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Old 11-10-2011, 05:07   #1
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Autopilot Standby and Manual Override ?

Dear all,

I have a Raymarine ST7000+ autopilot with a type 300 course computer, and a hydraulic ram to control the rudder. Normally to disengage the autopilot, I hit STANDBY, then take the helm.

In an emergency could I take the helm and 'over-ride' the autopilot without hitting STANDBY first? Would this do any damage i.e. is the system designed to take these sort of 'events'? Or would the hydraulic & control system 'fight' the manual steering input?

Thanks for the help!

Michael
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Old 11-10-2011, 05:27   #2
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Re: autopilot standby & manual over-ride?

Not a good idea and pretty unlikely that you could override the hydraulic system. You may end up damaging the steering mechanism, it depends on how powerful the ram and pump are.
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Old 11-10-2011, 06:45   #3
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Re: autopilot standby & manual over-ride?

I do not think one can manually force/damage a loaded hydraulic arm. In fact I would expect the pilot can take action and break your bones, should you have your foot or hand in the wrong place.

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Old 11-10-2011, 07:06   #4
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Re: autopilot standby & manual over-ride?

Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
I do not think one can manually force/damage a loaded hydraulic arm. In fact I would expect the pilot can take action and break your bones, should you have your foot or hand in the wrong place.

b.
+1

You won't break the hydraulic ram, and probably not its attachment to your quadrant. But you could very well break a steering cable or cable anchor!

In short, don't do it!
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Old 11-10-2011, 07:11   #5
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Re: autopilot standby & manual over-ride?

Some autopilots have a "Dodge" button that disconnects the autopilot but it remembers what you were last steering. After dodging around an obstacle you tap the "Dodge" button again to re-engage the autopilot which continues on as if you never disengaged it.
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Old 11-10-2011, 07:37   #6
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Re: autopilot standby & manual over-ride?

I have a Robertson a/p. Switch was on auto by accident. Turned the wheel, felt some resistance, gave it a tug, and broke the tiller quite easily. As you can see from the picture, it was quite a substantial piece of brass. Luckily, no damage to hydraulics or anything else.
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Old 20-03-2018, 05:05   #7
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Re: Autopilot Standby and Manual Override ?

I have an Autohelm ST5002 in my 31' ACM Elite motor cruiser, fitted in 2000. Its manual override saved my bacon several years ago.

we were cruising at 20 knots in good weather on the Costa Brava, Catalunya. I suddenly noticed a fishing buoy straight ahead so I hit the 10 Stbd button. I had noticed a classic style sailing boat relatively far ahead to starboard, but a group of fast sports boats to port seemed more of a risk. Then I saw another half-submerged float dead ahead and closer so I hit Stbd again but realised I was now going straight for the sailboat. I panicked. I know I should have stayed calm and cut the throttle, but my immediate reaction was to grab the wheel and spin it to port. The autopilot sensed the wheel's motion and "obeyed", pulling us sharply to port. We were now heading parallel to the sailing boat and I relaxed. Immediately the autopilot started to return to its initial heading, so I again spun the wheel to port and kept at it until I finally had the good sense to hit the StandBy button and reduce speed.

I got the fright of my life, realising I could have rammed that sailing boat, seemingly carrying members of the public out with a skipper, thrown my own family members off the foredeck into the sea, etc.etc.

I now wish to replace the autopilot with a new one capable of handling a following sea in the force 6/7 winds we get fairly often around here, but very few seem to have this really useful feature!

Chris
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Old 24-03-2018, 11:57   #8
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Re: Autopilot Standby and Manual Override ?

Only the Garmin has this feature. And only for hydraulic steering. The shadow drive.


If you have a weak / small pilot. You will probably outsteer it. And it will turn back right after. If you have a strong pilot. As you turn the wheel it will just fight you. And you won't turn.
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Old 24-03-2018, 15:07   #9
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Re: Autopilot Standby and Manual Override ?

Ah, so that's why it worked! It wasn't a feature of the st 5000+ but just a consequence of my particular configuration. Thanks for the explanation.

I had come to the conclusion that the Garmin was the one I wanted, and I can keep the drive unit and rudder sensor if I add the adapter cables for non-Garmin units. Thanks for your interest.
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Old 25-03-2018, 23:03   #10
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Re: Autopilot Standby and Manual Override ?

it will only work if you have the garmin shadow drive, and have hydraulic steering.

the refit kits / non garmin pumps probably won't have it.
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Old 26-03-2018, 02:55   #11
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Re: Autopilot Standby and Manual Override ?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, cerdal.
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Old 26-03-2018, 05:22   #12
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Re: Autopilot Standby and Manual Override ?

My ST5000+ has indeed got a hydraulic drive, a type 1 reversing pump.
It also has a rudder position sender.
I am now thinking of getting:
- Garmin GHP Reactor Mechanical/Refit with Shadow Drive 010-00705-45
- Garmin ECU/non-Garmin pump cable 010-11533-00
- Garmin GHP 12 non-Garmin rudder feedback cable 010-11532-00

What do you think of the chances it will work as intended?
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Old 26-03-2018, 09:35   #13
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Re: Autopilot Standby and Manual Override ?

ahem...
I think I may have been thinking of the flaps when I said reversing pump - the steering is definitely hydraulic, but it is probably a ram rather than a pump. I'll confirm after my next visit to the boat.
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Old 27-03-2018, 20:50   #14
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Re: Autopilot Standby and Manual Override ?

I've only ever seen a couple of hydraulic helm steered sailboats. they are normally cable. the helm itself needs to be hydraulic. just just the existing pilot system.

I have only installed garmins on power boats. the shawdow drive works fine. you can see on the autopilot screen that the shawdow drive is engaged when you turn the steering wheel. and the sensitivity can be adjusted. so how much the wheel moves before it kicks in.
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