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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #11  
Old 04-04-2007
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There is some confusion as to the S1 designation as it is used for both wheel, tiller and under-deck pilots by Raymarine. My experience is witht he St6000 under deck pilot which performs decently using the SAME linear drive as the S1. I burned through one linear drive in 3 years of cruising and I would say it is adequate for well balanced boats up to about 25K lbs. ...I am sure the new electronics are much better than my old ones as there has been a lot of progress in rate compass technology. For an underdeck pilot, my personal preference would be for a hydraulic assisted drive but depending on your cruising needs and plans, the S1 system may be just fine. If you are going cruising there are probably beter choices.
I can't comment on the wheel or tiller versions.
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Old 04-04-2007
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There is a Type 1 core pack for the wheel and tiller versions, and a Type 2 and 3 for under deck versions. There is also, a choice of control heads as well.
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  #13  
Old 04-05-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailaway21
Raymarine appears to be moving in a modular direction, with greater compatability of their components.
The newest ST3000 electronics drives the older actuators happily, but the plugs and sockets change, adding things like NMEA connections. I wonder if the S1's use the same connectors.
Raymarine do the same for their wind instruments, I bust the ST50 masthead wind sensor, and the still available ST60 does not fit the ST50 masthead connector. Since the new connector socket is hard wired, I changed to NASA and saved a bunch. It remains to be seen how robust the NASA is compared to the much more expensive Raymarine product.
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Old 10-28-2007
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Raymarine wheel autopilot S1

I have had the S1 autopilot for a little under a year and have to say that its performance leaves a lot to be desired. Be aware that they have a recurrent problem with the cluth or lever disengaging when turning to starboard. I have sent the wheel drive in once and got a new one back under the warranty agreement and have to send it again in less that 6 months after being sent the new one!
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Old 10-28-2007
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I just installed Raymarine S1G with hydraulic drive on my boat. This is the version with gyroscope (something that lets it learn how to "drive" your boat automatically).

So far it was great. Even though my hydraulic steering is not in the perfect shape (going stbd. vs port is slightly uneven and I am still hunting down a few little leaks), so far the pilot had driven my boat for over 60 hours in some really crappy weather. The only issue I had is that with the program it selected for itself, it tends to overcompensate consistently when boat is yawing side to side (due to wake of passing boats or waves hitting it broadside) - it goes into a sort of feedback loop that keeps yawing the boat even more. I am sure it could be programmed to dampen this motion but so far I just click "standby", take the helm for a second and then turn it back on.

All in all on a 300 mile trip from Annapolis to NC, I only took helm during anchoring and docking. The thing is literally a lifesaver.

That said, your experience may vary. With a different drive the performance may be completely different too.

As others mentioned, using the wheel drive is probably going to leave a lot to be desired. Under-deck direct connection to the rudder is a lot better.

Last edited by brak; 10-28-2007 at 11:07 AM.
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Old 10-28-2007
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I replaced my ancient Navico belt drive that had been repaired 5 times and finally let go of life hard to port(with a crash jibe in 35knots) in a gale off Destruction Island. It had served me from San Diego to that point. I pulled into Grays Harbor, where I postponed my trip for better weather and a new S1 wheel pilot.

The S1 is a lot more complicated to install. Mounting the rudder pos. sensor was the most difficult step for me, as the space was so confined. It is installed way out of spec, but seems to work ok.
The pilot guided my 15000lb boat underpower, sail, in swells and 3knot currents with ease. Several days later it seems to develop a rather annoying "S" pattern in calm water that I couldn't eliminate in dozens of combinations of settings (response, rudder gain etc..).

Here comes the bad point. After a week of motoring up the inside passage the wheel drive stripped its planetary gear set clean. No more wheeldrive. This was very very troubling since it hadn't seen ANY HARD USE OR SAILING and we were just getting ready for our last 48 hour nonstop push to Sitka.

Now, a tidbit on west marine plus plan.... they apearantly do not come out to fix it if you live on an island in Alaska.... however they did provide me with a replacement. I think next time i will deal with raymarine directly. However, with my experience I WOULD NOT BUY THIS WITHOUT AN EXTENDED WARRANTY!!!

thats my $0.25 (adjusted for inflation)
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Old 10-29-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailboy21 View Post
Several days later it seems to develop a rather annoying "S" pattern in calm water that I couldn't eliminate in dozens of combinations of settings (response, rudder gain etc..).
The following SailNet article addresses this problem with autopilots in general:

Fine-Tuning the Autopilot, Part Two
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Old 01-06-2008
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I've seen a couple of people mention that they did a custom installation of their rudder position sensor and I think I'm looking at doing the same thing with my C&C 110. Any hints on how you mounted it?
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Old 01-06-2008
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Here you go...

I used lifeline parts and stainless steel tubing with Starboard marine lumber.. This may not work in all installations but it did on my last boat..

By the way for the OP my S1 Wheel Pilot is the finest performing auto-pilot I've ever owned. I've had three below deck units as well as Simrad WP's and Raymarine WP's but the S1 is by far the quietest and most accurate of any..
boat..http://www.pbase.com/mainecruising/r...osition_sensor




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  #20  
Old 01-06-2008
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I've ST4000+ MkII Wheelpilot on my H326 and its good but not impressive. I sailed on friend's H33 with S1 Wheelpilot and was immediately sold on it. It handles in lumpy waves and bustery wind very well. Wish my ST4000 to be like the S1. Maybe adding the Rudder Ref Unit (std with S1) will help my autopilot behaves better.
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