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Submission + - House committee moves to block LORANC teardowns ( 1

clanrat writes: "Lawmakers overseeing the Coast Guard approved language this week that would stop the agency from dismantling facilities needed for eLoran, a proposed system that has gained wide support as a backup in case GPS signals are jammed, blocked, spoofed, or otherwise rendered unusable.

In “markups” or adjustments to language in the FY 2015 Coast Guard authorization bill, a House transportation subcommittee proposes to halt the tearing down of stations in the Coast Guard’s old Loran-C navigation system, which was turned off in 2010."

Comment I just completed a project like this (Score 1) 175

Remote site, no infrastructure, high reliability required, etc. We started with bare rock on the side of a channel on the northern BC coast. The only viable option to survive rain fade was C band. So now you're dealing with a 2.4m dish. Operational requirements called for 3Mb of symmetrical bandwidth which needs a 40W BUC. Leads nicely into the next point; power. How are you going to feed this beast? We elected to go with 4KW diesel engines, in a redundant configuration. Don't forget shelters for all this as well. It cost around $15k just to get all of the equipment to the site. Another $13k for fuel to keep it running for 6 months. The hardware was $265k, and 3Mb from Telesat is $35k/mo.

Are there other options? Absolutely. Hughes DirecWay, XPLORnet, Shaw Direct, etc. But they're all consumer grade, unmanaged, asymmetrical, and Ku band which is highly susceptible to rain fade.

As with most things, you get what you pay for.

Comment Re:EPIRB (Score 1) 340

Check out the Thrane&Thrane Sailor Iridium Pilot (ex OpenPort) data and voice comms sytems. Around $5k for the terminal which provides phone and 100kbps-ish internet.

If you need more than that the FleetBroadBand 500 has been very solid for us but the terminal is $16k and data is $9/mb.

Raymarine's new NMEA2000 (seatalk ng) equipment is pretty versatile, but the shiny new E series gear is not very rugged. The C90 is still available and is a solidly built performer. Raymarine also just announced class A and B AIS transponders. Handy having all the sensors on one network, all feeding blended data to all of your plotters.

Stay away from Garmin RADAR. They emit a lot of noise and interfere with VHF. They're priced where they are for a reason.

Standard Horizon GX5500 DSC radio is affordable and works. I run these on west coast 'hard use' vessels with a totally reasonable failure rate. Don't skimp on the coax. It's worth it to pay for LMR200, RG223, or RG400 for your main VHF antenna run, and don't ever ever use those crap Shakespeare compression RF fittings.

EPIRB is nice to have, but someone's got to come looking for it to be of real use. Many parts of the world don't have any real SAR capacity, so its utility becomes a bit moot.

Spot or an equivalent may be a better choice, depending on where you're going, and who you want to keep updated.

Cellular modems and the newer integrated hubs are handy if you've got a good data plan. I've had good success with the 4G NETGEAR MVBR1210C Turbo Hub on littoral vessels. These offer both data and a phone port.

If you do the wifi thing, consider putting a well sealed Ubiquity BulletHP on an antenna up the mast. Very cheap and surprisingly effective radios.

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