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Old 28-03-2012, 11:31   #106
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

I believe that far more cruisers have SSB email functions than have HF/DSC. In my experience, the Winlink/Sailmail email is a reliable form of communications offshore if you have 15 to 30 minutes to compose and send a distress message. My question is where should you send it??

It would really be nice if some central RCC had a distress email address which was monitored every 10 minutes, but as far as I know that doesn't exist. I could send my brother an email, but it might be as long as 12 hours before he checks it...
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Old 28-03-2012, 16:22   #107
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

Hi Don,

I am not aware of a single email address, but look at www.bruniebay.net/bbradio/bbremergcontactlist for contact details of MRCCs in the Pacific and Indian Oceans and SE Asia.
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Old 28-03-2012, 18:36   #108
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

Quote:
I believe that far more cruisers have SSB email functions than have HF/DSC.
This side of the pond you can't buy any radio, vhf,mf, or hf legally that doesn't come with DSC. So there is a lot of systems so equipped.

Dave
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Old 29-03-2012, 16:17   #109
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

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Originally Posted by fairbank56 View Post
Point well taken about the advantages of HF DSC. As far as tens of thousands of commercial vessels monitoring 24/7 and hundreds of thousands of recreational vessels monitoring 24/7???

You continue to go on about the fanless M801. I have since learned through a colleague that the 801 does in fact have a large internal cooling fan and have seen reference to that on various websites advertising the M801. I also noticed a drawing of the bottom of the transceiver that shows a small circle of holes (ventilation?). I do not have first hand experience with the 801 but do have extensive servicing experience with the 802 and 710. Each have ventilation slots and internal fans that ONLY operate during transmit. Without firsthand experience or service manual, I can only assume the 801 operates the same way. Your selling point (twice in your last post) about radio's during receive mode other than the 801 having power sucking fans is a irrelevant. I will say based on the photo's Iv'e seen, that the 801 appears well sealed as compared to other marine SSB's. Perhaps this is why the 801 operates at a lower power than most other's.

Eric
Hi Faribank56. As promissed I checked with some contacts re fans in ICOM M801E radios.

Here is the response from a HAM friend in Australia who recently retired and closed his radio equipment sales & maintenance business:

"There are two distinct IC-801 models. Both have an internal power supply module that allows the radio to be used with either a Negative earthed or totally floating ships battery supply. Both models must only be used with the AT-141 tuner when powered from a floating supply.


The IC-M801E with AT-141 Tuner is the Class E DSC model for Non Solas small craft, normally for 12vdc operation but with 24vdc to order. Its functions are very similar to the lower priced earlier model IC-M802.


The IC-M801GMDS is the big ship (Big Price) model, normally ordered for 24vdc power to meet big ship emergency floating power supply requirements.
1. Is the radio body fully sealed from dust and salt air?

Both models sport the same heavy solid cast aluminium 9kg transceiver case which is claimed as waterproof. Note in the pictures the cover plates with gaskets for the unused D type connectors. Icom have certainly taken a lot of trouble to keep water out. Note the rubber covered ON/OFF switch on the transceiver case. This is a catch, if left on when away from the boat for an extended time, the radio will eventually flatten the battery, even though the Control Panel On/Off switch is off. The radio has a tiny crystal heater for instant stability when turning on to make an instant emergent call. This draws minuscule but constant power from the battery unless a Switched Circuit Breaker or Battery Master Switch is installed.

2. Does it have a fan?

No to my knowledge. Conduction cooling using the case.
3. Does the fan draw cooling air through the radio itself, or only for the power supply?


No, sheet metal case and internal fins to cool the PA as in earlier radios. The PA and power supply are all attached internally to the lower half of the case. To access internal fuse, the top half is removable (4 screws) followed by internal cover (39 screws).



I alsao contacted a UK ICOM seller who I know, who also provides training for DSC radio use:

Hello Alan

The Icom M801E does not have any fans and is in a sealed die-cast box which just a big heat sink weighing around 10 kgs.

So answer to your questions is:
1. Yes (Is the 801E fully sealed agains dust and salt air)
2. No (Does it have a fan?)
3. No (Does it have a fan on the pwer supply only?)


When I then asked how come I can see on an ICOM website -
http://www.icomuk.co.uk/IC-M801E/HF-SSB_Marine_Radio where it says "The large cooling fan ensures stable internal temperature even during high duty operation." his response is:


"I have two M801E (in stock) and have sold over 100 units and I have never heard or seen a fan, there are no vents for air to get into the M801E.
The die-cast box does get hot if you leave it on transmit for a long period, but I have never heard any fans trying to cool it down like you hear on the M802 or M710.

I can only think that it is an error in the Icom brochure!"


I hope this is useful.

Allan
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Old 30-03-2012, 05:23   #110
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

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Originally Posted by AllanR View Post
......................
I can only think that it is an error in the Icom brochure.........
Unfortunately errors in Icom brochures are not uncommon.
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Old 30-03-2012, 08:26   #111
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

"the reality of commercial ship comms"
Don, I think the reality of commercial ship *ownership* is more important. Bottom line is all the owners are concerned with. If the radios are optional and the owners can save a thousand dollars or more simply omitting them, we all know how that plays. If the radio is already in the design spec for what's being built now, it may still be there. Changing specs takes time and costs money.
But as the word gets out, in the next round of construction bids the radios will be omitted. Then the ones that need repair will be removed instead, since repairs cost money.
As to keeping watch, I've seen (with my own two eyes) and heard of commercial vessels where there was no deck watch, no brdige watch, and the ship was simply on autopliot and unattended for some time. The reality is, IT HAPPENS.
Crew cost money, crew pay conflicts with profits. It isn't just the occasional Elbonian freighter crew left stranded in some harbor without pay or food as owners abandon the ship, this happens under more than one flag, more than one owner.

I'm glad someone out there is responsible enough to keep radios and radio watches, but suspect they will become the rare exception to the rule. Or rather, the new lack of rule.
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Old 31-03-2012, 09:39   #112
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

There is a fair bit of confusion here.....

All vessels that have been required to carry mandatory equipment for the sea areas they operate in.....are still required to.....the mandatory carriage requirements are still the same....(I/We have heard nothing to the contrary)

A mandatory listening watch aboard GMDSS-equipped ships on 2182 kHz (Radiotelephone) ended on February 1, 1999.....where the hell have some of you guys been for the last 13 years....?

There are NO plans to remove any communication equipment from current requirements that i, or anyone i know in the industry, are aware of...........if anyone has any solid credible facts to prove otherwise, then please post it up......seriously, i would be genuinely interested.....

The answers are in the below link.....read the carriage requirements for "Sea Areas A1,A2,A3,A4" ......actually no, read the whole lot so you understand it all....

CHAPTER IV - RADIOCOMMUNICATIONS
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Old 01-04-2012, 12:08   #113
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Dave?
You remember a scene is Star Wars when they go to escape in the Millenium Falcon and hit hyperdrive, and the computers crap out and the ship just stalls? Thanks, no thanks, don't want my laptop, any laptop, any OS, involved in sending distress messages. Hit button, BSOD, Apple Bomb, whatever. No, even a tight *stard like me would prefer to hit a button built INTO the radio, no cables and no outside assistance needed.

Or a scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, involving the Holy Hand Grenade. What was it? Thou shalt pull the pin and count to three? Laptops, ham sound cards, equipment drifting or getting unplugged...I guess it would be a nice backup, to be used shortly before the note in the bottle.<G>

If I'm not mistaken the Falcon sufferred a total power outage in that scene...not just a computer glitch and I also seem to remember that it was the separate "laptop in a can" R2 unit that got it all going again.

Regardless you missed my point.

There are plenty of ways to send a specific format radio message. I suspect that even an old cassette player could be played into the microphone to "wake up" the automated watch keeper and gain a human's attention. (Much the same way you could fool a payphone into thinking coins were being inserted.)

My point is that, with or without a separate laptop, there are likely several ways for a non-DSC equiped radio to send a DSC compatible SOS regardless of licensing, radio vintage, cables or laptops.

I've been a ham for many years but I'm new to being Maritime Mobile.

I'm shocked that in the past 13 years the recrational boating community, and hams in particular, haven't come up with something acceptable.

Dave L38 #38
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Old 01-04-2012, 13:24   #114
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

Dave,

I searched the net looking for the DSC specs to learn how the messages are sent and received. The only technical info I could find was that they use 1300 and 2200 Hz tones. Nothing on data rates or messages formats. It could be that this info is not available free and requires a NDA to get access to it.

There is one possible ray of sunshine in the info I did find -- nothing was said that indicated that there are any differences between the VHF and HF DSC signaling and formats. If this is in fact true it might be possible to utilize a DSC VHF radio as a source of HF DSC messages to establish voice comm. This could be via a direct connection to the DSC VHF radio, or simply use the audio output from a separate VHF receiver as input to the HF radio.

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Old 01-04-2012, 13:54   #115
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

Dave, everything I've seen and heard about sound card adapters and interfaces for laptops and ham radio digital modes has always (always) come down to some folks having no problems at all, while others have nothing but problems with signal levels, or level matching, or just "mine doesn't work".

For a ham, one loving of experimenting and potching around, or a crazy Englishmen in a garden shed, that's just fine. For the "appliance operator" driving a boat...maybe not so fine, and a turnkey goofproof solution works better.

Like just buying a new DSC radio with GPS built in (eliminating more failure modes) or buying an EPIRB, which may skip the local resources but then again, sometimes there's nothing local.

So we make it part of ObamaCare, once or if the USSC decides the government can compel us all to buy anything, everyone has to buy a DSC radio, or pay a $200 fine for not buying one, or qualify to receive a free one under MediMarineCare.

Or we continue with what we've got now, a lot of good options IF the boater wants to invest in any one of them. And if they don't...that's OK, that's for the good of the herd too, one way or another.
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Old 01-04-2012, 17:10   #116
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

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Originally Posted by Viking Sailor View Post
Dave,

I searched the net looking for the DSC specs to learn how the messages are sent and received. The only technical info I could find was that they use 1300 and 2200 Hz tones. Nothing on data rates or messages formats. It could be that this info is not available free and requires a NDA to get access to it.

There is one possible ray of sunshine in the info I did find -- nothing was said that indicated that there are any differences between the VHF and HF DSC signaling and formats. If this is in fact true it might be possible to utilize a DSC VHF radio as a source of HF DSC messages to establish voice comm. This could be via a direct connection to the DSC VHF radio, or simply use the audio output from a separate VHF receiver as input to the HF radio.


heres a link to the ITU spec document
http://www.erikdeman.de/manuals/ITU_DSC_tech_spec.pdf

It is technically possible to FSK the mic on a VHF to generate DSC message.

HF DSC and VHF DSC have different parameters, and of course the frequencies are completely different

Dave
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Old 01-04-2012, 17:12   #117
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Dave, everything I've seen and heard about sound card adapters and interfaces for laptops and ham radio digital modes has always (always) come down to some folks having no problems at all, while others have nothing but problems with signal levels, or level matching, or just "mine doesn't work".

For a ham, one loving of experimenting and potching around, or a crazy Englishmen in a garden shed, that's just fine. For the "appliance operator" driving a boat...maybe not so fine, and a turnkey goofproof solution works better.

Like just buying a new DSC radio with GPS built in (eliminating more failure modes) or buying an EPIRB, which may skip the local resources but then again, sometimes there's nothing local.

So we make it part of ObamaCare, once or if the USSC decides the government can compel us all to buy anything, everyone has to buy a DSC radio, or pay a $200 fine for not buying one, or qualify to receive a free one under MediMarineCare.

Or we continue with what we've got now, a lot of good options IF the boater wants to invest in any one of them. And if they don't...that's OK, that's for the good of the herd too, one way or another.
Not sure what Obamacare has to do with DSC, but is it not the case that all radio for sale now in the US have to be DSC capable ( or is that by 2013).

Dave
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Old 16-04-2014, 08:07   #118
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

Thanks very interesting
Kat Carter
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Old 16-04-2014, 08:25   #119
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

I have a m802 ssb radio
I am British and so is my boat
I have a vhf short range certification and a ship radio licence ,Mmsi number,call sign,atis number and mf/hf, dsc license, can I transmit on the ham frequencies programmed on my ssb
I am in USA waters and plan to go to Bahamas
Kat
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Old 16-04-2014, 09:11   #120
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Re: HF SSB Ham Radio Option

While I've had both an SSB and Ham radios on my last two boats, my next boat will have neither. With each year I've found myself using them less and less. I sail in the Atlantic/Med - maybe it's different in the Pacific.

I don't see a lot of reason for these radios unless you love chatting on the nets (which I don't). Maybe the nets in the Pacific are more useful.

Close to shore, internet is pretty much always available. Offshore I use a Delorme Inreach paired to an iphone to receive daily weather and routing information and to keep in touch. It's also an excellent backup EPIRB. So far, it's been incredibly reliable.

Amazon.com: DeLorme AG-009871-201 InReach SE: GPS & Navigation

What tipped the balance is that the new Inreach "Freedom" subscription plan level can be changed each month for no charge. I'll only turn it on for months when I'm offshore.
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