Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Plan B is a success, sort of

Mike had recently installed a Garmin plotter into a NMEA 0183 network. He is very good at boat chores and installations and he had years of cable handling experience--just the friend to help me get the GPSMAP 4010 Garmin chart plotter installed at the binnacle. It had been easy to run the network from the navigation station to the quarter--Speakeasy is a Catalina, which has lots of room and few obstacles.

The drop between the plotter and the networks (there are two--Garmin Marine and NMEA 2000) required going through the posts through the cockpit deck that were already conduits for Raymarine and Yanmar instruments. Mike and I could not get the cables down the first two posts, but discovered that the third was shorter and easier. We lubricated the cables with soap and proceeded to pull the cables down on two messenger lines.

After some temporary splicing, Speakeasy has radar, GPS, and chart plotter on two networks (Garmin and NMEA 2000). However ther are two more networks on Speakeasy, NMEA 0183 and Raymarine that aren't on the Speakeasy network. That's another project.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Radar, Plan B

Revised Schematic for Speakeasy Network
I always had a plan B for my radar installation plan and I've had to implement it. It took some time to find out, but eventually I got the help-desk at Garmin to explain to me that the radome is not a NMEA 2000 device and requires the processor in a Garmin chart plotter in order to function. This is similar to how my Raymarine instruments us the autopilot as a processor. So, I found a compatible chart plotter at a reasonable price at Get Wet Navigation and laid my money down. I was called the next day to clear up a shipping question and received the package in about a week. In addition to having to buy a chart plotter in Plan B, I had got another GPS and NMEA starter kit, which I'd already purchased. I may make some use of the starter kit, but I'm not sure what I'll do with the spare GPS.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Cruising Fleet Memorial Weekend Party

Speakeasy Crew
Memorial Weekend is when the Columbia Yacht Club Cruising Fleet gets together to see if our boats still float after a long cold winter. Usually, we sail a short distance across Lake Michigan to a friendly harbor, dine, sail, and assist each other fix broken bits on our boats. This year, the cruising part got rained out by a 5-inch deluge that silted in our designated harbor. Our backup plan was a very good one. We stayed at Columbia Yacht Club.

We were treated to a great dinner off the menu, special Bloody Marys, a spectacular potluck with lamb, and many wonderful conversations. Speakeasy got rigging trimmed and very good advice about the new NMEA 2000 network. She's ready to sail and comfortable to sleep in once again. Once the network is finished, we'll know where she's going too.