In todays realm of high tech, high price marine electronics, one can easily get entangled in all the hype about machines that promise everything including the kitchen sink...but fall short of good ol' common sense and being able to "read" bottom and understand / interpret what they are looking at on the screen. In our day and age of "Chirp" sonars and 3G & 4G products, I Pads, I Phone compatibility, etc, etc...its the fisherman themselves who are now the prey and not the predator. Holy chit...like moths to the flame, we fish hard and do everything to get the edge over the other guys in the fleet...then fork over our hard earned cash to the overpriced electronic companies and fall prey who those who try to make us think we "must have" their latest overpriced equipment to catch fish...something we, as professional fisherman, have done long before Loran "A" was in the wheelhouse of any boats dating back to the 1950's...
In the above pics, are some marine relics I recently purchased on "Fleabay" for very short money....a Sitex Fish Plot 10 GPS, a Sitex CVS 211 bottom scope and a more recent machine that is a "must have" for anyone who is a wreckhunter like myself...the Furuno GP-33. Let me explain a bit further....the Sitex machines are considered "outdated" by most in the fleet, however, let me just say this...the older Sitex GPS units, with the C Map NT + bathymetric chips show more bottom detail with clarity and insight (mussle beds, rocks, soft gravel, spot depths, etc.,) than anything on the market today...and one of the reasons I know where the Cod are...year round...more than most other guys in the fleet. The old school Sitex CVS 211 is a bottom machine like no other, 20 year old technology, a relic without question...however...that old CRT screen, when coupled with two seperate, 1kw, 50/200 hz ducers, can pinpoint 3" baitfish at 150' below the boat...in such great detail. Its the only machine I have used in the past to successfully see Fluke coming off deep bottom to inhale squid, bergalls, scup and even small blues. Our nickname for this machine back in the day was "Death From Above"...couldn't belive I found one online for less than $100...and I cannot wait to use it this upcoming season!!!
Furuno GP33...maybe not a "relic", but it sure is one of the best machines for hunting down those old favorites fishing hotspots from the past. When dialed in correctly, the GP 33 can take your old school Loran TD's (numbers) from the past (prior to Nobama shutting down the towers) and format them as relevant GPS positions to reconnect to those old hotspots...and within 300 feet from what I am told by professionals at Furuno. But the key is in the set-up of the machine....something that is not easy and takes time to do correctly. Regardless, for approximately $500...you get the disply, antenna, wiring, manual, etc., a great deal for a machine that can really save the day when the fishing is slow....a real gem and a necessity on every charter boat in my humble opinion.
Well....as we head into the last week in February, keep your chin-up and don't stop thinking about the great season that is upon us.....another great year to enjoy out on the water...away from it all....what better place is there to be?