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Old 28-05-2013, 20:42   #46
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar - Garmin

Here's the link for the Garmin, if you need to get the original image to zoom in sufficiently.

https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&...%3B3965%3B2832
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Old 28-05-2013, 20:44   #47
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar (This one looks like Raymarine)

This one looks like maybe Raymarine. Here's the link and I will attach the photo.

https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&...x%3B950%3B1090
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Old 03-01-2014, 15:28   #48
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

Dear Brethren,

Does anyone have any feedback (on performance and clarity) with a SIMRAD 4G mounted on their mast? As I have recently purchased the new 4G radar with the NSS 16" Touchscreen MFD. However, the installation guide clearly states:
“DON’T install the scanner too high up (eg at the top of a mast), which may cause degradation of the radar picture over short ranges”.
So that isn’t really helpful, as I have a 58’ mast and I began to question myself is 25’ or 35’ “too high” and what type of “degradation” would I see from this height? So I sent an email to SIMRAD support, of course the initial response was also less than helpful:
"The higher you go, the more you are subject to pitch and roll. This can affect the performance. And it also sets the beam further out ahead of the boat. The bottom line is you would have to install it, and test it, and see if the performance is adequate for you. If not, you will know you have to lower the dome."
Now I’ve only been a boat owner for about 10 years, and I do welcome the opportunity to learn everyday, but I’ve never heard of a temporary support on a mast that would allow me to adjust the height of a scanner, in order to refine the distance and performance (and if one exists, could anyone please teach me this activity?). And I’m also not about to begin drilling multiple sets of holes in my mast to perform a Design Of Experiments to determine the proper mounting height.
Undaunted by this, I called SIMRAD support today on the phone. Unfortunately, with perhaps a little too much dripping sarcasm from the ‘technician’, I was again told “they have no idea how high is too high and that would be up to my personal preferences”… which now suddenly explains why we have never seen any corporate brochures from this company with a sailboat on it.
Now if things couldn't upset me more; I also inquired about the intermediate stay that I have on the front of my mast. All Z-Spar masts (US-Spars here in the states) that I have seen have a forward stay that leads from the upper front of the mast down over the triangular jumper spreader to the lower front of the mast (forming a diamond stay). So if you want to mount your nice big SIMRAD 4G radar on the front of the mast, you’re probably going to have to install it directly behind the 1” SS stay (shroud) wire. During my explanation of this geometry to the SIMRAD ‘technician’ I was pleasantly rewarded with more sarcasm and laughter that “this would not work”. Seeing that this discussion was not going to solve my problems and not wanting to escalate this issue into a non-professional area, I terminated the call.
SIMRAD if your reading these blogs; you have some explaining to do in regards to professional courtesy.
To all my fellow sailors; has anyone had success with their 3G/4G mounting ? And could you please share with the rest of us?
Note: if you are a catamaran owner, you may want to think three times before buying a SIMRAD broadband radar, as most all of us have a forward facing intermediate stay on the mast.

Thanks in Advance for any help – Ho’Aloha
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Old 03-01-2014, 17:26   #49
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

The height question is an easy trigonometry exercise - the vertical beam width is in the manual, so it is easy to figure out the dead zone with height. I don't know the beam width of that unit, but I can pretty much guess with a lot of certainty that you can mount it pretty high before it becomes a practical issue. Unless you are using it to keep track of your crew on deck. Even then, side lobes will probably find them. BTW, the side lobes will take care of almost all short range returns anyway.

You really have a 1" shroud? How big is your catamaran? That is at least double the diameter of what us smaller boats have (actually, our catamaran doesn't have an intermediate at all, and I know lots of them without one).

Even at 1", I don't think you will lose much, but I'm not going to bet on that.

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Old 03-01-2014, 17:38   #50
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

Okay, I'll bite. But first, you have to lose the attitude. I've installed five 3G and 4G radars this last year, three of them on sailboats, the other two on power boats. It's not a big deal. You want it high enough to make the bottom part of the beam pick up nearby targets. For your boat (which I glean by the vague description you provided) is a catamaran with a 58 foot mast, so the boat is about 40-45 feet (?). Locate a spot below the staysail stay so that the antenna will have enough space in front to allow the sail to get around it (about twenty feet or so), OR, above it. Your rigger, or sailmaker, will help you make the best decision. Now, you need to remove the mast (yeah, it's not fair, etc., etc.) so you can install a conduit inside, and drill the necessary holes with complete control, not bounding around in a bos'n's chair. And while your doing this work, with the mast on sawhorses, go over the entire structure inspecting every single part on the mast. It's so much easier than doing it when the mast is vertical. Install the conduit and drill the exit hole for the radar antenna cable. While you're at it, consider installing a power hailer speaker so you can automatic fog signals. Need to install a new steaming light and foredeck light? This is the time to do it. How about LED spreader lights? Ditto. New VHF antenna? Same. How about masthead LED running lights (with strobe)? Again. Masthead instruments? This is the best time to do it. An LED light under your Windex? Go for it. Take apart the spreaders and replace the compression bolts (these don't last forever, and when they fail, you cry). Disassemble the masthead sheaves, clean and inspect them, then lube them. Do you need to install or replace flag halyards? Do it now. Any other toys, such as steps at the mast head so you can actually work on gear up there (because your bos'n chair doesn't get you high enough to actually perform service)? And what about paint repair, or even a total repaint of the mast (since you didn't tell us the age of the boat). You can even closely examine the sail track and any other items fastened on the mast, and repair them more quickly and securely with the mast on the ground. When you're all done you can install devices to keep the birds from roosting on the masthead or radar dome to keep the decks cleaner. I use standard 8" black electrician's ty-raps. Protect all exposed wires with cable loom to keep the UV from sunlight from destroying the insulation on the wires. All of this work with the mast on the ground. While it's down, replace ALL of the electrical wiring, including the VHF antenna cable, just for fun, and because a failure here is very expensive and time consuming to repair. Click on the images to see more clearly the details (for example, the Cable Clam fitting for the radar antenna cable and the hailer speaker installation).

And develop a better attitude, because those guys at Simrad make a terrific product and have a lot of experience helping folks install their products effectively. They will be of great use to you if the relationship is positive and not laden with disrespect and frustration. You are going to really enjoy the 3G or 4G. No other radar uses such low levels of current as Simrad. The images are good for the distance you are probably going to need. If not, install a magnetron type antenna, but you'll drain the house bank quicker over the course of a night watch. And the Simrad can be turned on for a quick peek, then shut off if you are really a miser for electrons.

I have a forty foot trimaran with a Raymarine antenna. I am going to be adding the 4G Simrad system to my boat this year, giving me a stacked radar array, with the 4G on top. I'm doing this because the older system is still very good, and the 4G is even better, but with less range than the Raymarine at highest power.
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Old 03-01-2014, 17:51   #51
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

Gents,

Thanks for the feedback. I actually did not mean for this to be rant (but I guess it's going to go down that way). I was actually shocked by the dialogue today myself (quotes are quotes).

In my discussion today, SIMRAD told me that mounting this unit behind the wire would cause too much interference. And that the proximity of the wire to the scanner was another factor itself, as the stay will be very close to the plastic housing. Which is why I'm interested in finding out if anyone else has already done this. I did notice that PS has a photo of this set-up in one of their articles, alas I don't have a subscription (guess I will now). Either way, just trying to figure out if this is going to work or not.

Thanks - Ho'Aloha
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:40   #52
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ho-Aloha View Post
Gents,

Thanks for the feedback. I actually did not mean for this to be rant (but I guess it's going to go down that way). I was actually shocked by the dialogue today myself (quotes are quotes).

In my discussion today, SIMRAD told me that mounting this unit behind the wire would cause too much interference. And that the proximity of the wire to the scanner was another factor itself, as the stay will be very close to the plastic housing. Which is why I'm interested in finding out if anyone else has already done this. I did notice that PS has a photo of this set-up in one of their articles, alas I don't have a subscription (guess I will now). Either way, just trying to figure out if this is going to work or not.

Thanks - Ho'Aloha
FWIW, the forward shroud doesn't affect a pulse radar. Also, if a shroud affects the Simrad that bad, whats the mast do to it???? Can only see targets forward of beam??

Hold your finger 6" in front of your nose. Can you see past your finger? The scanner will see past the shroud.
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Old 07-02-2014, 13:18   #53
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

Roy M, are those photos of your setup? I don't see the Ray device, that's why I'm asking.

When mounting radar on the mast, is it completely necessary to take the mast down? I understand it is probably a better way to assure a good install, but is it 100% necessary?

Also, for that matter, what about a wind vane? Completely necessary to de-mast?
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Old 07-02-2014, 13:45   #54
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

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Originally Posted by DDabs View Post
Roy M, are those photos of your setup? I don't see the Ray device, that's why I'm asking.

When mounting radar on the mast, is it completely necessary to take the mast down? I understand it is probably a better way to assure a good install, but is it 100% necessary?

Also, for that matter, what about a wind vane? Completely necessary to de-mast?
Not necessarily, depends on your access to find a messenger to pull the cable through. A lead weight on a piece of cord works, do you have an access opening near the base of your mast? is it deck stepped or keel stepped?
Mounting the bracket not fun from a bosun's chair but doable.
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Old 07-02-2014, 13:47   #55
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

Keel stepped. I am going to be putting the boat on the hard to install refrigeration and an arch/davits. Just weighing my options as to installing the radar/instrumentation.
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Old 07-02-2014, 15:05   #56
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

I'm having my Raymarine radar replaced with B&G 4G this year. I'm having someone do it for me who does this routinely. My boat is on the hard with the mast up. The installer wouldn't commit to being able to successfully pull the cable through with the mast up because of open questions about how the existing cable is run (conduit, tie-offs, etc.) and the challenge of access at the base of the mast. Since the radar was in place when we bought the boat, we couldn't give him any details on how the cable had been run. The mast is due to be pulled this year or next for other reasons so we're going to pull this year and have everything done.

If you know how the cable is stabilized and are comfortable that you will be able to pull the old cable out and the new one in despite the sharp angle at the base of the mast, you could be OK. However, it seems to be a more complex task than pulling halyards or some of the thinner cables.
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Old 08-02-2014, 10:07   #57
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

IS there an old cable? May be easier if there isnt... you wond have to deal with ties etc.
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Old 08-02-2014, 11:16   #58
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

I rarely have had luck (truth be told, never had luck) with installation without pulling the stick. Mast wiring which terminates at the deck has a step with a very small hole and there's always something in the way. But the most important consideration is this: You are about to spend a large amount of money. Get the biggest bang for your buck by pulling the stick, assessing ALL of the electrical wiring descending (steaming light, spreader lights, vhf antenna, and all the other stuff that could be installed and make life better), checking out all the hardware that could go bad later on (masthead sheaves seizing, compression bolts at the spreaders failing, vhf antennas dying, standing rigging that has exceeded its due date, etc.).

Here are a couple pics showing the narrow opening often available, One is a Catalina 32 (it had a knot in the wiring, preventing entry), the second a Cape Dory with a lot of mast wiring. In bigger boats your mast step may offer larger openings, but I have found it unlikely. In keel stepped masts you may have to make a larger exit hole, and drilling in bilges isn't easy. Pull the stick. It will take less time overall and lead to a much more professional and comprehensive solution.
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Old 08-02-2014, 11:43   #59
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

Here's a list of the mast wiring I commonly install (re-install in many cases, as lots of times it's too small, corroding at the terminal ends, etc.):

Masthead instrument cluster (new ones use a single N2K cable)
Masthead LED running light array (with anchor, strobe functions)
Masthead Windex illumination light (wired into the masthead running light wiring)
Masthead VHF antenna
Spreader lights
Steaming light (which is wired into the deck light circuit, via a DPDT selector switch for Power or Sail function)
Foredeck light (LED)
Radar cable(s)
Power Hailer (for automatic fog signals, etc.)

In bigger boats: CCTV PTZ video camera, High Intensity Discharge lamps (turn night into day), Wi-Fi and cell antennas, additional alarm speakers

For wiring that exits the mast I like using Cable Clams (zoom in on the second pic). Also, to keeps birds from alighting on the radar or masthead, I use black electrical tie wraps, and protect all external cables with u-v resistant black split loom
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Old 08-02-2014, 12:01   #60
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Re: B&G (Simrad) 4G Radar

I have my G4 about twenty feet up on a 38 ft boat. Works great. I can see my mooring bouy off the bow.
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