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Old 16 December 2004, 19:28   #11
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Stu, I quite like the oul 'Torch under the bed sheets' approach myself

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Old 16 December 2004, 20:49   #12
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Marine VHF

Brucehawkser.

To reply to you and many others.

I have been using various Radio's for 26 years now. Marine for one year.

Marine Radio procedure is unbeliveably bad and frustrating. It needs dragging in to the 21st century.

IMHO and I have the experience and usage of many Radio networks. Channel 16 should only be for Emergency's and nothing else. DSC seems to have recognised this. It becomes apparent once an emergency arises that the Coastguard have a problem with using effective communications. They want to use Ch 16 and so does everybody else for radio checks, time checks, and talking to their friends.

I feel quite strongly about this. Marine VHF needs a good sort out.

In fact I use VHF everyday and understand its limitations and strong points.

A lot of marine VHF etiquette is archaic. Lets decide that channel 16 is the emergency channel and keep it as that. Then lets choose an amatuers channel. That includes all of us on RIB NET. We can chat on that. Keeping our conversations short and to the point. The big ships and Port Authority's can use the rest of the channels.

What I will say is the actual Radio sets are very good, whether it be Icom, Navman or somebody else, they are all very good. We just need to sort out the frequency allocation, and how we use these sets.

In the Army, swing the lantern etc, you never do a radio check. You trust the equipment. Doing a Radio check, ties up the frequency and gives your location away. We should have a few frequencies that we can use and stick to them.

Leave 16 to emergencys and the emergency services and give Joe Bloggs another channel.
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Old 19 December 2004, 08:20   #13
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Biggles, you make some interesting points here...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Biggles
Marine Radio procedure is unbeliveably bad and frustrating. It needs dragging in to the 21st century.
Err, ummm... is it the procedure or the users of marine radios, that need dragging into the C21st?
Quote:
It becomes apparent once an emergency arises that the Coastguard have a problem with using effective communications. They want to use Ch 16 and so does everybody else...
That's why the C'guard will announce a "Seelonce" during an emergency. The correct procedure during a seelonce is to make no use of Ch16 whatsoever unless it's a "mayday" transmisison.
Quote:
Lets decide that channel 16 is the emergency channel and keep it as that.
It's the distress and calling channel.
Quote:
Then lets choose an amatuers channel. That includes all of us on RIB NET. We can chat on that.
That's what exactly what 6, 8, 72 and 77 are for; your mobile 'phone is for the chatting!
Quote:
Keeping our conversations short and to the point.
That's the whole point of of marine VHF - transmissions are supposed to be exactly that. It's technically illegal to chat about non-essential stuff
Quote:
The big ships and Port Authority's can use the rest of the channels.
They do!
Quote:
In the Army... you never do a radio check. You trust the equipment.
What the Army do isn't necessarily appropriate to marine use. We are reponsible for our own equipment, and it's not checked by a techie every time it's returned to the QM's.
Quote:
Doing a Radio check, ties up the frequency...
This has been recognised by Solent Coastguard who request that all radio checks are done on Ch 67.

All of this is covered on the SRC course. Have you taken this yet or just forgotten a large section of the content?
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Old 19 December 2004, 12:44   #14
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Well Done Richard excellent reply
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Old 20 December 2004, 08:10   #15
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Thank you for all the above. My view is that no amount of classroom work will ever compensate for being out in the briney and doing it! The problem is who to do it with. I don't want to upset Solent CG and there are precious few friends out at this time of year - channels 67 and 16 even seem pretty quiet - or is it my radio????

The key point is that I do not have confidence - either in me as a newbie operator, or necessarily in my new kit.

I would jump at the opportunity

1) to go out in the tug - thanks for the offer

2) to go out in tandem with another rib owner with a DSC radio (it is DSC I am concerned about, not the rest of the radio proceedures) and get some practice communicating using DSC (and non DSC) so that, if it is ever a real 'situation' I am not screwing things up
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Old 20 December 2004, 08:24   #16
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Bruce

One other option,
If you are coming up to the boat show come and find me.
You can play with our "live" DSC radio's on the stand.
They are set up so you can send messages back and forth between them.
This inc's all levels of DSC messages, distress, safety, urgency and individaul.

You can also send "live" voice between them as well.

Please feel free to come and spend as much time as you wish on the stand trying out DSC.
I and the team will be on hand to walk you through or refresh your memory and help in anyway we can.

Just another idea to help.

Regards
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Old 20 December 2004, 08:55   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard B
Biggles, you make some interesting points here

(Snipped to highlight the poignant wit contained within)

All of this is covered on the SRC course. Have you taken this yet or just forgotten a large section of the content?
I second TimG's response to Biggles.

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Old 21 December 2004, 04:32   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brucehawsker
Am I alone in being a little awed by the technology, never having used a radio to transmit before in my life?
I used to feel that way Bruce, so your not alone there. It's always quite scary phoning the police never mind trying to get your p's and q's right over the airwaves with the coast guard! Lets face it the coasty is a member of the emergency services.

Personally I should probably use the VHF more but instead choose to phone my friends if I want a chat or just to find out where they are so that I can meet up.

I tend to (rightly in my book) look at VHF as primarily an emergency and safety tool........I do have mates that will only call on VHF, but for some reason I always feel happier when someone else initiates the call as it's easier and I don't have to think........"hmm now which upper channel can I use to continue the conversation!?"

I have a bad enough memory as it is.......I can't remember the birds birthday without prompting and we've been together for 6 years!!
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Old 21 December 2004, 04:41   #19
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Originally Posted by pettal
I always feel happier when someone else initiates the call as it's easier and I don't have to think........"hmm now which upper channel can I use to continue the conversation!?"
A laminated crib sheet is what you need. It's also useful to laminate the emergency procedure (helpfully printed in the back of the RYA's VHF/SRC course book) as it's easy to forget vital things in the heat of an emergency and getting it right first time saves valuable time. Also, you may be incapacitated and need to rely on an (untrained) crew member to make the call.

Of course, letting your crew know where you keep the crib sheet is vital but this could be included as part of a safety briefing before setting out, along with where you keep the other emergency items, and a few 'what if...' scenarios. Before anyone accuses me of going over the top, I think it's important to do this whenever you have new people on board but hopefully they'll remember next time so won't need to do a briefing every time you go out with them!

Just MHO of course!
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Old 21 December 2004, 04:58   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Louise
A laminated crib sheet is what you need. It's also useful to laminate the emergency procedure (helpfully printed in the back of the RYA's VHF/SRC course book) as it's easy to forget vital things in the heat of an emergency and getting it right first time saves valuable time. Also, you may be incapacitated and need to rely on an (untrained) crew member to make the call.

Of course, letting your crew know where you keep the crib sheet is vital but this could be included as part of a safety briefing before setting out, along with where you keep the other emergency items, and a few 'what if...' scenarios. Before anyone accuses me of going over the top, I think it's important to do this whenever you have new people on board but hopefully they'll remember next time so won't need to do a briefing every time you go out with them!

Just MHO of course!

Funnily enough the emergency procedure is imprinted on my brain, but I do agree a crib sheet is probably a good idea. Luckily everyone that comes on the boat has either a boat of their own, had boats and most if not all are qualified to use the VHF........benefits of living on a small Island!

Also most of us at one point or another has needed assistance via the VHF. Some more than others!

We also have a tradition between us that all our women go on VHF training courses even if they don't want to helm the boat or even get on it......based purely on the fact that I'm not infalible and even bad things happen to lucky tw@ts!
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