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post #1 of 9 Old 07-08-2012 Thread Starter
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NMEA - Not More Electronics Agony!

I just bought a Raymarine e7 and am trying to get it talking to my 5 year old instrumentation - all Raymarine - wind, depth, speed, autohelm, ST60 multi displays. NMEA 0183 seems to be my choice for communications protocol given the vintage of the other instruments. I wired it all up very carefully, checked all connections - no communications. I remembered to set NMEA IN and OUT on the user setup for the ST60 its connected to, and set NMEA IN and OUT on the E7.

I'm concerned about baud rate - the minimum baud rate on the e7 is 4800 and I cannot find any reference info for baud rate on the other instruments.

Any wisdom or advice would appreciated, unless your slagging RM, personally I have found my setup to be bullet proof, just trying to get the new talking to the old.

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post #2 of 9 Old 07-08-2012
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Re: NMEA - Not More Electronics Agony!

I'm not all that up on RM tech, but the st60's certainly do Seatalk, so you just daisy chain those together and then go into a seatalk -> seatalkNG(n2k) converter dontcha?

I don't think I'd be messing with 0183 from each instrument, that will get ugly real quick.
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post #3 of 9 Old 07-08-2012
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Re: NMEA - Not More Electronics Agony!

Steve, it is possible for new equipment to be DOA.

So my first thought would be to test the new equipment, connect it to *one* "known good" NMEA talker and see if you can get it to listen, then vice versa.

Similarly, try connecting the old equipment (or at least, one piece at a time) to something simpe and dumb like an old Palm PDA, or a computer serial port, and see if the old equipment is actually putting OUT NMEA.

Sometimes the problem is simply that "RX/IN" and "TX/OUT" have been swapped, often due to bad diagrams or from too many pieces of equipment not making it clear that "IN" and "OUT" are just different ends of the same cable.

IIRC if you connect a simple DC voltmeter on a 5-12V scale to an NMEA bus, you should see a pulse every time data is sent onto the bus. No pulses? There's no data. A GPS should send a pulse once per second, with the typical GPS output strings.
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post #4 of 9 Old 07-08-2012
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Re: NMEA - Not More Electronics Agony!

I had a defective E7. Reboot the unit by holding dow the power and menu buttons. The Ray techs will push you to use Seatalk. It should not be necessary but is the best way to get them to help you.

Did you go into SETUP and turn on NMEA on the e7?????????????
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post #5 of 9 Old 07-08-2012
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Re: NMEA - Not More Electronics Agony!

Wasn't the idea behind the E7 to use Bluetooth to stream display data to your ipad or iphone?

Remember NEMA 0183 you can only have just 1 'talker'

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post #6 of 9 Old 07-09-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: NMEA - Not More Electronics Agony!

Thanks for replies.
I don't have time to mess with it. I went into the dealer today and ordered cable adapter to connect existing ST to new STNG backbone.

Hopefully that will do it. I don't relish the DOA prospect. The chart plotter is working fine otherwise. And yes I did enable NMEA 0183.

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post #7 of 9 Old 07-09-2012
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Re: NMEA - Not More Electronics Agony!

Go back to hanks, a Windex, a leadline, a compass and wood chips dropped over the side.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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post #8 of 9 Old 07-12-2012
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Re: NMEA - Not More Electronics Agony!

All NMEA '83 is 4800 baud except for the AIS instruments. Autohelm has a wonderful habit on not repeating what it on the input bus on the output bus - like you feed wind into your GPS and it just drops the data. Its a cheap way to get you to buy their seatalk to NMEA converter. Easiest way to test the equipment (presuming you have Windows XP) is to feed the output of each instrument into your com port in HyperTerminal set at 4800-N (no parity) 8 (data bits) 1 (stop bit) It you see it you are getting it! As I remember (but you can google the pin assignments for COM ports) you connect the output of your instruments to pins 2 and 6 on the Com port. I forget which is hi and which is ground but you can only wire them two ways.

Best of luck.

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post #9 of 9 Old 07-23-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: NMEA - Not More Electronics Agony!

An update for anyone interested. I installed a Seatalk ng backbone and connected the older instruments (which were already connected together via Seatalk) with a Seatalk ng converter cable. The E7 is now receiving all data perfectly and the autohelm is getting its Track instruction from the E7. Problem is solved.

It pisses me off having to throw money at the problem to make it go away. The NMEA 0183 interface should have worked.

But all's well that ends well and it wasn't that expensive - about $120 for all parts - would have been less but I bought an extra 15ft cable to move the E7 out to the helm.

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