I‘m a liberal leaning outdoorsman attempting to open the minds of right wingers to the idea that libs fish too. Anglers come from all walks of life, left, right, and center. Not everyone who fishes for bass is a redneck fond of Nascar, country music, and religiosity. Expect posts about largemouth bass fishing, techniques, reviews of lures and other products, but not any condemnable conservative rants. I hope to inspire the online angler community to dial down rhetoric which will do more harm than good to our sport.

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Friday, February 8, 2008

• Berkley 50lb Digital Scale

The Berkley Digital Fish Scale is a very simple scale with a handle and a hook. I really don't have much to say about it. I mean, it's a scale. It either works or it doesn't, right? The documentation states that the scale only weighs up to 50lbs, but I used mine in a pinch to weigh some luggage before a flight. It gave me a reading of 54lbs, so it seems there is a little leeway. I wouldn't push it though. The 50lbs could be the limitation on the chain attaching the hook to the scale and not necessarily what the scale is really capable of reporting.

Mine is fairly accurate and the XTools scale I recently purchased gives the same weights for various objects of known weights. Some people have the same Berkley scale and report weights being off. The scale holds up to 10 weights in memory. It automatically calculates the average weight as well as the total weight entered in the scale. It is also able to tare weights for weighing multiple fish. The scale automatically turns itself off after 240 seconds if you don't use it unless you're in Memory Mode. The battery life is very good. I've had mine for a long time and I'm still using the original batteries. Should the batteries die, the FS50 takes two 3-volt Lithium CR2032 batteries.

I am not fond of the hook style scales, so I really didn't like using the FS50. The hook won't stay in place unless you puncture another hole in the mouth of your catch. I try not to cause more damage to a fish once caught. I think most anglers run the hook underneath the gill plate (not the gills!). Here's how I used mine. Prior to removing the lure hooked in the mouth, I'd run the scale hook through anything it might fit, like an eye of a snap swivel, a split ring, or through a loop knot I tied to the snap swivel. The fish hangs just fine, although you should tare the weight of the lure prior to weighing the fish to be precise. As long as the bass was hooked well, that method worked. Another option is to hang a spare 3/0 to 4/0 hook from the scale so as to only make a tiny hole. That worked too, but was a hassle. I made that 4/0 hook barbless so it was easy to remove. For what it's worth, I'm much happier using the XTools scale instead.

I also found remembering how to manage weights to be a bit of a pain. If I spent all day weighing lots of fish, I'm sure I'd catch on. But when an outing on the water does not happen very often, I had to dig the instructions out each trip. The instructions sound simple enough when reading through it all, but if I don't use the scale with frequent repetition, I'm not going to remember any of it.

The operating instructions are not available online and recently, I came across someone who tossed theirs in the garbage. Since I had trouble remembering how to use this scale, I figured it couldn't hurt to type it up for my own sake. Might as well share it here, right? I'd hate to lose my copy.

The Final Say:

The FS50 is a cumbersome tool with somewhat complicated instructions, but has great battery life and is accurate at weighing anything you can get your hands on as long as it's less than 50lbs.
Operating Instructions1

A. Powering-on the scale
1. Press and hold the POWER button for two seconds. Scale will perform a self-test by displaying four 8s for three seconds. When "0.00 kg" or "0 lb 0 oz" is displayed on the screen, scale is zeroed-out and ready for normal operation.
B. Normal Weighing
1. Hang fish on the attached hook. Weight is displayed in either kilograms or pounds and ounces.
C. Switching between unit weights
1. Press and hold the POWER and CHOOSE button simultaneously for three seconds. Unit will change from weighing pounds and ounces to kilograms and vice versa.
D. Taring Weights
1. Weigh a bag or container till its weight is steadily displayed on the screen.
2. Press the POWER button once. Scale will zero-out and show "0.00 kg" or "0 lb 0 oz" and is ready for weighing multiple fish together.
E. Holding a weight
1. With the weight displayed on the screen, press the CHOOSE button. This will hold the current weight and is indicated by displaying an H to the left of the screen. To unlock the hold, simply press the POWER button.
F. Storing weights into memory
1. With a weight in the hold mode and an H displayed to the left of the screen, enter the memory mode by pressing the CHOOSE button. While in the memory mode, pressing the CHOOSE button will allow you to navigate through ten stored memories. These are indicated on the left and numbered 0 through 9. There are also 4 letters that indicate other options. An A shows the average of all stored weights. An E displays the total and a C resets the memory.
2. To store a weight, simply hold down the CHOOSE button for three seconds. Weights will automatically store into one of the number registers. To see the numbers with their weights, simply scroll through the numbers by pressing the CHOOSE button as described above.
G. Resetting the memory
1. With the unit in the C mode, press and hold the CHOOSE button for six seconds and scale will reset memory and zero out. Press the POWER button and scale is ready to begin weighing again.
H. Powering-off manually
1. Press and hold the POWER button for 6 seconds.

1. Berkley. "Operating Instructions." FS30, FS50, & FS65 Fish Scale Operating Instructions. 2006.


Anonymous said...

thanks alot needed the instructions

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting the instructions, didn't find them anywhere else.


Anonymous said...

Hey thanks a lot for these instructions. Almost threw this thing in the garbage. You cannot find these anywhere.

Cheers from BC, Canada.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the instructions. No way I could have found out how to change units otherwise.

Cheers from TP, England

Anonymous said...

thanks a bunch for the instructions on the FS50 berkley digital fish scale. have had problems with it from the beginning to once we figure it out each time it seems to work fine but it's the figuring that's a problem. read thru, printed out and will keep on the boat. i expect FAR fewer problems now that we've actually read the info. thanks for putting it on here-doesn't seem to be ANYwhere else.
(pitched ours too)
jan in western KY.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for doing what Berkley won't. Just what I needed.

Anonymous said...

Thanks a ton! Not sure what made you decide to randomly type these instructions and put them online, but I'm glad you did! Thanks again!

Joseph Thurman said...

Wonderfull! I can use my scale again. thankyou so much!

Anonymous said...

Thanks - couldn't figure out how to get it out of kilograms and was tired of trying to multiply by 2.2

Anonymous said...

just got new batteries for the fish scale ...screen reads "FULL" and cannot get it to work..what have I done wrong?

Bass Dem said...

Sounds like the weights you've stored need to be cleared.