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Old 28-01-2015, 13:53   #31
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

Anton - BTW thanks again for those great pictures. I think I'll do something very similar to make a mount on my quadrant.

I believe I've solved the raked rudderpost problem by simply using a "split" configuration - this allows me to have the ram living solely in the same plane as the quadrant by simply building the base for the ram normal to the rudderpost. There may be some rams that have something about them that requires a horizontal (in absolute, relative-to-the-earth terms) mounting but this Simrad HLD2000 ram doesn't seem to, according to simrad.

Thanks for the compliments - but where are the pictures of your NE38?!
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Old 28-01-2015, 15:12   #32
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

Chris, I have tons of pictures of my projects - but none of sailing! When we'd sail, it would be without a buddy boat, never raced, so nobody took pictures of us under sail...


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Old 28-01-2015, 16:03   #33
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

Chris - why do you insist on the simrad drive? you keep mentioning the same HLD2000. if you've already got one i understand. otherwise, i don't know how it stacks up against competition - but if i were buying new, from a store (rather than look for whatever happens to fly by me) - i would probably go with either an LS from pyiinc (closer to 2.5-3K, but they do have the ecopilot clutch for just an extra couple hundred) or with The Accusteer PUMPLA17-12 Linear Actuator from defender (2K - which is supposed to be equivalent to HLD2000L in its specs, according to defender; those are the drives used with furuno pilots, by default). both are split systems. people claim accu-steer is the quietest pump out there. i would also ask them (accu-steer) explicitly as to how tilted they allow their steering cylinder to be mounted (and perhaps also if the LS ecopilot clutch would work with accu-steer units - and why they haven't come up with smth similar yet; LS refused to answer this qn for me - they said smth like "we vouch it will fit our products, but it may or may not work with others, we have no way of knowing and no reason to take the liability"; the LS support was extremely helpful, they walked me through the rebuild, even sent me some parts for free, even though my unit is out of warranty).
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Old 28-01-2015, 16:07   #34
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

Quote:
Originally Posted by antoha View Post
Mark - i don't control this. which turns more (the rose joint or the rod) is a function of where you have more friction. the LS unit i have (it's the biggest they have, the 50ST20, which is several sizes an overkill but i bought it on ebay and there's not much choice there; you probably have a 40ST16) seems to have a very stiff rose joint, while the rod itself is not constrained and turns rather smoothly. also the friction in the rose joint is "dry" (meaning it takes more effort to get it started, but then it jumps relatively easily) while the friction in the rod is all "wet" (which makes sense, the ram is hydraulic and is built to minimize friction as it moves in and out, and around the axis is a byproduct of that motion).

Len - thank you, makes sense; you want the ram to be only pushing and pulling the pin, and not trying to be sliding the rose joint off of it (any force along the pin would be doing just that). the other point (about the rod hitting the quadrant itself due to this kind of play) is less of an issue for my installation: the LS cylinder is very big (much bigger than the b&g type 1 that i have as my backup for now), so the cylinder itself will hit the quadrant when the rod moves in before the rod does - so i had to make the attachment point on the pin high enough (about 40mm, which is the size of 4 M12 hex nuts or one M12 coupling nut).

the problem with "measuring things right" is that i'm always doing boat projects by myself, and i only have so many hands and my arms are only so long - and all these geometries on these old boats are curvy and space is tight (my under-the-cockpit crawl space around the quadrant is maybe 20" tall). excuses excuses, i know, but very often it's hard to hold it and see if it is actually fitting well, at the same time when done by one and the same person. i'm sure that if you've done it many times before you may have various helper setups for such tasks, but this isn't my case. i'm learning though...

thanks again!
Anton

Anton.
If I understand correctly,you lengthened the 12mm dia pin that the ram att. to on quad.-by approx 1"or so-the thickness of 4 12mm nuts.
Caution-I doubt you will have a problem,but keep an eye on pin.What you have done puts more side leverage on the unsupported portion of pin(above the top surface of quad). Watch that it isnt flexing quad. while on pilot in following or fwd qtr seas (the toughest a/p condition)

Suggestions on using an a/p:
A human can steer better than an a/p,over short distances,because you will subconciously turn the wheel when you SEE the wave coming.
The a/p has to wait til it is thrown a deg off course,before it can react.
However,an a/p will steer a better avg. course,over miles of distance,because it never takes it's "eye" off the compass,& never gets tired.
Some boats (long keel,etc) steer a straight course better than others.
Find out what your boat acts like by the following test-in not so nice conditions: (any pilot can steer in calm conditions,if working & set up properly)

With a/p off or stby--steer manually(wheel,etc) on big following sea.
Do NOT turn wheel-let boat wallow along & note how many deg she wanders each side of desired course for a bit.
Do same proceedure for quartering,etc.
Don't expect any a/p to do any better,over the same distance.
When on a/p,adjust your sea state,yaw,whatever term ur mfgr uses-to allow vessel to wander back & forth the above amounts without the a/p trying to correct.
Yes-you can "tighten" up the course steered, a bit,by setting tighter yaw control,but if you watch you rudder & ram,it will be operating 2-3times as often,which puts a lot of unnecessary wear on the hyd & mech parts of system.
Happy sailing / Len
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Old 28-01-2015, 16:25   #35
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

LS makes their pins roughly to that spec, except theirs is a bit thicker than 12mm. i had little choice as i wanted the same mounting pattern for both the LS 50ST20 and the b&g t1 (which i started with; i bought the LS later - always wanted a split system instead of integrated).

what i did was actually a bit trickier: to fit the 17mm LS rose joint, i pressed a bronze sleeve bushing into the rose joint - and now it has exactly 12mm inner diameter so it fits an M12 bolt with no play.

my logic was that the coupling nut (or 4 regular nuts, same dimensions) is actually supporting the single M12 bolt which i'm using as the pin (it attaches to the stainless plate with a coupling nut above and two regular nuts so it locks below, plus all the washers etc). there's no space between the coupling nut and the stainless plate, the rose joint (or sleeve bushing inside it) rests on the nut. so it would have to bend the nut together with the bolt, i'm sure that smth else will break before then.

but i will keep an eye on it when i'm operating it. plain old M12 bolts are relatively cheap, even in stainless.
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Old 28-01-2015, 17:05   #36
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

Len, now that I reread your post: I never considered the quadrant flexing, actually. It's solid cast bronze, the vertical part of the "T" being over an inch, and the base hugging the rudder post, over 2 inches tall. The rudder itself is balanced (2-to-1 ratio of trailing to leading edge relative to the rudder post, unlike some of the modern rudders which have almost nothing in front of the rudder post). The boat has a 26'8" waterline at rest, we don't go terribly fast. And we weigh only 16000 lbs dry (displace 10 tons but we don't load that much). Where in your opinion would be the weak spot on the quadrant?

The pilot computer itself is a raymarine s3g, which has a gyro and is supposed to be auto learning with nothing for me to adjust. We've actually never had a real autopilot on the boat; the wheel pilot I'm removing would spill its guts out every time it had to adjust course, I got tired of stuffing the belt back in. It was only good as a wheel brake, now I have to figure out how to rig one without it (all steering hardware on the boat is still original, made by LeComte, so I don't even have the luxury of just adding Edson parts; the good part though is everything is super over kill and incredibly beefy). But I hope that with a full keel (well, almost - modified with forefoot cutout) and detached spade rudder she should track decently enough in quartering seas, we just have to reef early.

Thanks again!
Anton


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Old 28-01-2015, 18:05   #37
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

Quote:
Originally Posted by antoha View Post
Here are a few more photos showing the details of drilling the quadrant and mounting the stainless plate across it.

I had to partially file bolt heads so they fit in the space. First I made a mistake (shown) by filing off the wrong corner : you want to keep as many facets intact so you can still use a wrench on what's left.

Attachment 96170Attachment 96171
Attachment 96172

The advantages of a "split" hydraulic liner ram that I see are: 1. You can mount the drive at any angle you want, even upside down - hence your geometry will be all in a plane; 2. You can mount the pump much closer to the autopilot computer, which makes for shorter wire runs and hence less ohmic losses and thinner wires (my drive has 4 foot hoses (they make custom sizes too, within reason) which means that I am saving about 4-6 ft round trip wire run, and if I could mount it so the hoses were straight it would be 8 ft of course but the ram is mounted across the hull rather than along it); 3. If either ram or drive fails separately down the line, I can replace just the failed component and not the whole system. 4. This specific manufacturer sells a low power consumption clutch for their systems - otherwise you are burning 15 watts just to keep the drive engaged, regardless of how much the pilot itself is working.


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Looking at photos of your bronze quad.,it seems robust enough for displacement quoted & using it as a tiller arm IMHO.
Plus you have stiffened it substantially by adding the ss plate & setting the plate down "inside" of the casting & using 4 bolts.
I don't see how you could make it any stronger.
If your ram is pushing on same plane as quadrant,you should be OK IMHO.
Have a good long look at it when piloting. / Len
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Old 28-01-2015, 20:52   #38
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

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Originally Posted by antoha View Post
Chris - why do you insist on the simrad drive? you keep mentioning the same HLD2000. if you've already got one i understand. otherwise, i don't know how it stacks up against competition - but if i were buying new, from a store (rather than look for whatever happens to fly by me) - i would probably go with either an LS from pyiinc (closer to 2.5-3K, but they do have the ecopilot clutch for just an extra couple hundred) or with The Accusteer PUMPLA17-12 Linear Actuator from defender
oh I'm still shopping, the simrad is just a starting point, good price from defender, etc. I'll look into these you mention...
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Old 29-01-2015, 06:37   #39
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

Got it. Well, if you go to Europe you may want to buy LS or Jefa there; US importers raised their prices (again) because they are going off the 1.41 exchange rate from last march, and now it's under 1.15...

Have you considered mechanical drives? The choices are raymarine with their worm gear actuators, which people have been using for a while so they are probably reliable enough; Jefa (check out their web page) with linear drive (same as garmin type A) and direct drive (same as simrad dd15); and lewmar with mamba type drives similar to jefa's direct drive.

And then there are sprocket drives: raymarine, Jefa, and lewmar all make them, but I also think b&g has one, not sure about others. Most compact option, no need to drill quadrant, the only downside is if your cable snaps you have no fallback option - but for the cost of linear drive installation you can have a dozen backup cables made to carry with you just in case.

I started the project at the time when I had no access to the emergency tiller fitting (the access plate was stuck solid), so I opted for the more difficult option (linear rather than sprocket). As to mechanical vs hydraulic - whatever came to eBay, I wasn't set on anything in particular.

If your RR is as shown on sailboatdata.com, you have an attached rudder which means you don't need as beefy an autopilot. If you snoop around the LS web site, they have a calculator which helps determine max torque your drive must exert - and if your boat is out of the water you can measure the rudder, that's what goes into the calculator (together with boat speed, it's not so much the displacement that counts).

Where are you mounting the drive, where do you have space? I wanted to have it under the cockpit floor, but it's only as wide as the quadrant travel, so I couldn't - even with a Jefa direct drive. So I ended up mounting the ram in s/b sail locker, and the pump on a shelf off a bulkhead between the salon and that sail locker - so hopefully the wires from computer to pump can be very short. There's also room for sound insulation, in case the pump is loud.

Anton


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Old 29-01-2015, 07:23   #40
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

if you have a very powerful arm, you might want to consider some form of shear pin ( or an adjustable pressure release valve would be my preference ) I have seen a whole quadrant smashed by a hydraulic ram.

dave
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Old 29-01-2015, 08:51   #41
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

Dave,

here are the quick couplings from LS: LECOMBLE & SCHMITT - steering systems for sailing boats : Quick couplings (LS France - official web site)
in a similar setup from B&G they call it a ram bolt or tiller bolt, and it's here: http://www.bandg.com/Documents/produ...language=en-GB
(page 116 of 128, or you can search the PDF).
neither manual talks about shear pins or pressure release valves, and these features are not built into the drive or rose joint or coupling to it. (such couplings are expensive to machine to specs btw, unless you have your own shop. i have a b&g ram bolt which came with my ram, and fashioned one for the LS ram out of a bolt and such to fit the mounting pattern.)

i've spoken with marine professionals at a couple of boat yards, folks whose opinion i respect, and they also didn't mention any such in the context of my setup. do you have links to such installations or items for sale?

thank you!
Anton
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Old 29-01-2015, 08:58   #42
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

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Originally Posted by antoha View Post
But they make very nice looking mechanical (not hydraulic) equipment I was considering, especially their direct drive (same as simrad dd15 or whatever it's called). They however said that for my application that's overkill and their linear drive (same as garmin type a) would be a better fit.
Our install is similar to yours but we were able to get a edson tiller arm to fit - barely. This is nice because we now have triple steering systems in case something happens with the edson steering.

We have the DD15 drive and so far it works like a champ. Similar to you, we also built a base that was glassed to the hull. The base needs to be very very stout to avoid flexing under extreme pressure and sudden jolts on the rudder. Our DD15 is a simrad branded Jeffa. The geometry to make this all work together can be complex.
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Old 29-01-2015, 09:11   #43
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

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Dave,

here are the quick couplings from LS: LECOMBLE & SCHMITT - steering systems for sailing boats : Quick couplings (LS France - official web site)
in a similar setup from B&G they call it a ram bolt or tiller bolt, and it's here: http://www.bandg.com/Documents/produ...language=en-GB
(page 116 of 128, or you can search the PDF).
neither manual talks about shear pins or pressure release valves, and these features are not built into the drive or rose joint or coupling to it. (such couplings are expensive to machine to specs btw, unless you have your own shop. i have a b&g ram bolt which came with my ram, and fashioned one for the LS ram out of a bolt and such to fit the mounting pattern.)

i've spoken with marine professionals at a couple of boat yards, folks whose opinion i respect, and they also didn't mention any such in the context of my setup. do you have links to such installations or items for sale?

thank you!
Anton

The pressure relief valves in the power pack will be set at typically 500psi. That typically handles most cases. If you have a very over specced system, which in generally is a good thing, You might want to consider some sacrificial part. This was a comment to me ( I've never done it ) and I have seen a quadrant destroyed by a Ram. The primary problem with shear pins ( i.e. the pin in the quadrant , is sizing the pin to handle all normal expected loads)

What I have seen done is that the AP ram mount is designed to fail before the quadrant damages itself , That was what the installer claimed was the case.

The simple test would be to jam the quadrant and engage the AP, !
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Old 29-01-2015, 09:11   #44
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

zboss, cool - do you have photos of your install? especially the geometry! buying the electronics (autopilot package) and the drive now seems like the easy part, the real meat of it is the laying everything out and the installation...
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Old 29-01-2015, 09:25   #45
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Re: Attaching ram to quadrant

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zboss, cool - do you have photos of your install? especially the geometry! buying the electronics (autopilot package) and the drive now seems like the easy part, the real meat of it is the laying everything out and the installation...
Hi, here you can see the drive mounted to the base and then a picture of the tiller arm with attachment.

Its a very compact arrangement. We originally looked into fitting a hydraulic ram but the length of the ram (even the octopus) would have impacted our available space in the locker, so it was a no go.

BTW - this is the first base we built... we have since updated it with some additional strength but it looks pretty much the same and is in the same orientation.
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