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Marine Antennas - Exterior and Interior

on April 29, 2013

Marine antennas are required for harsh weather, water-intensive marine applications, due to increased emphasis on corrosion resistance.  Marine antenna mounts and cabling also requires added durability and waterproof qualities.

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The exterior marine antenna (301130) is specifically designed to lighter weight and corrosion resistance. It requires the purchase of the separate marine mount (901119). This high quality antenna is very durable as it has a stainless steel whip, fiberglass whip housing, stainless steel hardware, and chrome-plated brass mounting coupler. This antenna is completely weatherproof and waterproof. The available marine mount (901119) is required to install the marine antenna on your boat cabin roof or deck at various angles (standard 1 inch x 14 thread mount). This 50 ohm antenna includes a 7in RG-58 coaxial cable utilizing FME-Female connector so a separate cable (951125) is needed to connect the antenna to your amplifier.   Consider the pre-built marine antenna kit (308430) for a complete marine solution.

The marine antenna gain chart is shown below. 

gain-chart-for-marine-antenna.jpg

Other exterior antenna choices for your specific watercraft application may include all trucker exterior antennas which are weatherproof and perform well in all on-road, off-road, or fresh-water marine applications. These antennas are stainless steel built with chrome-plated bases and separate chrome-plated aluminum mounts.  Trucker antenna mounting options may require some customization for boat attachment as marine surfaces and railing differ from trucker settings.

Popular marine interior antennas include the powerful 50ohm Wide Band Panel antenna (N connector) and the Low-Profile antenna (FME connector).  The two recommended mounts for a boat setting are the pole-mount and the wall-mount. The pole-mounting panel antenna is weatherproof but requires having all mounting issues resolved prior to installing while the wall-mounting panel antenna is required to be mounted inside the cabin of a boat. The weatherproof, pole-mounting panel antenna (304453 – 50ohm option) is designed for outside use and is most suitable for open deck installations. The wall-mounting panel antenna (301135 – 50ohm option) is more suitable for in-cabin installations. It is recommended for larger boats or areas of coverage. The low-profile “Hershey bar” antenna (301127) is also a great candidate for wireless marine applications. This antenna comes with 14ft RG174 coaxial cable (FME-Female connector) and includes a 3M adhesive making it very easy to install. It is recommended for smaller, more targeted areas within a boat or for a small boat.

You may also consider interior vehicle antennas for your marine installation. The cradle antenna is the Cradle Plus (301146, FME-Female option). This non-wireless antenna utilizes a phone-holding cradle that requires a physical connection between your phone and antenna.  It is designed for single-user and hands-free application (Bluetooth or Speakerphone). It includes a 7.5ft RG-174 coaxial cable, two mounts, and adjustable cradle arms.  The wired interior antenna is the Ultra-Slim Velcro interior antenna (301143, FME-Female option). This antenna requires semi-permanent installation of a Velcro strip on the back of your phone and attachment of antenna each time the booster is needed. This antenna includes a 7.5ft RG-174 coaxial cable.

Another option is using the antenna/amplifier combos which combine the interior antenna with the amplifier unit into a single housing unit like the Sleek (based on Cradle Plus wired antenna) and the MobilePro (based on Low Profile wireless antenna). These SMA-Female amplifiers require a separate 971119 connector (FME-Male to SMA-Male) to attach a FME-Female marine or trucker exterior antennas to the amplifier unit. Both of these car amplifier solutions need to be securely attached to the boat interior to ensure safe operation on a moving watercraft.  Sleek may also require modification to prevent the phone from popping out of the slide-in cradle while in rough waters. Diverse mounting options exist for both of these amplifiers. 

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