Wednesday, March 24, 2010


Summer Place now has an Autopilot with wireless remote. (Raymarine X5/S100)

Installation is bolt-on simple owing to the elimination of the rudder position sensor from the previous (S-1) model.

I would have preferred a below-decks unit to avoid the wheel-mounted actuator but at triple the cost, I couldn't justify it for the inland use the boat will have.

The remote allows steering from any position on board.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Electronics Refit

I decided to rearrange the navigation electronics on Summer Place. The goal is to open up the view at the helm.

After removing the electronics console and cup holders that came with the boat. I needed a simple mount for the GPS/chartplotter. It had to allow the GPS to be rotated to any angle because when the weather is bad, I stand under the dodger and steer with the autopilot remote control or when sailing, I like to sit on the leeward coaming.

The mount is cut from 3/4" Starboard. 1 1/4" holes engage the pedestal guard and the mount is held in place with 1/4" nylon set screws. A 5/16" diameter thumbscrew can be eased off which allows the GPS to rotate.

The radar display was moved to the nav station below decks. I'm comfortable running in low/no visibility with chartplotter alone except in areas where ships and ferries also operate. With the display mounted below, targets can be spotted by crew, or when single-handing, with a quick step below for a look at the radar picture.

Cockpit Table

A must-have accessory for me is a cockpit table. Many of them are available to buy for lots of money but none that meet all my requirements. So I decided to make my own -- again.

My basic requirement is to have a table that can be used while operating the boat and not interfere with movement about the cockpit.

The table will be an improvement of the one we had on the Nonsuch 26 (photos) with the main difference being material. The previous version was built of plywood with Formica laminate and teak trim. This one is built of white Starboard, a solid plastic composite, and teak trim.

The small "day-use" table remains attached to the pedestal all the time. If a larger table is desired for cockpit dining or socializing, a clamp-on leaf is available. The larger leaf (about 24" x 30") is stowed away when not in use.

Since the cockpit/helm arrangement on Summer Place is different than the Nonsuch 26, I decided to build a prototype out of some scrap plywood.


click here to see more pics