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jb1528 11-08-2011 11:34 PM

Bristol 32 Radar mount
I'm considering adding radar. I have an aversion to mounting it on the mast so I am looking at mounting it at the stern, either on a mast braced to the stern rail or a backstay mount.

Given the limited deck space around the aft hatch, I'm wondering what others have done or what was inherited when they aquired their boat, and if the setup is satisfactory?


sck5 11-09-2011 08:38 AM

I have a 33 and had it on a self levelling mount on the backstay. Never again! It worked fine in Chesapeake Bay but once I got into rough weather out in the Atlantic it hit the stops on every roll and tried to rip itself out of the transom. It is on the mast now.

jb1528 11-09-2011 09:11 AM

That's interesting. Do you remember what brand the self leveling part was?


distraction 11-10-2011 04:31 PM

radar mount
I have mine mounted on a pole near the transom. Its on the Strb side, near the cleat. It has two support struts that run sideways and forward. I bought the pole, had a fab shop weld the mount at the top, and ordered the brackets, struts and base from Garhaur. It works really well, and doesnt detract from the lines. I can send pictures if your interested.

jb1528 11-10-2011 09:03 PM

The pole and the radome mount and bracing are easy and I get that part. What I want to see is the bracket on deck. There is precious little room by that aft cleat. Did you have the mast base custom made also. I would love to see pictures of that. I am interested.


sck5 11-11-2011 09:37 AM

I had a questus self levelling mount and a scanstrut. it was the base of the strut that tried to pull out of the transom. It has two bolts on the plate that comes with the strut - would have been better to have 3 or 4. In any case I like it better where it is now. It works better for seeing things far away on the open ocean though it doesnt work so well for seeing close in stuff.

jb1528 11-15-2011 08:43 PM

Thanks for the information everyone. It has helped me make a decision.


KindOfBlue 11-15-2011 09:42 PM

Why not the mast? After lots of research, that's where we mounted ours on our Bristol 38.8. What it came down to after doing the research was that the added height on the mast gave better performance. The argument about scanning the sky for airplanes and the sea for fish when heeled over made a lot of sense. But I don't see a loss in performance when we are heeled over. I also don't see a loss of performance in detecting close range items. I can honestly say that it has never missed picking anything up. We have the Garmin HD scanner.

When I was thinking about it and looking into the best options, I wasn't concerned about the added costs of installing on a pole or on buying a backstay mount. I was willing to pay for the best solution and weighting and comparing trade offs. I understand physics and know what a moment is, so I understand what added weight aloft can do too. I ended up installing on the mast because I felt that gave the best performance and I don't regret it.

jb1528 11-15-2011 10:01 PM


I agree! I think the mast is a great place. I just didn't want the bother of unstepping the mast and all that, plus, I don't go offshore. I'm a Puget Sound/ San Juan Island guy so the added range isn't that important.

Good input and rational for that location though. There is precious little real estate on deck aft of the cockpit for much anyway so that in itself is a good reason for the mast location.

Thanks so much. Next winches.


KindOfBlue 11-15-2011 10:28 PM

For what it's worth, I installed my radar scanner on the mast without unstepping. I installed with the stick up. It takes a few trips up and down the mast (must do in the water). The only downside, which is a definite downside is that without unstepping the mast you need to drop the wires down the mast without padding or a conduit so they slap around.

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