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Cost of labor to install radar?

Old 10-07-2009, 10:01 AM
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Default Cost of labor to install radar?

What should labor cost to install a Garmin GMR 18HD? I do not have a mounting plate on my T-top (canvas), so I'm thinking they will need to weld/screw in a mounting plate first. $1k for the unit...just wondering what I should be expecting for the install. Thanks
Old 10-07-2009, 12:33 PM
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You'll probably need to pay a welder $150 or so to put a plate in. Radar installation should be about $250 to $300.
Old 10-07-2009, 01:57 PM
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Canvas will likely need to be removed and reinstalled. Adds to the cost significantly. Do you have to move your gps? Your stern light? If your gps and radar dome are at the same level, you will likely need to raise one or the other, Radar mount will usually run a couple hundred easy and much more if you are going to add a gps mount and light bar.

Another option instead of having a plate welded is to use a Taco mounting plate.
http://tacomarine.com/item--Universa...-GSE-1001.html

Very sturdy and can be installed without removing canvas. I used them to install my outriggers.
Old 10-07-2009, 02:42 PM
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My GPS is on the starboard side of the T-top, so I think it will remain below the radar, but I know I'll have to check that. The stern light might need to be moved though (maybe a new stern light/radar mount combo would be the way to go). $250-300 seems like a lot (on top of $150 for welding). So, $400-450 to install a unit that costs $1,000--doesn't seem right. Maybe if I get the welding done I can install the radar myself.
Old 10-07-2009, 03:20 PM
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The price to install a $1000.00 verses a $6000.00 is going to be the roughly same if istalled on the same boat such as yours. They both have wires that need to be run, both need support and in your case the top would have to be removed.
Take it from a novice installer the price is not out of range. When doing a self install it may seem easy when it's in your mind and very excited about your new piece of equipment,but fades very quickly when you have to continually stop because you needed something else. I spent 4 hrs trying to get my wire thru my radar tower including 2 broken fish tapes, 3M 5200 everywhere, knot on my head, 2 cut fingers and a couple of round trips to the Marine and hardware store.
My Wife said she would divorce me if I install anymore electronics and especially if she finds a tube of that 3M5200 in the garage. I have great amount of respect for anyone who installs Marine Anything for a living.
Regards,
THIP

Last edited by The Hat Island Pirate; 10-07-2009 at 03:31 PM.
Old 10-07-2009, 03:21 PM
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don't know why, but the rule of thumb is install labor always comes out to 30 - 40 % of the cost of the equipment if done right and professionally....
Old 10-07-2009, 03:55 PM
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It may help if you buy you equipment from your installer, also make sure he is a member of the NMEA and is qualified.
Old 10-07-2009, 03:56 PM
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Maybe I stretched the $6000.00 since an open array antenna and comes in two pieces but whether its a $1000.00 dome or a $3000.00 dome of the same manufacture, going on the same boat, how could the labor be more? My point is, the amount the dome cost isn't whats driving the installation costs, it is labor and situation and things do not always go as smoothly as planned.
THIP
Old 10-07-2009, 04:17 PM
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I should clarify - I'm talking systems install as they usually get more complicated. On a straight single piece of equipment like a dome radar, yes...for us it's a flat $750 install or so.
Old 10-07-2009, 04:24 PM
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Agreed, and that is another reason I am having a professional do my next install. Crap, It will not be to far into the future when a person will need a computer programmers degree to install a Marine system.
THIP
Old 10-07-2009, 04:31 PM
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we are not cheap - but them again our installs are done right, and don't break out on the ocean 2 years later:
see our installs here:
http://www.elec-unlimited.com/smf/index.php?board=2.0

and how a few bad ones do it here:
http://www.elec-unlimited.com/smf/index.php?topic=97.0

http://www.elec-unlimited.com/smf/index.php?topic=115.0

look for NMEA and CMET certificaton when you get quotes
Old 10-07-2009, 04:37 PM
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I'm sure if you shop around, you can come up with an install cost that exceeds your purchase price. I'd start at your marina, they are usually good for a laugh.

Originally Posted by Glen E View Post
I should clarify - I'm talking systems install as they usually get more complicated. On a straight single piece of equipment like a dome radar, yes...for us it's a flat $750 install or so.
Hopefully with nm2k and an improvement or two to be named later, that will somewhat diminish.

I'm thinking wireless nm2k with a speed in the gbit range and a range of 30 feet between devices. Add remote wireless power, and bingo.

Neither of those is out of the realm of possibility, just affordability.
Old 10-07-2009, 04:47 PM
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WOW! Very nice Glen. To bad for the unfortunate ones though. I also imagine it's a bit of work just trying to stay on top of all the Certification process you guys go thru. Very impressed. All I can say it I at least took the time to label the wires, and trust me it is not done as neatly as you would have done. You would have fired me in the first 5 minutes.LOL
Thanks for the info, as I will be looking this winter for the new boat.
Regards,
THIP.
Old 10-07-2009, 04:50 PM
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I have done all my installing myself. If you can , do it. But if you're not up to it, it's a project to get it done right.

In coming into the install business just 10 months ago after retiring, there is so much I have learned and am still learning every day. I just sell it but inspect every job. I'm blown away at what I see. Everyone thinks it's just drilling a few screws, a few heat shirinks and it's done. Anything over an hour or two for labor is a "ripoff".

A good install is much more than that. The first thing I never thought of is the plastic protection that goes on every surface where the job is being done. No grease marks on your nice salon area when it's done. The boat looks like it did the day we got on it.
Second is console/bilge work - in may areas you can't have a two guys working in a console so it takes time to do the wiring the right way.

Usually we are replacing a component that was there before, and holes rarely match up. That requires carpentry or plate making depending on the hole.

last is the testing and the sea trial - that's a couple hours - some don't need it, some do. An AP and radar certainly do.

Glen - Electronics Unlimited, Ft lauderdale

The people here who have wired a boat to match a good mfr like intrepid or YF know what I'm talking about. It's not a easy thing to do to get it right.

Last edited by Glen E; 10-07-2009 at 05:54 PM.
Old 10-07-2009, 05:52 PM
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Why not do it yourself? Except for maybe the welding.
Old 10-07-2009, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by davepen View Post
Why not do it yourself? Except for maybe the welding.
why not the welding?
Old 10-07-2009, 06:25 PM
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well said Glen. then again if you like metal shavings ground into your deck.................
Old 10-07-2009, 06:40 PM
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The horror stories abound in the install world when done by "trunk slammers" as they are known...just free lance guys that work out of their car hired by marinas and boat stores to install stuff. No credentials or training. Probably the biggest blowaway I've seen recently is a guy brought us a 24 Everglades for a stereo power problem. He had bought a new VHF that went in the dash and wanted a stereo up top in the t-box. There was no 12v power in the T- box. So the installer energized the BRAID of the vhf antenna wire going up the pipe and stopped off at the t-box to power the stereo.....We were dumbfounded in taking it apart....
Old 10-07-2009, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Idiot View Post
why not the welding?
I guess I shouldn't assume. Maybe the guy knows how to weld.

I don't.
Old 10-08-2009, 04:36 AM
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Originally Posted by davepen View Post
I guess I shouldn't assume. Maybe the guy knows how to weld.

I don't.

i was hoping you would say that it took special tools and a great amount of skill to weld correctly.

then i would have told you that installing electronics in the marine environment also takes special tools and a great amount of skill.

why would you assume that he has the tools/skill set for one task, but not the other?

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