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Ease/Difficulty Switching Out GPS/Fish Finder

890 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  hipshot
I've seen several boats for sale I've really like for purchase BUT they have Garmins. From all I've read for SWFL use, I'd be a fool not to have Florida Marine Tracks. How easy is it to hook up a new system if the boat's already been drilled and set up for the electronics?
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I would not pass up a great skiff because I didn't like the electronics. It's not like you're switching out 3 MFDs and radar. Electronics are outdated in 4 years anyway and you're buying a used boat. You can buy a new Simrad 9" for less than $2K.

Would you buy a flats boat if it didn't have a power pole or was missing a trolling motor? For the same money you can replace the Garmin with your choice of brand new chartplotter.
^agree^ I bought my current boat with a Garmin coming from FMT and Lowrance. I’ve ran at night with it in Miami and caught fish with it till I found the Lowrance I wanted on sale. I would focus more on looking for a skiff with the layout you like since that is very difficult to change. GPS installs are pretty easy IMHO unless you are flush mounting. Also, look for deals on free installs when you purchase a new unit.
Swapping out the unit should be fairly simple. If the transducer is epoxied in to the hull you’ll have to put in a bit of work to swap it out, but it’s nothing really complicated. Same for the wiring / cables; depending on how they were routed you may need to put a little effort into the swap, but it’s all straightforward stuff. Unless the unit is flush-mounted in the console, that part is easy.
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