“To get used to radar and comfortable in using it, I always encourage people to turn their radar on the minute they get aboard their boat and before they leave the dock, even if the weather’s perfect. Being able to practice how to operate and see whether the radar image matches what you can see visually is how you build your confidence and start to trust your system for when the weather isn’t so benign, or when night falls.”
While it is best to get to know your radar on board your boat in its normal environment, there are still ways that you can build familiarity and confidence while you are ashore as Navico® Product Expert Craig McMillan explains.
“Firstly, for those that can’t take their boats out or have them on the driveway at home, it is worth noting that it is fine to operate the radar in these situations as the power output is low so they are safe to use,” he says. “So you don’t need to worry about radiation or emissions in your driveway or down at the marina.”
“This means that you can get used to some of the basic functions. Of course, if you’re on your driveway with targets all around you and probably at close range, the picture is going to be rather different to what you’d normally expect to see afloat, but it’s still good practice and will help you to get familiar with the controls.”
“If you’ve taken the MFD (Multi Function Display) off the boat and taken it home, then you can still practice operating the radar on the MFD in your lounge using the internal simulation that’s included. Yes, this is limited compared to what’s available when the unit is installed and afloat, but it can still be pretty useful.”
For those starting from scratch and getting used to their radars for the first time, Laurie has some tips for helping to get up to speed without getting overwhelmed by the variety of functions.