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Old 02-25-2021, 12:45 PM   #1
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Depth sounder repeater station options?

I just had the flying bridge repeater for my old Cruising Equipment depth sounder serviced and now the main unit has gone dead. I haven't looked into getting it serviced and am looking around at my options. The transducer is a slightly odd frequency so that it doesn't interfere with other transducers, but there are some main units that use the 120 frequency.

The issue is how to set up a repeater on the flying bridge. Years ago, Coastal Navigator had a selector switch so that one chose whether the bridge or flying bridge station was used. This was back in the day when the reader was a spinning circle with a red dot that showed the depth. Primitive by today's standards, but it worked and one only had to remember to switch on the right reader. I haven't found anything comparable today.

I don't need pictures of fish, just a sounder that works reliable at over 500 feet with a simple repeater for the FB. I've found few sounders that even mention that a repeater is an option. I thought that with the popularity of trawlers repeaters would be the norm. Anybody have a simple system?
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Old 02-25-2021, 01:11 PM   #2
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I just had the flying bridge repeater for my old Cruising Equipment depth sounder serviced and now the main unit has gone dead. I haven't looked into getting it serviced and am looking around at my options. The transducer is a slightly odd frequency so that it doesn't interfere with other transducers, but there are some main units that use the 120 frequency.


I don't need pictures of fish, just a sounder that works reliable at over 500 feet with a simple repeater for the FB. I've found few sounders that even mention that a repeater is an option. I thought that with the popularity of trawlers repeaters would be the norm. Anybody have a simple system?
An Airmar or similar nmea2000 transducer connected to any display (such as your existing chartplotter, perhaps) that has N2K capability will repeat the digital transducer information.
Raymarine makes a standalone, inexpensive digital system that has a repeater too.
I'm curious. If you don't care about fish and just need a digital display, why do you need it to read depths over 500'? That requirement will start becoming an issue since it will require a higher power output and preferably a larger transducer to reach & read the bottom in deep water. Plus the price of the system will be more!
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Old 02-25-2021, 04:11 PM   #3
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You could get a couple of Hawkeye refurb depth sounders and have redundancy. I have had one for 13 years in my little Whaler and am about to upgrade to one of the newer models, very happy with the service I got from it and them.

https://hawkeyeelectronics.com/collections/recertified
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Old 02-25-2021, 04:12 PM   #4
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I just reread your post and maybe I misunderstood what you're looking for. Your existing 120 kHz unit died but you want to reuse your existing 120 kHz transducer?

If that's the case, I can't think offhand of any units currently available that use that frequency. Some high-end chirp units let you dial in a frequency but your transducer still wont work. I'd look on ebay for a display like you had or better yet, replace the whole system. You could glue a transducer in the hull if hauling was the issue.
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Old 02-25-2021, 04:14 PM   #5
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You could get a couple of Hawkeye refurb depth sounders and have redundancy. I have had one for 13 years in my little Whaler and am about to upgrade to one of the newer models, very happy with the service I got from it and them.

https://hawkeyeelectronics.com/collections/recertified
The OP said he wants to see 500'.
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Old 02-25-2021, 04:46 PM   #6
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The OP said he wants to see 500'.
Norcross claims 600' .

I agree though typically what's the point if you are not using it for fishfinding or a visual map of the bottom. It can be handy for navigation now and then when using paper charts.
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Old 02-25-2021, 08:02 PM   #7
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I don't need 500 feet. Part of that is just curiosity. It drops to 600 feet in front of my house and that's interesting. Deep readings are also nice for halibut fishing.

I have found that most sounders reliably read about half of what they claim if the boat is moving. My present sounder (when it worked) reads to 999 feet, but only with reliability to about 350 when moving in calm water.

The transducer is 120 kHz, which is not common. Si-Tex makes a reader only that uses a 120 transducer. It can send out a NMEA signal that can be used with a Navman repeater station. About $700 all in. But, like most electronics upgrades, it involves cutting new holes and running wires.

So I looked on Ebay and found a newer (still old) Datamarine Offshore sounder that fits my flush cutout. (It's not Cruising Equipment like I thought in the original post.) It goes to 1,200 feet. $100. I might get lucky and have a plug and play replacement.
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Old 02-27-2021, 02:47 PM   #8
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I think you rethink your desire to reuse the existing transducer. They do not last forever and slowly deteriorate over time. The ceramic elements wear out with use. So if you are on the hard, or expect to do so, your options increase if you look to replace both the transducer and unit. Transducers are not as hard as you might think and you can probably use the existing hole from the current transducer.

Jim
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