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Author Topic:   NMEA-2000: Connectors: The Third Generation: DeviceNET
jimh posted 03-15-2007 08:05 AM ET (US)   Profile for jimh   Send Email to jimh  
On the back panel of a new Lowrance instrument I noticed that there is a new connector configuration for the NETWORK port. This new connector is a red plastic connector which has threads for securing the mating plug. I believe this is a new style for Lowrance.

Is this new LowranceNet red plastic thread-on connector going to be a new NMEA-2000 standard?

Texel Tom posted 03-15-2007 03:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for Texel Tom  Send Email to Texel Tom     
The new red connector system is directly compatable with Molex Micro C connectors which are the NMEA-2000 standard. Lowrance will change from their blue network to red starting with the head units first and then the network components. There will be a range of adaptor cordsets for the interim. The new red system introduces a hard double T which will be supplied with all external GPS units removing the need for an expansion kit.


jimh posted 03-16-2007 07:31 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Thanks for the information. It sounds like the NMEA-2000 standard is finally standardizing on a connector.

It appears that Bombardier will be transitioning to the new LowranceNet Red connector for their NMEA-2000 instrumentation beginning in a few months, probably with the model year change over. The Bombardier hub system which has been used for several years will likely be deprecated, although I am certain adapter cables will be available to integrate new and old style devices.

Lowrance has a publication which shows the Micro-C style NMEA-2000 connectors and how to interconnect their LowranceNet connectors to them: NMEA2000_buss_adapter_cable_0154-141_031804.pdf

This older (2006) article also explains more about the connector decision and some of the politics behind it:

jimh posted 03-18-2007 12:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
These Molex Micro-C connectors are also known as DeviceNET connectors.

We now seem to have three generations of NMEA-2000 connectors used with Bombardier motors.

GEN-1: the Bombardier Deutsch connectors and hubs, used initially c.2005.

GEN-2: the LowranceNET blue plastic twist-lock or bayonet style connectors, which are being used in current 2007 products from Bombardier.

GEN-3: the DeviceNET or Molex Micro-C or LowranceNET red plastic threaded connectors which are currently being used on the latest Lowrance products and apparently will come into use on 2008 model-year Bombardier motors. Again, you can recognize this connector by the red color and the threaded coupling on the NETWORK port of Lowrance devices.

The connector changes are just a minor physical layer problem, as the networking of NMEA-2000 remains the same. The various vendors seem to have had a few squabbles while working out what particular connector they would use.

It is good to see that both of the earliest adopters of NMEA-2000, Lowrance and Bombardier, are transitioning to a standardized connector. This should help other vendors see the wisdom of this. It would be nice if all manufacturers who produce NMEA-2000 devices would use the same connector.

sail16 posted 06-08-2007 12:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for sail16  Send Email to sail16     
I've got a NMEA 2000 transducer that uses a 6-pin Deutsch connector that I need to get onto my LawrenceNet. Clearly, the connectors are not plug and play. A few questions:

* It appears the incompatiblily is simply at the physical layer-- is that correct?

* If so, is there any reason I can't simply make my own cable by splicing a Deutsch connector onto a LowranceNet cable?

* Assuming I can make my own cable, what is the pin-out on a blue LowranceNet cable?

jimh posted 06-08-2007 12:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Here is one reference, although perhaps not quite authoritative, but probably accurate: lowrancenet_2_good_news_for_nmea_2000.html

See the follow-up comment at the bottom of the article for the pin-out and wire color coding.

jappjari posted 06-25-2007 04:00 PM ET (US)     Profile for jappjari  Send Email to jappjari     
I think I'm between generations. I bought Lowrance LMS520C combo plotter with LGC3000 GPS module. I think they are using Gen-3. Red connectors. So far OK. However, I also bought E-tec 115 and engine interface cable, blue gen-2 connectors, of course. All those should be 2007 models. My dealer tried to to connect cables two months ago without success. Now I'm just waiting. Can anyone here help me?
jimh posted 06-26-2007 08:46 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
You may be able to fabricate your own adapter cable. The wiring insulation colors should be consistent among the different connectors. You could splice a red and blue connector together.
jappjari posted 07-03-2007 02:28 AM ET (US)     Profile for jappjari  Send Email to jappjari     
Thanks for all. My problem is now solved. I got an adapter cable (RD2BL) Now the other end of the bus is Blue and the other is Red.

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