Electronics+Navigations

While your smartphone or tablet will never take the place of your other onboard electronics, it never hurts to have a backup. Loading up with a bunch of apps to help you get from point A to point B can also be a lot of fun, whether you’re underway or planning your next cruise from the comfort of your office or living room. Here are a few we’d recommend.
While Automatic Identification Systems (AIS) have been appearing on more commercial and recreational vessels, many sailors still find it to be cost-prohibitive. As an alternative, I recently used a combination of smartphone apps and AIS websites...

McMurdo Fast Find

by David Schmidt, Posted August 5, 2009
McMurdo has introduced two new Fast Find emergency personal-locator beacons that broadcast on both 121.5 and 406 MHz. Once activated, the units broadcast for 24 hours. Both come loaded with an SOS LED light that flashes the Morse code SOS pattern. According to McMurdo, most emergency signals that are broadcast on the 406 MHz signal are “heard” within 3 to 45 minutes; it then takes 3 additional

Navigate in Style

by Sail Staff, Posted December 9, 2005
There’s more to navigating than gaping slack-jawed at a plotter screen. Keeping up the old skills just might save your bacon one day, and even if that day never comes, it’s fun to keep up a plot on a paper chart. This top-notch set of navigation instruments—parallel rules, dividers, compass—from Weems & Plath comes in a wooden case that’s ready for gift-wrapping. $99. Weems & Plath, 800-638-0428,

Connected Color

by Sail Staff, Posted October 18, 2007
Raymarine’s innovative ST70s instrument displays use bright 3.5-inch high-resolution color screens to display traditional instrument information (really well), plus engine, weather, and other data that’s available on the multi-manufacturer NMEA 2000 data standard. They also mark the introduction of SeaTalkNG (new generation), which is both a rugged-yet-slim plug-and-play cabling system and an

Safety in a Small Package

by Adam Cort, Posted November 15, 2011
The ResQLink 406 MHz personal locator beacon (PLB) is less than 4in long and weighs a mere 4.6 oz.

Make Your Wi-Fi Float

by Ralph Naranjo, Posted June 12, 2012
When it comes to Wi-Fi’s role in shuttling navigation and performance data around a boat, there are two schools of thought. One approach lashes a wireless router to a proven digital charting system; the other links Wi-Fi capability to an iPad or some other tablet packed with navigation apps.
The free app is available from iTunes and includes high-quality world charts, route management, wind GRIB downloads and ActiveCaptain integration. Routes, tracks and waypoints can be wirelessly transferred between your iPhone, iPad and Wi-Fi-enabled chartplotter.
Maybe you’ve seen the popular shirt around the marina that reads: B-O-A-T/Break Out Another Thousand. It’s a pretty accurate saying when it comes to boat ownership and maintenance, but you don’t have to take the same financial blow to capture quality images offshore.

MN30

by David Schmidt, Posted August 5, 2009
Spend enough time sailing and you’ll eventually lose your masthead anemometer. Sometimes big winds or storms will take them out; seabirds also think they’re a handy place to perch. When it breaks or needs replacing, wouldn’t it be nice to simply remove the old anemometer and screw in the new one, no wires or connectors involved? For years, Tacktick has been making high-quality, wireless,
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