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Old 04 May 2005, 11:58   #1
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Country: UK - England
Town: Hertfordshire
Boat name: Enfield Explorer
Make: Ribcraft
Length: 6m +
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Testing DSC

Afternoon all.

Bit dissappointed that after spending hundreds and hundereds of pounds on new radio kit 18 months ago, we were unable to raise Portland coastguard from (outside) Lulworth Cove over the weekend, either on our VHF or DSC unit (checked with coastie today, and no record on thier logs of either VHF or DSC call into them from us, though I tried them several times on separate days).

Both bits of kit are Icom (M401 and DSC100) but before superadioman has a seizure, I suspect problems are with aerials, not Mr Brook's kit.

I've remade all the aerial connections, soldered some bits that weren't (plugs on ends of co-ax where plugged into radio) and am off with a borrowed SWR meter in a little while to see if all is now OK with the VHF.

Question is, how do I know if the DSC is working. Boat is now out of the water (and in Hertfordshire). Next time I go to the coast, I will of couse DSC the coastguard again, but if its not fixed, it will be a little late by then.

I will connect the DSC aerial to the VHF, and SWR that, but it still doesn't tell me the DSC is working.

Anyone with a DSC set in VHF range of South Herts who could try bouncing signals with me?
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Old 06 May 2005, 02:38   #2
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Country: UK - England
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Make: Ribcraft Seasafari
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Rads

The was we sugest you test the DSC and the HMGC say the same is to do and indivdaul call to either the coasties or another vessel.
If the part works all the DSC functions will.

It looks in your case that this is not possible.
Is there another boat near by that you can do a test DSC call to?

Just as a thought you do have 2 antenna's fitted?
One to the radio and one to the Radio?

Not sure if this really helps.

We would be happy to check the kit out for you if you send it back.

Regard
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Old 06 May 2005, 07:08   #3
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Country: UK - England
Town: Hertfordshire
Boat name: Enfield Explorer
Make: Ribcraft
Length: 6m +
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Jon

Found some pretty shocking connections in the aerials, and would be surprised if this wasn't the cause of our problems. Will try HMGC before we go too far next time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Brooks
Is there another boat near by that you can do a test DSC call to?
Still open to offers (Hertfordshire with DSC anyone?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Brooks
Just as a thought you do have 2 antenna's fitted?
One to the radio and one to the Radio?
No, we went with the more traditional one on the VHF and one on the DSC

David
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Old 06 May 2005, 16:43   #4
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If I remember right, you can send a DSC call to yourself? - place a call, punch in your own MMSI number and send... your unit should tell you about the receipt of the call if that helps.

When I first had the DSC unit, I was keen to test it, and did that myself - a few seconds after I had sent myself the call (sad isn't it, just like sending yourself an e-mail), the unit received a distress message which had me semi-concerned for a bit (incase I had sent the wrong thing!!) - the unit had actually picked up an epirb distress emission which was relayed by the coastguard.

-Alex
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