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Old 02-06-2023, 20:26   #1
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Autohelm disengaging when wind generator brake engages

Hi All-

Posting this question for a friend currently between NZ and Fiji.

"Could an mppt charge controller for a wind generator create a brief voltage spike on the house batteries when the “brake” is triggered on the wind generator? About 5 or 6 times now on this passage the Autohelm has suddenly reset and switched from auto to standby mode. Which is annoying because it always seems to happen when I’m about to nod off, or I’m making a sandwich or cup of coffee. I think it might coincide with*when the wind generator shuts its self off because it’s hit max voltage. So my current theory is the wind generator controller is creating a spike that’s high enough and long enough to piss off the Autohelm.

Happens between 3 and 18 hour intervals. It is a Rarmarine Autohelm with either a 6005 or 6001 control head.

Any ideas? He has triple checked for loose connections in the system.

Thanks.

john
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Old 02-06-2023, 20:53   #2
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Re: Autohelm disengaging when wind generator brake engages

Replace autohelm with a real autopilot, and all will be well.

What was the battery voltage when the autohelm decided to take a nap?
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Old 02-06-2023, 21:04   #3
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Re: Autohelm disengaging when wind generator brake engages

That might happen when the get to Fiji, just not now.

Unknown on the voltage question. We are texting via Iridium Go.

Thus far he has checked all connections and fuses. The last time it was a loose connection, but he has been unable to find one.

Thanks!

JR
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Old 02-06-2023, 21:10   #4
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Re: Autohelm disengaging when wind generator brake engages

Maybe set the cutout voltage on the windgen a bit lower?

Jim
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Old 02-06-2023, 21:25   #5
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Re: Autohelm disengaging when wind generator brake engages

Quote:
Originally Posted by jrace View Post
That might happen when the get to Fiji, just not now.

Unknown on the voltage question. We are texting via Iridium Go.

Thus far he has checked all connections and fuses. The last time it was a loose connection, but he has been unable to find one.

Thanks!

JR
What type of fuse, blade or glass tube. If they are glass tube then replace the fuse with a new one and see if that is the problem. Twice now I have had problems and the tube fuses looked just fine, worked intermittently and when replaced problem went away.
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Old 02-06-2023, 21:48   #6
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Re: Autohelm disengaging when wind generator brake engages

Thanks Uncle Bob. I don't know, but passed it along. Thank you. John
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Old 02-06-2023, 23:31   #7
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Re: Autohelm disengaging when wind generator brake engages

It's possible that the wind generator has nothing to do with it. If the wind generator is braking then you apparently have some high wind speeds. It might be the stronger conditions that is the problem.

As a test I might stop the wind generator, tie the blades do they can't spin, and see if that resolves the issue, or if it still does it.
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Old 03-06-2023, 10:15   #8
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Re: Autohelm disengaging when wind generator brake engages

Agreed Whollybee. He notices that when the autohelm has disengaged the windgen is usually putting out about 10 amps and they are in full sun (they have solar panels). He has dug hard for loose connections, but can't find one. Another friend suggested tying the blades to stop it for awhile and isolate the problem. I will let you know if he does this and it works. Currently communicating in little texts via Iridium.

Thank you.
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Old 12-07-2023, 08:32   #9
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Re: Autohelm disengaging when wind generator brake engages

Hi everyone,

I currently have an autohelm st50plus sounder installed on a Kirby 25. It’s been installed many years ago and has been running smoothly up until now. From what I remember, I was sailing close to a shallow area and the indicated depth fell to 3.8 feet and started blinking. I adjust my course, didn’t hit bottom, yet after that incident the depth was very inaccurate. A couple of minutes later it indicated a depth of 0 feet when it should have been around 20 feet. Now the screen indicates “DEPTH: - -“ . I checked the bottom of the hull…no damages. I checked the wiring and connections… everything seems as it was for the past couple of years. How do I reset the depth? Has this happened to anyone else? What should I do? Hope to hear back from one of you so that I could get back on the water!!
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