Brains in the Bilge Page 6
By Ben Ellison
I saw this wireless remote demonstrated at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show and was inspired to utter, “How cool is that?” When you set it up to operate main-engine transmissions and thrusters, you can maneuver a boat any which way from anywhere onboard that suits you. You can even step onto a dock and handle your own dock lines (though it’s probably a good idea to have someone onboard ready to take over if something goes amiss). I particularly liked how the spring toggle switches could kick an engine in gear for just a few shaft revolutions. The system purportedly works with any electronic engine and thruster controls and, in lieu of a stern thruster, can run an anchor windlass (a six-function unit is in development). A malfunction or communications break will sound an alarm and send all machinery back to neutral mode. In addition, the wireless signal is coded for security. At presstime the price of the Yacht Controller was $4,495 for dual engines, including normal installation, with thrusters or windlasses each costing an additional $500.
Marelux Phone: (954) 463-2838. www.marelux.net.
This article originally appeared in the January 2004 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.