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Old 02-08-2009, 12:33   #1
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Raymarine Cheat for Those in the 'Trade'

I am a certified (for whatever that means) Raymarine technician/installer. Recently I realized an interesting factoid about Raymarine digital radar. The radar cable is supposed to be connected to a "crossover module" before going to the display. The unit is not expensive, but can be circumvented. The issue that created this observation was the installation of a mast-mounted digital radar. The distal end of the radar cable (the one connecting to the crossover connector) had been damaged after multiple attempts to get it down a mast conduit and through the deck fitting, then down to the bilge, where it would be able to disconnected for future mast removal. Raymarine was less than helpful in resolving the dilemma, actually, they were obstructive. With the help of an extraordinarily perceptive and experienced technician (whose name is kept secret to protect him from adverse consequences from a major corporation) we uncovered the "cheat code" to resolve this problem. Instead of buying and installing an entire new cable (Raymarine said the ethernet cable plug was proprietary and unreplaceable) I performed a radical procedure. The initial attempt to simply replace the RJ45 connector is impossible since the radar cable insulation is just slightly larger than the diameter that will fit in a conventional plug. Realizing that the only conventional repair was to completely remove all wiring from the deck to bilge (major nightmare), I, in desperation, whacked off the RJ45 plugs connecting the radar cable and high speed network cable to the crossover module. My secret colleague and I had previously identified the color codes and connection sequences for the crossover module. This is it: There are four digital wires to deal with, plus a positive and negative (with ground wire) power supply. The combinations are green with green/white and orange with orange/white. Simply connect the orange to green and the stripes to their complementary colored mate, using either simple crimp fittings, terminal strips, or male/female crimp connectors. Tie the shields together for good measure. Boom! the system operates perfectly. This can be used to fabricate your own custom connector cables between a display and the radar. Hope this helps someone beside me and my compatriot.
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Old 02-08-2009, 13:34   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roy M View Post
There are four digital wires to deal with, plus a positive and negative (with ground wire) power supply. The combinations are green with green/white and orange with orange/white. Simply connect the orange to green and the stripes to their complementary colored mate, using either simple crimp fittings, terminal strips, or male/female crimp
Do you mean orange to Green
green/white to orange/white
positive to positive (?red?)
negative to negative (?black?)
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Old 02-08-2009, 13:38   #3
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I love stuff like this. Thanks Roy M!
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Old 02-08-2009, 15:04   #4
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Exactomundo, Talbot. We placed two RJ45 plugs (each with four pairs of standard wire) with the wire pairs in their correct sequences, then checked via continuity to confirm the complementary pairs, yielding solid orange to solid green, orange/white to green white in the corresponding cables. The radar cable has only positive red and a black negative that is joined to the green shield wire. Power cables connect normally pos to pos, doubled neg from the radar to boat ground. Also in the radar cable are four wires: green, green/white, orange, and orange/white. In the complementary cable of the highspeed connector to the back of the display, there are the normal 4 pairs found in ethernet cables. Use only the orange and green pairs for connecting to the radar cable. Trying to shove the radar cable wire pairs into the RJ45 plug was impossible due to an ever-so-slightly larger insulation layer. The RJ45 plug on the highspeed cable had conventional insulation. Raymarine said it wouldn't work to use RJ45 plugs for repair of the radar cable because the Raymarine plug had "ridges". That translates as "smoke this and anything will appear possible". Anyway, no more crossover modules for me in the future, and now I have a way to repair the radar cable if it gets damaged.
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Old 06-08-2009, 13:39   #5
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Of course, the question is: Why does Raymarine use such outdated ethernet chipsets in their gear? The computer industry years ago did away with the old MDI/MDIX confusion so that all ethernet chipsets automatically detect which is the client device (downstream) and which is the hub/repeater device.

You can plug any 5-year old or newer laptop's ethernet port into another laptop's ethernet port using a straight patch cable or a crossover patch cable. There's no technical need for a crossover module other than the fact that Raymarine uses outdated technology. And I don't buy that it's "marinized". If the US Army, Navy, Air Force and the Marines use it in the field, it's good enough for me..
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Old 06-08-2009, 18:44   #6
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Old 06-08-2009, 18:56   #7
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Marinized ethernet cables? Oh please!

Just pack them in some silicon grease if anyone is that worried.
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Old 06-08-2009, 20:02   #8
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The Ray C and E series have an abominable user interface.

Who designs this stuff? Seriously.
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Old 06-08-2009, 20:51   #9
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Hey folks, lighten up! Technology is a dynamic. It grows by spurts and increments, often on previous lines, sometimes by unique solutions. You guys sound so pompous when you make noises like you know better. If you did you'd be a lot wealthier and less crabby. Whether the product is a Furuno, a Garmin, a Raytheon or an iPod with nav features, someone is going to come along with a slick inprovement or gizmo that sends your original concept on the road to oblivion. I offered this idea because we all can use a little help in coping with inadequate technology. No one owns the absolute truth or ideal product. Everything changes, CONSTANTLY.
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Old 06-08-2009, 21:04   #10
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We have no problem with hacks for marine electronics. If it benefits the end user and is safe and legal, then that's all we care.
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Old 07-08-2009, 08:59   #11
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Thanks, David M, I was somewhat crabby myself and should not have overreacted. Beer, anyone?
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Old 07-08-2009, 10:13   #12
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does anyone here really think Ray used bastard sized cable without a reason, say, like, ohhh maybe just a little bit more extortion in the hijacking of their customers? This has nothing to do with technology but everything to do with extortion.

Companies that treat their customers poorly eventually pay, but by then the CEO has already cashed in his stock options and ordered his drink with the umbrella in it on his mega yacht. Ask General Motors and mention Roger Smith. Bring up diesel engines of the 80's and undersized transmissions behind V8 in full sized sedans..
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Old 11-05-2013, 12:33   #13
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Re: Raymarine Cheat for Those in the 'Trade'

I know this thread is well and truly past its use by, but I thought I'd give it a try.

I'm looking to replace my current Nobeltec radrar with a Raymarine unit as part of a general electronics upgrade. A major stumbling block is the radar cable, which try as I might, I cant get it budge, so the only way to replace it, is to pull the rig.

After reading this thread it occurred to me that I probably have all I need going up the mast the existing cable is 4 twisted pairs plus a heavier +/- power feed.

Any opinions on the likely success of splicing the raymarine terminations onto the nobeltec cable?
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Old 13-05-2013, 20:46   #14
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Re: Raymarine Cheat for Those in the 'Trade'

Interesting.

I'm currently helping wire a new big system (with some marine Ethernet) from another manufacturer (starts with an F), and they're also fond of specifying expensive shielded crossover cables. Just this week, since our supplier couldn't send us shorter cables so we opted to cut some longer cables and crimp new shielded RJ45 connectors on. I can confirm that it's just the orange and green pairs that cross-over and the blue and brown pairs are straight through.

The new connectors pass continuity tests; I'll wait to see the system running before I declare total success.
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Old 13-05-2013, 22:18   #15
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More evidence for my theory that *nobody* at Raymarine has ever been on a sailboat except at a tradeshow far from the water. What a bunch of knobs. But it's what we use and love and hate.
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