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Jan 23rd, 2013
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Ultrex spot-lock snafu... #13571511 05/26/20 01:07 PM
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~Moose~ Online Content OP
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Was fishing around bridge pylons Saturday in windy conditions using spot-lock. Went to put a fish in the livewell and when I turned around the Ultrex had the front of the boat swinging really fast towards a pylon. Barely got up there in time to stop the boat from smashing into it. Seemed very random. Anyone else had spot-lock get confused?

Re: Ultrex spot-lock snafu... [Re: ~Moose~] #13571557 05/26/20 01:34 PM
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Burbarry Offline
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were you under the bridge when you set the spot lock? maybe it wasn't getting a good line of sight with Satellites.

Re: Ultrex spot-lock snafu... [Re: ~Moose~] #13571568 05/26/20 01:45 PM
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Fishin' Nut Online Content
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The sensitivity on my remote is too high. There are times when I'm spot locked and I'll bump the remote and lose it. I need to quit storing it in my vest pocket.


Silence like a cancer grows
Re: Ultrex spot-lock snafu... [Re: Fishin' Nut] #13571798 05/26/20 05:20 PM
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~Moose~ Online Content OP
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Originally Posted by Burbarry
were you under the bridge when you set the spot lock? maybe it wasn't getting a good line of sight with Satellites.


I was thinking about that being a possible issue. Even if I wasn't directly under it at that time, I was fishing the pylons so I had to be nearly under it. It was just strange because it only did it that one time out of I dont know how many spot-locks throughout the day in and around the pylons.

Originally Posted by Fishin' Nut
The sensitivity on my remote is too high. There are times when I'm spot locked and I'll bump the remote and lose it. I need to quit storing it in my vest pocket.


I havent even touched the remote yet. It is in the passenger console in a ziploc bag. I need to get it out and start learning it.

Re: Ultrex spot-lock snafu... [Re: ~Moose~] #13571869 05/26/20 06:17 PM
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remote is the only way to go,...and learn how to use "jog"... fish

Re: Ultrex spot-lock snafu... [Re: ~Moose~] #13571988 05/26/20 08:04 PM
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Capt Craig Offline
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Spot-lock has a number of variables that effect it's ability as they list in their manual along with notices and warnings. “NOTICE: It is very important that the controller have a clear view of the sky in all directions and has a clear line of sight to the remote for optimum performance.”

1. Rate of motor thrust to boat weight - Excessive thrust on a smaller boat can cause i-Pilot to over correct. Not enough thrust on a large boat can cause i-Pilot to respond slowly.

2. Wind - Excessive wind and/or current can reduce i-Pilot’s positioning accuracy.

3. GPS signal strength - The greater the number of GPS signal bars the greater the accuracy.

4. Trolling motor battery power level - A fully charged battery will give the best performance.

These variables are significant to the accuracy issue and to how closely a boat may stay at the location where the spot-lock was initiated and any degree of movement involved in doing so.

The trolling motor uses a GPS receiver in the head of the unit that is similar to the GPS receiver in the Humminbird unit. The trolling motor is not capable of displaying a GPS Diagnostics screen. At the top of the remote are 4 bars that indicate GPS strength. The trolling motor must have at least one bar to obtain a GPS fix and the most accurate fix would be with all four bars. The Humminbird is capable of displaying a GPS Diagnostic screen. This screen shows which satellites the Humminbird is actively using and which are only being monitored. It also shows the signal strengths of individual satellites. Along with this data are variables which effect the unit’s accuracy such as Horizontal Dilution of Precision (HDOP), Average Carrier-to-Noise ratio (CNO), and Top 4. How, where, and whether an external GPS antenna is used also effect GPS accuracy. Each of these variables factor in to determine how accurately the unit is measuring to create an Estimated Position Error (EPE).

Because of the variables, especially around objects that may block satellite signals, anglers should be very cautious about using spot-lock near structure.


Capt. Craig Copeland
Licensed by the US Coast Guard

2019 Nautic Star 215 XTS Shallow Bay Boat
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