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Old 21-07-2016, 14:57   #1
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Inexpensive AIS transponder

We have a Raymarine chartplotter and we want to add an AIS transponder to our boat. We'd like the AIS to talk to the Raymarine as well, but a good display in the cabin would be adequate and is the priority. Its for Caribbean cruising. Our budget is minimal.

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Old 21-07-2016, 15:15   #2
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

This would be a good place to start AMEC CAMINO-108 Class B AIS transponder

I have the earlier model, Milltech are good people to deal with.

If you want one with an integrated display I would suggest the Vesper Vesper Marine AIS WatchMate 850 Transponder and Display but that is more $$$.

Cheapest fix is if you have a pre-existing PC and display in the cabin.
I have the previous model Amec feeding both the PC/display downstairs and a 'dumb' Vesper display - which they no longer seem to sell - nearer the helm.
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Old 21-07-2016, 15:34   #3
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

The GME one works very well, and integrates nicely with nmea2000 or a computer.

http://www.chsmith.com.au/Products/G...ansceiver.html

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Old 21-07-2016, 16:19   #4
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

[QUOTE=El Pinguino;2171497]This would be a good place to start AMEC CAMINO-108 Class B AIS transponder
/QUOTE]

The AMEC sounds perfect. Will it talk to the Raymarine chart plotter?
Do I need to split the VHF radio antenna or should I just add another antenna?

Thank you for taking the time to answer.

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Old 21-07-2016, 16:37   #5
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

Yes. AMEC seems to be one of the less expensive units. The GME looks even less expensive and waterproof. +

I do not know if it talks to Ray well. It is a Ray problem, not AMEC's as Ray is so dense in showing how to interface to their products.

AMEC unit is not waterproof though, so make sure you install it where there are no drips.

Vesper's bluebox is IPX7 and wifi. More expensive than the cheaper options but not wildly so. Worth the buck for some users for sure.

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Old 21-07-2016, 17:20   #6
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

And then there's this way....
https://help.marinetraffic.com/hc/en...k-AIS-Receiver
Simple as falling of a log* The DIY instructions are there to download and I am sure with a little patience and a hammer the project will be up and running in moments.
*a really big log with handrails.
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Old 22-07-2016, 01:38   #7
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

I've got a Matsutec HP-33A

Lots of discussion on YBW forums.
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Old 22-07-2016, 04:23   #8
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

Not having heard of the Matsutec before I just signed up with AliBaba and asked for a quote from Susan.. ( it took a bit of google searching to find the YBW threads )...

Prompt response from Susan

'HP-33A 4.3" Color LCD marine GPS/AIS transponder with GPS antenna :
for sample one, best price is US$350 with delivery cost to Australia .'

Interesting.
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Old 22-07-2016, 04:55   #9
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

AMEC 108 as others have said works great for us. It is connected to our NMEA2000 network as well as the ships computer(via USB). No issues and easy to install.

AMEC does support their legacy products and do update the firmware as need.

Milltech.com is the place to go, good prices and exceptional service. Reasonable reprogramming services if you need to change an MMSI number. The most shocking thing is that someone actually answers the phone when you call and they know what they are talking about!
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Old 22-07-2016, 05:51   #10
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post

I do not know if it talks to Ray well. It is a Ray problem, not AMEC's as Ray is so dense in showing how to interface to their products.
All Raymarine units accept AIS data using the 38k NMEA serial port. 99.9% of all AIS units have this interface. Also, Raymarine accepts AIS data from NMEA-2000 interface. Raymarine use their own connector for this but the wires are universal so it is possible to adapt the wires from any NMEA-2000 source to the Raymarine connector.
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Old 22-07-2016, 07:55   #11
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

If you want an inexpensive AIS receiver I recommend this one:

https://www.tindie.com/products/astu...-ais-receiver/

Not a transponder, but for less than $100 what do you expect?
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Old 22-07-2016, 09:05   #12
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

THIS IS JUST A RECEIVER, NOT A TRANSPONDER.
A Transponder shall also allow OTHERS to see you...as it broadcasts...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevie B View Post
And then there's this way....
https://help.marinetraffic.com/hc/en...k-AIS-Receiver
Simple as falling of a log* The DIY instructions are there to download and I am sure with a little patience and a hammer the project will be up and running in moments.
*a really big log with handrails.
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Old 22-07-2016, 10:14   #13
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

If you can live with just a AIS receiver, there are some notes/instructions in one of the OpenCPN threads that talk about using a very cheap ($10-15) USB device. As I recall, it is originally for TV's but guess it can handle the AIS frequencies and interface with the free OpenCPN chart plotter (and other free programs. Gives you full AIS displays on your computer, and other NMEA devices.

The web based solutions (MaTraffic.com. etc) are not usable at sea given that they need constant internet access. They also don't give you the best rt of AIS - calculations of CPA,time to CPA, etc. and alarm modes.

If you happen to be looking for a new VHF at the same time, there are several that have a built in AIS receiver.
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Old 22-07-2016, 15:08   #14
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

Yes, S/Horizon make quite a few vhf/ais combos but they all seem to be rx only which is not what the OP wants.
Funny how the expression 'AIS transponder' has crept into common usage when they are simply transceivers.....
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Old 22-07-2016, 16:08   #15
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Re: Inexpensive AIS transponder

Raymarine Seatalk and NEMA are a pain in the ass when trying to add other brands to the system.

I used a Nobletec AIS receiver a few years ago before going to the Class B unit. The NEMA was all screwed up between the ICOM radios and the Raymarine Chart Plotter. Couldn't get the DSC to interface with the Chartplotter.

ICOM and Raymarine pointed fingers at each other. Problem was never salved.

I finally surrendered and purchased a Raymarine AIS Transponder.

Works great and you are able to interface the radios DSC onto the Plotter.

My recommendation is stay with Raymarine and buy the Raymarine AIS650.

I just saw it on the internet for $650, which includes the GPS antenna and wiring
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