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Old 15-03-2019, 05:31   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 8
Autopilot has failed

My Raymarine auto pilot has just failed and I need some help to diagnose what is wrong.

The installation comprises
1. SmartPilot Computer – S3
2. SmartPilot Controller – ST7001
3. Fluxgate compass
4. Rudder position sensor
5. Drive unit

The fault shows thus: on Standby the rudder position (shown on the Controller) shows the rudder to be on full left lock, irrespective of the actual rudder position. When Auto is selected there is some movement of the rudder however an alarm sounds and “No Rudder” message is displayed.

My (low skill) testing shows:
• All Computer fuses are good.
• With the Motor terminal wires disconnected the Computer ‘Motor’ terminals deliver: 0 volts on Standby, 4.76 volts rising to 11.86 volts with Auto engaged and a turn of 30 degrees selected, this returns to 0 volts if an additional 10 degrees are added.
• The Clutch terminals of the Computer carry 11.86 volts when Auto is selected.
• Voltage is present at each of the Fluxgate compass connections (too difficult to make out each of the individual voltages).
• The Rudder position sensor wiring (at the sensor) carry a voltage, which changes as the sensor angle is altered (manually).
• The Drive unit is an unknown (to me).

Can anyone suggest what is wrong, any further tests I should try and what I should do to rectify the situation

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Old 15-03-2019, 05:36   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Houston
Boat: '76 Allied Seawind II, 32'
Posts: 7,528
Re: Autopilot has failed

Try to re-calibrate your rudder angle indicator.

It sounds like either the rudder angle indicator has failed, or the course computer has a failed rudder angle input

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Old 15-03-2019, 06:14   #3
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Re: Autopilot has failed

Please excuse my ignorance but....

How do I recalibrate my rudder angle indicator?

How do I test the rudder angle indicator for failure?

How do I test the course computer for failed rudder angle input?
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Old 15-03-2019, 07:00   #4
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Boat: Bruce Bingham Christina 49
Posts: 1,060
Re: Autopilot has failed

Find an install manual for the unit for resetting the rudder indicator.
Bill O.
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Old 15-03-2019, 07:33   #5
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: SoCal
Boat: Ericson 35-3
Posts: 52
Re: Autopilot has failed

If my memory serves to test the rudder sensor there is a min/max spec for resistance, the sensor is just a variable resistor. Check resistance across the sensor's travel min and max - should be in tolerance with rays specs.

The googles sent me to this:
Rudder Reference Test

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Old 15-03-2019, 11:00   #6
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Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Seattle WA
Boat: 45' Jeanneau Sun Odyssey
Posts: 254
Re: Autopilot has failed

Pull down the S3 Commissioning Guide and go through the Commissioning procedure from the start.

Starts on page 19. Also starting on page 59 is the fault finding section.
Richard Anderson, SV Mobert.
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Old 16-03-2019, 06:44   #7
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Posts: 37
Re: Autopilot has failed

Confirm the rudder angle positioner has not popped off from the quadrant.

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