Calypso was equipped from the Antares factory with a complete set of Furuno navigation equipment. It's served us well over the years but time and the saltwater environment take their toll on all things.
As one of our viewers once said, the only thing saltwater doesn't mess up is a fish.
Our radar started to be intermittent, only working when we didn't need it. Should we need it, however, boom! Radar lost. One of our two main chart plotters began to malfunction and so on. We'd complete repairs but we knew the time was coming for replacements.
After some research, we decided that we should replace everything. If we were doing that, we might as well go with a different brand of equipment. That decision was based on a few things:
One of which was due to Furuno changing their gear, the new models wouldn't fit anymore.
We weren't happy with Furunos service. Although we hear B&G's service is terrible too so that cancels itself out, if so.
We knew that if we continued to replace parts here and there, we'd continue to have issues with the older equipment. We wanted a fresh start.
New gear would give the boat a fresh feel.
The new helm on Calypso features new Zues 3s plotters and Triton2 displays.
The brand selection was our next step. We considered every brand out there, asked friends, other boat owners, etc...Most of them were happy with their current setup, no matter which brand they had. So it was just up to personal preference. We decided to purchase B&G equipment due to their relation to sailing, the units have a super cool look to them and there are lots of bells and whistles to play with.
Dave and Jim at Marine Craft completed the installation which involved some modifications. One of which was the helm. The old Furuno plotters were 14" and the new B&G Zeus 3s plotters were 12", that difference left a gap. So Jim fabricated a nice new bracket to hold the new plotters in place.
The new install with the new frame around each of the new plotters. Seen here in black.
Those Zues 3s plotters along with the three new Triton2 displays help the helm look amazing! The new equipment is so functional and fun to use! With the helm looking sweet, it was time to go inside for some work on the navigation station.
The vessel and the required mess of new parts, old parts and tools for a job this large.
The navigation station was about to get a makeover. New equipment, including some changes to the setup was about to take place.
Halo 20+ radar antenna before installation and the nav station in work.
B&G V60-B VHF and AIS unit before installation.
We replaced an outdated AIS with a 9" Vulcan chart plotter. We asked that the new plotter be angled towards the chair, Jim fabricated a sweet mount that you can see here (left side plotter) which does just that. We also mounted a Autopilot Keypad, Triton2 display and a V60-B VHF and AIS transmitter/receiver to the nav station.
Calypso's completed Navigation Station.
Left in place were the Victron battery monitor, SSB and modem. There's debate if SSB is really necessary anymore aboard cruising vessels. New technology such as sat gear, like Starlink, might make it seem unnecessary but we think that it's worth keeping on the boat just in the event of some massive failure. Who knows...
We love the new layout of both the helm and nav station and we couldn't be happier with the equipment itself! One thing that we have to mention is how well Jim was able to match Calypso's wood coloring for the new plotter mount and for the VHF mount you see here. Amazing workmanship. Once the installation was complete, we took Calypso out for a sea trial where we calibrated the GPS and autopilot. This was a great time for Jeremiah to try out the gear and for the guys at Marine Craft to give some pointers on operating it.
Jim and Jeremiah at the helm during the sea trial.