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Replace S3 Autopilot with Evolution autopilot
02-01-18, 12:40 PM (This post was last modified: 02-01-18 12:40 PM by Derek - Raymarine - Moderator.)
Post: #1
Replace S3 Autopilot with Evolution autopilot
The S3 Autopilot system comprises a control unit (ST6000, ST7000 or ST8000 ranges), possibly more than one may be fitted, a course computer (S3 or S3G), a fluxgate compass and a rudder feedback unit as well as a drive unit.
The S3 system used SeaTalk as a data protocol to communicate between the control unit and the course computer, the compass and rudder feedback unit used analogue signals and were connected direct to the course computer.
The fluxgate compass, ( size of a tennis ball and located below decks clear of any deviating sources), was connected direct to the course computer, as was the rudder feedback unit - a position sensor which fed the position of the rudder back to the course computer.

The Evolution Autopilot comprises a control unit (p70s or p70Rs), possibly more than one may be fitted, an actuator control unit (ACU100/ACU200/ACU300/ACU400 selected to suit the type of drive fitted), there is also an EV heading sensor - required to supply heading data to the system and the Rudder feedback transducer as well as the drive unit.

When upgrading the system to a new Evolution system some of the wiring will need to be modified, the Evolution Autopilot uses STng as a data protocol - not SeaTalk, also there is no NMEA0183 interface built into the course computer. Details of STng can be found here

The existing drive should be checked and serviced as appropriate by a qualified Raymarine service dealer, ( no point fitting new electronics to an old and worn out drive!).

Then the S3 computer can be replaced by the ACU, check the power supply too to ensure sufficient voltage and current is available. The fluxgate compass will be replaced with the EV sensor and the p70s or p70Rs controlunit fitted too. The control unit, the EV sensor and the ACU is all connected via STng, the rudder feedback unit is connected direct to the ACU.

More information can be found here and found here .

Given that the computer of the autopilot is an S3 (or S3G), you will need an ACU400 to supply power to the drive unit being used.

Please check out this section of the Raymarine website for information about Evolution autopilots

RAYFAQ#
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