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hi i have been fishing in boats for 30 yrs but want to get to know about gps and finding marks out at sea i have looked at a couple but they look so complicated i have my own boat and go quite regular does anyone know of any courses i can take in the kent area or anyone wants to give me some lessons i live in herne bay any advise would be grateful cheers

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Guest stevie cop

The modern GPS is a complicated bit of kit. They have so many functions that you'll probably never use, so I'd just learn the ones that will be of use to you.


Most of them have a simulation mode where you can see what they do as you read the instructions from the manual.


I only use a few of the functions on mine. I can enter the Long and Lat numbers to create a waypoint. I can enter a waypoint to go to a mark that I've entered. The trackback, (or is it backtrack?), is a good function so I've learned to use that! MOB, (man over board), is essential to learn. Not only in case someone falls overboard, but for getting an instant fix on a mark whilst fishing. You could find a wreck on your fish finder and hit the MOB button, then you'd have it's exact position logged.


I don't use the route function. I prefer to travel to various waypoints one at a time whilst checking progress on the chart. That way, I know roughly where I am all the time, just in case the thing packs up! Most of the time you can see where you have to go back to, but if the fog came down you'd need to use your list of waypoints, so I've got a list of navigation bouys that lead back the launching ramp entered as waypoints.


They display a lot of useful information automatically on most pages. Things like speed over ground, travelling time in minutes, etc.


Complicated as they are, you could learn the basics in a few hours. It takes considerably longer to learn basic navigation without the GPS!


[ 28. June 2005, 08:45 PM: Message edited by: Steve Coppolo ]

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does anyone know of any courses i can take in the kent area or anyone wants to give me some lessons i live in herne bay any advise would be grateful cheers

Many local places will run electronic navigation courses covering different bits of kit but I have never been on one. The manuals supplied with modern GPS systems are written for complete numpties so you could do worse than begging or borrowing one and just sitting down with a tin or two and reading it cover to cover. If you know how to naviagate without a gps, then understanding a gps is a doddle. You may even be able to download a manual from the manufacturers web site - I have done that with other kit so you probably can for a gps too.

East Hampshire Boat Anglers www.boat-angling.co.uk

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Guest sandpipper

Hi all, I fish a lot of wrecks along the south coast and wouldnt be without mine after trying to find my way home in thick fog one day, i found the best thing to do was set your gps up indoors and play with it you cant break them by playing,all of them have foctory restore so you can reset it if you muck it up,if you can opperate a mobile phone you can set up a gps. The hardest bit is finding all the wrecks, go here to find wrecks in your local waters http://users.pandora.be/tree/wreck/

cut and paste this but dont tell everyone.Tony

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Personally, I'd love to get a plotter.


I know that the traditionalists will say it's lazy, but they're a great bit of kit :)

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I was out last night in a tricky piece of water in misty and drizzly conditions. There were two boats, my 13ft dory and my mates 22ft old wooden thing.


We set out through a narrow and potentially dangerous navigation channel and as soon as I cleared it, I marked it on my GPS. We turned down the South East side of Stronsay across a large open bay to the mark we were heading for. We cleared a dangerous skerry and I marked this as well. We fished for awhile catching Mackerel and Pollock but the mist turned to thick fog (Down to about 100 yards visibility) so we decided to head back.


I headed to my GPS marks and the other man followed his GPS route. Because of the size of the bay and the slowness of the other boat, we were out of sight of land for some 15 minutes, if we missed land and turned East our next port of call would have been Southern Norway, if we turned West we were on another reef or wandering around a large bay.


Thanks to the GPS's we found land just by the East entry and came home safely.


Last year I was out with a very experienced creel boat and we had to get from one small island to another (Taking a map man out for a survey), not more than a quarter of a mile apart. I bowed to his Superior knowledge of the area and we missed the island and ended up in a on another island and had to track back (We were working by compass and a bearing from the skippers experience of fishing these waters for 30 years).


Do buy a GPS and get to know it ASAP, they are great tools and very cheap compared to getting lost at sea.




PS For your info my GPS is a Lowrance M52 (£200) combined GPS and fish finder. The other boat had a Garmin handheld GPS (£120).

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Guest sandpipper

Hi all I bought my gear from a guy that sells from home over the years ive got a lot of electrics from him and the back up from is seconed to none, he works from word of mouth.Take a lot at his web site,if you contact him he sometimes has old stock thats a lot cheaper, the only time ive paid full price for anything is when he has to buy it for me ie cmaps.tony


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