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Old 01-12-2015, 15:23   #61
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Re: Manual vs Hydrostatic EPIRB?

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Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post
Dr. Sea,

I attempted to provide some clarity earlier in this discussion that might help you decide what you want. See this post.

Once you read that, you can better determine if you want a Hydrostatic release mechanism [which needs to be replaced every 2 years for ~US$100] or a 'float free' type of mount. [What I decided to use...]

Since in the US we can only register EPIRBs that automatically actuate in water, either mounting mechanism will achieve the desired results.

I hope this helps.

Cheers!

-Bill

Having a quick look, I don't think this is correct. The float free models I've googled this morning have hydrostatic releases which is what makes them 'float free'.
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Old 01-12-2015, 15:27   #62
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

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Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
Yes, one registered in Australia and one in the USA.
The Aussie one I registered there before I flew out with it

Sent from a stupid phone that replaces words with weird stuff.
I have one of these PLB1 - Ocean Signal and it's registered here in Sweden. Thinking about getting a 2nd and will buy it in Aussie especially since the price is not bad

Would also like an AIS MOB MOB1 - Ocean Signal for each person onboard now I won't be solo
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Old 01-12-2015, 15:38   #63
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

Hi. Regarding registration.
In Germany you can register only an Epirb to the boat.
If you buy a Plb it gets registered under your name but in the UK.

I wonder if this workaround would work for non free-floating devices in the US too.
Maybe it's worth checking that if someone has problems registering such a device in the US.


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Old 01-12-2015, 16:13   #64
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Re: Manual vs Hydrostatic EPIRB?

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Originally Posted by Rustic Charm View Post
And it was very useful post too

So, 'float free' don't use a hydrostatic release I hadn't realised that.
Thanks, Rustic, and sorry for adding to the confusion with my mention of 'float-free' without context...

Hydrostatic release brackets [Category I] are the most durable for prevention of accidental release because they hold the EPIRB firmly in place until they sink 2-4 meters underwater...

By 'float-free' I was referring to any method of mounting an EPIRB so it could... you guessed it... float-free if submerged... This approach is not as bullet-proof as the hydrostatic release mechanism in that a knock-down or roll over could allow the EPIRB to slide out of a 'float-free' bracket.

What I did to accomplish 'float-free' capability was keep a non-hydrostatic case from my previous EPIRB and slide my current EPIRB into it. It fits well enough to hold it in place for routine and unintended acrobatics, but the EPIRB can slide out of the bracket if submerged [I tested this in fresh and salt water...] but not if perfectly upside-down; a state I don't think my fixed keel boat could maintain for long- unless perhaps the keel falls off...

With all that said, the new EPIRB I'll soon be purchasing to replace my existing requires manual antenna deployment, so I won't be able to use it in a float-free scenario; manual only. [Don't tell anyone, but I plan to keep the current EPIRB around after its batteries expire next year- for a few years in it's float-free holder...]

Hopefully this helps provide some additional context...

Cheers!

Bill
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Old 01-12-2015, 16:16   #65
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Re: Manual vs Hydrostatic EPIRB?

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Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post

I attempted to provide some clarity earlier in this discussion that might help you decide what you want. See this post.

-Bill
Thanks to Bill Wakefield and Rustic Charm for their input regarding the various combinations of options for EPIRBs. Here is my summary of their summaries:

Category I or II refers only to how the EPIRB is released from its mounted position. Category I (Hydrostatic) releases automatically when it is submerged 5-13 feet below surface, or it can also be released manually. Personally I would want my EPIRB to start operating long before it is 5-13 feet below surface. So I might as well save $100-200 and buy a Category II which will require me to pull it off the wall (which I would be eager to do).

From what I can tell, all models sold in the USA activate automatically when they are removed from their mounts and become wet. Or they can be manually activated without becoming wet. The rather inexpensive model that requires manual activation is approved only for Australia or New Zealand.

From reading on the Ocean Signal website I've learned that there is yet another choice to make in choosing an EPIRB: GPS type. They all use GPS, but some of the newer (and more expensive) models have a built in GPS, while older (and cheaper) models use a different system. Here is how they explained it:

The GPS EPIRB not only provides the safety authorities with a more accurate position, but is also much quicker to pass the position through. Conventional EPIRBs rely on the passing overhead of one or more COSPAS-SARSAT satellites to determine the EPIRBs position. With a GPS fitted EPIRP, the position is immediately relayed via geostationary satellites to the rescue authorities, saving valuable time in your rescue.

And finally, there is the brand to consider. ACR is the brand that I'm familiar with and comfortable with, but Ocean Signal has some very good looking products that claim longer battery life. I have emailed them to make sure that their products are approved for use in the USA, but it seems that they are.
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Old 01-12-2015, 16:53   #66
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Re: Manual vs Hydrostatic EPIRB?

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Originally Posted by Dr. Sea View Post
...

...And finally, there is the brand to consider. ACR is the brand that I'm familiar with and comfortable with, but Ocean Signal has some very good looking products that claim longer battery life. I have emailed them to make sure that their products are approved for use in the USA, but it seems that they are.
Great summary, Dr. Sea. Thank you.

I would be interested to learn what you hear back from Ocean Signal, as we have reached the same conclusions.

From an earlier post regarding how I came to my EPIRB decision, upon over-thinking my choice I mused:

Quote:
Sidebar on this unit: Ironically, the Ocean Signal RescueMe EPIRB1 I [have chosen] is Class 2 [automatically activated in water] so can therefore be registered with NOAA for US flagged vessels [and all other countries] BUT is requires manual deployment of the antenna... Now this is something I can live with, but it seems at odds with my interpretation of the intent of the water activation requirement. [e.g., If this unit floated-free of a sinking vessel, it will activate- but the signals won't be transmitted until the antenna is manually deployed...]
Don't tell NOAA... [They approve the Emergency Beacon devices- and maintain the registry- for US registrants...]

Cheers!

Bill
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Old 01-01-2016, 19:15   #67
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

I always say, I want them to find me, not my boat. A person in the water will float at a different speed than a epirb. If you do not have the epirb when you go in, you can be miles from it in just a few hrs..
McMurdo sells a 48 hr. PLB, ACR sells floating ones. and Ocean Signal sells one that is so small, you can attach it to the oral inflation tube of your closed lifevest.
The cost of both epirb and PLBs have come way down over the past few years. Get both and you'll feel extra safe.
BTW, A floating PLB is not intended to broadcast a signal. It floats so you can relocate it if is dropped in the water. My over water kits also have a 36" piece of line attached to the PLB to prevent loss.
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Old 01-01-2016, 19:49   #68
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

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"Many have found out" Could you provide some link to a report of even one PLB that didn't function because it was not held clear of the water? This is oft repeated but I am not sure it has happened in an actual distress situation. And in the great majority of cases, the PLB is actuated while on the boat.

And the antenna does not need to be held up for any length of time. It would only have to be oriented correctly for a few seconds to transmit. In fact, two PLB's sent messages from crewmen in the water when Cheeki-Raffiki capsized. Even though only a couple of messages were received, this was all rescuers needed.

I agree with some others that multiple PLB's is a safer solution than a single EPIRB. That's what I carry.
Once the antenna of a PLB submerges in water, it willl short out the signal. The same is true with an EPIRB. The epirb floats with the antenna pointing up and rides on top of the seas. A floating PLB will float with the antenna pointing down into the water.
It is true that a plb has to be up and out of the water to function. This is why I continually harass the plb makers to place a belt clip or way to attach the body of the plb to a higher point such as the top of your inflated lifevest bladder. They just don't get it... For those who carry a plb, you will need to figure a way to attach the plb to the top of your bladder. Some come with armbands but I would still attach to the bladder. Your arm will be submersed.
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Old 02-01-2016, 05:49   #69
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

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Originally Posted by ASTBoone View Post
I always say, I want them to find me, not my boat. A person in the water will float at a different speed than a epirb. If you do not have the epirb when you go in, you can be miles from it in just a few hrs..
McMurdo sells a 48 hr. PLB, ACR sells floating ones. and Ocean Signal sells one that is so small, you can attach it to the oral inflation tube of your closed lifevest.
The cost of both epirb and PLBs have come way down over the past few years. Get both and you'll feel extra safe.
BTW, A floating PLB is not intended to broadcast a signal. It floats so you can relocate it if is dropped in the water. My over water kits also have a 36" piece of line attached to the PLB to prevent loss.
Your saying "I want them to find me, not my boat", might be useful if your a solo sailor, but not if you have crew. Ideally, and in most epirb distress situations, the crew are with the boat, or with the raft. There is another common saying which says, "always stay with the boat until the boat leaves you".
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Old 02-01-2016, 09:35   #70
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

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Originally Posted by Rustic Charm View Post
Your saying "I want them to find me, not my boat", might be useful if your a solo sailor, but not if you have crew. Ideally, and in most epirb distress situations, the crew are with the boat, or with the raft. There is another common saying which says, "always stay with the boat until the boat leaves you".
Hello Rustic Charm,
I concur with your "Ideally the crew will be with the boat", but this is seldom not the case. If you review the last four or five cases here in the U.S., there were crew members separated from the vessel and other crew members. To assume that you will be able to stay with the boat in every scenario is dangerous. It's much safer to assume that you CAN be separated and prepare for it.
I believe the saying "always stay with the boat until the boat leaves you" applies to don't abandon ship too soon. It applies to your example as well but it's harder to hold onto a over-turned or partially submersed boat in a mix then you might think, especially when in colder water.
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Old 02-01-2016, 15:03   #71
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

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Hello Rustic Charm,
I concur with your "Ideally the crew will be with the boat", but this is seldom not the case. If you review the last four or five cases here in the U.S., there were crew members separated from the vessel and other crew members. To assume that you will be able to stay with the boat in every scenario is dangerous. It's much safer to assume that you CAN be separated and prepare for it.
I believe the saying "always stay with the boat until the boat leaves you" applies to don't abandon ship too soon. It applies to your example as well but it's harder to hold onto a over-turned or partially submersed boat in a mix then you might think, especially when in colder water.
That's not accurate (and good morning)

Most 'epirb' rescues are completed from a vessel. I don't have time now but if you go through the thread someone put up the stats I recall. Those doing night shifts on my vessel wear the only plb we have. If they go forward at night, my rule is they must wake someone up. Other than that, everything is planned for staying with the vessel.
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Old 03-01-2016, 06:27   #72
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

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That's not accurate (and good morning)

Most 'epirb' rescues are completed from a vessel. I don't have time now but if you go through the thread someone put up the stats I recall. Those doing night shifts on my vessel wear the only plb we have. If they go forward at night, my rule is they must wake someone up. Other than that, everything is planned for staying with the vessel.
What's not accurate? Are you saying most people don't get separated after a sinking?
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Old 03-01-2016, 12:07   #73
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

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Quite unusual for an item to be cheaper in Aus!
We have two registered EPIRBs on our boat at the moment as one was due to expire this year and Whitworths had an ACR special on that included first aid kit,strobe light, mirror ,headlight and other bits and bobs in a very handy ditch bag for about $275 aud which was about the same cost as replacing the battery in the othe one.I know they are mandatory in this country but really for the low cost I don't know why you would not have one elsewhere in the world.
Maybe a dumb question but are the frequencies the same worldwide?
Chris
Hello Mirage Gecko,
Yes, all ELTs (EPIRBs and PLBs) operate on 406MHz and 121.5MHz, but they should be coded for the country where the beacon is located. This helps to speed up the SAR process by contacting the SAR resources in that particular country.
If you purchase a ELT from another country, you just need to tell the seller to code it to your country (503 for Australia). Most don't charge for this code change.
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Old 03-01-2016, 14:55   #74
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

[QUOTE=ASTBoone;2004727]What's not accurate? Are you saying most people don't get separated after a sinking?[/QUOTE]

Listen Boone, I'm more than happy with conversing on this subject, but please DO NOT deliberately twist or make false statements like this as if they came from me I'd appreciate it. Otherwise I simply won't engage with you at all.

What I was suggesting is that most epirb rescues at sea (52%) are from vessels including liferafts, not from crew that have been separated from the vessel. Someone managed to find the figures on this earlier. I'm not sure where they got them from.
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Old 03-01-2016, 16:46   #75
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Re: Personal Locator Beacon as boat's EPIRB?

[QUOTE=Rustic Charm;2005178]
Quote:
Originally Posted by ASTBoone View Post
What's not accurate? Are you saying most people don't get separated after a sinking?[/QUOTE]

Listen Boone, I'm more than happy with conversing on this subject, but please DO NOT deliberately twist or make false statements like this as if they came from me I'd appreciate it. Otherwise I simply won't engage with you at all.

What I was suggesting is that most epirb rescues at sea (52%) are from vessels including liferafts, not from crew that have been separated from the vessel. Someone managed to find the figures on this earlier. I'm not sure where they got them from.
Rustic Charm, I didn't twist your words or accuse you of saying anything. I simply asked a question because I didn't understand what you were saying.
Don't worry about having to respond because I will no longer be a member of this forum. Seems a person can't make a comment on this site without being attacked by the same bunch of arrogant know it alls.
And yes. Despite the statistics. saying most epirb rescues take place at the boat or liferaft, (which is a no Brainer) I would still recommend carrying a plb just in case you do get separated. Its called Preperation...
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