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Marine radio antenna question.


Cliff Wagenbach

Question

I am thinking of putting a marine radio in by boat, but do not like the very large antennas that I have seen on a lot of boats.

I only need reception for about a 10 mile range.

Will one of the shorter antennas that are available work for me? If so, what one would you suggest.

Thanks for any suggestions! smile.gif

Cliff

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Shakespear 5240 should do the trick for ya. I think they are only 36" long and if 10 miles is all ya need that should do the trick. I would call Marine General and ask for Russ, Josh or Justin. They will know what will work best for ya and have some of the best electronics prices around. Show specials are now coming up so you may be able to save a few bucks as well.

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Calculation for Range of an Antenna:

Square Root of Height (in feet) above water x 1.42 = Range in miles

Remember to perform the calculation for BOTH vessels, and then add the results for the range between two vessels

For Example, Say you have a three foot antenna mounted three feet above the waterline. It would be 2.45 (3'antenna +3' above waterline= 6, Square root of 6 is 2.45 )x 1.42=3.48 mile range. If the boat that you were talking to was set up identical youcould talk to each other 6.98 miles apart.

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Make sure you soder the antenna wire to the connector... It will help tremendously.

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Thanks for the quick responses guys! laugh.gif

I was hoping the 36" antenna would work.

Sounds like I may be able to use it!

Cliff

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Height of the antenna is the most important factor for range (assuming you've got good connections, no interference with your electronics, etc). Islands, trees, rocks, buildings, weather conditions, etc. will usually work to decrease your range. Most of the people I know that had the 3 foot whip antennas have changed to 8 footers, including me. Doesn't do you much good to have a radio if you can't reach anyone with it. Good luck.

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I thought I might also hear your view that a longer antenna would be my best choice! frown.gif

Probably why most boats have the 8 footers.

I am fishing mostly open water on Vermilion's Big Bay.

Thanks!

Cliff

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If you go with the 3 foot wire antenna and expect to reach 10 miles with it you are going to be dissapointed.

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Cliff call Russ and he will let ya know for sure and point you to the right choice. I agree the 8' solid is best and to solder it but in your case if you dont want it than you should be able to find something that will take care of you on Vermillion.

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Thanks again guys!

Guess I will have to call Russ to make sure I am not wasting my money!

Cliff

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Who are you going to talk to? I thought VHF fixed base was commercial only according to the law. Just wondering, as I was looking in to it last spring.

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Northlander suggested that I talk to Russ at Marine General.

He would know just what I will need for an antenna on Vermilion.

Cliff

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Quote:

Who are you going to talk to? I thought VHF fixed base was commercial only according to the law. Just wondering, as I was looking in to it last spring.


I don't think so, where did you find this information ?

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Anybody have opinions on where to mount the antenna? I purchased a radio and 8footer last fall but haven't installed yet. Debating between the back corner passenger side vs across from the counsel passenger side. Trying to decide which will be less intrusive to fishing comfort. This is on a Mr. Pike 16

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Sgt. Rock, I prefer it on the drivers side,just ahead of the windshield, but I do alot of drift fishing with the rod out the passenger side, my feet up on the passengers seat and relaxing while fishing. Also, it's usually out of the way when trolling too. With the antenna in the back, this can be an issue. Especially when it comes netting time! There doesn't seem to be a clear cut answer, just depends how you fish.

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Quote:

Quote:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Who are you going to talk to? I thought VHF fixed base was commercial only according to the law. Just wondering, as I was looking in to it last spring.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I don't think so, where did you find this information ?


Agree with delcecchi, if you use a marine vhf on land (ie. from a fixed base like a marina or harbor) you need to be licensed. There was a story last year about some guy that got nailed for using a VHF from his home or cabin near the lake to talk to boaters.

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I originally got it off rec.boats.electronics newsgroup. But a search turned up the following from fcc.gov

Coast Stations

Land stations in the marine services are the links between vessels at sea and activities ashore. They are spread throughout the coastal and inland areas of the United States to carry radio signals and messages to and from ships on the water. These stations are generally characterized by the services they provide:

* Public coast stations connect marine radios with the public switched telephone network. These stations are commonly know as "marine operators." VHF band (156-162 MHz) public coast stations provide short-range communications for vessels not more than 30 nautical miles from shore. High seas band (2-27.5 MHz) public coast stations serve vessels far from shore. Some high seas stations can even serve vessels thousands of miles from land. Public coast stations are common carriers, and thus charge a fee for providing, voice, telex, fax, or data transmission services. Nevertheless, public coast stations provide a vital public service as they are reach well beyond the limits of terrestrial radio systems and are required by statute to relay distress messages free of charge.

* Automated Maritime Telecommunications System (AMTS) stations are a special type of public coast station operating in the 216-220 MHz band. AMTS stations are licensed to provide coverage over an entire inland waterway or a substantial portion of an ocean coastline.

* Private coast stations are not common carriers -- they cannot charge for communications services. Instead, they provide information to associated vessels. Only those entities that provide some sort of service to vessels or control a bridge or waterway may become a private coast station licensee. Some common uses of private coast stations include: marinas, radio repair shops, bridges, locks, and yacht clubs.

* Alaska public fixed stations provide communications for safety and public correspondence like public coast stations, but they serve Alaskan communities exclusively.

* Radar stations on land are used mostly to locate and track vessels in coastal and inland waters. Some radars also serve as navigational fixes for vessels in their range.

* Radiobeacons emit a constant radio signal from fixed locations on land, like lighthouses, or from buoys in the water, for navigational reference.

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A VHF in your house doesn't fit any of those things.

So it looks to me like legally you can't use a VHF to do what you want. CB ok. VHF no.

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Its going on a boat. Not a house! I'm guessing resorts could also have one, if they were selling gas etc. Could be a real safety thing on someplace like LOW.

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