Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
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One quick comment about bundling the instruments at the wheel, this location usually works reasonably well for motoring such as you would be doing in the ICW, but on most boats this is miserable setup when sailing.
I generally prefer to mount the knotmeter, digital compass (or regular compass) and depthsounder forward on a bulkead or over the companionway. In that position you move your head around less as you can look at where you are going and back at the instruments by only moving your eyes up and down rather than looking down at the binacle.
That all works well with paper charts as well. On the other hand, chartplotting GPS''s, which are the bee''s knees for what you are proposing, unfortunately seem to want to be mounted closer to the helmsperson. I saw a neat installation with the binacle mounted chartplotter that swiveled to face the helmperson on center or on either tack that was a pretty nice setup.