U.S. Boating Charts DVD…nice, but what about updates?

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.

6 Responses

  1. Raul says:

    But what about Canadian Charts?
    For those of us that navigate in Canadian waters, are there any free or inexpensive alternatives to the major electronic chart suppliers?
    Raul Biascoechea
    Everett, WA

  2. Sure: you can download chart updates from NOAA (http://nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/mcd/Raster/download.htm). When you “Review your selection” you can choose between getting the latest charts, or just an update files. If you choose “Update only”, you get *.PTC files, but installing them can be tricky: You have to put the PTC in a folder called c:\ChartKit\Patches. Then, using Memory-Map (or any other software that uses the Maptech SDK), reload your charts in the normal way from the KAP/BSB files, and they will pick up the changes.

  3. Drew Clark says:

    Ben, any idea of how soon the chartplotter guys will let us ‘flash’ a CMAP or Navionics format cartridge such that we can leverage all of these free NOAA charts? I don’t mean just a future version of, say, Furuno Navnet, but with existing investments we have all made in Raymarine, Furuno (Navnet 1 which is what I have), Garmin, Standard, etc. Is there a 3rd-party device that can upload to their proprietary format and slot/chip design? Seems like these expensive devices will quickly become anchors if the major marine manufacturers don’t step up, pushing people onto PC-based systems. Thanks

  4. GPSNavX says:

    I agree with NOAA ENCs and RNCs free, why would anyone be locked in with expensive proprietary format US charts?

  5. Anonymous says:

    Maybe NavNet 3 from Furuno will be somthing different
    (Maybe just maybe)

  6. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    I disagree with GPSNavX. There are plenty of reasons to like commercial charts: integrated added data ranging from port info to photo maps, all-on-a-card convenience, and near global coverage with the same format. Plus they’ve gotten much less expensive, thanks in part to NOAA!

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