Category: Cabin & deck gear

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Helm ergonomics #2: Gizmo’s pilothouse

“Your boat should fit like a glove!” yacht designer Dave Gerr wrote in the 1990’s, and the 2020 refit of Gizmo’s lower helm is the closest I’ve gotten to that excellent advice yet. The ergonomically arranged array of displays and controls above are also a somewhat experimental mix of PC and tablet navigation tools with dedicated marine electronics and oodles of monitoring in the background. I could talk for hours about the gear choices and install details, but the focus of this entry is how well this helm layout works

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Raymarine announces YachtSense control and switching system

Boat show season 2020 has turned into virtual event season 2020. Raymarine got in on the action with a press conference to coincide with the start of METSTrade Connect, the virtual networking event organized by METSTrade. Raymarine gave an update on DockSense, their collision avoidance system, and announced YachtSense, the product name for a new family of control and switching products.

9

Discovering new problems on my old boat, undersized wires edition

Have Another Day is a 2003 Carver Voyager 570 that I’ve owned for about six and a half years. I’ve probably taken apart more of this boat than most owners would, but yet — on a surprisingly regular basis — I still discover new things about her. Most recently I found some potentially dangerous undersized wiring in the gray water sump for the shower.

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Govee WiFi thermometer and hydrometer, inexpensive and easy off boat monitoring

Monitoring the temperature of your boat (or RV) can be important to maintaining the health and safety of your vessel. My reasons for such monitoring have included ensuring that the heat is working (and nothing is freezing) inside the boat, that the air conditioning is working (and nothing is cooking) inside the same boat, that the engine room temps are normal underway, and that the conditions are safe for pets. It’s not always simple or cheap to get this information remotely, but I’ve recently come across an inexpensive and simple option that’s worked well for two months, the Govee WiFi thermometer and hydrometer.

1

Solar-powered dinghy bilge pumps, the Sea Joule

A solar-powered bilge pump is often a beloved accessory for a small boat that stays in the water a lot and doesn’t have its own electrical system. But when they fail, the disappointment and repair hassle can add up to more pain than the manual pumping you hoped to avoid. Which is why the exceptionally rugged-looking pump above got my attention…

13

DC Air Conditioning – Comfort on the water, no generator required

As the hands-on proprietor of a marine systems installation company — and as an avid cruiser on my own time — I’ve learned that new climate control technology is changing the way we go boating. By pairing DC air conditioning systems with advanced battery chemistries, we can finally install powerful climate systems on boats without generators.

1

Blu3 Nemo, the ideal boat maintenance dive rig?

It’s understandable that Blu3 headlines its unique Nemo surface-supplied diving device with an attractive image shot in warm, shallow water. But while a mere 10 feet of hose strikes me as quite limited for even hookah-style sport diving, it may well work fine for untangling a lobster pot line wrapped in your prop or other underwater boat tasks. Especially since the floating part of Nemo is quite small and should easily follow a diver around…

14

Bilge pump switches, tough boats, and safe 2020 wishes to all

“NO ELECTRONICS” as a product feature? Is that where we’re at as the decades turn? But I also deduced evidence that these new-to-me USS Ultra bilge pump switches actually are ultra reliable. Despite premium pricing, the excellent marine chandlery in Rockland keeps plenty of Ultras in stock, and so they’re probably installed on some of the many nearby commercial vessels. Which especially includes the growing fleet of tough, handsome, and well-equipped offshore lobster boats that I’d like to tell you about…

10

ScanStrut Rokk Wireless phone charging, testing the first generation

The Scanstrut Rokk Wireless charging pad I tested practically disappears under my phone, and obviously there’s no USB charging wire involved either. But that’s the idea, and there’s even a model that I could have completely hidden under that varnished cherry surface, or the similar  counter at Gizmo’s pilothouse helm. Just put the phone down in the right spot and charging happens!..

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2019 IBEX Innovation Award Product Winners Announced

The 2019 IBEX Innovation Awards, managed by the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) and judged by Boating Writers International (BWI), were presented at the International BoatBuilders’ Exhibition and Conference (IBEX) during the annual Industry Breakfast on Tuesday, October 1st. Eight BWI judges with various technical backgrounds in boating selected the new product winners from over 100 entries submitted by marine trade companies – the largest program to date…