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Old 31-07-2008, 10:01   #1
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radar reflectors

curious as to what models everyone has and opinions of course!!
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Old 31-07-2008, 11:15   #2
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nalani,

This thread was begun three years ago, but includes recent posts. It should be a good start, then certainly come back with any questions you might have.

http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/f121/radar-reflectors-2092.html
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Old 31-07-2008, 11:26   #3
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Let's see if this works:

http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/f121/radar-reflectors-2092.html#post11254

Nope, does the same thing. I'll call the plumbers to get it fixed.

In the meantime, type "Radar Reflectors" into the search engine link below, and the thread will be one of the returns.

Cruisers & Sailing Forum
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Old 31-07-2008, 11:28   #4
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i am having the same problem
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Old 31-07-2008, 11:30   #5
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I can copy and paste the link, but not click on it.
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Old 31-07-2008, 11:49   #6
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I have read in Yachting world that, exept from the 'active' ones none of them are good.
It looks quite obvious seeing the small shape of most of these things. I also found out that while mine is on, we seem to be better visible by other yachts. i.o.w. In the pirate alley of Yemen we where advised by the yemenity coast guard therfore not to use them.
We didn't.

regards,

Rene Alondra, india, Alondra Sailing in India
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Old 31-07-2008, 11:51   #7
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Try Radar reflectors

Hud--Ya forgot to enclose the link within the link delimiters (above)

Cheers,

sv HyLyte

PS: Hud,

Hy is home, tan, well and really happy to have AC and hamburgers!
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Old 31-07-2008, 11:56   #8
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Thanks, Scott, but the "Insert Link" link in the toolbar is supposed to do that automatically. At least it always has before.

Glad to hear the Gal is back safe and sound!
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Old 31-07-2008, 11:58   #9
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nalani,
I will try to answer your question because the old link is not working for you. But as they say, by checking out the old posts, sometimes you can find the answers you are looking for.

Boats themselves make pretty good radar reflectors. Notice they are not shaped like a stealth fighter with flat surfaces and angles that reflect radar returns away from the source nor are they coated with radar absorbing materials.

The advantage of a good radar reflector might be in placing it towards the top of the mast where an approaching vessel coming over the horizon might see you earlier than a little bit later, before the cross section of your boat starts to become visible to their radar. After your hull is visible to their radar, the radar reflector becomes rather irrelevant because a 30 foot hull is going to make a much better reflector than a relatively small reflector....that's my opinion from what I have observed in real life.

Seastate will affect how well you can be seen. The rougher it is, the more the sea clutter adjustment must be turned up and the lower the gain must be turned down so the radar screen is not washed out with return from swells. This of course means you could be hidden amongst the swells and having a radar reflector won't make a bit of difference.

There is some debate on which are the good reflectors and which are not so good. Any reflector with three sides at exact 90 degree angles to each other and made of a smooth metal is probably a good bet. I have seen a few tests in some boating magazines over the years. Its probably an easy Google search to find some of these tests.

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Old 31-07-2008, 12:29   #10
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Plastimo/Mobri--

Like Hud we had two Mobri tubular radar reflectors on our rigging. One on each cap shroud just below the masthead. These were installed when we restepped the mast in March of '02 after shipping the yacht to Florida from Annapolis.

While I thought these were pretty good, an article and some published research on the efficacy of radar reflectors indicated that they were only effective if vertical. If not, their profile deteriorated markedly. That news was disappointing so, whenever we had an opportunity, I would contact passing ships and ask how we looked on their radar and when we were sighted. Most responses were favorable.

In early June we lost both reflectors. The first in rough seas as we exited Long Boat Pass south of Tampa Bay when we were forced out of the relatively narrow deep channel by an inbound power-boat. Outside the channel the sea was huge in the relatively shallow water and we were rockin 'n rollin big-time until we could regain the channel. In the midst of the uproar there was a terrific explosion on deck and I though we had lost a shroud. The mast stayed up, however, and we continued on. Later, upon examining wreckage on deck, I discovered that the plastic retainers on the Mobri mounted on the starboard cap-shroud had let go, dropping the thing 57 feet to the deck where it just exploded!

Two days later, while making a night passage from Boca Grande to Key West, we had to thread through a line of squalls and endure really rotten short choppy seas for eight hours or so during which the second Mobri took its leave (but did not end up on deck).

Once in Key West I examined the pieces of the starboard reflector again and it was evident that the plastic had deteriorated and weakened in the sun so much that the forces generated by the unit's own weight as the masthead lurched around had caused the plastic to crack off.

On our way home the following week--sans reflectors--we were passed by the Express Ferry from Ft. Myers to Key West. When they came abeam at about two miles, we contacted them by vhf and asked about our radar reflection. They indicated they had picked us up at 9 or 10 miles. Accordingly, I'm wondering if our Mobri's really did anything at all to enhance our reflection.

At this juncture I am considering adding the mid-sized tri-lens to our mast, just above our own radar dome--about 35 feet above deck--as that unit seems to have the best cost/reflected area ratio.

Cheers,

s/v HyLyte
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