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New Auto Pilot

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  • New Auto Pilot



    I originally had posted a question about APs on the other Shamrock board because there are a lot of west coasters on it who I knew used APs a lot for offshore. Here is the link for background.

    https://www.shamrockboatownersclub.c...-wanted.42471/

    I am starting this thread with a couple of my update posts from the thread. Chris will need to help out with some content though since he was brains behind the install.


    I did what seemed like endless hours of researching and debating options. My husband (Radioman) agreed to be installer and IT support but left choice up to me. Initially I was just shopping for an Auto pilot, but soon decided that rather than trying to tie my preferred choice into the older generation Garmin display that came with the boat I was better off to go with a new electronics package for display, radar and AP. I finally decided on Furuno. I loved their new TZ3 touch multi function display (I went with the 12" unit), the AP itself and a new generation radar, they had a good reputation for support and a local (sort of) dealer was available also. The local dealer was great to work with. He answered countless questions, got me most of the components at a great price, and had me get some others through a national supplier (Hodges Marine) because he told me straight up he couldn't beat their online package deal. He also provided us with great tech support via numerous phone calls during the install process.

    The AP I chose has a rudder reference unit (RRU). We tried about a dozen different ways to keep the kicker (which is a tiller steer we had tied into the hydraulic steering system) and main rudder coordinated but after doing trial and error for a while I asked my husband if there was a way to tie a 2nd rudder reference unit into the system. He said he could and got another RRU from Ebay for +/-$100. The biggest issue was to make sure both of the RRUs saw the same measurements of degree swing at the end of hard over turns. To do so meant adjusting the distance between the RRUs and the rudders (rudder arm for main steering and hydraulic ram we installed on the kicker) It took some head scratching and testing but we did get them to read within a degree or two of each other, which translated into the AP control unit behaving the same with info from either unit.
    Radioman wired main rudder RRU and kicker RRU both into an AB type switch. When running the main engine the hydraulics are set to the main rudder with the RRU selector box on "A" position. When we get to fishing grounds we fire up the kicker, throw the hydraulic valve to kicker steering setting and the electric RRU box switch to "B" and I am good to go for fishing. Basically, the AP brain doesn't care what rudder it is working, it just needs RRU info from somewhere, and hubby's AB switch set up keeps the AP brain happy. Which makes me happy.
    Previously we had an electrosteer set up (with a remote control) on the kicker which worked great but it meant I had to nearly constantly make course corrections in any wind or chop. It was a huge improvement over tiller steer (which I did for years on another boat), and more convenient than being tied to the steering wheel but the AP is a whole world level above since starting to use it this year.
    I have been using it for enough trips now to be confident it is going to be good for the long term. I can tell you we have now used it trolling both with and into 4ft seas and it has held a solid course. Being able to completely disengage it from the hydraulic system and tiller steer is handy for maneuvering in tight marinas.
    Karen
    Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania
    1986 Shamrock H/T with RWC 330 hp PCM, dual hydraulic helm
    1992 Mako 211CC w/Mercury Optimax 175
    3 other smaller OB boats and a trusty old canoe...

  • #2
    A few pics of the electronics... will need to get pics of the mechanical install which is really the nuts and bolts of it.

    The system has a lot of components, the Multi Function Display (Furuno TZ Touch3), the AP (7011C controller), 7002 processor, PG700 sensor, Rudder Reference units (FAP6112), hydraulic pump, HRP17-2, I went with the oversized pump in case it was going to operate both steering rams at once,which it didn't end up doing so I could have used the smaller option available. The radar is the DRS4DNXT.
    We also got the NEMA 2K backbone and numerous cables from Amazon for the install.
    Click image for larger version

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    Another screenshot from app on my phone...
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    Controller installed on rear console
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    This set up has a ton of features I am just getting started on discovering. It has the ability (with a simple app) to be mirrored onto a phone or tablet with the tablet option actually becoming a true mirror of the MFD, allowing me to totally control the MFD and therefore the AP or radar from my tablet anywhere on the boat.
    Last edited by Fisherlady2; 09-01-2021, 10:30 AM.
    Karen
    Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania
    1986 Shamrock H/T with RWC 330 hp PCM, dual hydraulic helm
    1992 Mako 211CC w/Mercury Optimax 175
    3 other smaller OB boats and a trusty old canoe...

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    • #3
      Wow! That's a nice setup! Thanks for sharing the install details and components - I'll look into it.
      1987 26' Hardtop
      1996 20' Walkaround Cuddy

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      • #4
        That is really sweet...i am jealous. More so of that beautiful large display!

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        • #5
          The display size was originally for visibility from the stern when there are often extra riders between me and the screen. Now that I am messing with the app on my old tablet it isn't as much of an issue. The touch screen and the program Furuno uses for doing routes makes setting up the AP routes a breeze and zooming in and out on the map is simple also. If you use a smart phone then switching to the TZ MFD is pretty simple but if you prefer old school this model still has the hard buttons down the right side.
          when at the rear of the boat the rear control is handy for angling left or right to avoid traffic without having to go back to the MFD up front or grabbing the tablet even. Routes can be as simple or as complicated as we need.
          Couple of the handiest functions are the "go to" command, simply touch any previous way point or actually just anywhere you want to go, a pop up box shows with options, choose the "go to" option and it asks if you want to engage AP, tell it yes and you are done. 2nd is track back. It allows you to follow your exact trail in reverse. It doesn't matter if it is a mile or 10 miles. If you had a good fishing troll it allows you to turn around and go right back through them.
          Karen
          Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania
          1986 Shamrock H/T with RWC 330 hp PCM, dual hydraulic helm
          1992 Mako 211CC w/Mercury Optimax 175
          3 other smaller OB boats and a trusty old canoe...

          Comment


          • tcf25
            tcf25 commented
            Editing a comment
            Awesome features!
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