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Old 03-02-2015, 06:14   #46
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bewitched View Post
. . . .
This is precisely what route planning software is good at. Most will allow you to set a minimum depth and the software will not plot a route over such areas. I believe such a feature is a ECDIS requirement.

It will plot an optimum route through the archipelago, for your particular boat (from polars) and for the weather conditions expected (from Gribs) (you can even stipulate that you don't want to sail in more than 25kts for example).

This is near impossible on a paper chart
I'd like to see that -- what kind of software are you talking about, exactly?

Some guys on the other thread who have used ECDIS on commercial ships say that this function in ECDIS doesn't work for this particular problem.

I'm a technophile and early adopter (I was using a laptop in 1983!), and have no dogmatic attachment to paper as such, but I have not yet seen the electronic setup which is capable of doing safe planning and navigation in complex water in any kind of convenient way. Doesn't mean it doesn't exist, but I haven't seen it.
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Old 03-02-2015, 06:58   #47
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
......................., but I have not yet seen the electronic setup which is capable of doing safe planning and navigation in complex water in any kind of convenient way. Doesn't mean it doesn't exist, but I haven't seen it.
With a Garmin plotter (or plotters), their free software, "HomePort" allows planning and creating routes on a computer and uploading the routes and waypoints to the plotter. At that point, it's as simple as selecting a route and following the orange line.
This may or may not suit your needs but it works for me. I may plan a cruise months in advance but I take my laptop with me and can make changes anytime I want.

Now before anyone gets themselves all worked up, "following the line" is only a figure of speech. It should be clear to everybody that what you see with your own eyes (markers, obstructions, other boats, etc.) takes precedence over the route on the chart plotter.

So I do have paper charts of most of my cruising area but I seldom pull them out and look at them. I haven't needed to.

As for the lightning strike mentioned above, there are a lot of "what if" situations. We cannot account for all of them so we do the best we can and take a calculated risk with the others. "What if" you are operating solo and have a heart attack or stroke? What would you do? Even if you're not alone, you chance of getting timely medical help is slim to none. The only way to avoid that risk is to never leave port.
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Old 03-02-2015, 07:11   #48
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

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Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Colemj,

To me, what happened with Paul L highlights one reason a person might view some e-charts package deals with suspicion. YMMV

I think e-charts are subject to dangerous mis-use due to what's left out of them and to operator error (for example, Team Vestas). Again, Ymmv.

We use both e-charts and paper. I'd like to see paper charts stay available. Again, YMMV.

Sorry if feel banghead towards me. It is, of course, only my opinion, just as you express yours.

Ann
My apologies Ann, I was only quoting your post for the part about Paul L - and the rest of my post was in response to the thread in general, and not you or your post in specific. In particular the "banghead" thing.

Yes, one should purchase e-chart portfolios the same way one purchases paper chart portfolios - with suspicion. It has nothing at all to do with e-charts. In his case, it was a specific vendor of charts and the way they packaged and advertised, not e-charts in general.

Again, I have purchased paper chart portfolios that show on their advertisement to contain all the charts of an area, only to find that some are left out, and are only found in an overlapping product.

The Vestas thing is a red-herring. Have you ever heard of anyone coming to grief using paper charts? One cannot ignore that which renders an argument weak, or cherry-pick only that which supports it.

It is not the chart format itself that is the issue.

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Old 03-02-2015, 07:16   #49
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

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Originally Posted by Emmalina View Post
Hope you never get hit by lightning when your in open sea as you might find these "Outdated items " rather useful as you throw out your fried systems !
This is the unexamined argument that these discussions always hinge on.

It is just as easy to say "hope you never have an accident at sea where your paper charts are lost or destroyed". I posted an incident where this actually happened.

We have been hit by lightning and fried our main charting system. We had no problem continuing to cruise for several weeks with electronic charts because we have alternate systems.

You are assuming a lightning strike that takes out alkaline batteries also? How useful are your paper charts with no GPS? I imagine that a sextant, accurate clock and sight reduction tables are also required?

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Old 03-02-2015, 07:19   #50
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

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Originally Posted by El Pinguino View Post
Yup...your wrong

He could have bought a copy of NZ 5121 which is what the CM93 charts of Cavalli Passage are based on https://data.linz.govt.nz/layer/1304...valli-passage/ ....

As I said earlier this bloke is darwin prospect...
You cherry-picked my quote to make one part of it relate to a different part, and then used it against me.

Not nice. And very transparent.

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Old 03-02-2015, 07:21   #51
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

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Originally Posted by El Pinguino View Post
Ah, is this like the 'paperless office' we were told about in the computer dream time 30 or so years ago?
No. A more correct analogy would be the typewriter-less office.

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Old 03-02-2015, 07:31   #52
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

I'm pretty sure if chat forums like this existed back when Loran, and even GPS, was introduced, there would be a very similar discussion about sextants.

Heck, I remember the highly passionate arguments around roller furling vs. hank on sails. The hank on advocates employed the same arguments, techniques and fears as the paper advocates do here.

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Old 03-02-2015, 07:34   #53
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
I'd like to see that -- what kind of software are you talking about, exactly?

Some guys on the other thread who have used ECDIS on commercial ships say that this function in ECDIS doesn't work for this particular problem.

I'm a technophile and early adopter (I was using a laptop in 1983!), and have no dogmatic attachment to paper as such, but I have not yet seen the electronic setup which is capable of doing safe planning and navigation in complex water in any kind of convenient way. Doesn't mean it doesn't exist, but I haven't seen it.

I have used both Transas andFuruno ECDIS systems quite extensively. Both systems will quite happily allow you to plot a course over shallow areas, neither was able to automatically plot a course through an obstacle course of islands and rocks.

What they will do is warn the user that the course plotted is over areas where the water depth is less than that shallow water depth alarm has been set by the user.

The ECDIS has a Safe Check function. Once the route is plotted, if the safe check is used, the ECDIS will high light all areas of concern, including restricted areas, TSS etc, as well as depths less than the shallow depth alarm.
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Old 03-02-2015, 07:42   #54
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

Relevant in my book. We have them, we use them; and we are keeping them.

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Old 03-02-2015, 07:58   #55
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

A lot of this just gets down to personal preference versus electronic books (recreational or reference) and mission-critical systems. I recently helped some new cruisers take their boat down the coast a fair ways. It was a 10 day trip that ended up longer because of weather.

The owner planned on using an iPad with e-charts and a wireless GPS. There was also a Furuno radar/CP but the owner and crew did not know how to use it (I had one like it once so I did). However, I insisted we take a portable GPS that was/is a dinosaur in its own right. It was a backup. It ended up being the primary nav system.

The iPad would not keep a charge and it would not recharge when it was on. That sounds strange to me but that was the situation. The wifi GPS would go in and out or would just not connect at all. The iPad would have to be rebooted, the GPS turned on and off, etc. In effect we did not have a reliable chart capability with the iPad. We ended up using it for going in and out of harbors and it worked fine for that so long as we did not use it in between except sporadically.

The Furuno CP used so much juice we could not run it much unless the motor was running. We had paper charts, but as you all know it takes a lot of work to use them for long passages in open water. You still need a functioning GPS to use them (unless you are better than I am at dead reckoning). We didn't have a sextant and I was OK with that LOL.

I was more than happy we had paper charts on board. We could at least use them to get in and out of harbors and in other difficult areas. We didn't use them. But I have been on trips (on my boat and with others) where their PC's died. I have also been on trips where the chartplotter went bad.

This is not a Kindle versus paperback issue. I personally like books but I can use a Kindle. I have been an early adopter for the entire life of computers. I built a computer from a kit back in the 60's. I used the first Compaq portables. I used the first HP portables. I have programmed mainframes, minicomputers, PC's, servers, marine electronics, etc. I do go through a learning curve with any piece of gear I am not familiar with, as we all do except for may be the occasional savant.

My preference: electronic - always. My backup - paper. I don't have to have the latest paper chart updated with all Notices to Mariners (but you better have them in Canadian waters if you are boarded).

I want to have multiple backups. We ended up using the hand held GPS dinosaur as our primary nav equipment since the rest of the gear was unreliable. If I had a battery powered whatever, that would be OK but it would not be my ultimate backup. I brought on a big package of C cells for the little GPS and we burned through most of those. We sailed to waypoints that we picked off of the iPad and the Furuno and put on the little GPS.

It was pretty archaic but it got us from point A to point B so long as we weren't going close to land. We needed either a chartplotter (of some sort) plus GPS or paper charts to do that. We ended up using the Furuno hardwired chartplotter some of the time, but we cussed the iPad from day one.

I can just hear the cries of anguish on how everyone else in the world has never had a problem with their iPad or PC. We went through three PCs going to NZ. My buddy in Mexico has gone through two in two years. This can be from power issues, battery issues, software issues, device compatibility issues, etc. Lots of different ways a laptop can die, just when you need it the most. Not always. Probably never for some. But it's happened to everyone I have personal experience with. Must be something to that. And I challenge any of you to say you have never found that a "required" system update did not screw up your applications on your laptop.

And, I like paper charts for planning. Zooming in and out for getting around a cape and then making a turn through rocks in to a harbor can be a nightmare. Many of the reefs and rocks are small but they are big enough to ruin your day. They often don't show up on the wider e-charts. You can only see them if you zoom in. The better plotting software is pretty seamless between charts, but even the pure digital charts have issues. I haven't seen a perfect one yet. Large scale paper charts don't always show every rock but it is easier to find them on paper (for me and a lot of others) than it is electronically. I still will use the chartplotter if I have reasonably up to date charts (and I have the chart I need but that's true with paper).

This is not an issue with dinosaur sailors having trouble with electronics, although there are many diehard sextant people out there. I sold mine in NZ. I might regret that someday but I don't think so. But whatever I do I will have backups on backups for critical systems.

One of the primary problems I have seen with using PC's and Mac's (I have both) is putting all kinds of other software on them on top of their charting applications. Often that is not a problem, but it often is as well.

But pick your poison because no nav system is perfect just like none of us is perfect (except a few of the posters on this forum). And it all costs money. And all can be a PITA. But the best way to stay safe is to have reliable backups for the inevitable crash. And you need to know how to use the backups. I was sure happy we had a dinosaur GPS and knew how to use it.
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Old 03-02-2015, 07:59   #56
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

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Originally Posted by El Pinguino View Post
No... he was caught out because he wasn't using a chart of the appropriate scale for the job in hand. He obviously had never heard of the 'one inch' rule.
.
What is the "one inch rule"? Sounds important.
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Old 03-02-2015, 08:23   #57
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

I think when comparing paper charts to electronic charts we have to differentiate between electronic charts on chart plotters designed and built for the purpose and smart phones or laptop computers with accessories cobbled together to form a makeshift navigation system.


My chart plotter (MFD) lets me know at a glance where my boat is (on the chart), what direction I am going, how fast I am going, how deep the water is under the boat, and my choice of several other things.


A paper chart doesn't do these things but perhaps for some folks, doing it the hard or traditional way is part of the fun. There's no rule that we have to use one or the other. To each his/her own.
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Old 03-02-2015, 08:24   #58
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

A handheld GPS using C-cells!!! You get the brontosaurus award!

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Old 03-02-2015, 08:54   #59
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

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I posted the link a few messages back. It's typically ambiguous, but I have never ... ever ... never, heard of any Canadian marine law enforcement even asking about this issue. Has anyone?
Any "enforcement" will occur after an incident. That comes a a friend who is in the Office of Safe Boating.
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Old 03-02-2015, 08:56   #60
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Re: Are paper charts a dinosaur?

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I posted the link a few messages back. It's typically ambiguous, but I have never ... ever ... never, heard of any Canadian marine law enforcement even asking about this issue. Has anyone?
Boy, Canada certainly isn't crystal clear on this.

I was just on the CA hydrographic services website for a reason unrelated to this thread. On it, they discuss the electronic chart products they provide and talk about having both vector and raster versions of charts - with separate descriptions of each type.

Here is what they say specifically about the raster product: "Mariners using raster charts are required under the Canada Shipping Act to also carry paper charts as a backup."

Now, under the description of the vector product, they point out that those charts conform to international S-57 standards, etc - but nowhere do they make the statement that they do for raster charts. They don't even mention paper charts or imply them in any way.

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