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Old 01-06-2014, 05:36 PM   #41
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With the autopilot, I sometimes have the opportunity to leave the pilothouse and enjoy the scene from the deck. (1/5/2014 on San Pablo Bay)
Thats why they make flybridges.
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Old 01-06-2014, 05:44 PM   #42
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Yeah, but after a little while, I return to the pilothouse's protection from wind and sun.
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Old 01-06-2014, 06:01 PM   #43
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Yeah, but after a little while, I return to the pilothouse's protection from wind and sun.
Exactly, with a flybridge you have the best of both worlds.
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Old 01-06-2014, 06:19 PM   #44
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But you'll miss being close to the rush of water passing by at six knots if you're way up on the flying bridge.

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Old 01-06-2014, 06:23 PM   #45
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But you'll miss being close to the rush of water passing by at six knots if you're way up on the flying bridge.
Oh you got me there, umm....
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Old 01-06-2014, 06:29 PM   #46
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N4712

How do you deal with footprints on the monitor? If it's a touchscreen, how do you do a pinch maneuver to zoom in and out?

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Old 01-06-2014, 06:32 PM   #47
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N4712 How do you deal with footprints on the monitor? If it's a touchscreen, how do you do a pinch maneuver to zoom in and out? Tom
My feet don't actually touch the monitor, they are rested on that wood trim. It's an illusion. The chart-plotter Is not touchscreen, there's a little remote to the left of the display that controls the black box that drives the monitor.
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:19 PM   #48
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The last two seasons we have put more than 1,500 miles under our keel running back and forth to the San Juans many times, and did Hood Canal and all of South Sound last summer. Without a working autopilot! We have an older Furuno model that appears to be working (self-diagnostic program says all is good), but it will not steer. It does, however, make a great rudder angle indicator...

It is getting close to the top of our list of things to repair and/or upgrade. Our last boat, a 33' pilothouse cutter sailboat, had an AP that we used quite extensively here and in the islands. Not all the time, mind you, but when conditions were optimal for that type of underway enjoyment, and for pee breaks, etc. On this boat, where we have yet to exceed 8 straight hours of running (2-6 hours is "average") having my wife relieve me at the helm for a bit has sufficed.

In short, yes, I think you will want one!
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:25 PM   #49
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But you'll miss being close to the rush of water passing by at six knots if you're way up on the flying bridge.

I really don't think the terms "rush by" and "6 kts" should be in the same sentence!

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Old 01-06-2014, 11:27 PM   #50
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I really don't think the terms "rush by" and "6 kts" should be in the same sentence!
It works for this former sailor, leading a flotilla through the often narrow and shallow Petaluma River:

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Old 01-06-2014, 11:30 PM   #51
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It works for this former sailor.
our last sailboat cruised at 6kts... that is one reason we moved to trawlers..
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Old 01-07-2014, 11:17 PM   #52
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I must be in the minority here, but I love hand steering. It's too easy to get complacent on auto-pilot, and for me the real joy in boating is the driving. Why turn that over to a machine? That said, it does have its place and it's a useful tool if you have it.
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Old 01-07-2014, 11:39 PM   #53
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Greetings,
Mr. c. Welcome aboard.
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:15 PM   #54
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I saved money by putting in a relatively low cost plotter, bottom machine and radar. But I put some serious money into the AP. Best money spent on the boat. Don't get a cheap one. Only thing worse than no AP is one that does not work well. The AP is on most of the time, even most ditch travel.
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:25 PM   #55
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I saved money by putting in a relatively low cost plotter, bottom machine and radar. But I put some serious money into the AP. Best money spent on the boat. Don't get a cheap one. Only thing worse than no AP is one that does not work well. The AP is on most of the time, even most ditch travel.
Yep, if you do get one go Simrad!
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:36 PM   #56
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Yep, Simrad. Got an AP35, probably a little overkill. It's nice because I tuned one set of parameters for ditch travel, another for low speed offshore, and another set for offshore fast running (20-25kts). All separately tune-able. Once dialed in, it really keeps a good heading. It is not state of the art anymore (by a longshot), but I was used to it running a commercial boat with same unit. Not sure what the best unit is now, as tech has gotten way better.
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:48 PM   #57
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Yep, Simrad. Got an AP35, probably a little overkill. It's nice because I tuned one set of parameters for ditch travel, another for low speed offshore, and another set for offshore fast running (20-25kts). All separately tune-able. Once dialed in, it really keeps a good heading. It is not state of the art anymore (by a longshot), but I was used to it running a commercial boat with same unit. Not sure what the best unit is now, as tech has gotten way better.
IMO Simrad is still the best.
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Old 01-19-2014, 02:27 PM   #58
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Big fan of Auto Pilot

However they do fail from time time. Lost my tiller sensor half way to the Farallons and the boat did a 180. WTF! You still need someone on watch.
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Old 01-19-2014, 02:42 PM   #59
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Very happy with our Simrad AP28.
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Old 01-19-2014, 03:58 PM   #60
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Simrad used to be tops, especially in autopilots...recent mergers have taken their toll...we'll have to see how they do in the long run now.
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