota Lota...

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I use a wood rod with a hook on the end to grab my planer line, no hanging out or reaching in rough water.

With the one foot of separation and the fact we always run "clean" rods, we've never had them tangle. It looks kind of rhythmic when they all get going in the same motion! The first couple times out in the chop and running in I always kept an eye on them to see if they moved in and out of the holders at all. They aren't going anywhere once they are in there. We added flood lights since the picture was taken, them are nice when your at the landing @ 3:30!!

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Hey OR, just bumped into these eslewhere...

Sorry Scott, bad links.

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

Nice rack Nate.

Randy, if can work the rack into your setup they really are nice to have. I'll fill the holders up at the launch which gets some rods out of the way. They'll stay there till I need them and when running boards I'll set the rods there as well.

Tangles aren't a problem. You'll see I have 6 rod holders on mine plus I have the planner reels mounted on the rack along with the pulleys.

rod%20holders.jpg

I like that better then the mast in the bow. One reason because you don't have to run to the bow to clip on a line second reason they are in the center of the boat so when you make a turn or slight adjustment and your not killing a board.

I've also incorporated my top into the rack. It happily folds up to the rack and it out of the way when not in use.

You'll still need other rod holders and I have 16 more but the rack sure is nice.

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Frank,

Who did your canvas? I'm looking for the same type of setup. The soonest I can get to someone is the end of July. Are you going to get the boat wet this weekend?

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

Its a Bimini off another boat that I modified. Originally I was going to make the whole thing from scratch but this seemed to fit good without a bunch of work. If your in the buying mood you should be able to find a Bimini top from Cabelas. If you have a sewing machine and a pipe bender it really wouldn't be hard to make your own. Hardest part is rounding up the fasteners and fitting. I know you were paying attention in Home-Ec class and not screwing around the sewing part is easy. You know I like rigging boats and if you'd like could give you some ideas.

I'm planning on hitting the lake but might be inspecting and test driving a 21' Starcraft for BC Saturday and hauling it home.

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Thanks Frank!

Yeah 100% attention in Home E! Actually skipped that class and opted for the cooking classes. My wife thanks me dearly for that. She can't cook a frozen pizza!

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