A Long History of Innovation

1960 - Vexilar was founded by John Uldrich and Robert Knutson under the name Vexilar Engineering. The first product was a small range-finder device for determining visual distances. The word Vexilar comes from the days of the Roman Empire. During a battle, the troops were directed to rally around a Vexilar. Like a flag on a pole, the Vexilar was much more since it also contained symbols and marking that gave instructions to the troops on the battle field.

1960 - Vexilar was founded by John Uldrich and Robert Knutson under the name Vexilar Engineering. The first product was a small range-finder device for determining visual distances. The word Vexilar comes from the days of the Roman Empire. During a battle, the troops were directed to rally around a Vexilar. Like a flag on a pole, the Vexilar was much more since it also contained symbols and marking that gave instructions to the troops on the battle field.

1965 - Vexilar developes the G-Mini, a device that measures and records impact forces. The device would eventually help NASA on their Apollo missions.

1965 - Vexilar developes the G-Mini, a device that measures and records impact forces. The device would eventually help NASA on their Apollo missions.

1968 - The Model 104 Deptherm was introduced, Vexilars first venture into the sport fishing industry, and remains in the product line for over 40 years. Along with it, they developed the first fish preference temperature chart that has now become an industry standard for over 40 years.

1968 - The Model 104 Deptherm was introduced, Vexilars first venture into the sport fishing industry, and remains in the product line for over 40 years. Along with it, they developed the first fish preference temperature chart that has now become an industry standard for over 40 years.

1969 - Now a public company, Vexilar Engineering, Inc. introduced their first sonar device, the Model 120 S.O.S (Sound Off Sonar). It is the first of its kind to offer an audible alarm when a fish or minimim depth is detected. The innovation was important enough to be featured on NBCs Today show.

1969 - Now a public company, Vexilar Engineering, Inc. introduced their first sonar device, the Model 120 S.O.S (Sound Off Sonar). It is the first of its kind to offer an audible alarm when a fish or minimim depth is detected. The innovation was important enough to be featured on NBCs Today show.

1970 - Richard E. Christman Skip joins the company as a new electronic engineer. He later becomes President until his passing in 1995.

1970 - Richard E. Christman Skip joins the company as a new electronic engineer. He later becomes President until his passing in 1995.

1970 - Vexilar introduces the first straight-line paper graph to the sport fishing industry. The model 155A changed the way fishermen expected to see the underwater world forever.

1970 - Vexilar introduces the first straight-line paper graph to the sport fishing industry. The model 155A changed the way fishermen expected to see the underwater world forever.

1971 - Vexilar introduces the Model 60 Fish Scout, an ultra-portable sonar that uses a needle readout to display depth. It\'s the first sport fishing sonar to be sold for under $100.

1971 - Vexilar introduces the Model 60 Fish Scout, an ultra-portable sonar that uses a needle readout to display depth. It\'s the first sport fishing sonar to be sold for under $100.

1973 - Vexilar introduces the model 510 paper graph. A smaller graph targeted towards walleye and bass fishermen. Later this model is updated to the 555, which became the number 1 selling paper graph of the day.

1973 - Vexilar introduces the model 510 paper graph. A smaller graph targeted towards walleye and bass fishermen. Later this model is updated to the 555, which became the number 1 selling paper graph of the day.

1975 - Vexilar introduces the Model 660, the first CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) display sonar device to the sport fishing market. This model is well accepted and is followed by the 330 and 990.

1975 - Vexilar introduces the Model 660, the first CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) display sonar device to the sport fishing market. This model is well accepted and is followed by the 330 and 990.

1975 - Vexilar took an industry leading roll that lead to the defeat of a proposed law in Minnesota to ban sonar for fishing. If passed, Minnesota would have been the only state in the USA to have such a law on their books.

1975 - Vexilar took an industry leading roll that lead to the defeat of a proposed law in Minnesota to ban sonar for fishing. If passed, Minnesota would have been the only state in the USA to have such a law on their books.

1976 - Vexilar begins working with Hondex Electronics in Japan to introduce the HE-33, the first shallow water (0-12 feet) paper graph. Also, the DE-12 is introduced. This is the fist solid state, three-color display, sonar device with no moving parts.

1976 - Vexilar begins working with Hondex Electronics in Japan to introduce the HE-33, the first shallow water (0-12 feet) paper graph. Also, the DE-12 is introduced. This is the fist solid state, three-color display, sonar device with no moving parts.

1976 - Vexilar introduces their new logo, developed by a legendary japanese designer simply called Mr. Logo as a gift from Hondex Marine of Japan. The now Classic Vexilar bird is the image of a Wilson\'s Storm Petrel, a sea bird that spends nearly its entire life far out at sea and is considered a good luck sign to sailors.

1976 - Vexilar introduces their new logo, developed by a legendary japanese designer simply called Mr. Logo as a gift from Hondex Marine of Japan. The now Classic Vexilar bird is the image of a Wilson\'s Storm Petrel, a sea bird that spends nearly its entire life far out at sea and is considered a good luck sign to sailors.

1977 - Steven E. Baumann joins the company as a Mechanical Engineer. He will later become President in 1995.

1977 - Steven E. Baumann joins the company as a Mechanical Engineer. He will later become President in 1995.

1980 - Vexilar falls victim to bankruptcy and is purchased by Dave Rush of ACR, that later became APTEK, of Hollywood, FL.

1980 - Vexilar falls victim to bankruptcy and is purchased by Dave Rush of ACR, that later became APTEK, of Hollywood, FL.

1982 - Vexilar introduces the first Liquid Crystal Display depth sounder, the model 480. This innovation would change the shape of sport fishing sonar for many years to come.

1982 - Vexilar introduces the first Liquid Crystal Display depth sounder, the model 480. This innovation would change the shape of sport fishing sonar for many years to come.

1986 - Steve Baumann (left) and Skip Christman (right) pose with a parts supplier. The two decide to buy the struggling Vexilar with high hopes of bringing the company back to its prominence in the Sport Fishing Industry.

1986 - Steve Baumann (left) and Skip Christman (right) pose with a parts supplier. The two decide to buy the struggling Vexilar with high hopes of bringing the company back to its prominence in the Sport Fishing Industry.

1987 - Vexilars Steve Baumann and Skip Christman develop the first digital fish weight scale with the help of company founder Robert Knutson. The device is marketed through the Normark Corporation as the Weigh-In Scale.

1987 - Vexilars Steve Baumann and Skip Christman develop the first digital fish weight scale with the help of company founder Robert Knutson. The device is marketed through the Normark Corporation as the Weigh-In Scale.

1989 - Vexilar re-enters the sport fishing sonar market in a big way with the help of Hondex and their proven three color flasher sonar called the FL-8. This was the first sonar system to target the ice fishing market. This introduction totally transformed the term Modern Ice Fishing with levels of effectiveness never before possible prior to the FL-8. Here at the first Ice Fishing show in Minnesota, the Owner and Executives from Hondex learn about ice fishing from Mr. Baumann, Mr. Christman and Mitch Bennis from Vexilar.

1989 - Vexilar re-enters the sport fishing sonar market in a big way with the help of Hondex and their proven three color flasher sonar called the FL-8. This was the first sonar system to target the ice fishing market. This introduction totally transformed the term Modern Ice Fishing with levels of effectiveness never before possible prior to the FL-8. Here at the first Ice Fishing show in Minnesota, the Owner and Executives from Hondex learn about ice fishing from Mr. Baumann, Mr. Christman and Mitch Bennis from Vexilar.

1991 - Vexilar enters back into the LCD market for boating applications with the Boundary Waters model LC-8, an ultra-compact depth sounder. This model would later be replaced with the LC-10 and CLC-200.

1991 - Vexilar enters back into the LCD market for boating applications with the Boundary Waters model LC-8, an ultra-compact depth sounder. This model would later be replaced with the LC-10 and CLC-200.

1995 - Vexilar\'s President, Skip Christman, passes away from a sudden heart attack. His partner, Steve Baumann, continues on as President.

1995 - Vexilar\'s President, Skip Christman, passes away from a sudden heart attack. His partner, Steve Baumann, continues on as President.

1995 - Vexilar improves on the FL-8 with the introduction of the new FL-8SLT. The use of the original model has become so popular that an interference rejection method was required so fishermen could fish close together without their depth sounders interfering with each other.

1995 - Vexilar improves on the FL-8 with the introduction of the new FL-8SLT. The use of the original model has become so popular that an interference rejection method was required so fishermen could fish close together without their depth sounders interfering with each other.

1997 - Vexilar is issued a patent fo the Ice-Ducer transducer system, a sonar transducer system designed specifically for ice fishing.

1997 - Vexilar is issued a patent fo the Ice-Ducer transducer system, a sonar transducer system designed specifically for ice fishing.

1997 - Yasaku Kamekura, the Japanese designer of the Vexilar logo, died at the age of 82.

1997 - Yasaku Kamekura, the Japanese designer of the Vexilar logo, died at the age of 82.

2000 - Vexilar enters the high-end LCD market with the Edge LC-507, a dual sonar model that offers both wide and narrow coverage at the same time. This model is later updated to the LC-507C, a color display unit.

2000 - Vexilar enters the high-end LCD market with the Edge LC-507, a dual sonar model that offers both wide and narrow coverage at the same time. This model is later updated to the LC-507C, a color display unit.

2002 - Vexilar introduced the FL-18. This is the first flasher to incorporate a split screen zoom. The popularity is overwhelming and Vexilars sales climb to all time highs.

2002 - Vexilar introduced the FL-18. This is the first flasher to incorporate a split screen zoom. The popularity is overwhelming and Vexilars sales climb to all time highs.

2003 - The FL-8SLT is improved and renamed the FL-8SE, with a brighter display and improved interference rejection. Also, the FL-10 is introduced, a new in-dash version of the three-color flasher strictly for boating.

2003 - The FL-8SLT is improved and renamed the FL-8SE, with a brighter display and improved interference rejection. Also, the FL-10 is introduced, a new in-dash version of the three-color flasher strictly for boating.

 2004 - Vexilar deputs the new AlumaDucer transducer system, the worlds first transducer designed to shoot through an aluminum boats hull. This was awarded product of the year by the National Marine Manufacturers Association.

2004 - Vexilar deputs the new AlumaDucer transducer system, the worlds first transducer designed to shoot through an aluminum boats hull. This was awarded product of the year by the National Marine Manufacturers Association.

2006 - The next generation of three-color flashers were introduced with great anticipation. The FL-12 and FL-20 joined the Vexilar product line-up with a stylish flat panel design and more built-in features. These 2 new models were a big hit with fishermen and Vexilar sales soared.

2006 - The next generation of three-color flashers were introduced with great anticipation. The FL-12 and FL-20 joined the Vexilar product line-up with a stylish flat panel design and more built-in features. These 2 new models were a big hit with fishermen and Vexilar sales soared.

2008 - Ice Fishing Today television show deputs with host Tom Zenanko, Vexilar Sale and Marketing Manager. The show offers a unique concept, supported by the website icefishingtoday.com.

2008 - Ice Fishing Today television show deputs with host Tom Zenanko, Vexilar Sale and Marketing Manager. The show offers a unique concept, supported by the website icefishingtoday.com.

2010 - Vexilar introduces their Limited Edition 50th Anniversary Ultra Pack with a FL-20. This was a limited edition offering of only five-hundred of the most advanced ice fishing systems ever created to celebrate Vexilar\'s 50th Birthday!

2010 - Vexilar introduces their Limited Edition 50th Anniversary Ultra Pack with a FL-20. This was a limited edition offering of only five-hundred of the most advanced ice fishing systems ever created to celebrate Vexilar\'s 50th Birthday!

Our Story

DepthermWe at Vexilar have a long and proud history of innovation in fishing products. Lets take a look at who we are and where we came from. Vexilar has been in the marine business since 1960. We have always been a small company with good hard working employees. Our goal has simply been to offer the sportsman innovative and quality products at affordable prices.

Our first product was a small clear tube that, when lowered under the surface of the water, gave the depth that it was lowered to. It also gave the temperature of the water at that depth. The product was the model 104 Deptherm and it is still in our product line today, over 50+ years later.

120 S.O.S.

In the years that followed Vexilar introduced many “firsts” for the sport fishing market. In the late 1960′s, when neon flashers were the latest in fishing electronics, Vexilar introduced the model 120 S.O.S. This was the first unit to provide an audible alarm. No longer did the fisherman need to look at the screen to see if he was running into shallower water or if he was going over fish. Now, an alarm would sound to let you know.

Fishing Paper Graphs

Vexilar was also very popular in the sport fishing paper graphs. In the late sixties and early seventies we had some of the best units on the market, including the models 155 and 555. Many of these are still in use today. And we still provide paper, parts, and service for them.

In 1981 we introduced the first Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) depth finder with the model 480. This unit was the first in the LCD graph market that we see today. It had 128 x 64 resolution and a very good sonar behind it. The models 481 and 482 followed with the additions of on-screen speed and temp as well as dual frequency transmitters.

LGR

Then came the flood of LCRs and LCGs from the competition that spelled trouble for us. As a small company we could not compete with the “big guys”. Ironically, the technology that we introduced brought us to the brink of extinction. That is when our current president and his partner stepped in and took over. No, Skip Christman and Steve Baumann were not industry heavy hitters. They were Vexilar employees who knew what the company could yet offer.

Scales

Not long after came the first LCD display Digital Fish Scale. Known throughout North America as the Normark Weigh-In Scale, this type of scale made it easy to accurately weigh smaller fish, such as pan fish. Catch and Release also became much easier to do now that you could get a photo of the fish with its weight on the scale.

FL-8

In 1989 Vexilar got back into the depth finder market with the reintroduction of the FL-8 color flasher. This unit had been sold under several names in the past and was popular with some serious fisherman, especially with ice fisherman. We surrounded it with important accessories such as small high quality rechargeable battery and charger, a battery status Indicator, and a unique carrying case. These parts made it easy to use the FL-8 for ice fishing. More and more people were now showing up on the lakes with a Vexilar.

Then came the LC-8, a high quality compact LCD graph, followed by LPS-1, a hand held digital depth finder used from above or below the surface of the water. These were Vexilar’s first attempt at re-entering the LCD market for open water fishing. The LC-8 packed big performance in a small package, and the LPS-1 brought ultra portable depth reading capability to even lightest traveling of anglers.

With the popularity of Vexilar FL-8 flashers increasing each year, a real problem started to develop in that there were so many Vexilar flashers used for ice fishing that cross-talk interference became a major issue. This is a condition in which one sonar unit receives signal from another nearby unit. It causes erratic flashing and circular strobing on the display of both sonar units. So in response, the FL-8SLT was introduced in 1995. The SLT stood for SiLenT. This was the first sonar to include a true interference rejection system. This was a revolutionary interference canceling circuit which effectively knocked out the problematic signals in both units, even if one of the two was an older FL-8 without the new IR feature.

Transducer

In conjunction with the FL-8SLT, Vexilar introduced a revolutionary ice fishing transducer. The Ice-Ducer was specially designed for the sport to free the angler from the clumsy adjustable arm mechanisms so common of the day. The Ice-Ducer worked off a simple plumb-bob effect to maintain a near perfect vertical position (required to “see” ones bait while fishing) all the time. However, achieving this design was more difficult than one might think. The challenges of cold weather performance and durability were difficult to overcome. But the Ice-Ducer forever changed the way ice fishing transducers were constructed and have been standard equipment ever since.

Shortly after, Vexilar improved upon the LC-8 with the introduction of the LC-10. This unit utilized the very low power requirements of the LC-8 by coupling a simplified control set with a very compact portable carrying case. Dubbed the Boundary Waters edition, it became popular for serious “expedition anglers” whom had great concern for size and weight. The Boundary Waters system weighed less than 2-1/2 pounds and ran for 60 hours in one set of AA batteries.

Edge 2

Also added to the selection of LCD graph units for the open water was the first ever dual frequency AND dual transducer sonar on the market. The Edge2 amazed even the most demanding anglers with it’s ability to locate and pinpoint structure points and fish. By allowing the user to directly compare a very wide transducer cone and a very narrow one on the screen at the same time, it became possible to position the fishing boat much more precisely, and thus increase fishing success considerably. The Edge3 is the latest revision of this amazing unit that you simply must see for yourself.

FL-18

Advancements in flasher sonar technology developed by Vexilar in 2001 was the foundation for the times most advanced three-color flasher/fish finder in the world, the FL-18. This breakthrough product delivered target ID of under 1/2 inch, and was the worlds first split-screen zoom flasher sonar. This advancement increased Vexilars dominance among winter fishermen who love using sonar for ice fishing. With a faster, much brighter display and an enhanced interference rejection system, the FL-18 instantly became the “Cadillac” of ice fishing sonar systems.

Vexilar also pioneered the concept of pre-packed systems for the winter angler and developed what is called the “Pack” systems that consists of a self contained 12 volt battery, and Vexilars Patented Ice-Ducer transducer in a handy carrying case for ice fishermen. Vexilar offered a number of different pack styles to meet the needs and budgets of all types of fishermen. From a basic entry level pack, to a full system for the pros with all the bells and whistles, Vexilar continues to offer a range of systems.

FL-8SE

In 2002 the FL-8SLT was upgraded to the FL-8SE (Special Edition). This unit brought the enhanced display and interference rejection to Vexilar best selling product, yet maintaining the more affordable price. This unit remains a popular choice for entry level ice fishing enthusiasts and hard core tournament anglers alike.

AlumaDucer and acoustically conductive epoxy

In 2004, Vexilar moved to our new manufacturing and warehouse facility, doubling our size, to handle the ever increasing need for Vexilar products. Again, we were the pioneer in sonar technology with the creation of the AlumaDucer. A Patented design for 200 kHz transducers to shoot through aluminum hulls. This totally unique transducer used with the special blend of acoustically conductive epoxy will help us to continue to lead the marine industry with innovation.

In 2006 Vexilar released the Edge3. This unit brought a full color display and a much improved feature set to the popular Edge2. Pinpointing structure and fish targets became even easier.

FL-18 and FL-20

2006 saw theintroduction of theFL-12 and the FL-20. With the advancements in LED technology, it has finally become possible to redesign the flasher’s casing and eliminate the built-in sun shield that was required for so long. The new flat screen casing sports a larger size display and brighter LEDs than ever before. Freed from the narrow viewing angle of the classic series FL units, the FL-12 and FL-20 allows visibility from wide angles and further distances, making it even more of a joy to use both on the ice and in the boat.

In 2009, Vexilar shocked the sonar world by developing the world’s first transducer with three beam angles from onetransducer. It iscalled the Tri-Beam Ice-Ducer and offers an 8degree, 12 degree anda 20 degree viewing cone angle option with the simple flip of a switch. Vexilar has always had the widest selection of transducer options for anglers to maximize their performance and with the Tri-Beam , theangler has much more flexiblity to fish shallow or deep with just one transducer to do it all. All Vexilar transducers are totally interchangeablewith older units, so anglers can upgrade at any time.

2010 saw the introduction of the FL22 HD, the world’s first winter flasher system designed specificallyfor shallow water use and offering a high defination flat screen display that enhanced an already high resolution display to something many would have never thought possiblefrom a sonar system.

2010 also sawVexilarintroducingtheir first line of underwater camera systems called the Fish Scout.For the first time underwater camera users were able to fish for nearly 10 hours on a single battery charge with this color/black and white camera system. To complement the sonar/camera technology in 2011 Vexilar introduced the Double Vision sonar/camera systemsinto one easy to carry system. Now anglers were able to easily and quickly shift from camera to sonar modeor use both at the same time.

Vexilar’s now President, Steve Baumann, has made freshwater fishing history by being inducted into both the Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame and the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame.

Innovative, quality, and affordable products. A tradition started almost a half of a century ago still holds true today. It is easy to see why many owner’s of Vexilar products would not go fishing without their Vexilar.