The direction and speed of the wind are not only important pieces of information when maneuvering in close quarters, they're also a tip-off to weather changes. Tacktick makes it easy to get precise wind information—and most any other numerical data—anywhere you want it on your boat. For instance, this $1,500 Micronet Power Boat Wind system is extraordinarily simple to install because the sensor and the display are each solar-powered (and waterproof), and they communicate wirelessly. You could, say, unclip the display from its small bracket near your main helm and reclip it up on a tuna tower or at an aft docking station. And Tacktick is about much more than just wind, offering a variety of wireless displays in three colors and additional sensors like depth, speed, heading, and GPS. There's also an NMEA 0183 interface box that can deliver Tacktick data to your regular navigation system and/or put nav data like waypoint bearing and range on most any Tacktick display, including the remote shown. I experimented with all these possibilities and was impressed with how well it all worked and how well it's all built.
This article originally appeared in the December 2007 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.