Going out to sea means you'll have to take along the proper equipment with you. If you don't have any idea what guides to follow in getting yourself a GPS chartplotter, no worries. Here's what you need to know:
What is it?
Let's get the basics out of the way, first: a chartplotter is basically a display of a specific chart. The GPS sensor, on the other hand, puts you right on the map. This makes it easy for you to plot a course and makes it handy for you to find an alternative route or a place you can drop anchor in order to avoid the worst of an incoming storm.
What to Look for
- Designed for marine use. Boating Mag says it's important to determine if the item has been specifically designed for general use or marine use. A device that's been designed to weather the rigors and stress of marine use will stand up better to the elements as well as provide you better service at sea.
- Nautical charts. Go for handhelds that come with marine charts. That's going to come in handy when you start looking for where all the fish have hidden away.
- Compatible with sonar. A lot of units these days come with sonar on board. In addition, the latest models of sonar devices are sure to be compatible with Wi-Fi, making it easy to display the information on your mobile, tablet, or LED screens.
- Water resistance. No one wants to buy a device that's going to die on them anytime soon. That's why it's crucial to find out if the unit you're buying is water resistant or not. After all, you'll be mounting that on an open boat. You want to make sure it can withstand the rigors of a marine setting. Check the Japanese Industry Standard rating to know if the unit qualifies or not.
- It's easy enough to monitor your course when you're out in the open sea with a chartplotter. So if you want to take a detour, that's simple enough to do with this device.
- Losing your way out there is dangerous and can lead to less than ideal circumstances. With this device, you won't have to worry about getting lost at sea.
Make sure you're safe out. Never head out without a GPS chartplotter on board.