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Old 28 January 2017, 14:15   #1
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Can anyone recommend a distress beacon?

As above can anyone recommend a good distress beacon?

Just want something I can strap to my life jacket in case of emergencies!

Cheers!
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Old 28 January 2017, 14:47   #2
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Luke,

You wont go far wrong with any of the big name PLBs - McMurdo, Kannad/Safelink, ACR/ResqLink etc. Things to be aware of: Battery Life - some have 5, some have 6 yr batteries - most (all?) are not user replacable. Beware old stock - if its been on the shelf for a year it may only have 4 yrs left. Finally there might still be some non-GPS units around that just give a rough area to the CG - thats probably not worth the saving now.

Then its probably down to size, cases, taste, and of course price!

[EDIT: Ocean Signal, seems to be claiming the smallest devices, longest battery life, and it seems is available at the lower end of the budget]
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Old 28 January 2017, 14:50   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poly View Post
Luke,

You wont go far wrong with any of the big name PLBs - McMurdo, Kannad/Safelink, ACR/ResqLink etc. Things to be aware of: Battery Life - some have 5, some have 6 yr batteries - most (all?) are not user replacable. Beware old stock - if its been on the shelf for a year it may only have 4 yrs left. Finally there might still be some non-GPS units around that just give a rough area to the CG - thats probably not worth the saving now.

Then its probably down to size, cases, taste, and of course price!


Okay cheers, I'll shop around those names
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Old 28 January 2017, 15:11   #4
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Don't forget - floating or not.

Floating doesn't help when deployed (unlikely to hit satellite if bobbing on the surface) but floating helps if you drop it!

Some have lashing strobes
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Old 28 January 2017, 16:47   #5
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As SS says, floating good.
Think cold hands, shock, confusion, injury, panic?
Imagine watching your PLB sink.

Some are sold with floating pouches, see line 2.
Some are intrinsically buoyant, for me that was the critical factor.

There are more experienced people than me on here, they may have different viewpoints.
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Old 30 January 2017, 05:36   #6
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Hi Luke. My wife and I purchased a PLB each because we were using our rib up in the Hebrides on holiday each year and there is far less traffic up there than down here around Anglesey where we normally use the boat.
I did a lot of research on prices and capabilities. I can't access the document I did as I am away from home at the moment but I can remember what we purchased and why.
The Kayaking forums were a great source of information and I spoke to a lot of Kayakers about their PLBs. As the first reply by Poly says, there is a wide variety on the market.
Believe it or not, some don't float, why is pretty crap if you've just hit a semi submerged object and you've been ejected from your boat (unlikely to occur but possible). We figured that if you had to use one of these devices in anger then it was more likely than not that we'd be in the water unexpectedly at speed so a strong tether for attaching to the life jacket was a must. The one we chose was ACR Resqulink plus which was equal to the other top makes such as McMurdo, Kannard and others.
The difference was that Force4 Chandlers had an offer on them at the time where you got some free accessories with them. They were about £240 each and are now £314 each at that particular store. These things Improve all the time so our research might be outdated even though it's only a few years old.
ACR have a website where they detail countless stories of people who have had their lives saved solely because they have been wearing an ACR Plb.
The kayaking forums have loads of information. Good luck with your research and purchase, Phil.
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Old 30 January 2017, 07:54   #7
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I have a McMurdo fastfind & ive just bought an ACR floaty one. I was steered away from the Ocean Signal one by an independent chap who repairs PLBs. The main driver for choosing the ACR was that it floats.
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Old 30 January 2017, 08:43   #8
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The McMurdo has a floating pouch
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Old 30 January 2017, 08:48   #9
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fast find 220 plb with floating pouch 6 year battery made by orolia portsmouth
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Old 30 January 2017, 08:49   #10
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Quote:
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The McMurdo has a floating pouch


Yeah I know, but it doesn't fit in my LJ pocket with the pouch. The ACR is a squeeze, but just fits.
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