North Wales Kayak Fishing

Fitting a Garmin 100 Despite having enjoyed a full spec'd Humminbird in my past life I thought that this would do the job got me and so took the plunge. I thought the fitting would be obvious and easy since the Min-X has a superb centre console and excellent access from its huge centre hatch. However, on second thought there were other considerations that I am sure some of you may have not thought about. These were:
1. At what distance from me should I place it - on capsize would i belt it 100yds with my left foot - I always seem to capsize to the right....
2. Should I bolt, rivet or bungee?
3. When the unit is removed can I still safely paddle without ripping my kegs on the bracket on re-entry?
4. Where and how should I stow the battery? Technology has moved on but batteries for fish finders have not - they are still breezeblocks in disguise5. Do I wish to turn my Mini-X into a Mini-Sub with too many holes if the fit does not work out or I later change the model?
6. Do I wish it to swivel whilst I ride side-saddle? Nope!

One issue seemed to lead to another but the result I think is neat, functional and flexible.

My first concern was easy. Sit in the boat and see where my 40inch svelte-like figure would allow me to reach I noted the position and got down to design the mount of the Garmin.

 

I mounted the Garmin base on a piece of yellow polyethylene to match the boat. And is about 6mm thick.

 

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The front edge of this would clip under an alloy lip formed from a piece of aluminium strip from B&Q screwed through a narrow piece of cutting board. The back would then be bolted by a single bolt with knob-head (if you pardon the technical term..) through to a captive plate beneath the deck. This was made from a piece of s/s plate about 1x 2 inches riveted from above. The bolt hole was then enlarged and run to the edge of the base plate to enable it to be slipped under the knob before being let back under the front clip and fastened into place

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The beauty of this system is that all sorts of other attachments could be used in lieu such as gps, camera holder, bait box .

Once in place the location of the through deck glands could be judged for the Garmin twin cable. These were suggested elsewhere on the forum and in case you cannot 'find' them yourself they are available in white or black from B&Q for 73p each (look in conduit section)

The Garmin wetproof plugs are just too large to slip through the gland and so the knurled outer needs paring back by a mm or so. Once in place the next step was the battery.

Batteries are standard sizes...brick, half-brick and thermolite block. I chose a 4.2Ah version which is almost a cube in shape. This was the same weight as a 2.8 or 3.2Ah so I thought i may as well get the advantage of the extra life between charges. Finding a suitable container was the next big issue.
Options were many...waterproof bag, aluminium case, specialised plastic boxes from Peli - great for camera gear but over engineered for a brick. By looking around I came across the ideal solution. Addis has a new range of air and water-tight boxes with easy clip on lids called 'Komax' the one litre version fits the 4.2Ah battery perfectly with a 1cm gap all round for foam filling. By adding a gland to this on one side the battery box was completed.

 

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Now, where to put it. tether it to the scuppers or jam it up with swimming noodles! A more appropriate solution was necessary. Access did not have to be direct as I was to fit a waterproof connector to the power cable. By ensuring the 2A fuse was placed in the box with the battery I could then have a mating plug on the charger and simply disconnect in situ to recharge

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The Mini-X tunnel is also huge underneath where the space is wasted. I decided to sling the battery box under there by making a simple aluminium cage to house it and riveting the cage through the side walls of the tunnel.

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The cage was built from two strips of 15mm by 2mm aluminium strip from B&Q formed into three 'u' shapes and riveted together. The width was judged to fit the tunnel and and the length to match the box. The box simply fits inside and is secured with a tight bungee. The cable exits from either the front or rear to the Garmin unit.

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The transducer is simply fitted to the hull using one or other of the various permanent or temporary measures listed here and elsewhere and the job is complete.