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Old 08-01-2017, 09:24   #1
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How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

HI,

I am a HAM.
Have MUltiPSK software and Signalink USB running.
Via MultiPSK it is possible to receive weatherfax via the "FAX" mode, on German (Hamburg) or UK (Northwood).
Next to Navtex (MF) there are also WX forecasts via RTTY 50 baud.
Possible to receive with MultiPSK via RTTY 50 baud-mode. I do receive the numeric codes as documented. How can I decode these to read forecasts?
There is a "Synops - Ship" button that opens a screen with a map etc but it only runs for 5 min without "a license".

Is there other freeware (or payable software) to decode these WX forecasts eg. german freqqiencies on 4, 7 and 10 Mhz? is that JVCOMM?

Tha s,

Jan
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Old 08-01-2017, 10:34   #2
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

jvcomm is indeed one. The free version puts a ghosted text "FREE" on the screen (or something like that), but it's usable. It's cheap to buy though. There are others that also work well, usually with a free evaluation period.
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Old 08-01-2017, 10:39   #3
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

You can view weatherfax with opencpn:Weatherfax | Official OpenCPN Homepage

OpenCPN - Cruisers & Sailing Forums

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goudurix View Post
HI,

I am a HAM.
Have MUltiPSK software and Signalink USB running.
Via MultiPSK it is possible to receive weatherfax via the "FAX" mode, on German (Hamburg) or UK (Northwood).
Next to Navtex (MF) there are also WX forecasts via RTTY 50 baud.
Possible to receive with MultiPSK via RTTY 50 baud-mode. I do receive the numeric codes as documented. How can I decode these to read forecasts?
There is a "Synops - Ship" button that opens a screen with a map etc but it only runs for 5 min without "a license".

Is there other freeware (or payable software) to decode these WX forecasts eg. german freqqiencies on 4, 7 and 10 Mhz? is that JVCOMM?

Tha s,

Jan
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Old 08-01-2017, 15:51   #4
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

from memory jvcomm decodes the synops, settings for dwd below.

You should be able to get wfax from northwood (if it's broadcasting) and dwd.
search for rfax.pdf from the schedule.

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Old 08-01-2017, 16:12   #5
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

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Originally Posted by petter5 View Post
Thanks for this! OpenCPN just keeps getting better!

I downloaded the app (had to upgrade OCPN first), and will try it out ASAP. I will report back to this thread.
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Old 09-01-2017, 22:18   #6
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

About the WFAX plugin for OpenCPN, I've had a chance to play with it, and while it works, the user interface and features don't really line up with my expectations. Here are some of the issues I have with it:
  • I can't get it to auto-sync a received WFAX
  • It saves multiple received WFAX images as one big image file
  • It only decodes WFAX, and not any other digital weather products
  • Saving audio capture files seems difficult (not that this is something we would normally do)
The program does have nice features for displaying the WFAX image as a chart overlay. I could use this plugin if I had to, but other programs have the features I prefer. Since I haven't spent much time with the program, I may be missing some details.

For testing, I used my Icom IC-7200 (which has a USB "virtual sound card" interface), and off-the-air WFAX broadcasts.
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Old 10-01-2017, 01:35   #7
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

Then. head over to the opencpn forum OpenCPN - Cruisers & Sailing Forums and suggest improvements and clarifications and there is a big chanche that improvements will be done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Elliott View Post
About the WFAX plugin for OpenCPN, I've had a chance to play with it, and while it works, the user interface and features don't really line up with my expectations. Here are some of the issues I have with it:
  • I can't get it to auto-sync a received WFAX
  • It saves multiple received WFAX images as one big image file
  • It only decodes WFAX, and not any other digital weather products
  • Saving audio capture files seems difficult (not that this is something we would normally do)
The program does have nice features for displaying the WFAX image as a chart overlay. I could use this plugin if I had to, but other programs have the features I prefer. Since I haven't spent much time with the program, I may be missing some details.

For testing, I used my Icom IC-7200 (which has a USB "virtual sound card" interface), and off-the-air WFAX broadcasts.
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Old 10-01-2017, 04:13   #8
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

Hi guys,

have installed the JC Comm demo version.
It works though sometimes it needs time to start decoding the RTTY messages. The HF weatherfax image quality is lots better then when receiving that via MultiPSK.
For Navtex I like Frisnit Navtex decoder a bit better.
Seems to work; now to explore the possibilities to save and store reports and files.
Thanks for your advices,

Jan
ON3ZTT
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Old 10-01-2017, 08:42   #9
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

Quote:
Originally Posted by petter5 View Post
Then. head over to the opencpn forum OpenCPN - Cruisers & Sailing Forums and suggest improvements and clarifications and there is a big chanche that improvements will be done.
Yes, I plan to do just that. There are some other features that I may be able to help with.
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Old 10-01-2017, 12:29   #10
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

Update - I tried The OpenCPN WFAX plug-in again, and the auto-sync worked. I don't know what changed...
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Old 11-09-2017, 02:48   #11
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

does anybody know how far those transmissions reach? am trying to receive GER & Northwood here in austria- so far no reception (could be idiot me too...; radio new tecsaun PL880)
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Old 11-09-2017, 09:15   #12
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

Under excellent conditions you can hear these signals on the other side of the world. But this depends on the frequency (one of the reasons that these WFAX stations often broadcast on multiple frequencies), the receiver and transmitter locations, time of day, time of year, and solar flare / sunspot activity. With an unfavorable combination of these factors you may not be able to receive a signal from ten miles distance.

There are programs that will predict the signal propagation when you plug in all these factors. Look at "Airmail" for a free propagation tool, and there are others out there as well. Here is a good place to start reading about propagation: Propagation

And even if the propagation is favorable, you can still be unable to receive a signal because of locally-generated noise. There are many discussions about this here.
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Old 15-09-2017, 14:46   #13
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

Does anyone receive the USCG Sitor broadcasts. The times that I have listened on the appointed times and frequencies all I hear is the Morse WLO.
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Old 15-09-2017, 15:26   #14
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

I used SeaTTY. It works well for me, using the Signalink. It easily detects WFax, Navtex and HF Sitor broadcasts, which are my primary applications. I don't remember the Sitor broadcast times and I'm not on my boat.
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Old 15-09-2017, 15:33   #15
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Re: How to receive RTTY weather forecast on SSB

I use HF Fax on an Android phone. It works like a charm, the phone uses very little current. The idea of firing up a laptop to receive a weather fax seems wasteful to me. With the phone (or tablet) you can schedule the times of the particular broadcasts that you need and leave it on for hours without draining your batteries.
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