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Thinking about Auto Pilot

Old 05-30-2020, 04:27 PM
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Default Thinking about Auto Pilot

I'm considering adding auto pilot to an older 30' CC with Yamaha 4stroke 250's. I typically run 50+ miles out in the Gulf but normally don't run in more than a 2' chop. I really just need something basic to keep a straight course and don't need much more than that. From the looks of things , going with Garmin, I'm looking at $3800 and from what I'm seeing it wont work with my existing Garmin 1040XS Chart plotter. Is there a cheaper way around this without breaking the bank or having to upgrade my existing electronics? The ride out and back is getting rough on this old man. Thanks for any suggestions.
Old 05-30-2020, 05:27 PM
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I installed the Raymarine Evolution 150 on my boat and love it. Interfaces to my Garmin 7610 through the network no problem.
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Old 05-30-2020, 07:16 PM
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You might want to look at Sitex autopilots.
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Old 05-30-2020, 07:19 PM
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Another fan of the EV150 from Ray
Old 05-30-2020, 07:40 PM
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Adding an Auto Pilot is a great idea. After Radar and VHF Radio, you will get more use out of it than any other system. I only have owned straight shaft inboard boats and Simrad is the best in this class. I assume you already have hydraulic steering. I had professionals install the first one. There is a lot of setup with the course computer. All AP use nmea 2000 so it does not matter if you have brand A electronics and use Brand B AP. Make sure you get the right size pump for your boat and engine size. You will have a better ride home with AP.
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Old 05-30-2020, 08:39 PM
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Yes, to clarify, I have two screens 1040XS and 840XS, Radar and VHF with AIS all on a NMEA 2000 Network. Sea Star Hydraulic single cylinder and tie bar. I did 158 miles Thursday with 2' chop and my hands were cramping on the way in, and still sore today. Makes you realize you're not 40 anymore. Lol
Old 05-31-2020, 01:11 AM
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With that setup you will likely need a system with a direct reversing pump for the lowest cost system. They vary in quality and opinions vary on who makes the best, some systems use rebranded units, furuno uses a furuno part number on an accusteer unit.

From there, almost anything can network to some degree on nmea 2000.

Pic features and go from there.
Old 05-31-2020, 04:51 AM
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Almost all autopilots will work with just a NMEA connection regardless of what chartplotter or gps it's coming from. So, I guess you are saying that you won't be able to use your Garmin MFD to control it. No big deal. Most autopilots have stand alone control heads available, which are actually sometimes more convenient than using a touchscreen chartplotter in choppy seas.
Old 05-31-2020, 03:49 PM
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If you are thinking of a Sitex and you haven't seen this post about Sitex with Garmin here is a good post from a guy that did it.
SiTex SP110C Review
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Old 05-31-2020, 04:26 PM
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Added a Raymarine auto-pilot to my Grady 330 Express 2 summers ago. Best boating investment I ever made. Don’t think twice. Just do it.
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Old 05-31-2020, 08:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Chessyman View Post
If you are thinking of a Sitex and you haven't seen this post about Sitex with Garmin here is a good post from a guy that did it.
SiTex SP110C Review
Thanks. Great post

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