Old as Dirt!
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Tampa Bay Area
Thanked 152 Times in 144 Posts
Rep Power: 9
I'm thinking I'll bite the bullet this year and replace my failing wheel pilot.
Looking for suggestions for a good place to do the install and recommendations on what to install as well.
The Raymarine X5 is out. I've just read too much negative press on it and my boat is right on the edge of the recommended displacement even if they got good press. I'm guessing it would have to be a below deck model if I go Raymarine.
Simrad seems to have some interesting products also.
I'm not really looking to interface to anything I would just like a pilot to help mainly when motoring but as an extra crew when short handed sailing as well. Its a shame the X5 doesn't seem to be nearly as robust as the units that came before it. You would think there would be a huge market for a simple to install wheel pilot that would handle mid sized boats.
While not inexpensive, the Simrad AP24 coupled with the HLD 2000L is an unbeatable combination and would be perfect for your boat. We have the earlier version of that system and it has worked faultlessly for 10+ years in bad weather/heavy seas as well as good. While we use it motoring, it's real advantage is under sail as it allows one person to stand a watch, handle sail trim et al without difficulty.
If you are close enough A&B Marine at Bert Jabins Yard in Back Creek, Annapolis, did some work for us when we were in the area and proved very reliable.
"It is not so much for its beauty that the sea makes a claim upon men's hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air, that emanation from the waves, that so wonderfully renews a weary spirit."