The goal of SailBits is to tell a story about how technology and boating work together, to share ideas about projects, and help others learn from the experience.

MikroTik Groove step-by-step setup guide

August 30, 2018 | 17 Comments
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Setting up the MikroTik Groove to boost WiFi on your boat can be daunting. With a few quick steps you can get the Groove up and running quickly on your network.

Correcting the list – LiFePO4 power system design

August 15, 2018 | 38 Comments
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Due to weight and features, I decided to convert my sailboat power system to LiFePO4. This article covers the design which settled on Victron components.

Conquer seasickness with a ReliefBand

June 28, 2018 | 0 Comments
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Since as long as I can remember, I’ve gotten motion sick on airplanes, in cars, and on boats. I have tried many different solutions to help reduce how sick I get, and the one that has worked for 15+ years for me reliably and easily is the ReliefBand.

Improvements with a new propeller

June 8, 2018 | 8 Comments
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Grace came with a factory prop when I purchased her – it was OK, but after 3 years of using that prop, I felt that I could get better speed and potentially other benefits.

Major mast work

June 4, 2018 | 15 Comments
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In the last year I have had a number of issues with items in or on Grace’s mast. During a recent trip to Blake Island, the anchor light stopped working, and that was the last straw. It was time to dig deeper into fixing all of the issues.

Modular, cheaper boat internet solution via Netgear and MikroTik

May 28, 2018 | 88 Comments
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I’ve written a lot about my boat network, and in particular, Peplink products that offer a ton of functionality and features. For the last 6 months, I have been playing with configurations and hardware that cost less, but still provide flexibility and features that more expensive solutions offer.

Using an Intel NUC as a powerful boat server

April 28, 2018 | 10 Comments
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For years I have had a dedicated linux machine on my sailboats centered around remote monitoring and stats gathering. I have a fairly well developed set of tools from SignalK, Zabbix, Grafana and others that help keep an eye on the boat while I am on board, and away. I have been using a Raspberry Pi computer to enable this, but in the last few months it has proven to be too underpowered to keep up. My search began for a better solution…

A tale of two sails

April 18, 2018 | 14 Comments
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This last week I took Grace out on the water twice after a ton of winter projects. The first time was a beautiful, warm day with wind and real sailing. The second time was the rainiest April day on record in 22 years in Seattle, and turned out quite a bit different.

SailBits and Panbo team up for Marine Electronics Forums

April 17, 2018 | 6 Comments
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For the last year or so, I have wanted to build a community focused on marine electronics, networking and technology on boats. In recent discussions with my industry peers at Panbo, I realized they were updating their site, and we thought it would be great to collaborate on a dedicated community forum for this purpose.

Raymarine Lighthouse v3.4 – apps, bluetooth, find nearest, and more

April 12, 2018 | 4 Comments
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Raymarine continues their updates for Lighthouse with version 3.4 which includes a number of new features, bug fixes, and features that we had in version II. The most exciting addition is apps for Netflix, Spotify and Theyr, and the promise of even more in the future.

Best LTE antenna and booster for the boat

April 10, 2018 | 116 Comments
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For almost two years I have been testing, re-testing, and re-wiring my setup on Grace in an effort to find the best LTE antenna configuration. I don’t remember another project I worked on that took so much time and effort to gather data. The search for a good antenna system led to some surprising choices.

Nemo gateway – easy NMEA networking for your boat

March 14, 2018 | 39 Comments
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Connecting marine electronics together is an important goal for modern boaters. The Nemo gateway from Rose Point is an easy way to connect everything together, while also easily providing high quality, frequent data to a number of sources.