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post #11 of 33 Old 11-25-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

All the major brand ones work well. The main differences are how easy/difficult they are to navigate the menus.
Best thing you can do is go to a West Marine where they have them all set up, and play with each one, going through the menus.
On my last boat I did that and ended up with a Garmin. My current boat came with a beautiful Raymarine, but I don't care for the menu system on it as much.
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post #12 of 33 Old 11-25-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

I use a Lowrance HDS-7, which also displays my Lowrance 3G radar and Lowrance AIS VFH radio as chart overlays. It also displays the depth very accurately using a hockey puck transducer that shoots through a very thick hull, battery voltage, time, lat/lon, SOG, and I can split the screen to display navigation information while still providing an excellent chart view.

There are too many locations where I do not have cellular connection to use my smart phone for anything this important.

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post #13 of 33 Old 11-25-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

Originally Posted by jhlnh View Post
...Any recommendations?
Have you considered used? You can get a lot of bang for your <$700 bucks on eBay. I bought a Furuno MFD8 store display model on eBay at a 50% discount.

eBay - Used Chasrtplotters
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post #14 of 33 Old 11-25-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

Does a newish Garmin Chartplotter talk to older Autohelm instruments?
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post #15 of 33 Old 11-25-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

Much of this depends upon the model. Most of the handhelds will not, while he vast majority of the console mounts will.

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post #16 of 33 Old 11-26-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

Can anyone tell me good or bad on the Lowrance hook9 ??can,t seem to find any info ... cabellas in edmtn has it sale listed at 599.00 ( list 1400 ish)... Ralph

Northern Alberta. "85" C/L 16. ,"85"S2 7.9 under repair.
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post #17 of 33 Old 11-26-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

Originally Posted by SanderO View Post
I have been reluctant to go the route of touch screen. However I do need to replace my aging Ray C80 below decks. I have a B&G T7 in the cockpit... but I find the interface clumsy (touch aspect)... I use it basically to see where I am on a chart while in the cockpit... zoom in and out... but no waypoints or interfaces.

My below decks MFD is the one I program with a waypoint and it repeats data to the cockpit displays (NMEA183) which is sort of useful for navigation.... CTW, TTG, SOG, COG and so forth. Radar is below decks and that's not optimal. But the T7 is "portable" and set up by simply plugging in its power chord into a cockpit dash cig plug12v outlet.

If the interface for entering a waypoint and easily getting at them (again) once they are used I could consider a touch screen technology... and May be able to eventually port the radar into to the T7.... if it's via N2K system... not a fat radar cable... or even better... wifi.

Any comments or suggestions?
IMHO, when the going gets rough and you are rocking and rolling, you really want your electronics at the helm to be bolted down and you donít need the added challenge of trying to keep a steady hand on a touch screen MFD. I carrry an iPad with Garmin Bluechart as a tertiary backup, but hope I never have to use it at the helm under snotty conditions.
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post #18 of 33 Old 11-26-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

We have been underway for 10 years and run RayMarine and it has been great. We are not fans of touch screen as at times when we need to zoom in I far to busy to focus on it and just a reach and click takes me in on the zoom - example in '16 we were in the Black Sea and had a bit of a blow hit us with big short steep seas on a very close interval and a lot of wind on our nose - we were just a few miles from safe harbor behind a breakwater but it's entrance was facing the seas but there was a lot rocks piled outside the entrance to break the seas - so I had to go directly at the rocks and turn across the winds and seas that I knew would lift and take us sideways toward the end of the breakwater - I needed to keep the plotter out so I could judge the distance I was from both rocks and breakwater and once I decided to make the turn we did get picked up and taken sideways before I got her all the way around and once around we were surfing into an unknown harbor at 8k+ and I needed to zoom in a quick punch and I had what I needed as my concentration was trying to steer the boat in and away from the breakwater on one side and land and rocks on the other -

We do fish but do not have the necessary transducer to see fish and could care less -

As a backup we have been running OpenCPN for 10 years and actually do use it on occasion just because -

Of course a lot depends on where you are going to cruise and sail -

Just our thoughts and opinion
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post #19 of 33 Old 11-26-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

The T7 is mounted in a winch under the dodger and it's very secure except in a roll. It has a rotary dial which I believe can zoom or button presses... can't recall actually. I don't usually get caught in severely challenging land falls as Chuck describes... But sailing in Maine at night, with fog approaches that level of uncertainty. I rarely drive from the helm... but of course with nasty short steep waves I would do better than the AP... But I don't think I would be looking at a plotter screen to thread the needle in those conditions. Anything is possible of course.

I do not have a place for and so fixed mount in the cockpit is not happening. The present location works great... and would support a larger screen.. but sitting right next to it... it works perfectly well.

BTW a most useful feature is the course / heading line which shows where the boat is going assuming no current change. In the attached I was headed for Port Jef and simply tweak the AP to get the course/heading line to intersect the entry buoy. I can pretty much navigate like this without bothering to enter a way point. That simply generates numbers... course to waypoint, distance to waypoint and time to go to waypoint.
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B&G T7.jpg  

pay attention... someone's life depends on it

Last edited by SanderO; 11-26-2017 at 06:22 AM.
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post #20 of 33 Old 11-26-2017
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Re: Chartplotters for sailing

For anyone thinking about going the iPad route but concerned about cell range or built-in GPS accuracy, know that for under $100 you can purchase a GPS 'puck' that bluetooth tethers to tablet or phone and provides excellent GPS capability regardless of cell service availability. We've occasionally uses our 'Bad Elf' (mostly backpacking remote areas, but sometimes sailing) and it works great.

s/v Miracle
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