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VHF radio advice

Posted by Tillerman53 
VHF radio advice
01 February, 2018 20:56
Hi all,
Finally getting around to buying a VHF transceiver for my barge. Budget allows for about €300. Any recommendations, experience, advice welcome.
Thanks guys,

Tm53
Re: VHF radio advice
01 February, 2018 21:08
Quote:
Tillerman53
Hi all,
Finally getting around to buying a VHF transceiver for my barge. Budget allows for about €300. Any recommendations, experience, advice welcome.
Thanks guys,

Dawkins forgive me Tillerman but you will get a license (Ship's and Operator's) first?

John
Yacht "Stickler"
Re: VHF radio advice
01 February, 2018 21:12
Roger that, Stickler, a big 10-4. Over.....
See ?? I've been practising..

Tm53
Re: VHF radio advice
01 February, 2018 21:17
Quote:
Tillerman53
Roger that, Stickler, a big 10-4. Over.....
See ?? I've been practising..

Over and Out..

smiling smiley



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/02/2018 21:19 by John.Kinsella1.
Re: VHF radio advice
02 February, 2018 09:19
Over and out doesn't make any sense John, surely its one or the other.the finger smiley
Re: VHF radio advice
02 February, 2018 09:28
I can see this is going to take a while.......

Tm53
Re: VHF radio advice
02 February, 2018 09:50
Hi Tillerman,

I have a Navico 6500 on Chang Sha which has served me well over the years. A few problems with the wiring on the microphone plug which were basically wear and tear and the display board went into a smoke sub-routine a few years ago but I was able to find a replacement board, actually from someone on this channel!

If you could find one of those you could do worse. Don't think they are on the market any more though because they don't have the digital selective calling bit or an automatic link to GPS for distress. But for getting in touch with the coastguard when the chips are down, well, they do work!

I also have a Cobra hand-held which works fine though the range is obviously limited.

Couple of things I learned though.

1) get a good antenna. I have a 2 meter whip mounted vertically on the steel roof and that seems to make a big difference compared to other installations I've seen and played with. When I was in trouble on Lough Ree a couple of years ago my Pan-Pan calls were heard well down on Lough Derg!

2) the loudspeakers and audio amplifiers in some of the cheaper sets are rubbish and the reception is very distorted. Make sure you get to try the set in real conditions, like on the deck of the boat with the engine roaring in nwindy conditions. I added a cheap external loudspeaker to the navico because the radio is inside the wheelhouse and I steer outside but that might be an option as well.

3)beware of people selling radios cheap on the internet. I got caught a few years ago buying one from a UK dealer on amazon. He was selling US sets which by default start up on a different set of channel frequencies which are incompatible with what's standard this side of the ditch. This wasn't clear in the ad and it was only when I started playing with the radio, I found the issue. In fairness the set was switchable but you had to make the switch every time you turned on the radio which isn't ideal.

If you can afford it, the benchmark seem to be the ICOM radios but I've no direct experience of those.

Colin
GMY Chang Sha
EI3710
Re: VHF radio advice
02 February, 2018 16:31
What are the licensing requirements for VHF in Ireland? I inherited a radio with my boat and don't have a clue.
Re: VHF radio advice
02 February, 2018 18:08
Quote:
Andy Jordan
Over and out doesn't make any sense John, surely its one or the other.the finger smiley

It sure is Andy.. smoking smiley

(I'm giving up humour for the New Year.)
Re: VHF radio advice
02 February, 2018 18:20
Quote:
Doug Lane
What are the licensing requirements for VHF in Ireland? I inherited a radio with my boat and don't have a clue.

As far as I can remember you need an Operator's License (VHF/Short Range is all we need on the lakes) and a Ships's License.

You need the first before you can get the second.

Open to correction on the above, the "rules" may have changed since 2005.

John
Yacht "Licensed to Transmit"
Re: VHF radio advice
05 February, 2018 15:08
Quote:
Tillerman53
Hi all,
Finally getting around to buying a VHF transceiver for my barge. Budget allows for about €300. Any recommendations, experience, advice welcome.
Thanks guys,

Hi Phil. You won't go wrong any of these three quality brands: Standard Horizon, Garmin or ICOM. Don't forget the cost of a VHF antenna. Noel

Three examples:
[marineparts.ie]
[marineparts.ie]
[www.chmarine.com]
Re: VHF radio advice
05 February, 2018 15:17
Quote:
Doug Lane
What are the licensing requirements for VHF in Ireland? I inherited a radio with my boat and don't have a clue.

Legally you need two pieces of paper, one for the ship (vessel) and one for the operator (you). I would hazard an informed guess that at least 75% of folk who use VHF on the inland waterways have neither. I quite enjoyed the process of getting an operators cert many years ago (i.e. one day course+short test). Over all the yeas I've never been asked to produce my ships ration license nor my operators cert once by anybody. IMHO IWAI rally's should inspect same as a prerequisite to enter.

IWAI guide here: [www.iwai.ie]

Official info here but there is a lot of confusing guff to wade through. [www.comreg.ie]
Re: VHF radio advice
05 February, 2018 16:24
Hi Phil
I have used a NAVMAN radio for the last 12 years with absolutely no problems and I believe they would be in and about your price range if you connect your gps to them they will give your position in an emergency.. If you just want a standard radio I believe Union does one for around the €160 mark.

Regards
Andy Jordan
M>V El-roi
Re: VHF radio advice
05 February, 2018 18:54
Hi Noel,
Thanks for the advice, just what I was looking for. I'm familiar with the regs on licencing and will be going 'legal'. Thanks again.
On reading your second reply, I wasn't aware of the requirement for a 'rations licence'. Would that cover beer and wine also......????

Tm53
Re: VHF radio advice
05 February, 2018 19:08
Hi Andy,
Thanks for advice, but as my positioning system involves a mark #1 eyeball coupled with the index finger v1.1 and a paper chart, I will need a GPS enabled radio.

Tm53
Re: VHF radio advice
14 February, 2018 15:35
Quote:
N Griffin
Quote:
Doug Lane
What are the licensing requirements for VHF in Ireland? I inherited a radio with my boat and don't have a clue.

Legally you need two pieces of paper, one for the ship (vessel) and one for the operator (you). I would hazard an informed guess that at least 75% of folk who use VHF on the inland waterways have neither. I quite enjoyed the process of getting an operators cert many years ago (i.e. one day course+short test). Over all the yeas I've never been asked to produce my ships ration license nor my operators cert once by anybody. IMHO IWAI rally's should inspect same as a prerequisite to enter.

IWAI guide here: [www.iwai.ie]

Official info here but there is a lot of confusing guff to wade through. [www.comreg.ie]

I've never heard of licences being inspected either, but I did hear Lough Derg CG radio asking for someone's call sign during a call. If you do not have a ships licence, you will not have a call sign.
Re: VHF radio advice
14 February, 2018 16:48
Do suggest you get one with Digital Selective Calling. In the event of the worst happening it makes the distress call much easier and, when linked to a GPS, automatically sens your position.
Your operator's course should cover this.
Re: VHF radio advice
15 February, 2018 19:06
Quote:
Mike Kingston
Do suggest you get one with Digital Selective Calling. In the event of the worst happening it makes the distress call much easier and, when linked to a GPS, automatically sens your position.
Your operator's course should cover this.

Yes good advice. The very first thing I do when we have new guests on board is show them the little red button and explain they need to press and hold it down for FIVE seconds if anything bad happened (e.g. skipper out of commission or gone over the side so can't handle the radio). They don't even have to know how to talk on the VHF as an instant distress is sent with the vessels location and MMSI no, so help will be on the way.

A DSC VHF set connected to a live GPS in this day and age really is a must have safety feature.
Re: VHF radio advice
15 February, 2018 21:24
Thanks guys, lots of helpful advice, think you have answered all my questions.
So it'll be a GPS enabled DSC unit, probably an ICOM at the top of the list.
Thanks again, over and out.

Tm53
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