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Old 29-11-2021, 12:15   #31
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

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Originally Posted by dfelsent View Post
Wingsail,
As an FYI.
I spent some time resuscitating a Hydra 2000 main processor. It turned out that for a time smaller electrolytic capacitors were prone to leaking electrolyte.
This was not a b and g problem but affected quite a few pc motherboards as well.
I removed all the caps, washed with di water and isopropyl. I repaired the corroded traces on the pcb and the unit worked for at least 5 years more.

Time well spent. Glad others do that too.
So how did you know you had a problem with leaking capacitors? Visual inspection? What did you see?
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Old 29-11-2021, 12:52   #32
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

Electrolytic capacitors, as the name suggests contain an electrolytic fluid. When a charge is applied, the electrolyte produces a gas layer between the plates that becomes the dielectric insulator. The gas has a high dielectric strength, so the capacitor can be quite compact due to less thickness required for the dielectric. If they leak, the electrolyte might be seen as a liquid. It is usually clear and watery. If it runs off or evaporates, corrosion of other components and circuit board copper traces might be seen. It can be quite labor intensive to do the clean up and repair, but can be worth it if one is willing to do the work. Hiring a repair tech might get as costly as new equipment. It all depends on how extensive the damage is, and value of the equipment. The repair or replace decision is a judgement call. The electrolytic reaction is the reason that electrolytic capacitors are polarized with a negative and positive plate. Connect them backwards, and they will be damaged. On the other hand, oil filled capacitors look look electrolytic capacitors on the outside, but the dielectric material is oil, so they are non polar. This makes oil filled caps useful in AC motor start applications where electrolytic caps would not survive alternating current.
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Old 29-11-2021, 13:30   #33
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

I connected up an old Raymarine autopilot brain to my 40 year old Cetrek electric-chain-hydraulic drive and have had a functioning autopilot for a few years now. It doesn't have all the new fangled stuff but it keeps the boat going straight while I take a dump. In my opinion most of these things are made in China today using eco friendly solder and are all pre-programmed to die 1 day after the warranty runs out. So YMMV but I am quite happy using old stuff that has stood the test of time. But then like others on this forum, I am quite willing to try my hand at anything. There are two kinds of mariners, those that can fix **** and those that pay to have **** fixed. The one is a slave to the other.
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Old 29-11-2021, 14:15   #34
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

Technology has moved so far, new instruments are better designed, easy to install and are packed with tons of information. IMHO it is not worth the time to resurrect the old instruments. I bought a "new to me" boat this year, took out all the old electronics which were not working, and installed all new B&G. Plug and play, easy to install, and the screens, flexibility and software are simply amazing. I installed all the instruments myself, not difficult at all.
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Old 29-11-2021, 14:40   #35
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

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Originally Posted by Hamish_ct View Post
Technology has moved so far, new instruments are better designed, easy to install and are packed with tons of information. IMHO it is not worth the time to resurrect the old instruments. I bought a "new to me" boat this year, took out all the old electronics which were not working, and installed all new B&G. Plug and play, easy to install, and the screens, flexibility and software are simply amazing. I installed all the instruments myself, not difficult at all.
The only hard part Hamish, is paying for it.
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Old 29-11-2021, 14:44   #36
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

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Originally Posted by wingssail View Post
So how did you know you had a problem with leaking capacitors? Visual inspection? What did you see?


It was a while ago. These were small caps, a few microfarads at 6.3 volts. I saw corrosion on the pcb and oozy liquid.

Dieseldude is going farther than I would as far as preventive maintenance.
I have though rebuilt a number of radios from the 1930s and had to replace all caps and resistors. Surprisingly the tubes were ok!

And as far as discharging caps the big ones can be scary but the itty bitty ones are fine.

The really scary ones are oil filled high voltage. Those can hold a charge deep inside and self recharge to a few kilo volts after being shorted for a while. Those get stored with bare wire across the terminals. Bare so you know the conductor is intact.
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Old 29-11-2021, 14:46   #37
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

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Technology has moved so far, new instruments are better designed, easy to install and are packed with tons of information. IMHO it is not worth the time to resurrect the old instruments. I bought a "new to me" boat this year, took out all the old electronics which were not working, and installed all new B&G. Plug and play, easy to install, and the screens, flexibility and software are simply amazing. I installed all the instruments myself, not difficult at all.

The new gear certainly has advanced features and convenience. But how reliable is it really? Does the software have bugs ? Will you forever be keeping track of new software fixes to down load and install ? How much time will you need to invest in learning to use the new gear? Will you learn to use all the features, or just learn the essentials ? Will you remember how to use it between boating seasons ?


How physically rugged is it really ? Can it take the punishment of shocks and vibrations? Will it be resilient to electrical surges and sags ? Will you find service for it at all ports that you sail into, and at what cost ? How long will the the manufacturer support it with tech support and spare parts?


The new nav gear has its conveniences, but there is nothing like simple old rugged proven equipment.
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Old 29-11-2021, 15:12   #38
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

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Sailormed, the paddlewheel speed sender I think is a waste of time. It will work for a while, but once a barnacle becomes encrusted in there it will stop turning.
Simply pull it out when you stop moving and stick in the plug. Poor maintenance is always a problem.
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Old 29-11-2021, 16:07   #39
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

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.. On my Cavalier 32 (NZ designed and built '73), I have the analogue speedo/distance and depth units shown in the photo...
My Cavalier 26, also NZ designed and built in the 70s, had similar Sumlog and Depth Indicator when I found her parked up a mangrove creek, and bought her based on the similarity to a Doug Peterson designed yacht I had just lost in a cyclone.

Initially I kept them just to fill up the holes they were living in, because I was used to my GPS based nav gear and 'fishfinder' Depth indicator that I had built a companionway board for.

When I had the boat out of the water for survey I had a look at the paddlewheel sender/ transducer - whatever you want to cal the thing and had the surveyor check the wires with a multimeter while I spun the wheel.
It showed a reading, so I cleaned the gunk out of the unit, and decided not to create another job for myself removing it and filling the hole.

On my first trip, not only did the Sumlog work perfectly, but it gave me 'speed through the water' as distinct from 'speed over the ground' that I got from my GPS unit. Something I missed from my old racing days.

The thing about a sumlog is that it is giving me a readingof the speed of the hull through the water.
Comparing that to the GPS speed over the bottom I know pretty accurately the effect the tide is having on my sailing. There are times when that is handy. Like when I am caught (and it happened often where I was sailing) in a tidal race between a couple of islands iin a yacht I know sails nicely at 5-7 knots, and is showing a speed of 2 knots BACKWARDS! on GPS.

If the sumlog is showing 7 knots through the water I can quickly find a heading that will at least make way.

As for the Depth Indicator.

I loved the 'fish finder' that set up with the transducer set in clear acrylic sealant (a polymer building product a lot like 'Silastic' but without the murkiness.
These cheap units that are made to be mounted on the transom of a tinny, are perfectly capable of firing through about 6-10mm of fibreglass hull, but sometimes finding the right spot where it will send out the sound can be an issue, with the risk of not firing ahead and down at the right angle.

So the old Analog Depth Gauge was useful.

Digital 'fishfinder' Depth Indicator - to give me an idea of the depth I was 'sailing into' before i hit one of the many reefs I used to sail through, navigating the Queensland coast. With the added bonus that it gave a good indication of what bottom I might be anchoring in later - and whether dinner was swimming around under me.

Analog depth Gauge - to give me the real depth below my keel.

Sorry for the long post, but that's my reasoning for retaining these old instruments 'if' they can be connected again, and 'if' they will still work - without 'wasting money' flogging a dead seahorse . .
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Old 29-11-2021, 17:13   #40
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

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Agree. I can see no reason at all why one should not try to repair older gear. Of course don't dump more into the fix than it would cost to buy new but otherwise, go for it.
Absloutly, my DataMarine depth display faded from decades of sun.
Reconditioning? $180.00. New LCD display? $25.00 Just like new.
Old stuff (like me) is better.
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Old 30-11-2021, 07:43   #41
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

Speed log is not that useful, I completely replaced mine nothing is original and still doesnít work - GPS speed is more useful except you canít read how much the tide is helping or fighting your course.
Electronic instruments are not that expensive even for a small boat, itís easier and less time consuming to throw them out. Especially those ones.
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Old 30-11-2021, 08:00   #42
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

The new instruments have Tide, Tacking angles, GPS, Mapping, Way points, Routes, Best routes, AWS, TWS Heel and much more. I installed all new B&G this year, cost wasn't bad, and am extremely happy with the performance, ease of use, ease of installing, weather proof, and flexibility of the screens. The price points have dropped significantly for B&G instruments. These instruments are for Sailors, designed for sailing, cruising, racing. The screens pull 0.5 amps, are compact, light and with the new technology today, can be seen in all conditions. IMHO, if you are going to replace old outdated instrument, it's worth a look. I am very cost conscious, but it was worth the expense.
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Old 30-11-2021, 08:20   #43
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hamish_ct View Post
The new instruments have Tide, Tacking angles, GPS, Mapping, Way points, Routes, Best routes, AWS, TWS Heel and much more. I installed all new B&G this year, cost wasn't bad, and am extremely happy with the performance, ease of use, ease of installing, weather proof, and flexibility of the screens. The price points have dropped significantly for B&G instruments. These instruments are for Sailors, designed for sailing, cruising, racing. The screens pull 0.5 amps, are compact, light and with the new technology today, can be seen in all conditions. IMHO, if you are going to replace old outdated instrument, it's worth a look. I am very cost conscious, but it was worth the expense.
Actually, Hamish, there is a compromise for people with the inclination and patience.

Many of the higher end instruments of a few years back (or in some cases many years back) have most, if not all, of these features. If you can have all of these features without buying an entirely new system, and you want to go to the bother of resuscitation, then why not save the expense?

Other benifits:
  • Less electronic trash in the landfill
  • A chance to learn or expand you technical skills
  • The pride of accomplishing something
  • You can spend the money saved on a new sail or two

On the other hand, it really is a low likelihood of complete success and when finished, they are still old (but then so am I).
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Old 22-02-2022, 14:17   #44
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

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Ahh, but it's my own labor. It costs me nothing and I'd have gotten 80 hours older anyhow whether I worked on the B&G stuff or wasted the time reading and responding on CF.
I have same attitude and low budget.
I am electronics technician but new to marine electronics.
My catamaran is 52 years old so old instruments would look apart.
If I could get some old sailing electronics for free. I could try to resurrect them to use on my boat.
I want to learn more about marine electronics so if I could find some faulty marine electronics, I could possibly fix some for myself.
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Old 22-02-2022, 14:42   #45
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Re: These old instruments worth resuscitating?

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It was a while ago. These were small caps, a few microfarads at 6.3 volts. I saw corrosion on the pcb and oozy liquid.

Dieseldude is going farther than I would as far as preventive maintenance.
I have though rebuilt a number of radios from the 1930s and had to replace all caps and resistors. Surprisingly the tubes were ok!

And as far as discharging caps the big ones can be scary but the itty bitty ones are fine.

The really scary ones are oil filled high voltage. Those can hold a charge deep inside and self recharge to a few kilo volts after being shorted for a while. Those get stored with bare wire across the terminals. Bare so you know the conductor is intact.
Yes, leaving a short installed will prevent self recharge. If this is done to equipment during repair work, you have to be mindful to remove the short when done, otherwise you'll have a disaster, or at least a burned fuse.
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