Recent

Author Topic: Vhf radio  (Read 445 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Northdogboy

  • Ultra Light
  • **
  • Posts: 41
  • Karma: 1
Vhf radio
« on: January 09, 2018, 01:02:01 AM »
So I want to get a VHF for fishing this summer.  I'd feel a lot safer with one.   But what should I look for and what's a good price for one?


Offline Red Rocket

  • Old School
  • *****
  • Posts: 704
  • Karma: 9
Re: Vhf radio
« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2018, 11:21:44 AM »
I bought a Standard Horizon waterproof, floating VHF radio 6 or 7 years ago. Seems to me it was about $150 but I understand they have them with built-in GPS now so an emergency signal can be tracked. I'd pay a bit more and get that one.

Some people I've talked to aren't using them any more on the basis that a cell phone is OK but I disagree. If you end up in the water chances are you didn't plan it and to try and fumble out a cell phone (maybe in a waterproof bag) and call the right place, rather than an instant mayday on channel 16, is a mistake IMHO. About 5 years ago another kayak fisherman and I rescued a guy who had flipped his touring kayak in heavy boat traffic in the Eastern Gap channel between Toronto Island and the mainland. I was able to directly inform the other vessels (including a freighter) what was happening and it all turned out well. Without the VHF it would have been close to impossible to achieve the same communication efficiency.
Don

Hobie Outback
Toronto

Offline PikeCreek

  • Old School
  • *****
  • Posts: 1189
  • Karma: 19
Re: Vhf radio
« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2018, 04:05:48 PM »
Don, there are a bunch of us that still use the VHF radio religiously.  Easier than using a phone.  Quick, and though you might be hundreds of yards away from each other it is still like your out fishing together.   We also use it to help with what color, tactic, where fish biting, success, depth of water catching fish, lots of information that can make your day even better. 

When we are out fishing MOST of us are helpful and want to see each other do well and catch fish.

http://pka.canadiankayakanglers.com
Hobie Adventure Island, Hobie Revolution, Hobie PA 12, Hobie Quest 11

Offline Red Rocket

  • Old School
  • *****
  • Posts: 704
  • Karma: 9
Re: Vhf radio
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2018, 05:55:43 PM »
Absolutely, Rich, but un-named others have told me they don't take them out any more. I always take mine on big water (Ontario, Simcoe, etc.) and will take it while fishing in a bird bath if my fishing partner takes his, for exactly the reasons you mention. The added bonus is hour-by-hour and even minute-by-minute weather reports. I remember being out on Lake St. Clair a few years ago with one of your buddies (Craig, I think) the day after the BCC when he scrambled me and another guy in off the water when he checked the weather report and an unexpected thunderstorm was forecast. We got off the water just as the rain started and missed the real excitement completely.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2018, 06:53:36 PM by Red Rocket »
Don

Hobie Outback
Toronto

Offline Red Rocket

  • Old School
  • *****
  • Posts: 704
  • Karma: 9
Re: Vhf radio
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2018, 06:01:43 PM »
What I don't get is that guys will spend $300 or more on a rod or a paddle then say a VHF radio is a waste of money. Apologies to all if I appear judgmental on this but a safety item is never a waste of money. Besides, the chatter on 68, 71 & 72 is entertaining.
Don

Hobie Outback
Toronto

Offline Ravyak

  • Old School
  • *****
  • Posts: 561
  • Karma: 14
Re: Vhf radio
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2018, 08:37:34 PM »
North Island Communications in Campbell River would be able to give you some advice(maybe somewhere closer too, not sure what part of the Island you are from).

North Island Communications is where we rented one from when we did a trip to the island a couple years ago. They had 2 versions of hand held, a cheaper model that we got and one that was a bit more expensive. Can't remember the differences but I am sure they could explain what would work best.

I definitely wouldn't fish offshore around the island without one. Too easy to get into trouble out there and its the only way to communicate in many of those places.

Offline Ravyak

  • Old School
  • *****
  • Posts: 561
  • Karma: 14
Re: Vhf radio
« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2018, 11:04:23 PM »
You got me interested so I started doing a little digging.

From the options I saw I would want one that is waterproof/submersible(they seem to most commonly come in IPX7 which is 3.3 feet for 30 mins but a few have slightly better waterproofing).

The next choice is floating vs not, floating seems like an obvious choice for a kayaker but tethering it is also an option.

Power is one of the important things. I would stay away from the 2.5 watt models, get a 5 watt or better. Most of the decent ones have it so you can select 5, 2.5 or 1 watt.

Next thing is battery type and charger types, some are built in battery packs, some take AA/AAA batteries etc. That is kind of personal choice.

Some have the ability to listen to multiple frequencies(2, 3 or 4 is common), could be nice if you want to eavesdrop on guide boats etc.

Some of the high end ones also have GPS capabilities, FM radio etc. All extras that obviously make them cost more.

Uniden, Standard Horizon, Cobra and Icom were some of the main manufacturers that I found and they all have a variety of offerings. One of the units that really caught my eye was a new model HX210 by Standard Horizon. It has IPX7 water resistance, floats, 6W, 2.5W or 1W power setting, a large battery(1850 mA), 12V DC and 110V AC charging cables, charges in 3 hrs, FM radio and I believe 3 channel watch capability(manual states this, website doesn't for some reason). That is about every good function that I would want and I found them on Cabelas US website for 130 USD so pretty reasonably priced for all those features.

Edit: Oh and you might find this website helpful.

https://www.westmarine.com/choosing-a-vhf
« Last Edit: January 09, 2018, 11:08:30 PM by Ravyak »

Offline PikeCreek

  • Old School
  • *****
  • Posts: 1189
  • Karma: 19
Re: Vhf radio
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2018, 07:31:02 AM »
I have had a couple of the Standard Horizon VHF radios.  Make sure you get 5 watt.  The lithium battery on the SH radios lasts pretty long.

http://pka.canadiankayakanglers.com
Hobie Adventure Island, Hobie Revolution, Hobie PA 12, Hobie Quest 11

Offline Red Rocket

  • Old School
  • *****
  • Posts: 704
  • Karma: 9
Re: Vhf radio
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2018, 10:28:11 AM »
Mine is a HX750S and here are the specs right off the Standard Horizon website:

- "Floats and offers good transceiver performance, outstanding audio performance, good battery life." Practical Sailor July 2009

    6 Watt Transmit power
    Ergonomical shape
    Volume & Squelch indication on display
    SOS Strobe light
    Speaker Mic Jack
    Preset key (Maximum 10 channels)
    700 mW Loud internal speaker audio
    NOAA Weather Channels
    Built-in thermometer sensor
    Selectable Power Output 6/5/2/1 Watt
    1150 mAh Rechargeable Li-Ion battery
    110 VAC and 12 VDC Chargers with cradle included
    Keylock
    Case dimensions: 2.44"W x 5.57"H x 1.61"D

As I said, I would add GPS to it. In practical terms, I've never run the battery flat, even on long weekends when it's on for maybe 20 hours but while you listen to it all the time it's on transmission times are relatively short and that's what uses the juice. I velcro mine to the tray in my Outback underneath my left elbow - easy to access and easy to hear (with my old ears) there.

It's been many years since I took the marine VHF course so can't recall the operational rules but all radio equipped aircraft are obliged to monitor the emergency frequency 121.5 at all times while in the air (I don't think that's the case with with marine but don't know for sure). Anyhow, while I do monitor the emergency channel 16 from time to time I'm usually on the agreed upon recreational channel on the theory that if another boat in receiving range is in trouble it'll likely be so far away that I'll never get there in my yak before a power boat or the coast guard. Remote areas are a whole different animal, though. I think mine has a scanning function but I've never used it (that I can remember). The main thing is is to have one. Sounds like the price is about what I paid for mine years ago.
« Last Edit: January 10, 2018, 10:31:32 AM by Red Rocket »
Don

Hobie Outback
Toronto

Offline dwc67

  • Ultra Light
  • **
  • Posts: 27
  • Karma: 3
Re: Vhf radio
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2018, 10:46:46 AM »
my first handheld was an uniden. excellent radio and i carried it my ditch bag in my boat. buddy dropped it in lake o

 my second was a cobra 6 watt. i never did really trust it because some times i could not get a reply to a radio check.

i went back to uniden and bought a mhs235 and the speaker lapel mic.

it was explained to me that a 5watt handheld can be heard anywhere on the greatlakes by either canadian or american coastguard

my own story about why you want a vhf
i was returning to a harbour launch when the coast guard closed the harbour because they were towing in a boat. they announced it on 16
5 boats stopped and 1 kept going into the harbour, the coastguard were still giving the guy sh** when they opened the launch back up and i came in


Tags: