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View Full Version : Very innovative boat control system.



Boonejeepin
02-17-2015, 10:58 PM
I wanted to share a product that was posted on the Tige forum. One of the members there has created a system that integrates almost all functions of the boat, ballast, stereo, etc... Very impressive. The system can be integrated with virtually any boat and tailored to your ideas.

I am not sure if the product is or will be available to the public as the owner wants to sell the technology/idea/patents not the product.

www.waketouch.com

gregski
02-18-2015, 01:52 AM
Very cool. He is selling the IP of the design, so there isn't a product yet but I'd really like to see boat control systems head in this direction so I hope it catches on.

I'm scared that the current/future boats are based on a highly custom touch-screen controller. What happens if it breaks? Does your boat become useless without everything but basic engine control? For now, you can get a replacement, even if it's really expensive, but what happens when your boat is 15 years old, no longer supported by the manufacturer and you can't get a replacement? I have always wondered why they weren't using more standard components like tablets.

I've actually been working on a similar solution. It started with a method to monitor the pumps to automatically turn them off when the ballast was empty - easy: just monitor the pump current. But then I added pressure sensors to measure ballast fill levels, automatic control of a cross over pump to act as a booster pump and automatic stereo volume control based on engine speed. In terms of general architecture, I'm using an Arduino controller, instead of a PIC because I was being lazy and I'm using bluetooth to communicate to an Android device instead of USB because wireless has cool factor. I only want it for personal use because I don't care to spend the time to "productize" it including support and everything else. I never thought to just sell the IP.

sandm
02-18-2015, 08:27 AM
I have wondered the same thing. I know that my tige has redundant switching under the dash. if someone was inclined, they could replace the tt system with switches. the only thing missing at that point would be perfect pass.
not sure on the other manufacturers and whether or not you are stuck.
as much as I like some of the automated features(cant even remember the last time I turned a blower on), do think that basic switches in a custom unit like a boat should remain standard. supra has it down with electronics and redundant switching still at dash level.

WABoating
02-20-2015, 01:24 PM
as much as I like some of the automated features(cant even remember the last time I turned a blower on), do think that basic switches in a custom unit like a boat should remain standard.
Thought I responded to this, but I don't see it, so here it is again.

You're absolutely correct, which is why we included multiple emergency power connections on our interface board. Those terminals go STRAIGHT to the battery through a dedicated fuse. Everything else can be dead and you're still able to safely deballast and get back on the trailer or dock.

The problem with the emergency handling on other systems is they still depend on too many things working. When things to to Hades in a handbasket, you need stuff to be 110% simple and reliable.

Think about the "Empty All" switches you see under the dash on some systems. A single switch cannot handle the current to drive all the deballasting pumps, so that means the switch is just turning on a bunch of relays. But relays and switches fail. If the reason you cannot deballast is because your relays have failed, hitting the "Empty All" switch doesn't solve your problem. The bad relay(s) are still bad, and you don't have a solution. Want to try trailering while still ballasted?

On our board, you can pull the pump wires and plug them into the emergency terminals. Now the pump is directly connected to the battery through a dedicated fuse. There are two sets of emergency terminals, so you can run two pumps simultaneously this way. It may be slower, it may seem crude, but you will get that ballast off your boat and be able to safely get the boat out of the water.

Good Engineering means you have to anticipate problems and come up with ultra-reliable backup plans.

sandm
02-20-2015, 03:55 PM
I am not a fan of any of the electronic advancements in wakeboats today for the simple fact that replacement of the components is going to be expensive. displays are going to cost a lot of scratch to replace. I think the supra system is the best of both worlds having a display with well placed redundant switches, but you do lose cruise if the display fries(so I'm told). not a need to have but a nice to have. the displays look to me to be the main part of these that will fail over time.
your system is, or appears to be, nothing more than a separate electronics box(similar to murphy/medallion) that uses a tablet as it's display. using a common off the shelf display would eliminate a lot of the worries of being stuck should it burn out, even to the point of having a backup loaded up on a smartphone as an app and plug and go. still an electronics box to worry about under the dash, but for me, a much smaller worry.

on a related note, when I wired the extra pumps/relays into my tigetouch panel, I discovered that you can bypass the switches/relays, go straight to the medallion panel and drain pumps if needed. iirc, each drain/fill wire that goes to the actual pumps has a "hot" terminal right next to it that you can move the wire to and activate the pump.. it's a pita, but can be accomplished and wires/connections are labeled pretty well. very similar to your board.

WABoating
02-20-2015, 06:36 PM
I am not a fan of any of the electronic advancements in wakeboats today
I understand your position. The new features on today's boats necessitate more advanced systems. But there needs to be a path of what we call "graceful degradation" so you aren't stranded if something fails.


can be accomplished and wires/connections are labeled pretty well. very similar to your board.
I'm impressed. That shows good foresight on Medallion's part.

kaneboats
02-21-2015, 01:49 AM
Uhhh. This is the Moomba side. Keep it cheap and reliable. Let the fancy folk impress each other with how they fill their ballast from their Iphones, OK?

mmandley
02-21-2015, 06:05 AM
I wanted to share a product that was posted on the Tige forum. One of the members there has created a system that integrates almost all functions of the boat, ballast, stereo, etc... Very impressive. The system can be integrated with virtually any boat and tailored to your ideas.

I am not sure if the product is or will be available to the public as the owner wants to sell the technology/idea/patents not the product.

www.waketouch.com

Hey that's my boat, and my face in the reflection at 2:14 lol.

Boonejeepin
02-21-2015, 03:53 PM
That's crazy.

viking
02-21-2015, 11:27 PM
lol you should get some kind of royalty for life if/when it sells :)

bergermaister
02-22-2015, 03:53 AM
I would like to introduce myself as MMandley's personal / professional agent. Any discusssions or negotiations regarding personal appearances should be directed to my agency. We will contact you regarding terms and conditions of public appearances as well as royalties associated with any product endorsements. Please have your people contact my people. We would like to establish NDA's and pubic appearance requirements before proceeding any further.

WABoating
03-18-2015, 03:16 PM
Since our announcement, we've been getting a lot of behind-the-scenes questions about draft sensors. Bottom line: Boat manufacturers think marine industrial draft sensors cost too much. So just like we solved the over-expensive helm instrumentation problem, we have developed a robust and economical wakeboat draft sensor and we thought folks here might appreciate seeing it. (Note: We're cross-posting this to a few places.)
http://waketouch.com/images/draftsensor.jpg
Our sensor design consists of a section of one inch PVC pipe with a male threaded fitting on its bottom end and a cap with a small hole on its top end. The pipe screws into a standard thruhull+ball valve just like a ballast pump, and stands roughly vertically in the hull (it does not have to be perfectly vertical). This allows water to fill the pipe from the bottom, seeking a common level with the water surrounding the hull.

On either side of the pipe you can see two strips of metal foil. The tops of the foils connect to a small, waterproof module attached to the top of the pipe. Those of you familiar with electronic components will recognize that the foils act as two plates of a capacitor. The module at the top measures that capacitance and reports it as an analog voltage on one of the three wires at the top (the other two power the module).

The capacitance between those two foils changes as the material between them known as the dielectric changes. We use the water rising up and down within the pipe to cause a huge change in the capacitance, which we can then measure and report.

When the tube is completely empty (hull out of water), the output voltage is 1.0VDC. When the tube is completely full (hull deep in water), the output voltage is 5.0VDC. And as the water levels varies up and down, so does the output a nice voltage indication of hull draft!

Our draft sensor is essentially bombproof. It has no moving parts and requires zero maintenance. Nothing electrical touches the water. It can be built to virtually any height (the one in the photo is 24 inches tall) so it is compatible with hulls of any draft and freeboard. It is rugged; the production version is covered in heat shrink (we left it off this one so you could see the details). The components are off-the-shelf and available today in production quantities. Best of all, cost to build is under $40 and it can be assembled by traditional employees in a boat factory.

Can you tell we enjoy solving problems with technology?