Same here, but it was a Vesper XB8000 and something like 5 or 6 years ago. Installed the thing, configured with the radio (hardwired) and computer/tablet/phone (built-in wifi) and never had to do anything more. Working without a hiccupI installed a Vesper Marine XB-6000 2 years ago. It's been rock solid, I am very happy with it.
Can’t agree with this at all. Radar is more important. There never will be a mandate for recreational vessels requiring them to have AIS....thereforeI follow friends on marine traffic. Sometimes do this on the boat so have the transceiver running at the same time. This occurs on the occasions we have internet (so we’re coastal). Have found marine traffic is good but extraordinarily slow. Will often not update in a useful period of time when you’re concerned about a intercept or collision avoidance. Believe it is NOT meant to be used as a navigational aid.
In busy areas (New York harbor, chessie near military and such) have had military and commercial traffic call me on 16,9,13). The call is usually a curtesy call or to state intentions. But these calls are useful and clearly occur because I was identified by my transmitting AIS.
Similarly when offshore transmitting is very important. Ships tend to pick up on your AIS not radar and definitely not visual.
At this point of time think having a transceiver is more important to safety than a chart plotter (pad will serve) or radar. Think everyone in anything bigger than a dinghy should get one.
I wouldn't be so sure of that. Many countries do require AIS, and the US is presently considering requiring AIS for recreational vessels 65'+. It could be only a matter of time before the US requires all recreational vessels (or ones, say 30'+) to be so equipped.There never will be a mandate for recreational vessels requiring them to have AIS....therefore
I’m not advocating Marine Traffic as the refresh rates are very long.I wouldn't be so sure of that. Many countries do require AIS, and the US is presently considering requiring AIS for recreational vessels 65'+. It could be only a matter of time before the US requires all recreational vessels (or ones, say 30'+) to be so equipped.
If I had to bet, I'd bet on it happening.
I haven't used MarineTraffic in real-time much, but do know when I am testing our AIS it usually takes 1-6hrs for us to show up on it. We have had friends tell us they see us in one place, when we had left there hours ago. It doesn't seem safe to rely on it for real-time navigation - particularly when the whole purpose of AIS requires real-time updates.
AIS transponders used to be rare in our travels. Now it is rare to find a boat without one. Of course, the small runabouts and such will not have them, so AIS may be less important in more protected areas where these boats roam. But since they are generally running 20-30kts, even radar doesn't help a sailboat much with avoiding them.
I think the price of basic AIS transponders has fallen as low as they are ever going to be. This is the price-floor for basic models, and money will just add features from there.
It happened the same way with AIS receive-only, where the prices dropped to a certain level and then stayed there (or even rose a bit). For example, I paid $170 for a SR161 receiver 12yrs ago. I just looked and it is still a current product being sold for $220 now. Of course, I just sold it for $40, so good deals can be had used because many people are now upgrading to transceivers.
But the cost differential between receive-only and a transceiver is so small now that that money buys one a big step-up in functionality and usefulness.
I was attempting to address several post points in my post, and the marinetraffic point wasn't in response to anything you wrote.I’m not advocating Marine Traffic as the refresh rates are very long.
I think asking a smaller sailboat or even medium size like us to purchase an AISB at around $700-$800 will be the killer.
A valid point was made that the vast majority of weekend warrior do not have AIS transponders. So having AIS of any type provides little utility outside larger commercial ships.But AIS has it hands down for the vast majority of weekend warriors. Put a cursor on the target and click. Everything you want to know is right there.