Friday, February 19, 2010

Radar and NMEA 2000

I've been doing research on radar and modern boat networks. The NMEA 2000 standard is finally taking hold in the market. All name brands of NMEA products and this network allows one to pick and choose among the brands. It also allows one to add components in a timely and orderly fashion. Today, I think getting a Furuno radome is the way to go. Whatever the choice, the network must be designed carefully and installed. This is the cheapest and most important step. The main line (backbone) must go from the top of the mast to the bow and stern. There is a growing number of components that can be attached to the backbone including radar, wind speed, radio DSC, depth sounder, autopilot, engine speed, tank levels, and computers. Each of these components are pricey--they always have been because the market is so specialized. However, they get cheaper with time, so the objective is to keep existing components until they break or are not useful and then get NMEA 2000 replacements.
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