This hopefully sheds some light on one way to do an installation of a Garmin striker 4 dv and most other Sounders for Kayaks. I wanted to externally mount the transducer, but at this stage I still have not found a suitable method that does not come with issues in doing so.
I don’t recommend drilling into hull. Using Velcro is also in my opinion not a suitable option. Unless shape and design of the transducer allows for flush adhesion onto velcro (cord coming out front of transducer). All external transducer mounting has some drag. Albeit not that noticeable for some.
So, I decided to do a shoot-through hull installation. Happy to trade off a slightly off temperature reading (usually no more than 1 deg), and tiny bit of clarity with down view (if any) for a hassle-free installation.
- Hack saw
- 2-part epoxy
- marine silicone
- electrical cradles
- dremmel tool
- Soldering iron
- sand paper
- terminal lugs
- 4-inch inspection hatch
- Acetone and cloth
- 1 x Drainage bung
Extra 1m electrical cord (for making the unit’s power cord a bit longer; preferably same diameter as units power cord) Reason being is if the cord terminals starts corroding you can cut back the cord until fresh cord and re-lug. I designed a custom flush mount with ZZ tops (what most use currently) to help protect the unit and its cables. I recommend Contact ZZ Tops canopies in Strand and customizing your lid the same (see 1st pic on pg11) Make sure they know what unit you are wanting to fit as the size of cut out out varies. Or… use the bracket supplied with finder .
The pic’s below give you an idea of where you heading so far. (That’s after the transducer has been siliconed into the hull of course, which we will get to shortly) Using a Garmin Striker, you take the front end of the transducers connector from the transducer, through a widened screw hole as seen in pic 2 (So no Need for the additional small cutout as in pic1)… However, if your front end of your transducer unit connector is bigger like on some Lowrance units, then to stick to the first fitment bung style (pic1).
Ok, once you have decided which install you are wanting to do. Take the lid off the inspection hatch and use it to draw a circle for the cutout. Cut hole using a Dremel tool or something suitable. NB!! Make sure you don’t put this inspection hatch too close to the bottom of the fish box curve, leave a gap above the curve enough so the whole thing will sit flush against the side of fish box when fitted. NB!! Also make sure you don’t cut into the foot well section, you can see my circle is away from the footwell.
cut a smaller hole for the bung plug (use coin for circle) only if you need to, as explained earlier.
In order have the transducer cord coming out of the bung installation, you need to do the following. Use a soldering iron to make a hole through the bung for the transducer cord (to later seat into) Make the hole close as possible to the same diameter as the transducer cable.
Use a hacksaw to slice the bung cap so it opens up just enough to twist and push the transducer cable into the newly soldered hole.
This pic below is what you are trying to achieve by making soldering hole for the transducer cable. Now push the washer back onto the bung cap once the cord is in (as shown below).
Ok, now for the transducer installation Sand the underneath of the transducer with sandpaper lightly to help prevent silicone from separating from the transducer. NB!! Clean any dust off all the surfaces coming into contact with one another with acetone or similar before administering silicone.
Push the transducer flat onto a flat section of inside hull, making sure there are no bubbles between the transducer and the hull. Try do it in one motion ending in squishing down till you believe most of the silicone has escaped from the underside/bottom surface of the transducer. Now leave it alone, don’t touch it again for at least 8 hours! Excess transducer cord stays behind inside the same chamber once the transducer has been siliconed into position. Only the transducer connector and enough cord will be coming back through the small bung hole (or other widened inspection hatch screw hole) to reach the unit
Silicone the inspection hatch (and bung if u did the bung installation not the widened screw hole one) onto fiberglass as shown above. Use cut pool noodle pieces to help seat everything as flush as possible for duration of the drying time. Make sure you have enough transducer cord coming out the bung to connect it to your fish finder unit (The rest just stays in the hull, can ziptie if want too) You should be left with everything looking similar to above. Once silicone has dried, you should be able to push and pull the transducer cord to the desired length before siliconing around any gaps where the cord comes out the bung. Only if you feel it necessary to do so. That’s it for the transducer installation!
Next is extending and securing the power and transducer cord onto the inside of the ski lining. Take the electrical cord that you bought and extend the unit’s power cord using “Extend a Cord” as in the pic below. If you try and join the cords using something else just be aware you likely to have endless problems with power if the join is not 100% waterproof.
pic below shows the two cords joined using extend o cord. 100% waterproof.
This is what the power cable should look like once you have extended it, using the Extend-o-Cord.
To secure the cord to the inside of the ski use these electrical cradles. Make sure you use epoxy or similar to glue them on with. Reason being, the sticky tape that is on them already does not hold for long. Scrape them down to a flat surface as in the pic.
Before gluing these cradles to the inside of the kayak, sand the surface where they will be glued onto. Making sure they hold once glued. (make sure you don’t get glue in the gaps where zipties will be threaded through)
Once the cradles are glued, zip-tie the power and transducer cords onto the cradles.
NB! Reason I extend the power cord is so that if you need to cut away any corroded line and crimp on fresh lugs, you now won’t run out of power cord too quickly. (having extended the unit’s power cord)
I suggest you put the battery into a padded container such as a small 6 pack cooler bag with some of the excess cord and shove it under the seat out of the way. If you have a flush mount lid and already secured your unit into it, it should look similar to this. If you’ re using the same unit between two skis or boat as well, then using a flush mount kit would be better. Otherwise marine silicone unit into lid, like I did in this install. If your cords tend pull out of the unit, make plan to secure them so they don’t. Else you will need to call us and replace the power cord which is supporting us, but an unnecessarily waste of money.