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  #1  
Old 01-30-2010
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Vhf/fm

I have A combiner by shakespear that uses my antena for both VHF/FM signals.
I recieve a signal through the FM but not the VHF. All the fittings are ok I have bypassed the combiner with the same result.
So my question is, is it possible for the VHF radio to be working fine and not geting a VHF signal while the FM works ok?
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Old 01-30-2010
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First of all, the VHF radio IS FM. It's VHF/FM, which is used on the marine band. I think I know what you mean, though....your AM/FM broadcast radio is getting a signal, but the marine VHF isn't.

Easy to test: take the splitter out of line. Connect the antenna directly to the radio. Tune to a local NOAA weather frequency.

Though splitters usually work OK, I don't like them....on principle. Your marine VHF radio is a safety item...perhaps the most important aboard. To compromise it in any way...even to introduce a slight possibility that it might be damaged or might not work properly....is silly IMHO.

Get a separate FM broadcast antenna.

Bill
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Old 01-30-2010
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Right that is what I tried and the VHF didn't pick up the signal.
So I thought originaly it would be the radio.
I talked with Shakespear and of course they told me to replace all the fittings. Did not make sense to me.
I talked to ICOM who makes the radio and they told me to replace the antena.
Gust want to be clear on this before I ship the raido back for warrenty because nobody could give me a strait answer on why one could get a signal and the other could not.
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Old 01-30-2010
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As Bill said, those things are not a great idea. Take it out of the line and see of the VHF starts to work. If not, it could be the VHF, the feedline or the antenna. If it does work, the splitter is trash.

If you can't receive anything at all on the VHF, not even NOAA, but you can on AM/FM, I would guess the splitter is the most likely at fault. Unless the VHF is completely shot. So keep testing.

If you take the splitter out and still no joy on VHF, find a handheld VHF and connect it to the feedline. There are BNC to PL259 adaptors at Radio Shack. If that works, you have a VHF radio problem. If not, you have a feedline or antenna problem.

Next test, replace the feedline with a short, cheap one from Radio Shack, just for testing. If that works, then the feedline is bad. If not, the antenna is bad.
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Old 01-30-2010
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Yes I have confirmed that it is not the splitter.
The handheld VHF is a good idea that will tell me if it is the VHF radio or not
Great thanks.
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Old 01-30-2010
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I'd also point out if the splitter fails, it can take out both the VHF and FM radios... and one mode of failure can allow the VHF's transmitter to fry the FM radio's receiver.
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Take your VHF out of your boat and try it in another boat. Use the antenna and cable on a "Known good" vessel, and then see if you can pick up any signal.
You must know someone that will let you test your radio on their boat.
That would at least rule out the VHF.
Fm radio needs very little antenna to pick up a signal. My Fm antenna is a stainless mast unit from a car that is wire tied under the combing.
Good luck
Kary
S/V Mariah
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Old 01-31-2010
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So with all troubleshooting aside, those methods explained will work nicely.
Is that the kicker AM/FM is able to pick up a much weaker signal then the VHF?
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