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Old 28-03-2011, 17:42   #16
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Re: What's a necessity and what's a luxury?

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Originally Posted by WhatDreamersDo View Post
We're working in selecting a GPS for the boat. Is there one that combines wind speed and sonar in addition to chartplotting? We've been researching but in all honesty, I'm confused about what options we need. (We're novices afraid of getting lost and running aground.)

We'd love some input. We're staying mostly in the Keys and the Carribean.
Separate units is the way to go. If you want to have them talk to each other and/or a laptop fine, but you don't want one failure to leave you with nothing.

Bare minimum
Compass
Depth sounder
GPS with crosstrack indicator
Windex at mast head
VHF
Lead line
Paper/plastic charts
Heel indicator

Extras in order of importance.
Speed/log
Chart plotter
RADAR
AIS
Fluxgate compass
wind instruments

Going off shore an EPIRB probably would be a minimum for me, inshore I wouldn't get it. I would look closely at chances of fog for my intended cruising area before I got the RADAR. AIS, only if it made the Admiral happy. Fluxgate and wind instruments, not interested personally. Power loss will not render a regular compass useless nor the windex. Heel indicator will tell me when I've got too much sail up.

A
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Old 28-03-2011, 18:05   #17
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Sorry couldn't agree less with that list

Firstly a log is allmost the first requirement without it DR is very difficult to do

Heel indicator , what the little plastic junk thing.

Mine
Basic necessities

Magnetic compass
Speed log
Depth
gps ( no need for xtrack plot your course on a chart. )
VHF

Next step intermediate systems
( windex is a nice but not neccessary to have as apparent wind angle is easily determined on a boat)
Wind speed meter ( true and apparent)
Chart plotter
Autopilot ( for longer journeys or short handed)
AIS class B ( especially if you sail in heavy trafficked areas, these devices are cheap now, buy a transponder preferably )

Advanced system
Good quality radar
Gyro stabilised fast heading sensor
Networked to overlay radar and chart for collision detection and improved situational awareness radar is far more useful then just fog. ( night, squalls, verifying charts, land,fixes etc)

I'd actually nearly move radar up the list as it's a supremely useful device to have. I'd prefer to have a cheap radar then none at all.

Ps if you need a heel indicator to tell you you have too much sail up I suggest more training

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Old 28-03-2011, 18:46   #18
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Re: What's a necessity and what's a luxury?

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AIS Not Transmitting
I have a Raymarine class A AIS 500 Transeiver. It is connected to a Raymarine E120 Chartplotter and a Raymarine VHF Radio. all components were installed by a Raymarine authorized installer. Since day one the AIS Transeiver received AIS signals but never transmitted the information from my vessel. It was checked out several times by the installer and even was on a land line with Raymarine technician when he checked out the unit. The icon on the chartplotter appears to show that the unit is working properly but my vessel is not visible. Any thoughts of what could be the problem?
Maybe you are correct that networked instrument problems are due to poor installation, but whatever the reason the sorts of problems addressed in this other thread quoted above are constant here on the board, on other forums like Panbo, and onboard boats out cruising. They are a constant source of headaches.
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Old 28-03-2011, 19:51   #19
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Re: What's a necessity and what's a luxury?

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Originally Posted by WhatDreamersDo View Post
We're working in selecting a GPS for the boat. Is there one that combines wind speed and sonar in addition to chartplotting?
Sure. Get a NMEA 2000 GPS with sounder (Garmin GPSMAP 441s would be a good choice) and an NMEA 2000 wind sensor (e.g., Garmin GWS 10). This will give you wind, depth, water speed, GPS, and charts all on one display, for less money than three dedicated instruments. If you're concerned about equipment failures, get a second chart plotter as a backup. The total package (including the backup unit) will cost not much more than a set of dedicated wind, depth, and speed gauges. You can use the two units to display the same or different information content. You can add more electronics (e.g., AIS) later.

Quote:
We've been researching but in all honesty, I'm confused about what options we need. (We're novices afraid of getting lost and running aground.)
You already got a lot of good advice, but here's my 2c. Essential--a good compass, paper charts, and a lead line. If you sail single-handed, an autopilot or windvane is also essential.
Useful (in order of decreasing importance GPS, Depth sounder, VHF radio, chart plotter, radar, AIS receiver, knotmeter/log, and wind instruments.
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Old 28-03-2011, 21:29   #20
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Re: What's a necessity and what's a luxury?

My "essential " list is even shorter

Compass
Leadline
Sextant/tables if offshore
parallel rule/pencil
charts

Everything above that is a luxury.
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Old 28-03-2011, 21:30   #21
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Re: What's a necessity and what's a luxury?

MInd you I haven't always had charts either.
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Old 28-03-2011, 21:41   #22
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Re: What's a necessity and what's a luxury?

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My "essential " list is even shorter

Compass
Leadline
Sextant/tables if offshore
parallel rule/pencil
charts

Everything above that is a luxury.
I assume there is a time piece to go with the sextant and maybe a radio to check it by.

Actually Dana's list plus the above would be my BARE minimum.

The electronic stuff I list earlier is what I really intend to have.
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Old 03-04-2011, 20:27   #23
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Re: What's a necessity and what's a luxury?

Yes, forgot about that, but these days a $20 watch is a good enough timepiece, so a simple all band receiver for the beeps (do they still do tile on WWV and WWVH?) and you are there.
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Old 03-04-2011, 20:41   #24
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Re: What's a necessity and what's a luxury?

my gps is capable to do alladat plus ais, with the propEr transducer and nmea port set up. is an old and outdatd one, buti have all that in it. i love mine. is GARMIN.
my essentials list also includes putty that cures underwater and pipe repair kit and plugs an other such items for water to remain on outside of boat.
also crew. LOL
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Old 03-04-2011, 21:38   #25
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Re: What's a necessity and what's a luxury?

dana-tenacity... you got it right IMHO... I've delivered boats with all the fancy integrated gizmos and been dragged kicking and screaming into the high tech world of navigation and piloting by crew who were much more savy than I in the high tech world. But when everything goes to **** offshore and your electronics are burned or otherwise incapacitated through power glitches or internal gremlins, it is comforting to know that a sextant, knotlog, paper charts and an accurate time piece are aboard along with some one who knows how to read a reduction table and take a noon or star sight. Old fashioned piloting is getting to be a lost art, I fear, but it will always have a place on any vessel I own or pilot... cheers, Capt Phil
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