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Old 17-02-2016, 10:04   #46
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

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Originally Posted by autumnbreeze27 View Post
You can have a stack of ipads below charged up, but it only takes one time that they don't work right at the wrong time and you're shipwrecked.
Odd thst, did every boat get shipwrecked before chart plotters came along?

Does no one do passage plans anymore?

Seems far too much reliance on electronics, IMHO.
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Old 17-02-2016, 11:20   #47
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

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Odd thst, did every boat get shipwrecked before chart plotters came along?

Does no one do passage plans anymore?

Seems far too much reliance on electronics, IMHO.
I'm saying if you're going out there, it's best to stack the odds in your favor.

The OP's question was about the best position for a chart plotter, not if he needed one or not.

Sailors can get by missing an arm or leg, but I wouldn't tie one behind my back if I didn't have to.

Seems like you just like to be disagreeable, so I'm out.
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Old 17-02-2016, 11:51   #48
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

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Originally Posted by autumnbreeze27 View Post
I'm saying if you're going out there, it's best to stack the odds in your favor.

The OP's question was about the best position for a chart plotter, not if he needed one or not.

Sailors can get by missing an arm or leg, but I wouldn't tie one behind my back if I didn't have to.

Seems like you just like to be disagreeable, so I'm out.
Did you miss the

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Old 17-02-2016, 11:53   #49
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

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Did you miss the

or missing an eye?

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Old 17-02-2016, 14:10   #50
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

Is seamanship becoming a lost art? It seems so.

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Old 17-02-2016, 14:22   #51
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

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Is seamanship becoming a lost art? It seems so.

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Seamanship is not becoming a lost art, it's simply changing from us oldies. Chartplotters, ipads and some new fangdangled thing that hasn't been invented yet are here to stay and seamanship has changed as a result. Which is also why hardly anyone uses a sextant anymore.
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Old 17-02-2016, 14:31   #52
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

If that seamanship requires glueing your eyeballs to a screen, is that still seamanship?

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Old 17-02-2016, 15:16   #53
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

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If that seamanship requires glueing your eyeballs to a screen, is that still seamanship?
Nice having the choice

One reason I'm not too bothered having a chartplotter et al in the cockpit.
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Old 17-02-2016, 15:23   #54
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

We have a 12 inch Simrad at the nav station and a 6 inch at the helm. I usually do all of the routing on the big one and it shows up on the little one. Best of both worlds and good redundancy as the little one has its own gps antenna built in. If you only have one definitely put it at the helm (and have an iPad for a back up)


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Old 18-02-2016, 03:00   #55
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

No one has mentioned that regardless of where you mount your chartplotter, GPS enabled tablet or other electronic aid to navigation they all have the same limitation.

They are only as reliable as the base charts you are using and the quality of your GPS fix.

Even the Admiralty gets it wrong from time to time (leading lights guiding sailors over a sandbank rather than passed it for example) and I have frequently anchored happily in the middle of a bay only to find the chartplotter telling me I am 50m ashore!!! Probably due to a chart reproduction/digitisation error and a GPS shift.

Therefore anyone who sails with their head buried in the chartplotter or solely relying on the chartplotter is a statistic waiting to happen. Yes it is very easy to follow the icon moving over the chart on screen, especially when coming into a new harbour and modern chartplotters have a heap of additional information available to the skipper or navigator to aid pilotage but the Mk1 Eyeball combined with the v1.0 Brain is still the best navigation tool we have.

Modern technology is great and does mean we no longer have to do constant 3 point fixes, estimated positions, dead reckoning etc but they should never be relied on totally. They are still an "Aid to Navigation" regardless of if they are at the helm (my preferred position) or at the chart table down below.

Keiron
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Old 18-02-2016, 04:37   #56
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

These decisions are influenced by many factors... and there is no one answer to this question of where to put the electronic data on a boat.... especially the "chart plotter" which these days is an MFD and can aggregate all those "eggs" in one basket.

Usually more information is better... but this too can become a distraction as one gets lost in "screens" if integrated robust data and not in seat of your pants sailing/seamanship.

Very few sailors will be at state of the art in the visual data display possibility because things are changing so fast. And this is the also the economic model for the companies who sell the stuff. Software upgrades if possible only get you so far and then if you want the new set of bells and whistles... you need to replace with the latest and greatest.

And then there's the whole issue of putting all sorts of holes in the boat to mount the stuff. At least the cockpit displays seem to have standardized around the 4" square so upgrading them is not a joinery project.

Actual sailing is informed by both watch keeping / situational awareness and the plotter and radar can augment this making you safer.

I have found in 30 years of sailing... that I don't like to sail/ drive from the helm for multiple reasons. The main one is I am a single hander with only some watch keeping help (look out) from the wifey. This means I have to trim, steer, plan and evaluate the sailing conditions. Unless there is poor visibility.... a chart plotter at the helm is not sensible. Our helm is not protected from sun, wind and rain. But a location forward in the cockpit under the dodger/spray hood is. And so are the cockpit display where there function buttons are reachable. AP and engine instruments and controls are right there as well.

There are times when I drive from the helm.... going to and from a dock, mooring or anchor in the harbor.... weaving a narrow (usually) harbor entry channel. In these close situations a chart plotter is of little use.

Another time I take the helm is when the SAILING is pure joy... usually on clear days with optimal wind and sea conditions. Why give Alison the AP all the fun? I don't need the plotter then but it's nice to have the wind and depth and accurate speed data. My B&G reports to .01 knot accuracy so you can see the results of your "helming".

And finally I drive when the conditions are a but much for Alison. She can see waves and think like a helmsman should in such conditions. We get knocked about and sail a lot of S's. At these times it's possible that visual conditions are limited and so radar and plotter at the helm are very helpful... but one can't dwell on them either.

As previously stated... my cockpit plotter "solution" as my MFD and w/radar are in below... was to get a Garmin IQue.... This was back in the day of PDAs... personal desk assistants.... little devices with phone, calendar sort of thing. Garmin added a WAAS GPS and one could load Blue Charts. It uses a stylus and has awesome flexible zoom and pan functionality. It's small, but very detailed and readable. I can take it to shore... for all sorts of handy uses. It does not support nav features.. but has a heading/course line and you can choose the "density" of data (clutter) as well. Rather than use a waypoint.... I use the heading line w/ the AP to steer to where I want to go... even when the marker is not visible. It sits in a little cradle under the dodger.

I've recently added B&G Z7 touch which I picked up for a good price. The touch screen features mimic the IQue's for zoom and pan. It has more bells and whistles such as waypoints and can support data inputs like radar and AIS. The latter will be added next summer. The radar is a hardware upgrade and very spendy. The T7 is portable, selof contained GPS antenna and sits in a simple inexpensive mount which drops into a very little used winch under the port side of the companionway under the dodger. It can swivel so I can see it from sitting in the companionway, feet dangling or from sitting in the forward port side on the coaming with visibility over the dodger.

Obviously this chartplotter solution works for my way of sailing, my boat and my budget... and I don't have to deal with holes in the boat.... aside from a cable access for future data. So now I rarely use the screen on the below decks MFD... except to enter a waypoint so it can repeat to the cockpit displays. No GPS will be steering my boat.... I do dat... with Alison's help after I consult the "screen".
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Old 18-02-2016, 04:53   #57
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

Outside at the helm. Get a product where you can hook up a tablet that you can then use inside.

We use B&G with GoFree outside and an iPad inside. Works great.
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Old 18-02-2016, 05:42   #58
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

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Originally Posted by kas_1611 View Post
No one has mentioned that regardless of where you mount your chartplotter, GPS enabled tablet or other electronic aid to navigation they all have the same limitation.

They are only as reliable as the base charts you are using and the quality of your GPS fix.

Even the Admiralty gets it wrong from time to time (leading lights guiding sailors over a sandbank rather than passed it for example) and I have frequently anchored happily in the middle of a bay only to find the chartplotter telling me I am 50m ashore!!! Probably due to a chart reproduction/digitisation error and a GPS shift.

Therefore anyone who sails with their head buried in the chartplotter or solely relying on the chartplotter is a statistic waiting to happen. Yes it is very easy to follow the icon moving over the chart on screen, especially when coming into a new harbour and modern chartplotters have a heap of additional information available to the skipper or navigator to aid pilotage but the Mk1 Eyeball combined with the v1.0 Brain is still the best navigation tool we have.

Modern technology is great and does mean we no longer have to do constant 3 point fixes, estimated positions, dead reckoning etc but they should never be relied on totally. They are still an "Aid to Navigation" regardless of if they are at the helm (my preferred position) or at the chart table down below.

Keiron
This thread is about Where to Put It, not about How to Use It, which is a completely different subject.

Navigation and pilotage are not functions which can be fulfilled by just buying a chart plotter and switching it on. There is a whole lot more to it, and it takes some real effort, applied over some years, to learn enough to gain basic competence. But I suspect everyone on here knows that.

Having a chart plotter at the helm, used with the requisite skill of course, enormously improves pilotage, because the system will plot your position in real time and display it on a chart, allowing you to spent all the time you would spend doing the plots in another way, looking around, recognizing lights, marks and landmarks, and orienting yourself. And instead of a plot every period of time, it's done continuously, greatly reducing the likely error.

The fact that electronic charts have limitations of accuracy takes nothing away from these advantages at all. Paper charts are subject to the very same limits, and are far less likely to be up to date. The fact that electronic chart plotting is NOT a magic bullet, which will allow even an idiot to do perfect pilotage without any effort, is really quite irrelevant. "Not a magic bullet" does not mean that's it's not incredibly useful, with extreme benefits to the quality of pilotage, when used in the right hands.

And that's the point of view from a person who still uses paper (and quasi-paper -- raster charts on a large high res display) for passage planning, and who always keeps a hand bearing compass in the cockpit for a quick non-electronic fix.
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Old 18-02-2016, 05:50   #59
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

Tablets and smart phones take one hand to hold and another to USE and that leaves one with no more hands to hold on or to steer. These portable hand held devices are only sensible in the most benign weather conditions.
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Old 18-02-2016, 06:04   #60
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Re: Chartplotter inside or outside

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Originally Posted by Pizzazz View Post
................... At night you will be sleeping down below while the autopilot does the work. ...........
Do people actually do this? Nobody is keeping watch?

It seems pretty unsafe to me and illegal as well.


To the OP, put the chart plotter where you can see and operate it while operating the boat. You can get two and network them if you really wand another one inside.
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