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Old 03 April 2011, 16:11   #1
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Chartplotter and handheld VHF

Just about to buy my 1st RIB and will need a chartplotter and portable VHF radio. Any recommendations?
I'll only be using the RIB around the Scilly Isles, but will need something to stop me running aground on the sandbanks or hitting the many rocks around the place.
How accurate are the depth readings at any sort of speed - how far ahead do they 'look'?

Budget is around 500 in total for the 2 bits of kit.

Ta
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Old 03 April 2011, 16:49   #2
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I guess you are looking for a plotter/sounder combined, which is what I have, a Garmin 556s.

Conventional sounders are relatively narrow beam and while I think the depth is fairly accurate, they only tell you how deep the water is at the end of the boat that hasn't just hit the rock/sandbank (bit late by then).

I don't know the area but a chart is probably not likely to be much use with shifting sandbanks, mark 1 eyeball is good, a forward looking sonar is probably better but you won't get one inside that budget, I think they are a grand plus.

I've got a Standard Horizon HX270e handheld, would recommend it or whatever replaced it (I think it's discontinued now).
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Old 03 April 2011, 17:08   #3
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This is your Handheld VHF: Clicky (might still be a RIBnet discount there?)

A Chartplotter will not give your actual depth, just your charted depth.

For Actual depth, you will need a sounder/fishfinder or a combo plotter.

Your budget precludes a combo. If I were you, I'd go for a second hand plotter and a cheapo sounder (Cuda) - the most basic rig that reads the depth. Your budget is way blown, BTW

As Bogman says, a sounder gives you historical data, it tells you what you didn't hit. If you are in tricky territory - you will have to proceed at displacement speeds and use the MI eyeball (or paddle) for depth judgement calls.
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Old 04 April 2011, 02:28   #4
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A Garmin 451S chartplotter with a sonar transducer is 359.75.

An Icom M33 handheld VHF radio is 125.75.

Those prices are inc-delivery, but ex-VAT so you need to allow for that in your budget.

Not quite enough room in your budget for a chart card for the Garmin, but you can easily add one soon at 89.00.
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Old 04 April 2011, 07:24   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BogMonster View Post
I've got a Standard Horizon HX270e handheld, would recommend it or whatever replaced it (I think it's discontinued now).
I think the 280e replaced it, I've got one and it's a nice solid feeling lump of plastic. I've not had it long enough to say any more about it but it feels robust enough and the rechargeable battery life seems decent.

As a cheap chart plotter option, I got a newish Dell PDA and a GPS receiver card from Fleabay for about 40 quid. Memory Map Marine gives you all (or at least most) of the UK charts for 30-odd quid from Amazon, it includes a Windows Mobile version which runs on the PDA. Including an Aquapac type bag I think I was about 80-quid all in. I bought it for sea kayaking but it's been living on the RIB's dash since I got it all running.
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Old 05 April 2011, 02:16   #6
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You could forgo the depth sounder option to make room in the budget for a chard card?

Garmin 451, G2 card & Icom M33 for around 533 excl.
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Old 05 April 2011, 10:20   #7
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go with channel ribs suggestions, both ideal for ribs, and the weather,the garmin is preloaded with a chart, look in the sailing section on ebay garmin cards pop up there nice and cheap..
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