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Advices on connections

 
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francesco72
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Joined: Mar 27, 2013
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 3:25 pm    Post subject: Advices on connections Reply with quote

Dear Frank,

first of all I would like to thank you for all your work and for sharing. If I understand well, I can freely use your PCB layout, schematics and hex file to build my NMEA bridge myself ... is it correct? If so it's great news for me Razz

Since it's my first post I would like to present myself: my name is Francesco and I live in Italy. I'm 40 years old and I'm quite new to sailing. From one year I have the opportunity of sailing a Dufour 40 sailboat of which I'm very proud of. Great boat. I made a lot of work on it and now it's time to understand (and possibly use) all the instruments I have on board. The instruments and the connections between them were done by the previous owner of the boat.

Near the chart table I have:

FURUNO GP 32 GPS
FURUNO 1722 RADAR/LCD CHARTPLOTTER
FURUNO NX300 NAVTEX

RAYMARINE 150 Autopilot Course Computer
Raymarine ST60 Graphic Display

Outside I have

2xRaymarine ST60 Wind
2xRaymarine ST60 Tridata
Raymarine ST6001+ Autopilot controller

FURUNO GD1700 Display (connected with the 1722 using Navnet)

Cables were a little "compressed" but the first thing I did was a schema of the connections:



(There is a mistake: on the GP32 yellow and green wires are not an NMEA IN)

Those are my first approach to the instrumentation from scratch: I have just learned to distinguish between RS232/422 and the various protocols ... so I'm a little bit confused.

I tried to do a GOTO cursor on the GP32 and, after a while, on the Autopilot controller appeared the text "Next WPT?" and a heading to go to the next waypont that was the same I read on the GP32. So I had the confirmation that autopilot and GP32 talk together! Great news!

The first think I notice is that the only way to insert waypoints and routes, actually, is using the Furuno GP32 that's the only one connected to the Autopilot. I think it should be a good thing to mix NMEA data from GPS and Seatalk data from Raymarine instruments with your Seatalk NMEA bridge, but, exactly how should I connect the GPS, the Chartplotter, the Autopilot and a P.C.? I have two types of concern for doing this:

1) Hardware: on the Furuno forum they told me that "The GP32 NMEA output is White (+) and BLUE (-) for RS422 NMEA and/or Yellow (+) and Blue (-) for RS232 NMEA. RS232 can drive one RS232 listener. The RS422 output can drive up to three RS422 listeners depending on what they are. Radios are normally counted as two listeners because of the current they pull. Although you got it working, you will want to make sure you are not mixing NMEA types because it can damage your unit(s)."

2) Software: I do not want the Autopilot or other instruments receive redundant positioning data (Out from the GPS, in the Chartplotter and then out again to the autopilot ... )

I also read on one of your posts that the Seatalk NMEA bridge is capable of converting SOG with STW for the wind instrument! That's great!

Another thing I like is to use my iPad with Navionics software. Actually I use it with an external WiFi GPS completely disconnected from the instruments on board (Dual XGPS150 Universal Bluetooth GPS). It would be great (even if I know that I need to use a software that's able to read NMEA over TCP/UDP like iNavX) if I can connect the iPad to the NMEA flow that comes out from the Seatalk NMEA bridge. Do you think it would be possible to connect the RS232 NMEA output of your Seatalk NMEA bridge to the RS232 input of a RS232 to WiFi module?

Can you please help me?

Thank you
Francesco

P.S.
My job is to make Printed Circuit boards in Italy. To thank you for your work I would like to make samples PCB (for free) for your projects if you do not have already a "for free" pcb supplier Smile We make 1 to 6 layers very good quality PCB. Let me know.
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FWallenwein
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Joined: Mar 26, 2006
Posts: 419
Location: Mannheim / Germany

PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 7:25 pm    Post subject: Re: Advices on connections Reply with quote

Hi francesco72,
francesco72 wrote:
If I understand well, I can freely use your PCB layout, schematics and hex file to build my NMEA bridge myself ... is it correct? If so it's great news for me Razz


Absolutely correct.
I'd prefere though if you do not sell the boards, Wink
If you use the software, or if you make your own software based on mine - You will have to make your sources available for anyone for free as well. But that's it. Otherwise, go ahead and build you own bridge.
No Problem.
In fact - that's what I want. I want people to make the software or even the hardware better and to make it available to other users.
It would help us all.



francesco72 wrote:

Since it's my first post I would like to present myself: my name is Francesco and I live in Italy. I'm 40 years old and I'm quite new to sailing. From one year I have the opportunity of sailing a Dufour 40 sailboat of which I'm very proud of. Great boat. I made a lot of work on it and now it's time to understand (and possibly use) all the instruments I have on board. The instruments and the connections between them were done by the previous owner of the boat.


That's about the same way I started. Got a boat, got some instruments on it, tried to understand and added what I needed.


francesco72 wrote:


1) Hardware: on the Furuno forum they told me that "The GP32 NMEA output is White (+) and BLUE (-) for RS422 NMEA and/or Yellow (+) and Blue (-) for RS232 NMEA. RS232 can drive one RS232 listener. The RS422 output can drive up to three RS422 listeners depending on what they are. Radios are normally counted as two listeners because of the current they pull. Although you got it working, you will want to make sure you are not mixing NMEA types because it can damage your unit(s)."


I don't know the colors Furuno is using. But I'm sure, you'll find that in the manual.

Regarding RS232/422.
Well, well, well ....
Yes - RS232 and RS422 is different.
RS422 has a differntial signal of 5 Volt.
RS232 has a single ended signal of up to 15 Volt.
422/232 is not the same, and whenever you can - don't mix it.

On the other side - every RS232 receiver I've seen so far does "understand" RS422 input. ( NMEA-IN+ and GND )
It's not within the official specs - but it works.
Again : Avoid it if you can. But many people just do it and it works.


francesco72 wrote:

2) Software: I do not want the Autopilot or other instruments receive redundant positioning data (Out from the GPS, in the Chartplotter and then out again to the autopilot ... )


To be honest - I'll have to think about it.
Maybe there is someone her, who knows more about Furuno devices.
My first thought :
GPS --> Charplotter --> Autopilot : No Problem.
But than again. I just don't know it the Furuno chartplotter has it's own GPS. That could cause "receive redundant". But I don't know it.



francesco72 wrote:

I also read on one of your posts that the Seatalk NMEA bridge is capable of converting SOG with STW for the wind instrument! That's great!


Correct.
The ST60 Wind want's to have Speed Through Water data in order to be able to show "True Wind Speed" and "True wind heading".
Now - if you don't have a log, and only have a GPS, than you can use this special function to feed the ST60 wind with "STW" - which is actually SOG from GPS.
But you wrote you have a ST60 Tridata. Does it not have a log attached to it ?


francesco72 wrote:

Another thing I like is to use my iPad with Navionics software. Actually I use it with an external WiFi GPS completely disconnected from the instruments on board (Dual XGPS150 Universal Bluetooth GPS). It would be great (even if I know that I need to use a software that's able to read NMEA over TCP/UDP like iNavX) if I can connect the iPad to the NMEA flow that comes out from the Seatalk NMEA bridge. Do you think it would be possible to connect the RS232 NMEA output of your Seatalk NMEA bridge to the RS232 input of a RS232 to WiFi module?


Sure. I'm currently working on such a module.
Just got one the other day and currently I'm trying it.
I'll keep you updated.

francesco72 wrote:

P.S.
My job is to make Printed Circuit boards in Italy. To thank you for your work I would like to make samples PCB (for free) for your projects if you do not have already a "for free" pcb supplier Smile We make 1 to 6 layers very good quality PCB. Let me know.


That would be great !. I'd appreciate it ! If you're going to make PCB's, drop me a mail and I'll send you the latest board layouts.
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francesco72
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Joined: Mar 27, 2013
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:55 pm    Post subject: Re: Advices on connections Reply with quote

FWallenwein wrote:

Absolutely correct.
I'd prefere though if you do not sell the boards, Wink


Of course! I never mind to sell or copy your projects to sell them: I would never be able to offer support and it's not my business!

FWallenwein wrote:

If you use the software, or if you make your own software based on mine
[...]
It would help us all.


I can only try to make better PCB but I'm not able to touch the software: there is no need to know electronics to make PCB based on gerber files or a .brd from Eagle.

francesco72 wrote:

[...]
2) Software: I do not want the Autopilot or other instruments receive redundant positioning data (Out from the GPS, in the Chartplotter and then out again to the autopilot ... )

FWallenwein wrote:

To be honest - I'll have to think about it.
Maybe there is someone her, who knows more about Furuno devices.
My first thought :
GPS --> Charplotter --> Autopilot : No Problem.
But than again. I just don't know it the Furuno chartplotter has it's own GPS. That could cause "receive redundant". But I don't know it.


No, the chartplotter has no GPS receiver. What I wanted to say is that now I can only use the GPS to input waypoints and routes and then let them be followed by the autopilot. The Chartplotter is not connected to the autopilot in any way.

My idea of improvement is to connect one of the Chartplotter "NMEA out" to the second "NMEA input" on the autopilot but my concern is that the Chartplotter will send out the position data it receives on it's NMEA IN by the GPS again, and it will unnecessarily add a sentence to the NMEA stream ...

FWallenwein wrote:

[...]
But you wrote you have a ST60 Tridata. Does it not have a log attached to it ?


Yes it has a log attacched but when the boat is at the mooring I always remove it to prevent barnacles formation and when I go sailing I always forget to put it again in its place. A SOG to STW conversion will be more comfortable since the GPS only require a touch of a button to be powered off Smile

francesco72 wrote:

[...] Do you think it would be possible to connect the RS232 NMEA output of your Seatalk NMEA bridge to the RS232 input of a RS232 to WiFi module?

FWallenwein wrote:

Sure. I'm currently working on such a module.
Just got one the other day and currently I'm trying it.
I'll keep you updated.


I can use an external RS232 to WiFi untill you will be ready ...

What about the "Gyro" for the Autopilot? I looked at the shop but it's not possible to buy it ...

francesco72 wrote:

P.S.
My job is to make Printed Circuit boards in Italy ...

FWallenwein wrote:

That would be great !. I'd appreciate it ! If you're going to make PCB's, drop me a mail and I'll send you the latest board layouts.


Tou have a P.M. Smile
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