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  GPS Receiver, Chart Plotter, and SONAR Combination, VHF Marine Radio Transceiver, VHF Antenna Mounting Locations, All Specific for 1986 MONTAUK

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Author Topic:   GPS Receiver, Chart Plotter, and SONAR Combination, VHF Marine Radio Transceiver, VHF Antenna Mounting Locations, All Specific for 1986 MONTAUK
HappyMac posted 06-13-2006 01:00 PM ET (US)   Profile for HappyMac   Send Email to HappyMac  
I am in the research mode trying to determine if a Garmin 178c GPS Sounder and Icom m302 VHF on 1986 Montauk is what I need. I will use both in the Chesapeake Bay, Virginia. Also Nags Head NC. I know I need the East Coast expanded board to cover that area.

[If you have my type of boat,] what do you think about my selected GPS and VHF? If you have a better selection or better upgrade, I appreciate your response. One more idea! I plan on mounting the antenna on the left side of the console. I have a bimini top so the 4 or 5 foot length is all I can mount. Again I need feedback if you don't mind.
Signing off with Thank You!

17 bodega posted 06-13-2006 02:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for 17 bodega  Send Email to 17 bodega     

as long as your VHF antenna has the lever adjustment, you can simply move it's location while using the bimini... I have done this.. .it might cut down your range but is better than buying a short antenna IMO.

I have your 178C model and a similar VHF (standard horizon). The distress beacon should work fine on both radios, so as long as you have a 25 watt signal and a quality antenna you should be fine. Great combo for a montauk in my opinion. I have a classic 16 hull and I love the split screen sounder/gps. I have the dual frequency 50/200kz transducer and it works great but in about 200+ feet of water it seems to lose the depth reading on full plane but still shows a faint red line for the bottom. Once I slow down to trolling speed, the bottom reading comes back... probably due to interference from the prop and motor. My previous LOWRANCE skimmer/transducer was quite a bit larger and had perfect readings despite engine rpms.

All in all, this is a screamin' setup and you should be all over the fish. For me the upgrade from handheld gps with a crayon mark to the full tilt chartplotter with the "blue chip" made all the difference and I'm a super happy camper.

Enjoy and tight lines.


jimh posted 06-13-2006 11:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I recommend you get a DSC CLASS-D VHF Marine Radio transceiver. The ICOM brand has been very slow to introduce any moderately-priced DSC CLASS-D transceivers. In this regard, Standard-Horizon and other brands seem to be ahead of ICOM. They have very cost-effective Class-D DSC radios.

I recommend you mount your VHF Marine Radio antenna as high as possible and in the clear as much as possible. This will have the greatest impact on how well the radio system will work.

I recommend you get a combination GPS, Chartplotter, and SONAR that is:

--within your budget
--appropriate in size for the space available on your helm console
--has chart cartography available for your area of navigation
--has good SONAR characteristics for your water depth.

jimh posted 06-14-2006 08:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
In regard to your location on in the Cheasapeake Bay area, I want to double my recommendation for getting a DSC CLASS-D radio for your boat. Your area will be one of the first to have the US Coast Guard RESCUE21 system in operation. The eastern shore region is already opeational. This will make the DSC CLASS-D radio much more beneficial to you immediately.


scubastevebiz posted 06-17-2006 12:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for scubastevebiz  Send Email to scubastevebiz     
The Garmin 178C is a good unit although it is on it's way out after this season I believe. Don't forget you will need charts with that unit. The newer units come preloaded with all the US charts. Not sure of your budget but you may want to take a look at the Garmin 498C too. You can't go wrong with a Garmin GPS they are a solid product and the company knows customer service.

With your radio take a look at the Standard Horizon Quest-X as an option to the IC-M302. While I don't have anything against an ICOM, I have one on my boat a 402. If I were purchasing one my self today I would probably lean more towards Standard.

If you must mount a shorter antenna, you should definitely go with [a particular brand]. They have the best antennas out there. A four-foot antenna is going to limit your range. [I disagree--see below.] I have an article [which is attribuyted to "anonymous"] on VHF at in the Boating section you might want to look at.

Let me know if I can help.

rumrunner posted 06-17-2006 10:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for rumrunner  Send Email to rumrunner     
The PS1000 is difficult to beat for a Montauk, in view of the limited space. Got mine for $95, and couldn't be happier. A very capable unit, and I have it wired to my Garmin 192C.
Highly recommended.
cdnwhaler posted 06-17-2006 01:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for cdnwhaler  Send Email to cdnwhaler     
I have PS1000 by Standard Horizon as well and I think it's difficult to beat for any of our smaller center console craft. I also have the Garmin 192C and I'm quite happy with it after one year, although I haven't yet wired the two together like rumrunner.
jimh posted 06-17-2006 04:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
The range of communication between two vessels is primarily determined by the height of the antennas. I demonstrated this in an article in the REFERENCE section. See:

I would rather have a smaller antenna mounted higher than a larger antenna mounted lower.

deepwater posted 06-17-2006 11:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for deepwater  Send Email to deepwater     
[Has pictures of his antenna installation available upon email resquests.]
jimh posted 06-18-2006 09:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I would be extremely interested to learn about the basis Steve has used to determine that the [particular brand of] antennas are "the best." I know Steve sells this [particular brand of] antennas at his retail store. But in the absence of any documented testing by an independent evaluator, I am very reluctant to publish any pronouncement that a particular antennas is 'the best."

In this regard, I am referring to the electrical performance of the antenna. It may be "the best" in terms appearance or in mechanical construction, but the particular basis for judging and how the judgment was reached should be made clear.

Also regarding the transmission line attenuation: in a well made VHF marine antenna the transmission line used on a small boat installation is typically less than 20-feet long. If the antenna uses good quality RG-58C/U coaxial cable which is manufactured to MIL-17-C specification, the attenuation for a 20-foot transmission line at 156 MHz (the VHF Marine Band) will be about 1.1-dB. This represents about a 23-percent loss of power. There is generally no way to avoid this except by changing to a much larger diameter transmission line. That approach is generally not acceptable on a small boat installation.

17 bodega posted 06-18-2006 02:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for 17 bodega  Send Email to 17 bodega     
The Garmin 178C is a good unit although it is on it's way out after this season I believe. Don't forget you will need charts with that unit.

I hope you are wrong as I just bought this unit at a blowout price (less than $500 with the transducter and chip for West Coat offshore)

As long as the warranty and support continue for several years I'll feel ok about it. I've read lots of good reviews from magazines and the like, and users seem to really dig the unit. My understanding is it is identical to the 192 other than the size and built in charts.


ratherwhalering posted 06-20-2006 09:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for ratherwhalering  Send Email to ratherwhalering     
Steve, rest easy. For $99.00-$129.00 Garmin will take back and refurbish/replace an older, out of warranty unit, then update the software, including the latest chart versions.
17 bodega posted 06-21-2006 12:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for 17 bodega  Send Email to 17 bodega     
Sweet! What type of cable is needed to upgrade the system software? I am wondering if I have the latest version in my unit.

HappyMac posted 06-21-2006 01:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for HappyMac  Send Email to HappyMac     
I have not been able to respond to all the help I have received. All I can say is Thanks
This is what I have done so far based on my original Topic. I did purchase the Garmin 178c GPS Sounder. I will get the disk that covers from Maryland to Florida. Now the interesting part that is still in question. I got enough good info to determine maybe the ICOM M302 is not what I think I wanted. I was given some good ideas on the Standard Horizon VHF. I now have a better idea on what the DSC CLASS-D transceivers do. I found out that ICOM has a M422 vhf basically the same as Standard Horizon, and the price is basically the same. I may be making a statement based on the sales people that ICOM has a very popular name on the Chesapeake Bay, VA Considering in this case I do not know my left hand from my right on these comments! What are your thoughts before I make the final decision on the best bang for the buck: ICOM-M422 or Standard Horizon QUEST-X GX1500S . Also I need feedback on a short antenna to match up to the final choice. I think it will be a rail mount over the console with a tilt base when the top is up. Again I need the feedback, and thanks again for the help. With the comments over a short time I have purchased boat/motor/trailer. I will pick up the Garmin GPS and duel-frequency 50/200 kHz Transducer. I hope my Buddy does not come up with idea of purchasing a Rocket ship!
Again thanks, and I look forward to your thoughts!

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