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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles
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Thread: Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
07-11-2013 05:30 PM
marcusc130
Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles

Just remember that if you go messing with it, you'll probably void the warranty. Mine only rattles when the RPM's are in the sweet spot, close to idle. I think there is a small adjustment knob on the back of the ring, maybe you can take up some slack with that?
07-11-2013 03:49 PM
mbsl98
Re: Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kajungizmo View Post
Olson is probably correct. Less expensive wheel pilots are made with less expensive parts. Manufacturers often turn to cheaper parts to keep costs down. Quality suffers more than your checkbook. Sad to say, but you get what you pay for (which is okay, as long as you understand this).

If you've installed the unit yourself, and are confident it functions correctly (smooth operation of the wheel when AP is engaged, not binding or grinding) then the most likely answer is "normal ops".

KG
I quite agree that it is most likely a parts issue, since the noise wouldn't occur if the inside ring rolled on say rubber wheels versus hard plasitic loosely held in plastic holders. However, for my installation, I really didn't have a choice of products, other than a $6k custom install of a below deck hydraulic unit, which was never going to happen on my 25 year old 22' boat (nice as it is). I will be playing with ways to put a little pressure on the asembly to take up the play that now allows the parts to stay loose and free to rattle with the engine vibrations. I don't think it is practical to add some sort of soft coating to the interior surfaces. Fortunately this is just a problem under power and not using AP, but i do motor several miles on each outing.
07-10-2013 09:45 PM
Kajungizmo
Re: Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles

Quote:
Originally Posted by olson34 View Post
No way to prove it but I'm leaning toward Raymarine having made some poorly-engineered or cost-cutting changes when they built their own brand of motor drive to replace the venerable AutoHelm drive that was part of the AP wheel system they bought from AutoHelm...
Olson is probably correct. Less expensive wheel pilots are made with less expensive parts. Manufacturers often turn to cheaper parts to keep costs down. Quality suffers more than your checkbook. Sad to say, but you get what you pay for (which is okay, as long as you understand this).

If you've installed the unit yourself, and are confident it functions correctly (smooth operation of the wheel when AP is engaged, not binding or grinding) then the most likely answer is "normal ops".

KG
07-10-2013 11:32 AM
mbsl98
Re: Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles

Quote:
Originally Posted by dvuyxx View Post
I'm about to install one ... so the rattling is between the internal ring and the bearings??
I'm still doing the final sorting of my installation, but as far as I can deduce, the noise is from the bearings onto either their loose plastic holders or the ring that they ride on. When not engaged, it looks as if the bearing pressure on the plastic ring is released a bit, and that allows the bearings to be just loosely held in position ready to rattle against anything they can touch. First i thought rattle was coming from the two grey cover rings (front and back of wheel unit) since the back sets inside the front with very little clearance. However, it looks to me as if those two rings never actually contact each other so the noises are all from the nternal elements that you can't actually see when it is all assembled. I have been thinking about somethyng like automotive disk brake pad grease - something that will not run under any circumstances. I know that RayMarine says no lubes of any mind, and that makes sense when you see that the whole affair is run with a friction belt that will lose its grip if it gets greasy under it. Another alternative may be to try to take up a little tension on the belt when it is released - ie: not allow it to fully release so that it holds a bit more presure on the bearings. However, that will add drag to steering, posibly other issues. At first I just inserted a couple of shims between the back and front grey rings, but that was before I had completed the install of the locating pin and the whole assembly could rotate with wheel movement. Once the pin was installed, the back and front rings need to be able to rotate separately when it is disengaged, so shims can't be used there. I just signed up on the RayMarine tech site, and will report back if they can add any helpful hints.
07-08-2013 07:57 PM
olson34
Re: Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles

No way to prove it but I'm leaning toward Raymarine having made some poorly-engineered or cost-cutting changes when they built their own brand of motor drive to replace the venerable AutoHelm drive that was part of the AP wheel system they bought from AutoHelm.
I had an AH 4000s wheel drive that was quiet, except for the soft whirring of the motor, for over 15 years. Due to "old age"... I stupidly replaced the whole setup with a new A-5 system a year ago.. So far the computer unit and display have been back to Raymarine for repair and it works better now, but still stops and drops our of AP function once in a while, or refuses to go to AP function until you tap the button several times.

Our wheel drive unit makes a loud screeching noise (like plastic rubbing on plastic) most of the time it operates. It does not slip, but you can hear it clearly over the sound of the diesel!
And this is After it also was checked over, under warranty, by Raymarine.

I really wish that there was some competition for this product, but other than the "Old School" CPT unit, there isn't. Despite the excellent reputation of CPT, we wanted an AP that would network.

Best of luck with yours, and with Raymarine.
07-08-2013 07:32 PM
dvuyxx
Re: Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles

I'm about to install one ... so the rattling is between the internal ring and the bearings??
07-02-2013 06:16 PM
marcusc130
Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles

I have the same issue, and the only fix that I've figured out is to use the motor less....
07-02-2013 04:56 PM
mbsl98
Raymarine SPX-5 Wheel Pilot rattles

I am installing an SPX-5 Wheel Pilot on my Marshall 22. The SPX has a plastic assembly that installs on the wheel and contains an internal ring that rolls on bearings held loosely in holders. When under diesel power, and not using the autopilot, there is quite a bit of vibration/rattle noise generated from the plastic assembly, mostly due to the fact that all tension is off on the internal components unless you are using the autopilot to steer. There are several warnings not to use grease or lubes on the internal parts, since the whole thing depends on a friction belt to move the wheel and grease under that belt would defeat the motor's grip on wheel. Anyone have any experience / fixes for this? Not the worst noise, but annoying. Part of the problem may be the small size of the boat, so the Yanmar 3GMD vibrations are not as well damped as on a larger vessel? The motor mounts, etc are all in good shape (near new) and my focus is solely on the autopilot parts, not the drivetrain.

Thanks

 
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