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simrad ap11 user experience

Old 04-02-2004, 07:48 AM
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Default simrad ap11 user experience

it has been suggested in another recent forum thread that boaters using the simrad ap11 autopilot have persistent problems with the rudder feedback unit (rfu) component of the system, particularly after it's been in use for a few seasons. i'd like to get some feedback from ONLY ap11 users in terms of their overall satisfaction with their ap11, and whether they've had rfu problems. thanks, bill
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Old 04-02-2004, 09:02 AM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

I had to replace my RFU after 2 seasons but never had another problem. They are the weakest link in the system due to the fact they are bombarded with saltwater. Simrad uses a tuned frequency based system which is less likely to fail then the more common poteniometers which depend on resistance. They do however fail on occaison although they have the best reputation in the business.
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Old 04-02-2004, 11:07 AM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

I have had two AP-11 units on two different boats and have had one for 6 years in total. The linear feedback sensor failed on my first boat after 2 years and was replaced under warranty. It failed again after another 2 years and was again replaced under warranty. The same component failed on my new boat after 18 months. It was replaced with the new, redesigned version last winter. Simrad tech support tells me they believe that the durability issue on this item is now resolved, but of course they just started supplying the new design last fall.

I had no other problems with the AP-11 and it does a great job steering (especially my new one, which has the rate sensor compass). A couple of friends who have them on straight inboards have had no problems at all over 4-5 years.

You should look at the new Furuno units. They have some interesting features and include a rate sensor compass as standard.
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Old 04-02-2004, 07:10 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

I've had mine for six years now, with zero problems. ( I have straight inboards )
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Old 04-02-2004, 07:33 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

I've had the same experience as John with my AP-11 for three seasons, 700 hours, it's been bullet-proof. inboard installation also.
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Old 04-02-2004, 08:40 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

Another satisfied user here. On my second one - first boat sold after one year with no problems. Current second AP11 has been trouble free for 10 months now.
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Old 04-03-2004, 12:30 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

I'm happy with mine.
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Old 04-03-2004, 03:38 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

Is there any preventive maintenance that will prolong the life qf the RFU?

Thanks!
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Old 04-03-2004, 04:59 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

I spray mine with CorrosionX on a pretty regular basis.
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Old 04-03-2004, 10:31 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

Thank You.
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Old 04-05-2004, 08:17 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

AP11 has been replaced with the AP16, which appears to be almost the same (pumps and linear FB are the same) , but with some user interface and device interface improvements.
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Old 04-08-2004, 11:42 AM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

I BELIEVE the new 16 also comes with the rate gyro also....., which is an option on the AP 11, one that everyone tells me is a must for improved tracking.
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Old 04-09-2004, 06:20 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

As a Simrad service center I can tell you that Simrad has had their share of problems with the LF3000 feed back unit. They have made improvements with the sealing of the inter componets, but as someone above said they are just in a bad place and get the heck beat out of them. On inboard application, they are a great pilot. The pilot is a good pilot and I wish they could make some big head way in resolving this RFB problem. Sold alot of them over the years. Keep in mind
all pilots that have RFB unit for outbaord applications will have a maintenance issue. The unit that Furuno is using on their new pilot was developed by Teleflex and is pretty good, but has had its problems over the last several years and I understand that there have not been any major changes in that design to help increase the life of the unit. Good luck.

PS There are a couple of alternatives.
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Old 04-09-2004, 08:48 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

Actually Chris, Furuno is supposedly appplying a new heat shrink to the Teleflex units and supplying different brackets.
I also understand that Simrad's version has been improved and has a much better survival rate.
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Old 04-09-2004, 11:43 PM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

It was my understanding that an additional layer of heat shrink was having to be applied in the field, but I maybe wrong. I am just concerned about the interface box. As I recall the ones I had to deal with had problems both the sensing shaft and interface box. It would be nice to know that there was something that would hold up.

Have a great day
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Old 04-10-2004, 12:36 AM
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Default RE: simrad ap11 user experience

If you guys need a lead on adhesive lined heat shrink I can help.
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