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Old 18-09-2011, 07:24   #16
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Re: Well, THERE'S the Problem . . . (Trashed My Wheel Pilot)

Mine's broken twice with fairly minimal use. They've been good about fixing it under warranty, but that doesn't do one much good when one is "out there".

My warranty is almost up, so I'm trying to figure out what to do next. Not many options these days.
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Old 18-09-2011, 08:20   #17
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Re: Well, THERE'S the Problem . . . (Trashed My Wheel Pilot)

It certainly seems nuts to use plastic gearing in this application.

I've never used these guys but they apparently are happy to make small quantities. The calculator alone is fun.

I realize this won't do much good in current location.

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Old 18-09-2011, 10:01   #18
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Re: Well, THERE'S the Problem . . . (Trashed My Wheel Pilot)

I think your boat is trying to tell you it needs a more robust autopilot--something below decks with a hydraulic linear drive. The plastic gears were just the weakest link in the chain--if you upgrade them, something else is going to break.

If you think beating in F8 is hard on an autopilot, try broad reaching.
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Old 18-09-2011, 11:09   #19
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Re: Well, THERE'S the Problem . . . (Trashed My Wheel Pilot)

I've brought a CPT Autopilot for Boracay.

Pros: Looks like the gears are pretty solid. Need to ask the maker what they're made of.
Did steer the boat in some pretty difficult conditions.
Not expensive.

Cons: I'd prefer a more robust system for mounting the drive box.
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Old 21-09-2011, 07:43   #20
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Re: Well, THERE'S the Problem . . . (Trashed My Wheel Pilot)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamel View Post
Well, I'm abit surprised a few other bits of the boat did'nt give up the ghost too!

Not for me ...going to windward in force 8 gale conditions...crazy!

"Sailing to me is all about enjoyment not endurance"! You can quote me.
Well, the gale was contrary to the weather forecast, and I had to beat away from horrendously bad sholes along the southern coast of Saarenmaa. Not my plan, nor my idea of a good time, by any means. But sometimes, s**t happens and you just have to face it.
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Old 21-09-2011, 07:47   #21
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Re: Well, THERE'S the Problem . . . (Trashed My Wheel Pilot)

So... I finally get the replacement gearbox, get it installed and everything tests out fine. Resume my trip, and #&*(@#& two days later, in a very pleasant F5 beam reach, the plastic around the clutch wheel / lever axle fails!

I suspect it was stressed during the gale, and was just waiting to fail, but @#&%*(@#& this Mk2 is a toy. I wouldn't put it on anything bigger than a 22ft day cruiser, and only use it under 10kn of wind.

I'm back at my home marina now, after 4 days of solo sailing sans autopilot, and will definitely be looking for a replacement drive of some sort ASAP.

Does anyone know how difficult it would be to adapt a non-marine (i.e. reasonably priced) ram drive with clutch, mounted to the quadrant, to the Raymarine controller? It has the connections for the Raymarine branded ram drive, but that is IMO ridiculously expensive.

Or should I consider converting from pull-pull cable steering to hydrolic, and go with a hydrolic ram drive?

Suggestions?
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Old 21-09-2011, 07:59   #22
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Re: Well, THERE'S the Problem . . . (Trashed My Wheel Pilot)

you cant beat a linear drive hydhralic unit,but expensive,and will need gyro,heading unit,drive computer and rudder feed back.

ive used the belt driven wheel pilots on boats up to 60ft so can reccomend the auto helm 3000 and the cpt units
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