Yes Please came equipped with Raymarine Electronics, so it was time to re-program the AIS unit with the new boat name (formerly Maverick) and to troubleshoot a very annoying alarm that constantly pops up that the “connection to the DSM module has been lost”. The first order of business was to find the modules, then figure out how to access them. It took a bit of hard pulling on the Autopilot, and eventually the dash popped off and I was able to see how things were hooked up.
My mini-usb cable turned out to be a little too short, which necessitated holding the laptop with one hand while typing with the other. Eventually, I was able to re-program the AIS unit with the new “Yes Please” boat name and then updated the AIS firmware to the latest version. This was very easy to do using the ProAIS software and USB drivers. I was also glad the laptop batteries were in good shape, since I forgot the power cable. DOH!
Next, I updated the E120 chart plotter to the latest version of firmware, which helped with troubleshooting the Raymarine SeaTalk network issues. Then I began to investigate the dropping DSM module error that constantly appears.It turns out that the Raymarine Depth Sounder Module (DSM300) was the victim of very poor engineering. The Ray supplied power cable is too thin (insufficient gauge) to handle the 8 amps of load required. As a result, when the DSM pings, it attempts to draw 8 Amps of current through the too thin wire, which drops the voltage below the unit’s minimum voltage set point (obviously set too high), so the unit drops out and restarts. Wow, engineering has fallen a long way since Raytheon invented the Magnetron (radar) during WWII!