I'm not trying to hijack this thread, so if unappropriate please point me to the right spot
I'm very interested in this topic as my 'problem' is related but not quite the same.
When I bought my old IOR Halfton boat
, it came with a Autohelm 2000 that was (and is, I think) functioning very nicely.
However recently, I redid the navigational network integrating most if the stuff that was already there with a few new bits and bobs to interface all the stuff, and eventually all the data found it way to a raspberry pi running OpenCPN
The only thing that I couldn't integrate was the Autohelm 2000, as it has no NMEA0183 input, and I couldn't source the radio navigation
interface (Z075) that Autohelm once sold as 'interface'.
So finally I replaced the Autohelm with a Simrad
TP22+, which did the same job but had NMEA0183 input, so it could be steered by the computer.
And the Autohelm 2000 has been collecting dust in my attic every since.
Having read this topic, I was wondering if it would be possible to design an interface that either connect directly to the tillerpilot (using the connector normally used by the head
unit) or connects to the headunit using the connector that would have been used by either the Z075 interface or the remote control. The new interface would take NMEA0183 (old standards, but still supported) data like XTE, course, speed etc and use it to control the tillerpilot.
The reason I would like to keep the existing connections, is simple: I might still want to use the old head
unit. When all I want the tiller pilot to do is keep a straight course (because I'm going to change the gib), booting up the computer, gps
, etc is overkill ...
I think this should be possible possibly using an Arduino and a couple of relays, but I'm a simple software engineer
and not an electronic engineer
Anyone have any ideas and would be willing to help on this? I don't know about the situation in the US, but I have the distinct impression that there are still a lot of old non-seatalk Autolhelm units out there here in Europe
. I think it would make a nice project
being able to give them a new lease
on life. And ofcourse it would give me a nice back-up for the Simrad TP22+