I had the installed the Raymarine Dragonfly on the Big Rig HD/FD but then I decided to change out the Dragonfly for the new Raymarine Element. The concept of the addition of sidevision and 3D vision had me interested in the application of these new tools for both freshwater and saltwater fishing. So I will describe the process for removing the current system and installing the Element fish finder.
The first step is to remove the cable tubing clamps that are riveted in place that secures the transducer/power wire harness. I used a drill bit that is roughly the same diameter as the setting mandrel (rivet pin) so that the rivet can be removed from the kayak. While doing this you need to be careful as not to create a rivet hole that is bigger than the rivet body. I did manage to have one of the rivet holes resulted in a large hole. This is an easy fix. I keep bits of plastic that I have collected over the years when I’m drilling or cutting into the kayak. So using a soldering iron and pieces of plastic I managed to refill this larger hole. Once the welded plastic area has cooled I can drill a hole that the rivet will fit snug when running the transducer cable through 1/2 inch cable tubing clamps.
I used the same installation of using a bungee cord and a circular piece of plastic cut from an inexpensive cutting board. I run the bungee cord through the bolt hole of the transducer, running the cord through the transducer scupper hole and the plastic disc, and securing the transducer with a square knot to keep the transducer location of the kayak. I noticed that the transducer for the Element did not fit as nicely as the Dragonfly transducer. To correct this I used some marine goop to secure the transducer and let set for 12 hours.
Since the Element has two wire harnesses; one for the transducer and another for the battery connection I had to opt to drill two more additional holes from the initial Dragonfly setup; one hole to run the power cable to where I will be storing the Nocqua battery and the other hole just opposite of the initial hoe for the transducer harness which exited over the rod trough. Another issue with the power cable is a short tail that connects to the motor instrumentation to display this information to the Raymarine unit. So to protect that connection I used one of those Nocqua cap ends to prevent saltwater corrosion.
The placement of the Raymarine Element 7 on the Big Rig FD is more critical then I had envisioned. I originally decided to use the gunnel gear track. When on the water noticed that while pedaling that the monitor starting cutting slightly into my water shoes. This is when I decided that I would take Matt Ball’s suggestion of using the threaded inserts near the handle. This results in moving the monitor a few inches away so that my shoes would not brush against the corner of the fish finder.
The end result is that I’m very happy with the Raymarine Element functionality. The sidevision is great and it might even help when fishing for sheepshead when targeting them near the pilings. Another function that I love about the Element is that when in the mapping routine the time is displayed from the satellites. The best thing is the icon for the map can be a paddling kayak instead of a motor boat. If you are interested in installing or changing out to the Raymarine Element I would highly recommend that fish finder for your kayak.