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Old 17-09-2005, 06:00   #16
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Thanks KN--Mounting & Antenna

Great info...I feel like I'm learning a good deal...also feel how much I need to learn. The mount will be in the nav station close to aft quarter berth entrance. Dry. Given my backstay arrangement, I'll probably have to go with the rod antenna.

Question about power. Right now there is only the starter and the deep cycle house. Will the SSB drain enough to warrant a second house battery? (Given daily use of about 30 minutes)
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Old 17-09-2005, 12:06   #17
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30 minutes on receive should not have any affect, but 30 minutes on transmit at full power will draw about 10 amp hours on most radios.
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Old 17-09-2005, 16:48   #18
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Halyardz, a couple of add'l things to chew on...

If buying a receiver, I would urge you to buy new vs. used. It is very easy - and inexpensive - to make small all-band receivers with clever chips that offer lots of features. That's why you see multiple new units that have a SSB offset in the <$200 price range. OTOH these are usually not robust and find life on a boat is often too rough to survive long-term. E.g. it didn't take much for our Yachtboy antenna connection, buried inside the unit, to fail...and it was very difficult to fix it a sturdy manner. By contrast, the all-time favorite marine all-band receiver has been the Sony 2010. (For a thorough review, see http://www2.rnw.nl/rnw/en/features/m.../icf2001d.html). It is beefy, large in form format (compared to the toy receivers), has a large, functional speaker (which is after all a key ingredient), and holds up well for decades aboard cruising boats. You can find these used on eBay and elsewhere. It's been more recently superceded by Sony's SW77 (excellent review at http://www2.rnw.nl/rnw/en/features/m...s/icfsw77.html)

These smaller form factor radios perform best when connected to a 'real' external antenna, and when you shut off the frig and other motor-driven accessories on the boat. An easy/cheap antenna is to simply suspend a taut, insulated copper wire from the masthead to the stern pulpit or similar deckside location, outside the swinging room of the boom and insulated in some fashion, top & bottom (e.g. using simple nylon small stuff). Run the wire belowdecks thru a cheap coax thru-deck stuffing box and to the radio. A headset can often be helpful in screening out engine or other ambient noise when reception is poor, which is often the case with these units.

The advice about choosing an inexpensive ham transceiver is IMO on target; at perhaps double the cost, you have more initial receive capability (receiver sensitivity will be much better), you have multiple ways to filter out adjacent noise, you can use that same simple antenna, and you've included an upgrade path that, after passing a few tests, will allow you to talk to people all over the face of the earth, get wx f'cast info that is current, and so on. The -50 transceiver is a popular choice but that doesn't mean it's a 'best choice'. I would suggest you consider a used Icom 706, which has a very small form factor, a removeable face plate (which means you only need to mount a tiny panel in an accessible spot at the nav station), and it is the defacto ham choice for all marine applications aboad boats who can't afford a 150W Icom 802.

I'd like to suggest an alternative to eBay when buying a used transceiver. It's good to hear that others are having generally good experiences with this...but how do you know YOU will? Instead, I'd suggest you at least consider buying a used ham transceiver from a reputable ham radio retailer/authorized distributor. The price will be higher but, for the added cost, you will be assured the unit has been visually inspected, all sub-components tested and adjusted to factory specs (this should be done every few years to EVERY ham radio), and you get a short-term warranty. An excellent source for this kind of choice is AES (http://www.aesham.com).

Good luck on the prep you're involved in...but don't forget, the most important step is to stop researching and prepping and actually shove off. Sometimes we all forget that... <g>

Jack
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Old 17-09-2005, 23:16   #19
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I agree with the suggestion to get the radio from a local ham store like Ham Radio Outlet. Hands on is always comforting, and the support you get will be worth the extra expense. Just go in and browse. A lot of hams are sailors, and usually have some good advice about what works and what does not. THe extra features that were mentioned (bells and whistles) are nice, but the need for them is subjective. If I am working a contest, and there is lots of QRM (man made interference), or I am working a busy band like 40 meters, it is nice to be able to narrow things down a bit, but I have had no problem working over 200 countries with my bare bones Yeasu 747. Even the TS 50 has more bells and whistles than the Yeasu. The real down side to the Kenwood, is the multi function keys. When you are working under redlight, or if, like me, your eyes are not what they used to be, figuring out which of those tiny buttons to push, and in what sequence can be a real chore. As I have said before, for marine use, the Icom is the standard, but, the others will work just fine.
Of course, going back to your original question, if you just want a receiver, they are cheap enough new, that used makes no sense. New on EBAY for one of these radios IS worth the savings. Very little to go wrong with the deal, and most will have manufacturers warrantys.
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Old 15-01-2009, 11:01   #20
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JR,

You already are smart enough. You just need to take the test after you study alittle. Don't sell yourself short by buying a receiver only type radio. If you get a transceiver it will keep its value longer. Icom, Kenwood and Yeasu are all good brand names and they all have receivers that will tune all HF SSB frequencies and then some. Some models even cover the VHF frequencies along with the HF frequencies. That would be my choice. Once you figure out what model you want, you can check with the following companies to see if they have anything in used equipment similar to what you are looking for. They are all good companies and I have delt with them all over the years. Texas Towers 1-800-272-3467 located in Plano, TX: R&L Electronics 1-800-221-7735 located in Hamilton, OH: Amateur Electronic Supply 1-800-558-0411 located in Milwaukee, WI (they also have outlets in Cleveland, Orlando, Las Vegas): Ham Radio Outlet 1-800-444-0047 (New England area). These are a few of the bigger radio outlet stores that sell used equipment.

Hal
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Old 15-01-2009, 15:12   #21
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If we can't convince you to get a transceiver, then this receiver sounds like just the thing you are looking for regardless of what has been said about ICOM's service. The R-75 is a basic receiver that will cover 30KHz to 60 MHz, USB, LSB, AM, S-AM, FM, RTTY. It is a very nice looking receiver and does a very good job. It is relatively small and very light. If you decide to purchase this receiver, make sure it comes with the ut-106 DSP unit for digital signal processing. It should be included at no extra cost. The unit price at Texas Towers in Plano, TX is 639.00USD. You may find different prices at other outlets. All usuall disclaimers apply.
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Old 15-01-2009, 19:39   #22
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Getting back to the original request:
Sangean ATS909 Shortwave Radio
It is available on Amazon for less but the desctiption is better here.

This radio consistently gets rave reviews and there is a tweaked version of it also available here:
Super Sangean 909
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Old 15-01-2009, 20:16   #23
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And so another three-year old post gets answered as if it was only asked yesterday....
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Old 16-01-2009, 16:18   #24
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Damn...and I spent time digging out those links again!
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Old 16-02-2010, 06:29   #25
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how much hassle is it to get a HAM license? And is one necessary if you don't live or cruise in the US? FCC has no jurdisdiction here.
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Old 16-02-2010, 07:21   #26
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Ham license.

Quite easy nowadays.
No more Morse Code required.
Just multiple choice questions from a national databank.
The US license can be reciprocated in many countries and islands.

Get the book:

"The ARRL General Class License Manual"

or stusy online here: HamTestOnline™

Just study the questions and answers.

Find an examiner on line here: ARRLWeb: Exam Session Search
Pay $14
Pass.
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Old 16-02-2010, 07:53   #27
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That doesn't sound too scary. And having a radio setup here could be handy, anyhow. I had learned Morse Code waaaaaaay back in my Boy Scout days for some merit badge or other, but glad it's no longer needed.

Still a question, though. How can I get a US license if I don't live in the US? If I don't have a US license, then there is no license to reciprocate. hmmm...

update; I just found out there is a licensing group here, and no reciprocity with anyone else. Basically, to me it looks like a way for a few local ham operators to fund their party kitty by selling renewals every year.
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Old 16-02-2010, 08:04   #28
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If you are not a U.S. citizen then you don't need a U.S. license. Instead you need a license for whatever country you are a citizen of. If you are a U.S. citizen who is simply not living in the U.S. at present then you DO need a U.S. license. There are U.S. tests given outside of the U.S. in many places at many times. If you can't find such where you are currently living then you will probably have to return to the U.S. to take your tests, or at least find someplace nearby where you can take the U.S. test.
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Old 16-02-2010, 08:06   #29
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I am a newbie to short wave, ham, marine radio. This site below has some useful info on the Sangean and Sony receive only radios.

ABC'S OF SHORTWAVE RADIO RECEIVERS SHORTWAVE RECEIVER REVIEWS WORLDBAND RADIO

michael
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Old 16-02-2010, 13:17   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
If you are not a U.S. citizen then you don't need a U.S. license. Instead you need a license for whatever country you are a citizen of. If you are a U.S. citizen who is simply not living in the U.S. at present then you DO need a U.S. license. There are U.S. tests given outside of the U.S. in many places at many times. If you can't find such where you are currently living then you will probably have to return to the U.S. to take your tests, or at least find someplace nearby where you can take the U.S. test.
Well, thanks, but that doesn't make sense at all. I am a U.S. citizen who lives in another country, and has no plans to live in the U.S.

So, I definitely do not see how I need a U.S. license to operate a radio outside the U.S. The FCC doesn't have any control over radios outside the US as far as I know.

Or am I misinterpreting this?
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