Hi, I'm Peter... Yacht Racing System


I’m Peter, and I’m a retured mathematician and a keen sailor - skipper of a classic racing yacht - Firebrand - in Hamble (not far from here).

You would not beleive how much custom engineering and electronics goes into sailing yachts. Any sailors here… please feel free to make contact and come take a look. Firebrand’s facebook name is Firebrand Hamble - a few pics there.

I actually found MakerSpace because Chris at Oshug suggested that Alan Wood might be able to help with Firebrand’s instruments, but I had a devil of a job finding him.

Those instruments are my main project right now. The system as a whole consusts of a network of Pi 5s connected by Canbus, which is the hardware underlying NMEA 2000, which in turn is a marine power and data protocol that enables the sensors to operate and all the bits to talk to eachother.

Each display is enclosed in a waterproof enslosure with a high-viz (max 2000 cd/m2 brightness) HDMI screen driven off the Pi 5. We use a websocket implematation and an instance of Chrome to create the actual display on each screen. It’s slightly perverse - Chrome (the client) is running on the same Pi as the server, but it’s very flexible, device and OS independant, and it works well.

Cooling is always a serious issue in a watertight case, and there are bits of electonics also. Quite an interesting project overall…