View Full Version : EPIRB question
04-20-2005, 10:19 AM
Ok, i know very little about epirbs, and by little, i mean nothing. . .
is this a good unit??
ACR RAPID FIX 406 GPS INTERFACE EPIRB CAT I WITH AUTOMATIC DEPLOYMENT ???????
04-20-2005, 11:53 AM
I bought the ACR Globalfix w/the built in GPS cuz I wanted to be able to take it from boat to boat. The guy at byownermarine.com says he sells 9 w/the GPS to 1 w/out. I went w/the manual deployment as well. Good luck and may you never use it.
04-20-2005, 03:43 PM
I've had several epirb's and (thankfully) never had to use one. I have an automaticp-dpeloy GPS and a manual-deploy GPS. I think having the internal GPS is the way to go. Here's why:
How many elex/elec things on you boat have $****** the bed on a fishing trip due to corosion in the electrical connections? It happens all the time, even to the self-proclaimed maintenance czars. When you need that epirb to fire off a mayday, you want it to give a lat/long immediately. When you are out sharkin' in May, the water is plenty cold enough to kill you. The hour it takes for a non-GPS epirb to give the CG AirSta a good fix may mean the difference between Shark making a post and Shark being the subject of a post. Go with the internal GPS and go with ACR. I have both ACR and McMurdo epirbs and the recent McMurdo fiasco makes me a bit unnerved about them.
A good internal GPS epirb costs about $1K. How much would you pay to have your butt (and your kids one day) pulled out of the ocean once you're in it?? I don't think auto/manual deploy makes much difference for the type boat you have, but internal GPS makes a big difference, in my opinion.
Bill, as a former Coastie maybe you know the answer to this. When an EPIRB transmission is recieved, is it immediatly tranfered to a local CG station? or does EPIRB Command ( sorry forgot the real name) take a few minutes to verify and make the phone call on the Epirb registration. Then, Do they launch the Chopper Immediatly, or give it a little while to figure out what's going on? (assuming they have received the coord)
04-20-2005, 07:35 PM
Here's what a CG Rep told me. When they receive a satellite signal they receive an identification code that is unique to that particular EPIRB. They input that code into their computer and call the emergency contact number on file. Meanwhile the GPS info is coming from the EPIRB. If there is no answer by phone as to the origin of the signal (why a signal of distress was made) they look at the coordinates and dispatch with haste.
They also make regular attempts to contact the vessel by VHF (which is why you furnish a boat name when you register) before and while they are in route.
04-21-2005, 06:59 AM
John, bought the Globalfix couple months ago. I was told Rapidfix(interface) will give a 1 time instantaneous position when deployed and that's it. So, if your out there for awhile the original pos. is all the cg will have to go on. THe globalfix may take up to 2 minutes to get a fix but continues to transmit current location. Think I've got this right. If your pricing units give Landfall Navigation a look, thought their prices were reasonable, their shipping fast. Tim
04-21-2005, 08:26 AM
A CAT II (manual deployment) will save you money, thats the kind that I have. Of course mine is a 151 which is basically worthless now. Guess i need a new one.
04-21-2005, 11:35 AM
Guys, thanks for all the replys. . .this is a piece of equipment i never want to use, and after some more though on it, it is a piecec i dont want to skimp out on because of $$$
04-21-2005, 05:23 PM
Sorry for the delay, my laptop drank half my bud last night and I had to buy a new one today.
The epirb send a signal, regardless of whether or not it has a gps, immediately upon activation and that signal immediately displays in the opcen nearest the signal (satellite). The difference between GPS and non-GPS is the location of the signal. If you have 406 w/ GPS, the signal and position will be displayed almost immediately after activation. If its a 406 w/o GPS, the satellites within view of the signal must generate LOPs in an effort to hone in on the position, much like a radio direction finder using several radio stations to achieve a fix. Depending on the number and arrangement of satellites at the given time, a LOP fix can take minutes or hours.
The Cg does not launch helos at the first indication of an epirb activation without doing a little checking. they call the contact numbers, try to verify the position and if everything looks like distress, they scramble the whistlin' ******can to go find you. There are far too many false epirb activations to send a helo for every one. they try to check it out. If its a confirmed distress or undetermined distress, then they go looking. When you factor in the time between activation and fix, phone calls and deciding to send the bird, the $300 or so difference between GPS and non-GPS is pathetically minor, especially if you are out there in early or late season in colder water and fewer boat around...with kids. I'll spend the cash several times over before I'll take the chance.
04-21-2005, 07:55 PM
Tuna Taxi originally wrote:
I'll spend the cash several times over before I'll take the chance.
Thats the conclusion i have come too. Thanks for the extra inside knowledge too. Some cool info to know.