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Old 06-25-2014, 04:28 PM   #1
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City: Maumelle, AR
Country: United States
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 106
New auto pilot for 1981 Mainship

We have a 1981 Mainship II with a Perkins 200 HP engine. The old auto pilot does not work. Has not worked since we have owned the boat. I want to replace it with a modern auto pilot. Not sure where to start. I do want one with a wireless remote. Any brand or model suggestions?

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Old 06-25-2014, 04:33 PM   #2
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City: Seattle, WA
Country: Good Ol' US of A!
Vessel Name: Pau Hana
Vessel Model: 1989 PT52 Overseas Yachtfisher
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 1,658
Most (if not all) of the new AP units have the option of a wireless remote.

Are any components of your existing unit working?

I just installed a Raymarine Evolution EV-400 on our boat. Easy install, and works fantastically. I used the existing pump and just hooked up the electronics.

Peter- Marine Insurance Guru & tuna fishing addict!

1989 52' PT Overseas yachtfisher
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Old 06-25-2014, 04:34 PM   #3
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Vessel Model: Nordhavn 47 Hull# 12
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Simrad make the best. But you can get a Sitex with virtual feedback (no rudder feedback sensor in the lazzerette.) for about $1300 if memory serves. But if you have the money simrad is the absolute best.
Thanks, Oliver
M/V Oliver
Nordhavn 47 Hull #12
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Old 06-25-2014, 04:52 PM   #4
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We installed a Simrad AP28 last year and it has been working flawlessly. Make sure that whatever you get has a rudder indicator, unless you already have one.

And personal preference of course, but I also like to have a rotary knob for course adjustments. (They're typically one click per degree so you can make small corrections without looking at the instrument.)
Berthed in
Campbell River BC
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Old 07-18-2014, 05:47 AM   #5
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City: Fort Myers - FL
Country: Brazil
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New auto pilot for 1981 Mainship

I changed my old one for a new Garmin connected to my Garmin GPS by NMEO2000 and its fantastic, easy and accuracy

Sergio "Alemao" Sztancsa
Sent from my iPhone, using Trawler Forum
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Old 07-18-2014, 07:38 AM   #6
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City: New Bern, N.C.
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Lady J
Vessel Model: 1978 Mainship 34 #150
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 265
I installed a ComNav 1420 this year and love it. A day's job to install with my hydraulic steering, tedious but not too technical. Holds a course better than I can. Simple unit, can be hooked up to other electronics, but I don't. After going through the archives here for info, what sold me is members from both coasts saying this is the unit that local fishermen use. There can't be any higher recommendation than that for me. About $1,400 from Defender.

"Keep putting off till tomorrow, and you'll end up with a lot of empty yesterdays" Prof. Harold Hill
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Old 07-18-2014, 10:03 AM   #7
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City: Sarasota/Ft. Lauderdale
Country: USA
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Posts: 5,437
Any of the well known autopilots will work. I used most all of them over the years and can't say any one is head and shoulders over the others. What ever you get just be sure to install and calibrate it correctly.
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Old 07-18-2014, 10:29 AM   #8
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City: Wilmington, NC
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Vessel Model: Custom Built 38
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 4,207
Don't go cheap!! Save money on ANYTHING but the ap. A crappy ap will annoy you on every trip. Skeptical of ones that don't have a real rudder feedback sensor.

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