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Old 05-15-2006, 03:19 PM
Striper Sniper Striper Sniper is offline
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 34
Default Marine radio (VHF) set up

I recently bought a new marine radio for my boat. It is my first as they are just starting to get popular with the striper fishermen on the lake I fish here in Indiana. My question is about " standing wave" . I have heard guys talk about it, and know it has to do with antenna length and the length of the cable going to the antenna. I was also told that if it was incorrect it could burn out a part on my radio. Could someone explain what "standing wave" is and how to make sure it is correct? Thanks in advance, Striper Sniper
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Old 05-16-2006, 07:51 AM
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Roccus Roccus is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Reading, Mass/Rings Island
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getyourself a good marine antenaea, preferably 6 DB, but 3DB will do unless you want to transmit as far as possible, mount it as high as possible, when installing the radio give it it own fused circuit and you will be fine..
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Old 05-16-2006, 08:43 AM
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JakeF JakeF is offline
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Ah,,, something I know about, lol,, I could go into all the technicalities of Standing Wave Ratio (SWR), but Roc is right,, new antennas are set pretty well from the factory and you don't really have to worry about em. Besides, you'd have to seriously alter the length of the antenna before it would be off enough to burn out your finals in the radio.

If you're really concerned about it, your transmit/receive range seems to be severely hampered or you are dealing with an old antenna, I'd stop in a Radio Shack and pick up a cheap VHF SWR meter for about 10 bucks.
Adjust antenna for the lowest SWR possible (1:1).

In a nutshell, SWR is the ratio between the amount of power leaving your radio and the amount of power that is actually coming off the antenna. The length of the antenna is critical to maintaining a balanced resistance for the frequency you're transmitting on. If your antenna is not the right length for the frequency you're using, the resistance will be too high and it will heat up the amplifier in your radio. An SWR reading higher than 1:4 would be cause for concern, and the whip on most antennas can be adjusted in and out of the base to fine tune it. The optimum SWR reading is 1:1, meaning that you're actually getting out of the antenna the same amount of power that you're putting into it. Length of the coaxial cable itself actually has very little effect on SWR, as long as it is well shielded and the connectors are in good shape.
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Old 05-16-2006, 06:44 PM
Striper Sniper Striper Sniper is offline
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 34

Thanks a bunch guys I appreciate the help. SS
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marine, radio, set, vhf

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