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Old 18-07-2007, 23:34   #16
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Thanks for that. Obviously I'm happy to reciprocate with any material on my site. I know there are people who peruse both and it's not my intention to start any wars.
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Old 19-07-2007, 00:02   #17
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Unless they are depleted or outdated I don't believe it would be automatic, in my case it was not, still good for another six months and service station claimed to the yard usually good for an extra five years ... quite irresponsible if you think about the operational specifications and an accredited service centre.
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Old 19-07-2007, 01:33   #18
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Hmmmm, interesting. I thought when the thing was serviced, it automaticaly had a new battery. That's why it is supposed to cost so much.
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Hey Wheels, you don't own an epirb
Well yeah actually I do. I don't consider it because it is the old freq. and it is packed in the liferaft which is now overdue for inpsection anyway.
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Old 19-07-2007, 02:22   #19
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That is at the five year milestone, a new battery for the 406 was quoted to me last April US$300 but by the 5 year mark the vessel would have been decommissioned so I decided against.
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Old 19-07-2007, 09:35   #20
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Word from ACR

I have just received a response from ACR to my email of yesterday:

Quote:
Dear Scott,

You can send it to Customer Service, ACR Electronics, 5757 Ravenswood Rd, Fort Lauderdale, 33312.
Please add your return address, name, what you want done with the unit and I will see that it is done.

Regards


Nicolaas Buckle
Customer Services Technician
That's pretty good response time IMO. I intend to send our unit to ACR for a replacement battery and a check-up on up to spec. operation. The battery may be good for more years but why reduce the safety factor on such an important piece of equipment? Given that our insurance is costing nearly $4000 per year, the extra $60 ($300 / 5) seems insignificant. (Moreover, I can just imagine floating around in a life-raft explaining to my better half that although the EPIRB's battery is shot and we're stuck, I did save $300!)

I will be interested to learn what seanseamour finds from the post mortum on his unit. Frankly, it occures to me that if his service center did a poor job on the recert, they may not have properly sealed the unit, which could have allow water in. Even a little water between the battery contacts would have dead-shorted the battery in no time.

N'any case...seanseamour, good luck!

s/v HyLyte
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Old 19-07-2007, 10:06   #21
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"No the battery was not replaced,"
The rule of thumb used to be -- and AFAIK still is -- that the best long life batteries were lithium-based, with a 10-year shelf life BUT they are supposed to be replaced at 5 years, because at that point they are down to half power, and that means a limited transmission time, which is even worse in cold weather. Cold weather can cut the battery power down by 50-75% at any time, so a five year old battery in the north atlantic....Is due for replacement. Pricey, but due.

Specialized battery replacement: What a racket, worse than liferaft repacking!
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Old 19-07-2007, 13:31   #22
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Yes exactly right Hellosailor. So a half flat battery in very cold weather may only transmit for an hr or so at most. For the old freq systems, the units often had to transmit for a minimum of an hr just to rely on the very first contact of a passing satillite. Sometimes it required two passes to get a fix and then that was rather a broad area. At least the new 406's are faster and more accurate, but if you are on the fringe of receiving (high latitudes) area, it can still take sometime to give an accurate fix.

I know one of the old units had customer servicable batteries. Have any of the new 406's got that facility???
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Old 19-07-2007, 16:09   #23
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Wheels, I don't know. Last time I saw a review I don't think any of them mentioned that, but in today's corporate world? Who wants to let the revenue opportunity (cough, cough) slip away to charge a hundred bucks for labor? And of course, they can argue that a simple, sonic-welded waterproof case is more reliable--even if it does mean the user can't replace the battery. The company splits open the old case, replaces the battery, welds on a new case, and it is assured waterproof again as well.

Me? If they weld it shut I'll take Mr. Dremel and open negotiatons.<G>
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Old 21-07-2007, 06:48   #24
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I took my ACR epirb in for battery replacement in May of this year. I put the unit in my backpack, and by the time I got to the repair shop the antenna had broken off. The shop said 'no problem, we will give you a new antenna at no charge' as there have been problems with these antennas'.

The treatment the antenna got in my backpack wasn't as severe as it might get being deployed in a storm, so it didn't give me a great deal of confidence that the epirb I was carrying around was going to work when I needed it. I would suggest that all ACR owners give their epirb antennas a little bend back and forth at the dock and/or talk to ACR about replacing them.
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Old 21-07-2007, 08:56   #25
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Yes ACR has had a lot of problems with their antennae, but to be honest, my 11year old ACR unit which saved my life, well I had taped it up with 3m self bonding six or seven years ago, and the newer one started flaking several years ago and by the time it came back from re-certification (which although requested was obviously never done), it was down to the metal. The service center never bothered to even propose to change mine. Their real problem which I understand is solved is the seal into the unit from the screw attachment to the antennae. All these are issues I will be addressing with ACR once I understand why it failed, why it was not serviced per request, finally why it was registered to another boat.
The key isue I have since learned and should preoccupy all is the fact that the service centres are only allowed to change battery and seal, again form what I understand is ACR policy is any other form of intervention requires unit to be shipped to Ft Lauterdale. I do not yet know i they are allowed to check the hexadecimal code ID to boat and owner -- that will be coming down the pike.
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Old 22-07-2007, 04:13   #26
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Does anyone know what the replacement battery in the GME MT400 406 EPIRB costs? I paid $450 kiwi for the unit new.
MT400 406 EPIRB
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Old 22-07-2007, 13:37   #27
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Wow, that's an excellent price Darryl. Where'd you get it.
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Old 22-07-2007, 15:56   #28
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our club got in a bulk order over a year ago. They were retailing for $699 at the time. $450 is still a good price a year later!
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Old 02-08-2007, 17:07   #29
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Salcom in Christchurch makes epirbs which enable you to replace your own batteries. I wonder what thay have in the way of a 406 and at what price. Any Kiwis out there give us an answer?
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Old 04-08-2007, 15:49   #30
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Just checked my never used or tested ACR 2744 Cat II GPS EPRIB. It first failed the power test and now fails all tests. It has a little tag on it that states the battery replacement date is 2/2009. Guess who is getting a call Monday?
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