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Old 11-09-2008, 03:41   #1
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Autohel ST 7000 problem

Hi,

can anyone please suggest a possible cure. We have a Autohelm ST7000 1994 that has been inactive for two years and when re started, the head control unit was dead. We had it checked by a "specialist" in Greece who said it was in fact ruined by damp. We were unable to get a replacement head unit and had to resort to E bay where a buyer promised us his unit was good. We installed it and yes, we had lights on the unit and it appeared hopeful. However when engaging auto it went berserk flashing from standby to manual and clicking noises were emanating from the motor unit below. We had it checked by an marine elecrician in the Ionian, where we currently are, and he checked all the wires, replaced feeds and generally ensured that the wiring and contacts were good. It appeared to be working when auto was engaged but we noticed that there was no degree heading on the head control unit. This was annoying so he checked the compass connections and could find no problem there, but when he disconnected the compass the unit still appeared to work normally. I must add that we were at anchor and only tested by autoing 20 degrees port and twenty starboard etc. He reconnected compass and tried again , the unit seemed to work even when we simulated movement by rotating compass. We had one small episode when the machine went into berserk mode again and it "froze" and power had to be cut to get manual control again. But then it appeared to work OK. Anyway at sea it goes into berserk and freezes, turns to port and power has to be removed from the main control panel to restore manual control. The linear drive motor seems to be fine and the steering is light and well maintained. I am presuming the problem is head unit, brain or compass. Does anyone know please of anyone in the UK who repairs these units as we are returning to UK soon and could bring these units back. Sorry for the diatribe but we do struggle without an autohelm !
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Old 11-09-2008, 06:58   #2
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I have suffered some with ST7000 and while not exactly the same problem as yours. Here a a couple of suggestions.

My new one would occasionally go walk about. Raymarine and local specialist said "connection problem." I fought this for a couple of years, then a different tech said he thought the head was not getting sufficient power. We hooked up to an additional 12 breaker and so far so good. Be sure you have sufficient power.

Go through the full commissioning calibration, both dock side and sea calibration. Some of your problems almost sound like it is not set to the right gain and/or response.

I could be the computer and not the head that is going nuts. Not a good thing.

Could be your eBay purchase was not a good deal.

Good luck. Wish I could offer more concrete suggestions.

George
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Old 13-09-2008, 16:18   #3
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I can't explain your problem but can offer a solution if it turns out this control head is faulty.... Fit a 7001 control head instead. They work as a direct replacement.

My 7000 failed this year due to corrosion and Raymarine told me to use 7001
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Old 13-09-2008, 18:24   #4
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I have a 7000 head I took off as it didn't fit after I reconfigured my pedestal. Should work like new if you are interested.
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Old 24-09-2008, 05:39   #5
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ThankYou

Thanks for the offer, unfortunately we are in the Ionian Greece. I do have a friend going to the BVI's in October, and another friend has a yacht in Antigua are you anywhere near there by any chance?. How much do you seek for your old head unit please?

Regards

John B
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Old 24-09-2008, 06:44   #6
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Autohelm problem

I think you may have a problem with the brain. I had a similar problem with my 6001 system and replaced the head twice. Only to find out there was a short in the computer that destroyed the head unit. If you have one of the old computers, I think they do not have heat sinks and internal protection from blowing the head control units.

The Raymarine Techs were very helpful on the phone when I called them from Panama in helping me isolate the issues.
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Old 28-11-2008, 15:13   #7
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i have a ST7000. instead of working it flashes alternately "No Link" and "ST700" while beeping every 30 second. do you an idea for solving this problem? it has done this a few before but took care of itself in maybe 15 minutes. i am leaving for bermuda tuesday and would like to have it working
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Old 29-11-2008, 06:37   #8
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Autopilot Problem

Sounds like a loose wire if it is working intermittently. Are the linked instruments working? If so, check the connections to the computer--Carefully--turn all power off before you do this-- some of the older units are not fused well and if you short them at the computer, you can blow all your instruments, not just the head unit and the computer. Don't ask how I know this.
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