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Old 03-09-2016, 07:02 PM   #81
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Ok, just to throw another horse into the race, has anyone used the Garmin system. They have an AP that will of course integrate with my 741xs chartplotter/depth sounder combo. You can also integrate radar, NMEA2000 and it has WIFI so you can use Laptop, Ipad and Android as secondary displays/controllers. I haven't priced the AP but looks like it could be a good system. The techs I've talked to have told me that Garmin is much better customer service wise than Raymarine.

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Old 03-09-2016, 07:12 PM   #82
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And I have heard the opposite about the 2 customer services....and was my experience as a tech years ago...


So like many other things about marine electronics these days...pick what you like...you can be happy as a clam or as disappointed as you can be...from purchase to reliability to customer service with any brand.

If any overriding factors were so clear...it would be well known.

Over the years I have heard customer and legacy support by Furuno may be tops....I have heard and agree that much of the Garmin equipment is the easiest to use, Raymarines' small RADARs had the edge for many years (4KW and below)....

So while their are favorites in some categories...they have Achilles heels in others.

Take your pick based on what you like and it helps if you have a local dealer in your corner.
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Old 03-09-2016, 08:06 PM   #83
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The offer was accepted, and the Simrad is on its way.

I looked at Garmin APs, since I have a Garmin MFD. All else being equal, it would have been my first choice, but a full system would have cost around $4 BU, comparable to a similar-capacity Raymarine. Sticker shock is what drove me to start this thread.

At this point I'm in a race with time, to get the boat outfitted for four months underway starting this spring. Hopefully I'll have a chance to get it all hooked up and report back here before I escape WiFi and cell data coverage.
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Old 03-09-2016, 08:12 PM   #84
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The offer was accepted, and the Simrad is on its way.
Congratulations and good luck with the install.
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Old 03-09-2016, 08:24 PM   #85
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Yes, let us know how the install goes.
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Old 03-27-2016, 12:21 AM   #86
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Just went through the entire post. Good info, a little long due to throwing in a custom built pilot. I have an ap16 with ac20 control pack. normal simrad rpu 160 pump. my ap16 screen went out. I wanted to add a second station control anyway. I figured, i would try the lowrance autopilot. (yes for outboards) It has been on the boat and working for a year now. I got the third or fourth one in the states. It hunts around a bit with a following sea, but i think i paid 750.00 for it from ultimatepassage. included the brain, 2k compass, pump, and all cables and connectors. I did not use the pump, i just connected it to my old simrad pump. It seems to get better with each firmware release lowrance kicks out for the HDS touch units. Basically, i control my autopilot from my hds touch series head units. Its just like zooming in on a chart, or pausing the sonar screen. It is not as good as my ap16, but then again i really have not dove into the settings too much either. Of course it is NOT supported by lowrance as they advertise it for a single engine outboard boat up to 200 hp. I am a 46 footer that pokes around about 10mph most of the time. Get a cable for your control head to the N2K network and you can cross display info and use your head unit to steer the boat! Good luck!
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:03 PM   #87
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I'm making good progress on the install, so I'm already looking at an upgrade.

Specifically, I'd like a remote. I can buy one for "only" $332.76:


It looks pretty easy to wire into the computer. Just four wires; ground, Port, Starboard and light:


But I got to thinking. I'd be OK without the light. So, why can't I just hook ANY switch up to those three remaining terminals?

Better yet, why not hook any WIRELESS REMOTE switch up to those three terminals?

Maybe like this one for $14.69:


Hmmm. $318.07 for a light. Doesn't sound like such a great deal any more.

Am I missing something?
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Old 04-15-2016, 12:10 AM   #88
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I have hooked up just a momentary switch. Worked great! So this should also work!
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Old 04-15-2016, 12:45 PM   #89
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I have hooked up just a momentary switch. Worked great! So this should also work!
Great, thanks!

Just to be clear, am I correct to assume the port or starboard terminals are shorted to ground (by the switch) to make it turn in that direction? I assume the terminal marked "light" is just that, and unrelated to the turn direction switch.
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Old 04-25-2016, 04:14 PM   #90
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Just to be clear, am I correct to assume the port or starboard terminals are shorted to ground (by the switch) to make it turn in that direction? I assume the terminal marked "light" is just that, and unrelated to the turn direction switch.
I answered my own question:


It turns out my assumption was correct. This time. But you know what happens when you assume.

The "Mode" button (connect both port and starboard terminals to ground) switches to Standby mode. Obviously not real helpful if I'm not at the helm and ready to take the wheel, so I'll have to live without that function.
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Old 04-25-2016, 05:35 PM   #91
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I answered my own question:

It turns out my assumption was correct. This time. But you know what happens when you assume.

The "Mode" button (connect both port and starboard terminals to ground) switches to Standby mode. Obviously not real helpful if I'm not at the helm and ready to take the wheel, so I'll have to live without that function.
Tom,

The "Mode" button on the R3000X Remote Control does a little more than just but the system in "Standby" mode.

If your initial mode is STBY (where you can steer with the Port and Stbd buttons), the first press places the A/P in "AUTO" mode on your present heading. The second press places it back in "STBY" mode.

If your initial mode is "AUTO", the first press places the A/P in "STBY" (where you can steer with the Port and Stbd buttons). The second press places the A/P back in "AUTO" mode on your present heading.

If your initial mode is "NAV", the first press places the A/P in "STBY" (where you can steer with the Port and Stbd buttons). The second press places the A/P back in "AUTO" mode on your present heading. You cannot place the system back in "NAV" mode from the remote.

The ability to place the A/P back into "AUTO" mode can be very useful if you are relocating to another helm position of if you are elsewhere on the boat and going back to your main helm.

Using the 3-wire connection and selecting Port or Stbd on your wireless remote should immediately place the A/P 26 in "INACTIVE" mode and pass steering control to your remote. You will have to return to the A/P 26 to regain A/P control again (AUTO, NAV, STBY).

How is the installation going so far?
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Old 04-25-2016, 08:41 PM   #92
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Tom,

The "Mode" button on the R3000X Remote Control does a little more than just but the system in "Standby" mode....

How is the installation going so far?
Hmmmm. This complicates things. I may have to go back to the drawing board on the remote.

The install is just waiting for the pump to be hooked up. The guy who's supposedly doing it gave me some good ideas where to mount it, and if he gets too busy I may end up running the hydraulic lines myself, with some help from the local shop that was recommended by a few others in my marina.
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Old 04-30-2016, 08:00 AM   #93
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Poking around, I found this 4-channel remote:
.

If I'm reading the schematic above correctly, the mode change button only shorts the two terminals (port and starboard) to ground simultaneously. In theory, I ought to be able to achieve the same result by pressing both buttons at the same time. Since I don't have everything hooked up yet, it's impossible to test this theory.

Anybody know what diodes I should use if I go the 3-button route?

If I buy the 4-channel remote, I'll have fun trying to figure out what to hook up to the 4th channel. Horn? Deck lights? They also sell a 6-channel...
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Old 04-30-2016, 03:37 PM   #94
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Yes, that could well work. For diodes, pretty much anything will work, Just be sure their rated voltage is well over your battery voltage. So for a 12V system, I'd look for 15V or higher rating, and for 24V system I'd look for 35V or higher. Radio Shack should have something in their parts drawers.

I'd love to hear how this works out, especially whether the remote is sufficiently responsive and reliable.
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Old 05-09-2016, 09:09 AM   #95
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Just had to throw my two cents in. I have an old Autohelm 2000 that holds whatever course it is on when I hit "HOLD". It used to do courses of of Loran but that is now gone. In updating radar and GPS and such I thought about it but I don't want to have an autonomous boat. I use it to avoid fatigue but I make all of the course changes and let the unit keep it on course between turns. My brother is looking for a unit like mine and can't find one without the computer either. I would say to try to find an old unit like the Autohelm and offer someone $200 and you would probably have what you want. We've traveled the East Coast up into Canada with it and I will probably never upgrade if I have that choice.
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Old 05-09-2016, 09:17 AM   #96
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Holding a heading is fine in wide open spaces because drift is no big deal.

If you need to avoid hazards, holding a course is much safer.

I can see not wanting to autoturn...not sure all APs do that anyway without acknowledgement...but leaving holding a course off the table to me seems....well I have no way to put it that someone wouldn't take offense. It really is a quantum leap feature.
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Old 05-10-2016, 01:55 PM   #97
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psneeld - Let's not be so judgmental. I enjoy actually piloting my boat and you perhaps don't but I would never think of judging someone who does things differently - I usually think about it and usually find that there is some good in what they are saying. In 50 years of boating I have never smacked a dock or another boat, never went aground more than a nudge on soft sand, and never damaged an engine and I credit a lot of that to staying involved and alert. All too often I see boaters going along with the entire crew at a table in the rear of the bridge and no one looking forward. It all works well until it doesn't! Having a simpler system "leads me not into temptation" and it works for me.
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Old 05-13-2016, 06:27 AM   #98
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"I have an old Autohelm 2000 that holds whatever course it is on when I hit "HOLD"."

Perhaps not.

Most will hold Heading ( direction thru the water,) no problem , but Course is direction made good over the bottom, and must have some Nav input.
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Old 05-13-2016, 06:55 AM   #99
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psneeld - Let's not be so judgmental. I enjoy actually piloting my boat and you perhaps don't but I would never think of judging someone who does things differently - I usually think about it and usually find that there is some good in what they are saying. In 50 years of boating I have never smacked a dock or another boat, never went aground more than a nudge on soft sand, and never damaged an engine and I credit a lot of that to staying involved and alert. All too often I see boaters going along with the entire crew at a table in the rear of the bridge and no one looking forward. It all works well until it doesn't! Having a simpler system "leads me not into temptation" and it works for me.
It has nothing to do with all that....

I think you are missing the point between the two functions.

Used exactly the same, for the same reasons..... only one will keep you and your near perfect boating record clean just in case something along the way distracts you. Not necessarily the party at the table....but something important and putting the boat in neutral is not the best option.

Works for you till it doesnt...have seen plenty of people get into trouble on auto that forgot it doesn't allow for drift. They were not any more alert than people who use "track".

Not being so judgemental as I have plenty of experience with boaters of all experience levels and for the life of me don't see how one feature is so different than the other when only used from A to B.

I can see a person not using AP at all, again unusual in my experience, but understandable. That is a significant difference in piloting....but not the difference between the 2 features.
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Old 05-13-2016, 11:02 AM   #100
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I'm not sure I understand this whole issue.

My autopilot can do both, hold course and hold heading.
I've never set it up to hold course.

I love my AP, but don't trust it that much. For every occurrence of it saving you from being distracted, I think there are at least a few occurrences of taking you over ground that is not advisable.

I could be totally wrong about that and maybe that's exactly your point, but I can't see trusting it to ever make course changes on it's own.

At least at this moment in time. But never say never!
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