Albin 28 TE Autopilot

GPS, Sonor, Radar, Fish Finder, etc. Discuss electronics installation and upgrades.
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Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:27 pm

I intend to add an autopilot to a 2002 Albin 28TE (doesn't have one now)--what autopilot have you folks had good success with--Raymarine/Simrad/Robertson/Garmin?? What model? Ease of installation

Chuck P

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Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:43 pm

Hey Chuck, as you pointed out there are a few options. I am sure that there will be some recommendations such as one brand vs another.
You do not need to have the autopilot be of the same brand as your chart-plotter or such but there are reasons why you may wish to do that. It is usually easier to interface them when they are from the same manufacture and there could be "features" that only work when they are. They are getting better at this but it can still be tricky.

Im not sure what you are starting with ?

2001 28TE - Doghouse

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Tue Aug 02, 2011 8:08 am

cpeter6231 wrote:I intend to add an autopilot to a 2002 Albin 28TE (doesn't have one now)--what autopilot have you folks had good success with--Raymarine/Simrad/Robertson/Garmin?? What model? Ease of installation

Chuck P
Hi Chuck,
I installed the Raymarine ST 6002 last year. Works well, no problems. This is the push button model. I had wanted the ST 8002 with the knob for steering but didn't have room on the panel. I've noticed that it's "off" 4-5 degrees from my GPS. I have tried several times to calibrate but when it's choppy, it's off. It's probably me, not the unit. If I was crossing the Atlantic I would be more concerned.
If you search around the board you'll find others that have installed auto-pilots and documented with pictures.
Former - 28 TE Convertible"Afterglow"

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Thu Aug 04, 2011 10:50 am

I had a Raymarine Smart Pilot X-10 with the ST-70 control head and rudder reference transducer installed on Quest shortly after purchasing her in early 2009. It was not integrated with the old chartplotter since I was planning to upgrade that. The unit worked fine but I did have the same issue as John with compass inaccuracy. After a failure of the drive pump in 2010 and a misdiagnosis that the course computer was bad compounded by very slow service response from Raymarine, I had the whole system replaced with a Simrad AP-28 system. Later I upgraded the chartplotter to a Simrad NSE-8 and integrated it with the autopilot. It works great and the compass is amazingly accurate. The integration with the chartplotter also works well. Both systems do a good job of steering the boat. I prefer the Simrad mainly because of the rotary knob control head, the excellent integration with the chartplotter, and the outstanding compass accuracy. But the Raymarine system is also a good choice especially if you have a Raymarine chartplotter. One recommendation if you decide on Raymarine. They will tell you you don't need a rudder reference. I'm sure this is true but I'm also told the system works better with it. Also it gives you a rudder position indication on the display. I find that information very useful in low speed maneuvering.

Well now after praising the Simrad, the Raymarine system I removed is available for about half the price of a new one. Everything is there except the hydraulic pump and the course computer is fresh back from a checkout and software update by Raymarine. Let me know if you're interested.
Lou Bennett
2002 Albin 28 TE

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Thu Aug 04, 2011 12:45 pm

Last spring I installed Sitex SP70 into my 40 Albin. I know not the same boat, but the Sitex is a very low cost system. The entire package was $1800 from Defender (including the pump) and it was dropped shipped in 2 days from Sitex on Long Island, NY.
I hesitated for a long time before I bought the Sitex because of the low cost. However I am very pleasantly surprised at the performance and simpicity. I got the SP70 because helm space is at a premium on my boat, and this unit uses only a small remote as a controller.
It is tied into my Garmin GPS and it does a great job of running the boat. We named it "Abe" because Abe freed the slaves ....I am no longer a slave at the helm.

Here's an installation tip...when you T into your hydraulic lines, install some mini shut off valves so you can easily change out the pump in the future without losing fluid. Since I had an old no longer working autopilot in my boat when I bought it, I did this and did not lose more than a tablespoon of fluid. I also ran standard lengths of high pressure hydraulic hose from the valves to the pump. That makes installation of that part a snap.
I bought the valves and hoses thru McMaster Carr online.
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Sun Sep 09, 2018 10:16 am

Just invested in Garmin Echomap Chartplotter Chirp 94SV. My 2001 Albin 28TE needs a autopilot. If the Sitex SP20 integrates and can be seen on my new plotter,,,, I would give the Sitex a shot..... Rhumb Line

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Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:04 pm

I have a model year 2001 28 TE with original electronics by Raytheon. The GPS unit is no longer serviceable and needs to be replaced. I have all matching Raytheon electronics on this boat with Sea Talk. Auto Pilot, Radar, GPS and Sonar.

If I replace the GPS unit with updated technology, will I lose the auto pilot and Radar? I am thinking about installing a Garmin combo GPS/Chart-plotter with a fish finder.

I would like to retain the auto pilot and radar on this boat. I contacted Ray-marine about these older electronics and they were no help as the technology I currently have is so old, they no longer support updates and or adapters to the sea talk program. Ray-Marine did not know if the the auto pilot and radar would no longer be reliable without the older GPS model linked to sea talk.

Looking for suggestions.

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Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:22 pm

I added the Simrad - didn't add the control unit as I already have Simrad Chart Plotters at both stations and they have control units built in. I would agree with a few others - your choice may be best based on the current systems you have in place.
Reb Buckley
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Fri Jan 11, 2019 9:59 pm

Got the ST 5000 Autopilot, installed at the dealer when the boat was commissioned in 2001.
Works good, not problems. (Knock on wood)
960 hours on the boat/motor/systems.
The ST 5000 is hooked up the a Garmin 1040XS chart plotter and the Garmin is hooked up to a Standard Horizon VHF/DSC/AIS so yes, they all work together. It would probably be best to have it all from one manufacturer.

Previous boat had a Garmin 1040XS and a Garmin Autopilot with the “Smart Pump”. Worked great, impressive system.
2001 28TE, 6LP-STE, 1,144 hrs. 19X18 four-blade wheel.

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