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Old 28-01-2010, 20:35   #1
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Satellite Radio Coverage in the Northern Pacific

Anyone tried using satellite radio when sailing from California/Mexico to Hawaii or from Hawaii to Alaska? I know satellite radio works great in Mexico from seeing it on friends boats but I'm thinking about getting one for the trip to Hawaii and then Alaska. I know according to Sirius and XM it's not covered but it works so well in Mexico I thought I'd see if anyone had firsthand experience?

-Todd
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Old 28-01-2010, 21:04   #2
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It worked for us the whole way from Vancouver to Glacier Bay Alaska, but I can't speak for the open water portion.
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Old 29-01-2010, 21:51   #3
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Sonrisa, were you using Sirius or XM ?
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Old 30-01-2010, 00:03   #4
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Sirius.
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Old 30-01-2010, 05:27   #5
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The footprint of both Sirius and XM satellite radio is only the United States, Canada, the upper third of Mexico, and parts of the Caribbean; it does not cover Hawaii.
SAt Radio Footprints: Sirius (left) & XM (right)
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Old 30-01-2010, 10:35   #6
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We use XM in Alaska. We as a fishing fleet have a long history with XM. Fishermen are very inventive....:-)

Going North does not seem effect the signal. Going west does. About 159 degrees west or 160 west is about as far as the regular antenna's work. Those marine antenna's are garbage. You have to be able to aim at the horizion. Looking up does no good up there.

The regular marine antenna's do not work. You have to be able to aim for the horizon. That is the key. We all used the small home units for years. Believe it or not, we got great reception with a stainless salad bowl behind it. They would last 1/2 a year or so in the Bearing Sea.

XM Radio Home Antenna


We found the amplified ones a lot better. The 1st generation was the PRO500 and we had sealing problems with them. But our antennas are subject to winter Bearing Sea conditions. The PRO600 looks a lot better.

XM Radio Pro 600 Commercial Amplified Antenna

These will work anywhere from the end of the Aleutians to Nome,and anywhere to the east from there.

Do not call XM and ask, the are not allowed to broadcast outside their area.

Hope this helps!
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Old 30-01-2010, 19:16   #7
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That information helps me a lot. I will never be going that far north and I'm just interested in coastal BC and SE Alaska so it look like I will have no problems with either one. Now, one more question. Is the weather information from either of them of any value to the sailor? I mean just the weather available of the broadcast XM/Sirius, not the subscription weather.

John
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Old 30-01-2010, 22:23   #8
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Get a couple of the el cheapo $10 antenna's and you will be stylin'.

In Alaska we use VHF weather that will probably be available everywhere in the area's you are going, But I would ask, maybe another thread.

Sideband ch: 4125 has weather many times a day. It is excellent.

If you do not have a side band, get a kaito ka1103, Electronics. Great deals on eBay!

We use this in Mexico to pick up all the SSB nets and get our weather this way.
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