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Old 05-07-2016, 08:44   #1
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Location: Vilano Beach
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Hoping for a reset option!

Ok was sailing from St Augustine to Ponce inlet on the east coast of Florida. Of course since this inlet is one of the worse marked (on my chart plotter) inlets around it was time for both my autopilot and depth finder the die. I resolved it was due to low battery issues. I solved at the dock after a safe landing. But now i can't get the two heads to work.

Systems are Autohelm ST4000 autopilot and Autohelm tri-data. Boat is a S/V Gulfstar cc 1982.

Back to the details. While sailing the autopilot just stopped working, the tri-data head which was lonely working to show depth went to all zeros.

On my battery bank I found one of the 6 volt batteries has a broken terminal so making erratic contact. I replaced the battery. and all systems show 12+ volts every where i put my multi-meter.

I turn both heads on and off with separate breakers in my main 12 volt panel. now when i turn them on i get a tone on each one. So I expect each has power, but no data on either head. the tones don't stop till i turn off power.

I know these are very old systems. but they had been working great in the 16 months i have hand the boat. I had a low power problem months ago and the autopilot stopped working but came back when batteries were charged. this time not so lucky.

Hoping there is some kind of reset options out there. when searching the net for old manuals all i find is how to reset if a New PCB is installed. They say press standby for 13 seconds then start a reprogram process.

Hoping for some advice short of buying all new. Both have worked great till this issue.
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Old 07-07-2016, 13:34   #2
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Location: Potomac Shores, VA USA
Boat: Formosa 51 Aft Cockpit Ketch - "Beausoleil"
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Re: Hoping for a reset option!

12+ volts is a little ambiguous. With flooded lead acid batteries, 12.65V at 80 degrees F is fully charged, while 12.06V is 80% discharged - and remember that you shouldn't take a battery down to less than 50% charged or you'll severely limit its lifespan.

As far as your Autohelm instrument heads - check the the red +12V power lead and make sure you have sufficient voltage there. Corrosion in the small gauge wires will cause problems.
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