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Old 08-10-2015, 07:56 PM   #21
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Can we get by safely with hand held radios or do we need to have a fixed mount one and thus probably a new antenna too? We are on Lake Michigan.
Don't know what the situation on Lake Michigan is, but where we boat a radio with a good "reach" is pretty essential. Handhelds won't do that although you can connect them to a tall antenna for at least extending the distance the radio "sees."

So for us we have two fixed-base radios on the boat, one at the lower helm and another at the upper helm even though we never drive from up there. We also have a good waterproof handheld.

The handheld is very useful when I go fishing in the dinghy, for example. I'm not going far, but it can be beneficial to be able to talk to the main boat from time to time. It's also part of our ditch bag that we would take with us if we should ever have to get off the main boat in an emergency.
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Old 08-10-2015, 08:13 PM   #22
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We have a fixed GME(Aussie brand) with DSC, main unit at lower helm, slave unit at FB, and it provides intercom. I recently bought a Uniden handheld as backup and dinghy/shore to ship communicator, it seems to work very well.
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Old 08-10-2015, 08:21 PM   #23
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Thanks for all the input. We have purchased a new fixed mount for upper and lower as of today. Hand held will be in near future.
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Old 08-11-2015, 07:19 AM   #24
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That's an easy answer. Without a doubt, fixed amount.
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Old 08-11-2015, 07:54 AM   #25
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Best thing about fixed mount is you know where it is at all times
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Old 08-14-2015, 12:07 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cinlamb View Post
Thanks for all the input. We have purchased a new fixed mount for upper and lower as of today. Hand held will be in near future.

I think you'll be happy and well served with this set-up.


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Old 08-16-2015, 07:34 AM   #27
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"Handhelds transmit at 5 watts, fixed units at 25 watts."

However BOTH are power limited on some channels.

IF bridges or locks are part of your cruising , the hand held with an upright antenna may be far better than a huge antenna laid down.
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Old 08-16-2015, 01:47 PM   #28
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Fixed mounts typically perform better than handhelds. Handhelds bring mobility to VHFs.

What's more important, mobility or performance? I prefer both and redundancy so I have 2 fixed mounts and one handheld for the dink or cockpit use.
Agree with Al, they are so inexpensive now, you should have both.

We assisted in a rescue two years ago where a mid 20' Whaler had capsized in building seas. The boat was equipped with a fixed VHF and a waterproof handheld. One of the occupants recovered the portable radio and issued a Mayday call. The Coast Guard heard the initial Mayday but had difficulty communicating with the portable VHF. Fishing less than a mile from the incident, we were able to talk directly to the survivor and determine their location. We responded along with another smaller boat that was fishing with us and who pulled the three occupants from the water. Without the portable radio, it might not have had a positive outcome.

That's pretty cheap insurance.
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