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Went 2 for 3 out of Port Sheldon last night. Really slow night. Fished south from 120 to 75 fow with the best fishing being in 85 fow. Missed a big steelie in 88 fow on a 250 copper with mag NBK spoon. Picked up a 22 lb. king in 85 fow just after sunset on 150 copper with a mag jaggerbomb. Well after dark just south of holland we got a 15 lb steelhead 30 down on a rigger to end the night. Marked a ton of bait 20 down and lots of fish 30 down from 75 to 85 fow.

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Curious how you are picking up and determine baitfish 20ft down on your electronics?

I am still learning my Lowrance HDS10 so maybe I just need to learn how to fine tune it. When trolling in 70-200 fow the scale to cover top to bottom basically leaves the top 20ft looking like noise. Any help appreciated!

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Curious how you are picking up and determine baitfish 20ft down on your electronics?

I am still learning my Lowrance HDS10 so maybe I just need to learn how to fine tune it. When trolling in 70-200 fow the scale to cover top to bottom basically leaves the top 20ft looking like noise. Any help appreciated!

Sounds like you are getting turbulence around your transducer which is reading as noise in the top 20'. I'd check where you have the transducer mounted to make sure it is getting clear water coming across it. Make sure it is about 1/8" below the edge of the hull and the rear should be tilted down a little for best results. Ideally the hull should be smooth in front of the transducer -- if it is behind a strake or rivets this can cause air bubbles or turbulent water that will cause the noise.

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You may also need to turn down the gain on your fishfinder as this can cause lots of noise near the surface, even with a properly mounted transducer.

I always use the manual gain setting on my sonar. Easiest way to get it set correctly is to set the max depth range to a little over about two times the current depth (250 if in 100 FOW) and then increase the gain until you start seeing a second bottom reading at two times the actual depth (both 100 and 200 in this example). That should be enough power to see rigger weights and both bait and game fish on the graph. As you go deeper you may need to increase the gain to get good readings. After a few times you will start to get a feel for how high the gain needs to be. I have Raymarine electronics so I can't speak to the HDS10 specifically, but this has worked well on all of the sonar units of various manufactures I have had over the last 20 years.

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Thanks again Ryan, very good advice. I checked the transducer this morning and it is hanging below the hull a little too much, like 1/2". There are slots in the bracket to allow moving it up to 1/8" as you suggested. Easy thing to try and play with the gain. The location related to strakes isn't great and not a lot of good options so I will try the easy stuff first and try to improve the baseline before drilling more holes :D

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