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It is not likely you will purchase a boat fitted to your exact needs.
Fitting out a small or mid-size boat can be challenging. Lay out a plan before you begin. Important factors include available space and the effects pieces of equipment have on one another.

When installing a GPS, depth sounder or compass, locate them in a direct line of sight. Consider the effects of the area where you mount them. Metals nearby or electronics such as switches or instruments may cause your compass to read improperly. Hold it away from any object that may affect its ability to read the direction indicated. While observing, slowly set it in the intended mounting area and switch on each nearby instrument while observing the compass. Determine if there is any magnetic effect. Remember, in order to check any electrical unit, it must be turned on. Use caution when mounting speakers as many contain strong magnets that can affect other equipment.

Once you locate a good position and mount your compass, you can start adding other electronics or metal accessories, checking each one to be sure you don’t create a magnetic effect on the compass. Electronics are “generally” accurate and reliable. When they fail, and they do, it is usually during bad weather when dependable direction finding is a must. An electrical failure can also take them out; therefore, a compass is still one of the most important items on any boat of any size.

Mounting and wiring depth sounders or fish finders in an area near a radio or wiring them to a common fuse block can create static noise when both are used simultaneously. All of these careful procedures should be taken before any cutting or drilling is done that may cause unsightly holes in your dash.

Many boats have fuse blocks or switches pre-installed for use with added accessories. Some electronics’ manufacturers recommend wiring directly to the battery. To accomplish this, first look for a wire loom or channel, then take a flexible snake, (often a retractable measuring tape will work) and run it through the wire area without forcing it. Once through, tie a string on the end of the snake and pull it back. Using the string fastened to the wire, gently pull the wire through; then tie on a second string with the wire so you can pull additional wire later. Be sure to leave extra string in the loom or wire channel.

Many extras such as cleats, seats, pole holders, tow eyes, etc. may need to be rigged. Mount with bolts, nuts and washers to avoid pulling out, which can damage the boat and the person using the item. When bolting through, use large size washers or a solid backing plate under the material.

A boat properly set up to meet multiple uses can be a boat able to fulfill on-the-water desires of each member of the family

United Marine Underwriters is more than just boat insurance. Browse our Boats For Sale at BoatBrowser or our Lake Resource Guide at LakeBrowser or share your fishing stories and photos at True Fish Tales – the ones that did not get away.

 
 
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