RE: EPIRB vs. VHF (followup)

From: Jim Paugh (James.Paugh@eng.Sun.COM-DeleteThis)
Date: Thu Apr 16 1998 - 14:41:46 PDT

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Date: Thu, 16 Apr 1998 14:41:46 -0700
From: James.Paugh@eng.Sun.COM-DeleteThis (Jim Paugh)
Message-Id: <>
Subject: RE: EPIRB vs. VHF (followup)
X-Sun-Charset: US-ASCII

Just from personal experience, my Uniden 940 has held up perfectly
after a season of use. I've got it in a dry bag (plastic) which totally
keeps it dry. It's taken a beating as well. My safety pack got ripped
off my back on a bad landing last season, which didn't bother the radio
at all (the leash saved it for me).

~Jim Paugh

> From Thu Apr 16 13:36:47 1998
> Return-Path: <>
> Date: Thu, 16 Apr 1998 13:36:18 -0700
> Originator:
> From: David Veach <veach@LANQuest.COM-DeleteThis>
> To: Multiple recipients of list <>
> Subject: RE: EPIRB vs. VHF (followup)
> X-Listprocessor-Version: 6.0c -- ListProcessor by Anastasios Kotsikonas
> X-Comment: Windsurfing Discussion Mailing List
> X-Lines: 186
> To all: thanks for the replies.
> Here's my conclusions after much web research today (haven't got much work
> done though <grin>)
> EPIRB - No, it's just not practical. Class B (the cheap ones) operate on a
> freq. that's full of non-emergency signals and you can bet that here in the
> Bay Area there's a lot of "noise". (maybe so much so that the monitoring
> stations don't even pay attention to signals generated here?) This system
> was obviously designed for open ocean operation with satellites detecting
> the signals and relaying the "hit" to ground stations which then rely on
> the registration information to begin an "incident investigation" and
> inform the coasties. They will call the phone number(s) on your registration
> to try to determine if the vessel is actually "underway" and what the planned
> course is, who's aboard, etc. Assuming you _could_ register yourself as a vessel
> you could still easily go hypothermic before this process ever got help
> to you. The web site Jim provided below sealed this for me.
> VHF - Yes. I can confirm help is on the way. As Jim mentioned below, you can also
> summon help from other sources. Several of the models I've researched seem to be
> (claim to be) waterproof. As someone else mentioned, this may not mean submersible.
> The Standard Communications HX255S (the one on sale at West) has a 3 year guarantee
> that says "If your Horizon radio fails for any reason, including water damage, during
> normal use in the first three years, Standard will repair or replace it free, without
> hassle or charges - period." I like how this sounds, I just need to confirm that
> windsurfing falls under "normal use". the ICOM M1 looks good too. Then there's the
> Uniden 940, very compact and only $179. I'll have to get in to West to compare them
> all side by side.
> Now that I've decided on VHF, I'm really interested in what we, as the windsurfing
> community, can come up with as a protocol for our needs. Things monitoring at the
> launch site, picking a channel for "buddy" communications, etc.
> Thanks again, -d
> >
> > here's another safety equipment question for the group...
> >
> > This is the year that I'll drop the $$$ for a rescue
> > device. The question is which one? Yesterday I got
> > a sale flyer from West Marine and they are paying the
> > sales tax on purchases this weekend in addition to their
> > sale. Looks like it's time to do it.
> >
> > Does anyone have any experience with either of these two
> > devices? They're both on sale at West.
> >
> > 1) ACR EPIRB "Mini" B2ILS Survival Kit $229.95
> > manually activated
> > audible beep (so you know it's sending)
> > strobe/flashlight (cool, if it's a good enough strobe)
> > small enough to fit in a fanny pack (I think)
> > comes with a whistle (nice touch)
> >
> > 2) Std. Communications HX255S Handheld VHF $259.99
> > 5 watt (5 watt, better than most I think?)
> > 16ch priority scan
> > 3 year waterproof warrantee (I guess that covers leaks?)
> >
> > Given that these two devices are about the same cost, I'm
> > wondering which would be the best purchase for windsurfing
> > rescue purposes. I think the main advantage of the EPIRB is
> > that it provides the coasties a direct beacon to locate you.
> > (This model also has a strobe which I think I must have so
> > that saves me another purchase) Does anyone know if they
> > constantly monitor that freq. and will automatically come
> > for you if you turn it on? If I have to "signal" distress
> > in order for them to come looking for the beacon then I'd
> > have to carry both the VHF _and_ the EPIRB. If that's the
> > case then I guess I'd go for the VHF and hope I can direct
> > them to me.
> >
> > The advantage I see in the VHF is I'll know I've got help coming
> > and I can talk to them about my situation. That would make me
> > feel a heck of a lot better floating around alone than turning on
> > a beacon and hoping somebody is tracking it. I'll still have
> > to purchase a strobe. (Of course the VHF offers the opportunity
> > to "chat" as more of us have it but that's not really a safety
> > issue)
> >
> > I mostly sail the bay if that makes a difference. I think your
> > in pretty deep, especially after dark, whether you're heading out
> > the gate or drifting in the middle of the bay.
> >
> > I haven't heard much talk about EPIRB, what do you all think?
> > I'd appreciate some feedback (especially about these two
> > models since they're on sale) features I should be considering, etc.
> >
> > Thanks in advance, -dave

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