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Old 12 November 2002, 04:29   #1
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Does Any One Know About These

Hi Guys

I am looking at getting an EPIRB for the new season but its a bit of a mine field knowing what the hell to buy. I have just seen this one. Its less than £100 but does any one know if its any good. I suppose any thing is better than nothing.

http://www.allgadgets.co.uk/ag/produ...pf%5Fid=AG3836

Julian
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Old 12 November 2002, 04:37   #2
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I Have seen this B4

Hi Julian,

I've seen this b4. As a matter of fact i have bought a similar one for my RIB.
However, I asked a friend of mine, who's a wiz kid on marine elctronics (after I bought it unfortunately), whether this would actually work or not and he said that I should had spend £400 or there abouts and get a proper EPIRB one not a toy.
Well still got the toy (and have not used it so I don't know whether it works or not).
As you say'is better than nothing' but you will only know if it works when 'heaven forbit' you are facing with an emergency situation.
My recommendation go for the proper EPIRB - I will next year
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Old 12 November 2002, 05:06   #3
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EPIRB

Morning Manos

Thanks for that. I thought the same really. Its seems to cheap as all the others are £300 - £400. Will look at some of the others.

Julian
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Old 12 November 2002, 05:10   #4
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Epirbs are not marketed very honestly!!


Epirbs are not instantaneous alerts unless you are forunate enough to have one of the 4 satellites over head at the time?? In reality it may be upto 2-3 hours before the coast station recieve the alert.

The 121.5Khz epirb are very cheap but are pretty much a waste of time. They are not registered and the coastguard will ignore the alert unless a second means of alerting the distress is recieved such as a second 121.5KHz epirb set off later in time (Tony Bullimore for example)

The 406 Mhz epirb is more expensive unit but has to be registered so provides vessel details etc to rescue centre who will initiate a SAR operation on reciept. Most 406's also transmit on 121.5 Khz due to the better accuracy for locating the beacon.

However, The 121.5 Khz signal will still only indicate the vessel to within a 10 mile range so finding a small rib in this size area would be time consuming. In reality when the SAR operation gets within the 10 mile area they would attempt to communicate by VHF (helpful to have a handheld if getting on a liferaft) or alternatively use radar and SART transponder if fitted to distress vessel to home in on the casualty.

Hope this gives you a better understanding of the systems

Regards
Karl
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Old 12 November 2002, 05:26   #5
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Hi Karl

It certainly does. Thanks for that.

Julian
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Old 12 November 2002, 07:34   #6
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Julian, consider this.
It goes without saying that we had the best euipment money could buy for our Around the World, but when it came to the crunch an EPIRB would have been a waste of time as it only indicates a problem of indiscriminate type. The Coast guard could have launched a full air search and dropped as many life rafts as they wanted but it would have been a waste of time. We NEEDED to speak to a Doctor in order to save Steves life.

Two questions have to be asked before we go any further.

1/ You are in the safest boat in the world so why should you be in any danger?
When Charles had his problems in the English Channel this year he would have been better off being able to speak to a person who could give him the assistance (and assurance) he require.

2/ The cost of a decent EPIRB is about the same as Sat Com. You have the call cost's but at least you can contact home/friends when you do get delayed offshore and people back home start to worry and they do not contact the rescue services.What would be best for you and your families?

This is always going to be a "hot topic" but for me the cheap EPRIB and a telephone would be my prefered suggestion.
You cannot put a price on your own safety and this is one item that in a perfect world you will never need to bring out of your locker Alan P
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Old 12 November 2002, 07:41   #7
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KarlT, 121 EPIRBS can be programmed with owner detail and I think you are talking about the old ones. Also, a SAR @10,000 feet
and 200mph will see you at 10 miles with no problem> Except in FOG and poor visabilty which means that the plane / helo would not be flying anyway. There are fors and against this topic.Alan P
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Old 12 November 2002, 08:12   #8
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Hi Alan

Yeah I see your point. That should save me a few quid then. Are you going to the AGM at the end of the month

Julian
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Old 12 November 2002, 10:01   #9
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Falmouth Coastguard will act on a 121.5 signal, not necessarily launching a full scale SAR operation immediately but they will begin tracking and investigating the signal and if it received a second time they will act. Donít forget that military and commercial aircraft also monitor 121.5, as well as passing satellites.

The 121.5 will not provoke the same response as a 406 but will alert HMC and if alerted they can use the signal to fix on your position.

Most UK RIBsters rarely venture further than 50 miles to sea so it is my opinion that a 406 is over the top for most UK RIBsters. It can also take up to 3 hrs before the CG are notified of a 406 signal.

If you are going to spend some cash, I would recommend a DSC up grade for your VHF. When you hit the BIG RED button on your DSC it will send out the same info as a 406 (Inc lat and long if linked to your GPS) and will continue sending it until it is cancelled. It will also send it to all other vessels in the area with DSC (Inc all commercial shipping) who can either assist or forward your mayday to local CG. Donít forget that like a text message on your phone the DSC digital signal will have a greater range than a normal voice call. You still need to put out a manual mayday as well.

For £100 your 121.5 will back up your mayday and allow the SAR to locate you once in range. With the density of shipping around the channel, irish sea and north sea I think a DSC unit and maybe a 121.5 are ample. A 406 is fantastic but big dollars, okay if you can afford it but if not DSC, spare w/proof hand held VHF and a 121.5 should do the trick.

I also agree with Mr Pridy about that Sat Phones, their now pretty small and relatively cheap, and worth considering.

Also donít forget your mobile. I have a w/proof ericson and on RB4 team ribex had a prob with their mariner. Mayby 20 odd miles offshore they were able to speak to an engineer ashore on the dog and bone. Could have as easily been the CG.

Toby
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Old 12 November 2002, 10:14   #10
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Hi Toby

Many thanks for your help.

Julian
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