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How close is too close, a RADAR question

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How close is too close, a RADAR question

Old 09-01-2011, 12:37 PM
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Default How close is too close, a RADAR question

I may have a lose connection on the network cable from the MFD to the dome. I can test the conneciton at the MFD easily enough, but is it safe to climb up on the tower and lay under the dome while it's spinning ? I need to fuss with the cable and see if I can get it to lose the connection. I have a typical dome mounted on a 5" stand over a canvas t-top. I can get my hand on the network cable, but I will need to be in the path of the beam to do it. Essentialy laying down in front of the dome. I know it's not a microwave, but still the thought of doing this is giving me some concern.

Last edited by Endtuition01; 09-01-2011 at 01:05 PM.
Old 09-01-2011, 12:57 PM
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I have worked on my cable also while my radar was in operation and did not suffer any harm....well except for the tumors, glaucoma and loss of hair.
Old 09-01-2011, 01:18 PM
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dont forget to wear your aluminum foil hat!
Old 09-01-2011, 03:02 PM
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I'd go by the book on this one, your eyes are precious and glaucoma surgery is expensive.

"Warning: Radio Frequency Radiation Hazard

The radar scanner transmits electromagnetic energy at microwave frequencies which can be harmful, particularly to the eyes. Do NOT look at the antenna from close range. Ensure personnel are clear of the radome when the radar is turned on. It is recommended that the radar is installed out of range of personnel, e.g. above head height."
Old 09-01-2011, 03:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Pez Vela View Post
I'd go by the book on this one, your eyes are precious and glaucoma surgery is expensive.

"Warning: Radio Frequency Radiation Hazard

The radar scanner transmits electromagnetic energy at microwave frequencies which can be harmful, particularly to the eyes. Do NOT look at the antenna from close range. Ensure personnel are clear of the radome when the radar is turned on. It is recommended that the radar is installed out of range of personnel, e.g. above head height."
I agree..I was just teasing......now were did my guide dog go...
Old 09-01-2011, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Pez Vela View Post
I'd go by the book on this one, your eyes are precious and glaucoma surgery is expensive.

"Warning: Radio Frequency Radiation Hazard

The radar scanner transmits electromagnetic energy at microwave frequencies which can be harmful, particularly to the eyes. Do NOT look at the antenna from close range. Ensure personnel are clear of the radome when the radar is turned on. It is recommended that the radar is installed out of range of personnel, e.g. above head height."
That makes you want to let the wife drive the boat while you sit in the back of the boat after reading that warning.
Old 09-01-2011, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by semperfifishing View Post
I agree..I was just teasing......now were did my guide dog go...

When you find him we can look for my hair.
Old 09-02-2011, 09:53 AM
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How can I test the connection at the dome to see if it is the cause of the constant "Signal Lost" errors?
Old 09-02-2011, 10:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Endtuition01 View Post
How can I test the connection at the dome to see if it is the cause of the constant "Signal Lost" errors?
I suppose you could tape a piece of string to it and wiggle it from below, or push on it with a long stick, but why not just redo the connection, then see if you still have the problem?
Old 09-02-2011, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Pez Vela View Post
When you find him we can look for my hair.
I found your hair...it was on the ground next to my testicles
Old 09-02-2011, 09:41 PM
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I would not like to do what you propose. I know when I am on the marlin tower and my shins start to feel really bad, someone at the lower station has defintely had the bad judgement to activate the only 4kw radome forward of my legs a couple feet. Brains & eyeballs are supposedly much more susceptible to this kind of potential radio wave damage. For a few seconds it may not matter, but there may be safer ways to manipulate the cable from outside the beam or with radar off, open up the dome to inspect.
Old 09-02-2011, 09:47 PM
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Doesn't that stuff make you sterile as hell?
Old 09-03-2011, 08:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Austin Williams View Post
Doesn't that stuff make you sterile as hell?
So is that why good radar tech's are a dying breed?
Old 09-03-2011, 09:02 AM
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They went to work at Simrad and developed low power wideband radar! ;-)
Old 09-13-2011, 01:30 PM
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To follow up..
I was not able to re-create the "signal lost" error buy fussing with either end of either cable. At the dock, the unit is solid as a rock. I did not actually tug on the dome end of the cable while it was spinning, but I did use my deck brush from below to manipulate it quite agressively with no results (it may be a bit cleaner, but otherwise there were no results). I was able to get errors of a different type by disconecting the cables completly, but I never got the "signal lost" message I was hoping for. I also gave the head unit and the dome a few good smacks to see if that would cause the error and got nothing. I'm hard pressed to see how any slapping or pounding at sea could be worse than the testing I did, but I'm still convinced the next outing in sporty seas will give me the same errors. I've logged all this with the local Garmin shop and have turned this over to them. Hopefully when they are at the marina for other work, they can give my unit a run through and see what's up.
More when I have it....
Old 09-13-2011, 02:13 PM
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I assume you have loaded the latest software, right?? If I recall, they had a software bug on the 24HD software a year or two ago that was fixed with an quick update. There was also a recall on a few serial #'s of the 24HD domes.

1. Update yoru software...
2. Check with Garmin Tech support and your domes serial #.
Old 09-13-2011, 03:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Endtuition01 View Post
I may have a lose connection on the network cable from the MFD to the dome. I can test the conneciton at the MFD easily enough, but is it safe to climb up on the tower and lay under the dome while it's spinning ? I need to fuss with the cable and see if I can get it to lose the connection. I have a typical dome mounted on a 5" stand over a canvas t-top. I can get my hand on the network cable, but I will need to be in the path of the beam to do it. Essentialy laying down in front of the dome. I know it's not a microwave, but still the thought of doing this is giving me some concern.
You may be able to program a no-transmit zone into your radar. If so, set it up not to transmit where your head will be. Same thing goes for the guy with hot shins.
Old 09-14-2011, 06:23 AM
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I would not trust software for microwave safety. It gets distracted by some other task on a particular scan and OOPS....didn't get around to the transmit zone task.

Those functions are for radar operations management....not for human safety.

Get your radar checked out by an appropriate electronics house.

RF safety is not a game. After working with high power military radars for much of my career, I've heard too many horror stories about injuries.

That's one factor in why I got a 3G radar.
Old 09-14-2011, 06:31 AM
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Open the Radome and check each wires connection.

If they are loose or Green or white fuzzy crap falling off them.

remove all the wires.

Strip them back until you find fresh copper.

Tin all the wires

and reinstall them.

be sure to use conductive grease, check your V.S.W.R. and adjust the impeadance if required, realign your Maine Bang trigger when you finish.

Yea its a pain in the Butt.

Ill do it for you for just $85 per hour plus travel expence

or you could hire one of these guuys to do it fror you Cheaper.

Old 09-14-2011, 08:50 AM
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I have the very latest software, first thing I did.
The known issue with the GMR24 was realted to the 740 unit only, according to Garmin.
This unit is actualy a NOH (New Over Hauled) unit and is only 9 month old.
It's under warranty and the issue has been tirned over to local Garmin repair shop. I was just hoping to avoid any long drawn out process since the boat is hours away and the cost could be significant if the problem turns out to be install related as I installed all the Garmin stuff myself.

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