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Lowrance 3G Radar for the HDS 10

Old 10-07-2011, 07:56 AM
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Default Lowrance 3G Radar for the HDS 10

Hi Guys:

Up front I apologize if this has already been coved to a point of exhaustion.

I am thinking of ordering this unit for my 23' Parker. I already have an HDS 10 with an extra port available. As I understand it, the 3G will plug directly into the HDS.

I travel extensively from Cape Cod to North Carolina. You can count of fog almost every day, it seems, when we are in Cape Cod. 10 days ago we needed it every day when we were fishing Montauk.

I woud appreciate hearing from other owners regarding how happy they are with the unit and how much I should expect. I will primarily be using it to navigate in the fog. We curently have an older 2KW Furuno unit that does O.K., but because it needs to be constantly tuned as you move the range in, or out we find it is pretty worthless beyond 1/4 mile.

I am hoping to be able to see some birds up to three miles, or so and track storms up to 10. Is this realistic?

I know that this unit will not replace a big Open Array radar, but that's not an option on my boat.

Another question: Does anyone have the radar Overlayed over the Chart, and what equipment is required to make that happen?

Thanks all. Safe boating and great fishing.

GT
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Old 10-07-2011, 04:33 PM
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I have the 3G with an HDS-10.

There are a lot of folks that seem disappointed with the 3G, but I'm not one of them. It seems if you've had another radar previously, especially a longer range one, it sets the stage for disappointment with 3G.

As a new boater (but a 34 year radar engineer, the last 20 working for a big red letter company) I am absolutely pleased with my 3G. I want a high resolution picture with a very short minimum range and the BR24 and 3G deliver on that. I can see markers 30 feet off my gunwales and I see tankers aligned perfectly with their AIS out to 10 miles offshore.

I use it in chart overlay mode, so the radar in Autorange seems to lock and load its settings around the in-use scale of your chartplotter. You need a heading sensor and I'd recommend the Simrad RC42 due to its compatibility with its Lowrance brethern over the nMEA2000 network and ease of integration with the HDS/3G combo.

You'll need to calibrate it for rate of heading change and then any fixed offset due to your physical installation away from perfect north. (Mine is off 180 degrees as the bracket interferes where I have it installed.)

I grounded myself in Chatham Inlet a couple weeks ago and had to wait til well after sunset for the incoming tide. I had never travelled in total darkness before but had always used my 3G in conjiunction with the chart in good daylight conditions, so I knew it was spot on. That night I travelled 10 miles in shallow water/narrow channels with no spotlight.

The 3G allowed me to see lateral markers in plenty of time to miss (these are smaller plastic shell ATON's used by Chatham and Orleans not the cans and nuns ala USCG.) I have GPS waypoints for the markers but they mve around with the tides so I could see just how "off" my waypoints were vs 3G.

The land clutter images on each side of the channel were all I had in areas with few lateral markers and I had about 4 miles of maybe 300 foot wide channels with ~4 ft depth to cover in the dark. I sure didn't go fast, but I made it without bumping a thing.

It works as well in the fog (which as you know we get a bit of in Chatham) as clear air IME. I don't go out if there are close storms, so I really haven't observed how 3G works with rain clutter. On sea clutter, with the harbor setting I can see my own wake and that of others...a pretty cool trail with a moving target.

One of the pieces of equipment you need with the 3G is a mind open to a "different kind of sensor". I knew what it should be and what I wanted when I waited for the 3G to release in June. I have been nothing but pleased with the results in my use.

The 3G uses an FM/CW waveform similar to military fire control radars (e.g., the old Tartar CWI) so its clutter rejection is super, its minimum range is roughly the bow rails of my walkaround. Bandwidth is 100MHz which translates roughly to one meter range resolution, considered fire control grade in the military.

It is safe as Johnson's Baby Shampoo from an RF hazard point of view.

Let me know if I missed anything you care about. I use Sirius satellite weather for my longer range weather overlay with the chart screen.

If possible find someone with a 3G and have a look b4 u buy.
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Old 10-07-2011, 06:39 PM
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I use the BR24 with dual HDS-8's; I've picked up storm centers as far out as 16 plus miles via chart overlay. We got caught out a couple of weeks ago when we shouldn't have been out as the weatherman apparently had a nip or two the day before his last forecast. At one point, we had to turn into a storm cell and ride it out; during that time, we could actually see where we were in the storm and could see as we emerged through the other side. From there we were able to zig zag all the way back in without centering one up again. It was a scary ride for sure. Storm cells just kept popping up everywhere.

I think the reason some aren't happy with them is they expect them to do something they're not capable of. 2-3 miles is about the extent of picking up most other vessels. Birds? I've seen them a couple of times but wouldn't call it worthy as a tool to finding birds. But close in navigation, wow! It's a great unit for navigating as CapeC pointed out. I've experienced the same. In fact, I've read that some now utilize both open array and broadband radars for the different attributes.

I think I've been most impressed by daytime navigation when coming in after a long day offshore. Other boats, jet skis, kayaks and the like blend into the horizon where I come into port. It's a major resort area so many, if not most aren't well schooled in marine navigation rules. The BB radar imaging on the chartplotter is a great tool for heads up on all the potentials out there.
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:46 AM
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We had a Lowrance LRA-2000 displayed on our LCX-112C. Also had an LMS-525CDF for a secondary unit.

A nearby lightning strike resulted in some EMP-induced voltage damage to items on our NMEA2K bus, including the radar and the Simrad AP-16 autopilot.

Instead of replacing the LRA-2000 with an LRA-2400HD to interface with the old(er) LCX-112C, I replaced the LMS-525 with an HDS-7 and got the new 3G radar as well. New AP-24 autopilot included the RC-42 rate compass, and the Simnet is interfaced to the NMEA2k network.

Only completed the installations about six weeks ago, but overall close-in performance, including chart overlay, is truly outstanding, and the longer range performance is quite satisfactory.

Also sold a small Garmin GPSMap 478 that was used primarinly for XM WX display, so purchased the Sirius weather module and that is all interfaced through an NEP-2.

Agree with all the comments by capecuddy and GulfC above.

Brian
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:16 AM
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If your LMS-525 is still operational it would be a good idea to keep it on the boat if you have space. By connecting LMS-525 to HDS by Ethernet you can display the BroadBand Sounder inside the HDS at the LMS screen,
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:40 AM
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I particularly like the lightning indications on Sirius weather.
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Old 10-09-2011, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by abbor View Post
If your LMS-525 is still operational it would be a good idea to keep it on the boat if you have space. By connecting LMS-525 to HDS by Ethernet you can display the BroadBand Sounder inside the HDS at the LMS screen,
Sold the LMS-525, the GPSMap 478, and an LBS-1 to help pay for the new gear.

Using the broadband sounder in the HDS-7 instead of the previous LBS-1, and it is networked through the NEP-2 so I have full sonar availability on both the HDS-7 and the LCX-112C.

Both F150s are on the NMEA-2K network, so full engine data available (as before) on the LCX-112C and on the great "Info" displays on the HDS-7.

When the LCX-112C dies, it will be replaced by an HDS-10...

Brian
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Old 10-10-2011, 07:51 AM
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Originally Posted by capecuddy View Post
I have the 3G with an HDS-10.

There are a lot of folks that seem disappointed with the 3G, but I'm not one of them. It seems if you've had another radar previously, especially a longer range one, it sets the stage for disappointment with 3G.

As a new boater (but a 34 year radar engineer, the last 20 working for a big red letter company) I am absolutely pleased with my 3G. I want a high resolution picture with a very short minimum range and the BR24 and 3G deliver on that. I can see markers 30 feet off my gunwales and I see tankers aligned perfectly with their AIS out to 10 miles offshore.

I use it in chart overlay mode, so the radar in Autorange seems to lock and load its settings around the in-use scale of your chartplotter. You need a heading sensor and I'd recommend the Simrad RC42 due to its compatibility with its Lowrance brethern over the nMEA2000 network and ease of integration with the HDS/3G combo.

You'll need to calibrate it for rate of heading change and then any fixed offset due to your physical installation away from perfect north. (Mine is off 180 degrees as the bracket interferes where I have it installed.)

I grounded myself in Chatham Inlet a couple weeks ago and had to wait til well after sunset for the incoming tide. I had never travelled in total darkness before but had always used my 3G in conjiunction with the chart in good daylight conditions, so I knew it was spot on. That night I travelled 10 miles in shallow water/narrow channels with no spotlight.

The 3G allowed me to see lateral markers in plenty of time to miss (these are smaller plastic shell ATON's used by Chatham and Orleans not the cans and nuns ala USCG.) I have GPS waypoints for the markers but they mve around with the tides so I could see just how "off" my waypoints were vs 3G.

The land clutter images on each side of the channel were all I had in areas with few lateral markers and I had about 4 miles of maybe 300 foot wide channels with ~4 ft depth to cover in the dark. I sure didn't go fast, but I made it without bumping a thing.

It works as well in the fog (which as you know we get a bit of in Chatham) as clear air IME. I don't go out if there are close storms, so I really haven't observed how 3G works with rain clutter. On sea clutter, with the harbor setting I can see my own wake and that of others...a pretty cool trail with a moving target.

One of the pieces of equipment you need with the 3G is a mind open to a "different kind of sensor". I knew what it should be and what I wanted when I waited for the 3G to release in June. I have been nothing but pleased with the results in my use.

The 3G uses an FM/CW waveform similar to military fire control radars (e.g., the old Tartar CWI) so its clutter rejection is super, its minimum range is roughly the bow rails of my walkaround. Bandwidth is 100MHz which translates roughly to one meter range resolution, considered fire control grade in the military.

It is safe as Johnson's Baby Shampoo from an RF hazard point of view.

Let me know if I missed anything you care about. I use Sirius satellite weather for my longer range weather overlay with the chart screen.

If possible find someone with a 3G and have a look b4 u buy.
CC:

I have been out of both inlets from Ryders Cove and there is definitely a "Pucker Factor". I love fishing Cape Cod. It is my favorite trip of the year. I don't envy you that trip in the dark given the rocks around those inlets.

Given your extensive background in Radar, could you tell me exactly what you would recommend to make the "Overlay" work with my HDS 10?

Lowrance tells me I need the following:

1. They recommend the RC42 heading Sensor. @ $550.
2. Simnet Adapter Kit. @ $100
3. NEMA 2000 Starter Kit. @ $50.

All told $700 plus labor costs.

Does this sound right, or do you have another way to do it that you believe is better?

Many thanks.

Chuck
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Old 10-10-2011, 08:00 AM
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Thanks to everyone for your responses. They were very helpful and give me confidence that we have made the right choice along with laying out the unit's real capabilities.

On another note, those with the older 111 and 112 C Lowrance units keep in mind that Lowrance has an exchange policy that was in effect for my 111C. I was having some issues with my unit and sent it back to Lowrance. As everyone knows that will not repair their old units if there are any major problems.

They ran their tests and said it could not be repaired and offered me a new HDS 10 with the Insight Mapping for $800. Don't throw those old machines away. Not sure whether that offer is still on the table as it was this past August.

Again, thanks for your comments. I will come back and post a review once we test it on our boat.

GT
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:16 AM
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Hi:

Not sure that you ever saw my question on another Post. Thanks again for your help.

Chuck

CC:

I have been out of both inlets from Ryders Cove and there is definitely a "Pucker Factor". I love fishing Cape Cod. It is my favorite trip of the year. I don't envy you that trip in the dark given the rocks around those inlets.

Given your extensive background in Radar, could you tell me exactly what you would recommend to make the "Overlay" work with my HDS 10?

Lowrance tells me I need the following:

1. They recommend the RC42 heading Sensor. @ $550.
2. Simnet Adapter Kit. @ $100
3. NEMA 2000 Starter Kit. @ $50.

All told $700 plus labor costs.

Does this sound right, or do you have another way to do it that you believe is better?

Many thanks.

Chuck
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:39 AM
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Yes you need a heading sensor/compass, and the adaptor,and the starter kit. There is NO other way, you must have the heading sensor. DO it yourself its easy plug and play. Hardest part is locating where to mount the rc24 in a small boat, i ended up under my gunnel,since i had no room in the console except near my compass or batts and they had too much magnetioc field. Grab a small compass and see where you can locate the rc24 without magnetic deviation. You can adjust it later for the small deviation, as on centerline is best if possible, but tough on a small boat.

I had a blackout fog trip out of ryders 2 weeks past,in the AM, under radar overlay. Its spooky, and you have to trust the instruments. I can spot birds but prob not like an open array, and under 3 miles, so your eyes are almost as good. Still playing on that. I like the fact i am not cooking anyone on the bow casting with an open array and small power draw, and the fact its not over heavy on the t top on my 23.

Good setup and am quite happy with my lowrance gear, and have hadd great support as well when i call in. Make sure you get the NEP2, as their was some ethernet issue with NEP1 on VHF interference with Lowrance.
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:41 AM
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Has anyone here done the download/update they have for the 3G radar?

I have not yet as I don't like changing anything when it is all working so smoothly.

Just curious as to others' experiences with it. Thanks
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Giant Tuna View Post
CC:

I have been out of both inlets from Ryders Cove and there is definitely a "Pucker Factor". I love fishing Cape Cod. It is my favorite trip of the year. I don't envy you that trip in the dark given the rocks around those inlets.

Given your extensive background in Radar, could you tell me exactly what you would recommend to make the "Overlay" work with my HDS 10?

Lowrance tells me I need the following:

1. They recommend the RC42 heading Sensor. @ $550.
2. Simnet Adapter Kit. @ $100
3. NEMA 2000 Starter Kit. @ $50.

All told $700 plus labor costs.

Does this sound right, or do you have another way to do it that you believe is better?

Many thanks.

Chuck
That sounds right...I paid $469 for the RC42 and you might do better say, at BOE Marine (it's 496 there: http://www.boemarine.com/results.aspx?SearchText=RC42). The other odds and ends are necessary for cabling up NMEA2000 and adapting for a Simrad network for the RC42.

Sorry I don't have a silver bullet for you.

There are cheaper heading sensors, but I can't tell you how well they will work. Most cheaper units interface via NMEA 0183 (serial interface) and those tend to cause other integration problems. I just bit my lip and paid extra for the NMEA2000 solution and it works fine lasts a long time.
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Old 10-12-2011, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by bayrunner16 View Post
Has anyone here done the download/update they have for the 3G radar?

I have not yet as I don't like changing anything when it is all working so smoothly.

Just curious as to others' experiences with it. Thanks
I just read the info on the Lowrance site.....all the upgrade does is protect the radar from someone incorrectly trying to upgrade with BR24 software (which is not compatible with 3G hardware.) It doesn't sound like there is any improved or added functionality other than protection from inadvertent BR24 sw updates. \\I've downloaded but given that description, I'm not in any hurry to use it. (I'll just not try to use BR24 software!)
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Old 10-12-2011, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by josh_wellfleet View Post
Yes you need a heading sensor/compass, and the adaptor,and the starter kit. There is NO other way, you must have the heading sensor. DO it yourself its easy plug and play. Hardest part is locating where to mount the rc24 in a small boat, i ended up under my gunnel,since i had no room in the console except near my compass or batts and they had too much magnetioc field. Grab a small compass and see where you can locate the rc24 without magnetic deviation. You can adjust it later for the small deviation, as on centerline is best if possible, but tough on a small boat.

I had a blackout fog trip out of ryders 2 weeks past,in the AM, under radar overlay. Its spooky, and you have to trust the instruments. I can spot birds but prob not like an open array, and under 3 miles, so your eyes are almost as good. Still playing on that. I like the fact i am not cooking anyone on the bow casting with an open array and small power draw, and the fact its not over heavy on the t top on my 23.

Good setup and am quite happy with my lowrance gear, and have hadd great support as well when i call in. Make sure you get the NEP2, as their was some ethernet issue with NEP1 on VHF interference with Lowrance.
I have a 22' walkaround and installed it just inside the bulkhead for the cabin on the port side. The sensor's North is facing aft, so I had to do a 180 degree offset in the set up because of the way I mounted it.Works great.
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:52 AM
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Thanks all:

Headed to Montauk next week. The fish are on their way South.

GT
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Old 10-12-2011, 06:48 PM
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When I first got my boat earlier this year, it had the old Raytheon Radar. It worked pretty well, but could not see the display in daylight, so figured it was time to update electronics. I too, like Cape and with lots of his guidance got into the HDS10 and 3G Radar. All I can say is it is so easy to use, and works great! Just like everyone says. I use it when drifting in close quarters to know if there is a boat or object in the drift path since I can not see around to the front very well due to the walkaround. I just keep an eye out for the radar from way back in the cockpit and also look around best I can. The display is impressive and the detail is excellent.
I share same experiences as those in this post with visibiliy and also used to track some upcoming storms about 2 months ago one day that were approx. 8-10 miles away and waited for them to get past the inlet are before I headed in. That was really nice!
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Old 04-30-2014, 07:25 AM
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I find the above stated experience to contradict the information that I just got from a phone conversation with a tech at Lowrance. I have a Gen 1 HDS and a G4 radar. He said that I needed a RC 42 to achieve radar overlay. It seems that the Point 1 will work fine which will save a few bucks. Thanks
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Old 04-30-2014, 07:53 AM
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Not sure which statement you are referring to. If it was in regards to only way to get overlay was with RC42, at that time, that was true as Point-1 was not in existence back in 2011.
Either RC42 or Point-1 will allow overlay.
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Old 04-30-2014, 08:41 AM
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Technical discussions on a 3-year-old thread are pretty irrelevant...I expect the OP made his decision years ago, unless he's a super-procrastinator like me.
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