Onwa KAP-866 Autopilot

Sold out -= new stock due 1st week in February

For motor or hydraulic steering systems. Manufactured for small commercial vessels so built for tough environments but suitable for leisure craft as well, this is a robust unit that will provide accurate and safe automatic steering.

For NECO owners – this is the perfect replacement for your old Neco steering controller. We have step by step instructions from a Neco expert with schematics and diagrams.

Neco is a motor driven steering system produced at a time when computerised plotters were not available for small boat owners.


Available on back-order

Your solution for a new auto pilot installation or to replace faulty or old technology controllers in old autopilot systems where the rudder driving mechanism is still 100% sound. Able to control a motor or pump with loads up to 50 amp (100 amp on 24 volt systems) via LSD-50P-100FID high current FET switch or for light loads can switch directly into a maximum 10-amp load. The KAP-866 Pilot will operate on 12volt or 24volt systems. Can be used on motor driven or hydraulic systems.

The design of the KAP866 pilot lends itself ideally to fit into older systems e.g NECO, where the mechanical drive components of the system are excellent, but the old technology controller is either faulty or simply uses technology that isn’t up to today’s performance levels. Many of our auto pilots  have been sold to and installed by ordinary boat owners without specialist knowledge who have successfully installed the pilot themselves; we have lots of help available if you need guidance with the installation.

As supplied, they come with a rudder feedback unit and a 9-Axis electronic heading sensor. The heading sensor is a device similar to a fluxgate compass but more sophisticated that provides the position and heading information. The only other item you may need (depending on your drive system) is an Onwa DC power module. You might need this for systems that consume more than 10 amps and for situations where the drive motor or pump (if hydraulic) requires automatic reversal. The heading sensor features a GPS/Glonass receiver coupled with a 9-axis AHRS unit providing 3D orientation by integrating gyroscopes and data fusing with accelerometers and magnetometers – in plain English…..a super high tech’ electronic compass. There are various settings that allow the pilot to perform well in most sea and weather conditions. We have sold five of these to the Falkland Islands and users there report that they work well in the harsh environment of the South Atlantic.

One Caveat: the Pilot controller is not water protected and is intended to be used in a wheelhouse. A cable connected remote is available but again this is not water protected.Onwa power module and connection diagram


There is a KAP866 video on you tube by one of our customers, Roger Gaspar. This first part of the video describes the functions of the Auto Pilot followed by actual use at sea accurately following a very complicated course entirely automatically under the control of the authors KM12X chart plotter.

KAP 866 functions and in useRoger Gaspar


Our customer, Roger Gasper, is the well known author of Crossing The Thames Estuary which is a must have reference book for anyone who uses the Estuary. Roger is an immensely experienced mariner and has been a Thames Estuary surveyor for many years. If you want to avoid any possibility of grounding on the many Estuary sandbanks and cross the Estuary by the fastest, safest route, follow Roger’s precise routes and tidal calculations.

Here is a link to Roger Gasper’s excellent book.

Roger's book






Available on back-order

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