Latest News: Forums Cruising VHF Radios – Any recommendations

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  • #7961
    Dave Barker

    A major factor in my choice was battery life

    Good point – in fact I cruised for over a week last year with just the one battery – my spare remained in the spare battery box for the whole time, although admittedly the vhf didn’t get used heavily by any means.


    Got my Standard Horizon vhf and so far very pleased with it.

    Only surprise is that the manual states the dry cell case (for AA’s) is ‘not to be used with rechargeable cells – does not contain the thremal and over-current protection circuits required when utilizing Ni-Cd and Ni-Mh cells’.

    I will freely admit to knowing next to nothing about anything electrical, but does anyone know if this is correct? Using (disposable) alkalines goes completely against the grain.


    Bob Harland

    If you are using Ni Cads or Ni MH batteries and they develop a fault then potentially that could damage your radio or worse.
    Perhaps it’s a warning that’s been introduced since laptops started going up in flames?


    you can use rechargeable cells in your standard horizon hx270



    I should declare an interest – I work for a large mobile phone company.

    It’s all about fault conditions and liability. The manufacturers rechargeable battery pack (like most mobile phones) is sealed and has some protection. In the event of a fault in the product like a short circuit the battery protection can trip (bit like a fuse) and prevent burning or smoke.

    Rechargeable batteries have a lower internal resistance than alkaline batteries. This means they can deliver more current into a short circuit than an alkaline can, so potentially in a fault condition like a short circuit (note careful choice of words here) they can cause more burning more quickly than alkaline batteries.

    When folks buy cheap knock-off battery packs for their laptops and mobile phones – there is often no fault protection hence the burning problems when a fault occurs. This is a common fault return for manufacturers and they will normally not accept liability when it can be shown that a non-approved battery has been used.

    Charging is another issue – my guess is that this battery pack would not connect to the vhf manufacturers charger anyway as they absolutely don’t want you to charge alkaline batteries. As you probably know Alkaline batteries are not designed for recharging and can explode if you try to do so. For this reason it’s probable that the battery pack is not compatible with the vhf charger.

    One possible fault condition that could cause a short is water ingress – There seems to be a fair bit of that in my boat anyway 😉



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