Although I'm a tech-head through most of life, on the boat, I try to stay away from it mostly. I find water and electronics don't mix. My luxuries, or exceptions, are my handheld GPS (no maps) which I wouldn't want to live without (particularly this past summer off the rocky coast near Tobermory), VHF and windex.
I enjoy navigating by paper, and that won't change. During this last summer's trip, I would sit down in the morning and create the list of my waypoints on paper then transfer them into the GPS... Have you tried to do that on a handheld? You must use a rocker switch to scroll through every digit. It takes FOREVER.
Over the winter, I have been playing with OpenCPN and have plotted several "trips" that I may take this summer. Eventually, I'll buy the paper maps for the trip I'll actually take but I dread having to input the the waypoints into the Garmin 76 ... I'm hoping OpenCPN can help me there. I've looked in several forums on the subject and IIRC, the G76 is supposed to allow you to input waypoints, but not full routes... Since I don't have the appropriate Serial-USB cable for the device, I have not been able to test it, but within the software, I don't see the option to send even the waypoints. I was hoping others here had done it, saving me experimentation time. I'll get back to googling once I have the cable (and hopefully the new GPS)
My ideal scenario would be a command line s.cript that I could use to input waypoints directly from keyboard... perhaps I'll write something myself if it doesn't exist.
Last edited by JordanH; 02-08-2012 at 04:50 PM.
Reason: Who knew "s.cript" was a dirty word??