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Old 30-08-2013, 23:14   #16
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

Take a breath, let it roll off the back, go play, your on a beautiful boat cruising the south pacific.

I'm new to the HAM stuff, so most of this is still Chinese but your posts did help clarify some stuff, thanks.
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Old 31-08-2013, 01:29   #17
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

Quote:
Originally Posted by svmariane View Post
Nice tap dance you did there.



No, you quoted me, my entire post, and not the OP. A reasonable person would think that you were responding to me.



Da yada da yada. I asked a simple question: What emergency HF frequencies ARE monitored 24/7? Other folk provided some answers.



Again: Da yada da yada. I asked a simple question: What emergency HF frequencies ARE monitored 24/7? Note that I didn't specify Marine SSB nor HAM bands nor asked about the requirements for ships at sea - Just said HF. Didn't ask about GMDSS - and don't know why I'm getting a lecture on it - just if anyone was listening and IF so, on what freqs.

As I said: nice tap dance. I accept that you've the right to state your opinion, BUT as a moderator who can delete posts should folk not abide with the "be nice" rules I think you overstepped. It was condescending, actually. Who polices the policemen?

Recently I made a purchase from a CF sponsoring vendor, Floating Impressions. I got what I needed; they made a sale. Never would have contacted them except for having a bit of trust in CF. I mention that because I'm not sure why I would remain on CF if a MODERATOR attacks my posts that merely seek knowledge.

You were wrong in your original answer, as was pointed out by others.
You were wrong in the manner in which way you - a moderator - responded to me.
And your apology is defensive while reeking of self-righteousness.
Methinks SV Mariana is joking -- yanking our chains, pretending to be spoiling for a fight.

On the off chance that he was not joking and really was offended, I will say once more for the record: No offense was intended and no one attacked anyone. If anything was poorly expressed by myself so as to be capable of being interpreted that way, then, once again, I retract and apologize for it.


As to my wrong statement about which frequencies are monitored -- mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. One should know what one is talking about, before cluttering up the forum with one's opinions and advice, and in this case, I failed to do that. Thanks again to Dot Dun and Bill Trayfors for setting the facts straight, as they always do, on matter concerning radio. It's great to have such real authorities on here to help out us amateurs when we say something stupid, as I did.
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Old 31-08-2013, 11:09   #18
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

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Originally Posted by svmariane View Post
So... What emergency HF frequencies ARE monitored 24/7? Be it USCG or some other group/entity.

Thinking someone here would have a quick answer and/or reference. If not, then it's research time for me, I guess. Just asking for those of us out here with older SSB radios without DSC capabilities - like my ICOM M-700.
James, you asked a very good question. I tried responding yesterday evening on my mobile cruisers forum app, but the response wouldn't post and got lost. So I'll try again.

USCG was concerned about HF voice watches because it and the FCC requires many ships carry SSB w/o DSC so they can call in a distress. There are many radios still in use, and although FCC has required all HF marine radios certified after June 1999 to have DSC, you can continue to sell let alone use a radio w/o DSC indefinitely if you can point to a certification prior to that date.

IMO maintains a list of HF DSC stations and freqs guarded worldwide updated yearly, but that list does not include voice freqs guarded. WLO Mobile AL still guards 2182 kHz as does New Zealand, but wasn't able to confirm who else does so. USCG does a credible job of guarding 4125 kHz in the Bering Sea. The best HF watches may be by various amateur radio marine nets, such as Marine and amateur radio net details, times and frequencies on SSB, Ham, HF and VHF for cruising yachts.

The USCG keeps watch on four of the GMDSS HF voice freqs, but am not sure who else does. The GMDSS voice freqs were never intended for watch keeping.

With all the HF radios w/o DSC being carried, an accurate listing of HF voice freqs being watched would be valuable to have. I don't know that one exists.

--joehersey, USCG retired
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Old 01-09-2013, 07:09   #19
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

There is a tendency to believe that because of the introduction of HF/DSC and the cessation of some countries to monitor HF voice communications that HF/SSB radio aboard is useless unless you have HF/DSC.

NOTHING COULD BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH!


All mariners venturing on the worlds oceans should be aware of the fact that:

THERE ARE TONS OF HF VOICE STATIONS STILL ACTIVE -- DSC HAS NOT CHANGED MOST OF THIS.

There are, e.g.,

-- amateur radio HF/SSB nets (a good listing can be found on http://docksideradio.com/Cruising%20Nets.htm); also SEA net covering SE Asia, the UK Maritime Mobile Net, and many others;

-- marine HF/SSB nets (lists also can be found on same site);

-- marine coast stations providing HF voice services (e.g., WLO and KLO in the U.S., Bermuda Harbor Radio, Brunei Bay Radio in SE Asia);

-- the Coast Guard in the U.S., New Zealand, and elsewhere.

There are also many military and civilian HF voice nets and monitoring stations which could be useful in an extreme emergency, including:

-- aero emergency frequencies
-- aero enroute frequencies worldwide
-- USAF frequencies
-- USN frequencies

A description of some of these can be found on this site: Military Comms Monitoring. HF VHF UHF

BOTTOM LINE: DON'T THROW OUT YOUR OLDER SSB JUST YET. IT'S STILL A VERY VALUABLE TOOL FOR ALL SORTS OF COMMUNICATIONS, INCLUDING EMERGENCY COMMUNICATIONS WORLDWIDE.

Bill
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Old 01-09-2013, 07:19   #20
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

are we talking about Ham HF or Marine HF ?

while I can understand ending the listening watch, I am very surprised that they are ending guarding DSC MF. The bulletin seems to indicate they are discontinuing activity on MF. This seems strange as the ITU/GMDSS has not depreciated MF.

Very few CG HF station now active worldwide , Only one in Europe ( Lynby)

Dave
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Old 01-09-2013, 08:47   #21
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
are we talking about Ham HF or Marine HF ?

while I can understand ending the listening watch, I am very surprised that they are ending guarding DSC MF. The bulletin seems to indicate they are discontinuing activity on MF. This seems strange as the ITU/GMDSS has not depreciated MF.

Very few CG HF station now active worldwide , Only one in Europe ( Lynby)

Dave
Dave,

Clearly, now, we're talking about BOTH, i.e., the availability of stations on both marine and amateur HF/SSB.

The reason for the USCG termination of all MF services isn't crystal clear, but a strong clue can be discerned in their mention of the "high costs" of maintaining antennas, etc. This points to a budget reason and, as I stated earlier, I believe this figured into the MF termination decision.

I agree with you that their failure to watch even the GMDSS MF frequencies is shortsighted.

Bill
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Old 01-09-2013, 08:59   #22
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

Quote:
I agree with you that their failure to watch even the GMDSS MF frequencies is shortsighted.
I dont even understand how they are getting away with it, under their GMDSS commitments, to my mind MF support isn't optional ! maybe there are saying they support it but "unfortunately" have no stations capable of handling it !!!


I mean the near offshore around the US is presumably designated A2, hence MF is all that is required for compulsory fit. ( and a lot of MF sets dont do HF) . what is a user who only has MF ( in compliance ) supposed to do. Seems very strange

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Old 01-09-2013, 10:48   #23
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MF is the official 1st option for sea area A2, so for all just beyond VHF. This means that only Inmarsat C is left, unless you manage 50nm+ VHF communications. This is very well possible, we have done a 100nm radio check with the USCG once. May be more people will be buying new coax and antennas now

... or they just call with their satphone...
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Old 01-09-2013, 11:42   #24
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

Quote:
Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
....

while I can understand ending the listening watch, I am very surprised that they are ending guarding DSC MF. The bulletin seems to indicate they are discontinuing activity on MF. This seems strange as the ITU/GMDSS has not depreciated MF.

...

Dave
No surprise. The USCG shut down MF DSC because it rode on the same infrastructure as the 2182 kHz system. That infrastructure was broken. Most of the coastal 2MHz system had deteriorated to the point where continuation, let alone restoration, was just too costly. What's regrettable is that many of the Sectors responsible for maintaining watch on 2182 and 2187.5 kHz DSC were arguably more pretending to keep watch than actually doing so, using antennas with broken ground planes and receivers with squelch turned up and volume turned down. The Coast Guard understandably decided to shut it down rather than continue giving mariners the impression that it was actually providing a reliable watchkeeping service on these frequencies.

There was really little immediate savings though in shutting down the service since the Coast Guard never had dedicated watch standers on 2 MHz, at least not since the 60/70s when VHF was first installed. Those responsible for guarding 2 MHz for distress calls, which were few, were also responsible for guarding several VHF ch16 sites, now with VHF DSC, and handling the numerous distress calls received over VHF and by telephone and other means, as well as for making safety broadcasts and handling many other tasks too.

Sequestration is putting a lot of pressure on the Coast Guard's continuation of other radio services too, even those on well maintained infrastructure, such as broadcasts of weather information on HF and on NAVTEX, transmitting differential GPS corrections, etc. Unless there is strong public support for these services, they may soon disappear. The decision to shut down 2 MHz voice and DSC was regrettably a no brainer because its supporting infrastructure had collapsed.
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Old 01-09-2013, 14:41   #25
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

Quote:
The decision to shut down 2 MHz voice and DSC was regrettably a no brainer because its supporting infrastructure had collapsed.
yes but how are they sidestepping their responsibilities under gmdss
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Old 01-09-2013, 16:01   #26
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

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yes but how are they sidestepping their responsibilities under gmdss
dave
While it's lamentable that the USCG has abandoned watchkeeping on 2mHz channels -- voice and DSC -- in reality it's probably not really problematic for ships in distress. The primary loss is that the automatic alarm on 2182 which many/most marine HF/SSB sets have is now pretty useless. But, there are several other effective options for HF distress communications, both voice and DSC.

In terms of HF propagation, geography is very important. The U.S. is a big place. The USCG still maintains a listening watch on other HF frequency bands in diverse locations, including Boston, Norfolk, Miami, New Orleans, San Francisco, Hawaii, Kodiak AK, Guam, etc. See their watch keeping schedule here: HF Distress and Safety Watchkeeping Schedule

HF/DSC emergency calls are broadcast on several HF frequency bands, not just on 2mHz.

It is therefore highly likely....nearly 100% certain....that any distress call on 4mHz or 6mHz frequencies which might otherwise have been made on 2mHz frequencies would still be heard by one or more of these stations. Put another way, 4mHz voice and DSC transmissions in lieu of such transmissions on 2mHz would almost certainly be copied by one or another USCG station.

As to GMDSS responsibility, the USCG has not "declared an A2 operating area" under GMDSS and, therefore, is technically not in default. At least that's how I read their explanations.

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Old 01-09-2013, 16:06   #27
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

Quote:
As to GMDSS responsibility, the USCG has not "declared an A2 operating area" under GMDSS and, therefore, is technically not in default. At least that's how I read their explanations.

ah i see , a nice sleight of hand

wiki says this

"Presently, until an A1 or A2 Sea Area is established, GMDSS-mandated ships operating off the U.S. coast must fit to Sea Areas A3 (or A4) regardless of where they operate. U.S. ships whose voyage allows them to always remain within VHF channel 16 coverage of U.S. Coast Guard stations may apply to the Federal Communications Commission for an individual waiver to fit to Sea Area A1 requirements. Similarly, those who remain within 2182 kHz coverage of U.S. Coast Guard stations may apply for a waiver to fit to Sea Area A2 requirements."

interesting sidestep. I gather under rescue 21 a formal sea area A1 is currently in the process of being declared

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Old 01-09-2013, 17:36   #28
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Man, I did not know the USCG was -that- far behind the rest of the world. We're talking decades, literally!
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Old 01-09-2013, 21:18   #29
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

Joe-
"Does anyone still keep watch on "
Did you want the authoritative answer from the ten thousand individual radio owners who might still be keeping watch? Or just from the national authorities of the 160 or so nations that are part of the UN and might have agencies providing SAR of some kind?

As I recall the USCG stood down as part of an ITU decision to shut down 2182 and that's real old news by now. If you've got the button, by all means us it if you need it. But I wouldn't hold my breath for anyone to respond.
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Old 02-09-2013, 03:28   #30
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Re: Impact of USCG termination of 2 MHz distress watch keeping on HF marine radio def

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Man, I did not know the USCG was -that- far behind the rest of the world. We're talking decades, literally!
yes shocking late implementation of GMDSS, over 20 years behind the RoW.

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