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Old 05-09-2017, 11:58 AM
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Jolene Jolene is offline
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Default Marine Antenna Suggestions

Okay since i have to take the boat in to get the steering tightened, I'll have them install the new bow cleat. I might as well add the marine radio. Unfortunately the antenna that was available to me broke on the ride home (at least the tip was broke off). Does that matter or what would you all recommend for an antenna.

Its primary need would be when cove camping on the Lake Mohave - part of the Colorado River (between Las Vegas and Laughlin)?

TIA,
Jolene
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Old 05-10-2017, 12:10 AM
Gotwater Gotwater is offline
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Default Hello, JOLENE

Questions
#1 Do you have a regular radio
#2 Is it a marine VHF radio
#3 How much do you know about marine VHF radios and antennas
#4 Fixed mount radio

Start here: Google West Marine - Advice how marine vhf radios and antennas
Go to Electronics - Selecting a VHF antenna and read Fixed mount VHF radios
I have and 8' Shakespeare not sure of the number
Now they have a QC-8 Quick Connect VHF 8' antenna
Not sure about the VHF antenna, on CB radios they say the last couple of inches is what transmits the signal.
Things you need to figure out, the best placement, out of the way, not a trip hazard, blocking your way or will it get broken easy.

When you have time give me a call.

TERRY and BETTY GOTWATER

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Old 05-10-2017, 09:56 AM
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Thanks Terry I'll definitely give you a call. From what I remember it's a marine cb radio that we took off the boat my sister purchased. I also got a long antenna but it was clearly longer than my truck bed and the tip was broken off at some point during the trip. Been battling bronchitis so if I'm up for it I'll call tonight if not I'll call you this weekend.
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Old 05-10-2017, 12:13 PM
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My comments are about a VHF radio, not a CB. The principle is the same for either though the actual antennas may be different. For my Seafair Sunliner, I chose to use a 3 db stainless steel whip antenna mounted relatively low near the top of the windshield. The reason is simplicity, ruggedness, ease of lowering it, and stowability. The particular SS whip I am using has a Quick Connect (bayonet) fitting so the antenna itself can be removed from the base with just a twist. When the antenna is installed, it will fit under the Bimini top. When removed, the antenna can be stored in a compartment, leaving the topside without any projections to interfere with a canvas whole boat cover. The range of any antenna is dependent on height. From the West Marine range table, my antenna height of 5 feet and a similar height fixed receiving antenna (or handheld) would be about five miles assuming no obstructions are in the way to block it. A taller antenna or a short one mounted higher would extend that range. However, 5 miles seems adequate for the locations where we go boating.

-JRF (Jerry)

note: in the attached picture, the antenna is located just in front of the port side console, next to the port side windshield.
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Old 05-11-2017, 12:08 AM
Gotwater Gotwater is offline
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Default Jrf, hello

I agree with you 100% about the short SS steel whip with a quick connect fitting, simplicity, ruggedness and stowability can't beat that. My 8' foot antenna does get in the way sometimes and I just replaced-my original one after some 25 years. It had taken a beating over the years bouncing in a 16 foot boat. I picked an 8' far as spending so much time out in the ocean.
When we lived in the LA area about 20 miles inland I could talk to one of our friends that had a sailboat docked in San Pedro. Down here in SD we are 24 miles inland and I can be cleaning the boat and listen to everything going on channel 16.
There is a differents between the two VHF and CB antennas but I don't remember what it is, need to read up on that again.
Funny thing is I have been playing with CBs mobil and base stations for 27 years and have one on right now.
On the Delta run I checked out your antenna and even told Betty take a look at how that is mounted and the location.

TERRY and BETTY GOTWATER

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Old 05-11-2017, 07:55 AM
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Hey Terry, thanks for the comments. I have used 8 foot fiberglass antennas on other boats. For travel off shore, I agree that is the best rig. My Sunliner even had two of them on it when I got the boat as it was used for fishing off Monterey Bay. We once owned a sailboat with a 3 db SS whip on top of a 30 foot mast. With that little antenna at that height we could easily communicate with the Marine Operator at least 30 miles away. These days, I am only figuring on travel in sheltered waters and not off shore by any significant amount so the little SS whip works fine. CB antennas operate at different frequencies from VHF. There may not be the same antenna choices available, but size and height are still the factors that determine range.

-JRF (Jerry)
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Old 05-11-2017, 04:35 PM
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Seems I've learned something but don't really know what it is - yet! lol I thought a marine radio, CB, VHF were one of the same??

Where I intend to use this the most is at the river, VERY mountain-ee so good reception is the key. Just to use our cell phones we often have to climb the highest mountain around us and stand in a funny position to get any reception.
I case of an emergency I'd prefer accessing something closer and handy, like in my boat! I've seen handhelds but it seems they require a monthly or annual service fee??

My daughter and I often camp alone. It's getting harder and harder to find folks interested in primitive camping.

Photo attached is the unit I have, is this sufficient or should I be looking at something else? I don't recall seeing any antennas on the boats rented out from the marina??

TIA
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20170510_195626.jpg  
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Old 05-11-2017, 11:27 PM
Gotwater Gotwater is offline
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Default Jrf

OH, I remember the Marine Operator. Up in the LA area I had a Radio Shack Scanner and spent many late nights listening to the in coming calls from boats out at sea, really interesting as to what you hear.

TERRY and BETTY GOTWATER

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Old 05-12-2017, 09:34 AM
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Jolene, your radio is a VHF marine type so everything we have said about antennas definitely applies. For max range, use a VHF 6 db antenna (8 foot). Note: 9 db antennas are going to be too big for your boat. However, the caveat with any high frequency radio like VHF is it's line-of-sight. If there is any obstruction (like a hill, a building or even just the banks of the river) between you and the receiver, the signal will be blocked. On inland waters, there are often too many obstructions for a high gain antenna to be really useful IMHO. But sometimes it will work when you might not think it would; so all I will say is "you pays your money and you takes your chances".

-JRF (Jerry)
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