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post #1 of 36 Old 10-29-2012 Thread Starter
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hand held radio for man overboard

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Originally Posted by coronado 30 View Post
crew needs a passport and personal locater beacon
Is that an EPIRB that will transmit your location to the rescue people? Well it might take a long time for them to get to you and the boat that you fell off of doesn't even know that you are missing, nor do they have any way of communicating with you.

I would want to have something like a Yaesu VX-7R "http://www.universal-radio.com/catalog/ht/0777.html" with me at all times, along with an inflatable PFD in anything more than calm seas. It is water proof for a few hours, and it can be wide banded to go on the marine band. A radio on the boat would be kept at full volume on a quiet frequency all the times.

If I fell off at night I could radio the boat and look at the navigation lights to see which way the boat is pointed and then guide them back to me.

I'm not experienced enough to know how it would work in rough seas. Would the big waves prevent me from seeing the boat? Wouldn't I be able to see the boat when I floated to the crests of the waves and then tell them where to go?

Last edited by steel; 10-29-2012 at 11:21 AM.
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post #2 of 36 Old 10-29-2012
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Re: hand held radio for man overboard

If you fall off your boat and you are out at sea the chance of your death is about 99%.
Do not fall off the boat.
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post #3 of 36 Old 10-29-2012
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Re: hand held radio for man overboard

I am assuming you are solo sailing*
Also, talking rough seas? If its anything but flat you will die. Your only tiny bit of hope would be that your boat turns into the wind without its skipper and sails to a relative stop allowing you to catch up.. but even at 2.5 knots the chances of you catching the boat and making it onboard are slim to none.
Seriously if you fall off your boat your most likely going to die. Sorry to be so pessimistic, but its the truth.
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post #4 of 36 Old 10-29-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: hand held radio for man overboard

No not solo sailing! Did you not even read my post?

You can stay alive for hours in rough seas if you have a good life jacket.
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post #5 of 36 Old 10-29-2012
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Re: hand held radio for man overboard

Rule one - stay on the boat. At night on deck - pfd, harness, and tether.
Rule two - avoid one person watches. Look after each other.
Rule three - be visible - SOLAS tape, strobe light.

Check out - Cold Water Boot Camp

At night you should be on 16, perhaps on a dual watch with vessel traffic services.

I carry a PLB

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post #6 of 36 Old 10-29-2012
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Re: hand held radio for man overboard

If you're in the water, it's not you seeing the boat, it's the people in the boat seeing you. Even in mild chop it's hard to see a man overboard. In rough seas, it's almost impossible from a boat.

A good life jacket will keep you alive for a while, provided hypothermia doesn't set in and your will to survive overcomes whatever Mother Nature throws at you. Highly trained and experienced Coast Guard pararescuers have lost their lives at sea. When Mother Nature turns up the heat, every human reaches a point where they lose the battle.

Your first defense against dying in the water is doing everything you can not to end up in the water. Sailing harnesses and tethers, avoiding leaving the cockpit unless absolutely necessary, knowing your capabilities, etc., but first and foremost, doing everything you can to keep your vessel out of harm's way.
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post #7 of 36 Old 10-29-2012
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Re: hand held radio for man overboard

Why would you pick something like the VX-7R instead of just getting a real handheld marine VHF, where you can just select a channel and start transmitting? Seems like (as my grandfather used to say) you're taking the long way around the barn.

Oh, yeah. And like the others said... Spend money on a good harness and jackline system to keep you on the boat first. After that you can think about what to do if that fails.
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post #8 of 36 Old 10-29-2012
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Re: hand held radio for man overboard

I use a submersible Standard Horizon hand held VHF.
The newer ones even float so cold scared hands won't lose it.
I keep one in my pocket when single handing and wear an inflatable pfd w/ harness, even in the calmest weather.
I don't use a tether in calm conditions unless I'm in open water, but that's probably not the smartest option.
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post #9 of 36 Old 10-29-2012
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Re: hand held radio for man overboard

Steel, if you are planning to take electronics into the water, a "waterproof" rating is not good enough. Those ratings are all based on o-rings and other seals that deteriorate over time and with use. By all means, start with that, but keep the h/t in an EWA pouch or similar waterproof pvc pouch. That's easily inspected and trusted, and inexpensive to replace, compared to the electronics.
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post #10 of 36 Old 10-29-2012
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Re: hand held radio for man overboard

Sometime try jumping in the water with a VHF and see how far you can be heard. Best guess is less than 1/2 a mile. The transmit power is too low, and the height above the water will be measured in inches. A PLB however can reach a sattelite and a properly equipped yacht can track them to within about 6 foot.

Sure a VHF has its uses, but getting people out of the water isnt one of them.
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