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Old 07-31-2017, 05:48 PM   #21
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Also remember that there is a GPS mushroom that has to be installed and of course the VHF antenna. If you can swing it, I highly recommend a dedicated AIS antenna rather than messing with a splitter. It might seem harder to install, but maybe not as much as you think. Installing the splitter takes time, they are relatively expensive, and you need to get power to it as well. And you will get better results from both your AIS and your VHF with separate antennas.
The issue of antennas is one of the things that is holding me back. From my research in the past, RM doesn't have a great solution for integrating a Class B AIS transceiver into their "legacy" products. Every time I have tried to work through the RM integration morass I get confused. This is one of those areas where I may be better off finding someone who can do it for me and consider it money well spent.
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Old 07-31-2017, 05:51 PM   #22
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.........Also remember that there is a GPS mushroom that has to be installed and of course the VHF antenna............!
Some brands seem to have an internal GPS antenna.
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Old 07-31-2017, 05:53 PM   #23
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Just bought a transceiver from Defender. Came programmed and with free ant.
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Old 07-31-2017, 05:53 PM   #24
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Some brands seem to have an internal GPS antenna.

That would significantly simplify that installation step.
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Old 07-31-2017, 05:55 PM   #25
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Mine is Vesper XB-8000. Has wi-fi, so can be controlled by mobile device. Am using Coastal Explorer on laptop, so both AIS data and GPS data is supplied to laptop by the Vesper. Makes for 1 less cord going to the laptop. I like it, bought from Defender when they were on sale. Info was provided to Defender, Mmsi and some Vessel info, so was ready to install on arrival.
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Old 07-31-2017, 05:56 PM   #26
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Another vote for the Garmin AIS 600 if you're already using Garmin MFDs. I have this setup and the nice thing if you stick with Garmin is that when you ever go to update software; you plug in one SD card and it updates all of the Garmin devices on the network.
I definitely love the transceiver. It augments radar and just adds another layer of safety. In NY harbor you will be in a target rich environment and it'll come in handy.
Also as you mention; its very cool that friends & family can track your progress, it is sort of like a real-time float plan if you've ever sent one to someone before a big cruise.
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Old 07-31-2017, 06:04 PM   #27
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... Also remember that there is a GPS mushroom that has to be installed and of course the VHF antenna...
And has to be connected also... the PO of my boat did not take this extra step and limited his effort to connect the VHF antenna but left the gps wires unplugged... brilliant!

L.
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Old 07-31-2017, 06:08 PM   #28
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AIS does not add another layer of safety, it adds another layer of information.

Those in the safety networks can argue that too much info and too many displays to look at actually diminish safety in the amatuer world.

I have been through NY harbor many times, stay out of the mainstream, and look ahead and it isnt all that big of a deal. There is only about 10 miles that you need your head on a swivel.
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Old 07-31-2017, 06:25 PM   #29
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Transceiver all the way. AIS is only as good as the number of boats transmitting.

It's not always a welcome view point, but I think receive-only is only being a Taker from the system. With a transceiver, you are a Giver and a Taker. Please be a Giver too.
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Old 07-31-2017, 06:31 PM   #30
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That's the equivalent to saying that looking at highway traffic info without you constantly feeding the system is wrong.

Even if all you do us travel back roads, avoid major highways, refuse to call in the once and a great moon big issue, etc...etc...

Please, as a commercial small vessel guy....saying AIS is a good thing is great...saying you are a taker and not a giver is way out of wack with the system the way it is.

My exception may be Western Rivers which I dont have experience in.
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Old 07-31-2017, 06:40 PM   #31
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I don't understand the comments that receiving without transmitting is selfish. It makes no sense to me. Remember, the majority of boats out there have neither.
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Old 07-31-2017, 07:09 PM   #32
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I simply was adding a new radio when one with an AIS receiver was on sale. But I will likely add a transmitter at some point fairly soon....once I stop shooting the money gun at other stuff. We have pretty busy waterways around here. The Houston Ship Channel intersects the ICW and the Galveston Ship Channel and the Texas CIty Ship Channel all in the same spot!!!...aka Bolivar Roads.
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Old 07-31-2017, 09:48 PM   #33
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...AIS does not add another layer of safety....

If it helps you see other vessels, and other vessels to see you....how can that be considered not adding safety ??
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Old 07-31-2017, 11:05 PM   #34
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If it helps you see other vessels, and other vessels to see you....how can that be considered not adding safety ??
I think we are getting into semantics here and what exactly is considered a "layer of safety". I don't think anyone would argue that it doesn't add safety.
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Old 07-31-2017, 11:26 PM   #35
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That's the equivalent to saying that looking at highway traffic info without you constantly feeding the system is wrong.

Even if all you do us travel back roads, avoid major highways, refuse to call in the once and a great moon big issue, etc...etc...

Please, as a commercial small vessel guy....saying AIS is a good thing is great...saying you are a taker and not a giver is way out of wack with the system the way it is.

My exception may be Western Rivers which I dont have experience in.

See, I said it wasn't always a welcome view :-)

I think AIS is quite different from your traffic example. For traffic reporting to work, all that's needed is a sampling of cars traveling a route. Once you have some level of sampling, there is little to no incremental gain by getting more samples, i.e. having more participation

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I don't understand the comments that receiving without transmitting is selfish. It makes no sense to me. Remember, the majority of boats out there have neither.

If one has receive only, they have benefited only themselves by utilizing mine and other people's transmitted AIS reports. They have not provided any benefit back to anyone else. If one is going to utilize the data that others and I have provided, it would be nice if they reciprocated and provided useful data back about themselves so the rest of us can benefit too.
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Old 07-31-2017, 11:30 PM   #36
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I think we are getting into semantics here and what exactly is considered a "layer of safety". I don't think anyone would argue that it doesn't add safety.

I think AIS enhances safety. However, as more and more recreational vessels have AIS transceivers, it becomes easier to pay more attention to the plotter than looking out the window. The same is true with Radar.
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Old 07-31-2017, 11:50 PM   #37
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I also have a Vesper XB-8000. I wanted the ships and tows to see me as well as me seeing them. I've only had it about 8 weeks but I've traveled the intracoastal from Galveston to Mobile during that time I will tell you that the captains of the ships and tows like you having the transmit capacity. They radioed me frequently requesting vessel type and discussing vessel placement in the channel. Its good to be seen by them.
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Old 08-01-2017, 01:17 AM   #38
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I have the Si-Tex MDA 1 Class B Transceiver. New they are just over $500 and can integrate with NMEA 0183 or NMEA 2000. Works nicely with my Garmin chartplotters and tablet with Coastal Explorer.


I have this unit too and it works well with Coastal Explorer. SiTex retailer set it up for me as required but it came with the ProAIS software that they used to set it up. This software program also allows me to set the unit on silent mode and stop broadcasting, such as at anchor or in a marina. I like that feature.
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Old 08-01-2017, 01:18 AM   #39
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Some brands seem to have an internal GPS antenna.
That is correct, I recently installed a Si-Tex MDA-1 Class B AIS Transceiver with a built in 50 channel GPS, internal antenna and a socket for an optional external antenna. It is located in an overhead electronics box and operates perfectly. It has its own Galaxy 14' antenna.

It was connected to an otherwise all-Garmin suite via N2K, and was instantly recognized by all other devices. AIS targets are visible on all plotters.

I have a Garmin VHF200 radio that is also connected via N2K. Touch an AIS contact on any plotter and you automatically have the option to directly initiate a call over the VHF. This is a really useful feature. I like it!
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Old 08-01-2017, 01:28 AM   #40
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Remember the saying: "Tis better to give than to receive".
With AIS, perhaps they are equal.
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