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Bob Mueller

Bennett NMEA 2000 Trim Tab Indicator Kit does not work with Garmin NMEA 2000

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I just installed the Bennett NMEA 2000 Trim Tab Indicator Kit. Install was quite simple. However, the trim tab position is not displaying on my Garmin GMI 10. I called Bennett to see if they can help me. They tell me that Garmin does not play nice with others and that the Bennet NMEA 2000 adapter will never work with Garmin. He told me that the sending units that I installed in the tab pistons are working fine, but I must connect them up to a Garmin GBT 10, instead of the Bennett NMEA 2000 adapter that was included in the kit. I don't know for sure if it's Garmin or Bennett, but this is frustrating! Does anyone know whether this is Garmin or Bennett? BTW, I am pretty sure that Bennett's NMEA 2000 adapter is made by Lowrance. My GMI 10 is detecting a Lowrance Trim Tab indicator on the NMEA 2000 network.

7 Replies

  • That sucks, Bob! I don't know who is at fault but I do know that the Garmin GMI 10 generally does quite well with somewhat less common PGNs coming from third party sources. For instance, it shows the rudder angle coming from my boat's Simrad autopilot while a Furuno RD-33 won't. There are some values like rudder angle and outdoor temperature that are included in more than one standard N2K PGN, which may account for screw ups like yours. I don't know why Garmin can't add another definition, though.

  • I'm dealing with the same issue, and everyone is fuzzy on the subject. The device is listed as a "Lowrance Trim Tab 7" software version 1.6.0 with a serial number #7. Garmin says the PGN's for trim tabs, and calibration are enabled, but the calibration feature does not appear for this device. I suspect it's like some of the Lowrance N2K engine interfaces where you need to have one of their MFD's to do the calibration. My best guess at this point is that although Lowrance/Bennett's EP-30 (if this is actually the same thing) is certified, you need more that only Lowrance has. I'm doing some more digging, and will provide any feedback I get.

  • Bob, it's a bit of both. The Garmin's (at least at current software levels do read PGN 130576 (Small craft status). So as I have discovered, the Garmin will read the Bennett trim tab position. Trim tab position appears on the engine pages that only appear if you have engine data. Otherwise you can access it on a data bar. Config/Chart/Menu/Data Bars/ ie cruising... It will appear as a numeric value. Although Garmin does not have a calibration specifically for the Bennett system, it does seem to operate adequately as installed. The Garmin GBT 10 does have a calibration utility. NMEA lists the Lowrance EP=30 as certified, but Lowrance has discontinued this item, and I don't know what the certification status of the Bennett device is.

  • I have a Lowrance HDS10 Gen 2..brabd new replacement of my HDS10 Gen 1. They replaced it because they found an issue with teh same item. I spent 30 days with Bennett on the tabs not calibrating correctly last December...then rhey sent me to Lowrance who claimed it was Bennetts problem. After 30 days with Lowrance via phone and email I sent my unit in and they sent me back a new one. After all of this I am still having issues. The "insect" or A to D converter doesn't show up properly in the device list. The serial number for it is all screwed weird ascii characters.

    The tabs do work but the display on the screen is messed up AND it is messing up all my other data overlays on the screen. When I power down the HDS and then power it up, all of my data overlay items convert to being trim tab indicators..IE my clock, depth, wtaer temp etc. all become trim tab indicators in digital format. VERY frustrating!

    I have an email into bennett again and we will see what they say. Probably more finger pointing!!!

  • Bill, ask Bennett whose N2K interface they are using? Get them to be specific. They don't make one, at least one that is certified.

  • I went through this exact runaround two years ago - unless you know how to create and/or modify your own PGN's, you might as well give up. The fact that the Lowrance product is obsolete with no support doesn't help. I ended up returning the Bennett kit and exchanging it for one that didn't include the "supposed" NMEA2000 capability - and then bought the Garmin GBT10. It installed fine, calibrated, and displays perfectly on the GMI10.
    For a couple hundred bucks, it's not worth trying to re-engineer the Bennett/Lowrance unit. Chalk it up to one more example of N2K 'sort-of" compatibility...

  • After reading all this I bought and installed a GBT-10.

    I had a small issue: I needed to retract tabs BEFORE switching on N2k bus. Otherwise tab status was not displayed until I retracted tabs.

    The second issue is much worse: GBT-10 does not work at all if I have my Raymarine P70R autopilot controller connected to the bus. It´s still on the device list but calibration menu is gone and tab position is not reported anymore.