horsefly

Antenna replacement

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So Isaias blew thru and dropped a big limb on my tow vehicle and landed on the boat and thankfully only broke my antenna. I was a Digital 528 , a 4' model. Should I go for the big buck Digital or go with a cheaper model. Most of my fishing is within the 3 mile limit and the 4' length makes casting easier. Any opinions? Thanks

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When I had a tub big enough to venture out a ways I went with a bettr 8 foot glass. Laid it down to fish. Motor running it went up. More range/ump . IMHO... Stay safe  ,Stash

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You probably get plenty of range with the 4'

 

But its not how far off the beach you have to worry about, its how far from help/someone with a radio on are you?

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It's always a mistake to pair a good radio with a cheap antenna that affects signal quality.

 

In the end, that antenna could be your lifeline to help if things turn bad on the water.  You want to keep that lifeline as strong as you possibly can.

 

And sure, "most" of your fishing is within 3 miles of shore, but can you guarantee that the trouble won't arise on your longest trip of the year.

 

I learned a long time ago that the moment you step into a boat, Murphy steps in alongside you.  Plan for the worst, get the antenna that will best assure that you can reach help, and just fold it down for normal opearations.  It's some of the cheapest insurance that you'll ever buy.

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I guess I may have phrased it wrong. I don't mind paying for a good antenna, the Digital 528 runs around $130.00 for a 4' model. It served me well for a bunch of years, no problems getting in touch with anyone. I was just wondering if an 8' would be better. Does anyone have any opinions about Shakespeare antennas.

 

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1 hour ago, horsefly said:

I guess I may have phrased it wrong. I don't mind paying for a good antenna, the Digital 528 runs around $130.00 for a 4' model. It served me well for a bunch of years, no problems getting in touch with anyone. I was just wondering if an 8' would be better. Does anyone have any opinions about Shakespeare antennas.

 

Top-line Shakespeare antennas work well.  They also make cheaper versions, which are best avoided.

 

But as folks mentioned above, VHF is primarily line-of-sight, so all else being equal, including antenna quality, an 8-foot antenna will give you substantially longer range than a 4-foot. just because it lets your signal get out that much farther before it is interrupted by the Earth's curve.

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