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Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

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  • Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?
    Situation: I have a 25 watt VHF radio on my boat with an 8’ Shakespeare antenna. This radio works fine. For Christmas my wife bought me a Class D Digital Selective Calling VHF radio. She felt I needed to added protection this radio offers when interfaced with my GPS chart plotter. I would like to keep both radios onboard so that I can monitor various channels simultaneously without having to mess with those scan features.

    Question #1: Can I purchase a splitter to run both radios in parallel off of 1 antenna?

    Question #2: Even if I can purchase a splitter and wire this thing up correctly, will 2 radios operate properly in parallel off just 1 antenna?

    Anyone got any experience with this… Your thoughts please???
    Keith

    1993 27' Crownline 250CR
    Volvo 740 (7.4 ltr. engine)
    DP-D1 Sterndrive

    iboats.com: A boat owner's best friend... if you're fortunate enough to be on land!

  • #2
    Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

    Doesn't sound safe to me, it sounds like a great way to fry radio A when you key up radio B. JMHO.
    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

    sigpic

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    • #3
      Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

      Wow! A lot of views and only 1 reply. Hey, don't be shy. If you have any information about this that is still more than I know.
      Keith

      1993 27' Crownline 250CR
      Volvo 740 (7.4 ltr. engine)
      DP-D1 Sterndrive

      iboats.com: A boat owner's best friend... if you're fortunate enough to be on land!

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

        I would find myself a marine radio technician as ask them.
        Ike
        New Boat Builders Home Page
        "Don't tell me that I can't, tell me how I can."
        Boating Safety Blog

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        • #5
          Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

          The only splitters I've found are for AIS/VHF sharing. They would allow you to transmit from only one of the units, and they cost as much as an antenna anyway. I would go for a separate antenna. This way you have redundant systems. Losing an antenna isn't that uncommon.
          Bob, Orange County NY
          '88 Bayliner 1700 Capri Bowrider, 85 HP Force O/B, "Sea Weasel"
          Want a vessel safety check? Click here. Want to join the Coast Guard Auxiliary? Click here.
          Disclaimer: Although I am a member of the USCG Auxiliary, the opinions and advice in my replies are my own and do not necessarily reflect CG or CG Auxiliary policy or regulations unless so specified.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

            What you are looking for is Directional Power Combiner.
            Not a Recieve Splitter!
            They are common in the Microwave world, not so much in the VHF world.

            I searched the Pasternack Catalog and can find none for use under 500 Mhz.
            Stock prices are from $350 to $1000

            They can make one for you on request. $$$$$
            A second antenna would be cheaper.

            Try to separate the antennas horizontally by at least 10 ft. to keep the transmitter from overloading the other receiver.

            Alternately, separate them vertically.
            One directly above the other.
            Antennas radiate out the sides. Not so much straight up and down.
            Bill, Lorain Ohio
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            • #7
              Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

              google; shakespear cs-2

              Designed specifically for this app. What brand antenna are you using?

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

                I am no expert on this but have seen people try the splitters and it seems to never work out well. I would want to seperate antennas for back up puposes.

                Chris Craft 254 Seahawk
                Visit my refurbish/upgrade project here.
                http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=483913

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

                  Originally posted by Pete104 View Post
                  google; shakespear cs-2

                  Designed specifically for this app. What brand antenna are you using?
                  He intends to operate both radios in lieu of scanning.
                  With the switch , the "Unswitched" Radio has no antenna and will not Recieve.
                  If it was for dual radios, at separate locations, one at a time only, the switch would work.

                  The Power combiner, or dual antennas, allows dual receive, along with dual transmit.
                  Bill, Lorain Ohio
                  ---------------------------------------------------
                  If you have not already done so....
                  To help you get better answers, Specific to your Location.
                  At the Top Right of this page, Click on 'Your Name'.
                  Then Click "User Settings".
                  In the "Location" Box, Enter your General Location. City, State.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

                    And having two radios is really nice, because then you can leave one on 16 and chatter on the other.

                    Chris Craft 254 Seahawk
                    Visit my refurbish/upgrade project here.
                    http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=483913

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

                      Options:
                      - install a second VHF antenna and use 'em both.
                      - sell the old radio and buy a portable.
                      Personally, I prefer a portable as a second radio. It's just more versatile than 2 fixed units.
                      The newer portables have amazing battery life.

                      Comment


                      • #12
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                        Re: Can I run 2 VHF radios off 1 antenna?

                        Originally posted by rfdfirecaptain View Post
                        Situation: I have a 25 watt VHF radio on my boat with an 8’ Shakespeare antenna. This radio works fine. For Christmas my wife bought me a Class D Digital Selective Calling VHF radio. She felt I needed to added protection this radio offers when interfaced with my GPS chart plotter. I would like to keep both radios onboard so that I can monitor various channels simultaneously without having to mess with those scan features.

                        Question #1: Can I purchase a splitter to run both radios in parallel off of 1 antenna?

                        Question #2: Even if I can purchase a splitter and wire this thing up correctly, will 2 radios operate properly in parallel off just 1 antenna?

                        Anyone got any experience with this… Your thoughts please???
                        Answers:

                        #1: No
                        #2: No

                        Comment

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