Cruisers & Sailing Forums (
-   General Sailing Forum (
-   -   Chart plotter (

Harro 04-04-2017 15:47

Chart plotter
I'm having a new Chart Plotter installed today. I'm new to cruising and unsure where to have it mounted. At the helm or at the nav station.
Your input is appreciated.

stevenit 04-04-2017 15:56

Re: Chart plotter
If you haven't a repeater, and you are mainly single hand, better at the helm.

Harro 04-04-2017 16:03

Re: Chart plotter
Thank you. I can't afford a repeater so I will mount the chatplotter at the helm and use my tablet at the nav station ?

Sandero 04-04-2017 16:03

Re: Chart plotter
I don't stand at the helm because I use an AP... A helm plotter would only work if I and driving from the helm. I have a plotter mounted on the coach roof under the dodger where I sit (out of sun and rain) where I can reach the AP controls.

I have a permanent mount plotter at the nav station which I rarely actually spend much eyeball time with.

Neptune's Gear 04-04-2017 16:24

Re: Chart plotter
+1 for at the helm. Then it's in front of you when you are steering because you need too - coastal, harbor entrances, traffic etc. Once you've had one at the helm, you wont go back! Two is better, or course, but one at the helm with wifi to a tablet below is good too.

Paul L 04-04-2017 16:25

Re: Chart plotter
I'm with Sandero. If you are making passages then put the chart plotter where you do your watch. For me that's under the dodger beside the companionway.

Hobie_ind 04-04-2017 16:40

Re: Chart plotter

Originally Posted by Paul L (Post 2364146)
I'm with Sandero. If you are making passages then put the chart plotter where you do your watch. For me that's under the dodger beside the companionway.

Hey.... Isn't that where some builders put the helm station? Really eliminates the debate on where to put the chartplotter. I loved the helm on our Amel ;-)

Dr. D 04-04-2017 16:48

Re: Chart plotter
Chart plotter at helm and iPad linked to it at the nav station. It works!

Suijin 04-04-2017 16:59

Re: Chart plotter
It really depends on how and where you use the boat. If you're doing any sort of passages, then Sandero is right, under the dodger can be much better. If you're mostly day sailing or taking weekend cruises then at the helm might be preferable.

If you have a tablet then in many respects it does not matter where you put the chart plotter as you can take the tablet with you wherever you go on the boat.

Paul L 04-04-2017 17:07

Re: Chart plotter

Originally Posted by Hobie_ind (Post 2364158)
Hey.... Isn't that where some builders put the helm station? Really eliminates the debate on where to put the chartplotter. I loved the helm on our Amel ;-)

Those French are always thinking ahead.

Pizzazz 04-04-2017 17:27

Re: Chart plotter
It depends as others have said. When leaving it entering port you NEED the chartplotter at the helm, especially at night or in an unknown harbor. This allows zooming in/out, responding to AIS alarms, etc. When under autopilot you are better off with the chartplotter under the dodger or below. If you do long passages and sail without a watch, you need the AIS/radar information below. Your best bet is at the helm but mounted so that it can turn 360 degrees. This covers the entire cockpit and you can even look at it from the cabin.

I do not like it under the dodger because it is always to the side (difficult to operate), far from the helm (need a big display and can't reach the buttons).

nematon785 04-04-2017 19:26

Re: Chart plotter
One option if your nav station is at the companionway, you can mount on an articulating arm on the companionway bulkhead inside, available at nav station, swings into companionway for use at the helm. Seems like the worst of both worlds, and blocks the companion way for passengers when using at the helm. However it would be in a weather and sun protected location, and easy to stow locked up when leaving the boat at the marina, as well as almost but not really usable in either location...

I'd just put mine at the helm.

Sandero 05-04-2017 03:44

Re: Chart plotter
This decision is driven by the architecture of your boat, how you sail... and your budget.

In my case which is probably somewhat unique.... I only use the helm and manually steer to actually make a final approach to a dock or a mooring. I use the AP now for all other steering....except in a crowded situation where I have to dodge boats and dinks. I need a faster helm response.

My AP controls which is an Alpha 300 is a rotary dial... and I simply turn it like a helm... clockwise to turn to stbd and counter clockwise to turn to port. Tiny turns... a few degrees only makes a slight course change. I don't LOOK at the AP... I look at the environment.. just as I don't look at the helm when I manually steer.

My cockpit plotter went from a small phone sized one to a B&G Z7 which I mount in a winch on the the coach roof under the dodger. I can swing it around to view from stbd or poet or when I sit in the companionway on the bridge deck. I remove it when not sailing. It's powered via a cig plug and has a built in antenna and no interface to radar or AIS or transducers... just a plotter for positional information... depths, buoys and so forth.

A helm location would be a waste of money. When I steer I want to look around and not at a screen below me. If I do steer and want to view a chart... I can use my smart phone running navionics.

As someone who has cruised thousands of miles... standing at the helm is just not done very much. I don't race either and short hand sail.... so I rely on the AP so I can trim and so forth. I have no bimini (yet) and don't want to roast in the sun.... get sprayed or rained on... so sitting forward under the protection of the dodger is my place. I can look forward thrugh the dodger or pop my head up to see over it in all forward directions... AND still steer with the AP.

barnakiel 05-04-2017 04:43

Re: Chart plotter
I keep our chartplotter in the pocket. Quite easy when your screen is about 5 inches.


johnyhask 06-04-2017 00:45

Re: Chart plotter
Got an offer in on a boat but not bought yet. Chartplotter and autopilot need upgrading. Just a thought. Does the wifi ipad interactivity allow you to steer from the iPad?

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 17:04.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.