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Old 12-31-2016, 02:04 PM   #1
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Airmar 220 WX???

Anyone have any experience with one of these?
I'm wondering if it might be an interesting alternative to the typical wind vane sensor We have used on other boats.
It gives wind information, it is a GPS and it gives basic weather info...
As we are no longer sailing, I'm guessing that if it is less accurate than a basic wind speed/direction sensor, we'd be fine...
Just curious,
Bruce
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Old 12-31-2016, 02:29 PM   #2
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We have a Furuno 200 weather station, which is a rebranded Airmar 200. Slightly older model (originally installed 2011) and it works very well. Don't know how accurate it is, although it seems to correlate with observations.

We originally had it connected to a Furuno NavNet2 system but reinstalled it on our next boat which had a Simrad NSE12 MFD.

It worked basically the same on both although the Simrad showed the true wind direction in degrees true while the Furuno showed it as relative to the boat direction.

Having the true wind direction, the true wind speed, and the air temp all together on one display is very handy. The other variables such as pitch, roll, and rate of turn aren't of interest.

The true wind speed is the most useful for cruising Georgia Strait or Johnstone Strait.
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Old 12-31-2016, 03:18 PM   #3
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We have a Furuno 200 weather station, which is a rebranded Airmar 200. Slightly older model (originally installed 2011) and it works very well. Don't know how accurate it is, although it seems to correlate with observations.

We originally had it connected to a Furuno NavNet2 system but reinstalled it on our next boat which had a Simrad NSE12 MFD.

It worked basically the same on both although the Simrad showed the true wind direction in degrees true while the Furuno showed it as relative to the boat direction.

Having the true wind direction, the true wind speed, and the air temp all together on one display is very handy. The other variables such as pitch, roll, and rate of turn aren't of interest.

The true wind speed is the most useful for cruising Georgia Strait or Johnstone Strait.
So, this is your only wind instrument?
I really don't want another sailboat style sending unit and the temperature/pressure readings would simply be a bonus...
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Old 12-31-2016, 03:26 PM   #4
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We also have an old analog wind instrument that only gives perceived wind speed in MPH. Useful for when Blue Sky is stationary and since it has a device (no idea what it's called) that shows max wind speed it also is good for telling what the max wind speed was over a given period.

The Airmar does some averaging so it's difficult to relate the two, besides the different units used. (Airmar is in knots)
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Old 12-31-2016, 10:13 PM   #5
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I have one interfaced to my NN3D system. Unlike a conventional wind meter, it is able to deduce true wind speed and direction from the measured apparent wind speed and direction. Interesting information, but in retrospect, I am not sure that the value of the info is worth the cost.
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Old 12-31-2016, 11:35 PM   #6
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I have an Airmar WX 200, displays some but not all available info on Nobletec Navigator on PC and Furuno MFD12 Trouble free, and nothing for birds to break! I like all the info although not sure I need it. I seem to recall an older thread drawing attention to cheaper options.
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Old 01-01-2017, 06:12 AM   #7
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I've had great luck with them, and there are a number of model variations. My most recent is a WX110 which was a good bit less expensive, and I got the add-on humidity sensor. I think the big difference between the 110 and 220 is that the 220 has a GPS built into it as well as weather. If you need a backup GPS, it could be the way to go. But if all you want is weather, the 110 is probably a better pick.
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Old 01-01-2017, 06:41 AM   #8
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Hmmm,.......I'm an ex sailor, so wind info was critical.....speed and direction - both true and apparent.
For our current boat, with two bloody big Lehmans I really dont care which way the wind is blowing or how strong it is - I have callibrated eye balls and can get the current forecast from the internet and of course a barometer. So please bring me into the 21st century about what I am missing.
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Old 01-01-2017, 06:46 AM   #9
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I've had great luck with them, and there are a number of model variations. My most recent is a WX110 which was a good bit less expensive, and I got the add-on humidity sensor. I think the big difference between the 110 and 220 is that the 220 has a GPS built into it as well as weather. If you need a backup GPS, it could be the way to go. But if all you want is weather, the 110 is probably a better pick.
So,
Do you use this for wind speed too or do you have a dedicated wind speed instrument?
The original thought was to use it in place of a wind speed instrument.
We will feed that data into the NMEA 2000 bus for use in the chart plotter (no stand alone instruments).
I became interested in this as by the time you purchase the NMEA 0183 to 2000 converter and add the cost of the wind vane you are at 80% of the cost anyway. The weather data would be useful and then there is a built in gps backup...
Thanks,
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Old 01-01-2017, 06:51 AM   #10
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Hmmm,.......I'm an ex sailor, so wind info was critical.....speed and direction - both true and apparent.
For our current boat, with two bloody big Lehmans I really dont care which way the wind is blowing or how strong it is - I have callibrated eye balls and can get the current forecast from the internet and of course a barometer. So please bring me into the 21st century about what I am missing.
We actually sailed for a time without true wind instruments! Well, we did have a Windex but nothing else for about 5 or 6 years.
I finally added a wind instrument to that boat 15 years ago simply to prevent arguments about the strength of the wind with my wife!
In the end, she loves having wind information available. She would love to have weather data from a local source too, she is a data kind of girl...
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Old 01-01-2017, 09:10 AM   #11
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So,
Do you use this for wind speed too or do you have a dedicated wind speed instrument?
The original thought was to use it in place of a wind speed instrument.
We will feed that data into the NMEA 2000 bus for use in the chart plotter (no stand alone instruments).
I became interested in this as by the time you purchase the NMEA 0183 to 2000 converter and add the cost of the wind vane you are at 80% of the cost anyway. The weather data would be useful and then there is a built in gps backup...
Thanks,
Bruce
Yes, it's my weather instrument first and foremost. Wind speed and direction, air temp, and relative humidity. Also baro pressure. It inherently measures apparent wind, but any semi-intellegent display can calculate and display ground wind as long as speed and heading are available. Your N2K GPS and heading sensor will fill this need. Note that there is an important difference between the course over ground that a GPS reports, and heading from a true heading sensor. I just looked and the 110WX was about $850 including the humidity sensor and N2K cable. I Don't remember what the 220WX goes for, but I thought it was over $1000? Not sure which will best fill your needs.

Note that another choice is the Maretron WSO100. It's around $550 and does wind speed, direction, baro, humidity, air temp. I've had one for a couple of years and the humidity crapped out on it. Maretron wouldn't quote me a repair cost, so I bought the 110WX because I had used one successfully in the past, and I liked the replaceable humidity sensor. But Maretron ended up repairing the WSO100 for free, so I reinstalled it. I would have switched to the 110WX, and might still, but it requires removing the N2K cable to the WSO and replacing it with the Airmar cable (the device end connector is different), and being fundamentally lazy, I just reinstalled the repaired WSO.
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Old 01-01-2017, 12:50 PM   #12
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FWIW, my boat doesn't have any wind information and I really miss it. Partly it is just the habits of an old sailor that was used to always checking a telltale, wind vane, or in later years a wind speed and direction indicator. I would like to have it now because I have a lot of windage and often dock in areas with very swirly winds. I can see a flag blowing a 100 yards away and yet the wind at my boat may be 90 degrees off from that. If I was to spec a new boat, I would definitely want wind speed and direction and would prefer to have an old school stand alone display that showed wind speed and a direction indicator like I have on my sailboat.

Different topic but I would also add that I miss a speed indicator. As finicky as they have always been in my experience, I want to know what my speed through the water is. SOG I have from my gps, but with the currents we have here and running a 7 knot boat, I want to know how fast I am moving through the water.
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Old 01-01-2017, 01:00 PM   #13
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FWIW, my boat doesn't have any wind information and I really miss it. Partly it is just the habits of an old sailor that was used to always checking a telltale, wind vane, or in later years a wind speed and direction indicator. I would like to have it now because I have a lot of windage and often dock in areas with very swirly winds. I can see a flag blowing a 100 yards away and yet the wind at my boat may be 90 degrees off from that. If I was to spec a new boat, I would definitely want wind speed and direction and would prefer to have an old school stand alone display that showed wind speed and a direction indicator like I have on my sailboat.

Different topic but I would also add that I miss a speed indicator. As finicky as they have always been in my experience, I want to know what my speed through the water is. SOG I have from my gps, but with the currents we have here and running a 7 knot boat, I want to know how fast I am moving through the water.
Dave,
We will have a speed paddle wheel.
As for the stand alone instruments, they will be banned from this boat!
The thinking is that we will instead use a pair of 14" displays in the pilothouse and a single 14" on the flybridge. There is more than enough real estate to have the information up at any time...
The Airmar 220 WX infact does give wind information. I am just not clear on how it differs from a traditional wind speed/direction sensor in a real life sense...
I'm thinking that the weather station would make an interesting addition to the boat and that if we find the wind portion lacking, we can always add the traditional sensor later.
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Old 01-01-2017, 01:14 PM   #14
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Dave:

I have had my boat long enough that speed through the water has come and gone with instrument changes, a few times. I am currently without, as the last transducer with a wheel on it is no longer attached to anything. Over that span of time I have also settled into running at the same speed through the water all of the time, and I know that if I set my engine rpm, that is the speed I will get. Often, the GPS speed disagrees with my expectation, but rather than change anything, I just wait a while, and always find that waiting yields the GPS speed coming around to confirm my expectations, due to passing through the current that was giving me too much or too little speed over ground.
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Old 01-01-2017, 01:46 PM   #15
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FWIW, my boat doesn't have any wind information and I really miss it. Partly it is just the habits of an old sailor that was used to always checking a telltale, wind vane, or in later years a wind speed and direction indicator. I would like to have it now because I have a lot of windage and often dock in areas with very swirly winds. I can see a flag blowing a 100 yards away and yet the wind at my boat may be 90 degrees off from that. If I was to spec a new boat, I would definitely want wind speed and direction and would prefer to have an old school stand alone display that showed wind speed and a direction indicator like I have on my sailboat.
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Old 01-01-2017, 04:42 PM   #16
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Well, I'm dissapointed that nobody has answered my post about Why you need all this information about the wind on an instrument at the helm rather than actually looking at the water and instantly being able to calulate where the wind is cominig from and whether its blowing soft or hard.
A sailor needs to know this because it is all about the "engine" that is driving the boat.We need the same sort of in fo about our engine/s and thats why we are so focussed on temps and pressures.
So............unless someone can actually explain how an instrument telling of the actual wind speed and direction, both true and apparent helps me be a better skipper of my boat, I gotta say its all eye candy for owners that have too many boat $ s to spare
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Old 01-01-2017, 04:49 PM   #17
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Hmmm,.......I'm an ex sailor, so wind info was critical.....speed and direction - both true and apparent.
For our current boat, with two bloody big Lehmans I really dont care which way the wind is blowing or how strong it is - I have callibrated eye balls and can get the current forecast from the internet and of course a barometer. So please bring me into the 21st century about what I am missing.
My previous Masters 34, an ex CYCA committee boat (massive fridge!) came with Brooks and Gatehouse wind speed and direction instruments. Wind speed was interesting, direction helpful on occasions too, but mostly just academic interest.
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Old 01-01-2017, 04:53 PM   #18
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Well, I'm dissapointed that nobody has answered my post about Why you need all this information about the wind on an instrument at the helm rather than actually looking at the water and instantly being able to calulate where the wind is cominig from and whether its blowing soft or hard.
A sailor needs to know this because it is all about the "engine" that is driving the boat.We need the same sort of in fo about our engine/s and thats why we are so focussed on temps and pressures.
So............unless someone can actually explain how an instrument telling of the actual wind speed and direction, both true and apparent helps me be a better skipper of my boat, I gotta say its all eye candy for owners that have too many boat $ s to spare
I'd explain it again but if you didn't understand the first time, whats the point?
Are you always this condescending?
Amazing!
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Old 01-01-2017, 04:56 PM   #19
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Well, I'm dissapointed that nobody has answered my post about Why you need all this information about the wind on an instrument at the helm rather than actually looking at the water and instantly being able to calulate where the wind is cominig from and whether its blowing soft or hard.
A sailor needs to know this because it is all about the "engine" that is driving the boat.We need the same sort of in fo about our engine/s and thats why we are so focussed on temps and pressures.
So............unless someone can actually explain how an instrument telling of the actual wind speed and direction, both true and apparent helps me be a better skipper of my boat, I gotta say its all eye candy for owners that have too many boat $ s to spare
Hey, if you don't want or need it, no problem. Don't get it. But no need to crap on people who like having the info.
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Old 01-01-2017, 04:57 PM   #20
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Dave,
We will have a speed paddle wheel.
As for the stand alone instruments, they will be banned from this boat!
The thinking is that we will instead use a pair of 14" displays in the pilothouse and a single 14" on the flybridge. There is more than enough real estate to have the information up at any time...
The Airmar 220 WX infact does give wind information. I am just not clear on how it differs from a traditional wind speed/direction sensor in a real life sense...
I'm thinking that the weather station would make an interesting addition to the boat and that if we find the wind portion lacking, we can always add the traditional sensor later.
Bruce
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With a quick search I could not locate any objective data. Subjectively I'd say that ultrasonic instruments retain reliability and accuracy whilst the 'traditional vanes' etc do not over the long run. But happy to be corrected if anyone has the info.
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