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Author Topic:   NMEA-2000 Backbone Cables and Components
jimh posted 03-06-2011 10:25 AM ET (US)   Profile for jimh   Send Email to jimh  
In small boats most NMEA-2000 networks are using the NMEA-2000 MICRO wiring standard, which is also known as DeviceNET and LowranceNET-Red. Several manufacturers are offering NMEA-2000 cables, Network-Tee connectors, terminators, and power cables which are compatible with this standard.

GARMIN has quite a line of NMEA-2000 cable accessories. The best method I have found to see most of them is to visit the website BUY.GARMIN.COM and use a search with the query "backbone." This will reveal several pages of NMEA wiring accessories.
https://buy.garmin.com/shop/search.do?searchStr=backbone

LOWRANCE also sells NMEA-2000 cable accessories. The best method I have found to see most of them is to visit the website LEI-EXTRAS.COM and navigate to page for LowranceNET Red accessories.
http://www.lei-extras.com/store/search.asp?SearchType=Category& Category=LowranceNET+Red

It appears the GARMIN has better pricing on some cable items, but LOWRANCE is better on other accessories. Here are a few comparisons:

2-Meter Backbone Extension Cable

GARMIN 010-11076-00 $25
LOWRANCE 127-53 $42.86

25-foot or 32-foot Backbone Extension Cable

GARMIN 010-11076-02 $35 (32-foot)
LOWRANCE 119-83 $58.93 (25-foot)

Network Tee Connector

GARMIN 010-11078-00 $20
LOWRANCE 119-79 $16.07

Network Terminator Male and Female

GARMIN 010-11080-00 $10 (male)
GARMIN 010-11081-00 $10 (female)
LOWRANCE 00-0127-52 $10.71 (Set of two, male and female)

jimh posted 03-06-2011 10:41 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
A third source of NMEA MICRO wiring devices is MARETRON. MARETRON does not have a listing (that I could find) of their product suggested retail prices, and it does not have a direct sales website. The best source for information on prices is from their resellers. Here is a link to a retailer with good product support:

http://www.blueheronmarine.com/NMEA-2000-Cable/Maretron-Micro-Cable/

We can make a few price comparisons to GARMIN and LOWRANCE. Here we are comparing retail prices from a vendor with GARMIN list price and LOWRANCE direct sales prices.

A 32-foot cord set is PN MR-31801 and retails for $40, $5 more than GARMIN but cheaper than LOWRANCE.

A 6-foot cord set is PN MR-33357 and retails for $23, cheaper than both GARMIN and LOWRANCE.

Network Tee connectors are PN MR-31789 and retail for $18, about the same as GARMIN and LOWRANCE. However, note that the MARETRON wiring components have metal threaded connector locks, not plastic ones as on GARMIN and LOWRANCE devices.

Network terminators are $10 each, the same as GARMIN, but more expensive than LOWRANCE.

For general information on MARETRON cable products, see

http://www.maretron.com/products/cabling.php

SJUAE posted 03-06-2011 03:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     
Jim

Thats why the starter kit from Lowrance is such good value over individual parts, don't know if Garmin or others do a similar one.

Lowrance NMEA Starter kit Part #124-69 around 60USD
Network starter kit. Includes 2 terminating resistors (TR-120M-RD, TR-120F-RD), two T-connectors (N2K-T-RD), one 2 ft extension cable (N2KEXT-2RD), and one 15 ft extension cable (N2KEXT-15RD), and a power node (N2K-PWR-RD)

Regards
Steve

SJUAE posted 03-06-2011 03:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     
Wow only 45.69 at LEI-EXTRAS

http://www.lei-extras.com/store/search.asp?SearchType=ProdNum& ProdNum=124-69

I think there is also an expansion kit available that works out cheaper too

Regards
Steve

jimh posted 03-06-2011 03:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
GARMIN has a NMEA-2000 starter kit package, too. Its price is $99:

https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?pID=66030

The kit includes:

--backbone cable 32-feet
--drop cable 6-feet
--terminators (2)
--power cable
--network Tee connector (2)

jimh posted 03-07-2011 01:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
An interesting detail about the MARETRON network wiring is its practice with connector gender on their Network Power Tee connector. Most NMEA-2000 Network Power Tee connectors have a male and female gender connector, just like all the other network tee connectors, but the MARETRON Network Power Tee connector has two female connectors. In this way there will be no exposed male pins that have the +12-Volt network power bus.

The use of two female gender connectors also means that at each end of a NMEA-2000 network using a MARETRON Network Power Tee connector the terminators will both be male gender.

The MARETRON Network Power Tee also splits the power to the network into two separate segments which are fed independently. This could be useful in larger vessels where the network might contain more devices and require more power to be supplied.

More information on the MARETRON Network Power Tee connector can be found here:

http://www.blueheronmarine.com/Maretron-NMEA-2000-Micro-Power-Cable-6212

andygere posted 03-07-2011 04:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
Good article Jim. As Steve notes, I came to the conclusion that the NMEA 2000 starter kit was the best deal on the LEI website since it comes with a variety of connectors and cables for essentially the same price as a 15 foot extension cable, which is included in the kit. Now if I can just decipher the wiring color code to get my Lowrance HDS-7 talking to my E-TEC network...
SJUAE posted 03-08-2011 02:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     
Andy

I was concerned that your older style NMAE2000 network was using the same port on the emm and would prevent you installing another newer version.

I thought if you could get 2 dropper cables one for each system and and splice the two cables together this would solve you problem other than they would probably charge USD20 for each cable :(

Regards
Steve

SJUAE posted 03-08-2011 03:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     
Andy

As always look at one of Jims old articles :)

http://continuouswave.com/ubb/Forum6/HTML/001294.html

Colour code from the reference article :


Lowrance cables are standard n2k color coded.
Red - Net-S
Black - Net-C
White - Net-H
Blue - Net-L
Clear - Drain

Regards
Steve

andygere posted 03-08-2011 07:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
Steve,
I guess what I'm trying to figure out is how that translates to the pin configuration on my I-Command NMEA 2000 hub. I've got to pull the literature for it and see that's revealed. Thanks for the info on the Lowrance side of things.
jimh posted 03-08-2011 08:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Andy--Look for the wiring insulation color code as a guide. The wire insulation color code seems to be the one consistent attribute of NMEA-2000 wiring components.
SJUAE posted 03-09-2011 03:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     
Andy

Are you thinking of splicing a tee into your existing backbone ? as I'm not sure if the power to your hub is only post the hub ie the hub may supply power to the network/guages but not back along the backbone where your T splice maybe

Regards
Steve

andygere posted 03-09-2011 04:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
Steve,
My plan was to use an open port on my hub to tie the backbone to the HDS-7. My understanding is that Jimh said that should work, however I will probably try to confirm that with BRP before I buy the cables. The idea is to use a LowranceNet Red cable, with one end cut off and spliced to a Deutsch connector to tap into the power hub of my I-Command NMEA 2000 system. As I understand it, the output ports on that hub should communicate with my HDS-7 as if it were any compliant gauge or instrument. I may be wrong about that, and I'm no expert at NMEA 2000, so any advice you or Jim have is welcomed. I did manage to install and configure the original I-Command system myself and get it all to work when I rigged my E-TEC, but the original system really was "plug and play".

In the configuration shown here: http://continuouswave.com/whaler/reference/NMEA2000/ iCommandSingle729x337.png I think the correct port would be the one labeled N2?

Jim,
I've got to pull the literature on my hub and see if the color code is indicated for the pins in the hub socket. The trick will be to configure the correct color wire from the LowranceNet Red cable to the correct pin on the spliced-in Deutsch connector. The hub is a sealed unit so I don't think I can get inside it to reveal the wire colors. I'm hoping there is a diagram in the literature. I suppose I can strip back the insulation on my tach harness and figure it out that way. When the boat comes back from the yard this week, I'll crawl inside the console and see what's what.

The new Lowrance HDS-7 just arrived and I can't wait to install it. It looks nice and the screen is so much bigger than what I'm used to. Thanks to both of you for the great tech info. There is terrific capability built into these outboards, gauge packages and instruments, but the documentation is a bit lacking, especially when the generations of technology evolve so quickly.

jimh posted 03-09-2011 11:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Andy--You certainly should be able to extend the network by connecting to the N2 port on your present hub.

I don't recall seeing the pin-out given for the early DEUTSCH connector hub, but if you can find a cable where you can see the wire insulation color, you should find there are only four conductors and a shield. The conductors should be paired red and black, blue and white.

Usually a DEUTSCH connector can be easily disassembled if you cannot see the individual conductors as they exit the back of the connector.

andygere posted 03-10-2011 01:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
Thanks for the great info. I'll post when I get the HDS-7 installed and the network set up.
seahorse posted 03-10-2011 07:59 AM ET (US)     Profile for seahorse  Send Email to seahorse     

TYPICAL 6 PIN Deutsch "CANBus” connector

1 - WHITE "CAN HI"

2 - WHITE "CAN LO"

3 - blank

4 - WHITE "NMEA +"

5 - WHITE "NMEA –"

6 - blank

There are adapter cables of various genders to fit the Deutsch NMEA 2000 connector to the blue connectors. I did not find any that adapt directly to the red connectors, but there are blue to red adapters, so you could use 2 adapters if you wanted.

jimh posted 03-10-2011 08:46 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
It sounds like the wiring is not using color-coded insulation.

I'd interpret that as follows: CAN HI and CAN LO refer to signal, while NMEA (+) and (-) refer to power polarity. You could verify that by checking with a voltmeter for the power conductors and perhaps putting a oscilloscope probe on the signal leads.

andygere posted 03-10-2011 11:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
quote:
There are adapter cables of various genders to fit the Deutsch NMEA 2000 connector to the blue connectors

Seahorse, can you tell me where I can buy a Deutsh to Lowrance Blue connector? The 2 connector system sounds like it would be the easiest and cleanest installation.

jimh posted 03-10-2011 11:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Andy--If you do get an adapter, perhaps you could map out the wiring connections so we could have it as a reference. I believe there are part numbers for the adapter cable, and if Seahorse doesn't post them I'll dig them up.
SJUAE posted 03-10-2011 02:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     
Andy

When I looked at the spare parts for the cable from your hub to the tach etc it was ridiculous at USD69

I think splicing a new drop cable in the tach harness to a new Tee would be cheaper and easier once we know the colour coding :)

The only old connector cables/parts I have seen were for an even older version of the I-Command that were more like a metal screwed Tee from a TV satilite system

There is a converter cable blue to red connectors but you have no need to go in that direction IMO

Regards
Steve

seahorse posted 03-10-2011 04:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for seahorse  Send Email to seahorse     

quote:

can you tell me where I can buy a Deutsh to Lowrance Blue connector?

Here is a link to the Evinrude adapter cables and part numbers:

http://www.etecownersgroup.com/post?id=5131953

SJUAE posted 03-11-2011 12:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     
Thanks Seahorse your right, they are all listed here

http://continuouswave.com/whaler/reference/BRP/ 353571_ICommandInstallationGuide.pdf

Regards
Steve

jimh posted 03-12-2011 12:46 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Steve--Thanks for the pointer to the reference material already posted here on CONTINUOUSWAVE. I appreciate that link.
jimh posted 03-12-2011 12:47 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Seahorse--Thanks for the pointer to the part numbers for the various DEUTECH to Lowrance Blue connectors. Much appreciated.
andygere posted 03-21-2011 12:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
My input to this discussion has elements also covered in another thread. My apologies for the fragmentation and thread hopping. Here's a pointer to the other thread where I've continued the conversation: http://continuouswave.com/ubb/Forum6/HTML/002784.html
SJUAE posted 03-21-2011 02:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     
Andy

Replied to your other thread :)

Personally I think I de-railed this my appols and Seahorse put us right we were so busy looking at the Lowrance and other suppliers cables we forgot to look at Evinrude cables for your problem, silly as the answer was under our noses.

Regards
Steve

kwik_wurk posted 03-22-2011 11:29 AM ET (US)     Profile for kwik_wurk  Send Email to kwik_wurk     
Has anyone found low cost [field installable DeviceNET] connectors [other than the ones from] Garmin and others? I found the $30 list price for these to be off the chart. Obviously they don't want customers making their own cable runs and assembling connectors.

https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?pID=11643

The price of the NEMA backbone cables is a little rich, especially when you can get the proper Belden cable rather easily (and cost effectively) in most places.

jimh posted 03-22-2011 07:42 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Follow the hyperlink I gave above to a listing of MARETRON wiring devices. They have field-installable connectors for about $15.

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