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How To

Installing an In-Hull Depth Sounder
By Bill Newman

Cutting new holes in my hull makes me nervous. That's why I like in-hull depth depth sounders with the transducer mounted on the inside. I have installed two over the years and, properly mounted in some 3 inch plastic tubing filled with mineral oil, they can provide years of reliable service. Here are the simple steps:

  1. Buy a foot or so of 3" ABS or PVC plastic tubing and a cap to seal one end
  2. Cut a hole in the centre of the cap big enough to insert the transducer - typically 2".
  3. Find an appropriate place to mount - usually under one of the salon settees, just aft of the bulkhead for either the head or the hanging locker.
  4. Angle-cut the bottom end of the tube to fit the contour of the hull.
  5. Trim the top of the tube to provide enough room for the transducer and still fit under the settee.
  6. Lightly sand the hull where you are going to locate the tube and clean with acetone
  7. Fit the bottom piece of pipe with a generous amount of regular epoxy, not the 5 minute variety.
  8. Leave it for a couple of days before putting in the mineral oil.
  9. Mount the transducer in the cap and insert into the tube. No need to glue the cap as it is a snug fit and you may need to occasionally remove to top up the mineral oil.
The oil amount is more or less trial and error when you insert the cap and transducer. Ideally the oil with the transducer should be just below the top of the cap. If a little overflows it is not a problem.

This type of installation works well and does not compromise the integrity of the hull. Good luck!