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VHF Radio for Those on a Budget  Bottom

  • I remember having less income back in the day and having to save my pennies for a $400 VHF radio.

    Anybody here putting this safety consideration on hold due to cost, should check this out:

    https://www.westmarine.co…held-vhf-radio--18050542

    This $99.99 radio is in my most recent West Marine mailer with an additional $20 rebate. 80 bucks is a damned good deal on a floating submersible VHF. And this should actually be submersible unlike the older ones before my battle with WM back in the 90s.

    --
    Bill Mattson
    Prindle 19 "Gelli Bean"
    Prindle 19 "Cat's Pajamas"
    --
  • Sweet deal!

    I have an ICOM M73 (current retail around 180).
    I don't put it in a bag or anything extra, but I do maintain it.
    Meaning after every use I
    Give it a good fresh water rinse and dry (No pressurized hose off)
    pull off all the knobs, etc and clean them out with a toothbrush with a coating of WD40 on it (Surprising how much salt build up there is)
    Give it a wipe down with a cloth damp with WD40
    Charge it
    Store it with the battery separately (There are seals I don't want to develop memory)

    I don't know that any of this nonsense is worth it or proven, but I have had it for 6 years or so and it looks and performs like new. Moral of the story, develop your own crazy method and maintain your equipment.

    --
    Joshua

    Texas Gulf Coast
    '82 Prindle 16 (Badfish)
    '02 Hobie Wave (Unnamed Project)
    ‘87 Hobie 18 (Sold)
    ‘89 Hobie 17 (ill-advised project boat, Sold)
    --
  • I'm also a fan of Icom. Better sensitivity and audio than many others. I've had crew turn their radios off when they heard chatter coming from mine that theirs didn't pick up.
    Good idea to preserve the seals Joshua. I'll start doing that myself.

    --
    Brett
    2012 Goodall C2 with 2014 Hulls (warranty)
    1992 Hobie 18 w/ SX Wings (Sold)
    Tucson, AZ
    --
  • Bill. No Rebate mentioned at the WM site. Still, a good unit and deal.

    You have a different link to share?

    --
    Prindle 18
    96734
    --
  • nohuhuBill. No Rebate mentioned at the WM site. Still, a good unit and deal.

    You have a different link to share?


    The rebate was mentioned in the paper mailer from West Marine, and my local store is in Oxnard, CA. This could be something only offered in some areas. I would check with the local West Marine.

    --
    Bill Mattson
    Prindle 19 "Gelli Bean"
    Prindle 19 "Cat's Pajamas"
    --
  • I have the SH earlier version of this radio and I love it. In four races it has spent 5 hours each in my vest being splashed with water every 11 seconds and it works well. We use it so that both crew on the cat have a radio on them, and it is used to receive and transmit with the safety boat and the committee boat throughout the race. Battery time is also good.

    --
    Sheet In!
    Bob
    ___/)_____/)_/)____/)____/)_____/)/)__________/)__
    Prindle 18-2 #244 "Wakizashi"
    Prindle 16 #3690 "Pegasus" Sold (sigh)
    AZ Multihull Fleet 42 member
    (Way) Past Commodore of Prindle Fleet 14
    Arizona, USA
    --
  • I have a high-end Cobra unit and I can’t recommend it.

    --
    Prindle 18
    96734
    --
  • Speaking of these radios, are they legal everywhere? Because I plan to be boating in Cyprus as my wife and I are planning to buy property in Cyprus there this winter. And I was wondering about the legality of radios as I know that frequences are heavily controlled in France, among other countries. Or should I get a radio license?
  • vandeb5590Speaking of these radios, are they legal everywhere? Because I plan to be boating in Cyprus as my wife and I are planning to buy property in Cyprus there this winter. And I was wondering about the legality of radios as I know that frequences are heavily controlled in France, among other countries. Or should I get a radio license?

    In the US? Yes they're legal. There are regulations you should learn. A license is great to have if you are willing to get it.
    If using VHF for its intended purpose (i.e. Ship to Ship and I believe Ship to "shore station" provided the shore station is located adjacent the water, not 100% sure on that one though its done frequently) you do not need a license.
    There are channels you are not allowed on. Google for a list of appropriate channels and keep it close by until you learn them.



    Edited by badfish on Jun 27, 2019 - 01:42 PM.

    --
    Joshua

    Texas Gulf Coast
    '82 Prindle 16 (Badfish)
    '02 Hobie Wave (Unnamed Project)
    ‘87 Hobie 18 (Sold)
    ‘89 Hobie 17 (ill-advised project boat, Sold)
    --
  • Okay, thanks! I'll look into the EU regulations to make sure I don't do anything wrong, but you've given me directions to look into and that's great.
  • From a cobra user manual:
    “VHF Marine Channel Assignments
    Three sets of VHF channels have been established for marine use in the U.S.A., Canada and the rest of the world (International). Most of the channels are the same for all three maps, but there are definite differences (see table on the following pages). Your radio has all three maps built into it and will operate correctly in whichever area you choose.

    The following is a brief outline of the channel assignment types in the U.S.A. Channel Map. See the detailed channel map pages for assignments of each channel.”

    Check your VHFs manual.

    --
    Prindle 18
    96734
    --

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