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Old 18-07-2013, 14:00   #1
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Self Leveling Mast Radar Mount

I am replacing the radar & mount on MiSamba and would like to know if anyone has any experience with the self leveling mast mount (scanstrut) and if it is worth the extra cash. My experience is with fixed mast mounts and am interested to know if the self leveling mount does indeed provide a more consistent scan image. The radar will mount on the mizzen mast.
thanks
butch
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Old 18-07-2013, 14:40   #2
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Re: Self leveling mast radar mount

Butch,
I just installed one from Waltz Manufacturing and I was very impressed with the pre-sail (haha) support and the product itself. While the mast mount required some shims to fit my mast snug, the mechanism is top rate. I will keep you posted on it's effectiveness in rough weather as fall approaches (Lake Erie is a little quite this time of year....)
Jason
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Old 18-07-2013, 15:45   #3
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Re: Self leveling mast radar mount

The requirement for "self leveling" depends on the sharpness of the vertical cut-off in the radar beam. For instance, we had a Furuno 1720, which uses a scanner antenna that is just a circuit board with clever patches of conducting material on it and the cut off is very gradual. We found that there was no need for a leveling dome.

Later replaced it with an Anritsu (Simrad) radar which has a tidy little metal horn antenna. It had quite sharp vertical cut off, and we noticed a lack of sensitivity athwartships when heeled more than 15 or 20 degrees. In that case, the leveling mount would have helped somewhat... but the effect wasn't enough to warrant changing things IMO. One can always ease the traveller for a while in extreme conditions!

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 20-07-2013, 13:03   #4
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Re: Self Leveling Mast Radar Mount

Little different but, had my Garmin HD self levelling on the back stay at 14ft above water, moved it ti static mount 14 ft above surface on the mast when I had it down for work........ 0% difference in all weather and I pound around in 3-4m open ocean regularly.
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Old 20-07-2013, 13:34   #5
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Re: Self Leveling Mast Radar Mount

I have used several types of radar mounts: Questus self leveling (first class stuff), Garhauer manual leveling (works ok) and fixed mounts both pole and mast mounted.

Some years ago I was sailing on a fixed pole mounted radar (about 12' above the water) in the Chesapeake with 15 kts of steady air (about 10-15 deg of heel) and plenty of targets around. This was with a "circuit board scanner" type Raymarine RL70 radar. Targets 360 deg around were visible as long as they were 1/2 mile away or more. Inside that radius targets off of the beam were less visible (came in and out based on my angle of heel when the scan passed) and inside 1/4 mile not much was visible for 30 degrees fore and aft of abeam.

The foregoing represents the practical effect of the beam not being wide enough vertically to see on a heel for targets abeam. Dead ahead and behind, heel is irrelevant and in between it depends on the azimuth of the target and the degree of heel.

But I concluded that the only time I needed to see targets on my beam at less than a 1/4 mile, the wind would probably be very light due to the fog, so little heel and a fixed mount would work ok. That has turned out to be the case.

David
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Old 11-01-2014, 10:50   #6
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Re: Self Leveling Mast Radar Mount

I highly recommend the WALTZ MANUFACTURING RADAR LEVELING SYSTEM. I have been outfitting my Cal 35 and I stumbled upon the system.

I had not planned to mount my new radar with a Leveling System due to high costs. However, when I saw that I could get a great system so reasonable, I bit.

Don Waltz was a pleasure to deal with, and accommodated me, even custom-making a special bracket arm to mount above my radar to mount my GPS Antenna & secondary VHF Antenna. I have had it on the boat for 2 years, and am very pleased with them and the product... 5 Stars for Quality AND Price!

Capt'n Ricko

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Garmin Radar/Waltz RLS - svsecondwind's JimdoPage!

https://www.facebook.com/CaptainRickoAndTheSvSecondWind
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Old 11-01-2014, 13:21   #7
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Re: Self Leveling Mast Radar Mount

Quote:
Originally Posted by rickusc View Post
I highly recommend the WALTZ MANUFACTURING RADAR LEVELING SYSTEM. I have been outfitting my Cal 35 and I stumbled upon the system.

I had not planned to mount my new radar with a Leveling System due to high costs. However, when I saw that I could get a great system so reasonable, I bit.

Don Waltz was a pleasure to deal with, and accommodated me, even custom-making a special bracket arm to mount above my radar to mount my GPS Antenna & secondary VHF Antenna. I have had it on the boat for 2 years, and am very pleased with them and the product... 5 Stars for Quality AND Price!

Capt'n Ricko

S/V Second Wind

Garmin Radar/Waltz RLS - svsecondwind's JimdoPage!

https://www.facebook.com/CaptainRickoAndTheSvSecondWind
This is a nice recommendation, but does not address the issue of whether or not the leveling mount is necessary. Many of the earlier posts do...

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 11-01-2014, 21:15   #8
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Re: Self Leveling Mast Radar Mount

Originally, I was going to Mount my Radar on a fixed mount on my Arch that I installed... I found this setup and liked it better than a fixed mount and believed it is most likely a benefit.

I have read comments all over the web - whether or not it is necessary. I have never had a fixed Radar on a sailboat to experience a problem with a fixed mount. But, I was responding to a previous post for where to buy one - and if you are committed to buying one - this is a great deal, and I am addressing that.

FROM THEIR WEBSITE

About Us

In the early 1990’s Roger Waltz was delivering a sail boat with a fixed radar mount from Tahiti to the U.S. They were on the same tack for over two weeks on the leg from Rangaroa, French Polynesia to Hilo, Hawaii, at never less than a 20 degree angle of heel. If the light of another vessel was seen at night, the radar and VHF were turned on. Calls on channel 16 to request course and speed of the unidentified vessel would be made, if the radio calls were answered at all, they were not in English. In order to determine course and speed to avoid a collision course they had to drop sails and/or change course to eliminate the heel to enable the radar to reveal the vessel’s position, speed, and course.

In 1993, Roger Waltz installed radar on his own boat and wanted to avoid this type of problem which will occur on any boat with a fixed radar mount that regularly may heel greater than 10 to 15 degrees. The gimbaled radar mounts available at the time were expensive. After consulting with his engineer brother Don a simpler and less expensive device was conceived. Neighbors in Roger's marina requested similar radar mounts for their boats and thus the Waltz RLS was born

Many improvements and modifications have been made since that time. Don Waltz, CEO of Waltz Manufacturing, has the responsibility of manufacturing and distribution of the Waltz RLS. Attention to detail, quality, service and reliability are paramount in our desire to provide a product of unequaled value.

Practical Sailor magazine has awarded the Waltz RLS ‘Best Buy’ among gimbaled radar mounts.

Testimonials

“I have used the Waltz RLS for 10 years on my 47’ sailboat “Austerity” in gale winds and 14’+ seas, It has always functioned properly. The radar has stayed level and stable in these conditions. Best of all, it is easy to install without climbing a mast and takes less than an hour”

L. A.

“While in the Gulf of Alaska in fog with 15-20ft following seas, the wind at 35-40 knots seeking a hole in the rocks on shore to hide in a protected bay we were very thankful we had a Waltz RLS on board, We never lost reliable radar coverage even when rolling to 45 degrees each way as we went through the surf.”

C. D.

“Sailing in the Pacific NW, navigation is critical. Strong currents, extreme tides, strong winds and seas as well as traffic and narrow passages make reliable radar data absolutely necessary, especially at night. Our Waltz RLS has provided us a sense of security and confidence for the past 10 years in reliable navigation in all conditions. We have never lost the radar horizon since installing the Waltz RLS. Thank you for a remarkable product.”

G. H.

“We have sailed 12 thousand miles in the past seven years to and from Alaska and Mexico. We have been in conditions of all extremes, 20+ ft seas and 65 knot winds to flat calm and heavy fog. The Waltz RLS has performed flawlessly. I highly recommend it for all Sailboats.”

T. L.




At any rate, I've got it, and my radar stays Level, for better or worse...


Cheers!
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