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post #1 of 41 Old 07-30-2015 Thread Starter
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tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

Been researching simrad tp20 or 32 and Raymarine st2000+ after many hours Im still quite unsure which is most likely to perform well let alone at all.
If You Have used a tiller pilot please share your experience..
As background my 25' boat displaces 6000lbs with basic gear and water. It has a balanced spade rudder which can be comfortably handled with a few fingers to weather.
Are these things really such a crap shoot or does the i ternet favor the horror stories?
Your experience appreciated



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Re: tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

Ray Marine bought out Autohelm. When I bought an Autohelm in the early 90s, I plugged it in and it worked, flawlessly till this spring.
So I replaced it with a Ramarine st1000. It wandered far more than the autohelm. The programing required was complex and the instruction manual for programing it was largely incomprehensible. There would be one line, then `Go to page 61, where there would be one more line, then `Go to page 51, etc etc.
The wandering is not something I couldnt live with but far more than`it should.
It doesn`t lock in, as I am told the tillermaster does, which makes the tiller master useless on a steel boat.
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Re: tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

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Originally Posted by Brent Swain View Post
Ray Marine bought out Autohelm. When I bought an Autohelm in the early 90s, I plugged it in and it worked, flawlessly till this spring.
So I replaced it with a Ramarine st1000. It wandered far more than the autohelm. The programing required was complex and the instruction manual for programing it was largely incomprehensible. There would be one line, then `Go to page 61, where there would be one more line, then `Go to page 51, etc etc.
The wandering is not something I couldnt live with but far more than`it should.
It doesn`t lock in, as I am told the tillermaster does, which makes the tiller master useless on a steel boat.
Hi Brent. I downloaded the Raymarine manual to get some sense of what they have in adjustments. Should keep keep a person busy for several weekends experimenting...
Thanks for your input

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Re: tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

The Simrad tiller pilot was discussed quite a bit in a thread about a year ago. I sure don't remember the title. But a guy Christian.Hess had many experiences to discuss, and most was good. On the other hand, he said that he used one a long time ago. So, current models may be different. You might try a search to see what you turn up.
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Re: tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

I had a Navico , never did work and then they got bought by Simrad and they would not work on it . Before that I a Autohelm that worked perfect , but we sold that boat . Our present boat is a bit hefty for 28' LOD ,we use the Raymarine st2000 . We don't ask too much from it and it works fine . For your boat I think the st 1000 would be OK , unless you really push it .
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Re: tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

I had a ST1000+ on my Capri 25, 3500lbs... spade rudder... on my Boat last year (used it for 2 seasons)...

I have a Simrad TP22 on my S2 7.9 4700lbs, transom mount rudder on my boat now, just this season.

Both are overkill for the size boat I had. 6000lbs I'd opt for the 2000+ from Raymarine, but I feel the TP22 form Simrad would be fine (doesn't break a sweat on my boat)... so basically it sounds like you have the right size... I'd rather the TP be slightly overkill than right at its limit anyway... 6000lbs should be no problem if it's a light tiller, on the ST2000+ and the TP22.

The S2 is a much heavier tiller than the Capri, its like a barn door hung off the transom, which is why I opted for bigger.

I feel if you aren't willing to do the basic calibration for tiller pilot, you are wasting your time. Also, I've personally had to fix the fluxgate compass on my ST1000+, its cool because it's easy to find Raymarine parts (on Ebay).. by contrast when I broke my TP22 (yep, less than 1 season, I broke my TP22, by me falling on it), I couldn't find basic parts on Ebay. That's bothersome.

OK, so on my ST1000+ I broke the fluxgate compass, by essentially setting the unit down to hard over and over again... I used to keep it on my cockpit seat, and would disconnect and let it swing aft against the combing. This 90 degree turn was usually when I had a handful, like when the boat just got a +10knt gust, and the boat was heeling like mad.. so you can bet the TP swung with a bang a few times... SO I couldnt' really blame Raymarine for it. The part that broke was a $1 plastic piece that creates the gimbal for the fluxgate compass... can you buy JUST that.. NO, so $95 for the fluxgate and gimbal (ugh). If I had a 3D scanner I'd have printed the damned part! Some more about the ST1000+, is that it'll do seatalk, and integrate will all raymarine stuff via seatalk (no question the 2000+ will as well). Calibration takes a couple minutes (I don't recall the procedure, which means it must not have been hard to do). I didn't have integrated electronics with raymarine for that boat, but I have no doubt it'd talk to raymarine stuff fine. That means you'll want a seatalk to NMEA 2000 converter if you have mixed brand electronics.

Ok, so my TP 22... the simrad TP10 is equivalent to the ST1000+ (in size, but it doesn't do simnet, or NMEA), but the TP22 is the same as the ST2000+ in size, and does both. I went UP in size because A) I knew I had a heavier boat, B) I knew I was going to have simrad instruments, and C) because I knew the barndoor rudder on the S2 would benefit from the stronger throw. So far the TP22 has never strained. The interface for the TP22, has 3 connections... POWER (for dedicated power), Simnet (which it does NOT derive power from), and NMEA 0183. The reason no NMEA 2000, is becuase SIMNET is basically already NMEA 2000 (they made a cable adapter, but you can splice a NMEA 2000 end right on the SIMNET cable, at least I can't see any reason why you can't, others can confirm this)... OK I like how simplistic simnet is, so I plugged it in to my IS20 Combi WIND, and was able to get it to talk to the TP22, without really having to configure a thing (trick is to have them all connected first before you first power on, otherwise you have to ADD the device in, not a huge procedure, but an extra step). The next thing was calibrate the TP22, its basically press starboard/port, and then tap TACK... do this while motoring in a large clockwise circle... you should be doing like 3-5 knots... it'll tell you if you are turning too slow, or fast by blinking green or red... Anyway once you make slightly MORE than a 360 degree turn... it'll usually be calibrated (positive beeps, otherwise one long beep, meaning try again). I only had it fail once and it was when I was waked by a motorboat. while doing it. After that it has done quite well. I've had to TP22s in 4 months (long story), so I've had to recalibrate it... which is why I had to recalibrate it.

OK... HOW do the 2 compare? I'd say pretty evenly honestly. I personally like the TP22 better slightly, but that may be more about the power it has (again I'm comparing 2 different sizes so that's not likely fair). The interfaces are drop dead simple on both (as it should be)... The steer to wind on the TP22 is pretty good (can't say for the ST1000+ as I didn't have those functions in instruments), but almost useless on our mountain lake, as wind shifts send it reeling pretty quickly. NOt because it doesn't do it, it does, but it sets off alarms on my IS20... which I've not turned off yet. But it works, and tracks like mad even with 90 degree shifts, but if you get a 90 degree shift it's really a hole, and you'd rather it blindly steer through it, cause it's coming back anyway.

I've felt comfortable slapping the TP22 on even while I'm heeling at 30 degrees right on the edge of 30 degrees off wind, so that I can go below and use the head. I've only once had it (while steering a course not steering to wind) have me round up... but the reason was winds shifted 15 degrees as a header, throwing the bow over.

Obviously I am not much help when it comes to sea state, as I'm not in open water. I've been waked more than my share of times, both under sail with TP in control, or more commonly with me buttoning up the boat while the boat was motoring back to the marina. It handles it quite well, and reacts quite quickly. I wouldn't want to have a boat next to me (less than 50 feet) while it happens, as the boat might correct back and forth some... yes I've had the TP on while motoring less than 50 feet next to another boat (I was taking pictures - again another long story).

I'm going to dig and see if I can find a few videos with the (each) of the TPs under control. I don't think I have many with decent levels of wind, because I usually like driving in those conditions, but I'll see. I am sure I have several with 8-12knot winds. I doubt I have any with white caps. I'll update THIS post if I can get them up on u-tube.

If you have specific questions I'll try to answer what I can. Again, I can't vouch for how they'd do in following seas (I'm on a puddle)... but I CAN tell you that they correct the most downwind. It takes them a while to adjust to the state while downwind. The TP22 seems to correct instantly downwind when you turn it on.. adjusting 5 degrees or so immediately the wrong way. This is unnerving under spinnaker, because if it's blowing hard enough, its a self-perpetuating rounding if you aren't careful. Best to be ready to trim spinnaker when you first turn it on... but it recovers quickly and after that its fine.

This is the TP22 in light air (again sorry no heavier air)...
https://youtu.be/Evjdtpku_CY

I'll endeavor to get a short video with my new phone (better HD video) hopefully this weekend upwind.

This is the ST1000+ in slightly heavier air than above, on a close reach (better idea how it handles).
https://youtu.be/tkp3Vr2rOjc

Others here could tell you more, but as I understand it, you can add a "rate compass" and highly improve the speed at which the TP reacts.

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Last edited by SHNOOL; 07-30-2015 at 10:00 PM. Reason: To add video links.
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Re: tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

Quote:
Originally Posted by SHNOOL View Post
I had a ST1000+ on my Capri 25, 3500lbs... spade rudder... on my Boat last year (used it for 2 seasons)...

I have a Simrad TP22 on my S2 7.9 4700lbs, transom mount rudder on my boat now, just this season.

Both are overkill for the size boat I had. 6000lbs I'd opt for the 2000+ from Raymarine, but I feel the TP22 form Simrad would be fine (doesn't break a sweat on my boat)... so basically it sounds like you have the right size... I'd rather the TP be slightly overkill than right at its limit anyway... 6000lbs should be no problem if it's a light tiller, on the ST2000+ and the TP22.

The S2 is a much heavier tiller than the Capri, its like a barn door hung off the transom, which is why I opted for bigger.

I feel if you aren't willing to do the basic calibration for tiller pilot, you are wasting your time. Also, I've personally had to fix the fluxgate compass on my ST1000+, its cool because it's easy to find Raymarine parts (on Ebay).. by contrast when I broke my TP22 (yep, less than 1 season, I broke my TP22, by me falling on it), I couldn't find basic parts on Ebay. That's bothersome.

OK, so on my ST1000+ I broke the fluxgate compass, by essentially setting the unit down to hard over and over again... I used to keep it on my cockpit seat, and would disconnect and let it swing aft against the combing. This 90 degree turn was usually when I had a handful, like when the boat just got a +10knt gust, and the boat was heeling like mad.. so you can bet the TP swung with a bang a few times... SO I couldnt' really blame Raymarine for it. The part that broke was a $1 plastic piece that creates the gimbal for the fluxgate compass... can you buy JUST that.. NO, so $95 for the fluxgate and gimbal (ugh). If I had a 3D scanner I'd have printed the damned part! Some more about the ST1000+, is that it'll do seatalk, and integrate will all raymarine stuff via seatalk (no question the 2000+ will as well). Calibration takes a couple minutes (I don't recall the procedure, which means it must not have been hard to do). I didn't have integrated electronics with raymarine for that boat, but I have no doubt it'd talk to raymarine stuff fine. That means you'll want a seatalk to NMEA 2000 converter if you have mixed brand electronics.

Ok, so my TP 22... the simrad TP10 is equivalent to the ST1000+ (in size, but it doesn't do simnet, or NMEA), but the TP22 is the same as the ST2000+ in size, and does both. I went UP in size because A) I knew I had a heavier boat, B) I knew I was going to have simrad instruments, and C) because I knew the barndoor rudder on the S2 would benefit from the stronger throw. So far the TP22 has never strained. The interface for the TP22, has 3 connections... POWER (for dedicated power), Simnet (which it does NOT derive power from), and NMEA 0183. The reason no NMEA 2000, is becuase SIMNET is basically already NMEA 2000 (they made a cable adapter, but you can splice a NMEA 2000 end right on the SIMNET cable, at least I can't see any reason why you can't, others can confirm this)... OK I like how simplistic simnet is, so I plugged it in to my IS20 Combi WIND, and was able to get it to talk to the TP22, without really having to configure a thing (trick is to have them all connected first before you first power on, otherwise you have to ADD the device in, not a huge procedure, but an extra step). The next thing was calibrate the TP22, its basically press starboard/port, and then tap TACK... do this while motoring in a large clockwise circle... you should be doing like 3-5 knots... it'll tell you if you are turning too slow, or fast by blinking green or red... Anyway once you make slightly MORE than a 360 degree turn... it'll usually be calibrated (positive beeps, otherwise one long beep, meaning try again). I only had it fail once and it was when I was waked by a motorboat. while doing it. After that it has done quite well. I've had to TP22s in 4 months (long story), so I've had to recalibrate it... which is why I had to recalibrate it.

OK... HOW do the 2 compare? I'd say pretty evenly honestly. I personally like the TP22 better slightly, but that may be more about the power it has (again I'm comparing 2 different sizes so that's not likely fair). The interfaces are drop dead simple on both (as it should be)... The steer to wind on the TP22 is pretty good (can't say for the ST1000+ as I didn't have those functions in instruments), but almost useless on our mountain lake, as wind shifts send it reeling pretty quickly. NOt because it doesn't do it, it does, but it sets off alarms on my IS20... which I've not turned off yet. But it works, and tracks like mad even with 90 degree shifts, but if you get a 90 degree shift it's really a hole, and you'd rather it blindly steer through it, cause it's coming back anyway.

I've felt comfortable slapping the TP22 on even while I'm heeling at 30 degrees right on the edge of 30 degrees off wind, so that I can go below and use the head. I've only once had it (while steering a course not steering to wind) have me round up... but the reason was winds shifted 15 degrees as a header, throwing the bow over.

Obviously I am not much help when it comes to sea state, as I'm not in open water. I've been waked more than my share of times, both under sail with TP in control, or more commonly with me buttoning up the boat while the boat was motoring back to the marina. It handles it quite well, and reacts quite quickly. I wouldn't want to have a boat next to me (less than 50 feet) while it happens, as the boat might correct back and forth some... yes I've had the TP on while motoring less than 50 feet next to another boat (I was taking pictures - again another long story).

I'm going to dig and see if I can find a few videos with the (each) of the TPs under control. I don't think I have many with decent levels of wind, because I usually like driving in those conditions, but I'll see. I am sure I have several with 8-12knot winds. I doubt I have any with white caps. I'll update THIS post if I can get them up on u-tube.

If you have specific questions I'll try to answer what I can. Again, I can't vouch for how they'd do in following seas (I'm on a puddle)... but I CAN tell you that they correct the most downwind. It takes them a while to adjust to the state while downwind. The TP22 seems to correct instantly downwind when you turn it on.. adjusting 5 degrees or so immediately the wrong way. This is unnerving under spinnaker, because if it's blowing hard enough, its a self-perpetuating rounding if you aren't careful. Best to be ready to trim spinnaker when you first turn it on... but it recovers quickly and after that its fine.

This is the TP22 in light air (again sorry no heavier air)...
https://youtu.be/Evjdtpku_CY

I'll endeavor to get a short video with my new phone (better HD video) hopefully this weekend upwind.

This is the ST1000+ in slightly heavier air than above, on a close reach (better idea how it handles).
https://youtu.be/tkp3Vr2rOjc

Others here could tell you more, but as I understand it, you can add a "rate compass" and highly improve the speed at which the TP reacts.
Great Shnool!
Thanks for the nitty gritty that helps alot. Do you like having the read out screen on the st1000 or is it not really missed on the tp22?thanks again for the good detail on handling

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Re: tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

Quote:
Originally Posted by Markwesti View Post
I had a Navico , never did work and then they got bought by Simrad and they would not work on it . Before that I a Autohelm that worked perfect , but we sold that boat . Our present boat is a bit hefty for 28' LOD ,we use the Raymarine st2000 . We don't ask too much from it and it works fine . For your boat I think the st 1000 would be OK , unless you really push it .
Hi Mark
Yeah i had toyed with trusting the st1000+ capacity but after reading some other experiences thought it better to err up instead of down ...do you have a cover for yours?

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Re: tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

I bought a Simrad TP 10 in 2008. I used it in about 5000 miles of cruising in a Bristol 24 sloop, and then a Cheoy Lee 31 ketch, over the next 4 years. I always kept a waterproof cover on it, and it always worked great as long as I kept the boats reasonably balanced. It was working fine when I sold the boat.

Even on the 12,000 lb Cheoy Lee, it had enough power to quickly keep the boat on course. I prefer simple devices, and don't see the need for a tiller pilot with more features for my use.
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post #10 of 41 Old 07-31-2015
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Re: tiller pilots: simrad or raymarine????

Hi Oysterman , we do not have a cover for our AP . But that's not a bad idea . Also when I say we don't ask to much from it I mean we really only use it for motor sailing or light sailing beer break . When I single hand I use it to head up so I can hoist sails . I have never tried to tack with it ,I don't think it has enough travel but now you have me thinking , maybe I will try that .
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