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post #14 of Old 03-14-2008
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We have the Raymarine C120 with a 4kw radar. We love it. Prior to this we were Garmin devotees, and there certainly is nothing wrong with Garmin. The Raymarine is very eash to use, and is very intuitive. Plus, having the radar and plotter integrated is a HUGE plus. I know others disagree and have expressed the view that integrated systems give you risk of knocking out multiple systems with one failure, but overlaying the radar, or even splitting your screen, really makes navigating a snap. I suspect I'll never go without this type of setup again (subject to further technological advances of course).

On the boat, I think condition and equipment is more important than brand for a coastal trip like the one you're contemplating. Many "lesser" builds are less suitable in large part because over time portions flex, rigging is not sufficiently stout, ports/hatches leak excessively, deck leaks due to poor bedding has caused delamination/rot of the deck coring, compression post failure, etc. If your boat is well maintained, the rig is in good shape, through hulls in good condition, rudder and rudder bearings, steering, etc. in good condition, you should be fine. Likewise, it's more important that you sail smart. The best built boat will have trouble if you go around Cape Hatteras in the wrong weather, but a Sunfish can make it in the right conditions.

Dan Goldberg

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