Saturday, April 20, 2013

‘Sandpiper’s’ GPSs etc

Last year I thoroughly tested ‘Sandpiper’s’ two GPS units, and most of my navigation around Poole Harbour was verified by them. I invariably had the Harbour chart spread out in the cockpit or on the port bunk in the cabin for immediate reference. Electrical input for the GPSs was from the ship’s battery that relied upon a solar panel for topping up. This year I have a slightly smaller solar panel, but I think it will suffice.

Yesterday, in preparation for the forthcoming cruise, I replaced the battery beside the centreboard box and I connected the GPS units to make sure they were working. Using the Almanac I updated the positions of buoys that Trinity House had moved over the winter months, and I checked the input data for every waypoint I previously programmed into the Garmin Etrex.

When out on the water I use the Etrex for navigating and the Lowrance for visual confirmation that my courses are correct.

If for unexpected reasons both GPS units fail, I have a good navigation programme* on my iPhone.

In addition to attending to the GPSs, I cleaned the interior of ‘Sandpiper’ and threw away outdated tinned food. I tried the hob and scoured pots and pans, cutlery, plates etc.

If I had not been visiting relatives today I would have antifouled the boat. The weather was perfect with not a cloud to be seen, but that’s how things go. Tomorrow, due to commitments, I shall not be able to apply the antifouling. Maybe I’ll be able to do it on Monday - the sooner the better, because I would like to launch ‘Sandpiper’ for a trial sail.


Confessions of an Old Salt

‘Talitha’s’ GPS

*iPhone Nautical Chart Navigator

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