Conversion analogue engine parameters to NMEA 2000

F.scognamiglio

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Hi! I would like to install a NMEA 2000 network on my boat and I'm evaluating the best solution . Now I have to convert all analog engine data ( temp oil, p oil, temp water, battery volt, fuel level signals to NMEA and send them to a Raymarine MFD A78 also capable as fishfinder.
For that purpose I have selected the Noland RS 11 converter and so I'm asking for your support in checking if it could be able for converting engine data, approximately 7, to NMEA 2000 signals to be managed by a Raymarine MFD. I would like to know , moreover, if complex calibration tools and procedures should eventually be necessary. If not possibile, do you suggest any alternative solution? Where could I buy the necessary items ?
I thank you very much for the support.
Best regards.
F. Scognamiglio
 

Slipstream 34

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I fitted a Noland RS11 a couple of years ago to a Perkins 4108 feeding data to a Raymarine network, E80 plotter and i70 instruments. Very simple to fit and calibrate. Very happy with the results.
 

F.scognamiglio

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Many thanks. I would have been assured about the correct solution before starting the modification. I found the Noland RS 11 one of the cheapest solutions and so I'm happy to know about a previous experience of using it.
I thank you again very much
Best regards

Francesco
 

Irish Rover

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I was looking at the Noland RS11 online a while back and I thought it looked interesting - I'm never absolutely sure the analogue gauges/alarms on my bridge console are working or accurate. What's the best source to buy from in the UK?
 

F.scognamiglio

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Has anyone experienced a modification through the AlbaCombi converter? It would be a good solution as it is easily available in Europe even on Amazon site. I don’t know however if it is reliable and if the calibration process is achievable even for a doityourself job.
 

vas

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I have an RS11 sending oil pressure, coolant temp, turbo boost and RPM from two engines to the N2K bus. Works fine, easy to calibrate, no special tools, just a laptop and common sense.
Having played and built various black boxes for analogue signals to N2K using Timo's arduino libraries (https://github.com/ttlappalainen/NMEA2000) If I had to do it again, I'd go fully custom, but hindsight is a wonderful thing...
Currently also have gbox oil pressure, and temp, EGT, seawater circuit pressure, engine oil temp (all X2) working on the bus, good fun if you're so inclined. If you want a turnkey solution, I think RS11 is the cheapest of them (was at least when I checked last time a couple of years ago)

cheers

V.
 

Irish Rover

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I'm going to order an RS11 direct from Noland in the US and hopefully get my technically minded son to fit it when he visits in June. I plan to marry it with my Garmin 820xs. Could anyone please advise what accessories or connectors I'd need to order with it. Thanks.
 

vas

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I'm going to order an RS11 direct from Noland in the US and hopefully get my technically minded son to fit it when he visits in June. I plan to marry it with my Garmin 820xs. Could anyone please advise what accessories or connectors I'd need to order with it. Thanks.

do you already have a NMEA2000 bus running?
ie, do you have a NMEA2000 device (other than the plotter itself)?

If the answer is yes, I think you need nothing except maybe a patch cable long enough to fit the RS11 somewhere handy behind the instruments and get it connected to the N2K bus.
Assuming plotter is near the gauges at the helm, I'd guess a 2m cable will be enough.
IIRC the RS11 comes with a tee adapter.
Have a look at a N2K diagram (Garmin has loads) to understand the logic of the thing, it's really simple.

Now if you DONT have a N2K bus already installed, you need a N2K power cable a tee and two terminators.
I do have some extra if you want, easy if you're here, more difficult if you're in TR, cheap to get them on ebay

cheers

V.
 

Irish Rover

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do you already have a NMEA2000 bus running?
ie, do you have a NMEA2000 device (other than the plotter itself)?

If the answer is yes, I think you need nothing except maybe a patch cable long enough to fit the RS11 somewhere handy behind the instruments and get it connected to the N2K bus.
Assuming plotter is near the gauges at the helm, I'd guess a 2m cable will be enough.
IIRC the RS11 comes with a tee adapter.
Have a look at a N2K diagram (Garmin has loads) to understand the logic of the thing, it's really simple.

Now if you DONT have a N2K bus already installed, you need a N2K power cable a tee and two terminators.
I do have some extra if you want, easy if you're here, more difficult if you're in TR, cheap to get them on ebay

cheers

V.
Thank you for your generous advice and your more than generous offer. I'm in Turkey and it's not always easy to get the small bits and pieces here. Language issue doesn't help - my Turkish is passable but my poor grasp of technical things combined with my poor Turkish makes life a bit challenging sometimes. At the moment the plotters is just connected to a standard horizon vhf receiving AIS data. Noland offer a basic kit https://www.nolandeng.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=26&products_id=45. Would this be what I need? Thanks again.
 

vas

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How is the Standard Horizon VHF connected to the plotter? do you know?
Could be either NMEA2000 or NMEA0183.
Can you take a pic of the inards/back face of the plotter?
Is the VHF next or nearby the plotter?
Are the gauges you're going to hook up to next to the plotter (I guess so!)?
is your cat single helm station, if not where are most of the gauges?

Assuming you dont have a N2K bus already installed and the VHF is connected with two tiny wires to the plotter, yep the NoLand starter kit you've linked to has all the bits you'll need!
The only other thing you need is a laptop (I assume you have one as you're posting here :p ) and a typical USB cable as the ones used in a usb printer or scanner (not sure if it's included in the NoLand kit), you know the ones with the usb port on the one side and the squarish one on the other to connect to the RS11.

What brand are the gauges? and er, what's the point of this exercise if you're single station?

cheers

V.
 

Irish Rover

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How is the Standard Horizon VHF connected to the plotter? do you know?
Could be either NMEA2000 or NMEA0183.
Can you take a pic of the inards/back face of the plotter?
Is the VHF next or nearby the plotter?
Are the gauges you're going to hook up to next to the plotter (I guess so!)?
is your cat single helm station, if not where are most of the gauges?

Assuming you dont have a N2K bus already installed and the VHF is connected with two tiny wires to the plotter, yep the NoLand starter kit you've linked to has all the bits you'll need!
The only other thing you need is a laptop (I assume you have one as you're posting here :p ) and a typical USB cable as the ones used in a usb printer or scanner (not sure if it's included in the NoLand kit), you know the ones with the usb port on the one side and the squarish one on the other to connect to the RS11.

What brand are the gauges? and er, what's the point of this exercise if you're single station?

cheers

V.
My cat has 2 stations but the f/bridge is the primary station and all gauges, plotter, VHF are located there. On the rare occasions when I pilot from the salon station I use Garmin Helm on a tablet. The plotter and VHF are very close to each other on the bridge as are all the gauges. The VHF and plotter are currently connected via the skinny wires. I'm not 100% sure what brand the gauges are [will check tomorrow] but as I mentioned in a previous post above I'm not entirely sure they're always reliable and I reckon buying this unit will be cheaper than replacing the gauges and tachos, it will give me 2 sources for the essential readings and I'll be able to monitor from the salon station on the tablet when I'm down below.
Thanks again. I really appreciate your help.
 

vas

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np in my office waiting for students...

final warning then I'll shut up and wait for the report that everything is up and running :D

senders (on the engine) produce some current/voltage depending which comes up with wires to the dash and the back of the gauges.
This is all nice and analogue, so mashed cables, corroded connections, etc mess things up A LOT, fix them now!
say oil pressure sender produces 1.4V at 2bar and 2.7V at 4bar
The way you calibrate the RS11 is just like that, get two discreet values sets and import them in the supplied s/w.
Then you expect that the in between (as well as outside the limits of the two sets of values you added) is linear. Typically it's linear enough.
However, you'll be fooling yourself if you expect in the N2K bus more accurate values than the ones you get in the bridge gauges, you wont, they'll be generally about right.
So the whole exercise will be a way to monitor values from the helm app whilst you're relaxing inside recovering from the sun and heat, nothing more.
The above DONT apply to RPM, RPM will be the only thing accurate and you should be able to tune engine rpm based on that :D

You'll soon realise that helm app is a pain and buy a dedicated multigauge thing (Garmin GMI10 or GMI20 are perfect for that) and have a screen split in 4 two values on the left for port two on the right for stbrd, built 2 or 3 custom screens on it and be able to loop and monitor everything you want. You can also use the same GMI for anchor drag alarm or depth alarm as well and you can have alarms on engine data as well (IIRC) so a decent tool for the salon area.

good luck!

cheers

V.
 

Irish Rover

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@vas thanks for your previous advice. Could I impose once again and ask if there's a way to have the analogue gauge in parallel with the RS11 from a thermistor sender.
 

superheat6k

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I fitted the RS11 to my Turbo 36 and found it quite easy to set up using Hyperterminal on an older Windows laptop, although they may have now improved the comms method to the box. Once set up I never had to touch the thing again for the next 3 years I owned the boat.

However, I did feel it was expensive for what it did.

The Garmin NMEA2000 backbone kit is good value and easy to set up. I read the data on a Garmin GPSMAP750 plotter set up on my flybridge. I found the bar graph tacho graphics particularly useful for synchronising the engines.
 

vas

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@vas thanks for your previous advice. Could I impose once again and ask if there's a way to have the analogue gauge in parallel with the RS11 from a thermistor sender.

that's the default mode, not really sure what you mean.
It's not like you have to disconnect the analogue gauge in order to fit the RS11.
check the docs a bit more, should be fairly clear. What gauges have you got and how many stations, I guess analogue gauges only on lower (inside?) helm

As Trevor says, it's set and forget and haven't bothered with it for the last 3-4 yrs it's on.

cheers

V.
 

Irish Rover

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that's the default mode, not really sure what you mean.
It's not like you have to disconnect the analogue gauge in order to fit the RS11.
check the docs a bit more, should be fairly clear. What gauges have you got and how many stations, I guess analogue gauges only on lower (inside?) helm

As Trevor says, it's set and forget and haven't bothered with it for the last 3-4 yrs it's on.

cheers

V.
As I've admitted before I'm not very technically minded so please excuse any nonsense I may write. The gauges are VDO and on the bridge only. There are no gauges at the inside helm. My technical adviser (my son) says the engine senders for temp and oil p are current based and we won't get a proper reading if we tap into the sender wire to share the signal with the RS11. He says if the senders were voltage based we could share between the gauges and RS11. He's planning to do some more research but that was his initial thought.
 

vas

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:D no worries, your tech adviser is right, except you don't "steal" from the sender, you wire them at the gauge end (makes life easier as well as everything should be relatively accessible)
As I said, don't remember much and struggling with time as I just lifted my boat for the preseason maintenance and need to be back in the water in 10days, so if he checks the NoLand engineering site there should be wiring diagrams to do it. And anyway, you don't get immediate values by wiring it up, you need your laptop wired to the usb of the RS11, the engines running and mapping two points of data (I did one low one high/normal operation) which you then upload onto the RS11 and then it works. Sounds complicated but it really isn't

cheers

V.
 
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