If you find these controls useful, please donate $ to encourage me to finish the project. Thank you.

The Control Suite

Original user controls by David Rice for the Microsoft Visual Studio suite. One may write to me at NMEASage @ gmail. com

After over 48,000 downloads I have received only 16 emails thanking me for making these ActiveX controls freely available; therefore I have not finished the project.

NOTICE: This software is available AS-IS: no claim is made, nor implied, that this software is error free; no claim is made, nor implied, that you will be able to use this software safely. This software, as in all other aids to navigation, must never be substituted for safe and effective boating habits. The safe handling of you, your passengers, and your vessle remain 100% your responsibility and is not, and must not be, predicated upon this or any other software.

OCX Download URLs:
Banded Compass Control
Goto Control
Satellite Heath Control
Standard Compass
Satellite Elevation Control
Groundspeed Control
NMEA Sage Talker Control
North Bearing Compass
GPS Position control
Engine RPM Control
Rudder Angle Control
Set and Drift Control
Water Control
Wind Control
Cross-Track Error Control
Pilot Control
Waypoint Plotter Control
Radar Control
Simple Goto Control
Stars Control
Garmin Basics Control
GPS Date And Time Control
Set And Drift Report
Rate Of Turn Control
Water Temperature Control
True Heading / Magnetic Heading
Magnetic Deviation Control
Lat / Lon Display Control
Bearing To Waypoint Control
Waypoint-to-Waypoint Control
Waypoint Arrival Control

Sample VB Project
USA Topographic Databases

The How to use these controls page. These controls allow Microsoft Visual Studio programmers to implement some NMEA 0183 functionality into their applications. These are ActiveX controls which means they will work in Microsoft Access, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word, and Microsoft Internet Explorer via these application's VBA interfaces; of course they will also work in Microsoft Visual BASIC, Microsoft Visual C++, and other applications.
Download NMEATalker.ocx Visual Studio Control
Download NMEATalk.dll Visual Studio .NET Version
Download Visuals BASIC 6.0 demo program

The NMEA Talker Control listens to the NMEA data stream. When data is heard on the NMEA wire, the control triggers a specific event depending on the NMEA sentence heard.

This control is invisible at run-time.

Download Waypoint.ocx Visual Studio Control

The NMEA Sage Waypoint Plotter Control will accept many thousands of waypoints and plot them onto a fully resizable viewport. It will handle any ocean, and the viewport may span any distance from a few hundred feet up to 12,000 miles or so. Distances may be calculated in Nautical Miles, Standard (Imperial) Miles, or Kilometers. It does *NOT* accept any NMEA sentences.

Download Position.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Position Control complies with the NMEA sentence protocol $xxRMC [Recommended Minimum Navigation Information] and the Garmin proprietary sentence $GPRMZ [Altitude Information]. Almost everything about this control is configurable by you (the programmer); display options are built into the control for the end user to specify formats for date and time and latitide and longitude. The control is completely resizable.

NOTICE: There was a program bug in this control, discovered Oct 13 2007. It was fixed and the fix is available (see URL link above) for downloading.

Download GPSSat.ocx Visual Studio Control

The GPS Satellite Health Control shows the state of the GPS Satellites in the sky: their elevation, azimuth, and decibel levels. Satellites may be added to the control by merely passing the correct NMEA sentences to it, or "manually." The control may also be set to automatically remove satellites if the signal strength of any given satellite falls below a specificed value. The control is fully resizable, and offers three different satellite symbols. Signal strength bars at the bottom of the control may be turned off or on, and other visual componants may be modified by the programmer.

Download GPSSatellite2.ocx Visual Studio Control

The GPS Satellite Elevation Control. This control shows the elevations of the GPS satellites within view, with the horizon at the bottom and zenith (90 degrees) at the top. The higher the satellite is in this image, the higher it is in the sky.

Download GPSCompass.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Compass Control behaves like a "regular" compass: the center line stays pointing forward and the compass card spins under it. You may specify many different options to modify how the compass looks and behaves by setting the control's Properties.

Download NorthCompass.ocx Visual Studio Control

The North Biased Compass Control. Unlike a compass in the real world, a north-biased compass has a fixed card and a moving needle. Therefore this control is useful for showing bearings instead of headings. You may set the control's Properties to change the colors of the tick marks, the length of the tick marks, the style of the indicator (line or dot), and of course also use the Night Property or Twilight Property.

Download GPSGoto.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Goto Control conforms to the NMEA $..RMB sentence [Recommended Minimum Navigation Information] via the RMB Method. One must also use the Property cHeading to tell the control the current heading (denoted as "Track" on the control), or use the HDT Method via the NMEA sentence $..HDT [Heading True].

The indicator shows the desired direction to the waypoint; the compass card's top shows the heading (track) the boat is currently on. In this example, the boat is heading South-east (133 degrees), and the waypoint is at 120 degrees: we are off course.

At the bottom of the control shows the Cross Track error (XTE). If the Cross Track Error line is on the right side of the center line, one must steer left to get back on course. The maximum value for XTE is 9.9; the center line is the decimal point for the XTE number (in this example, 1.4 is the XTE number).

Download Wind.ocx Visual Studio Control.
Go to the Wind Control Demo web page.

The Wind Control shows the angle of the wind and the speed of the wind. Wind angles may be set as "Relative" or "True," and the valid speed units are (K) "Knots," (M) "Miles per Hour," and (N) "Meters per Second." This conforms to the NMEA $..MWV sentence, which means this control will accept NMEA sentences via the MWV Method. One may also use several Properties to specify wind angle WindAngle, wind speed WindSpeed, the speed unit being used SpeedStandard, and if the wind angle is true or relative Relative.

Download Rudder.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Rudder Control matches the NMEA sentence $..RSA and shows the angle of the rudder sensor on the rudder (the starboard rudder in dual systems). You may pass the NMEA sentence to the control via the RSA Method, or use the RudderAngle Property.

Download BandCompass.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Banded Compass Control is fully resizable, and the internal components have several options for placement and removal. You may have a control span from 6 to 359 degrees (the default is shown here at 60 degrees).

Download XTE.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Cross Track Alarm Control is a subset of The Goto Control and it conforms to the NMEA $..RMB sentence [Recommended Minimum Navigation Information] via the RMB Method. It triggers an Event when the XTE is equal to or greater than a specifed number of nautical miles.

Download Water.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Depth and Water Temperature Control accepts four NMEA sentences: $..DBK (Depth Below Keel); $..DBS (Depth Below Surface); $..DBT (Depth below transducer); and $..MTW (Water Temperature). The control automatically converts temperature and depth units.

Download RPM.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Engine RPM Control accepts NMEA sentences via the RPM Method. This NMEA sentence includes the engine number, revolutions per minute, propeller pitch, and a flag that denotes if the data is valid or not.

Download GroundSpeed.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Course and Speed (Ground). This control accepts NMEA sentences RMA, RMV, and VTG via the RMA, RMC, and VTG Methods. The VTG Method will accept both the old and new NMEA Standard format. The control displays either Magnetic and True course, and speed in either Knots, Miles Per Hour, or Killometers Per Hour.

Download SetDrift.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Set and Drift control. The Set-and-Drift control plots the cumulative effects of current, leeway, and poor steering: the cumulative effect of these forces causes a boat to travel off the desired course and retards or augments the boat's true speed (that is, speed over the ground instead of through the water). The direction that effect moves the boat is called "set;" the force applied against the boat, expressed in knots, is the "drift."

Download Pilot.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Pilot control. The NMEA Sage Pilot ActiveX Control conforms to the NMEA $..APA and $..APB sentences [Autopilot Sentence "A" and the newer Autopilot Sentence "B"] via the APA and APB Methods. This will show Cross Tract Error (XTE), the waypoint name, bearing to waypoint, heading of vessel, and other piloting information. One may also ignore these two Methods and set the control's Properties with similar data.

Download Radar.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Radar Control. The control's Properties match the NMEA RSD sentence via the RSD Method. One therefore may use either the RSD Method or several Properties with this control. One may use various other Methods to add radar targets (the AddTarget Method), remove targets (the DelTarget Method), and to remove all targets (the ClsTargets Method). One may use the control without any targets, of course.

Download GotoSimple.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Goto Simple Control is a simplified version of the bigger NMEA Sage Goto control. It accepts the RMB NMEA sentence.

Download Stars.ocx Visual Studio Control

The Stars Control is my attempt to incorporate a star database into an ActiveX control, using an internal database of over 2,700 stars. Based on a theme by Jeremiah Hughes.

The Garmin Basics Control.