Self-Levelling Radar Mount - Testing
The Scanstrut Self-Levelling mount has been a huge success since it was launched onto the market two years ago.
Aesthetically designed and expertly engineered to ensure your radar stays level with the horizon at all times for optimum antenna performance. As the boat heels or rolls, your radar will be kept horizontal, preventing target loss and giving the best possible radar picture.
For this testing, we supplied a pole mounted version to UK marine title Yachting Monthly. Read on to see the results...
On most scanners, vertical beam width is 25°, so if heeled more than 12.5°, echo strength will deteriorate and could be lost completely.
YM photographer Graham Snook’s Sadler 32, Pixie, beats with 20-25° angle of heel, occasionally 30° angle or above. Pixie has a Scanstrut self-levelling radar mount (as pictured).
To find out how the radar’s performance is affected by heel, an inclinometer was fitted to Pixie’s scanner and tied a line to it to induce 5°, 10°, 15°, 20°, 25° and 30° angle of heel. At each angle, we noted any effects on the radar screen.
To view footage from the testing, please click on the main photo above left.
To view the results, please download the article here.
"It’s in no way unusual to generate 20? of heel when sailing upwind, even more on older boats with less form stability. Our test shows clearly that, as expected, heeling does significantly affect the strength of a target’s echo, but what we might not have anticipated is just how much weaker the echoes are.
It would be difficult to look at the plots for 0? and 30?,as illustrated, and identify them as the same place. Perhaps the most concerning aspect of this test, though, is the comparatively low level of heel – just 10? – at which the MARPA target was lost. This makes a strong case for a self-levelling radar mount on board any yacht that does a fair amount of upwind sailing in areas with heavy traffic, such as the English Channel and North Sea."
Chris Beeson, Yachting Monthly (March 2010)