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Old 16 March 2014, 15:05   #1
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2nd Hand VHF DSC Worries

Got out in holyhead bay on saturday for the first time this year, blowing the cobwebs away and jumping some rather large waves next minute the DSC alarm goes off so we stayed where we were to monitor any developments. holyhead coastguard made numerous attempts to make contact with the vessel which they believed to be a 32ton fishing boat. various boats and mobile coastguard patrols were tasked with scanning the horizon for any sign of said fishing boat. next minute, a member of the public called 999 and reported seeing red flares off south stack. trearddur bay lifeboat then located 'a small boat which had taken a huge wave and sustained damage'. it seems all crew were ok and the boat was escorted home. the coastguard were confident that the small boat was the one that sent out the dsc alert.
my own theory on this (that is all it is) is that the small boat was probably fitted with a second hand radio which hadnt been reset and new mmsi programmed in. this of course caused a lot of confusion at a time when time cannot be wasted.
ebay is full of used radios, so makes me wonder how many other radios are fitted in boats they dont belong to with the operator thinking 'oh it will be ok'. maybe manufacturers should rethink the idea of how radios are reset?
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Old 16 March 2014, 15:52   #2
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Got out in holyhead bay on saturday for the first time this year, blowing the cobwebs away and jumping some rather large waves next minute the DSC alarm goes off so we stayed where we were to monitor any developments. holyhead coastguard made numerous attempts to make contact with the vessel which they believed to be a 32ton fishing boat. various boats and mobile coastguard patrols were tasked with scanning the horizon for any sign of said fishing boat. next minute, a member of the public called 999 and reported seeing red flares off south stack. trearddur bay lifeboat then located 'a small boat which had taken a huge wave and sustained damage'. it seems all crew were ok and the boat was escorted home. the coastguard were confident that the small boat was the one that sent out the dsc alert.
my own theory on this (that is all it is) is that the small boat was probably fitted with a second hand radio which hadnt been reset and new mmsi programmed in. this of course caused a lot of confusion at a time when time cannot be wasted.
ebay is full of used radios, so makes me wonder how many other radios are fitted in boats they dont belong to with the operator thinking 'oh it will be ok'. maybe manufacturers should rethink the idea of how radios are reset?

Tend to agree with your theory. A worrying underlying issue, and a minefield to put right
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Old 16 March 2014, 16:18   #3
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maybe manufacturers should rethink the idea of how radios are reset?
Think you'll find its the Americans are responsible rather than the manufacturers.

If you are going to fit DSC you'd think you'd fit GPS so even if you are looking for the wrong thing you'd be looking in the right place...

Now... ...technically have you been a naughty boy?

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Old 16 March 2014, 16:43   #4
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oh come on!!!!
a far cry from the junk that gets posted on fb - my posting is of public interest with a true story to back it up. no names etc mentioned so hardly likely to cause offence
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Old 16 March 2014, 18:08   #5
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Got out in holyhead bay on saturday for the first time this year,....holyhead coastguard made numerous attempts to make contact with the vessel which they believed to be a 32ton fishing boat....
my own theory on this (that is all it is) is that the small boat was probably fitted with a second hand radio which hadnt been reset and new mmsi programmed in.... maybe manufacturers should rethink the idea of how radios are reset?
OR just as possibly, someone filled in a form wrongly (and it was 3.2 ton - or some other random guess at size!). Ofcom and the MCA could look at their VHF/DSC registration and CG66 forms to make them more intuitive to the amateur boater...

I'm not convinced the ITU have their rules right on reprogrammability of DSC radios - but I can see just as many issues with un-programmed, or randomly entered DSC numbers too.
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Old 16 March 2014, 18:17   #6
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Think you'll find its the Americans are responsible rather than the manufacturers. If you are going to fit DSC you'd think you'd fit GPS so even if you are looking for the wrong thing you'd be looking in the right place... Now... ...technically have you been a naughty boy?
???????????????????
Is he not making folk aware of the dangers and problems of 2nd hand Dsc vhf's
Not as if someone died and he making that public etc!
I'm crew on local rnli and I think on 2 occasions we had this where looking for a vessel and been told colour but vessel been different
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Old 16 March 2014, 18:34   #7
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oh come on!!!!
a far cry from the junk that gets posted on fb - my posting is of public interest with a true story to back it up. no names etc mentioned so hardly likely to cause offence
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???????????????????
Is he not making folk aware of the dangers and problems of 2nd hand Dsc vhf's
Not as if someone died and he making that public etc!
I'm crew on local rnli and I think on 2 occasions we had this where looking for a vessel and been told colour but vessel been different
I agree Fester has made a very valid point
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Old 16 March 2014, 18:47   #8
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I agree Fester has made a very valid point
If it's true about the second hand set why would you try and save a 5 when new sets are so reasonably priced these days
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Old 16 March 2014, 20:49   #9
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If you are going to fit DSC you'd think you'd fit GPS so even if you are looking for the wrong thing you'd be looking in the right place...
Given all the threads on here about people having problems connecting the two, you're surprised about it? How many boaters don't read a forum like this one, where people are (usually) helpful? My guess would be more than do.

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Old 17 March 2014, 04:04   #10
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I think the comment shiny shoe made regards posting what you hear on the VHF was tongue in cheek although he is correct.

He got a few bites out of it too!
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