We just started our cruising in May so we have little experience but we did opt to installed a SSB for the following reasons:
1) Getting a HAM licenses is free and opens up free email
2) SSB weather and email is faster on the SSB than on the Iridium phone. Do not be fooled by the Iridium marketing. You will not be able to connect a computer to the phone or their Iridium Go or Iridium Access Point. You can download weather and very small emails but can do this only with an iPad or smart phone (two access points that can fail).
3) Learning to use the SSB will open up communications with Cruises nets, rally’s and with vessels with who you might buddy sail.
4) In an emergency it can serve as an excellent 2 way communication and can even connect you to emergency centers around the world.
5) We installed a separate antenna so if we ever lost the mast, we had a fighting chance with a radio.
6) Chris Parker and other weather services use SSB
7) The SSB is a large cost up front and nothing thereafter. The Sat phone is expensive every time you turn it on. It cost us about $5-7 for a GRIB file download of the east coast.
8) On a Sat phone, prepaid minutes expire and you need internet access or phone access to get more. Monthly plans are an ongoing expense that you still pay when not needed (like cruising areas near land on the east coast and Caribbean)
9) We have an SSB and also have a sat phone. We use the SSB 10:1 over the Sat phone. If you learn to use the SSB it will be your go to method.
10) There are still parts of the world where Sat phones are intermittent. SSB will always work.
Hope this helps
With best regards,
Super Maramu 2000
Currently cruising: Chesapeake Bay – Deltaville VA
From: amelyachtowners@... [mailto:amelyachtowners@...]
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2015 6:09 AM
Subject: [Amel Yacht Owners] SSB Radio
We are planning a round the world journey, and are preparing our boat now, one thing I'm not sure about is SSB radio. Is it something that we will use if we install?
Or will we not miss it out there?
It will not come for free and there are other items to consider.
Is this something for "dinosaurs" or are they still used nowadays?
We will have a satellite phone for mail and weather.
Whats your experience?
Have any of you any experience with the split lead back stay antenna?
I have heard from a few members of my Swedish cruising club and they are happy with it
Paul on SY Kerpa SM #259
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