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PostPosted: Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:28 am 
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Location: Columbia, MD
RAM describes the transducer arm as "rigid" but also says it can be bent to suit different installations.

Can someone tell me just how bendable the arm really is? Can it be repeatedly bent to different configurations, like swapping between boats, or is that metal fatigue waiting to happen?

Also curious how rigid the RAM flex arms are if anyone knows.

I'd like to keep the arm as tight & conformed to the hull as possible, something like a 5" radius possibly.

Thanks!


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 23, 2013 11:06 am 
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With your question on it I opened the package of the one I bought a month ago.

If I knew that this thing was a kit consisting of wire loam covering over a soft alu rod of 3/8 and ends that you have to mount to the kayak and to the transducer I would have never bought it.

Yes you can bend it and yes it is rigid, figure not being able to do a tight bend but more of a sweeping bend. Figure a radius without using a vice of something you'd use your knee for. To do a tight bend use a vice and maybe something to wrap it a round like a pipe to get that radius your looking for.

At this point I'd go with something more like a alu flat bar wrapped in something even like a silicone tape. Drill holes to mount the transducer, and drill a hole for attachment to the kayak. I'd use a yak attack style mount with thumb knob screw. Bend it to shape and store it that way when not in use.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:04 pm 
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My other plan was aluminum flat bar with heatshrink tubing.

I like the idea of the RAM ball for easy up/down/swivel & the nice transducer bracket, but was curious exactly how the arm worked. It looks like a flex arm in the pics.

Another quick question...is there actually space between the "wire loom" and the aluminum tube to fit the transducer cable? All the pics I've seen have the wire zip tied to the arm, which looks kind of cheesy IMO.

Thanks!


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:53 pm 
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There is no room between the 2. You can get a larger spilt loom from the home centers, run your cable in it, zip tie it closed.

The loom is deceiving, I thought the same a flex ball and socket style makeup. I guess the rod has to be pretty solid or if got knocked the transducer would be knocked off level.

I won't get a chance till the weather warms up a bit, hopefully next week,to do the install, so I'll see how it goes. If I remember I'll do a quick review and pic or 2.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:12 am 
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Location: London UK
The ram system has a solid but bendable aluminium bar. It is is covered by a plastic tube. You can bend it once or twice but that would be it due to the aluminium hardening leading to a fracture.
So the design is for you to bend to shape once and then use the ram ball system to raise or lower it.

Works fine on my revo. No good under speed on the Ti.

Does that help?
Cc

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May the odds be ever in your favor..
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:51 am 
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Thanks Cc. That does help. The RAM product description is not very helpful.

I'm planning to switch back to a sidearm mount from the rudder mount I've been using for about a year. Last two trips I've gotten hung up on a buoy line and weeds, so want to be able to easily clear the transducer without taking a swim! This is on an i12s, so no way to mount inside the hull.

I didn't like the noise & drag from the sidearm, so this time wanted to try something that conformed closely to the hull. The pontoons have about a 5" radius.

Thanks for the replies!


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 8:30 am 
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Another option might be to make your own flex arm. You can get a plumbers spring tool that will allow you to bend copper pipe. Basically it is a long spring that you put the copper into and you can bend it like you want without kinking the copper. Just an idea.

Tight lines,
Tom


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 9:08 am 
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I have two of the Ram arms, one rigged with my DSI, the other with my Vexilar Flasher (which I like for stationary fishing sitting over perch/Bluegill schools as an example) The best way to bend the arms is to mark them with a Sharpie at the bend point. I just put mine on the Ram ball and looked down from the gunnel on my PA12 and "eyeballed" the clearance.

Then put what is to be the short end in a vice up to just short of your mark. Slip a pipe over it that has a reasonably close ID, and bend slowly. When you have a right angle, you have it. I doubt you could bend it more than a couple times without metal fatigue. I just bought a second kit so I can swap out between my PA and my PA12 and between the flasher and the DSI as I want depending on the water/species I am fishing.

A good way to have an entirely mobile unit and to have a set up that does not require through the hull and easy battery switch. Try this. Rubbermaid makes a small picnic cooler approx 6.5X9 and 7" deep. I put my battery in this in a foam cutout, marine appoxed to the bottom. Then I have a couple more foam strips on the sides. On my hatch liners, the carrying handle when folded flat gives a snug fit in the hatch. Use a hacksaw to cut a slot in the cooler under the cover just large enough to pass your wiring through. Then do the same to the hatch liner in the corner closest to where you want your wiring to pass under your mounting boards. Your hardware store will have cable clips with adhesive that have adjustable openings so you can pop your cables out and easily exchange units.

Drill a hole in your boards to pass the electrical unit up to your monitor. To make the cable easier to handle, I put it into clear flexible plastic hose that I snipped the length of with sissors so the cable slid in, then wrapped it with electrical tape. For the Vexilar puck I have a Ram ball 45 degrees front of my left knee on the right side so I can jig straight down into the beam. I have a second ball on the rail by my butt for the DSI transducer arm.

I have my Vexilar battery and wiring in one Rubbermaid cooler, my larger DSI battery and wiring in a second. By unsnapping the cable clips, I can change entire setups in less than two minutes, and change batteries in about 30 seconds. VERY easy install and makes all your units transferable and mobile.

Colorado Bob AKA Oldguysrule


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 8:10 pm 
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I recently bought this RAM mount and thought they could have put a little more effort into it. The idea that the ducer cable can't be tucked into the sleeving with the bar is a major oversight. Such a little change would make it way more polished. Home depot sells a 36" round aluminum bar that is the exact same diameter, so you might want to pick one up if you want multiple mounting options / bends for different rigs. I used mine at a local lake this weekend and there was lots of debris from rising waters. At one point while night yakking I snagged a bunch of small brush and other debris and it moved the arm / ducer backwards. I had to loosen it and remove all the debris. I guess that was better than something snapping under the pressure of the debris and force of moving in the water.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 8:24 pm 
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Location: Columbia, MD
Another quick question.

Are the single arm mount at the top & transducer mount at bottom attached to the arm with octagon buttons, or are they just friction fit with set screws?

Might want to use the single arm & ball for something custom.

Thanks!


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 10:14 pm 
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It is just a bolt with a nut on the other side that causes the plastic to tighten around the bar.


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