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Old 14-09-2009, 19:22   #31
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I bought Franson GPSGate, a software multiplexer. Worth the money (40$), muxes several inputs to as many virtual or real COMports as you like, including your browser, Google Earth, Visual Passage Planer etc.
It's a good software product I don't use but know of it. If you need many things coming into a PC this handles the ugly side. It's a really good Kalman filter and should out perform most hardware solutions. I started with RS232C when it was new. It's always been screwy. RS-232 has no real electrical standard so it always is a crap shoot how the implementation is done. It's partly why it's so dead now in most sectors. I won't miss it when it's gone.
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Old 14-09-2009, 20:13   #32
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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
The instruments I used - ST60 - were probably some earlier make. (ST depth and ST60 speed - but not the multi - just two separate units).
I do think I see where we went wrong, since it does vary by the particular unit, and to be fair it's confusing. I did a quick scan through the manuals and it looks like basically the best advice is to look at the manuals for all the individual units you have aboard! Several display units for ST50, ST50+, and ST60 have NMEA output, but definitely not all of them! The good news is that Raymarine has done a really good job of making their PDF manuals available. And to everyone else reading this thread, please look at the manuals for the specific unit you have before making any calls on it.
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Old 14-09-2009, 22:02   #33
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small mini pc onboard

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Originally Posted by bobfnbw View Post
...
Plan is to build a small mini pc onboard for all this, not a laptop. It will output to both a nav station display plus a weatherized cockpit display.
Would be nice to be able to see the speed, depth, cog, wind and autopilot data.
I also have a raymarine R70 radar, and wondered if it outputed to a pc as well. My guess is no, but really haven't read into it yet. It does have outputs for nmea and seatalk on the back. I have the book, just haven't really dived into it yet. To busy with other things right now.
Would be nice to have a type of open source for all this, instead of the proprietary stuff out there.
Bob
you never mentioned an autopilot, if your speed/depth has no NMAE in/out, maybe the Autopilot has it. If not, then you do need a hardware multiplexer

Redundancy was my goal, the Raymarine E120 could do all navigation, but if it fails? With the exemption of the radar the PC does all too, at less power demand and serves as multimedia center too. Unless I am in very close quarter sailing, the Radar/plotteris off, the PC does all, dont forget, the PC handles radio and weather too.

PC I choose:
NEXCOM - Embedded, fanless pc, Digital Signage, car pc, tablet pc, security
read the specs for yourself, I picked a Cd2mobile 1.6 prozessor

free navigation software openCPN (for ENC, BSB, CM93/2)

very expensive Raytech RNS, I do not like it, badly programmed, but has radar overlay on PC (Navionics & CMAP, but does not recognize new C-Map reader, still fighting w it)

from my last boat still have FUGAWI (Navionics, ENC, raster) and Navpack (CMAP, ENC and homescanned paper charts; works with new reader!)
all of them I like openCPN most, small, fast still under construction though ;-)

P.S. I had to remove the HD, it overheats in the tropics, mounted 2 beside the NISE, no more heat problems, Btw., there are 2 software packs available, "Notebook hardware control" is free and CPUGenie, for automatic processor speed regulation, saves a lot expensive battery power
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Old 17-09-2009, 07:08   #34
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@bobfnbw,

from the postings above it's not really clear whether you need a SeaTalk <-> PC converter or not.

But if you need one - converters that can send and receive Seatalk from Nmea or USB can be found at gadgetPool.de

Orplid
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Old 17-09-2009, 07:16   #35
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I don't know whether this can help, but it might:

Memory-Map: GPS Mapping Software for PC and Windows Mobile

Richard Stephens, who runs MM, is a Farrier trimaran sailor and I think he's using something like you want to interface with his instruments.
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Old 17-09-2009, 08:22   #36
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@bobfnbw,

from the postings above it's not really clear whether you need a SeaTalk <-> PC converter or not.

But if you need one - converters that can send and receive Seatalk from Nmea or USB can be found at gadgetPool.de

Orplid
This is interesting.
Kind of what I had in mind. but I do not see any screen shots of what it would look like on a pc with a charting program.

Essentially what I would like to have on my computer, is wind, depth, speed and radar data from my ST60 instruments, as well as radar data from the r70 overlayed on a charting program. I would have a screen in the nav station, and in the cockpit. All data could be accessed from either place.
Possible even a man overboard routine as well.
And in between, entertainment, and one day internet anywhere in the world, fast and cheap.
My wife is a professor and will be working a few more years after I retire so to be able to teach via the net will be quite useful to us.
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Old 17-09-2009, 10:03   #37
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This is interesting.
Kind of what I had in mind. but I do not see any screen shots of what it would look like on a pc with a charting program.
Well - that depends on the charting program you're using.


A converter just translates SeaTalk data from your SeaTalk instruments (ST60) into a NMEA Format, that your computer can read and that your charting program understands.

Your Computer can't Read or Write SeaTalk Data directly.
It can read and write NMEA.
Now - if we want to get Data from SeaTalk Instruments to the charting program ( Windspeed / Depth / Water Temperature ...... ) we somehow need to translate it from SeaTalk to NMEA.

Or - if we want to send Position or Speed over Ground Data from your Computer to SeaTalk Instruments,we somehow need to translate it from NMEA to SeaTalk.

That's basically all a converter does.

!!! If your ST60 Instruments allready should have NMEA output , and if you don't want to send anything from the Computer to the SeaTalk instruments - than you don't need a converter.

Orplid
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Old 18-09-2009, 07:01   #38
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Thanks oprlid makes more sense.
I don't currently use any charting program. Have blue chart for our garmin chart plotter.
But its a small screen and rather than spending many boat bucks upgrading all this electronic stuff, I would rather use open source type software and display it on the pc.
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Old 18-09-2009, 08:08   #39
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bobfnbw wrote:
> I would rather use open source type software and display it on the pc

Sure - no problem. All that type of software expects NMEA for Position, Time, Wind, Depth and and and.

Frank
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Old 18-09-2009, 08:21   #40
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I tried Open Source (Open CPN) and some free stuff (SOB, SeaClear, i.a.).

The free stuff was (=/-) OK, the Open CPN was useless.

If on a PC then I would go for sthg decent proven tested things like MaxSea, Deckman, etc..

b.
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Old 18-09-2009, 09:06   #41
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... I don't currently use any charting program. ..
... I would rather use open source type software and display it on the pc.
Even if there is one who does not like openCPN, let the choice be yours. Ask the one who does not like it, if his favourite open source can work with C-MAP 93v2, the defacto standard for all circumnavigators.. Many others like it and it is the ONLY free program that works with raster charts BSB and vector charts ENC (entire US, China Sea & others is free) AND C-MAP 93v2.
Try openCPN, it is free! For the current version: Browse OpenCPN Files on SourceForge.net
for the most recent beta (it is worth it! be sure you install the current version first): opencpnbeta
for some free charts to start paying: Inland Waters Resources
more info about cmap 93: Let me google that for you
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Old 18-09-2009, 09:45   #42
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And for the actual problem that took Open CPN off my software list refer to the Open CPN thread and make sure the makers fixed the bug before you use the software and then end up on the rocks, which were supposed to be 1 mile away.

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Old 18-09-2009, 10:16   #43
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And for the actual problem that took Open CPN off my software list refer to the Open CPN thread and make sure the makers fixed the bug before you use the software and then end up on the rocks, which were supposed to be 1 mile away.

b.
I thought you should never rely on electronic navigation ONLY, I follow still the old rule of thumb and my eyeball.
in my understanding bobfnb is still in an early stage of planning, why spend hard earned money on software he does not need yet, but he could get used to PC navigation
if you where put to close on the rock, kindly discuss this with the creators of openCPN, I read that forum daily; no program is perfect, I have Raymarine RNS and this 600$ software is far from perfect too, worse, it does not even accept free ENC charts, you got to buy Navionics and it does not accept, despite its promises, the "new" CMAP reader, new since 2 years, NavPack accepted it out of the box.
There is an island missing in CMAP charts, since ever (Southern pacific)I know of some light houses with wrong sectors in brand new ENCs and in Navionics different chart scales show different lighthouses. How come???? What shall I do now? Not use any charts?
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Old 18-09-2009, 10:52   #44
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I am aware it is off this thread - but the 'missin' island' - which one is this? Amazing.

I know of one 'C-map' island that is there on the chart, while actaully there is nothing in this specific place on Earth!

And of a stone of NZ Tutukaka that shows in some software but not in the other ...

Life is real amazing.

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Old 18-09-2009, 12:50   #45
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Actually from what I know about charts in general and electronic ones in specific is that all charts are suspect.
Many are left over from the old days of sailing, and are not to be trusted in any way, unless you are using a mark 1 eyeball, a compass and good piloting. That is one thing I learned long ago, and still is revelent today, no matter how you navigate. The days of using electronic charts to pilot without your own piloting skills is not here yet, even with gps accurate to 1 meter. The simple truth is that no chart can be trusted in total.
I did download open cpn today. Wan't real thrilled with it, but then I only played with it for a hour, with one large area chart of the gulf of mexico. But it is a step in the right direction. And I appreciate anyone that puts that kind of work into a program and then not charge for it.
But as it stands now its now what I was looking for. I wouldn't mind paying for a good program, but haven't found the one I wanted yet. But I will play with opencpn some more.
And I have read the opncpn thread as well here on cruising forum.
Thanks for all that are helping me understand this. I appreciate your time.
Bob
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