Feb 13, 2018

Optimus 360SeaStar Solutions, the global leader in marine steering and electronic control technology, has announced the availability of its acclaimed Optimus 360 joystick docking and control system for Mercury® Verado™ six-cylinder digital throttle and shift outboards.

Now, owners of Verado outboards can enjoy the benefits of SeaStar Optimus 360 joystick control technology for close quarter maneuvering, as well as Optimus EPS (Electronic Power Steering), SeaStation GPS Anchoring and SeaWays Autopilot capabilities.

“Last year, we introduced our Optimus EPS electronic power steering for Verado outboards,” said Tom Douglass, vice president of sales and marketing for SeaStar Solutions. “Now, for the first time, we are able to offer our complete suite of Optimus Solutions to Verado owners.”

The Optimus 360 system will provide complete multi-directional joystick control of any vessel with twin or triple Verado outboard installations. (The quad Verado Optimus 360 joystick control will follow in the summer.) Low speed diagonal, sideways, forward and reverse movements are controlled by the simple and intuitive movement of the joystick. An exclusive “boost” mode provides added thrust to overcome strong wind or current.

The Optimus 360 system also includes Optimus EPS power steering. In addition to making steering easier while underway, Optimus EPS’ speed adaptive feature allows lock-to-lock turn ratios to be programmed to match engine rpm. For example, when running at cruising speeds the steering can be set to eight turns lock-to-lock, so minor movements of the wheel won’t translate into significant changes in course. When operating at lower speeds, the lock-to-lock ratio can be set to as low as 3.5 turns, and steering effort can be further eased to aid when maneuvering in tight spaces.

Because Optimus employs an “on demand” pump system, skippers will realize an immediate power savings, limited pump heat generation and improved durability.

Integrated GPS Anchoring and Autopilot Systems Are Now Available

SeaStar Solutions has recently added two new capabilities to its Optimus 360 system: SeaStation GPS Anchoring and SeaWays Autopilot systems. Verado owners can now have these capabilities added when installing Optimus 360.

The SeaStation system was designed with anglers in mind. It offers three modes: 1) Heading Only, 2) Position Only, and 3) Heading and Position. Heading and Position mode is designed to hold the boat in a specific position; waiting for a bridge to open, for example. Position Only mode keeps the boat over a spot while allowing it to find its natural heading with wind or current. For kite or drift fishing, Heading Only mode maintains a set heading while allowing the boat to drift with the current or tide. In these modes, SeaStation uses minimal throttle and shift adjustments to maintain position.

Like SeaStation, SeaWays Autopilot takes full advantage of the existing Optimus 360 systems, including the onboard pump control module, hydraulic pumps and CANtrak display. Installation of additional pumps and other hardware is not necessary.

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