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Old 18-09-2010, 21:41   #1
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Raymarine S3 Autopilot Help

Hi, I have a Raymarine S3 (T400) course computer and a ST6001+ control head I bought used. I also have the Fluxgate compass and a Type 2 linear drive. I do not have the rudder sensor. I set up the system in my garage to see that everything worked. First I checked the drive with power from a car battery I have and the clutch engages and the ram moves in and out depending on the polarity I use. But when I connect everything to the course computer (compass, control head, clutch and drive power, BUT no rudder sensor) all I get is a control head that beeps continuously and has a blank display. When I first power it on the display read St6001 for a second and then goes blank but keeps beeping. Is my problem with the lack of the rudder sensor? And if so why wouldn't I at least have an error on the display? Thanks for any help
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Old 18-09-2010, 21:47   #2
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Is there another way to check if the components are in working order, other than the drive unit which seems to be fine?
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Old 18-09-2010, 23:08   #3
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Pathetically low voltage? The thing will display messages about missing sensors and most other problems. But maybe the voltage is so low it cannot even start. Otherwise it sounds like you get to experience the Raymarine Service.
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Old 18-09-2010, 23:47   #4
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Ahoy, they really have to be set up in the boat, the compass "commissioned" and then the controller has to "learn" how to steer the boat correctly. Is is a spohisticated set of gear! I would assume that they are all OK?
Good luck from Keith.
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Old 19-09-2010, 06:39   #5
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Thanks Guys, I was thinking also about the voltage too. All of the components have there own wiring but I just ran the power to my car battery and even then I just jury rigged ( Mickey Moused? ) those. I hope that is the case. Has anyone used one of these without the rudder reference sensor? The newer X series of pilots supposedly will work without one. I was wondering if I bought the Rate Gyro and upgraded the system would it work without the sensor?
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Old 19-09-2010, 06:58   #6
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Has anyone used one of these without the rudder reference sensor? The newer X series of pilots supposedly will work without one. I was wondering if I bought the Rate Gyro and upgraded the system would it work without the sensor?
You might have to lie to it about what type of drive it has. The same unit (I believe) will operate the rudder-sensorless tiller drives.

Either way it should power-on in a better way than you describe. I think it will act reasonable even with nothing but power attached. I've seen the "No Compass" message before.
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Old 19-09-2010, 07:18   #7
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I also have an S3, but with a rotary drive.

This is a pretty complex unit which does a lot of self calibration once installed. I don't think you'll get much in the way of meaningful diagnostics unless you have the unit properly installed including a rudder sensor and actually start moving so it can sense it's environment.

How are you connecting the control head to the S3 brain ? You do have a seatalk cable between them, right ?

Duncan
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Old 19-09-2010, 09:11   #8
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Hi, The control head is connected by a seatalk cable and I am really just powering it up to see that it works in general ( ie. move the ram via the control head ). I pick up some 8 gauge cable that I will connect the computer to the battery more securely and rig a temporary switch to see if that works. Sorry I don't respond quickly, I am in and out but thanks
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Old 19-09-2010, 09:13   #9
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BTW I am out the door for a late summer sail on Buzzards Bay! Appreciate anymore comments.
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Old 19-09-2010, 11:25   #10
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majkmil,

I'm assuming you have the Comissioning guide (Document 81214-2), there's tons of info in there (you can download from the Raymarine site if you don't have it).

If you can't get anything useful on the display, check the seatalk connections then the Euro-style fuses on the S3 brain, there should be spares inside the panel.

There should be two seatalk inputs on the brain, try the other one.

You are going to need a rudder angle sensor for this set up though, seen a few on Ebay for reasonable money lately.

Enjoy Buzzards bay, getting any swells from IGOR up there ?

Duncan

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Old 19-09-2010, 18:05   #11
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Mine works great with a wheel pilot and no rudder sensor!
Keith.
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Old 19-09-2010, 19:58   #12
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Do I need the suppression ferrite for the test I am doing?

We had a beautiful sail today. Steady 12-13 Knts out of the SW, almost perfect. Nothing from Igor but we are only exposed to SW so pretty tame today.
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Old 20-09-2010, 06:21   #13
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Suppression ferrites is unlikely to make any difference to your tests, but make sure you fit them on the full installation on the boat.

You probably won't notice that they do anything, but you'll be thankful that you fitted them if you are in a tight spot and your VHF starts interfering with the AP.

Keith says he doesn't need a rudder sensor. Sounds odd, but eitherway I'm certain the brain will take account of the additional input if you have one. Without the rudder sensor, it must be using the change in heading only as feedback.

Duncan
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Old 20-09-2010, 15:50   #14
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I spoke to service today and they had me check voltages out on the seatalk interface. Grey and red was supposed to have 12 volts ( power ) and grey and yellow would fluctuate between 8-11 volts or so ( data ). I am only getting around 7 volts out of the red ( again power ). Then I put 12 volts to the red and grey seatalk cable to the control head and it started normally with the no pilot error and then seatalk failure. So it seems the control head is probably fine but the course computer is most likely the problem. The tech told me since I was so close to the N.H. office I should bring it in and they will look (fix?) at it quickly. I asked him if the repaired or just swapped and he said it depends. I am wondering how much it is for a refurbished unit or even an upgrade to the S3G version. Has anyone done a swap or repair and how did it go ( cost )? Thanks
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Old 20-09-2010, 16:19   #15
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Without the rudder position indicator, the ram may try to take the rudder beyond the rudder stops and break the armature. This happened to me when a new control head was installed and the installer (not me) did not set the limits for the rudder angle. The ram broke the cast bronze tiller arm on the quandrant in half.
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