Originally Posted by e37duff
i have a 1978 endeavour 10 net tons. i have been looking at the lates stuff out there. simrad, b&g, garmin
, ect. looking for pictures as to the mounting of the ram. simrad has come out with a drive unit called the dd15 but it is rated just shy at my 10.5 ton vessel wt.
Never specify an autopilot
'just shy' of the displacement weight of a boat, if cruising you will probably add another ton to this. Further, if you are over say 75% of the capacity of a particular drive system for a boat, specify the next size up. When using an autopilot
it is easy to overlook balancing the sails. When manually steering the boat you can feel 'weather helm' due to unbalance sails etc. and you can make adjustments, the autopilot
won't, it will try and keep you on course possibly overloading the capacity of the drive. Also consider that when in a quartering sea how much steering input is required to keep the boat on course, the autopilot
also has to do this. This is the biggest cause of failures I see with wheel pilot drives even when specified correctly for the size of boat.
Other points to consider with the aforementioned. The mounting and geometry is very important to the performance and life expectancy of the drive. If you are lucky you will have a convenient surface to mount the static part of the drive to. If not a platform or shelf will have to constructed of sufficient strength to put the drive in alignment and to absorb the transferred load. Also do not consider attaching the drive/ram to the existing quatrant of steering system. You need to have an autopilot tiller arm mounted to the rudder stock either a custom manufactured on or one similar to those supplied by Edson
. Beware, you may have to have the rudder stock machined for a 'woodruf key' with some arms. Keeping the drive separate from the existing system will allow you to manually steer the boat should the existing quadrant fail. ALso, if using a rudder feedback sensor you will also have make arrangements for mounting and connecting this.
I will reserve this post for the drive mechanics. This will be the most complicated part of the installation and unless you are proficient in this type of installation I suggest you seek assistancew from someone with experience.