SailNet Community banner
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
‘77 Pearson 10m
Joined
·
28 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a new old boat (77 Pearson 10m) which only has depth, wind, and boat speed (not COG) instruments, and my iPhone has Navionics. That said, I’m interested in a plotter, but the options available are dizzying. Don’t need a fish finder but a bottom sonar has its appeal in the Chesapeake. Would like to integrate my Raymarine instruments, but I’m not sure if that pins me down to that brand. I’d like to hear opinions and options. No rush, I have plenty of starter projects way more important that the plotter.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25,129 Posts
Would like to integrate my Raymarine instruments
How old are these. Could be more complicated to integrate old stuff that communicated differently. However, I believe it can be done. Whether it's worth added expense of mix and match, converters, etc, for stuff that might die from old age anyway, is something to think about.

Re-doing navigation electronics can be expensive and I've bit that bullet more than once. Each time, after significant wait time and failures. I've always had great joy being on the boat and using the modern stuff and immediately forgot what it cost.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,253 Posts
Today its hard to find a chartplotter that isn't also a fishfinder. And almost all will include a network (N2K) connection. Older speed/depth/wind instruments may not have network connections. Only you can decide how important that function is to you.
 

·
Registered
‘77 Pearson 10m
Joined
·
28 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
How old are these. Could be more complicated to integrate old stuff that communicated differently. However, I believe it can be done. Whether it's worth added expense of mix and match, converters, etc, for stuff that might die from old age anyway, is something to think about.

Re-doing navigation electronics can be expensive and I've bit that bullet more than once. Each time, after significant wait time and failures. I've always had great joy being on the boat and using the modern stuff and immediately forgot what it cost.
They are the ST 60 + lineup that use NMEA to communicate with non Raymarine instruments and SeaTalk to connect other ST60+ instruments/display.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,507 Posts
Hello,

The big names for marine electronics and especially chart plotters, are
Navico - they own B&G, Simard, and Lowrance
Raymarine
Garmin

B&G is very popular with sailors and they brag about having sailing specific features. The reality is that all of the units from all of the companies are more alike than they are different. If you planned on doing high end racing it would be different but for most people any plotter available today will have more features than you will ever use.

Some important things to think about:
-How big a plotter do you want? The smallest practical size is 5" and there are 12" unit out there too. Generally the bigger the screen the better, but prices increase rapidly as you get a larger screen, and, most importantly, you need to mount it somewhere.
-Where are you going to mount it? IMO the plotter should be within easy reach / easy viewing of the helm. To me it makes little sense to mount a nice plotter down below where no one can use it. The close to the helmsman, the better
-If you're going to buy an entire system (plotter, autopilot, instruments, radar, ais, etc) it is best to stay with the same manufacturer. If you are only going to buy one component then it really doesn't matter.
-Some nice to have features include the ability to connect your phone or tablet to the plotter. You can either share data / routes / tracks, etc between the two, or mirror the plotter display on the phone so you can be down below, or on the bow and still have access to the plotter.
-Fishfinders ARE useful. Not for finding fish but for being to see what the bottom is like. This is helpful during anchoring, and transiting shallow areas. Note that you need a compatible SONAR transducer for this. The typical depth transducer will not work. You don't have to spend lots of $ for the transducers, there are $100 units out there that work fine. You don't need to see the bottom in 200' of water, just when it's less than 20'
-How are you going to mount it? Some units come with a basic bracket. Other people want to use a nice 'Navpod' type mount. Those look and work great but are expensive.

Barry
 

·
Registered
Contest 36s
Joined
·
7,135 Posts
Hello,

The big names for marine electronics and especially chart plotters, are
Navico - they own B&G, Simard, and Lowrance
Raymarine
Garmin

B&G is very popular with sailors and they brag about having sailing specific features. The reality is that all of the units from all of the companies are more alike than they are different. If you planned on doing high end racing it would be different but for most people any plotter available today will have more features than you will ever use.

Some important things to think about:
-How big a plotter do you want? The smallest practical size is 5" and there are 12" unit out there too. Generally the bigger the screen the better, but prices increase rapidly as you get a larger screen, and, most importantly, you need to mount it somewhere.
-Where are you going to mount it? IMO the plotter should be within easy reach / easy viewing of the helm. To me it makes little sense to mount a nice plotter down below where no one can use it. The close to the helmsman, the better
-If you're going to buy an entire system (plotter, autopilot, instruments, radar, ais, etc) it is best to stay with the same manufacturer. If you are only going to buy one component then it really doesn't matter.
-Some nice to have features include the ability to connect your phone or tablet to the plotter. You can either share data / routes / tracks, etc between the two, or mirror the plotter display on the phone so you can be down below, or on the bow and still have access to the plotter.
-Fishfinders ARE useful. Not for finding fish but for being to see what the bottom is like. This is helpful during anchoring, and transiting shallow areas. Note that you need a compatible SONAR transducer for this. The typical depth transducer will not work. You don't have to spend lots of $ for the transducers, there are $100 units out there that work fine. You don't need to see the bottom in 200' of water, just when it's less than 20'
-How are you going to mount it? Some units come with a basic bracket. Other people want to use a nice 'Navpod' type mount. Those look and work great but are expensive.

Barry
I have a different approach because I sail differently.
Transducers produce data which is basically numeric... except wind...angles which can be either digital or analog.
I don't "drive" from the helm but rather from forward in the cockpit...unless docking or anchoring... so my engine controls are accessible from the forward end of the cockpit... and the throttle is at the helm... also accessible from forward of the helm.
I find a plotter display where I am mostly is important that that happens to be close to the companionway on the aft end of the coach roof under the dodger.
My instrument data is displayed on the dash over the companionway.
Nowadays Navionics on the smartphone is a great way to see the chart from wherever you are on the boat. You can get all sorts of mounts for the binnacle or coach roof.
I DO have a plotter below where I "comfortably" can enter a way point or plan the route.. which sends the data to the cockpit "repeaters". So recently I added a stand alone plotter.

Vehicle Gadget Air travel Display device Electronic device

I can enter the waypoint into the cockpit plotter... or just refer to the instruments for data from the below deck plotter. This system evolved over time.
I intended to do an N2K upgrade... but as I am selling the boat I will leave that to the next owner.... who may want something different.
Product Rectangle Slope Font Parallel
 

·
Registered
2008 Jeanneau 39i S/V Grace
Joined
·
806 Posts
I have the ST60 instruments as well. They are probably NMEA 0183 and you'll need to convert to N2k to add them to a recent plotter. I did so with the Axiom 9+ and it works great, but the Axiom's wifi is weak, so put it where it'll reach your handheld devices (iPhone, iPad). I would guess the effective range is roughly 12'.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,045 Posts
West Marine is having a sale starting 11/19 on a Raymarine Axiom 9 with a free RV-100 transducer included for $799. I've heard people have had luck epoxying these transducers to the inside of their hulls rather than transom mounting. Otherwise the transducer can be sold for about $250-300 on eBay and you'd end up with a 9 inch plotter for about $499. That's not much money for that much screen real estate. Most chartplotters that cheap aren't 9 inches and either don't come with charts and/or aren't radar compatible. Radar compatibility is nice to have if you ever want it in the future.

I believe the ST60s would require a black box Sea Talk converter to interface with the Axiom. But if the ST60 system has working displays in good locations, interfacing may not be that much of a priority. I've never bothered to interface my old but working depth/wind/speed to my chartplotter and don't feel like I'm missing much.

I have no affiliation with West Marine or Raymarine, I just saw this deal and thought it might be attractive for the OP and others.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
8,370 Posts
There is another, cheaper option....

A laptop with OpenCpn.
Sure no depth gauge.

The reason I mention this is the boat is a 1977 Pearson 10m. There's 2 on Yacht world asking US$14,000
So the transaction value is probably about $10k
One might well be over-capitalising by putting $3-4,000 into it. Especially if it's an interim or starter boat.

Stealing your children's laptop, erasing Doom and putting on OpenCpn for free could be an alternative.

Mark
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,122 Posts
OpenCPN is great, but the OP indicated he wanted something more like a fixed plotter on the helm. Maybe for weatherproofness? Otherwise, his current phone with Navionics would be similar to a computer with OCPN, only more portable.

To the OP: perhaps you could expand on what you would like a plotter to accomplish that your iphone with navionics doesn't?

Mark
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
I have ST60 instruments, same as the OP, and can confirm that they feature NMEA2000, but via SeaTalk - the old Raymarine 3-pin proprietary system.
But a simple connector unit allows them to "talk" to any other units via NMEA2000
My system has ST60 wind, depth and speed, with a p70 Autopilot and a Garmin chart plotter. All communicate with each other
So - you can choose any chartplotter brand you like
I think that the only reason to stick wtih one brand is for radar. - radomes and chartplotters need to be matched (but I may be wrong!)
 

·
Registered
‘77 Pearson 10m
Joined
·
28 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
OpenCPN is great, but the OP indicated he wanted something more like a fixed plotter on the helm. Maybe for weatherproofness? Otherwise, his current phone with Navionics would be similar to a computer with OCPN, only more portable.

To the OP: perhaps you could expand on what you would like a plotter to accomplish that your iphone with navionics doesn't?

Mark
Mostly screen size and battery life, but trip planning and overall situational awareness. Navionics is a battery hog on my iPhone and a friends iPad Pro, it would be nice to have it hardwired to the helm. I believe they all MFDs are weatherproof like an iPhone/iPad. I did see the Axiom 9 at WM for Black Friday. Very interested. It requires a $40 adaptor cable to connect the ST60+ instruments, which is also nice.
I’m aware of the issue of relative value of the electronics to the boat. I’m the lucky guy that scored the boat (with a near new Yanmar) for only $8k, so I’ve got some fun money leftover.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,312 Posts
If you are mounting a plotter on as SS guard over the ship's compass on a boat with wheel steering...
The FIRST question (before all of the other interesting considerations mentioned by others here) is compatibility with your mounting place.
Look first... at how the little chip door is held shut on the side/edge of the case of the plotter. If it's a friction catch, you have a model designed for a sailboat or other boat intended for more use than just day cruising/casual fishing. If it has the unfortunately-common powerful permanent MAGNET closure it will affect your compass and was never intended for our little tiny slice of the market for these devices.
I have a Lowrance plotter/radar combo that is a few years old is wonderful to use for coastal sailing. It has the correct chip door closure. i.e. friction-catch.
Shop wisely. Very few of the 'sales droids' at the big box stores either know of will tell you about this limitation. A specialty vendor will. Our local bricks-n-morter electronics store let me trial fit several models, magnetic and non magnetic. I picked the one that did not move the compass needle. (!)

Do enjoy the benefits, but do not forget the basics.

BTW, you will love having the modern sharp and detailed radar image..... full screen, beside the chart, or overlapping your chart. Cool stuff!
:)
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top