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Old 14-06-2018, 00:30   #1
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Raymarine Smart controller looks dead - what to do?

Back on the boat. It's been 3 years on the hard. Found out that the smart controller is not responding. Screen stays blank, connected or not, pressing the power button or not.

Before spending 60$ on a replacement battery (!!) I'd like to know if there is a way to diagnose the problem. The fact that the unit doesn't activate when connected to 12V suggests that it may not be a problem with the battery.

---

Our Raymarine electronics run on seatalkNG. Our chart plotter is the diminutive A50. We used the smart controller as a mobile display, to keep an eye on vital data when on passage. A smartphone might be better. Unfortunately there doesn't seem to be an easy solution. From what I read, we could install a multiplexer and a wifi access point... Or change our chart plotter for a more recent model... Or replace the smart controller. All three options cost several hundred dollars. Am I missing something?
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Old 14-06-2018, 07:18   #2
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Re: Raymarine Smart controller looks dead - what to do?

Battery is really dead. When really dead, they won't recharge at all. You can change them with readily available lithium rechargeable batteries for just a few $$. By readily available, I was able to get them in a small town in Mexico right off the shelf.

Just take your time disassembling the unit. Use small screwdrivers etc to release the prongs carefully.
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Old 14-06-2018, 08:32   #3
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Re: Raymarine Smart controller looks dead - what to do?

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Originally Posted by jamhass View Post
Battery is really dead. When really dead, they won't recharge at all. You can change them with readily available lithium rechargeable batteries for just a few $$. By readily available, I was able to get them in a small town in Mexico right off the shelf.

Just take your time disassembling the unit. Use small screwdrivers etc to release the prongs carefully.
Good news if Raymarine has converted to lithiums. Our Smart Controller (about 10 years old now) has 2.4 V pack of AA size NiMH cells. Even easyer to find. You may need to remove the connector from old pack and solder to new one as those vary. Also buy a battery with as big capacity as you can find.
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Old 14-06-2018, 19:30   #4
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Re: Raymarine Smart controller looks dead - what to do?

FYI: Mine was purchased in 2010. Bat replacement was done 3 years ago, and all is well.
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Old 15-06-2018, 02:38   #5
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Re: Raymarine Smart controller looks dead - what to do?

Thanks for your inputs. I've opened the unit and unsealed the battery pack.

Not being familiar with this type of electronics :

1. On the picture, we can see a tiny (resistance?) soldered between the blue wire and a batterie's negative. It can be reused or should be replaced (or ignored)?

2. I assume that we can shrink wrap with ordinary thin film. Right?

Thanks again
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Old 15-06-2018, 02:53   #6
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Re: Raymarine Smart controller looks dead - what to do?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gauvins View Post
Thanks for your inputs. I've opened the unit and unsealed the battery pack.

Not being familiar with this type of electronics :

1. On the picture, we can see a tiny (resistance?) soldered between the blue wire and a batterie's negative. It can be reused or should be replaced (or ignored)?

2. I assume that we can shrink wrap with ordinary thin film. Right?

Thanks again
Yes, these are Varta 1640mAh NiMH cells. Exactly the same that were used in my a bit older Smart Controller. You just remove all the viring (including the resistor or whatever that was) from old batteri and solder it to the new one.
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Old 16-06-2018, 16:37   #7
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Raymarine Smart controller looks dead - what to do?

Ullar,

In post #3 you stated Raymarine have converted to Lithiumís. Did you replace your Smart Controller battery with Lithium? If so how long ago and how is the battery life going?
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Old 17-06-2018, 01:08   #8
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Re: Raymarine Smart controller looks dead - what to do?

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Ullar,

In post #3 you stated Raymarine have converted to Lithiumís. Did you replace your Smart Controller battery with Lithium? If so how long ago and how is the battery life going?
Sorry to for the confusion. I did not state that. That was stated in post #2. I've never heard that earlier. You should use the same type of batteries as were found in your controller. Replacing NiMH-s with lithiums you'll damage the battery and probably also yor controller.
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