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Freedom isn't free
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've now had 4 tiller pilots across 3 boats, and thought I had a pretty good idea what makes them tick. I was worried with THIS boat that the location of my speakers (marine, supposedly magnetically shielded) less than 3 feet from my tiller pilot were going to interfere with the TP.

NOPE... HOWEVER, my present tiller pilot, a Simrad TP22 (admittedly oversized for my 26 footer), was steering off course occasionally, severely, for no apparent reason.

I calibrated the TP just last night (a simple process by the way).. basically HIT port/starboard together and hold, then press TACK... the unit then flashes a couple times.. then you must do a slow consistent turn to starboard... it'll flash starboard or port if you go to fast or to slow... do this at about 3-4 knots. OK once you turn THROUGH 360 degrees, shortly thereafter for me about 1.25 turns, it either does a short beep (successful) or a long beep (failed)...

Ok after I did this, the tiller pilot was SPOT on, held a course like mad... for like 2 hours, then it went "nuts," again. I couldn't figure it out UNTIL!!!!

I realized, that my cellular phone is usually kept below, or in my cup holders (forward about 3 feet of the TP)... Anyway for whatever reason I had slipped the cellphone into my pocket. I was on a starboard tack, and therefore sitting NEXT to the TP...

YEP, confirmed... I removed the phone, moved it forward, TP went back to proper course... picked the phone up moved it NEAR the TP, boat veered... BAZINGA!!! My cellphone is the culprit.

Just a PSA here... before you start blaming your speakers, or rigging, or the like, look at whether you have your pocketed smartphone on hand.

Oh I'll note that my prior portable VHF while transmitting used to interfere with the TP, when used next to the TP of course.
 

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Good information. Thanks. I passed this along to a friend that is having very similar issues with his TP32.
 
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