Join Date: Sep 2012
Boat: Bavaria 36
VHF/AIS/NMEA C80 MFD Open CPN setup
I am planning the following setup in my sail boat:
MFD: Raymarine C80 (in cockpit)
Other: Seatalk network with Tridata, ST6001, SPX10 Autopilot, GPS connected to C80.
Laptop: OpenCPN, version 3.20 (inside)
VHF/AIS: RO4800, Mtech MT550 or Navicom RT650 or similar (inside).
Most of the gear is there, except for the VHF/AIS and the appropraite cables/connectors.
The C80 is currently working nicely with the other Raymarine equipment. I would furthermore like to achieve the following:
- Display AIS targets, etc. on a laptop running OpenCPN
- Display COG, SOG, etc. (as well as other info such as wind, depth, etc.) on laptop running OpenCPN
- Display AIS targets, etc. on C80
- Upload waypoints, routes from OpenCPN to C80
- Possibly display other data (such as wind, depth, etc.) on OpenCPN
- Not always having to run/rely on the PC.
I was wondering if I could hook this up as follows (see illustration):
A. Take NMEA 0183 GPS data (4,8kb) from Raymarine SPX course controller, and feed this to VHF/AIS (these are limited NMEA sentences, but the SPX is supposed to send them out on an NMEA port it has).
B. Take AIS data from VHF/AIS (38,4kb NMEA 0183), and feed this to Open CPN. Here I would need an RS232/RS422 - USB stick
C. Forward AIS data + routes/waypoints, etc. from OpenCPN (again using a USB-RS232/422-USB), and send this as 38,2kb to C80. Again, I would need a RS232 / RS422 - USB converter.
D. Get GPS-data and other NMEA data from C80 into Open CPN
E. When laptop is not running, I would connect B and C (by disconnecting USBs, and using gender DB9 gender changer, and some extra wire to ensure that pins are correct, and that I donít feed 38,2k NMEA into the VHF/AIS).
- Would the setup work as intended? Any caveats?
- I guess that it is possible to configure OpenCPN to forward the AIS data to the C80?
- Do I need RS422-USB sticks, or would RS232-USB suffice?
- Any large risks, as these USBs are not opto-isolated (i.e. the fact that I have two USB sticks hooked up), etc.
- Can I use the same USB-RSXX2 stick for both C and D (or do I need two, i.e one for receiving and one for sending)?
- Would it make more sense to mix in and forward the GPS sentences from the VHF/AIS to OpenCPN (instead of getting them from C80 - in my opinion no, but...)
- I guess that I on this setup would miss out on DSC messages to the VHF?
- Is there any software that could spit out NMEA sentences (from Open CPN) to the Ethernet port on the laptop as UDP, which I would then forward to a wifi router for broadcast on the boat to other wireless devices?
Thanks for any input you may provide?