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Old 03-20-2006, 05:14 AM   #1
Tartan Debra
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Default Autohelm 5000 fine tuning

I recently purchased a Tartan 37 that is equipped with a Autohelm 5000. On my maiden voyage I could get the Autohelm to work, but not work well. In a sea it oversteered quite a bit, at times 20 degrees on either side of the course. Does anyone have experience "dialing in" an Autohelm 5000.

There seems to be 3 controls (Sea, Rudder & Gain) with 8 different settings per control, that's a lot of varations.

How did it work for you?

Thank you
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Old 03-20-2006, 10:10 PM   #2
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You have to fiddle with the settings - gain, for example, will vary according to sea conditions - it might be set too low, and that's ther eason for the 20* swerving.

Same with rudder. Do you have a manual? Start by setting it up in calm conditions, and note what you've done. Then at various points of sail.

Another consideration. Sail trim is important - the easier it is for you to steer by hand, the easier the autopilot will find it to steer.

Fair winds,

Jeanne
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Old 03-21-2006, 12:33 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Converted Post'
Originally posted by Tartan Debra

I recently purchased a Tartan 37 that is equipped with a Autohelm 5000. On my maiden voyage I could get the Autohelm to work, but not work well. In a sea it oversteered quite a bit, at times 20 degrees on either side of the course. Does anyone have experience "dialing in" an Autohelm 5000.

There seems to be 3 controls (Sea, Rudder & Gain) with 8 different settings per control, that's a lot of varations.

How did it work for you?

Thank you
It also helps to "swing" the electronic compass: This involves flat water and 2 x very slow 360 degree turns in the "cal" mode. If this is done sucessfully, the next page will show you the deviation, which should be no more than 15 degrees. Then get into the "cal" page for latitude and check which it is set up for. I find that, for example, on boats set up in South Africa and delivered to the Caribbean, that it helps enormously!

You should have onboard the Raytheon manual which is pretty "user friendly". Take the time to read and play with the buttons - you aint gonna break anything!! And it will help you to do simple re-sets and tell you a lot about what the instrument can do for you. If yours is lost, any Raytheon dealer should be able to get you one or maybe even you can print it off from their web-site?

best of luck, Tony
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Old 03-21-2006, 06:36 AM   #4
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Go to http://www.raymarine.com/raymarine/Default...e=657&Section=3 to download the manual for your autopilot.

The advice about trimming everything before engaging the pilot is VERY important.

Good luck,

Terry
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Old 03-21-2006, 09:26 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Converted Post'
Originally posted by YachtVALHALLA

Go to http://www.raymarine.com/raymarine/Default...e=657&Section=3 to download the manual for your autopilot.

The advice about trimming everything before engaging the pilot is VERY important.

Good luck,

Terry
Absolutely agree, Terry, you can wear the poor little thing out if you make it work too hard! Another thing I find useful is the rudder angle indicator to see how much weather helm one is carrying. (although of course, one should really be doing this in manual by feel!)
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Old 03-22-2006, 09:10 AM   #6
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Thanks for all the good advice. I did trim the boat so she was sailing with very little helm. I have to say that I'm pleased with how easy the Tartan 37 steers. Steering by hand is easy under all the conditions I've encounterd so far. And I have the manual and I have read it. It's not really clear about the adjustments, but I'll fool with them some more.

Tony, I'm not sure what you mean about the 'cal' page. This is a Autohelm 5000 and does not have any electronic readouts.

I would still like to hear from any one who has experience with this particular model. And any other autopilot experience in general. I may replace this system in the near future.

Thanks again
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Old 03-22-2006, 05:26 PM   #7
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I Have just completed first stage of my circum navigation fron Norway to Malaysia in a Jeanneau SO37. 20.000 miles and I estimate 19.500 was helmed by my Raymarine st6000 with a 150G computer! Upwind I normally let it run in Wind-vane modus, down wind in compass. Gain and rudder setting normally in 1 or 2! Power consumption was 1/3 of what my fridge took!
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Old 03-22-2006, 08:29 PM   #8
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Ah, sorry, its when you go into "Calibation", you have to press a couple of buttons together (cant remember off hand which ones) and the screen comes up as "cal" Tony
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Old 03-28-2006, 06:16 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the good tips. I will "fiddle" with the controls.

It would be really nice to hear from someone who either owns or has sailed with an Autohelm 5000. If you know of anyone who has sailed with one please pass this request for fine tuning tips along.

Thanks again.
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Old 04-29-2010, 10:08 AM   #10
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Raymarine Manuals ➥ http://www.raymarine.com/Default.asp...ion=3&page=166

Retired Autohelm Manuals ➥ http://www.raymarine.com/Default.asp...ion=3&page=657

Autohelm 5000 ➥ http://www.raymarine.com/SubmittedFi...5000Analog.pdf

Autohelm ST5000 ➥ http://www.raymarine.com/SubmittedFi...0Hydraulic.pdf

Hope this helps,

Gord May
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Old 04-29-2010, 10:26 AM   #11
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Very useful info - thanks Gord.
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Old 04-29-2010, 11:08 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay' date='29 April 2010 - 05:08 PM View Post
Hi Gord, welcome to Cruiser Log!

Richard
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Old 04-30-2010, 06:13 PM   #13
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I have an Autohelm 5000 on my 32' Kettenburg Sloop which I sail mostly by myself. I installed it myself with little trouble. However I could never get it to steer in a straight or even close to straight line, never as good as the Autohelm 2000 that I had replaced, after about ten years of good service. I fussed with the 5000 for several seasons always blaming myself and my installation. Then giving up and sailing on, by hand. I would go through the water like a snake, either sailing or motoring. Back and forth sometimes as much as 15 Degrees off center each way. Finally I got a rep on board and we ran through the installation again. He discovered that the compass was faulty. It was sticking and had to be replaced. Of course the warranty had run out. My bad for having put up with it for so long.

It now works great, I keep the rudder gain at a 2 and no mas trouble. Whew, I can even go below to brew a cup of tea. Sunseeker
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