Onboard PC, what’s the ideal?

 Funky nav laptop1

Over at rec.boats.electronics there’s a great thread underway about the ‘perfect’ built-in onboard computer. I’m particularly interested as I’ll likely go that route if and when I ever manage to finagle a larger cruising boat. In the meantime, last week I put some miles on the rather funky rig above (bigger here), and it actually performed pretty darn well, even gunkholing around the hairy unmarked ledges in Penobscot Bay’s outer waters (it was calm and clear). I used the old soft case (and sometimes a towel) to keep the laptop from sliding around. Valuable accessories are the Hoodman screen hood (really cuts glare, though I notice they don’t seem to sell this model anymore), a tiny Atek optical USB mouse, and an old Deluo USB GPS (no WAAS and weak signals in my cabin, but still consistently accurate). Here I’m using Coastal Explorer 1.1 (now shipping), which is giving me that “the more I use it, the more I like it” feeling. It happens that the designer of CE has an interesting description of his own onboard PC system here.

Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now pleased to have Ben Stein as a very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Please don't regard him as an "expert"; he's getting quite old and thinks that "fadiddling fumble-putz" is a more accurate description.

1 Response

  1. Eric Gisler says:

    Hi Ben,
    I actually started the thread at rec.boats.electronics, and it’s been tremendously informative. I promised I wouldn’t advertise on the newsgroup, since that isn’t what that’s for, but if you don’t mind, I wanted to post a link here for those that may be interested:

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