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Pete

The Raymarine SeaTalkSeaTalkng Converter

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Hi,

I have a boat with the typical classic Raymarine instrument fit - mostly ST60 instruments, an S1 autopilot, and a C70 plotter with radar. Unfortunately the plotter has died, and I'm in the early stages of choosing its successor.

Sadly replacing all the other instruments is not going to be feasible, so some conversion is in order and the Raymarine E22158 will probably be the key item. I have a few questions not answered in its manual that I hope folks here might be able to answer from experience.

1) The manual states a maximum of five SeaTalk devices. Is this a real limit, or were they just concerned about power or something? I will have four instruments, an autopilot, the autopilot control head (on the other connector in the pilot, but I think they're the same bus electrically), the pilot wireless remote base, and an E85001 nmea0183 converter feeding a chart table data display. A total of 8 devices on the SeaTalk1, but they'll be powered from the autopilot. Is this likely to be a problem in practice?

2) They're a bit vague about how power works. My default plan would be to keep the two networks separately powered (but ultimately from the same supply busbars) and only connected via the SeaTalk1 yellow data core and ground screen. OK?

3) Does the converter bridge to standard PGNs (and if so, does anybody have a list?) so that I have a free choice of NMEA2k equipment (especially, the choice of plotter) on the new network? Or is there lots of Raymarine proprietary stuff so that in practice I should only be looking at new Raymarine plotters? I'm suspicious in particular of the autopilot control - at present I do command the pilot from the C70 plotter reasonably frequently, and I'd be sorry to lose that facility.

Answers to these questions, and any other general advice, welcome :-)

Pete

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  • Hi Pete,

    I saw good results with the ST-STng converter:

    https://www.panbo.com/archives/2010/11/raymarine_st-stng_converter_hands_on_1_gps.html

    There is a list of standard PGNs translated at the end of the E22158 manual, and Chapter 4 goes over the different ways to power the ST and STng networks. I don't think it's vague and I don't think you should mess with not attaching wires unless you're sure about what you're doing. It looks to me, for instance, that they expect you to power both networks off the autopilot if the old ST network is already powered that way.

    file:///G:/GDrive/111%20DOWNLOAD/SeaTalk%20to%20SeaTalkng%20converter%20Installation%20instructions%2087255-1-EN.pdf

    By the way, real autopilot control -- like switching from Standby to Auto, or changing auto heading -- is not done using standard PGNs by any manufacturer I know of. It has to be same brand AP and MFD. But most any AP should be able to get go-to waypoint and wind info from standard PGNs.

    Some valuable info on old Raymarine Tech Forum:

    http://raymarine.ning.com/forum/topic/listForTag?tag=E22158

    General SeaTalkNG manual:

    http://www.raymarine.com/view/?id=400&collectionid=197&col=1597

  • Thanks Ben, I'll have a read of that article.

    "Vague" might be unfair, I was tired when I read that part of the manual :-). I'm pretty familiar with SeaTalk 1 (to the point of having built hardware to talk to it) and the concept of connecting or not connecting the power conductor is business as usual for me. But I have zero hands-on experience with N2K.

    In the simplest case, my N2k "network" will just be the converter and the new plotter, and then it makes a lot of sense to power the converter from the old SeaTalk side (I assume the plotter won't try to draw power from the N2K). But I might end up with more N2K items in future and I don't necessarily want to keep powering them all from the original old SeaTalk.

    Thanks for the point about autopilot control - as I say, no previous N2k experience so I wasn't aware of that. So it's a case of either sticking with Raymarine for the new plotter, or changing the autopilot as well. I wonder whether pilots have improved enough in the last 20 years to be worth upgrading...

    Pete

  • Hi Pete,

    Check out my (maybe too complicated) diagram of a very similar setup here:

    https://www.sailbits.com/grace/ (scroll down and click on the diagram)

    I bought Grace and she had no chart plotter or GPS of any kind. Only ST60 instruments which I didn't/couldn't replace.

    I have the converter in place with the MFD, and the ST60 stuff connected to it. The MFD needs it's own dedicated power source, not from a NMEA 2000 bus or the converter. I then added a 5 port SeaTalk hub and plugged other newer Raymarine stuff into it (auto pilot bits) and then connected that to the rest of my NMEA 2000 network.

    The converter does a great job of dumping the wind and depth info onto the SeaTalk and NMEA 2000 (they're really the same) networks, and vise versa - the PGNs that Ben talked about above are flowing back onto the ST60's so they can do more accurate calculation of various things like AWS, etc.

    I documented part of my install of this at https://www.sailbits.com/blog/2016/06/grace-integrated-5-part-network/

    For a number of years before this, on my old boat, I fought trying to get different manufacturer autopilots to work with various MFDs and control systems, and was never successful. That is why on Grace I chose all Raymarine for MFD and autopilot. Other than some usual teething with the new eS series of MFD, it has worked like a dream.

    Good luck with your install. If you do go this route, make sure you download the newest firmware for everything and update things before trying to configure and calibrate. My converter just got a software update a few weeks ago which looks like it improves some of the communication and fixes some bugs.

  • Sorry I didn't see this thread earlier (tho we were in the Bahamas when it happened :)

    We have ST60 instruments (depth, speed, wind) while the rest of the system is fairly new (EVO Autopilot, e95 MFD, digital radar, a pair of i70 displays). The ONLY issue we've had is that once in a while, the convertor fails - presumably the microprocessor is getting stuck. When this happens, all the instrument data freezes up on the N2K(STng) side(and the instruments no longer see things like SOG from the MFD). The instrument displays themselves continue to function properly. Cycling the power fixes it. It's never done this when it would make a difference (or even when underway) so I haven't considered pulling it out & sending it back. It does this trick maybe once every couple months. We have the latest firmware installed in everything.

  • That's weird that it locks up. I have almost the same set of instruments, plus I have extended it onto a NMEA 2000 network, and never have had a lockup in the last year at least of the converter.

  • Hi Steve, I have a feeling it may be my sample. Since it is VERY occasional, I haven't taken any steps to R & R it. Oddly, I have an occasional hangup with one of my two i70s as well - I have noticed that just prior to the problem, the display will show an occasional "glitch" or flicker - then it stops updating the display info. Interestingly, if you try to turn it off with the menu button to effect a reset, it will pop up the countdown screen - but it never counts down. Power cycling fixes it immediately.
    Our i70s and the instrument buss are never turned off - 24/7/365 while the AP controller, MFD and radar are shut down when we're not actually at sea.
    I've considered putting a few hundred thousand microfarads across the 12V supply to the instrument buss just to see if it fixes anything :)

  • I had some issues with my previous boat and i70s freezing as well. Same problem where it wouldn't shut down, but power cycling fixed it. Again, on that boat, I had a lot of other NMEA 2000 devices (40 or so) that may have been causing some interconnectivity issues. But now reading about your setup, maybe it's not...

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