Garmin xHD radar upgrade

I always have high hopes starting a project. They never turn out to be as straightforward as I want them to. My project for this weekend was to replace the Garmin 18″ HD radome with a new fancy and possibly amazing just released Garmin 24″ xHD radome. In addition to the new radar, I also bought a new Seaview mast mount. The best price I found on the radome was The GPS Store, the Seaview mount came from Fisheries Supply.

It should be a fairly simple swap. There is just a power cable and a CAT5 network cable out to the radar. The hardest part should be changing the mast mount. Right? That’s the way I figured it.

mv Archimedes 18 HD and 24 xHD radar  Continue reading

Seattle to Spencer Spit

We departed Seattle Saturday afternoon. The plan was to get outside the locks so we could motor north early. Lots of boats waiting so we all ended up in the large lock. The large lock is easy, but it is always interesting. The larger boats tie to the wall with the smaller boats rafted to them. As soon as the gates open, they announce “larger boats first”. Invariably, the small boats all rush in. There is no where for them to go and no way for the larger boats to get in. The lock attendants patiently sort out the chaos and we all eventually end up where we wanted to go.

mv Archimedes in the large lock Continue reading

Even more loose ends …

Everywhere I look I find a loose end just lying around. I am trying to sweep them up as quickly as I can. It usually takes three or four tries to complete a project. I attribute this to my general lack of organization.

Truth be told, I get involved in the work and forget to take photos of the important stuff.

I posted recently about our video installation here. At the time, I thought I had taken a few photos that seemed important but could not find. I still can’t find them so I took a few more. I don’t know how interesting they are, but it seems like they should be posted to complete the story.

First, the video amplifiers with all the cabling installed.

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Keeping an eye on things

Our chartplotters each support two video inputs. I am the kind of guy that thinks if it can, it should. If there are two jacks there, something should be plugged in to them. So I added a camera on the mast, and another in the engine room.

The camera on the mast looks backward at the stern deck and the area around the stern of the boat. We use this camera often. Whenever one of us is outside on the stern deck while we are underway, the other is watching from the helm.

The camera is especially handy when we are maneuvering around marinas and near docks.

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Some gain, not all pain

Besides untangling anchor chain last weekend, I was able to get a few additional projects completed … and squeeze in some actual fun as well. The details of these projects are not entirely interesting so I’ll stick to the highlights.

I installed a second chartplotter. A Garmin 7212. With Garmin’s release of the new 8000 series chartplotters, the cost of the 7212 has come way down. Down to the point of affordability … at least for us.

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Gulf Islands – Observations and Errata

We just finished two weeks in the Gulf Islands of British Columbia. We’ve been going there for a number of years. We try to visit old favorites and make some new discoveries each time we visit. This year, the weather was fantastic. Some years are sunny, some are wet, some a combination (this is most common). We had sun, warm, and flat seas almost the entire time. It clouded up one afternoon, rained in the evening and through the night, and was clear and sunny the next morning. Perfect!

This is what boating is about.

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Keeping Stuff Organized

I don’t know about your boat, but we have collected a drawer full of manuals and documentation for the various electronics and gizmos on Archimedes. While we occasionally reference one from time to time, they mostly just take up space. Our solution is an iPad and an app called Good Reader ($4.99).

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