Thread: Hawkeye Depth Gauge Install
08-30-2009, 09:20 PM #1
I went with the Hawkeye D11S (about $80 on eBay) because it was cheap and waterproof. Just in case, I
sealed up the back of the display unit with silicone since I didn't trust the flimsy O-ring that was installed from
Bought it from "norcrossmarine" on eBay - very fast shipping and as you can see, the unit works great.
Sounder Module Mounting
Probably the most critical part of the whole install so this is where I will start.
As we should all know, depthfinders use sonar to measure water depth. Any air that is trapped between the
sonar module and the river/lake/ocean bottom will affect your results!
That being said, there are two important things to keep in mind while mounting the module:
1. Find a spot where the hull is single-layer and also pretty flat.
2. Use a good slow-cure epoxy to glue the module in.
Unfortunately, as I found out halfway through the install, the FZ skis have a double-layer hull from front to
back... There is no single-layer area anywhere!! Your luck will probably depend on how much glue the boys
at Yamaha Inc decided to put between the two sections. Try to use one of the areas towards the back of the
ski where there is no foam or open air pockets between the two layers.
The first picture shows where I mounted my module - this location worked for me, but it may not work for you!
I used Marine-Tex Flex-Set epoxy to glue my module in. It's a bit pricey, but it has a very long set time which
(presumably) allows all the air bubbles to escape. Again, this is what worked for me.
Mounting the rest of the stuff
This is the easy part - as the pictures show, I mounted the electronics module above and in front of the
engine as I suspect it may not be entirely waterproof. This area should hopefully stay pretty dry. The actual
display unit is just stuck in the front with double-sided tape for now - I'll probably reposition it later, but this
was sufficient for testing. Everything is wired directly to the battery - this model has an auto-off feature that
turns the unit off after 5 mins of "---" readings (shallow water, or out of the water) which seems to keep my
battery from draining overnight.
In very shallow water (2-3 feet) I was able to verify the readings by jumping off and touching the bottom.
In some deeper water, I checked against nautical charts, and the unit was within 1-2 feet of the published depth.
Once on plane, the depth seems to read about 10% higher, probably due to the angle of the boat in the water.
In flat water, I was able to hold a consistent bottom reading up to my top speed of ~70 mph. Once I entered the
pump wash of another ski, the readings became much less consistent, and anytime my ski completely left the water,
the unit would read "---" for a few seconds.
All-in-all, this is more than I expected out of a cheap eBay unit, so I'm quite satisfied.
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