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Old 09-06-2008, 12:27   #31
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If you are short handed or even single handed, a waterproof plotter sited where it can be seen from the helm is a great boon. My preference is for a CMap Max system - probably the Navman 6" display.

I would use a laptop as well (with a second identical hard drive available if that hard drive fails), and would make sure it was secured down (I used elastic buingee cord on mine) You also need to ensure that the display is supported as this is a likely point of failure.

I would use the laptop for planning (it is much easier than using the 6" display), and secure it during the voyage, but have it as a reversionary mode if the plotter fails.
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Old 09-06-2008, 12:32   #32
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I agree with Talbot. Most folks who use a laptop (any flavor) as the primary chartplotter seem to have problems sooner or later... though it is so seductive since you already have more-than-adequate computation power, screen, etcetera... so why buy another whole machine? But with the exceptions of pricey industrial or marine units (Toughbook and the like) they're just not made to handle the abuses of shock, salt air, droplets off your foulies, and so on. I'd second the suggestion of any kind of integrated off-the-shelf chartplotter at the primary helm (or helms) and a laptop, mostly packed away, for use as a planner, backup nav system, and mail/web/writing machine.

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Old 10-06-2008, 05:45   #33
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Why didn’t you have the relevant paper charts anyway? Surly it is only good seamanship?

Here in the UK they do leisure folios of a cruising area for around 40 quid for roughly 12 or 13 charts. Printed on water-resistant paper and you can use them with chart plotters and the like.

If you only have electronic ones what happens when the power goes? Rely on Photocopies? Really, get a grip and buy a proper chart.
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Old 10-06-2008, 05:49   #34
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Really, get a grip and buy a proper chart.

Really, I was finishing up at 2000 mile delivery on a boat with about 700 watts of solar and wind and a 600AH battery bank as well as 2 alternators (one on each engine). The power doesn't "go." Get a grip yourself. What a rude post.

All the ships of the world rely on electronic charts (mandated by the US Govt for our ships). If they are good enough for the big ships, how can not be good enough for my little boat?
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Old 10-06-2008, 06:03   #35
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Sorry SSullivan, Didnt mean to be rude. Please forgive.
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Old 10-06-2008, 06:22   #36
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... Get a grip yourself. What a rude post.
All the ships of the world rely on electronic charts (mandated by the US Govt for our ships). If they are good enough for the big ships, how can not be good enough for my little boat?
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Why didn’t you have the relevant paper charts anyway? Surly it is only good seamanship? ...
Questions are generally perceived as rude, when one isn’t proud of their answer.

An Electronic Chart is only a “legal” replacement for paper, when it is part of an Electronic Chart Display and Information System (ECDIS).

An Electronic Chart Display and Information System (ECDIS) is a specific form of computer-based navigation information system, that complies with International Maritime Organization (IMO) regulations, and can be used in lieu of paper navigation charts in some areas.

Not all electronic chart systems can be called an ECDIS, and but the term is often incorrectly used to refer to any type of Electronic Chart System (ECS). Only when official ENCs are run in a compliant ECDIS system can it be called an ECDIS. Users of chart plotters, other than fully approved ECDIS, are invariably greeted with a warning message, stating that the system is not to be used as the sole means for navigation.

See also:
What are Electronic Charts Systems
And:
http://www.iho.shom.fr/ECDIS/Facts/F...tsSection1.pdf
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Old 10-06-2008, 06:34   #37
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I've been using a laptop as my primary chartplotter since 1999, and have replaced due to obsolesence, rather than failure. As long as you have a dry boat and don't drop them, they should last for years. With a laptop, you have a choice of software, and are not at the mercy of a sole source for technology upgrades like AIS, which will cost as much as a new laptop.

If you go the laptop route, be aware that there are huge differences in power consumption between identical performing units. I'm typing this on a Fujitsu with a core-duo processor, powered through a small inverter, and my panel says I am drawing 2.5 amps. My backup Gateway with a P4 processer would be drawing about 7.5 amps.
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Old 10-06-2008, 07:10   #38
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Only when official ENCs are run in a compliant ECDIS system can it be called an ECDIS.
Why is it I get the sense the only way to get a system ECDIS cetified is to belong to a industry group who also happens to control the testing standards and costs, theyby locking out everyone who isn't in that industry group? I think a number of people complained NMEA2000 is a good example of this as it cost something like 200k$ to get started. So the hobbyist is pretty much locked out until when and if the manufactures deign to allow such tinkering.

Also, as I read it, the key word is ship. I imagine we all have boats by the maritime definition.

Still, good links though. How do you come up with all of them?
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Old 10-06-2008, 08:06   #39
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... links ... How do you come up with all of them?
I ask, and Google finds.
All I provide are accurately spelled and precisely applicable search terms.

As Matthew is purported to have said: “Seek, and ye shall find ... Ask, and it shall be given you...”.
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Old 10-06-2008, 11:55   #40
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All the ships of the world rely on electronic charts (mandated by the US Govt for our ships). If they are good enough for the big ships, how can not be good enough for my little boat?
If you assembled a system of comparable quality, it might be good enough.

The system on the big ships is permanently mounted so it cannot fall off the table and break. They also carry a second system to use if there is a problem with the primary.

This improves reliability, but it also drives up cost.
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Old 10-06-2008, 17:16   #41
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Dang Sullivan,
You take advice on this board on a lot of other subjects. Why not this one?
Everywhere on here there are threads about navigation.
In all of them, most of the respondents think paper should be carried on board still, even if it is print-outs.
Guessing that most of them (and myself) are just old fuddy duddys and are wrong could be right.
I don't know.
But........
My last sail (a short delivery) I took my own charts as the owner had a nice new Garmin chartplotter and no charts.
We looked at the chart once or twice for the ability to get that "all at once" view, but that is it.
Man was it cool to be able to go from marker to marker with 30 to 50 foot visibility and having that little pointy cursor right on the screen in front of us. Way Cool.
I want to live long enough to not feel the need to buy a paper chart, but I may only get fuddyer and duddeyer.
I don't know.
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Old 11-06-2008, 09:25   #42
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I ask, and Google finds.
All I provide are accurately spelled and precisely applicable search terms.

As Matthew is purported to have said: “Seek, and ye shall find ... Ask, and it shall be given you...”.
Yes, but I also know that with Google (et al) the saying could be rephrased as:

"Seek, and ye shall attempt to find it amongst 2.2 million pages ... Ask, and receive a '404 error' from 20% of them and links to porn from an equal number"
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Old 11-06-2008, 13:30   #43
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Maren:
If Google is returning mostly '404 errors’ and links to Porn, you should refine your search terms to more accurately reflect your intended query.
Ie: "Bare copper conductor" will produce more electrically relevant returns, that will "naked wire".
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Old 11-06-2008, 15:15   #44
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Maren:
If Google is returning mostly '404 errors’ and links to Porn, you should refine your search terms to more accurately reflect your intended query.
Ie: "Bare copper conductor" will produce more electrically relevant returns, that will "naked wire".
It is still an art that takes practice and we all know you are the artist.

I tend to also draw "stick figures" along with Maren on many occaisons ending my search by clicking (violently) the red-surrounded X in the upper right corner.
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Old 12-06-2008, 10:41   #45
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Google does also offer some filter options, and adding (this won't hurt a bit) some Boolean operators like "- porn" to the search line may also help clean them up. On the main GOGGLE.COM page there's a little "preferences" tab, and if you let google set on cookie so it knows who you are, it can remember and use them.
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