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Old 02-25-2015, 09:20 PM   #1
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Wind sensor

I have spent the last two+ years getting a Hurricane Katrina damaged boat back up to safe cruising condition. The boat is in New Orleans(Slidell actually) but I live in San Antonio, I will move it to Corpus Christi as soon as possible, I'm getting close. The wind sensor was destroyed and to be honest fixing it was very low on my huge list of things to do. The boats electronics consist of a Raymarine E120(E80 on the flybridge) classic, an open array 72 mile 10Kw radar and a DSM 300 fish finder, all of it works fine but the cable for the radar was damaged. In removing the old cable I had to spend several hours removing much of the salon ceiling and a good part of the lower helm station. That got me thinking... while its all apart might as well run all the wires I might need up to the mast. That brings me to the wind sensor and any other up grades needed. The previous wind sensor was an analog stand alone unit(i.e. not NMEA 2000), I contacted the manufacture and they no longer make the sensor that was destroyed, so I'm starting over from scratch.

The electronics are at least 10+ years old but work, I don't want to replace them now, but anything new I buy I want to work with my current system AND still be able to use it with the new electronics I buy down the road some day.

First question, would you make the 450 NM trip from New Orleans to Texas without a wind sensor? My plan was to just look at the burgee on the bow.

question 2) when I do get the wind sensor what do you recommend, ultrasonic or traditional?

While everything is apart I'm thinking I'm going to run a NMEA 2000 backbone wire from the lower helm up to the stack below the mast for any future upgrades, there is already a spare co-ax cable for an antenna(although it is probably 20 years old). What else should I run while it's all apart?

Completely and totally unrelated, the other day I read a post from a "newbie" that was from Slidell, I meant to PM him but got side tracked and now I can't find the thread he posted on... New guy from Slidell if you read this PM me please.
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Old 02-25-2015, 09:28 PM   #2
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I would look at Maretron's line. I recently installed a their Ultrasonic wind sensor which is a wind sensor, temperature sensor, and humidity sensor. A,OMG with the WSO-100 I installed a few of their DSM-150 N2k displays, very, very pleased with it.
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Old 02-25-2015, 09:30 PM   #3
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Here's some screen shots.
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Old 02-25-2015, 10:15 PM   #4
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What will the wind sensor do for you. Assuming you get good weather reports, knowing the wind speed where you are is just data. Now on a sail boat, absolutely have one.
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Old 02-25-2015, 10:43 PM   #5
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What will the wind sensor do for you. Assuming you get good weather reports, knowing the wind speed where you are is just data. Now on a sail boat, absolutely have one.
If you're asking me, the OP, it's just information we'd like to have because it's interesting to us. Also, the forecasts for this area are very general, particularly in the islands. A typical wind forecast will be 15 to 25 or 5 to 15 or something like that. Which usually means it will be 15 knots in some places and 25 in others.

They don't (and can't, really) get specific and say it's going to be 18 in Rosario Strait, 25 in Upright Channel, and 15 in West Sound. So it could be handy information at times to know what you're dealing with where you actually are. And knowing the speed could be of some value if it kicked up while we were at anchor.

But no, it's not something we feel is critical to the operation of the boat.

And it's motivated in large part because we have this nice Furuno Loran-C unit in the instrument panel that does us absolutely no good at all anymore. So we've been kicking around ideas of what might go in its place that could be of use to us, and we keep coming back to a wind speed and direction display.
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Old 02-25-2015, 10:45 PM   #6
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Put me in sunchaser's camp on this issue. Your plan of looking at the burgee is about as good as you need IMO. I'd toss the broken one and fill the hole with something more useful like a drink holder
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Old 02-25-2015, 11:09 PM   #7
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Put me in sunchaser's camp on this issue. Your plan of looking at the burgee is about as good as you need IMO. I'd toss the broken one and fill the hole with something more useful like a drink holder
Well, we have a burgee, too. It's useful but doesn't say much about speed.

We've thought about putting an AIS in the hole but we see no value in AIS for the boating we do--- we've never been in a situation in the 16+ years we've been doing this kind of boating when we wanted any of the information AIS gives you. There's good VTS coverage here for the shipping lanes so on the rare occasions we've wanted to know what was coming in poor visibility we've called the relevant VTS folks.

We've also thought about a second VHF radio for the lower helm. But the radio we have now has mutiple scan modes and we rarely use the radio anyway other than to monitor 16 so a second radio would go virtually unused.

We don't drink while we drive the boat so a drink holder would also go unused.

The instrument console is not tall enough to mount an iPad in it so that's out although it would be useful to put one of the iPads in the console instead of sitting on top of it or on the map board next to it.
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Old 02-25-2015, 11:17 PM   #8
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I agree with your thought of putting a NMEA2000 backbone in place. There are several wind/weather stations available and the instrument is often selected based on the display the information can be viewed on. Since your Raymarine does not support NMEA2000 you will have to install a display like the Maretron or if you have any thoughts on replacing the E120, most new MFDs accept NMEA2000 and then the Maretron/Airmar PB-100 or PB-150 are good choices.


I have an older PB-200 and display the wind speed/direction on many displays - Simrad NSO evo2 M-16T and Maretron N2KView (on either my laptop or as a source from a helm PC). Even my Fusion stereo rotates through a screen showing wind speed and direction.


When running the boat during the day, I watch the wind speed and direction to match with the weather report and to assist with docking. At night, it becomes even more useful to watch if conditions change.


My anchor watch shows on my iPad - the chartplotter showing me the "smiley face" of our anchor swing plot and the wind information next to it.


Some Davis weather stations come with a wireless / stand alone display which can be useful.


If you are pulling cables, I would probably pull an Ethernet cable to parallel the NMEA2000 cable.
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Old 02-25-2015, 11:43 PM   #9
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Well, we have a burgee, too. It's useful but doesn't say much about speed.

The directions below used on my home weather station can be used to improve the accuracy of your burgee observations.

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Accurate to +/- 50 mph
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