Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 01-07-2016, 04:06 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
bikeandboat's Avatar
 
City: Maumelle, AR
Country: United States
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 106
simple autopilot for single diesel trawler

We have a single diesel 34' Albin and would like to add a simple auto pilot. We do not want to integrate with other items, such as GPS or radar. Any suggestions as to manufacturer or model? Hynautic steering system.
__________________
Advertisement

bikeandboat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2016, 05:29 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Old deckhand's Avatar
 
City: Sitka
Country: Same
Vessel Model: Transpacific Marine Eagle 32
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 497
ComNav has a very simple model and is very popular and well supported. You may wish to consider an autopilot that is well supported in you region.
__________________

Old deckhand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2016, 06:03 PM   #3
Guru
 
djmarchand's Avatar
 
City: East Greenwich, RI
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Bella
Vessel Model: Mainship Pilot 34
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 2,889
There are three parts to an autopilot system for your boat:

1. A control head where you enter course and turns

2. A course computer that mounts someplace out of sight and drives the pump below. These usually have 2-3 sizes depending on drive current which is dependent on the size of boat. A fluxgate compass connects to the course computer. The fluxgate provides heading information to the course computer.

3. A hydraulic pump that ties into your hydraulic steering. It is driven by the course computer and needs to be matched for drive capability. These come in a couple of sizes dependent on your steering hydraulic ram size.

I would pick one of the big 3: Raymarine, Garmin or Simrad. Look at the displays of each and pick the one you like best. All are good and are priced similarly.

David
djmarchand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2016, 06:23 PM   #4
Guru
 
TDunn's Avatar
 
City: Maine Coast
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Tortuga
Vessel Model: Nunes Brothers Raised Deck Cruiser
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 672
I agree go with Raymarine, Garmin or Simrad. I would pick based on whose other electronics I liked best. Any of the above are NMEA 2000 compatible so in the future it will be easy to interface the autopilot if you decide you want to. Just think in 5 years or less if you interface the auto pilot you will be able to run the boat from your iphone from the office while viewing full video in a separate window. No need to actually go to the marina to take the boat out
TDunn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 06:46 AM   #5
FF
Guru
 
FF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 16,537
Depends what you require from the AP setup.

If you want to spend time pre programming every turn on your next summer vacation the usual choices will do.

If your hyd steering is fairly fresh and in good condition a wheel mounted unit would be cheap and have the least complexity to install, and maintain.

The hassle is the hyd steering does not have a fixed center as chain & cable or rods or even a push pull cable has. After a while ( 10-15 min on an old leaky setup half hour+ on new) the unit will need to be reset.

If you just want it to steer to the next turn , where you will set the next course it would be fine.

Hooking it to a GPS and expecting it to navigate a cruise will not be fine.
FF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 06:53 AM   #6
Guru
 
City: kemah
Country: USA
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 997
calibrate your compass and then hook a bungy cord to the wheel.
what_barnacles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 07:23 AM   #7
Dauntless Award
 
Wxx3's Avatar
 
City: New York, NY
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Dauntless
Vessel Model: Kadey Krogen 42 - 148
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 2,313
Quote:
Originally Posted by Old deckhand View Post
ComNav has a very simple model and is very popular and well supported. You may wish to consider an autopilot that is well supported in you region.
ComNav.

A simple hydralic system. Works for weeks on end, 24/7.

It got us across the Atlantic.

I am not a paid spokeperson; though I should be
__________________
M/Y Dauntless, New York
a Kadey Krogen 42 Currently https://share.delorme.com/dauntless
Blog: https://dauntlessatsea.com
Find us: https://share.delorme.com/dauntless
Wxx3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 07:25 AM   #8
Dauntless Award
 
Wxx3's Avatar
 
City: New York, NY
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Dauntless
Vessel Model: Kadey Krogen 42 - 148
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 2,313
Quote:
Originally Posted by what_barnacles View Post
calibrate your compass and then hook a bungy cord to the wheel.
Sad to say, that doesn't work.

I tried.
__________________
M/Y Dauntless, New York
a Kadey Krogen 42 Currently https://share.delorme.com/dauntless
Blog: https://dauntlessatsea.com
Find us: https://share.delorme.com/dauntless
Wxx3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 07:28 AM   #9
Guru
 
jleonard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 2,740
Look at Sitex SP-70. Really simple and easy to use. Runs my 40 Albin quite nicely in most conditions.
And I am integrated to my Garmin GPS. I don't always navigate to a waypoint, but I think that is one of the best features of having an autopilot.
No intentions of starting a war on that issue, just sayin'
__________________
Jay Leonard
Attitude Adjustment
40 Albin
Mystic,Ct. /New Port Richey,Fl
jleonard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 09:01 AM   #10
Guru
 
Tom.B's Avatar
 
City: Cary, NC
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Skinny Dippin'
Vessel Model: Navigator 4200 Classic
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 5,158
Quote:
Originally Posted by jleonard View Post
Look at Sitex SP-70. Really simple and easy to use.
Si-Tex/Com Nav meets your criteria. This is a fabulous system that has been around for a long time and has proven itself in a lot of different kinds of boats. It's easy (ish) to install (although, like any, there are a lot of wires) and the interface is clear and simple. The best thing is that this unit hasn't been caught up in the software arms race that companies like Garmin or Raymarine are in. If you want to be able to write your name in the river, execute search patterns for the Navy, or watch Game Of Thrones on the display, then these units are for you. But the Si-Tex (which is a rebranded Com Nav) is at the end of its development life and is as good as you can get from an easy to used and install unit. Another huge benefit is that to add a second station doesn't require another expensive head unit. All you need is their $50 plug to mount at an auxiliary helm.

I would suggest you call them and discuss your needs. They will spend all the time you need to help you understand the unit and help with any questions you may have during the install. I was super happy (as if that is in any question here) and miss having it on our new boat.
__________________
2000 Navigator 4200 Classic
(NOT a trawler)
Tom.B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 10:28 AM   #11
Veteran Member
 
City: Seattle, WA
Country: USA
Vessel Model: Willard 47' Dover Trawler
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 94
Garmin !!

I have both Comnav and Garmin Autopilots on the same boat. I added the Garmin both for redundancy and because the Comnav would just not perform to my expectations (I had a Simrad on another boat and I trusted that one to steer me into Gig Harbor - with my hand near the controls!).

The Comnav is now strictly a backup unit (and rudder angle indicator). There is simply no comparison in their performance. The Garmin mostly keeps the crosstrack error less than ten or twenty feet, even with big cross currents. Unlike the Comnav it requires no adjusting and tunes itself to the conditions.

I believe that any of the major manufacturers (Simrad, Raymarine, and Furuno) have autopilots with similar smarts. In my opinion, the Comnav is just primitive by comparison.
SteveD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 10:50 AM   #12
Guru
 
City: Carefree, Arizona
Country: usa
Vessel Name: sunchaser V
Vessel Model: DeFever 48
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 6,380
Steve D

Did you keep the same steering pump or put in a new and or additional unit? If new, same size or greater capacity?

Like many, I am a Furuno fan and would likely go that way if I choose to twin the existing older Simrad AP20.
sunchaser is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 10:58 AM   #13
Guru
 
Ski in NC's Avatar
 
City: Wilmington, NC
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Louisa
Vessel Model: Custom Built 38
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 3,892
Check with electronics installers in your area. Lots of boats upgrade to the new whiz-bang electronics with cartoons and have perfectly functioning units removed. Might be able to score a good unit that way without having to pay retail.

I use an old skool Simrad AP35, it does a nice job. I use it all the time even when in the ICW. I don't bother with waypoints even though it is connected to the gps. I just point it where I want to go and tweak as needed. Someone has to be at the helm anyway, might as well do something.
Ski in NC is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 11:51 AM   #14
Veteran Member
 
City: Seattle, WA
Country: USA
Vessel Model: Willard 47' Dover Trawler
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 94
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunchaser View Post
Steve D

Did you keep the same steering pump or put in a new and or additional unit? If new, same size or greater capacity?
The Garmin requires their own pump. Most other brands do not. But I wanted the pump in the engine room and I wanted two, in case one failed.

By the way, unless you like the sound of squealing cats, it is best to locate autopilot pumps as far away from your steering station as is practical.
SteveD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 01:12 PM   #15
Guru
 
Tom.B's Avatar
 
City: Cary, NC
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Skinny Dippin'
Vessel Model: Navigator 4200 Classic
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 5,158
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveD View Post
By the way, unless you like the sound of squealing cats, it is best to locate autopilot pumps as far away from your steering station as is practical.
In the master stateroom bathroom, our AP pump sounds like a quacking duck! It took us a while to figure out what was making that sound. Bess figured it out. The bath is right under the lower helm.
__________________
2000 Navigator 4200 Classic
(NOT a trawler)
Tom.B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 01:16 PM   #16
Guru
 
Ski in NC's Avatar
 
City: Wilmington, NC
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Louisa
Vessel Model: Custom Built 38
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 3,892
I mounted my pump in the ER on an AL angle bracket with resilient mounts attaching it to the hull structure. I think the pump is on resilient mounts too, can't remember. No sound from the pump anywhere in the boat, especially at the helm.

But I have been on boats where the pump noise is horrible. Especially if mounted on the bridge where ambient noise level is very low. Put pump in ER.
Ski in NC is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 01:40 PM   #17
Guru
 
psneeld's Avatar
 
City: Avalon, NJ
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Freedom
Vessel Model: Albin 40
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 15,938
wow...my AP pump is right over my head under the flybridge fairing and I can hardly hear it with the engine running....

I know hydraulic pumps make a lot of noise but usually an AP pump only runs for a half second or so every few seconds....more like a good burp....unless there is a fluid problem.
psneeld is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 05:03 PM   #18
Guru
 
Ski in NC's Avatar
 
City: Wilmington, NC
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Louisa
Vessel Model: Custom Built 38
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 3,892
Maybe you are just accustomed to the sound of "burps"??
Ski in NC is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 05:10 PM   #19
Guru
 
psneeld's Avatar
 
City: Avalon, NJ
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Freedom
Vessel Model: Albin 40
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 15,938
You never know who might drink beer aboard my boat....
psneeld is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2016, 08:00 PM   #20
Guru
 
Sailor of Fortune's Avatar
 
City: Saint Augustine, Fl.
Country: Port of St Augustine ,FL
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 1,974
Comnav or Sitex (I think they are about the same thing), bullet proof, no frills crewmember who doesn't eat, drink, smoke or bitch. They also steer a better course than you (or at least me).
__________________

Sailor of Fortune is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:33 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012