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Old 16-03-2013, 22:55   #76
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

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Where are you going to buy those? I recommend the US versions because opening up only requires removing connetions while I think the EU version might require adding a diode, which is a pain because it's micro SMD.
Definitely US. I'll have my father bring the gear over when he comes to the UK for our summer cruise.

I would have done it anyway for the sake of price, but to avoid soldering micro SMD's clinches the deal! That's way beyond my soldering abilities!

Meanwhile I will register my call sign and start playing with APRS over Internet to try to understand it better.
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Old 17-03-2013, 00:55   #77
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

Another interesting aprs application..

Bob Bruninga, WB4APR, Takes APRS Underground
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Old 17-03-2013, 05:17   #78
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I want to create a "boat monitor" telling me the inside temperature, battery voltage, bilge alarm etc. I think it's gonna be easy using the Tinytrack4 in telemetry mode
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Old 17-03-2013, 05:24   #79
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

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I want to create a "boat monitor" telling me the inside temperature, battery voltage, bilge alarm etc. I think it's gonna be easy using the Tinytrack4 in telemetry mode
You can easily do that with GSM mobile telephony. E.g., GSM Marine Boat & Yatch alarms.

I would think that would use a lot less power than having a VHF/UHF radio running all the time.

Still, it's a fascinating project. Keep us informed!
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Old 17-03-2013, 05:36   #80
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You can easily do that with GSM mobile telephony. E.g., GSM Marine Boat & Yatch alarms.

I would think that would use a lot less power than having a VHF/UHF radio running all the time.

Still, it's a fascinating project. Keep us informed!
Yes, but you are assuming that mobile phone connectivity is everywhere... signals are very weak and reliability is very low here; this marina is a 13km drive into the jungle from Gatun locks...

Power is not a problem for boats with solar panels. I would love to create a version that monitors a NMEA2000 network and send updates from any data I wish on that...
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Old 17-03-2013, 14:44   #81
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

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Ah, gain. You are misinformed. The Galaxy 5400 is a single dipole so it has a 3dB gain
I also prefer dipoles but those bogus gain figures drives me crazy. Note how they leave out the most important thing, what that dB figure relates to!

A dipole, per definition, has 0dBd gain, which is 2.15 dBi. Fiberglass antennas are often perfect dipoles at VHF. End-fed whip antennas have exactly the same gain, but their radiation pattern is not quite as optimal resulting in slightly worse field strengths in the desired direction.

While Shakespear and Metz are decent products for leisure boats, and certainly better than the crap Glomex produces, they are not top class. If You want he best you should look at Procom and AC-Marine from Denmark and Comrod from Norway. These antennas are on almost every commercial ship out there, just like Sailor radios.

A really good antenna should come with, or at least be orderable with, an N connector.

/Marcus
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Old 17-03-2013, 19:37   #82
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Hereis the info about the integration of APRS and Winlink2000. The first time you do this using just your Kenwood radio without a computer, you really freak out

http://www.winlink.org/aprslink
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Old 18-03-2013, 03:34   #83
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

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Hereis the info about the integration of APRS and Winlink2000. The first time you do this using just your Kenwood radio without a computer, you really freak out

http://www.winlink.org/aprslink
Cool, thanks! Wow!

You're a bad influence on me! I will order these Kenwood radios this week
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Old 18-03-2013, 10:42   #84
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

It doesn't stop! Here's APRS for iPhone

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/open...360574554?mt=8
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Old 18-03-2013, 10:52   #85
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

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Thanks, but I don't use IThings! (Other than an IPad).

My primary phone is a Nokia N9 running a Meego shell over Linux; much more to my taste.

I do have an Android tablet (a nice thing); it looks like there is quite a good set of APRS apps for Android! APRSdroid - APRS for Android
I will get registered and start playing with it. Maybe let's exchange call signs by PM?
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Old 18-03-2013, 14:03   #86
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

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Thanks, but I don't use IThings! (Other than an IPad).

My primary phone is a Nokia N9 running a Meego shell over Linux; much more to my taste.

I do have an Android tablet (a nice thing); it looks like there is quite a good set of APRS apps for Android! APRSdroid - APRS for Android
I will get registered and start playing with it. Maybe let's exchange call signs by PM?
The world knows my call I have many now though with all that APRS business, but the main one is the boat at KI4CIS-9. My HT is KI4CIS-7. There is also a KI4CIR-7 around on the maps and that is my better half
This is my hood: Google Maps APRS

p.s. that APRS app also runs on iPad I believe... when you have GPS in it

p.p.s. I'm also an iGate now... see here which packets I gated to Internet: http://aprs.fi/#!v=gated&call=a%2FKI...3600&tail=3600
Zoom out a bit and see how amazing the range is...
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Old 18-03-2013, 15:00   #87
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

Great thread guys.

Sorry for the left of field question, but Jedi what exact is this?

I can't see a chimney that needs cleaning
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Old 18-03-2013, 15:07   #88
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Great thread guys.

Sorry for the left of field question, but Jedi what exact is this?

I can't see a chimney that needs cleaning
It's a static dissipator to keep the big bright things away
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Old 18-03-2013, 15:11   #89
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Re: Please Recommend a Quality VHF Masthead Antenna

Ah right! That makes sense. Cheers.
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Old 18-03-2013, 18:42   #90
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I also prefer dipoles but those bogus gain figures drives me crazy. Note how they leave out the most important thing, what that dB figure relates to!

A dipole, per definition, has 0dBd gain, which is 2.15 dBi. Fiberglass antennas are often perfect dipoles at VHF. End-fed whip antennas have exactly the same gain, but their radiation pattern is not quite as optimal resulting in slightly worse field strengths in the desired direction.

While Shakespear and Metz are decent products for leisure boats, and certainly better than the crap Glomex produces, they are not top class. If You want he best you should look at Procom and AC-Marine from Denmark and Comrod from Norway. These antennas are on almost every commercial ship out there, just like Sailor radios.

A really good antenna should come with, or at least be orderable with, an N connector.

/Marcus
In re the N conn, exactly!

And it's easy to remove and solder in a bulkhead N on the back of a radio the same way we used to solder in so 239 conns to Collins and Heathkit replacing the RCA conns

We really need to move beyond the PL259 world as had most commercial radio

S
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