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OT - Radar Question ???

1494 Views 14 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Riverman
My Robalo came with a Furuno B/W radar 2KW dome system
It works ok, I can see other boats but....
I cant figure out how to find birds with it??
What settings to change??
Not even sure if this older unit is powerful enough for birds??
Second, I have the Raymarine C-80 next to it with GPS and Sonar
Would a newer 4KW dome tied to it show bird activity?
The guy at West Marine thought I would have to go up to a 4KW open array to really locate birds at any distance
He said the open array units have a smaller band width which breaks out smaller targets
What do you guys think, or have seen with your radar units??
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I've got a 4kw 2.0 horz beamwidth 48 mile JRC open array and it finds them to 4 nm just fine. My 2kw dome was worthless for birds but was fine for navigation. He's not lying to u.
It actually is dome vs array because its the length of the antenna that matters. U've got 4' of antenna (or more) on the array vs 2' (at best) on a dome and most domes r 18". Now build a dome that is 4' in diameter and u'll match the array. IS binocs r the bomb as we use them to "backup" what radar is showing us but there's no way running in the open ocean u're going to beat that swinger on the hardtop for finding them.
Antenna dimension is only one of the factors
ultangler, w/all due respect, the size of the antenna is a parameter in performance as u yourself stated. So the "negative" is negative in my book. Certainly there's more to performance than sheer size but my generalization stands.
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