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I sail a C&C 30 in Lake Ontario (Toronto). The plan is to eventually sail the ICW and the Atlantic Coast to some degree. I own land in Belize, would be cool to go there.

My boat currently has no electronic equipment. I would like to buy a piece of equipment that covers most of my needs. My buddy told me to check out fish finders, he says there are high end ones that cover most navigational needs as well. Ideally I would like to find one under 2000 dollars that will cover my needs in the great lakes as I practice over the next couple seasons and can handle the Atlantic if needed. This is a piece of equipment I might not buy this season so I may be putting the cart before the horse but I have many cold months to prepare myself and these questions tide me over until sailing season.

Thank you
 

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Raymarine's e7d chartplotter is a very capable touch screen chartplotter. Buy it with the standard charts from Navionics and you will have charts for the Us and Canada. In my opinion, the 3D chart options available on other packages are nice but not really necessary. This plotter also comes with a transducer for depth and finding fish. That will give you your depth on the multi functional display. The units gps built in to the chartplotter will tell you speed. The other big item would be a VHF with AIS capabilities such as one made by Standard Horizon. I believe you can get both for close to $2000. What about autopilot? Do you have one? I think they are pretty necessary especially if you don't have a lot of crew for those overnight hops down the coast. That is yet another discussion!

Tod
 

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Hey,

If you want an autopilot AND a plotter there is no way to stay under $2K. The cheapest autopilot is the Raymarine wheel pilot and it will cost around $1500. You can add a cheaper Raymarine plotter with fishfinder but that is around a $1000.

If you don't include the autopilot you will have lots and lots of choices. You can get something with a 5" display, charts, transducer for fish finder, etc. for around $500 (check out Lowrance, Standard Horizon, and a few others). You can get a 7" display, same other things for around $900 and so on.

What about basic sailing instruments like wind speed and direction and speed though water? Do you have that? Do you want it?

Good luck,
Barry
 
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