Fish Finder mount issue

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  #1  
Old 06-22-10, 03:04 PM
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Fish Finder mount issue

I need some help.

I just recently bought a used Sea Ray 195 that used to have a fish finder installed on it. The old head unit was removed and the holes where it was mounted were "covered" by threading bolts through with grommets to make the hole pattern look less painful to the eye.

The mount point is the most convenient (but still not great) spot on the drivers dash. If I could mount the finder somewhere else, I would.

Here's the problem...I bought a new finder, and the base is not as large as the old one, and the mount points don't quite match the existing holes. I'm thinking of "solving" the problem by using 3 of the existing holes, then elongating the 4th so I can get the bolts through, using washers to bot against (since the holes will now be too big for the bolts to do the trick). Then, to cover the cosmetic problems this process will cause, I'm planning on cutting a black mouse pad to be slightly larger than the base of the finder mount I have and using that as a black "rubberized" base (the finder is black). This hopefully will cover the cosmetic mess, and helps secure the finder as the mounting area isn't flat currently, making tightening down the hard plastic mount that much harder.

In any event, I thought I'd ask opinions before continuing.

The other options I can think of are:

1) replace the screws and mount the finder at a more sub-optimal spot.

2) take the boat into a marina and spend untold amounts to have the old holes properly filled, re-fiberglassed, and gel coated, then drill new holes as required.
 
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Old 06-22-10, 03:49 PM
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Talking This is a dream job for a tinkerer!

You have many options.
One is if the holes are close to the new finder's you could enlarge all the holes in increments of a drill bit size.
If the holes are close you would find that they will eventually line up.
The deciding factor for this is the actual spacing difference.

Another way is rather than use a mouse pad go to a plastics fabricator and get a piece of some type of complementary color and type of plastic as a new base.

How about wood?
Get a piece of solid oak and have it planed to 3/8" thickness then router the edges, apply a clear weatherproof finish and mount the finder.

There are likely more things you can do.
If you have some pictures you can post them on a free site like PhotoBucket and provide a link.
 
  #3  
Old 06-22-10, 03:58 PM
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Thanks for the reply.

I thought of the wood or plastic mount piece as well, the only issue though is connecting it to the dash. I'd need to glue it since the new mount holes are close enough to the old holes that I can't just bolt it in place. Otherwise, an excellent idea.

I'll take photo's tomorrow and post them....it's raining tonight, so no good.
 
  #4  
Old 06-22-10, 04:18 PM
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You don't need to worry about the holes.
The first thing a budding diy'er needs to do is get over making new holes and then when you do it and enjoy it, you can then graduate as a confirmed diy'er!
 
  #5  
Old 06-22-10, 06:53 PM
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True...actually, I'm pretty good at fearlessly drilling holes, although drilling into fiberglass and gel coat has me freaking out a bit since a bad drilled hole isn't easy to fix.

Okay, I cut the mouse pad and fit it, and it looks like it should work and actually looks the part. Pics attached. The fuzzy one is supposed to show how the holes, without the mouse pad, are slightly past the mounting base.

Wish me luck, tomorrow new holes get drilled.

IMG_2650.jpg picture by hauger2 - Photobucket

IMG_2651.jpg picture by hauger2 - Photobucket

IMG_2652.jpg picture by hauger2 - Photobucket

IMG_2653.jpg picture by hauger2 - Photobucket

 
  #6  
Old 06-22-10, 09:23 PM
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That looks better than I was expecting.

When you drill through gel into fiberglass use the bit in reverse until your through the gel then go forward. You will be less likely to chip the gel. And make sure you champfer the holes so the screws won't touch the gel that way you don't have to worry about cracks in the future.
 
  #7  
Old 06-23-10, 08:46 PM
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Well, I'm here to post the post-install report. I'm happy to say my mouse-pad modification worked as promised and it seems at least for now to look good and is doing the job. I managed to get the transponder on and everything wired (directly to the battery with an inline fuse). Right now, it's just a matter of letting the 3M 5200 set, then float the boat again and see if the transponder properly transponds.

Thanks for letting me talk the process through.
 
  #8  
Old 06-24-10, 04:12 AM
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If the transponder wasn't already installed, be sure to install it where it won't get caught in your cavitation wake. If improperly placed it will actually stop reading when you go wao with the throttle until water gets back under it. Good job on the remounting. But you're using it for a depth finder, not a fish finder. Using it for a fish finder I would have mounted it on the bow just next to my fishing seat.....but that's another day. Have fun!
 
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