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Old 13-01-2013, 20:43   #1
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I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

I bought my boat 2 years ago, and it came with a I-Com 802 SSB radio and tunner already installed. I was told it was only a year old when I bought the boat.
Everything seems to work on it, however I don't know a thing about it, and I have rarely turned it on. I would like to know how to use it, and get everything fully functional, including myself. Right now I am not even sure if it is working properly.
Does anyone have sugestions as how to aquire the knowlage needed to operate it.
Also, I assume I need a licence to operate it. How do I get that?
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Old 13-01-2013, 21:12   #2
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

There are many people here with a lifetime of knowledge and they will help you. I have just learned what you're asking and I'll share what I learned. This is about all that I know.
You probably won't get much in a marina.
I called the USCG in San Francisco, Ca by phone and asked to speak to their HF radio department and a very nice lady gave us a radio check on two different frequencies. All was well. There is certainly an east coast equivalent.
You need a ship's station license and a marine operator's license. No tests are necessary and the two cost about $200.00. You can apply online at the FCC's website.
The Latitude 38 magazine has a beginner's guide to SSB that they publish every year right before the Baja Ha Ha. I think it's available online on the Lectronic Latitude.
Downwind Marine has a cruiser's guide that you can download that will help some too. Both of those magazines discuss Mexico cruiser's net frequencies that probably don't apply to you but the other info will. There are certainly Florida, Bahamas, and Caribbean cruiser's nets that you can tune in to but I'm over here, not there yet, so I haven't started gathering that info yet.
You don't need a license to listen, just to broadcast.
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Old 13-01-2013, 21:26   #3
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

This guy, Terry Sparks, literally wrote the book on the ICOM 802 and is VERY helpful if you can catch him on a HF net as well.

Icom IC - M802 Made Simple for Cruisers: Hand Book for Starting the Dream: T L Sparks CDR: 9781456545543: Amazon.com: Books
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Old 13-01-2013, 22:37   #4
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

Is it hooked up to an antenna and ground plane, currently?
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Old 14-01-2013, 05:02   #5
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

Thanks to everyone so far.
SWW914, thank you very much for the usefull information. Aussie, great advise on a book, I will order it.

Celestialsailor, I think it is all there and hooked up. I have of cource, turned it on a few times, It seems to power up, and change frequences, and while doing this on certain chanels I can hear voices, mostly in foreign language. I also hear what sounds like fax and computor modum sounds on certain channels. The tunner is monted under the rear back stay that is used for the antenna. The wire that connects to the antenna from the tunner was frayed and in poor shape so I ordered the same High Voltage wire it had and replaced it. As to the fine tunning aspect of this thing, I have no Idea.
I have a book called "An Idiots Guide to SSB" and I have made an attempt to get through it but I am not even sure if my radio is working correctly or not. In my mind, I need someone to walk me through the steps to test the radio, and see if it is working correctly then tell me what I need.
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Old 14-01-2013, 05:17   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocketman View Post
Thanks to everyone so far.
SWW914, thank you very much for the usefull information. Aussie, great advise on a book, I will order it.

Celestialsailor, I think it is all there and hooked up. I have of cource, turned it on a few times, It seems to power up, and change frequences, and while doing this on certain chanels I can hear voices, mostly in foreign language. I also hear what sounds like fax and computor modum sounds on certain channels. The tunner is monted under the rear back stay that is used for the antenna. The wire that connects to the antenna from the tunner was frayed and in poor shape so I ordered the same High Voltage wire it had and replaced it. As to the fine tunning aspect of this thing, I have no Idea.
I have a book called "An Idiots Guide to SSB" and I have made an attempt to get through it but I am not even sure if my radio is working correctly or not. In my mind, I need someone to walk me through the steps to test the radio, and see if it is working correctly then tell me what I need.
Captain Marti Brown give online tutoring. She has wrote a book also on how to use an SSB radio. See her website. Don't have the URL right at hand for now but you can google to find it. She is in Florida in Marathon.
Alec
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Old 14-01-2013, 08:03   #7
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aussie_Sequoia View Post
This guy, Terry Sparks, literally wrote the book on the ICOM 802 and is VERY helpful if you can catch him on a HF net as well.

Icom IC - M802 Made Simple for Cruisers: Hand Book for Starting the Dream: T L Sparks CDR: 9781456545543: Amazon.com: Books
I recently bought that book and it is very easy to follow the order and the logic behind a successful installation.

Helps that I've got a steel boat, however.
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Old 14-01-2013, 08:21   #8
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

You can learn a lot by just listening.

Dockside Radio in Punta Gorda just across the state from you on Florida's west coast has a wealth of useful information, including:

1. a list of net frequencies (http://docksideradio.com/Cruising%20Nets.htm);

2. how to program an Icom M-802 (http://docksideradio.com/icom_802_programming.htm); and

3. marine radio licensing: (One page FCC Marine/Aeronautical License Intro).

Gary can help you get your license(s) and with anything else you need.

Bill
WA6CCA
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Old 14-01-2013, 09:58   #9
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Captain Marti Brown give online tutoring. She has wrote a book also on how to use an SSB radio. See her website. Don't have the URL right at hand for now but you can google to find it. She is in Florida in Marathon.
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The website of Capt. Marti Brown is http://www.idiyachts.com
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Old 14-01-2013, 17:43   #10
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocketman View Post

Celestialsailor, I think it is all there and hooked up. I have of cource, turned it on a few times, It seems to power up, and change frequences, and while doing this on certain chanels I can hear voices, mostly in foreign language. I also hear what sounds like fax and computor modum sounds on certain channels. The tunner is monted under the rear back stay that is used for the antenna. The wire that connects to the antenna from the tunner was frayed and in poor shape so I ordered the same High Voltage wire it had and replaced it. As to the fine tunning aspect of this thing, I have no Idea.
I have a book called "An Idiots Guide to SSB" and I have made an attempt to get through it but I am not even sure if my radio is working correctly or not. In my mind, I need someone to walk me through the steps to test the radio, and see if it is working correctly then tell me what I need.

Ok...Sounds like everything might be there. Maybe time to download the manual off the net. Make sure the batteries are topped off. Grab a 6-pak on Saturday, turn off your cellphone and dig into it. If it is an automatic tuner (and it sounds like it is), it tunes up by keying the mike. However...this should be done on low power as to not overdrive the unit, possibly causing any damage. But read the manual first
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Old 14-01-2013, 18:04   #11
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

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Originally Posted by Celestialsailor View Post
Ok...Sounds like everything might be there. Maybe time to download the manual off the net. Make sure the batteries are topped off. Grab a 6-pak on Saturday, turn off your cellphone and dig into it. If it is an automatic tuner (and it sounds like it is), it tunes up by keying the mike. However...this should be done on low power as to not overdrive the unit, possibly causing any damage. But read the manual first
So far I am taking almost everyones advise. I have ordered the book mentioned, that is written by Terry Sparks, I have contacted the Dock side radio and left them a message, I am planning on letting them get the licences needed to opperate it, and maybe give me some instruction. I have the manuals that came with the unit. But they don't make a lot of sence. I am still not convinced that the radio is working properly.

Today I read through the book written by Captain Marti Brown, and I tried doing a radio check on a couple of freq that are mentioned in her book. I never got a responce. I am not sure if this is normal or not.

I called the original owner who had the unit profesionally installed, and he said it always worked great, but that was 3 years ago and as I know, everything that doesn't get used regularly sometimes develops glitchs. He did clue me in to a few things I may be able to do. But he himself said he didn't realy know that much about it. He had a few freq programed im that he listened to at certain times and that's about it.

If anyone out there knows a little more than me, (which isn't hard) could PM me, I would be happy to give you my phone number so maybe we could have a very short conversation to get me going.
I really don't think I will have trouble gitting it figered out once I have some success.
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Old 14-01-2013, 18:08   #12
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

Actually, get your license and registration first. Transmitting without them can get a hefty fine. More likely, a CG boarding will not be happy with the lack of paperwork.

The station license is the same one you will need for the VHF when operating outside the US. It also applies to beacons and radar - anything that emits RF signals. When you apply check the boxes for everything you think you will ever install, because adding things later will cost more money. No problem if you are authorized for things you don't have.

The operator's license is just a little paperwork - no exam, course, or knowledge needed. It is good for a lifetime. It is also theoretically needed for VHF in other jurisdictions as well.

Your best bet is to ask around and find someone who is experienced with the M802 - then bribe them with beer to spend the time to show you the ropes. I am a big fan of reading books, but this really will come easier by demonstration.

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Old 14-01-2013, 18:08   #13
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Re: I Have A SSB 802 AND NO Idea How To Use It.

Here you go. I downloaded it for you...enjoy...
http://www.usna.edu/Sailing/document...SB%20Radio.pdf
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