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VHF radio in the cockpit

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Gunnar View Drop Down
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    Posted: 06 January 2006 at 17:22

On my previous boats, I've had a VHF radio set mounted downstairs by the chart table. I've only been halfway satisfied with this solution, as it gets unpractical to steer and communicate at the same time.

For my new boat, I would rather prefer the VHF to be mounted in the cockpit, if possible. Nowdays, VHF radios are claimed to be waterproof, but are they really 365 days a year weatherproof? Or, would it be possible to mount it on e.g. the wheel pedestal by some sort of snap on/snap off fixture? Anyone who has done this already?

Best regards, Gunnar H342#350

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silversailor View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote silversailor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 January 2006 at 02:06
On a prior boat I installed a  Standard Horizon below, with a second  handset at the helm.  It worked great.  I'm going to do the same for my new  370e, but I've chosen an Icom VHF.  The hanset can completely control the VHF and is waterproof.
Silversailor
South Haven, MI USA
S/V Legacy
Hanse 370e, #9
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franko View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 January 2006 at 09:12

Gunnar,

Like SilverSailor I have an Icom downstairs with a handset (CommandoMic I think they call it)at the wheel. Works great. Mic has an adequate speaker built in but you could also fit an external speaker.

At last year's Miami Boat Show I was impressed by a new Uniden model with loud-hailer, programmed fog signals, WHAM mike etc. Worth considering, well priced. Sorrry, forget the model number.

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John Allison View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote John Allison Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 January 2006 at 13:11

Hi Gunnar,

Have done same with Simrad VHF on past yacht but found it better all this time to go with a hand held VHF both as back up and for use when in cockpit.

I find I need to use a radio from the cockpit usually when entering marinas or in close contact with other vessels - so range has never proved to be a problem - and as stated its good to have a hand held for both backup and when I'm ashore and leave others on boat.

Usually cheaper too.

Cheers

JOHN

No longer a Hanse owner - but loved the one we had!
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silversailor View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote silversailor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 January 2006 at 14:58
The problem with a handheld is that it has limited power.  It's fine for inside a marina but of little use in an emergency. I use my handheld as a back up and in the dinghy.  However, I really like a full power mike at the helm.  The only cost $100-150, and well worth it, whether you chose Standard Horizon or Icom.  Uniden now has a wireless mike, but I don't know how good it is.
Silversailor
South Haven, MI USA
S/V Legacy
Hanse 370e, #9
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JofB View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JofB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 January 2006 at 18:41

The new Simrad Remote Commander shown at the London Boat Show and coming out in March provides a wireless handset to work with the main VHF as well as giving repeater displays of all data and control of most equipment on a Simnet, including AP.  Apparently the wireless handset has been successfully used 100m and more from the base station and it also acts as an intercom.

Could be worth a look for those with Simrad kit?

Jof
400e #31 - Grey Goose
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Gunnar View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gunnar Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 February 2006 at 13:08

Thanks a lot for good advice! Seems to me that a solution with a base station below and a second handset at the helm is the most common for sailboats.

Come so far, I have started to think about how to install the VHF by the chart table. Should I cut a hole in the hatch where the electric panel is located, or do I have to mount it in the fixed wall beside it? (That means, horror, horror, to do something I cannot regret...) I would be very happy to see pictures of other VHF installations, just to get an idea how it can be done!

Best regards, Gunnar (342#350)



Edited by Gunnar - 01 February 2006 at 13:09
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silversailor View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote silversailor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 February 2006 at 14:44
Thanks for the info on the Simrad.  I think it may be a rebadged Icom.  In any event, I'll look at it at the upcoming Miami Sailboat Show beginning 2/16.
Silversailor
South Haven, MI USA
S/V Legacy
Hanse 370e, #9
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JofB View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JofB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 February 2006 at 18:00

Hi Silversailor,

having spoken to one of the Simrad guys responsible for developing it at the London show, he was very proud of it and I think he would be most upset to see a suggestion that it was only a rebadge! 

I am sure it is a dedicated Simrad product and looks the business in terms of versatility and portability.

Jof
400e #31 - Grey Goose
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silversailor View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote silversailor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 February 2006 at 15:02
Jof, Hope I didn't upset the Simrad rep to much.  I'm sure he'll recover.  The issue as to where to mount the VHF is also applicable to my 370.  I've decided to mount it at the top of the right hand portion of the instrument cabinet, behind the glass.  If I feel that opening the glass to access the VHF is not a comfortable arrangement I can drill an access whole or slot for the VHF's mic and mount the mic outside of the cabinet.
Alternatively, I could change the hinges so that the glass doors would be removable when sailing.

Any other suggestions?
Silversailor
South Haven, MI USA
S/V Legacy
Hanse 370e, #9
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