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Old 26-02-2013, 08:19   #46
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Re: VHF / UHF HAM Radio Antenna ... and AIS?

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Originally Posted by Auspicious View Post
Hi Nick! Would you please report back on the Actisense box when you have experimented with it a bit?
Did that for a bit with Marc on Reach a year ago and he has been using it since then. It's a great converter with full AIS support. I'm gonna use it to put AIS on my N2K bus until I (if ever) get a N2K AIS unit.

Next thing I need is a N2K to Ethernet converter. To get stuff to the iPads etc.

cheers,
Nick.
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Old 26-02-2013, 13:44   #47
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Re: VHF / UHF HAM Radio Antenna ... and AIS?

Regarding the Actisense - we have both the Maretron USB100 and an Actisense and have been using them for a year now. More and more, the Maretron is heading for a date with the fishes. The Actisense is so much better, more capabilities and less frustrating than the Maretron.

And cheaper.

Mark
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Old 26-02-2013, 14:54   #48
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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
Regarding the Actisense - we have both the Maretron USB100 and an Actisense and have been using them for a year now. More and more, the Maretron is heading for a date with the fishes. The Actisense is so much better, more capabilities and less frustrating than the Maretron.

And cheaper.

Mark
True, but I just adjusted my Maretron heading sensor and that worked like a charm with the USB100 and N2KAnalyzer. No, the real looser is the AT10 from Simrad, piece of junk.

Just finished up Navnet Ethernet network.. Jay!! all shielded, industrial DC powered switch, can do nav incl. AIS and radar with wireless iPad anywhere aboard. Times change
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Old 26-02-2013, 17:10   #49
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Re: VHF / UHF HAM Radio Antenna ... and AIS?

Yes, without a Maretron MFD, the USB100 is necessary for adjusting and updating other Maretron gear. Updating is a loose definition - the most current firmware is many years old. And adjusting can drive one crazy because the software actually does not work well for that function. One must use the virtual DCM250 instrument inside the software for that. I only found this out after asking tech support why my adjustments were not staying permanent and them telling me that the software never worked well and to use the virtual instrument instead.

I thought he AT10 was abandoned a couple years ago. Nobody ever thought that was much good.

The Actisense is becoming the hands-on winner on our boat. Heck, I just fired up Airmar's Weathercaster software, which is only supposed to work with Airmar's equipment and PC interface and the Actisense recognized and interfaced to it and passed on all of the Maretron and Airmar instrument data to it. The Maretron USB100 refused to work with it in any way.

I also cannot get the Maretron to work well with OpenCPN. Further, the Maretron will not interface with the Simrad AC42 autopilot through Coastal Explorer. Actisense works well with OpenCPN and controls the AP in CE, although I cannot get it to work with the AP in OpenCPN in either the Mac or PC flavors.

One warning: when you use the Actisense for AIS, it severely limits the PGN sentences it translates for the rest of the 0183 systems. Check their website for the datasheets on which data it translates. It does work well for AIS on N2K, though. And Furuno refuses to support AIS on N2K anyway...

And Actisense makes Mac drivers. Maretron? No.

This isn't a Maretron rant - I love the ultrasonic wind, the GPS and the cabling and connectors. And I wish I had bought the heading sensor (although I don't have any complaints about the Simrad one). The USB100, however, seems very dated and limited (and endlessly frustrating) compared to its competitors.

I have not tried running N2KAnalyzer on the Actisense. It just might surprise me!

Mark
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Old 26-02-2013, 20:19   #50
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Holy smokes, have you guys seen the specs on the new AIS transponders from Vesper Marine?! I'm gonna spend $750 on the black box version soon. The AIS XB-8000. It does N2K, 0183, and wifi. It will take data from the networks and, together with AIS, send it onto your wifi to your iPad for iNavX or whatever. They also have a touch screen version. The Simrad NAIS-400 also looks good but no wifi. Shipmodul has a 0183 to wifi/ethernet mux too and that is 1/3rd the price of the whole Vesper 8000.

http://www.vespermarine.com/transpon...nsponder.html/
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Old 26-02-2013, 23:03   #51
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Re: VHF / UHF HAM Radio Antenna ... and AIS?

There was a recent thread on the Vespar units.

Vespermarine Watchmate AIS Transponder

The developer is a cruiser from NZ and continually testing developing the product. He is very approachable and participated in the thread.

http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...ins-47772.html

Cheers
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Old 26-02-2013, 23:48   #52
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Re: VHF / UHF HAM Radio Antenna ... and AIS?

The AIS XB-8000 looks like someone has been really listening to what everyone actually want out of a system. I am stunned by the abilities of the APRS add this to it and it feels like I may actually have moved into the 21 century. Now have to find a way to pay for it all.

Mark
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Old 13-05-2013, 12:36   #53
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I installed the XB-8000 last week, hooked it up to a dedicated AIS antenne (at the stern about 10 ft above the water) and OpenCPN 3.2 using a usb cable.
Most NMEA183 equipment still uses serial I/O, But my pc's only has usb, the Vesper supports both and also has a driver for usb to serial emulation for download.
The Gps antenna is also included and has small connector that can easily be stuck through small holes and in my case the electrical wiring tube layered in the hull.
Having a separate antenna for the AIS made it all easy. An antenna splitter doesn't come cheap and 2 antennas keep things simple, thanks to the xb-8000.
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Old 13-05-2013, 12:38   #54
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Originally Posted by Verezano View Post
I installed the XB-8000 last week, hooked it up to a dedicated AIS antenne (at the stern about 10 ft above the water) and OpenCPN 3.2 using a usb cable.
Most NMEA183 equipment still uses serial I/O, But my pc's only has usb, the Vesper supports both and also has a driver for usb to serial emulation for download.
The Gps antenna is also included and has small connector that can easily be stuck through small holes and in my case the electrical wiring tube layered in the hull.
Having a separate antenna for the AIS made it all easy. An antenna splitter doesn't come cheap and 2 antennas keep things simple, thanks to the xb-8000.
So, how does it work? Did you use the wifi option yet?
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Old 13-05-2013, 13:04   #55
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I replaced my "old" nasa ais receiver, so I could use the existing 12v dc and antenna plug. Spend some time getting the gps cable from the stern through tiny holes to the device. Once connected and powered I configured the xb-8000 using the iphone/ipad app over the wifi using the default wifi security settings as documented.
It needs your mmsi, call sign, vessel type, sailing boat in my case, and optional boat length, width and draft.
After that it starts working and sending data over serial, usb and wifi. I tried iNavx on the ipad and that worked fine.
I intent to use the wifi connection to a Panda board arm computer using an lcd in an ipx5 water resistant casing. The panda will run OpenCPN
That way I can use it outside with only 12v dc. For now it is connected To the pc inside running OpenCPN. That now gets the ais and gps data over the usb connection at 38400 baud.
An ais transponder is very convenient sailing in the english channel, 1000 feet+ container ships can now see us on their ais screen.
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Old 13-05-2013, 13:08   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Verezano View Post
I replaced my "old" nasa ais receiver, so I could use the existing 12v dc and antenna plug. Spend some time getting the gps cable from the stern through tiny holes to the device. Once connected and powered I configured the xb-8000 using the iphone/ipad app over the wifi using the default wifi security settings as documented.
It needs your mmsi, call sign, vessel type, sailing boat in my case, and optional boat length, width and draft.
After that it starts working and sending data over serial, usb and wifi. I tried iNavx on the ipad and that worked fine.
I intent to use the wifi connection to a Panda board arm computer using an lcd in an ipx5 water resistant casing. The panda will run OpenCPN
That way I can use it outside with only 12v dc. For now it is connected To the pc inside running OpenCPN. That now gets the ais and gps data over the usb connection at 38400 baud.
An ais transponder is very convenient sailing in the english channel, 1000 feet+ container ships can now see us on their ais screen.
On your PC you can install Splashtop streamer and then on your iPad the Splashtop app and you get OpenCPN on the iPad, wireless.
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Old 20-05-2013, 13:24   #57
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Re: VHF / UHF HAM Radio Antenna ... and AIS?

For comparison and to get an idea of the range you can expect from an AIS receiver using a dedicated antenna atop a 32 foot mast (40 feet above the water), you can look here at my results of data fed to marinetraffic.com (in metric units): AIS Receiving Station's Details. The AIS data traffic is taken from the serial port on my ACR AIS Class B transponder and sent out via the Internet.

You can also see the traffic I am posting to aprs.fi as source "N8QH" here - click on the vessels around Half Moon Bay to see the data source in the vessel data: Google Maps APRS.

I get solid coverage of Class A transponders out to a 40 nm radius, and intermittent contacts out to 100 nm. Class B sources are received out to about 15 miles. Even though I'm surrounded by mountains to the north and east, I still get traffic in the Central S.F. Bay.
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Old 20-05-2013, 13:27   #58
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Re: VHF / UHF HAM Radio Antenna ... and AIS?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpt Pat View Post
For comparison and to get an idea of the range you can expect from an AIS receiver using a dedicated antenna atop a 32 foot mast (40 feet above the water), you can look here at my results of data fed to marinetraffic.com: AIS Receiving Station's Details. The AIS data traffic is taken from the serial port on my ACR AIS Class B transponder and sent out via the Internet.

You can also see the traffic I am posting to aprs.fi as source "N8QH" here - click on the vessels around Half Moon Bay to see the data source in the vessel data: Google Maps APRS.

I get solid coverage of Class A transponders out to a 40 mile radius. Class B sources are received out to about 15 miles.
That's good to know. That's almost exactly the height of my first spreader, where my ham/ais antenna is. I'm still testing the range; hope it corresponds to yours.
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Old 20-05-2013, 13:35   #59
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That's good to know. That's almost exactly the height of my first spreader, where my ham/ais antenna is. I'm still testing the range; hope it corresponds to yours.
Did you get anything done with the connectors? I'm gonna order crimp versions too, and install antennas on two cars etc. so lots of work here too
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Old 20-05-2013, 13:41   #60
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Re: VHF / UHF HAM Radio Antenna ... and AIS?

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Did you get anything done with the connectors? I'm gonna order crimp versions too, and install antennas on two cars etc. so lots of work here too
The spreader antenna spontaneously started working.

But I'm going up and changing them all in a couple weeks, when I'm back on the boat.

Yes, crimp versions, and a proper crimper. No soldering in a bosun's chair for me I figured if I screwed it up when the mast was down, then my chances of not screwing up aloft are approximately nil point nil
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