EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 36 Old 03-13-2013 Thread Starter
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EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising

I can't decide which of these two devices is best for my intended purposes - mid-Atlantic coastal hopping, no more than 100 miles offshore. I don't want to spend the money for both.

The benefits of the PLB is lower cost and ability to clip to my life jacket or harness for a fall overboard. The disadvantage is shorter battery life when activated and need to keep antenna above water for transmission.

The benefit of an EPIRB is extended signal, automatic activation, and ability to function by floating in the water by itself. The downside is initial cost.

Your thoughts?

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post #2 of 36 Old 03-13-2013
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Re: EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising

Are you single handed? If yes then PLB, if not then EPIRB.
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post #3 of 36 Old 03-13-2013
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Re: EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising

I bought this model. Rave reviews and fair price. I am a singlehander.
ACR PLB-375 ResQLink+ Personal Locating Beacon with 406 MHz Floating PLB, Built-In GPS, Strobe and 121 MHz Homing Beacon
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post #5 of 36 Old 03-13-2013
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Re: EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising

I would buy as many PLBs as you can afford. More the merrier.

Btw the EPIRB doesn't have an extended signal. The only difference is the battery life is rated at 48 hours instead of the PLBs 24 hours.

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post #6 of 36 Old 03-13-2013
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Re: EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising

We have both, thats mainly because PLB didnt have sophistication when we purchased EPIRP. I would go for PLB and if you can afford it get two. One for vest and one for the ditch bag.


We have two of the 2881
ACR 2881 ResQLink+ PLB Personal Locator Beacon
We have 1 2842
ACR Global Fix Pro 2842 Cat I EPIRB


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post #7 of 36 Old 03-13-2013
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Re: EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising

Quote:
Originally Posted by jameswilson29 View Post
I can't decide which of these two devices is best for my intended purposes - mid-Atlantic coastal hopping, no more than 100 miles offshore. I don't want to spend the money for both.

The benefits of the PLB is lower cost and ability to clip to my life jacket or harness for a fall overboard. The disadvantage is shorter battery life when activated and need to keep antenna above water for transmission.

The benefit of an EPIRB is extended signal, automatic activation, and ability to function by floating in the water by itself. The downside is initial cost.

Your thoughts?
As with Life Rafts, the value of the difference between the devices, and their relative costs, cannot be evaluated as clearly while standing on a showroom floor as they can while standing in waste-deep water in one's cockpit. Buy both. They are cheap insurance. For example, see GPS Store
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post #8 of 36 Old 03-13-2013
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Re: EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising

i use spot so my momma knows where to send the wreath and balloons


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post #9 of 36 Old 03-13-2013
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Re: EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising

S/V HyLyte has it right. You'll be out of VFH range and you should have a PLB for those on watch and an EPIRB for the vessel. What is your life worth or that of your spouse/GF. I'm former AF Rescue and those with working beacons were found quickly. With no active signal or radio calls to go on we just start a search pattern based on your last know location. At 500' and 3/5 seas a person is very difficult to spot, at 6/10 seas extremly doutful.
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post #10 of 36 Old 03-13-2013
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Re: EPIRB or PLB for coastal cruising

I got a PLB b/c I crew/race on a lot of different boats and needed something that was for ME not my boat, which may be sitting peacefully at the dock while I'm in the Atlantic.

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