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Old 03 October 2013, 04:26   #1
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Radios - two numpty questions

Im getting all the kit ready for my new boat and have a couple of questions about radios:

Firstly;
  • should I have a handheld or fitted one, or both.
  • If both, why ?
Secondly;
  • as I intend to use the boat in Corsica, do I need a DSC equiped one - will this work in Corsica, as I thought it was UK based and also the MMSI number was only held by the UK coastguard.
Im assuming that I will connect the fitted radio to my Garmin GPS chartplotter so it gets a position, but for the handheld one do I need to get one with built in GPS, or just a cheaper one without if its in addition to the fitted. Obviously if I only have a handheld I need one with GPS - right ?

I dont mind spending money, but I dont want to waste it.
Do I even need a licence for using it in Corsica ?
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Old 03 October 2013, 04:49   #2
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A fixed radio has the following advantages:

Much higher transmit power (25W)

Runs off the ships battery so you don't have to worry about keeping it charged up

Big antenna mounted high up so receives transmissions from further away


A handheld has the following advantages

Can be attached to your lifejacket so when you go overboard you can call for help, useful if you work solo on the boat.

Can be easily used on several different craft

If you loose all electrical power on the vessel the handheld still works so you can still call for assistance



I have no knowledge on the rules and regulations re VHF in Corsica

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Old 03 October 2013, 05:00   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimix View Post
Im getting all the kit ready for my new boat and have a couple of questions about radios:

Firstly;
  • should I have a handheld or fitted one, or both.
  • If both, why ?
Secondly; [LIST][*]as I intend to use the boat in Corsica, do I need a DSC equiped one - will this work in Corsica, as I thought it was UK based and also the MMSI number was only held by the UK coastguard.
This link might help Contacts

Its the Office For transport in Corsica and deals with Maritime matters. They should be able to answer your questions as to the legal requirements in your Country.

You can also check here as new rules came in in 2008 regarding boating in French territorial waters Directions Departementales des Affaires Maritime best to do a google search for the web site and contact details

i would presume that the radio will require registering in Corsica and they will issue your call sign and MMSI number.

As to whether you need a fixed or handheld, as Chris said they both have advantages / disadvantages. If you chose just one, the fixed makes more sense as it can be linked to the chartplotter and will receive position updates, runs off the main battery and should have a better range
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Old 03 October 2013, 05:01   #4
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Ah, good point about the power.

So a decent handheld will stand up to a dunking then ? I suppose it ought to really, otherwise its a waste of time.

I also imagine I can use the built in one to call the handheld, which may be used by someone shorebased, say at the Marina/Beach/whatever.
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Old 03 October 2013, 06:03   #5
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register the RIB under the SSR this make s it British flagged vessel - then it's the British regulation you comply with and fly the red ensign So you can use RYA certificates without any hassle! SSR - Small Ships Register - this also helps prove ownership etc. MMSI are internationally issued - no issue using them in Coastal or sea . issues using them in inland waters ad they are illegal in few countries to use on inland. consider buy the Nautilus lifeline radio - www.nautiluslifeline.com - DSC divers radio 425 foot waterproof. I sell these if you want a price retail is 254 inc Vat. S.
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Old 03 October 2013, 06:18   #6
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OK, well I was intending to register the boat in the UK, so I suppose then it only has to comply with UK regulations, not Corsican - is that correct ?

But if I press the Red button (make a distress call) using a DSC radio while in Corsica - will they get my details via the transmitted MMSI number ? Will they also get my location ?

Is there a worldwide database for MMSI numbers ? I got the impression they were just UK based.

(I like the look of that Nautilus radio, I will have a think about that)
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Old 03 October 2013, 06:20   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SPR View Post
register the RIB under the SSR ANC make s British flagged vessel - then it's the British regulation you comply with and fly the red ensign

So you can use RYA certificates without any hassle!

SSR - Small Ships Register - this also helps prove ownership etc.

MMSI are internationally issued - no issue using them in Coastal or sea . issues using them in inland waters ad they are illegal in few countries to use on inland.

consider buy the Nautilus lifeline radio - www.nautiluslifeline.com - DSC divers radio 425 foot waterproof. I sell these if you want a price retail is 254 inc Vat.

S.
+1 about registering the boat in the UK If you are keeping it permanently in Corsica, there may be different rules, speak to the RYA about that. If at all possible, keep it UK registered. I know of French citizens that register their boats in the UK or Belgium (slightly dodgy but they get away with it) to avoid the red tape and cost, that comes with French registration. I believe that there is an annual tax on French pleasure boats, but I could be wrong. French registered boats have different operating limits to foreign registered boats, you might find that you are only allowed 6 miles from "abri" which in reality on an island is 6 miles offshore. The Red Ensign also reduces the interest of the (many)French authorities in your boat, The Gendarmerie & Affaire Maritime tend to leave you alone, the Douanes still like a sniff though.
Keep it Brit
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Old 03 October 2013, 06:32   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimix View Post
OK, well I was intending to register the boat in the UK, so I suppose then it only has to comply with UK regulations, not Corsican - is that correct ? Yes

But if I press the Red button (make a distress call) using a DSC radio while in Corsica - will they get my details via the transmitted MMSI number ? Will they also get my location ? Yes if connect to GPS

Is there a worldwide database for MMSI numbers ? I got the impression they were just UK based.

http://www.itu.int/online/mms/mars/ship_search.sh

(I like the look of that Nautilus radio, I will have a think about that)
see answers in red
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Old 03 October 2013, 06:37   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimix View Post
Ah, good point about the power.

So a decent handheld will stand up to a dunking then ? I suppose it ought to really, otherwise its a waste of time.

I also imagine I can use the built in one to call the handheld, which may be used by someone shorebased, say at the Marina/Beach/whatever.
I use ICOM handheld radios. They are waterproof, and the one I have floats (useful if it drops in the water accidentally and yes that does happen). I have taken the handheld in the water with me while teaching dinghy capsize drills and it has not suffered from that. I have no doubt that if I was ejected from a rib the handheld radio would work in the water unless if was physically destroyed by impact.

Yes you can use the ships radio to call the handheld but the handheld may need its own licence (that would be the case in the uk). I have a ships radio licence for the fixed (with mmsi number as it is DSC), a transportable licence for the handheld (with its own callsign so can be used on any vessel or tender) and a short range radio operators licence for me. In the uk a transportable can be used on a ship, its tender, or by a marina office or sailing club. I believe the usage of a vhf from the shore is not strictly legal in the UK (would need to look that up in the rules).

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Old 03 October 2013, 06:41   #10
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If you have not done the VHF SRC ( the questions indicate that you have not) then I would suggest that you do, !! as you WILL require a licence in foreign waters.
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