I'm a little concerned: are you considering a handheld instead of a fixed mount radio
? The fixed mount can be CHEAPER, give you 4 or five times the range and power, and also give you the capability of sending the Coast Guard your exact position with the push of a single
button! (That's what DSC
can do for you.) A handheld radio
is a bit further down the list of things to get!
There are several $99 25 watt fixed mount radios that will use your masthead antenna
. All of them offer a limited form of DSC
but competition has led at least Standard Horizon to implement the most useful features or higher-end DSC radios in their least expensive (but still very good) radio. Get your ship's radio geared up first, then shop for a handheld. But when you do, get one that floats, uses AA batteries, and fits into your dinghy
bag with a flare or two!