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Old 25-10-2012, 00:28   #1
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Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

The earlier thread on AIS led me to take a look at this AIS transponder, which looks to be a good bit of kit, and has good reviews from members of CF.
So, hopefully those who have fitted them can help me on this one.
If I get one, I would be connecting it to a Raymarine E80 chart plotter. That is simple enough, but my chart plotter provides NMEA data to the VHF DSC, and only has one NMEA port.
The Watchmate does not appear to have a NMEA output to a VHF, and if I connect the watchmate to the plotter, I will need to change the plotters NMEA baud rate to 38000. OK for the incoming NMEA from the watchmate, but that will make the NMEA output to the VHF unusable.
Is there a practical work around, and by practical, avoid having to by a dedicated GPS for the VHF, or use multiplexors.

The Raymarine AIS, although less functional than the Watchmate, does have an inbuilt multiplexor which solves the VHF connection problem.
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Old 25-10-2012, 00:49   #2
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

A multiplexor would make your life a billion percent easier.

Out of curiosity why do you even want the vesper as opposed to a black-box on the e80? Are you planning on doing a transit with the e80 off for power reasons or something? Just redundancy?
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Old 25-10-2012, 01:03   #3
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

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A multiplexor would make your life a billion percent easier.

Out of curiosity why do you even want the vesper as opposed to a black-box on the e80? Are you planning on doing a transit with the e80 off for power reasons or something? Just redundancy?

Redundancy being the main reason, I do have a Furuno GPS 150 which supplies NMEA to the back up DSC VHF, so I could hook the primary VHF to that, but they are some distance apart, and I'm trying to cut down on cable runs, and general, having to tear down panels
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Old 25-10-2012, 01:30   #4
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

Ok, so I think you could do vesper out to the e80 in. That would get you AIS. No need to go the other way since the vesper has its own position.

Then you could go e80 out to DSC radio In. Which would get you alerts, and maybe be able to initiate a call from the vesper.

You might be able to work some magic with

radio out to vesper in vesper out to e80 in and radio in. I just dunno if the vesper would repeat a DSC call to the e80 to plot the course to the distress.
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Old 25-10-2012, 02:33   #5
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

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Ok, so I think you could do vesper out to the e80 in. That would get you AIS. No need to go the other way since the vesper has its own position.

Then you could go e80 out to DSC radio In. Which would get you alerts, and maybe be able to initiate a call from the vesper.

You might be able to work some magic with

radio out to vesper in vesper out to e80 in and radio in. I just dunno if the vesper would repeat a DSC call to the e80 to plot the course to the distress.
Thanks, no need for DSC input to the plotter, the VHF is not quite start of the art, and only has NMEA IN, it cannot send NMEA .
My concern is that I need to change the NMEA baud rate on the plotter to 38000 for the AIS data reception, but that changes both NMEA in and out.
Was trying to avoid having to purchase and fit a seperate multiplexor, not so much on cost, but running out of space to fit these things and keep it tidy.
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Old 25-10-2012, 08:38   #6
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

Does the E80 accept AIS over the Seatalk2 (NMEA2000) port?

If the answer is yes, you have a lot of options. Use a blackbox AIS transponder (Em-Trak?) and install an i70 for a backup display, all for about the same price as the Watchmate.
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Old 25-10-2012, 10:07   #7
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

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Does the E80 accept AIS over the Seatalk2 (NMEA2000) port?

If the answer is yes, you have a lot of options. Use a blackbox AIS transponder (Em-Trak?) and install an i70 for a backup display, all for about the same price as the Watchmate.
I'll look into that, Rayamarine AIS only works over NMEA 183 and Seatalk ng, not Seatalk 2. Dont know about other transponders on Seatalk 2
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Old 25-10-2012, 11:02   #8
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

Take down those panels and parallel the existing GPS to the two radios.

BTW, I saved a lot of time, trouble, and wire by paralleling my Garmin 128 GPS antenna to both the Watchmate and GPS. Both came with active antennas, powered by 5vdc across the coax. Both companies recommended against it to cover their butts, but it worked fine and I kept the Watchmate antenna as a spare.
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Old 25-10-2012, 11:04   #9
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

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I'll look into that, Rayamarine AIS only works over NMEA 183 and Seatalk ng, not Seatalk 2. Dont know about other transponders on Seatalk 2
I thought Seatalk2 & Seatalkng were the same...??
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Old 25-10-2012, 22:33   #10
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

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I thought Seatalk2 & Seatalkng were the same...??
And NEMA 2k
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Old 26-10-2012, 01:02   #11
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

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I thought Seatalk2 & Seatalkng were the same...??

Must admit, its all beyond me, but I did speak to raymarine about this just recently.
The E80 has NMEA 183, Seatalk, and Seatalk 2 ports. The Raymarine AIS will connect to the E80 via the NMEA port set to a baud rate of 38000.
The Seatalk ng system is the one which they describe as a back bone system. Raymarine AIS will work over this. So for the later model Raymarine chart plotters with ng, its dead easy to connect an AIS, just with a T connector and away you go.
Life is never easy.
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Old 26-10-2012, 02:20   #12
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

You might consider a separate GPS receiver to feed your VHF. That way you've got position data in your VHF even if your network goes down -- so your DSC functions are entirely separated from your network. Cost will be no more and possibly less than a multiplexor.
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Old 26-10-2012, 02:43   #13
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

If you don't need DSC in to the plotter, then you can just combine the vesper output to the radio and gps.

Set everything to 38,400 baud and should be good to go.

But I will say I think that's a mistake, when I hear a DSC call, or any radio call for that matter, 99% of the time I have no idea where they are talking about and the rest of the time I don't really know where I am.

it's Really nice to have a DSC distress plot on the chart so you can decide if it's 10 miles or 200 yards away from you.
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Old 26-10-2012, 03:13   #14
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

The new Vespar Watchmate about to be released uses a colour screen I believe.


http://www.vespermarine.com.au/marin...e-vision.html/

This one has wifi etc and may be the one you are looking for Nigel 1.

The WatchMate Vision AIS Transponder includes built-in WiFi, NMEA 2000/0183, GPS receiver and GPS antenna.
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Old 26-10-2012, 05:53   #15
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Re: Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

Thanks for the info everyone.
The present DSC radio cannot output NMEA, its only a listener, so if I give it a dedicated feed from a GPS then that problem is sorted, and the rest of the hook up should be easy. Must be a way of getting the NMEA data string from the Watchmate GPS to the radio. Worth waiting for the new model to go on sale. Like the idea of being able to turn off the chart plotter when its not really needed
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