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Old 22-05-2012, 07:12   #106
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Re: Autopilot Computer Simrad vs. Raymarine

I am looking at the HLD 2000 split version. Before now, I used a Sailomat windvane with great results in all conditions. I only mention this to make the point that my boat balances well and steers easily. (I am changing to an under deck AP in order to clear off my great swim platform, instead of dedicating it to brackets, blocks, and lines.) I am also in contact with Wil Hamm in Washington state about his APs. In either case, Simrad or WilHamm, the hydraulic ram will be mounted to a dedicated tiller just below my quadrant.
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Old 22-05-2012, 07:38   #107
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Re: Autopilot Computer Simrad vs. Raymarine

When the sea state gets like a washing machine you won't be able to balance the helm and that is when the below deck hydraulic pilot comes into it's own. With ours I have been on the boat when it did a better job than I could have. Not so much as being smarter but the strength needed to wrestle the wheel back when a barn door rudder side loads as the stern falls off steep chop can wear you out in a matter of a few hours.

It should be a simple computation to size the ram properly. The installation of the ram would be quite important. It's going to get a real beating on those "special" days. I'm not sure a dedicated tiller is the best way to go since it requires a longer extension. The power of the ram is quite amazing. This is not like a windvane - it's hydraulic! Think earth moving equipment. Tiller pilots are for small boats and usaually just electric. You should be quite impressed with the performance.
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Old 22-05-2012, 08:24   #108
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Re: Autopilot Computer Simrad vs. Raymarine

i dont know if my simrad hdl2000is which kind, but it does me well in big seas and high winds--i would get this model in a heartbeat, if i didnt have it and had the dough to buy and install--it is awesome..uses very little electricity--hydraulic with electric assist and mounted on quadrant..awesome.
there is no way i can move the wheel when this unit is engaged--i love it. does well even in 60+kt breezes with 15 ft following to quartering seas--like off cabo san lucas....
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Old 22-05-2012, 18:41   #109
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Re: Autopilot Computer Simrad vs. Raymarine

Pblais: I'm sorry for making some confusion over the term "tiller." I can see a big misunderstanding here, due to my lack of clarity. The tiller in this case for an electric/hydraulic ram would be about 11 inches long, attached to my rudder stock below the swim deck, in fact, attached just below my 20 inch Edson quadrant. (Aft facing, under the swim platform/sugar scoop transom, but still in a nice dry inside space.)

A photo would explain it better maybe.
http://a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot...47051287_n.jpg

My steer-by-wire system goes to a center-cockpit steering wheel of large diameter. I ran this 48' steel boat with a Sailomat windvane for about 30K miles from SC to Guam and back over a number of years. The Sailomat vane also ran it's lines to a short aft-facing tiller, one that was a few inches above the swim platform. The new tiller for the AP will be a few inches below the swim platform, but still "in the hull" nice and dry. (My swim platform is about 8' wide by 4' fore and aft. Plenty of empty, dry interior is below it.)

Anyway, the tiller for the Simrad or WilHamm AP ram will be an aft-facing 11 or 12 inch tiller just below the 20" quadrant on my rudder shaft. I have plenty of room for a hydraulic ram extending 90 degrees from the end of the short, aft-facing tiller, over to the side of the area below the swim platform. I just want information about the best ram to do the job, that will fit in the space.
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Old 22-05-2012, 18:48   #110
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Re: Autopilot Computer Simrad vs. Raymarine

I had a Robertson HLD 2000 drive on my Amphitrite. Was only rated to 20,000 lbs but previous owner broke several connection pins (10mm stainless) and got a few made from grade 8 steel bolts.

I replaced old robertson control head with Raymarine S2 corepack in 2007. Rated to 24,000 I think, but worked perfectly. Honestly handled the boat perfect in all conditions. Never used in over 35 knots, but sure it would have been fine. Had to reinforce the Edson bronze arm as well.
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Old 22-05-2012, 18:59   #111
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Re: Autopilot Computer Simrad vs. Raymarine

Zeehag: I am guessing that if my 48 foot steel boat can be steered by a wind vane going to a short aft-facing tiller just above my swim deck, it can be steered even better by a short aft-facing tiller just below my swim deck (but still dry inside the boat) that is being pushed by a powerful hydraulic ram. I know the Simrad HLD 2000 "split version" (pump is not mounted directly on the ram, but by 1M of hydraulic hose) will fit in the space. I am waiting for information back from Will Ham in Washington state about the size of his hydraulic rams, to compare them both.
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Old 22-05-2012, 19:17   #112
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Re: Autopilot Computer Simrad vs. Raymarine

Quote:
I just want information about the best ram to do the job, that will fit in the space.
I don't see any problem with one or the other ram. You need to work out which one exactly. Installation would be the biggest concern I would have. These really need to be nailed down. Working with folks that do larger commercial boats this is the critical part of the installation. It should work in 60 knots of wind. It should steer when you couldn't hope to manualy. It's not a substitute for a windvane.
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Old 23-05-2012, 05:17   #113
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Re: Autopilot Computer Simrad vs. Raymarine

Pblais: I understand about the very strong mount and installation, and I have very strong steel mounting positions in good locations. The main thing is being sure that it will fit, dimensionally, into the space. I know the Simrad HLD2000 split version will fit. Not sure about the WH AP yet.

I don't know what you meant by "It's not a substitute for a wind vane." For me, it is. My Sailomat worked very well for me, but it dominated my great swim platform with a cat's cradle of criss-crossing control lines, plus the windvane itself on a bracket right in the middle of the swim platform.

As a result, one of the main design features of my transom was made impossible, that is, the ability to carry a large RIB up on my aft deck, with 8' on deck and 4' extending out over my swim platform, ready to roll into the ocean or pull back aboard. Instead, my swim platform became a home for a wind vane only.
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