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Old 01-28-2014, 10:11 AM   #1
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Air Horns

I will be installing a air horn setup on our 1987 Krogen Manatee as a Winter project. I plan on locating the horn under the pilothouse roof over hang and routing the air hose to the inside. Looking for some "been there done that " wisdom such as will the length of the air hose effect the operation of the horn ? The Manatee center console area is where I would like to locate the compresser as it is weather proof and houses the split system a/c heat pump unit so it is climate controlled. The trumpet on the horn is powder coated brass and I would like to install a screen so creepy crawlers don't nest in it, any ideas welcomed. thanks
Bill
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Old 01-28-2014, 10:47 AM   #2
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I would expect the installation instructions to specify the maximum length and minimum diameter of the air hose.

As for the screen, see if the manufacturer offers it as an option.
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Old 01-30-2014, 02:05 PM   #3
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I installed a pair of Buell air horns a few years ago on our Selene 47. I mounted the horns on top of the pilothouse (the overhang is not big enough to fit the horns under as you suggest). The compressor and reservoir tank (2 gallons) is installed in the lazarette with approx. 35ft of hose run between the tank and the horns. I chose the lazarette location for 2 reasons: adequate space to install the tank and compressor, and compressor noise is located away from pilothouse. One consideration is installing adequate tank size if you choose to install an automatic fog sounder as we did (long blast every 2 minutes). Never had any issue with the long hose run. I believe the hose is 3/8 ID but it is just inexpensive air hose as used for pneumatic tools (Home Depot, Harbor Freight).
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Old 01-30-2014, 04:02 PM   #4
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Thanks Chris, I'm doing a modest installation compared to your Buell set up. I spotted an AFI Marinco system that seemed to fit the budget on EBay. Trumpet is metal not plastic brass powder coated white and small compresser/tank. Thought for the money I'd give it a try. The trumpet is about 9" long so using the roof overhang will work. Plan to angle the trumpet down so water dosen't collect inside and may install a better quality hose than the mfg supplies with the horn. I tried all s/s 12vdc horns , seem to not last very long and marine surveyors seem to dread them as they never work when tested for survey's. Top notch surveyor told me best backup is the horn's that screw on top of a small air bottle, they always work.
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Old 01-30-2014, 04:23 PM   #5
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For a clean sound you'll want to mount the solenoid as close to the trumpet as possible. This gives a sharp cut-in/cut-out of the pressure, and so the sound.
This is how Kahelberg reccomends installation.
Mounting the solenoid near the compressor, depending on the distance and hose dia, will give a sluggish cut-in/out, wimpy sound.
I'm running 250 psi air tanks, thru a 125 psi regulator in the engine room, with 1" hi press hose up to the coach roof to triple trumpets.
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Old 01-30-2014, 08:14 PM   #6
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I like a resevoir as close to the horn as possible. My trawler has a pair of Kahlenbergs that were originally plumbed with 1/4 id inch plastic from the engine room compressor ( a little 12 volt belt driven unit) that was adequate for most situations. On what I call a long blast it would kinda "peter out" at the end. The compressor worked its little piston off just trying to keep up with regular fog signals at anchor. I installed a 4 inch by 18 inch pvc tank close to the horn and replaced the tiny compressor with a pair of 12 volt dc continuous duty permanent magnet compressors designed for offroad jeepers. They are mounted to a dual tank unit with a real pressure switch, all on the forward bulkhead in the engine room. I have a control unit (forgot the maker) that does all of the required horn signals electronically. Fog on the BigMiss is a serious matter, its good to be heard. The bigger you sound the better, to a point.
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Old 01-30-2014, 09:08 PM   #7
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The Coot's compressor and air tank are in the engine compartment, under the pilothouse floor. The solenoid is under the helm and the horns are on the pilothouse roof. Thus, the air lines have a short run. The set-up has lots of capacity. The only time I've run out of air was when I forgot to flip on the compressor circuit.




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Old 01-30-2014, 09:21 PM   #8
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The Coot's compressor and air tank are in the engine compartment, under the pilothouse floor. The solenoid is under the helm and the horns are on the pilothouse roof. Thus, the air lines have a short run. The set-up has lots of capacity. The only time I've run out of air was when I forgot to flip on the compressor circuit.
What kind of fan is that in the top right of the second picture? We've been looking for some like that, for our ER.
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Old 01-30-2014, 09:23 PM   #9
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I have a home depot style pancake compressor in the engine room. Horn is from a highway road tractor. Hose is 1/4" OD polyflow all the way from ER to helm and to horn. I use the road tractor valve with a pull string. Works great even if air tank is at 30psi (normally 100). Plenty loud. So no need to run larger dia hose. The pull string is nice as you can modulate it: A gentle pull gets a gentle tone. Pull hard and it blows loud.

I would like a two tone horn, though.

Pancake compressor comes in handy for other things like dive mask (it is oil-less), inflating the dink, running (little) air tools, etc.

Horn and compressor cost way less than alot of marine specific horn systems.
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Old 01-30-2014, 09:35 PM   #10
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What kind of fan is that in the top right of the second picture? We've been looking for some like that, for our ER.
I don't know. I'll try to remember to check the next time on the boat.
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Old 01-30-2014, 09:37 PM   #11
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...

I would like a two tone horn, though. ...

Horn and compressor cost way less than alot of marine specific horn systems.
Love the sound of my two-tone horn.

Yes, Kahlenberg components are quite expensive.
http://www.kahlenberg.com/products/m...etone-air-horn
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Old 01-31-2014, 08:30 AM   #12
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Just to be clear, our Buell install does have the solenoid near to the horns, even though the compressor and reservoir are located in the lazarette. The horns run at about 110psi. Despite comments from others, we have had no problem with sound level, duration or fading in/out. I think fading is more likely related to inadequate tank sizing. Ours is a very manly horn!!! Highly recommend fitting an automatic sounder if boating in a fog area.
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:16 AM   #13
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I would love to have one of those Kahlenberg horns on my boat, but I can't justify the cost. I have an Ongaro dual trumpet electric horn that sounds good but I have to work on it at least once a year to keep it working. My backup is a canned air horn and it always works. The best thing about the canned air horn is you can point it at whoever needs to be warned about some danger and that person can easily see that it's you blowing the horn.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:20 AM   #14
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The type of horn set the OP is talking about has no reservoir or solenoid. It uses a small compressor, about the size of a soup can, that turns on each time you press the button.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:29 AM   #15
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I don't know. I'll try to remember to check the next time on the boat.
That would be great, thanks!
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:18 AM   #16
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That would be great, thanks!
It looks similar to a lot of the same fans used on the larger Sea Rays a few years back. They were nothing more than 12V automotive fans from smaller cars that use electric fans rather than one bolted to the water pump or aux fans for tranny coolers.

Usually $75 on up and can find them through Advance Auto, Autozone, NAPA....

Though Mark's could be a marine item...I know he has a 24V system too...but then again it still could just be an automotive fan from a bus/truck.

Mark...if you like, throw up a pic of your electrical panel ....and we know you have a good one of those....it may be on there to see what voltage it is (to start)....
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:21 AM   #17
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It looks similar to a lot of the same fans used on the larger Sea Rays a few years back. They were nothing more than 12V automotive fans from smaller cars that use electric fans rather than one bolted to the water pump or aux fans for tranny coolers. Usually $75 on up and can find them through Advance Auto, Autozone, NAPA.... Though Mark's could be a marine item...I know he has a 24V system too...but then again it still could just be an automotive fan from a bus/truck.
Oh ok, thanks for the info.
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:23 AM   #18
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Oh ok, thanks for the info.
Here's the original pic that I got the idea from.
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:23 AM   #19
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Mark...if you like, throw up a pic of your electrical panel ....and we know you have a good one of those....it may be on there to see what voltage it is (to start)....
The E.R. blower runs on 24 volts.

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Old 01-31-2014, 12:26 PM   #20
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Is it the engine room 24V blower? Where does the fan exhaust?
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