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 Auto Pilot choices?
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Author Previous Topic: BILLV Topic Next Topic: FYI False creek Vancouver BC  

BillV

RO# 17370

Posted - Apr 14 2011 :  23:47:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Have considered installing an auto pilot for use on my trip north in 2012. Looking at cruising around 8-9 knots and would like something I can install myself and not break the bank while I do it. Is an AP a worthwhile add on. Figured those that have cruised long distances could shed some light on the subject.
1978 Glasply 28' mid-cabin, repowered, remodeled, rewired, rebuilt, replaced, repaired, oh well you get the picture! It's my full time job now that I'm retired.

Homeport: Lynden, WA

NewMoon

RO# 29151

Posted - Apr 15 2011 :  07:26:31  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
After many trips through the often narrow channels of the Inside Passage sharing helm duty with my wife, I'd have said an autopilot is useful mainly for running into floating logs etc.

But since I've spent a good part of the last few summers cruising single-handed, I'd sometimes like to have one - much easier to grab lunch while still moving, for instance. Still have to maintain that lookout, however. It's also good for steering a reasonably strait course in the fog, or for just giving your hands a rest from always being on the wheel.


Richard Cook
New Moon (Bounty 257)
"Cruising in a Big Way"

Homeport: Holladay, UT Go to Top of Page

abalmuth

RO# 13885



Posted - Apr 15 2011 :  07:48:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
On longer trips I find it very useful.
When dialed in right it will track much truer that you and you can multi-function far better/safer with the AP.



Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright
until you hear them speak.........

Homeport: Long Island, NY Go to Top of Page

Wingspar

RO# 1979

Posted - Apr 15 2011 :  08:56:05  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
To me it's almost a must have. First it will just about pay for itself by fuel savings especially when teamed up with a GPS to provide tracking control. Second, it frees you up to manage all the boat systems better by not having to constantly steer. You arrive at your desination more refreshed.

I've only bought Raymarines pilots and have installed them myslef.

Dave

Dave



Homeport: Semiahmoo, WA Go to Top of Page

folieadeux

RO# 27326

Posted - Apr 15 2011 :  15:03:03  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I like my Simrad auto-pilot, it works great. I just upgraded by Northstar GPS system and networked the Simrad to the GPS and it is cool. It will now steer a route based on the waypoints in the GPS. That takes a little getting used to when your boat starts makes turns on it own !

Neal and Barbara
Savannah,GA
"Olive or Twist" 2006 Meridian 391 T-Cummins 380QSB, Onan 9K

Homeport: Savannah.GA Go to Top of Page

BillV

RO# 17370

Posted - Apr 17 2011 :  10:09:42  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Appreciate all the replies. I'm now in the process of researching the many different brands. Sure a lot of range in prices. Raymarine looks like a good reasonable priced unit. The Simrad looks good too. I've got to find out whether or not I will have issues networking an AP to my Lowrance GPS and if that is an issue then my Furuno Radar that I've added a GPS input to it.

1978 Glasply 28' mid-cabin, repowered, remodeled, rewired, rebuilt, replaced, repaired, oh well you get the picture! It's my full time job now that I'm retired.

Homeport: Lynden, WA Go to Top of Page

caltexfla

RO# 14522

Posted - Apr 17 2011 :  12:21:10  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Up in that part of the world also take a close look at the Canadian Comnavs from BC. They come in all price ranges and are common on commercial boats. I used one on a Grand Banks we chartered and it was the easiest to use AP I've come across (Robertson,SimRad, RayMarine et al). Give them a call; they were very helpful when I was considering replacing my old Robertson.




Homeport: Wherever Go to Top of Page
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