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SLO Randy
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Joined: 5/30/20
Posts: 4
Recommendations for new instruments

My first post !   I did read through the forums before posting. 
I just took the plunge of pursuing my sailing dreams and bought a 1992 down in Mexico from the original owner.  Overall very nice condition but needing to be upgraded.  It has the original ST4000 gages, which either don't work or can't been seen due to old LCD display (autopilot does still work).  I'm looking at going to a 3 across pod but would greatly appreciate suggestions for gages (Raymarine or Garmin), and any other tips that would make this project go well.  Comments on my plan are appreciated.

For the 3 across pod I'm looking at the following configuration: (1) Wind   (2) Depth & Speed combo   (3) Keep the currently autopilot to limit expenses, unless it would make more sense do to that now.

Also, is there a suggestion for what to do with the lower platform that holds 2 lower gages?

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Chachere
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Posts: 694

    Congrats on your new boat.
     A lot of this will have to do with a) what your preferences are for the sort of data you want at the helm, b) what your sailing style is and the sailing conditions are in your area, and c) how much you want to spend.
    FWIW: I very much like having a chart plotter at the helm, and to a considerable extent the newer chartplotters (which are multi-function displays, or "MFD") can handle most or all of the data that the individual devices displayed -- including, given your indicated preferences, wind, depth, and speed.   Our current system is a B&G 9" Zues 2,  and which is tied into the ST4000 (which operates on the older Seatalk network) via a multiplexer (http://www.shipmodul.com/en/index.html ), so that we can drive the ST4000 from routes in the chartplotter.   We also have a remote handset for the VHF at the helm (tied into the main Standard Horizon VHF unit at the nav table below, and also tied into the chartplotter via the multiplexer, as the VHF communicates via the older NMEA 0183 data).     The Zeus 2 replaced our earlier set-up, which had a seperate Garmin chartplotter and a JRC radar (both somewhat ancient, but still servicable); the Zeus 2 has both the radar display and the chartplotter.   The downside, however, is that the more you put yours eggs into the MFD basket, the less redundancy you have if the MFD fails....
  When changing out instruments, rather than buy a new instrument pod, we screwed a piece of starboard over the face of the pod and cut new holes accordingly.
   One consideration, too, is how many cables you can fit into the tubes of the pedestal guard.   We upgraded from the original 1" diameter to a 1.25" guard from Edson, which helped.
   As to the auto-pilot:  As I indicated, we are still using the ST4000, which works for most of our sailing conditions.  An upgrade here to a below-deck auto-pilot would be a very nice upgrade, and if you dig around on this site you will find some detailed writeups by members who have done that on both Mk1s and Mk2s.  Its not an insignificant cost, but from what I've read it works much better than the ST4000, which shows its weaknesses in heavy or following seas, and gives you a secondary means of steering if the cable/chain mechanism of the wheel fails at sea. 
   My main suggestion is not to rush on this; spend some time learning how the boat and you get along, and plan out your upgrade(s) accordingly.   (We're approaching the 10th anniversary of ownership of our C36, and are still tinkering and upgrading...its a process!)

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SLO Randy
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Joined: 5/30/20
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Thank you Mathew for the detailed information.  Many things to consider, but overall I'm just planning to sail for pleasure...no racing or major crossings.  At this time having wind data, speed, and depth should be enough.  I'll have a iPad chartplotter mounted to the helm with a Simrad chartplotter on a swing arm in the companion way.  

If I understand correctly the Raymine i70 would work just fine if had 2 displays; one for wind and the other with the depth and speed.  But, I'm certainly open for additional suggestions. 

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GaryB
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Joined: 10/26/08
Posts: 534

Looking at your picture and setup reminded me when I changed my setup 16 years ago. Here is a link to the technical section which I submitted back then. I since had to replace the Raytheon Radar with a Furuno and  the radio I have the ICOM external mic back at the helm.I still use the Garman 182C chart plotter. My feeling is this also keeps the instruments away from all weather in most cases. There was an Edson all SS repacement for the shelf that you questioned. Removing this makes it easier to travel forward from the helm. I'm not all that enthused by having the helm built up with all the instruments, but that is an individual choice and as the saying goes "it is your boat"! Anyway here is a link to the technical section I contributed years ago.
https://www.catalina36.org/members/technical/upgrades/relocating-nav-instruments

knotdoneyet
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Joined: 7/27/12
Posts: 253

Got caught out in some standard Florida TStorms recently and the sideways rain made my touch screen useless - make sure to have physical controls.  

Having a plotter at the helm, in the ICW, when heavy rain makes you blind is very nice and keeps you from running aground.  But I agree with the comments on clutter.

Only gripe on my Raymarine system is that I cannot control the autopilot from my slaved IPAD. Actually a serious nuisance during passages and weather.  Something to consider as it means having to go to the helm for every course change or adjustment.

my below decks evolution autopilot exceeds my expectations in driving the boat.  Note there is no autopilot that likes large following seas.  Mine has the strength but lacks the anticipation to take out the rolls.

Note IPADS are near useless in the sunlight and polarized glasses make it worse.  Turning t sideways helps.

It depends greatly where you sail and how you sail.  There's really no wrong choice as most of the gear is really good.

SLO Randy
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Joined: 5/30/20
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Thank you GaryB.  I'll have to figure out the technical side of this website since when I click the link it says I'm not authorized to view it.  

Never mind...I just figured out the difference between Registered and Member.  I'm now a member.

SLO Randy
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Joined: 5/30/20
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Hi Jim.  In re-reading your post you mention a "Slaved iPad".  Can you explain what that means.  Is it tied into your instruments?

Thank you,

knotdoneyet
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Joined: 7/27/12
Posts: 253

It's a fully functional repeater of the chart plotter screen.  It connects via WiFi.

You can operate all the functions just as if you were there.  Like having a portable plotter.

Recently I read that it will operate the autopilot but not turn it on or off.  That may have been an update that I'll need test out.

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