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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Have a lowrance elite 5 gold. Tartan 30. Figure ofcourse dash mount but just looking for any pointers, hints, hindsight, etc... that I might get before hooking up. Do I need to hook it up to an always hot connection as someone told me?
 

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No, you don't need to hook it up to an always hot connection. It is better to have the ability to switch off power to it. I have all of my instruments on a circuit labeled "Electronics".

Is your boat tiller or wheel?

A simple solution that doesn't modify the boat one bit is to make a board that slips into the companionway and holds the plotter and other electronics. That way it is stored inboard when you don't need it, and is easily visible from the boat.
 

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I would recommend that you install the plotter where you can easily see and reach it from the helm.
I have seen them in the companionway, in the forward part of the cockpit, on the pedestal and lately, low down, in between the two helms, (quite unviewable and unreachable from either helm, unless you are sitting on the cockpit floor).
We absolutely love having ours close at hand, on the pedestal, to make adjustments, change scales and lighten or darken the screen, for instance. In a squall, with the wind howling around you, the rain pelting you like buckshot, it is so nice to have that screen right there, close at hand, easily viewed and it is comforting to know your course, speed and location, especially when you can't see 6 feet in front of you.
 

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My "electronics" breaker powers up one of these :

ST Blade Fuse Block - 6 Circuits with Negative Bus and Cover - Blue Sea Systems

Then the individual items have a smaller fuse, each : chartplotter, NMEA 2000 network, MFD, etc. I still have some room for expansion, too.

Makes for much neater wiring than running each item back to the breaker box, separately.

Plus, if one device develops a fault, it won't take out everything.
 

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Your Lowrance is about the size of my Garmin 441. I used an Edson pedestal Mount, it's wasn't cheap but it's extremely solid and well made. Worth every penny; and the plotter is right there. I agree with Capta you can't beat the convenience.

For wiring, I have a breaker labeled Nav/Comm on the panel. It powers up the plotter, VHF and NMEA 2000 backbone (and devices).

 

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My "electronics" breaker powers up one of these :

ST Blade Fuse Block - 6 Circuits with Negative Bus and Cover - Blue Sea Systems

Then the individual items have a smaller fuse, each : chartplotter, NMEA 2000 network, MFD, etc. I still have some room for expansion, too.

Makes for much neater wiring than running each item back to the breaker box, separately.

Plus, if one device develops a fault, it won't take out everything.
This is important, because as you add more and more electronics to your circuit the breaker must increase in size. Some of these puppies have really small wires, and if you've upped the circuit breaker to cover all the items it powers, you could still have a fire.

MedSailor
 

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PS, I have NMEA 0183 connections in and out to the plotter (GPS signal to VHF, AIS signal to plotter) so I found the simplest thing is to break out the entire signal cable that comes with the plotter, connected to a screw terminal block, rather than messing about soldering wires together.

This has some advantages :

It took a few goes to connect things so that it worked, so screw terminals help with that.

You have easy future expansion.

I have seen the terminal block mounted inside a waterproof box, which I didn't do, but would next time, as the small wires in the signal cable are delicate.
 

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I mounted my Lowrance Elite 5 on the bulkhead of my Oday 23. The only spare circuit on my fuse board was non-functioning, so I connected it directly to the battery (with an independent fuse circuit, natch). I can't shut the power off to it, but that's ok because I take it off the mount and store it inside whenever I leave the boat.

The location is ok and the view is good for the helmsman, but if someone is sitting next to the bulkhead, then the view of the screen is blocked. If I hadn't had to drill out a 1" hole in the bulkhead to mount it, I would seriously consider remounting it on a swing arm.
 

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Well it's clear that there are lots of ways to wire it, but I prefer to follow best practice and ABYC rules.

Those best practices are :

Not to run wires directly to the battery.
Use at least 16 gauge tinned cable, preferably boat cable with an outer sheath.
The device should be connected to a re-settable breaker, not a fuse, sized to protect the wiring.
A fuse inline, as well, is acceptable and desirable.

Older boats weren't built with bad wiring, they get there one bodge at a time.
 

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I have a breaker/switch marked 'Navigation' which powers up the two GPS's on the boat. (The one at the nav station reads through the sailing instruments.) The other is a chart plotter in the cockpit. The power from that circuit breaker goes to a small bus bar with both positive and negative sides. The + and _ from the individual instruments are wired to one terminal on each of the bus bars. There is an appropriately sized inline fuse on each instrument between the bus bar and the instrument.

As to the cockpit mounting, I don't know whether the O.P. has a wheel or not, but I mounted my chartplotter on a swiveling base on the base on the binacle. I designed and made my own with a little help from Maritime Plastics in Annapolis. Here are some pictures:

<a href="http://s157.photobucket.com/user/Jeff_Halpern/media/E-GPSRotoMountwGPSinplace2_zpsfa96d46c.jpg.html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i157.photobucket.com/albums/t57/Jeff_Halpern/E-GPSRotoMountwGPSinplace2_zpsfa96d46c.jpg" border="0" alt=" photo E-GPSRotoMountwGPSinplace2_zpsfa96d46c.jpg"/></a>

<a href="http://s157.photobucket.com/user/Jeff_Halpern/media/E-GPSRotoMountDetailw-oGPSinplace_zps0761c40e.jpg.html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i157.photobucket.com/albums/t57/Jeff_Halpern/E-GPSRotoMountDetailw-oGPSinplace_zps0761c40e.jpg" border="0" alt=" photo E-GPSRotoMountDetailw-oGPSinplace_zps0761c40e.jpg"/></a>

<a href="http://s157.photobucket.com/user/Jeff_Halpern/media/E-GPSRotoMountfrmbelow2_zps8e7a5a7b.jpg.html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i157.photobucket.com/albums/t57/Jeff_Halpern/E-GPSRotoMountfrmbelow2_zps8e7a5a7b.jpg" border="0" alt=" photo E-GPSRotoMountfrmbelow2_zps8e7a5a7b.jpg"/></a>

I tend to steer undersail from abeam of the wheel so that I can see up the slot. This allows me to rotate the chart plotter so that I can see it from either side or from aft of the wheel. I remove the chart plotter from its bracket and stow it below. In the picture from below you can see the tightening handle (which is chiseled out for the nut), which I adjusted once when I built the bracket and installed it and have not touched it since. The shape of the two components allows the wire to swivel more than 180 degrees.

Jeff
 

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Well it's clear that there are lots of ways to wire it, but I prefer to follow best practice and ABYC rules.

Those best practices are :

Not to run wires directly to the battery.
Use at least 16 gauge tinned cable, preferably boat cable with an outer sheath.
The device should be connected to a re-settable breaker, not a fuse, sized to protect the wiring.
A fuse inline, as well, is acceptable and desirable.

Older boats weren't built with bad wiring, they get there one bodge at a time.
While I prefer breakers there is nothing wrong with a fused panel instead. ABYC certainly has no issue with fuses.

"Older boats weren't built with bad wiring..." I don't think you have seen enough old boats - quite a few were badly wired.
 

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Mark SF certainly describes the best way . However on my set up and another guys , we take the whole thing off when were done(so it's not hot) . The way I did the wiring on mine is 12 v to a bus bar then to the fuse then to the receptacle(plug)on the panel . And I plug the unit into the panel plug . Do you think it would be necessary to go from the bus bar and fuse then to a Cole Hersy trip switch then to the panel ? I'll answer that myself , yes . Thanks, MarkSF for making me do it the right way .
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Well I had the thing for two months. Decided today was the day to do the install. I get all my stuff together and go out get all ready to cut a hole and wait. The unit from the dumb ass's at Lowrance does not include the flush mount kit. That is sold separately and ofcourse is not stocked by any local marine outfits. Also, I better make sure I spring for that $25 cover that is needed as well (ofcourse that will need to be ordered as well). West Marine says we can order it for you. I said well I can order it myself, in fact anyone with a computer or mail service can as well. Like they are somehow the only ones who can order the product. How lame is that. Buy our **** but then wait a few more weeks and spend another $70 to get what you need to actually install it. Not real happy and will make sure I think long and hard about ever using a product from them again. Also, the Tartan 30 is a tiller steer.
 
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