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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just got gifted a used Simrad TP30 that looks brand new. Never installed with manuals, cables, accessories and a wired remote. Wondering what the differences between this unit and the current TP32 units. Looking at the manuals, the TP32 can be connected via SimNet as well as NMEA 0183, the TP30 is NMEA 0183 only.
 

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I have both. In fact, I have two TP32 tillerpilots and one TP30. I repaired the TP30 with a drive screw meant for use in a TP32 and I saw nothing different in the inside mechanical arrangements. As you said, the TP30 is NMEA 0183 only while the TP32 is both NMEA 0183 and 2000. Both will go into NAV mode with a chartplotter. The TP32 has a different plug with more pins. If you need to use an external compass, the TP30 works with only one, an ATC600, while the TP32 will work with any NMEA 2000 compass. The software in the TP32 is a little different and can be easily updated over the NMEA 2000 network (which I have done). The TP32 can display much of its internal data (internal setpoints, rudder angle, mode, etc.) over the NMEA network to a Simrad display head. If you need a remote control for the tillerpilot, the two models use different remotes. I think the updated software in my TP32 is a little better than the software in my TP30 meaning that the TP32 does a little better job of controlling the boat's heading, but I have no measured data, and it could just be my wishful thinking.

Bill
 

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Awesome!! Thanks for the input. Im connecting it to my Raymarine wireless (TackTick) system thats NMEA 0183 only so the TP32 doesnt have too much that I need.
 

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I have both. In fact, I have two TP32 tillerpilots and one TP30. I repaired the TP30 with a drive screw meant for use in a TP32 and I saw nothing different in the inside mechanical arrangements. As you said, the TP30 is NMEA 0183 only while the TP32 is both NMEA 0183 and 2000. Both will go into NAV mode with a chartplotter. The TP32 has a different plug with more pins. If you need to use an external compass, the TP30 works with only one, an ATC600, while the TP32 will work with any NMEA 2000 compass. The software in the TP32 is a little different and can be easily updated over the NMEA 2000 network (which I have done). The TP32 can display much of its internal data (internal setpoints, rudder angle, mode, etc.) over the NMEA network to a Simrad display head. If you need a remote control for the tillerpilot, the two models use different remotes. I think the updated software in my TP32 is a little better than the software in my TP30 meaning that the TP32 does a little better job of controlling the boat's heading, but I have no measured data, and it could just be my wishful thinking.

Bill
Hey Bill, you probably can help me with some information. I have a TP 32, but on a steel boat. So the autopilot is not working well in some headings. I assume that happens because of the influence of the steel on the internal compass. So I am looking for a external compass, but I need to know wich one is compatible with TP 32? Will I need a display or can I just plug the external compass using NMEA 2000? Thanks
 

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For the last few years my Simrad TP32 tillerpilot in use (I have two) gets its heading information from a Simrad GS25 GPS/Mag Compass/Heeling Angle sensor mounted on my stern rail. Although I have two Simrad IS40 and one IS42 displays on the system, they are not necessary for the tillerpilot to work; they display some data and do some of the thing things that the tillerpilot buttons also do. I just plugged everything together and the tillerpilot found the GS25 on the network. When the tillerpilot is steering the boat, moving my pocket knife around the tillerpilot does nothing; moving it around the GS25 drives the tillerpilot crazy.

Now for the bad news. This spring on the Chesapeake Bay we had four vessels tell us that our AIS HDG and COG were wildly different --- like we were moving south while heading north or something equally silly. Lots of snooping later, we have found that when the tillerpilot is in AUTO or NAV, the NAIS transmitts a heading of 359 or 000 but that the correct heading from the GS25 shows up on all my boat's displays. With the tillerpilot in STBY or unplugged, the AIS transmits the correct heading. I have been working with Simrad since June to get to the bottom of this puzzle with little apparent progress. Their current thinking is that the heading repetition rate from the GS25 is too slow somehow causing the problem. If so, it should be fixed by replacing the GS25 with a Precision 7 or Precision 9 compass, or so I have been told.

So, the short story is that I think the GS25 would work fine with a TP32, but but I am not sure that it is the best choice. I'd call Simrad for their advice.
 
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