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Old 01-11-2020, 09:10 PM   #1
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Smart Boat

I'm wondering has anyone else done any work making their boat a smart boat? Lighting, heating and ac, cameras, warnings, security, engine monitoring, and all the fun and exciting tech available for homes and such? Or am I the only lunatic trying it?
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Old 01-11-2020, 09:17 PM   #2
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I'm wondering has anyone else done any work making their boat a smart boat? Lighting, heating and ac, cameras, warnings, security, engine monitoring, and all the fun and exciting tech available for homes and such? Or am I the only lunatic trying it?
and comes when you whistle for it too????
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Old 01-11-2020, 09:21 PM   #3
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I already have a smart boat.

I bunk down at night with dirty dishes all over the galley, dirty laundry in the basket, and cast off shoes in the salon.

When I get up the dishes are all done, laundry in the dryer, and shoes all put away.

Smartest boat I have ever owned!

It will be worth a fortune when I am ready to sell it!
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Old 01-11-2020, 09:39 PM   #4
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So other than some poor attempts at sarcasm, I will wait for some actual respnses.
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Old 01-11-2020, 09:48 PM   #5
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So other than some poor attempts at sarcasm, I will wait for some actual respnses.
Responses.
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Old 01-11-2020, 10:01 PM   #6
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Well we all like to have a bit of fun here. Donít get too upset...
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Old 01-11-2020, 10:07 PM   #7
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Greetings,
Mr. M. One lightning strike either direct or nearby and it'll get dumb real fast. I really don't see the point. KISS. (Keep it Simple Sailor).
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Old 01-11-2020, 10:31 PM   #8
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Use fiber for all comm links. Boats live in a more challenging EMC environment than most homes.
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Old 01-11-2020, 10:55 PM   #9
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I think TF member Tdot was doing something like this with Raspberry pi...
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Old 01-11-2020, 10:57 PM   #10
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Yes, I have a smart boat I suppose.

I have a samsung smartthings hub and a variety of devices.

Here is a live screen shot.

As you can see, I am monitoring electrical power, bilge water, smoke/CO, intrusion, and temperature.

Since I keep my boat in Alaska I have made temperature monitoring and heating system control a priority. I can not only control my diesel fueled furnaces, I can also control my backup built in electric heat, as well as itís energy usage to not exceed my available shore power capability.

When anything happens on the boat I get a text message indicating the condition, and some conditions will activate the onboard sirens to attract immediate attention.

This is all using off the shelf components, used for ther manufacturers intended functions. The system requires no code level programming skills, and is configured through the manufacturers GUI screens.

I also have a full set of pan tilt zoom onboard cameras to monitor the engine room, and other areas. Attached is a live shot of my salon and my engine room.

For all this to work one needs a onboard Local Area Network. This is provided by a Cradlepoint router that accesses the internet through carrier and hardware redundant cellular LTE connections that are backed up by a 2mbps satellite link. for when the cellular networks are out of range or unavailable. The comm and alarm systems run on a dedicated UPS that is powered by the whole boat inverter system, and fully alarmed. This prevents boat electrical issues from immediately rendering the com and alarm system inoperative. The cradlepoint router is also remotly accessble through itís manufacturers cloud based management system.
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Old 01-11-2020, 11:12 PM   #11
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NMEA 2K bus is pretty smart, engine(s) monitoring, Alarms, AP, radar, AIS, GPS Charts and depth, links to WIFI, VHF DSC interfacing, remote spot lights, wind instruments, and accessories for almost anything else you can imagine ... etc etc. Smarts provide by Garmin 942XS MFD & RPI4.

I would guess some of high end boats are pretty smart ... as boats go.

But as someone else suggested, a boat is not a house. When the water's ankle deep in the salon, the diesel spiting steam, the emergency lights are flickering - the only smarts I want have to do with the bilge pumps!!


Starlite will soon "phone home" and report nearly all the parameters available on the bus - mostly for security for now.



Check out the guys on the https://opencpn.org/ web page.
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Old 01-11-2020, 11:14 PM   #12
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Guys, I think he was talking Amazon and Google AC smart stuff.
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Old 01-12-2020, 12:04 AM   #13
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Oh, that kind of smarts .... Never Mind!


Boaters - lunatics - Fruitcakes - aint we all!
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Old 01-12-2020, 02:20 AM   #14
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I still like post #3.There again I am comfortable with a certain Pythonesque view of the world, smart or otherwise.

However, my issue with trying to make my IG 'smart' is that over the last 30 odd years, electrical bibs & bobs have been added with the associated wiring being tacked on to the original looms resulting in some strange results.

I am now in the process of having all redundant wiring removed, so that all current equipment can operate without ancillary interference. I suppose I am going down the simplify track rather than add yet another layer of complexity. I will keep the bilge pumps though.

I do like KSanders photo's of his engine room. If mine looked that neat I would think about putting a camera in as well.
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Old 01-12-2020, 05:28 AM   #15
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Folks are trying for greater automation of their boat and I am trying to wrestle the digital read outs from my Vessel View to analog gages/meters. I guess that makes me very old fashion.
IMO, the greater the automation, the more mysterious points of sudden and unexpected failure may appear.
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Old 01-12-2020, 07:49 AM   #16
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I've done quite a bit of monitoring and alarming, but little to no automated action in response to anything. The monitoring is pretty reliable, but still starts to come unglued after it's been running for a month or so without restart. Same with internet connectivity, which monitoring, and certainly Alexa-schmexa automation, requires. So the bottom line is that I haven't encountered anything yet that's reliable enough to be comfortable automating. And I'm not thinking of a lot of things that I'd want to automate anyway.


Off hand, I can think of two things that I DO plan to automate in our boat.



One is auto generator start. If the boat is unattended at anchor or without shore power, or loses shore power, when the batteries get too low I want the generator to start and go through a recharge cycle. I have been doing this in an off-grid house fro 20 years now and am comfortable that it can be done with very high reliability.


The second thing is battery protection for LFP batteries. If things go wrong, like the generator doesn't start, I want my battery bank to disconnect before it gets damaged. But lots of alarms will have gone out before that happens, so I'll know that some intervention is required.


I think that's it.


To the OP, what kinds of "smartness" were you thinking of? You mention lights. So far I have yet to encounter a "smart" lighting system that doesn't just annoy me and make life more difficult. But I guess "difficult" is in the eye of the beholder.
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Old 01-12-2020, 09:11 AM   #17
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You can buy outlets and wall switches that are on your Wi-Fi network and can be managed via Alexa, an app, or programmed for timing. So, for example, a boat can look like someone is on board when there isn't or you can turn things off and on without getting off your lazy arse!
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Old 01-12-2020, 09:34 AM   #18
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You can buy outlets and wall switches that are on your Wi-Fi network and can be managed via Alexa, an app, or programmed for timing. So, for example, a boat can look like someone is on board when there isn't or you can turn things off and on without getting off your lazy arse!
Or you can like I did and replace built in electric heater thermostats with communication enabled switches.

You could use the temperature sensors built into your motion sensors to create a virtual thermostat.

Then you could set up rules in your automation hub to sense energy useage and to prioritize devices to avoid shore power cable overloading and all that entails.

You could also turn up/down/on/ your heating system or Air Conditioner when you head to your boat so that it is nice and warm, or nice and cool when you arrive

You could set up a device that senses when your bilge pump comes on and sends you a notification if it comes on over a pre-programmed number of times in a specific time period. That way you would know you have a problem before your bilge pump wears out.

lots of really cool automation things you can do
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Old 01-12-2020, 12:36 PM   #19
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I was just wondering if anyone else has done it. I am in the prosess of transfering all mine from my previous boat to this new MT. I have my lighting and tstats set up so when I leave the boat the lights are off and ac changes to the away settings, but if someone is home it senses and there no need for them to take the stuff off the built in traditional programming a tstat has. Then with geofencing when I head back to the boat the tstat cranks up and as I pull into the marina the lights come on. It also texts me if say the temp inside gets dangerously high if the ac fails and those with pets I am sure do not want them in a cabin that's over 100 degrees for hours. I also am setting up a rasperry pi and arudino to monitor and control any high water alarms and once more will text me if my high water alarm goes off and I am not onboard, once more a valuable thing to know. I also monitor incoming voltage, amps being used, battery condition, genset and mains oil pressure, temp, vacuum on the racors, fresh water tank level. All media and tv runs through a server and can be listened to or watched from anywhere on the boat either by the monitors throughout or tablet or phone off the network. there is also the ability to monitor all cameras on the boat and if the boat is entered informs you. I will also connect nmea200 to it so I also will have access to everything anywhere someone wants to view it. In reality there is probably more of a reason for much of that on a boat then in a house. Internet is no issue, I use tmobile one plus international which gives me true unlimited 4g hotspot that is connected from a nanostation in access point wired to my router and also out to a bullet to transmit off the boat.
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Old 01-12-2020, 12:53 PM   #20
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My boat is too old to learn new tricks. One of the things I like most about the old girl is the lack of sophisticated electronics below decks.

If I hear a rumble in the engine room and a water splash out the back I know the engine is running. If it all of a sudden gets really quiet on board I know the engine is not running.
Pretty simple..

I recently rebuilt my F.L. and of course I had the option of upgrading the engine to a tier 3 or 4 or 5 but adding electronics would never make the boat more efficient (already only burns only a little over a gl. an hour) or more powerful (I only use about 90 of the available 120 hp) or longer lasting (expected life of the new F.L. is longer than my expected life).

No Thanks, KISS..

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