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Old 21 November 2006, 13:39   #1
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Country: Norway
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Make: Zodiac Pro Open 650
Length: 6m +
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Equipping a new RIB

Hi,

I got my new Zodiac Pro Open 650 about a two months ago. Unfortunately it is winter time in Norway so I have a few long months to wait for more frequent use. Of course I have had a few test runs, and I am very happy with the boat so far.

My question is, what experiences do you have with navigational equipment in RIB's? Do you prefer chart plotters or old-fashion paper charts? Are the chart plotters robust enough in rough weather? Are they really water tight or is it just like the cheap "watertight to 50 meters" watches?

Do you have VHF's for safety or do you just rely on cellular phones?

Any other stuff, both must-haves and nice-to-haves, that I should look into?
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Old 21 November 2006, 13:58   #2
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Country: UK - Wales
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Wouldn't even think of paper charts on a RIB - a good chartplotter will tell you exactly where you are and will stand up to the water no problem.

When I collected my boat I had to make a crossing of about 90 miles the first time I had ever been onboard. it was simple with the Raymarine chartplotter - took me right to the slipway I needed through a complex harbour.

VHF also essential - even if you only get a handheld.
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Old 21 November 2006, 14:14   #3
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Country: Norway
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I was just afraid that the screens would be too small. I don't have a console large enough for one of those integrated larger screens, so I have to choose something mounted on brackets - I have my eyes on of the Garmin's.

About the VHF, I'm thinking permanently mounted to get higher effect (25W).

I'm probably nostalgic coming to a forum like this talking about paper charts...
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Old 21 November 2006, 14:17   #4
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No I love paper charts.

Wattage isn't everything when it comes to VHF - the height of the aerial is more important. Take a handheld up in a plane and see the range you get!!!

Small screens could be a problem. Having said that you can hold them close to your face which helps a lot. If you have a PDA you can get chart software and GPS modules for them as well as waterproof cases.
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Old 21 November 2006, 14:34   #5
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If your going serious ribbing, never go anywhere with just an electronic plotter/gps. If you go for a completely digital dash like me - always take a paper chart and handheld bearing finder or have a compass on view. Ribs get wet and electronics don't always like it, (no matter how well sealed, in rough water it will often find its way in!) you can get waterproof cases for charts and they fold up pretty small - always worth having.
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Old 21 November 2006, 14:50   #6
nik
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Stanford charts are waterproof, but not everyone likes them.
I feel you should have charts aboard in case you have a chartplotter failure. Probably some sort of hand held compass as well to use with the chart.
Nick
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Old 21 November 2006, 15:03   #7
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Country: Norway
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Oh I'm definately bringing paper charts. But at first I intended to use them as my primary navigation aid - which I have now changed my mind on. The best time I ever have is high speed navigation during the night using only paper charts, a compass and a stop watch. But throw in wind, jumping on waves, and splashes of water in the face and it's probably not so much fun anymore...

Although sometimes the RIB can feel like a plane I dont it think I can count on altitude for VHF coverage...

Do you know if there are normal VHF's (not handheld) that can be removed when the boat sits in the marina?
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Old 21 November 2006, 15:25   #8
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have a look at a garmin 178 colour gps and couple it to a Icom 421 dsc radio,, that would be a reliable and simple to use set up!!
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