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View Poll Results: Do you carry paper charts?
Yes, it's my primary navigation system. 23 35.94%
Yes, it's my backup navigation system. 33 51.56%
No, I do not have any paper charts on board. I'm in the 21st century, and never use them. 7 10.94%
What? 1 1.56%
Voters: 64. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-03-2015, 06:44   #16
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

We use both depending on where we are. have been places where there were/are no electronic charts.

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Old 08-03-2015, 07:33   #17
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

I've been offshore when the chartplotter failed, one handheld GPS went over the side, and the other wouldn't lock satellites.

Very glad we had paper charts when we made landfall.

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Old 08-03-2015, 09:06   #18
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

Originally Posted by Jammer Six View Post
How do you check a chart to make sure it's correct?
US gov publishes a list of corrections for their charts. You go thru your charts with a pen and manually update each chart back to the date of the chart.

Other countries do similar things.

In the end the charts are not 'correct', but instead are up to date with the most recent available information.
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Old 08-03-2015, 09:15   #19
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

I have several friends that use nothing but their chart plotter with no backup. I do not see where a paper chart takes up so much room as to be a nuisance, but they refuse to carry any. Granted, 99% of trips are within sight of shore off the kelp beds and the chart plotters are yet to let any of us down. Still, I personally feel more comfortable having a backup that does not require batteries.
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Old 08-03-2015, 09:31   #20
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

i plan with paper and keep paper at my side while sailing.
when combined with cruising guides specific to your cruising area, you might even be able to make your destination without hitting rocks or running aground somewhere or being taken by surprise by something not immediately seen in the gps map.....
btw--do not even believe the proximity of gps placement is deadnuts many coming into this lagoon have learned to not trust the gps...they are my entertainment, and labelled mud wrestlers.
they become nicely stuck about 50 ft to port of the true channel in shallow water. (it is funny how these shoalings are readily visible to the naked eye, yet so many continue to trust something other than their own eyes in a tight and unforgiving channel.)
we have much entertainment for free to the observant.
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Old 08-03-2015, 11:03   #21
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

In 10 years sailing, I've not used a paper chart once. Oh, I know how to do DR, bearings, etc. But for coastal its no big deal. I do have opencpn with ECN on two pc's, plus navonics on the tablet. Plus an old chartplotter and an even older gps.

Mind you I do have a few old large scale charts that I used as wall paper, well bulkhead paper, that I can used in a pinch.

Though if on the odd chance I found myself on the ocean with out electronics, I'd make an astrolabe and sail the latitudes like christ columbo did.
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Old 08-03-2015, 11:41   #22
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

Never used anything but paper charts in 35+ years of sailing/cruising. And I spent most of my working life in the computer/high tech industry.
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Old 08-03-2015, 18:54   #23
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

Originally Posted by Jammer Six View Post
You use both charts?
The poll question was whether we use either paper or electronic charts.
I use both, but not simultaneously during normal navigation. On a coastal passage, say from the Columbia River bar past Destruction Island, and the Needles (note these names!), to the Straits of Juan de Fuca I plot on the paper chart. Sure the chart plotter is running, but mostly for data (COG, VOG, Lat/Lon, AIS, etc). At any useful zoom the hazards (Umatilla Reef!) are lost.

The exception is not active navigation, but when I want to check the accuracy of an electronic chart compared to a paper chart. It is also interesting to compare how an electronic chart renders an area to the paper chart, especially the vector charts. The raster charts are essentially photocopies of the paper charts. But the vector charts have a lot more power and features. I find comparing how they render the vector data to the traditional paper chart is a useful exercise in better understanding the charts. But that may be pretty geeky for most, but fun for the propeller heads.
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Old 08-03-2015, 19:05   #24

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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

Originally Posted by OZwingle View Post
The poll question was whether we use either paper or electronic charts.
No. It wasn't.
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Old 08-03-2015, 19:28   #25
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

I use eyeballs and a compass. When I get out of sight of land I release birds and follow them.

I have a couple of GPSs on board and harbor charts for anywhere I sail. The only real time I use them is at night.

If I were passage making the GPS would remain off except for getting a fix twice a day so I could update the Paper chart position.

Yes I know the satellites are gonna blow up, get turned off or fall outta the sky. But with last know fix I should be able to find a continent with a compass.

Could probably miss an island but maybe install an ADF for "close" in DF.
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Old 08-03-2015, 19:34   #26
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

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Old 08-03-2015, 20:14   #27
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

Originally Posted by roland stockham View Post
So 13.85% of you have no valid insurence and could be held liable for any damage in the event of a collision due to having no legal means of navigation! That phase 'predent' in you insurence means taking all reasonable measure to comply with SOLAS and your national regulations which include carrying certified and updated hydrographic charts. Chartplotter with rster charts does not count as they are not certified. Must be paper or ENC.
I do have valid insurance and upon careful reading of my policy, I find no mention of 'predent'. My policy is 'all risk' and unless a surveyor can find a known defect that I failed to correct, I'm covered. Being a private yacht, I am not required to maintain SOLAS standards, unlike a commercial vessel. My 'national regulations' say nothing about a private yacht's requirement to carry paper charts. However, this thread is about paper versus electronic charting and not insurance.

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Old 08-03-2015, 20:49   #28
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

This is not meant as a criticism Klmmicro, however I beg to differ with your statement , "I do not see where a paper chart takes up so much room as to be a nuisance". World cruising becomes a whole different story to coastal cruising.

The charts for Indonesia alone were more than 100 charts. Just keeping them in order was a major, time consuming task. We have a large boat with a dedicated chart table area and yet the complete underneath of one of the fwd berth is dedicated to just chart storage.

Add the cost of charts and updates and it becomes a very, very, very big nuisance. The costs run into the thousands of dollars. For instance each Australian chart is $35 and you need more than 15 of them to adequately cover the Queensland coast alone.

A lot of cruisers try to cheat the system with photocopies of passed down pirated charts, however even that still runs into hundreds if not thousands of dollars worth of photo copying investment and they are often outdated and in poor shape. So that negates their usefulness, accuracy, and reason for carrying them at all. Relying solely on pirated CM93 charts can also have it's limitations.

Up to-date official hydrographic charts are not cheap. It is one of the reasons a lot of world cruisers are walking away from them. Electronic charts are slowly becoming price competitive and with updates available online the management becomes a lot easier. Inovations like community layers on Navionics and the new sonar overlays are making their charts more accurate and useful every day. Being able to hit a button and retrieve a phone number or email for a marina/coastguard etc can be very handy.

Onboard we prefer to use a combination of Navionics+ Platinum on a Raymarine radar/plotter, Navionics on a Tablet, Opencpn cm93 on a dedicated nav system and as a final backup paper, although as I said earlier it has been a long, long time since I found it necessary to refer to a paper chart.

The other great source for navigational information is from other cruisers tracks.(Predominately cm93) They are shared amongst cruisers in marinas, bars, anchorages and on blogs. When all put together it keeps most of us out of trouble and off the hard bits.


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Old 09-03-2015, 16:44   #29
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Re: Paper Charts: The Poll

I always have paper charts on board with me but only really plot on them when I'm offshore (it's been drilled into me to mark positions every hour so you can DR if everything goes to hell). Up on deck I usually just refer to my Navionics app and compass and that's really all I use when I'm sailing inshore. Sailing in coastal or high stress areas, I'll also refer to a plotter and mark locations on there.

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