Helm improvements….

We have discussed how we changed the Mariadz navigation to update it and added in Forward Facing Sonar.  With Maria at the helm when we come into bays and marinas, the use of the FFS may be limited by Maria’s ability to see anything 😉 So we have added a small plotter on the helm which will display this output so that Maria has a complete view of what is going on in front of Mariadz.

This of course presented problems with space since the steering column was quite full already and also had a radio stand right next to the compass which old steeringof course throws the compass off 😦 . we looked at the design of the standard steering column and were a little confused. Engine hours is important to keep an eye on but does this really need to be on the helm? We decided to move it down below. There were also some redundant switches.  By carefully rearranging the steering column, with Olly from Seapower’s help, we were able to come up with a better design that also fitted in the chartplotter and the control panel for the Forward Facing Sonar.  The radio bracket has been moved helmaway from the compass and the new remote control for the autopilot has also been mounted on the pedestal. Another change was removing the standard key to start and replacing with two buttons.  At the end of the day the keys are all standard and so add no security but can handily (?) break off in the ignition at times.  We just need to make sure that the ignition is switched off from the master control down below to avoid someone taking Mariadz away.  Finally we added LED lights to light up the table when needed.

We are very happy with the results – now to take her down the river and try out the new toys 🙂

Please also note the hand-stitched leather steering wheel cover that Maria and I did with our own fair hands – we don’t make other people do ALL the work 🙂

3 thoughts on “Helm improvements….”

  1. The FFS is of no use in marina’s. Definately none at all for berthing.
    Ideal for working through reefs or anchoring but I’m afraid has severe limits.
    You’d be better buying a step or stool for the short crew members to stand on.

  2. Hi. No we didn’t get forward facing sonar for the marinas but for when we go around the world and are, as you say, going through reefs. I recognise that it isn’t perfect but thought with potential inaccuracies on charts, particularly in the Pacific, it would provide some additional information that may help. Hopefully tell us we are going to hit something before we hit something rather than just afterwards.

  3. I would also like to add it has nothing to do with a persons height to see what’s coming up ahead of you.

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