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Old 03-02-2017, 04:23 PM   #1
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Portable chart plotter

I'm ferrying an old trawler from Maine to North Carolina in May. The boat has a JCR 1800 radar/ chart plotter that I was told works, but I'm looking to invest in a good stand alone backup. What's my best solution? I'd like to have charts and active captain.

Thanks
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Old 03-02-2017, 04:27 PM   #2
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Get an iPad and a couple of good navigation apps. Nothing beats the iPad as a backup navigation device. Plus, there'll be so many other uses through weather apps, car navigation apps, web browsing, and many other things.
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Old 03-02-2017, 04:27 PM   #3
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My preference would be a iPad and navtronics app
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Old 03-02-2017, 04:47 PM   #4
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I would agree. I have good plotters but do have the iPad with a gps dongle running iSailor. Seems to work great for me.
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Old 03-02-2017, 04:59 PM   #5
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I would agree. I have good plotters but do have the iPad with a gps dongle running iSailor. Seems to work great for me.


iPad with a gps dongle ???
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Old 03-02-2017, 05:05 PM   #6
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iPad with a gps dongle ???
My iPad doesn't have an internal gps. I use a gps reciever that plugs into the iPad.
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Old 03-02-2017, 05:17 PM   #7
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Neither the Navionics app nor iSailor have ActiveCaptain, one of the OP's original requirements.

There's no need to have a GPS dongle. Get a cellular iPad and you're all done. Having a cellular iPad, even without a cellular plan, has the most advantages.
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Old 03-02-2017, 05:36 PM   #8
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Or a laptop with Coastal Explorer...which I use as my primary navigation.
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Old 03-02-2017, 06:17 PM   #9
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Both - Coastal Explorer on a laptop with a USB GPS
AND an iPad with the Garmin Blue Chart (connected and using Active Captain)
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Old 03-02-2017, 08:00 PM   #10
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Neither the Navionics app nor iSailor have ActiveCaptain, one of the OP's original requirements.

There's no need to have a GPS dongle. Get a cellular iPad and you're all done. Having a cellular iPad, even without a cellular plan, has the most advantages.


Good point Jeffrey. That is why I also have SEAiQ on my iPad since it does have Active Captain.

So what are the other advantages to having a cellular iPad besides the internal gps if you don't intend to have a cellular account enabled on an iPad.
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Old 03-02-2017, 08:15 PM   #11
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I also have SEAiq and I like it very much.

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Old 03-02-2017, 09:25 PM   #12
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So what are the other advantages to having a cellular iPad besides the internal gps if you don't intend to have a cellular account enabled on an iPad.
None. That one advantage pays for itself and gives you a built-in GPS that you don't have to power, find, or hang off the port getting knocked around.

And of course, you can add a SIM to it and be online with it if needed when away from WiFi. Then it can also act as a hotspot.
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Old 03-02-2017, 09:48 PM   #13
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I see that SEAiq is available on Android as well. Doesn't look like a lot of downloads. $64 fee. Which is no big deal if it's as good as the iOS version that everyone says.
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Old 03-02-2017, 10:59 PM   #14
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MAIB: Experienced Launch Skipper Relied on iPad Navigation App Prior to Collision – gCaptain

Check out this article about using ipads for navigation. Might not work as you expect or need.
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Old 03-02-2017, 11:11 PM   #15
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MAIB: Experienced Launch Skipper Relied on iPad Navigation App Prior to Collision – gCaptain

Check out this article about using ipads for navigation. Might not work as you expect or need.
You really should read the article. These yahoos went out in fog with an iPad they had never used. The app relied on getting the display over WiFi. They didn't notice that the WiFi dropped out. I have a feeling, the iPad didn't have a GPS in it either.

Their failure had nothing to do with the iPad. They weren't qualified to drive a canoe.
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Old 03-02-2017, 11:59 PM   #16
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I agree. But the guy driving the small boat was an off duty ship pilot. Comedy of errors. Just shows how relying on electronics can get you into trouble.
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Old 03-03-2017, 12:31 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Propnut View Post
I'm ferrying an old trawler from Maine to North Carolina in May. The boat has a JCR 1800 radar/ chart plotter that I was told works, but I'm looking to invest in a good stand alone backup. What's my best solution? I'd like to have charts and active captain.

Thanks
Two years ago, when I purchased my Krogen 54 in Ketchikan, AK, I skippered the delivery to her new home port in San Francisco Bay. To be confident with the navigation options I bought Coastal Explorer and an AIS transceiver that I configured on a Windows laptop. I was able to plan the route and become familiar with the software before the delivery. A temporary installation on my new boat was quick and easy. The AIS provided the GPS for Coastal Explorer.

I couldn't have been happier with my decision. The combination worked flawlessly. Having the AIS was very useful on many occasions - especially when we ran into some very nasty conditions on Chatham Sound. The Canadian CG could see us, as could a tug who gave us advice on how best to approach Prince Rupert Island in those conditions. I am still using this "temporary" set up today.

Although I didn't use it, I understand Active Captain is well supported with Coastal Explorer.

I would use the same approach if I had another delivery on an unfamiliar boat with untested (by me) navigation equipment. Other systems may work well too - I just know this worked for me.

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Old 03-03-2017, 06:39 AM   #18
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Get an iPad and a couple of good navigation apps. Nothing beats the iPad as a backup navigation device. Plus, there'll be so many other uses through weather apps, car navigation apps, web browsing, and many other things.

Or almost any Android tablet, with same or similar nav apps.

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Old 03-03-2017, 07:40 PM   #19
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I see that SEAiq is available on Android as well. Doesn't look like a lot of downloads. $64 fee. Which is no big deal if it's as good as the iOS version that everyone says.
They have a version that is "free" but after 7 days about half the features shut off. $24.99 to permanently enable the premium features. The app works really well for me, chart downloads from the government are free, it will run in raster or vector mode, and it loads Active Captain data also for free.

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Old 03-04-2017, 06:27 AM   #20
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Thanks for the information. I've got the ActiveCaptain app and the Seaiq app.
I've downloaded the charts but can't seem to get any information on the charts like anchorages, hazards, or any other information provided by other members. What am I doing wrong?
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