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Seamanship & Navigation Forum devoted to seamanship and navigation topics, including paper and electronic charting tools.


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  #41  
Old 11-26-2012
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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by chef2sail View Post
Minnie,

The OP was talking about a $700 budget. I dont know to many life rafts which can be had for that. In addition he has a 25 ft boat.

Heres what I would recommend for $700- ACR PLB abd SH VHF with DSC and AIS

ACR 2880 ResQLink PLB Personal Locator Beacon

Standard Horizon Matrix AIS GX2150 VHF
Yup, I acknowledged in my first reply that a raft was more expensive. A 4 place raft would easily fit aboard a 25ft boat. I've had them in smaller aircraft for island hopping the Bahamas.

The point is that an EPIRB is not going to save your life off the coast of Maine. Totally wasted money, if it is all you have. You will die from hypothermia if you are in the water long before they even decide to come look for you. Literally.

The old saying comes to mind...... Spend too much and you might waste a little. Spend to little and you will waste it all.
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  #42  
Old 11-26-2012
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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

The USCG has “Rescue 21” in your area. It is designed to work with your DSC radio. The coasties have really good radios, powerful amplifiers and transmitters and really tall antennas. I would hazard to guess that there is nowhere in your intended cruising grounds where there isn’t coverage. If you are unsure, contact your local USCG and ask them. I have both EPIRB and DSC. For coastal sailing, DSC would be the first button I’d push. Paulo is mostly correct insomuch that the VHF will work (vary marginally) without an antenna. You can either purchase an emergency antenna or make one yourself with an antenna from an auto parts store and a connector (you will have to have some basic soldering skills). If you are still worried, get a second waterproof handheld VHF to keep on your (or your wife’s person). AIS is great, but it won’t work unless the other boat has a transmitter, and not all fishermen go to that expense. How many large commercial ships do you plan on encountering? Do you plan on sailing at night, in fog or low visibility? EPIRBs are wonderful, but your emergency will still require routing through the USAF in Florida then perhaps a second pass of the satellite to get a fix, then routed to the local USCG, followed by a call to your contact number, then they will try to contact you by radio (and other boats in your area) before they scramble a rescue launch. Why not cut out all the middle men and use your radio first?
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Old 11-26-2012
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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

Thats why I suggested for $700 the PLB and the VHF with DSC and AIS
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  #44  
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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

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Originally Posted by GeorgeB View Post
......EPIRBs are wonderful, but your emergency will still require routing through the USAF in Florida then perhaps a second pass of the satellite to get a fix, then routed to the local USCG, followed by a call to your contact number, then they will try to contact you by radio (and other boats in your area) before they scramble a rescue launch. Why not cut out all the middle men and use your radio first?
Exactly

One should have both, but a VHF is what I would choose for a coastal passage, if I could only have one.

I have this in my ditchbag (or maybe the model just prior to it). VHF, DSC and GPS all in one. I also bought the optional AA battery adapter and keep a sleeve of spare batteries in the bag as well.

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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

My Advice comes from being the guy in the air looking for boats and crew in the ocean, USAF HC-130 working with RCC and the Coast Guard. Get the PLB and make sure it worn, it's much easier to find you if we have something to home in on.
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  #46  
Old 11-26-2012
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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

At this far into a thread it's good to find out what the original poster said...

Quote:
. I intend to daysail and overnight out of Portsmouth Harbor (NH, USA) with cruising trips once or twice a year up the Maine coast for a week or two at a time.
look at a salient point... Below

Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnewaska View Post
You will die from hypothermia if you are in the water long before they even decide to come look for you. Literally.
ll.
A few days ago we discussed the sailing ship Concordias loss off Brazil in 2010 the EPIRB took one hour to send the GPS information to the Brazilians (who then didnt respond to it for 24 hours).
ALL EPIRBS take about an hour to choof the info off. Hopefully the US coast guard then does something with it in under a day...

If there is a threat of hypothermia the first hour is crucial. Absolutely, positively crucial.

If the OP is doing as he says, and not lying to us, and he is costal hopping, costal overnighters, why wouldn't he find it much quicker to ring the CG on a cell phone?

A cell phone in a zip lock bag are waterproof.
An instant response by the CG is more likely. On the coast the CG may be able to get to any scene in under that magical hour.

EPIRBs and PLBs are great. I wouldn't go anywhere without one. But if the OP ONLY HAS $700 and is not lying to us, what way is the money best spent?

I can't see an EPIRB or PLB will outweigh an AIS transponder, which as someone pointed out can be used in fog too... An AIS can be used every day in every navigational situation. In emergency when someone rings the CG they already have the position on their computer, or the last position.

If the boat has sunk and the AIS not working, the phone calls, and flares will still get a rescue quicker than that hour wait.
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Last edited by MarkofSeaLife; 11-26-2012 at 01:52 PM.
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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

Cold water survival info..... just cause it needs to be noted.. again.

Cold Water Survival

Westpac Marine | Hypothermia Chart


Took 3 pages til ya'all brought out the claws.....
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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

You can have both PLB and VHF w dsc for 700 who says you have to chose.

Those of you who boat in colder waters than I do most of the time, do you all carry liferafts?

Question, when you cruise Maine do you all have liferafts? Do you have survival or imersion suits?
Do you have anything special in the raft to keep you warm?

Dave
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Last edited by chef2sail; 11-26-2012 at 02:57 PM.
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  #49  
Old 11-26-2012
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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kjretlaw View Post
My Advice comes from being the guy in the air looking for boats and crew in the ocean, USAF HC-130 working with RCC and the Coast Guard. Get the PLB and make sure it worn, it's much easier to find you if we have something to home in on.
I guess you have a point. The DSC will give you also the position but only when the radio is emitting. If the boat goes down it is easier to bring a PLB unless you bring to the life-raft a portable VHF with DSC.

If so not only he can continue to emit a signal with the position and even if the radio has a smaller range you should not have trouble to pick it up having as reference the last GPS point that the main VHF DSC radio has emitted. The portable radio even will allow direct communication with you and facilitate the rescue.

Or am I wrong?

Regards

Paulo
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Re: Do I Need an EPIRB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
At this far into a thread it's good to find out what the original poster said...
Agreed. However, the OP here has been a bit unclear and argumentative. Jacklines vs VHF w/ dsc and ais vs EPIRB (which OP priced at $700) is really a false choice (or a couple of false choices).

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
A few days ago we discussed the sailing ship Concordias loss off Brazil in 2010 the EPIRB took one hour to send the GPS information to the Brazilians (who then didnt respond to it for 24 hours).
ALL EPIRBS take about an hour to choof the info off. Hopefully the US coast guard then does something with it in under a day...
Any idea if this was an EPIRB or a GPIRB. I would not put the US response to an emergency beacon on par with Brazil. We don't need any more jingoism around here than we've already had of late, but I'd like to see some stats to back up your suggestion that the USCG is not immediately on top of transmissions from registered EPIRBs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
If there is a threat of hypothermia the first hour is crucial. Absolutely, positively crucial.
No doubt about the truth of that statement, but how relevant is it really to the OP? The OP didn't talk about an abandon ship incident or going in the water. The hypothermia comment came as a sort of side shot from someone basically blowing up the whole train of the discusion. Beacons have multiple purposes not involving man in water (think: boat up on rocks, heart attack, major trauma, or abandon ship to a raft or dingy).

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
If the OP is doing as he says, and not lying to us, and he is costal hopping, costal overnighters, why wouldn't he find it much quicker to ring the CG on a cell phone?

A cell phone in a zip lock bag are waterproof.
An instant response by the CG is more likely. On the coast the CG may be able to get to any scene in under that magical hour.
This is really why I answered. There is not going to be much (any?) cell phone coverage down east. You are still working your way in that direction, but you'll find that coast pretty uniquely un / underpopulated by US standards. So, I don't think the cell is a realistic substitute.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
I can't see an EPIRB or PLB will outweigh an AIS transponder, which as someone pointed out can be used in fog too... An AIS can be used every day in every navigational situation. In emergency when someone rings the CG they already have the position on their computer, or the last position.
OP is not talking about an AIS transponder. Best I can tell, he means a SH Matrix 2100 (basically a DSC enabled VHF with an AIS receiver). What sort of coastal VHF reception does the USCG have out there? I imagine it is pretty good simply because they are looking out for the fishing fleet, but I don't know. I still think a $200 PLB on the on watch life vest is simple and cheap and covers risks otherwise uncovered by the other "options" (PLB btw will guide rescuers on site as well). But, hey, you go how you are comfortable -- beyond the basic CG required items -- no one can tell you what is right for you (I imagine that the OP got that point a while back and now we are just doing that dance we call the sailnet . . .).

Last edited by blowinstink; 11-26-2012 at 04:26 PM.
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