Mar and Gar's Adventures

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Plug and Play

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Why is it called Plug and Play when that rarely happens? On the 23rd while anchored in Blunden Harbor our gps to our Nobeltec navigation program quit working. Luckily we know a Nobeltec expert ( that is you, Simon) and with one bar cell service we were able to text back and forth and test lots of different things. The end result was that the actual gps antenna had probably died. Well, crap-a-doodle. We also have another brand fishfinder/plotter than can be used for navigating but it has very poor detail. I then remembered I had an app on my iPad called SeaNav. I was able to purchase and download Canadian charts and decided it was better than nothing. There is always paper charts and radar but you get amazingly spoiled by technology and feel so much safer when in tricky areas.

Anyway, we had to go back to Pt. McNeill for different/additional antibiotics for me unexpectedly so checked around and up in Pt. Hardy at Stryker Marine they had a Nobeltec plug and play gps that just plugs in a USB port and you follow the installation wizard and all is good. NOT!

But first we have to figure out how to get the device. A taxi ride to Pt. Hardy was going to be about $55 each way. There is bus service and we were leaning toward that but then wonderful Emma at the Pt. McNeill Harbor marina- where we were staying- said she lived in Pt. Hardy and she would pick it up for us and we could get it the next morning at the marina office. Woo hoo!!

So the next morning I got the package and opened it. Our first problem is that you have to download drivers to your computer for it to work. Well, the computer on the boat is a dumb computer. No wifi or internet capability. We use it just for navigation. Back to asking Simon. He says no problem. Go buy a cheapy $20 thumb drive (aka do-hickey) and find a place that will download the drivers, save it to the thumb drive then put it on our dumb computer. Of course I have lots of thumb drives at home but now I have a really cute one with the Canadian flag on it.

We lucked out again with the marina staff. Michael knows all bunches of techie stuff so he was quickly able to do what we needed. Off to the boat I go. Except when we plugged it in it gave an error message and would not download the drivers. Back to Simon. He suggested contacting Nobeltec which made the device. They no longer do support for their navigation program but they do offer support for their gps and he thought they could help me with the problem.

Again, we lucked out. I got a nice young man named Lucas. He had me try several things and it still would not work. Then I mentioned that we were running Windows XP. Oops! This won’t work on XP. Wrong drivers. We bought a newer version …if it had been an old version sitting on the shelf and not sold for quite awhile it would have the correct drivers. He put me on hold and found someone who did some digging and was able to find the drivers needed for Windows XP. They emailed me a link. Now I am back to the office and Michael. I sign into my email and he downloads the drivers to my thumb drive and back to the boat I go. By the way, it is a loooong walk to the boat and it is extremely low tide so the ramp is really steep. I am getting my exercise.

I am able to successfully download the drivers. Now what? The plug and play instructions sounded so simple but it did not make sense. Another call to Simon. The problem was that the device was using different terminology for the actual install. This is because Nobeltec now is going to something called TimeZero so what they said to click on didn’t quite match. Simon became my personal wizard. He had me do 3 steps and boom! We had gps! The chart now showed us in Pt. McNeill instead of Blunden!!! YAY!

So our plug and play took 3 hours but it was worth it! Once again, our heros are Emma, Michael and especially Simon! !

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2 thoughts on “Plug and Play

  1. Glad you got your electronics issue worked out. Wondering where you are st or headed. We are headed to Pt McNeill in the morning and then Skull Island tomorrow and then Burnett’s (sp??) the day after, all weather dependent of course.

  2. You’re going to have to learn how to use a sextant :-)…Jim

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