There is no harder working or valued piece of equipment onboard than the autopilot. It pays for itself many times over in the relief it provides the helmsman on long passages or in heavy seas. A single handed sailor also relies on his autopilot to hold him into the wind or on course as he raises the mainsail or addresses any issues on deck.
Autopilots are comprised of 3 main components: the heading sensor, course computer and drive unit, and there are a few key pieces of information to have in mind as you are considering the repair, replacement or new installation of your autopilot:
• The autopilot needs to be properly sized for your boat’s length, displacement and design.
• You will need to choose an above-deck (better for smaller boats) or below-deck (better for larger boats) autopilot.
• The drive unit you select is based on the vessel’s type of steering: linear, rotary or hydraulic.
• If your steering is hydraulic, the size of hydraulic drive unit you will need is based on the capacity of your steering ram.
• The corepack you select is based on amperage draw and boat displacement.
• You will need to decide what displays you would like to have.
If this seems like a lot of information to synthesize, don’t worry! Moxy Marine Services’ ABYC, NMEA and manufacturer trained and certified technicians have the necessary in-depth knowledge of this marine system.
We can address your autopliot needs in the port of Charleston, SC, or travel to any port of call for major projects.
Contact us for more information.
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