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Old 17 September 2012, 08:56   #11
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Spending time on routine calls and DSC seems like an excellent component of the course.
The thing that disappointed me most on my course was not hearing a well constructed "traffic report". The CG want people to tell them their plans but unlike the Mayday message which should take a standard format (although in fact in the heat of the moment any clear message will do) it strikes me that people would be more likely to file if the expectation was clear.
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Old 17 September 2012, 09:01   #12
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The thing that disappointed me most on my course was not hearing a well constructed "traffic report". The CG want people to tell them their plans but unlike the Mayday message which should take a standard format (although in fact in the heat of the moment any clear message will do) it strikes me that people would be more likely to file if the expectation was clear.

for me you have hit your own nail on the head....

As long as its CLEAR it really doesn't matter how you say it ...its not an emergency and the big advantage of having a person on the radio is that our/thier brains ( hopefully ) can make sense of stuff.

I love talking on the radio .. I just always say to myself and onyone else that the person on the other end is there to make life easier / safer/ more simple etc ....
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Old 17 September 2012, 09:02   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poly View Post
The thing that disappointed me most on my course was not hearing a well constructed "traffic report". The CG want people to tell them their plans but unlike the Mayday message which should take a standard format (although in fact in the heat of the moment any clear message will do) it strikes me that people would be more likely to file if the expectation was clear.
Hmm. I'm sure it was part of my course talking about general structures. Either call up and they then ask for specific info or make a list and read it out.

Usually POB, time on route, perhaps roughly where youre going and that you'll check in when you get there
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Old 17 September 2012, 15:52   #14
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is there anyway to programme them all as a group, make a group call to all the CG's and let whichever is local answer? Whilst I'm sure I will get a response if I call "Clyde Coastguard" when I am actually in "Stornoway's" patch with a voice call, presumably that is a potential problem with DSC?
No there is no way, and if there was no you shouldn't use that method! Your DSC message will go to potentially 3 CGs the one you want the one to your left and the one to your right. On the west coast of Scotland ireland too...

Your reach will be further than with voice. You'd have CG waiting for your voice call on 67 which they might never get.

Group Calling requires a Group MMSI and you'd need both the CG and you to have it in the set.
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Old 17 September 2012, 16:01   #15
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Yes. To my mind, for routine traffic DSC just adds another layer of complication and delay to what should be quick and simple communication. Direct calling to CG on a working channel, bypassing 16, seems a good idea.
If you accept that a normal CG station has a limitted number of staff, is listening to 16 (possibly only on speaker although in Solent they would never get anything done!) and someone taking phone calls and communicating with shore teams then its not realistic for everyone to have a listening watch on 67 as well as 16. A DSC call provides that capabiliy for you.

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The real benefit of DSC is the automatic distress and urgency alerting which, provided the VHF is connected to a GPS, gives a position (and slightly better range than voice calls). It takes just a few seconds, there is no need to talk if there's no time.
Clearly the magic red button is important. However, I think the menu structure is teribble on any set i've used. I'd far rather press the red button briefly to get a choice of distress reasons and switch between urgency and distress. Hold it in to just transmit with an unspecified alert.
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Old 18 September 2012, 15:48   #16
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I like DSC and use it frequently. However, I never use it to contct the CG for routine messages and can't see any benefit for doing so. Any non-urgent communication to the CG will always require voice communication so I just go straight to voice and get to the point as succinctly as possible.

The benefits of DSC from my persepective are a simple emergency system for non-trained radio users and also to get position reports or strike up contact will other boaters when I'm cruisung in company or can see the MMSI from AIS. The downside is the need to enter 9 digit 'phone' numbers if you haven't got them preprogrammed.
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Old 18 September 2012, 15:52   #17
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I like DSC and use it frequently. However, I never use it to contct the CG for routine messages and can't see any benefit for doing so. Any non-urgent communication to the CG will always require voice communication so I just go straight to voice and get to the point as succinctly as possible.

The benefits of DSC from my persepective are a simple emergency system for non-trained radio users and also to get position reports or strike up contact will other boaters when I'm cruisung in company or can see the MMSI from AIS. The downside is the need to enter 9 digit 'phone' numbers if you haven't got them preprogrammed.
Which is why AIS combined with an NMEA2k radio is so good because it gives "click and call" functionality

The whole group CG thing is not a bad idea though..
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Old 18 September 2012, 16:32   #18
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I never use it to contct the CG for routine messages and can't see any benefit for doing so.
The benefit is probably not yours. Either you may be overspeaking someone who is too far from you to hear or you are using airtime on 16 when it should be free for emergency work.

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Which is why AIS combined with an NMEA2k radio is so good because it gives "click and call" functionality

The whole group CG thing is not a bad idea though..
CG stations have AIS - so can you point and click them? Doesn't help if the CG station is MILES and MILES away (Berwick --> Humber!) as wont be on screen.
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Old 18 September 2012, 16:40   #19
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The benefit is probably not yours. Either you may be overspeaking someone who is too far from you to hear or you are using airtime on 16 when it should be free for emergency work.
To be fair, our CG expect all routine calls to be made on 82. If you call on 16 they almost condescendingly ask you to change to the working channel. There is an even higher risk of overspeaking someone as it is duplex too! But it seems to work fine overall.
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Old 18 September 2012, 17:46   #20
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The benefit is probably not yours. Either you may be overspeaking someone who is too far from you to hear or you are using airtime on 16 when it should be free for emergency work.


CG stations have AIS - so can you point and click them? Doesn't help if the CG station is MILES and MILES away (Berwick --> Humber!) as wont be on screen.
You would be able to do this however not really practical seeing as AIS range on a RIB is only 10nm absolute tops. Best thing to do is just program them all into your phone book on the drive at home
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