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Is adding radar overkill in this situation?

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Is adding radar overkill in this situation?

Old 09-11-2020, 06:48 PM
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Default Is adding radar overkill in this situation?

24' Center Console, New England, 5-15 miles off shore, fair weather boater (but you never know). No plans to go out at night.

Is adding radar (like a Garmin Fantom 18) overkill?
Old 09-11-2020, 07:00 PM
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5-15 out, things can change in a hurry. If you have the budget, add the radar. Since adding one to my boat, I will never own another boat without one
Old 09-11-2020, 07:03 PM
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First time some fog rolls in you will thank yourself
Old 09-12-2020, 06:24 AM
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Originally Posted by DocHoliday View Post
First time some fog rolls in you will thank yourself
Ten years ago we were returning to Newburyport from a weekend stay in Boston on a Sunday morning in the fog. I was only going about fifteen knots when we came into a clear spot about a boat length from a sailboat coming head on. Fortunately we both zigged and zagged correctly. The good news is the wife’s opinion of Radar went from being another electronic toy for me to a must have for the boat. Since then I have never had an argument over electronics that improved our safety net. I’d also suggest Considering including either a passive receive only AIS or a complete transceiver if you plan to use it. Using both gives you the ability to not only see boats but also see their movement vectors.
Old 09-12-2020, 06:36 AM
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Since when has it been bad to be better informed?
Old 09-12-2020, 06:37 AM
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I've been in enough situations in 1/2 to 1 mile off the beach that made me glad I had it. Have seen boats on radar to avoid collision. Use it in good weather to get use to reading targets.
Old 09-12-2020, 07:15 AM
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I have not been out in fog more than a few times but it was always worse closer to shore.
I have to cross merchant traffic sometimes, I use the radar with MARPA to determine speed of the big ships and if I need to speed up or slow down 10-15 minutes ahead of time. I don't want to cross in front too close and I sure don't want to hit its wake too close either .
Old 09-12-2020, 10:39 AM
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You can see weather well past your indicated range, and your cel will likely work at least a few mi offshore if you can't be bothered to look up at the sky (really, to see direction of weather). If you're out in fair weather and light only, you don't need radar for nav safety. Overkill for your stated purposes, but I am willing to bet your boating will change at some point and you'll wish you had it. If you can make the scratch to get it, get it. Time under with any nav equipment = experience, and that's a good thing for when you really need it.
Old 09-12-2020, 10:48 AM
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Idk, but I feel like 15miles offshore is a decent distance off shore. All fun and games until some fog rolls in. XM weather and your cell wont help one bit.

Perhaps the Fantom 18 may be overkill and for alot less maybe you could get an older used radar if you dont think you will be using it often, but no one "needs radar" until they need it and curse that they dont have it.
Old 09-12-2020, 11:10 AM
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100% not overkill. Seemed every time we went out earlier this summer we were in fog. I would never own a boat without radar.
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Old 09-12-2020, 03:57 PM
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Will not own a boat without one! Should have added, the fog can roll up inshore, offshore and onshore. Distance is not a factor.I also did come within a few feet of dragger a while back when I did not have radar—all my fault, but a second away from my demise.

Last edited by allrelative; 09-13-2020 at 01:21 PM. Reason: added detail
Old 09-12-2020, 04:25 PM
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I don't know precisely where "New England" is located, but to predicate a radar's usefulness "5-15 miles offshore" ignores the basic fact that you must navigate 0-5 miles offshore to get there ... where congested boat traffic, obstructions and those nasty land masses become more significant factors. That's where radar becomes most useful in conditions of restricted visibility. So, I would eliminate distance as a criteria for making your decision. Daytime/nighttime operation and weather are the most important factors. You've ruled out nighttime boating and deem your self a fair weather sailor, so that leaves the unexpected case of restricted visibility as you primary concern.

Do you trust the weatherman? Therein lies the answer to your question.
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Old 09-12-2020, 04:54 PM
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You really do want a radar or you will miss out on many good days, it's not uncommon to have fog in the morning that blows off as the day warms up. Storms and fog banks can sneak up on you. It gives you much more confidence and ability to use it at night or come home late (good fishing, late dinner). My first scary experience without radar was it probably 20 years ago fishing in the ambrose channel on the clearest most beautiful day then bam...you could barely see the length of the boat, tons of commercial traffic, fog horns blaring. Fast forward this year, second year on the new boat without radar, 3 days we really had no business being out there. I've just wrapped up my radar install today. Based on cost and reviews I went for the 18 XHD which costs 2/3 of what the fantom costs and may be a better machine but does lack the cool color track.
Old 09-12-2020, 05:43 PM
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If my boat goes in the ocean it has radar, it’s that valuable to me,recently was the first time I’ve ever needed it, without it I would t want to imagine my anxiety in our situation, instead I felt Cautiously confident.....it’s not many boat dollars and worth every dime IMHO.
Old 09-12-2020, 07:09 PM
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I would think New England has plenty of fog early and late in the boating season. Going up to 15 miles offshore, I will not be without it.
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Old 09-13-2020, 04:39 PM
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Thanks for all the replies and thoughts! This is a great forum, I think I'm convinced. Just need to decide between solid state vs class magnetron...Fantom 18 vs Garmin xHD 18
Old 09-13-2020, 07:14 PM
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I have the xHD 18 and am very impressed with it for the money.
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Old 09-13-2020, 07:44 PM
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just bought a 6kw 4 foot open ray for a 23 foot boat.
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Old 09-14-2020, 03:15 AM
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Just put the 24xhd garmin on my new boat i purchased first time radar user and love it no question Can see everything from boats to the storms etc great feature. well worth the cost still learning it and adjustments etc but running through a big storm on the harbor the other day couldn't see anything but knew where boats were and where the storm was and ended.
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Old 09-14-2020, 09:14 PM
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My old yacht had one on it when I bought it. Furuno 6kw had a 3 foot open ray. you know what I mean about fish traps. Inland folks put a line of sticks 50 to several hundred yards out on the sound, then put wire mesh so the fish can't get through it and a coral at the end out in the sound. There are three of them in our sound that are over 300 yards out one close to 400 yards. I start seeing those sticks 3 miles away. All they are, are 2x4 x 12s drove down or washed down . Close you get you can zoon in and almost see every stick. AT night that would be death on a boat. Not only trear everything up wrap the motor up in metal wire, Rope you can cut. Metal wire your going swimming to unwrap that and you better have wire cutters.

Radar won't be as high as it was on the carver but it will still show you everything you need to know . I bought a cheap 2k radar for the Fountain. I hated it. Open ray is a little bigger but it shows so much more than closed or enclosed.
you can still get used 12k for under 2500. Bird radars. If your not going to run at night, you can get by with it and watching the weather, but if you get caught dark or fog, or heavy rain, they are really nice to have.

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