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Old 12-03-2012, 07:29   #1
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VHF transmits but won't recieve

I put a West Marine VHF in my boat last summer, and it worked great. Then sometime in the fall I realized I wasn't really hearing any radio chatter anymore, but I hadn't taken the boat out since Thanksgiving, so I hadn't paid much attention.

Well, I finally got around to messing with it this weekend and sure enough, I'm not recieving anything at all -- not even weather transmissions.

The guy down the dock from me says I'm transmitting loud and clear, but no reception.

I changed out the plug on the anntena cable, still no change. And yes, I adjusted the squelch. I can get beeps from the speaker and squelch static, but that's it.

I spent the evening reading the instruction manual to see if there's some sort of filter mode or privacy mode I might have accidentally kicked on, but the radio doesn't seem to have anything like that.

Any ideas?

All I know to do is to stick a portable anntena on it next weekend to see if that makes any difference. If it doesn't, the radio thankfully has a three-year warranty.
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:34   #2
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

If it transmitting OK then your antenna, coax and connectors are fine. If you are getting squelch static (receiver noise), then your speaker is OK so that only leaves a dead receiver circuit.

I would getting out the receipt and warranty form right away!!!
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:38   #3
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If you transmit successfully on the antenna but can't receive and you've checked the speaker then it's likely that the receiver is fried!

Do you have any chance of pulling the unit out and temporarily connecting it into a neighbor's antenna and 12VDC for a sanity check?
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Old 12-03-2012, 08:46   #4
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

Bought new last summer? Still in warranty? Or in the extended warranty from a credit card?

If there's a warranty, pull it and have West check it before that expires.
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Old 12-03-2012, 08:52   #5
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

According to the owner's manual the West Marine radios carry a 36-month warranty. I should be able to get an exchange.
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Old 12-03-2012, 08:54   #6
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

Let us know how it turns out!
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:12   #7
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

Guy down the dock.....

You could have a break in your coax and the guy down the dock could hear you. What is the VSWR? If a guy 5 miles away could hear you that would be a different story.

Try hooking a foot or few up to the center conductor of your radio coax connector then listen for weather.


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Old 19-03-2012, 07:50   #8
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

West Marine exchanged it in store although they were sure to point out that it was a "courtesy" exchange, and that they really should have sent it off for testing and repair instead of exchanging it, then insisted that I buy the $13 Platinum Protection plan for the new radio. It must have been the reciever circuit on the old radio because the new one works great.
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Old 19-03-2012, 08:29   #9
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

Maybe the $13 bucks bought you a swap, as opposed to sending the old one out for r&r.
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Old 23-03-2012, 09:10   #10
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

Or.......the $13.00 was the actual cost of a radio.......Just say'in..........
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Old 23-03-2012, 09:32   #11
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

Quote:
Originally Posted by D.D. View Post
Or.......the $13.00 was the actual cost of a radio.......Just say'in..........
You may be on to something.
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Old 21-12-2012, 15:44   #12
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

I had this same problem and solved it. A relatively new Unidem transmitted, but only received when the squelch was down in the static zone. After replacing the radio, antenna, paying for on line advice, I finally called in a tech. He didn't understand it either, called friends, ran tests, and finally asked me if I had added any electronics. No, I hadn't. We shut down everything and suddenly the radio worked. Turns out I had rested my sat phone on the top of the VHF on a sloping panel. That in itself was not a problem. But, when I plugged in the charger, the sat phone battery charger put out enough RF to blanket the radio. Go looking for an RF intereference source.
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Old 21-12-2012, 16:12   #13
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

Welcome aboard tkeithlu and special thanks for such a helpful first post!

As your experience points out, RFI can come from "simple" yet unexpected sources and can be very difficult to diagnose and track down.
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Old 22-12-2012, 04:52   #14
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Re: VHF transmits but won't recieve

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, tkeithlu.
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