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    I need an app - why is this so hard!?

    OpenCPN might be an option. It runs on android (though the version that is kept up to date has a one off payment). Official charts are available for it via and possibly elsewhere depending on region. It can receive NMEA data via wifi and can output various other data back to...
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    Personally I wouldn't worry about tinned wire for battery cables. Properly fitted lugs will have decent conductivity and minimal resistance, and they are probably going to be installed in a location where exposure to moisture is kept low anyway. There's no need to tin the cable before you crimp...
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    Lack of intergration of Axiom to i50 and i60

    According to your network diagram above, the way it was connected should work - the Raymarine STNG spur cables have an extra pin to allow them to also carry ST1 data, so having the two instruments daisy chained together and connected to the yellow socket of the STNG - ST1 adapter should allow...
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    Yes that's correct. It won't supply 20A to both battery outputs simultaneously. It will be able to supply 20A in total, split between both terminals. How much current goes to each one would depend on the state of charge of each battery. If you only have one connected, that will get the full 20A.
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    There's a reference to that model here.
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    It's on the spec sheet - they explicitly give performance at 40°C and at 25°C. This video is relevant. This chap tested the Orion 30 with forced ventilation in his van to good effect.
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    The Victron units actually give their rated output at 40°C, so if you can keep them cooler than that they perform better - at 25°C they can output 20-25% more than rated, so it's definitely worth making sure they have good ventilation.
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    The Victron spec sheet for the Orion chargers shows an efficiency of 87% - that means if the output current is 30A, it will be drawing closer to 35A from the input assuming the same voltage. The 18A one would draw about 21A. A 55A alternator should cope fine with a 35A continuous load without...
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    The reason for having it as close as possible is that cabling losses become significant at 12V for high current applications. You can mitigate that to an extent by using thicker cables. The required cable size goes up significantly with length and current, and after a certain point becomes...
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    Smart Alternator/controller

    That's something that's not specifically restricted to drop in type batteries - any MOSFET based BMS will have similar limitations, but with the self-contained batteries you are stuck with whichever BMS capacity they decide to include. At least with separate cells and BMS you can select one...
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    I don't see the benefit of mixing battery chemistries. The reasons that guy gives seem largely centred around making use of his existing lead acid batteries, and in doing so he is complicating the system unnecessarily. Having them in parallel means that the lead acid batteries are always...
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    Plastimo Ladder Fender

    Yes, been using one of the smaller ones for 10 years or so. It's worked well enough for getting out of a tender on to the boat on a swinging mooring. I don't know how well it would work as a swim ladder because it would tend to float and it wouldn't be particularly easy to get your foot into. It...
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    Cheap AIS receiver for laptop or phone?

    You can use an rtl-sdr dongle to receive ais if you connect it to an appropriate antenna. You would need to configure the appropriate software to decode it, and it’s not necessarily plug and play. You can pipe the output to something like opencpn to display it. If you don’t mind experimenting...
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    Anyone using the PCNautic autopilot?

    It seems an interesting system. By all accounts it seems to work reasonably well - one advantage of it being open source is that you can see exactly how it works, and you are free to modify it and experiment as you see fit. I don't know what development PCNautic have done on the controller...
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    Anyone using the PCNautic autopilot?

    Both the Pelagic and PCNautic ones are rebadged Wuxi Hongba actuators, which are available in a variety of configurations, with and without position references. PCNautic include some bits and pieces to make it a drop in replacement. Not sure what Pelagic do. You can order them direct from China...
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    It depends on the operation of the charger. LFP batteries will have a very short absorption phase - they will pull full current until they reach the bulk charging voltage, but it will very quickly drop once it is reached. Most chargers sense the reduced current and switch to float but some fancy...
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    Progress with Lithium Battery Installation

    I disagree that lithium batteries are not simple if talking about Lifepo4 ones which are quite easy to handle. They are just a bit different to lead acid and need to be treated as such, but there’s nothing particularly difficult about it. Problems arise when people don’t take account of the...
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    Anyone using the PCNautic autopilot?

    I’m using their actuator with a Raymarine autopilot and it works well including the rudder reference. I’ve not tried their autopilot controller though. It is an implementation of the open source pypilot as far as I’m aware so that might give you something more to look at. As far as the company...
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    Raymarine Axiom 9 - map is low res - what did I break ?

    There is a 'simple' display mode on the axiom plotters which omits a lot of detail like soundings and makes some features larger which might make it look lower resolution. I have inadvertently activated it before and wondered what was going on - the setting is one of the large buttons on the...
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    SeaTalkNG vs NMEA2000

    It should be able to - have a look in the manual chapter 14 titled 'Using the data application'. I don't know if there is also the capability to add data fields or overlays to the chart app - it is apparently possible to customise the data bar display but I don't know to what extent or what...

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