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Tuning a radar

Old 07-22-2013, 11:00 AM
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Default Tuning a radar

I have a dome garmin radar and it needs to be tuned up? I live in the Tampa area and would like to know what the cost would be around? And where to get it done?
Thanks
Joe
Old 07-22-2013, 03:02 PM
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What the heck do u mean? U can adjust gain, noise rejection etc on ur own. If its broke send it to garmin
Old 07-22-2013, 03:14 PM
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I forget what episode of Deadliest Catch it was but they showed how to tune a radar, might wanna check that out...You will need aluminum foil, and a friend at the unit and yourself with the foil.
Old 07-22-2013, 03:34 PM
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"Every 3000 hours just bring it into Jiffy Lube..."
Old 07-23-2013, 07:39 AM
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As Brad stated, you can manually adjust things on your unit yourself. Very simple procedure and won't cost you any money. If you are beginning to get weak returns and you have your gain turned up higher and higher and are still seeing the video deteriorate you may be in need of a new magnetron. That will also depend on how much you use your radar and how old the dome is. Check the TX hours on your unit and see if it is above 3000 hours, as most magnetrons are rated for this amount of time.

Keith
Old 07-23-2013, 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by threeriversmarine View Post
As Brad stated, you can manually adjust things on your unit yourself. Very simple procedure and won't cost you any money. If you are beginning to get weak returns and you have your gain turned up higher and higher and are still seeing the video deteriorate you may be in need of a new magnetron. That will also depend on how much you use your radar and how old the dome is. Check the TX hours on your unit and see if it is above 3000 hours, as most magnetrons are rated for this amount of time.

Keith
Garmins start to quit around 1K, Ive seen em go less. Rarely seen them go more than 2K hours.
Old 07-23-2013, 08:10 AM
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Also, in addition to setting gain, adjusting the noise filters, you can set the offset for dead center, they might refer to that as part of tuning also. Pick a point directly in front of your boat and see where that point lands on your radar screen. You can go into the settings and enter + or - degree offsets to line that return up to the center of the screen. Just one more adjustment to maximize the overall performance of the unit.
Old 07-23-2013, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by CMEBoston View Post
Garmins start to quit around 1K, Ive seen em go less. Rarely seen them go more than 2K hours.
I will have to keep that in mind. Most of the radars I deal with are bigger Furuno open arrays, and their magnetrons are rated in the books for 3,000 hours. I almost always see them getting up to at least 25,000 hours before starting to fail though. That may also have something to do with them not always being on, the commercial towboats up here almost never turn them off. The hours are just somewhere to start though, don't make a judgement about your units parts based only on how many hours it has. If your unit has a self test button you can compare your magnetron current (DC voltage) and compare it to what is normal operating voltage and what isn't and that can give you a better indication of what may be wrong, if there is a problem that is.

Keith
Old 07-23-2013, 08:40 AM
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Great info!! Tin foil hat not happening....
Old 07-23-2013, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by threeriversmarine View Post
I will have to keep that in mind. Most of the radars I deal with are bigger Furuno open arrays, and their magnetrons are rated in the books for 3,000 hours. I almost always see them getting up to at least 25,000 hours before starting to fail though. That may also have something to do with them not always being on, the commercial towboats up here almost never turn them off. The hours are just somewhere to start though, don't make a judgement about your units parts based only on how many hours it has. If your unit has a self test button you can compare your magnetron current (DC voltage) and compare it to what is normal operating voltage and what isn't and that can give you a better indication of what may be wrong, if there is a problem that is.

Keith
Oh I am saying from experience! funny thing is usually something else fails before the maggy on a garmin.
Old 07-23-2013, 11:34 PM
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some radars have a "tunning" control menu like the Sperry / deca bridgemaster E's. they cost about $20,000 and are what you'd find on big commercial boats.

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