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Old 21-05-2017, 06:10   #1
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New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

Hello all,

I leave in 16 days for a 3 to 5 year voyage and I just discovered this M802 issue that needs fixing. With such a short window I intend to get professional help asap but will start here for advice and ideas as a starting point.

I installed a new M802 in my boat over the winter. I got great advice reading many CF threads, and asking a few questions here. My boat already had an SSB radio that had failed I don't know how long ago, so I already had all the hard bits done - backstay antenna, counterpoise, hull ground plate, etc. Everything else is new (equipment, all wire/cable runs, etc). I also cleaned every visible old connector on the counterpoise, ground, antenna, etc. It all seems as good as new.

Here's the issue. I receive transmissions like weather just fine (as far as I can tell). Last night under clear skies I ran my first tests for transmitting. I did the recommended test calls to various stations (USCG near and far, WLO) and never received any acks. Then I tried voice radio checks on each hailing channel - no response. Then I tried WLO directly and several of their channels and no response. This makes me think I'm just I'm not getting a signal out.

When I either send a test message or key the mic and start talking the radio definitely bumps up the amp meter on my electric panel and electronic things on the boat twinge a little. This reaction in the boat is different at different frequencies. It's trying to transmit.

Frustrated and hungry and went into the pub at my marina, sat at the bar with a bunch of other people who had clearly been working on their boats all day and simply announced I had an SSB radio problem and did anyone there have experience. One delightful old salt spoke up and we had a great discussion. His experience/instinct was that I probably had a problem with my backstay antenna and that the insulators probably have failed (they could be as much as 30 ears old) and my transmission signals were jumping to ground and not going anywhere. Sounds plausible, but I never would have thought a perfectly passive device like an insulator could fail. He gave me tips on how to use a wattmeter and look for the problem but unfortunately I don't have time for that (normally I'd love fussing and learning more about all this).

So I'm stumped, and the failed insulators is so far my only idea. That's no small thing to change of course, nor cheap.

My questions:
1 - others ideas?
2 - other tests to learn more?
3 - great SSB radio service person in Rhode Island?

Thanks,

JR
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Old 21-05-2017, 06:28   #2
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

Put a SWR meter on your antenna. That should tell you if anything is going out. Transmitter or antenna. Test together then separate. You will find it. No rush. You have the rest of your life to deal with stuff like this. Check the transmitter first then if you have to return for replacement you may make your sailing date.
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Old 21-05-2017, 06:36   #3
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

If you think it's the insulators -- simply hoist 30'-40' of wire on a halyard and connect to the tuner. Then try your transmission tests again. That would confirm whether the backstay "antenna" is the problem. Good luck!
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Old 21-05-2017, 08:02   #4
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

AnsleyS - thanks. I've looked at SWR meters and see an overwhelming choice, but think I understand what's needed for SSB. I don't understand your advice to "Test together then separate," as it seems there is only one place to hook up the meter - between the transceiver box and the tuner box - and it all gets tested as a unit.

Capt.Don - I was wondering is something as simple as that might work. Thanks for confirming. Worth a try.
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Old 21-05-2017, 08:28   #5
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

If the amps go up on the radio, chances are that your radio is working.
How much do the amps go up? Do the amps suggest full power or is the radio maybe in the low power mode? Have you verified with the meter in the radio that you are putting out close to full power? What kind of tuner is installed - is it automatic (you should hear a bunch of clicking if you initiate a tuning from the radio) or do you need to do anything to tune it ? Is it tuned to the frequency you are operating on?
Just because you receive no reply is not a good indicator that you are not transmitting - there are many factors that are at play here besides the radio and it's install.

If you feel that you are not transmitting properly at this point, the SWR meter and a dummy load are the logical next steps.The dummy load will act as a perfect antenna substitute and the SWR meter will tell you how much power you are outputting from the radio. Insert between radio and tuner and verify the output of the radio. Remove dummy load, re-attach tuner and see what power output and SWR are now.

If everything is ok to this point I would improvise the dummy load to be able to hook it to the tuner output and try one last power output test (BTW, you can/should try all the tests in low power mode). This will clearly tell you if the problem is in the tuner or the antenna system.
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Old 21-05-2017, 08:42   #6
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

JR,
First off, with respect to the "old salt", even if you didn't have any insulators at all, you'd still be able to transmit a signal and make contacts (there is a big difference between "ground" at DC and one at RF)...so, don't worry about your insulators!!

Secondly, when you write that you "don't have the time for that", I'm left wondering then what do you want to do??
If you want this all to work, it will take some time...
Probably a few hours, but maybe less...
It all depends on you and how much effort you're willing to put forth...

{To be clear, I will help you out....no worries about that...
But, please understand something....
Do you have the time / did you have the time, to learn to:
Plot your position, chart a course, sail, anchor, navigate, flush your head, clean the sea water strainer, trim the sails, use GPS, use a radar, etc. etc....or how about use a computer, or tablet, or smartphone???
These are all things most sailors these days had to learn...
If heading out on a 3 to 5 year voyage (I assume a circumnav?) I recommend that you take an hour or two out of your weekend to learn about HF radio comms and how-to both use the radio and troubleshoot some basic problems?}


Also, most of the info you need (and answers to most of your questions) is in the sticky at the top of the Marine Electronics page...

Marine SSB Stuff (how-to better use / proeprly-install SSB, & troubleshoot RFI, etc.)



FYI, you'll see that while having a "wattmeter" (power/SWR meter) is great (and I always recommend having an external one), the M-802 does have one built-in....it displays about 15 to 20 watts per segment...

You can spend money on stuff (wattmeter, dummy load, etc.) spend time stringing up another wire, etc....of you can spend less time (and no money) reading the below and all referenced info, watch the videos, etc....but most importantly answer the questions and clarify how you are using the radio (what channel/freq at what time-of-day, etc.) and how the radio is wired, etc...


I assume you're not a ham operator??
If you were, I'd say tune in to 14.300mhz USB any afternoon....or try 7.268mhz, every morning at 0745am ET...
You will always find someone that will hear you!!


If I get more details and info from you, I can give more details later, but my initial reaction of the most likely causes are:

a) improper channel/freq for time of day and length of communications path...(requires understanding of radiowave propagation)
Please have a look at the Sticky...and some videos...
Marine SSB Stuff (how-to better use / proeprly-install SSB, & troubleshoot RFI, etc.)

HF Radio Freqs, summertime Atlantic crossing, offshore Net..

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...ZDo_Jk3NB_Bt1y



b) improper channel/freq itself, meaning maybe nobody is monitoring that channel/freq at that time... (check the actual watchstanding schedules and freqs)
Please read the schedules and understand the "proper channel choice" from above...
https://www.navcen.uscg.gov/?pageName=cgcommsCall
HF SSB Radiotelephone, Telex and Email Frequencies and Channels
East Coast Cruising Nets


c) improper 12vdc wiring of the M-802....it should be wired directly to the main house bank (or bus bar).....(your comment of " the radio definitely bumps up the amp meter on my electric panel and electronic things on the boat twinge a little." is very telling here...as this indicates the radio is wired thru your electrical panel??? and you shouldn't be getting any "twinges" on anything!!)
Please read the Sticky and the Sailmail Primer..


d) You have an older version of the M-802 (even if "new", it could be "New Old Stock" / NOS) which hasn't had the factory "clipping mod" done!!
This severely limits your radio's output power...
Icom M-802 "Clipping Issue" - Revisited....


e) You haven't got your M-802's internal DSP-based speech compressor turned on....which reduces the radio's average output (less "talk-power" on voice communications)
IC-M802 Compression




f) Although unlikely, you may have a faulty M-802 and/or AT-140??? Or simply a wire that isn't connected correctly...
Obviously the radio is going into transmit mode, and obviously it is transmitting something...
We just need to verify what it is transmitting (having another boat nearby can be of GREAT help here) and how much it is transmitting (see the simple tests here)...as well as do you know how to get your signal out to where it needs to go (radiowave propagation)

None of us are there on your boat with you, so it is up to you to check all of this out...
(yes, a wattmeter is a good addition, but you CAN troubleshoot this without one!!!)

Do these tests on every different band (4mhz, 6mhz, 8mhz, 12mhz, 16mhz, 18mhz, 22mhz, 25mhz...and on the 3.9mhz, 7.2mhz, and 14.3mhz ham bands as well....)
--- When attempting to transmit, is your At-140 tuning?? Does the M-802 show "TUNE" on the display??
--- When keying the mic in FSK mode, how many segments of the power meter (on the M-802's display) illuminate?? (should be all 8 segments)


--- The same when talking in a clear, normal speaking voice (not a whisper, but not a shout), with the mic about 1" away from your mouth??? (should be at least 4 - 5 segments flashing on normal speech, as much as all 8 segments on voice peaks....if it is only 1 to 3 segments, and never all 8, then your speech compressor is most likely Off....if you get some segments illuminating but only sometimes, and/or barely get 1 to 2 segments illuminated, then it is likely you have an older veruosn of the M-802 which has not had the "clipping mod" done (Icom does it for free, and takes only a couple days turn around, usually)

--- Also, if you feel confident to do this without shorting anything out...slip some test probes from a voltmeter into the 12vdc power plug (next to the wires) that plugs into the back of the M-802....plug it in to the radio....turn radio on...
Read the voltage while receiving....it should be the same as your battery voltage...
Then transmit in FSK mode (press the mic PTT button, when radio is in FSK mode), and read the voltage now....it should be above 12vdc....



Please have a look at these videos...

Icom M-802 Instruction Videos
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...rC-8QKVyMb4tVr


And, also these...

Maritime HF comms
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...ZDo_Jk3NB_Bt1y


HF-DSC
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...ga2zYuPozhUXZX



Some specifics....
Quote:
Originally Posted by jr_spyder View Post
Here's the issue. I receive transmissions like weather just fine (as far as I can tell).
That's good....
But, we have no idea what you're receiving, what frequency / what channel / what station / what time of day, etc. etc.???

Last night under clear skies I ran my first tests for transmitting. I did the recommended test calls to various stations (USCG near and far, WLO) and never received any acks.
SSB Voice calls???
--- Remember that the USCG does NOT monitor their working channels (the ones that transmit the weather)!!!!
And, that their Atlantic Ocean (East coast US) Voice SSB watchkeeping chennels depend on time-of-day!!!!
https://www.navcen.uscg.gov/?pageName=cgcommsCall

--- If you're hearing WLO's station ID and traffic list at the top of the hour (or their weather broadcasts) loud and clear, on some particular channel....then they should hear you fine!!

If you're attempting DSC calls....
--- Remember that (due to funding cuts) the USCG only has automated DSC test call responses from NMN and NMC, and only on 4mhz!!
So, unless you're really close to them (you are not), this would only allow you to test this at night....
https://www.navcen.uscg.gov/?pageName=cgcommsCall
"DSC test calls on 4207.5 KHz will be automatically acknowledged from Portsmouth/NMN and Pt Reyes/NMC. Responses to test calls on other frequencies and at the other locations may be delayed and cannot be assured."

--- And, WLO only monitors 8mhz and 12mhz DSC....
"ShipCom can provide automated radio TX acknowledgements via your DSC equipment on frequencies 8414.5 and 12577.0. WLO's MMSI is 003660003. Send a "Safety Test" and you will get an automatic acknowledgement."


Then I tried voice radio checks on each hailing channel - no response.
What "hailing channels"???
(2182, 4125, 6215, 8291, 12290, and 16420, I assume???)
Nobody (except USCG, Aus Maritime Authority, and NZ maritime Authority) has maintained any Voice SSB Radio Watch on any of the "hailing channels" in more than 15 years....and even the ones that still do maintain some Voice radio watch, don't monitor all of those freqs 24/7...

And, if you tried some of the cruising nets, remember that they are usually only active during those net times, plus or minus a few minutes...


Then I tried WLO directly and several of their channels and no response. This makes me think I'm just I'm not getting a signal out.
Yes, certainly possible...
But, did you hear WLO on those channels, before you called them??? If not, you may have been using the wrong channel for that time of day...


When I either send a test message or key the mic and start talking the radio definitely bumps up the amp meter on my electric panel and electronic things on the boat twinge a little. This reaction in the boat is different at different frequencies. It's trying to transmit.
This is NOT good....
And, this is usually an indication that the radio is powered thru the electrical panel (not good at all), and that you have serious transmit RFI on-board (also not good, but you can live with that)


Frustrated and hungry and went into the pub at my marina, sat at the bar with a bunch of other people who had clearly been working on their boats all day and simply announced I had an SSB radio problem and did anyone there have experience. One delightful old salt spoke up and we had a great discussion. His experience/instinct was that I probably had a problem with my backstay antenna and that the insulators probably have failed (they could be as much as 30 ears old) and my transmission signals were jumping to ground and not going anywhere.
While it's possible for an insulator to crack, it's more rare than hitting the lotto!! And, even if it was cracked/shorted, you would still be able to transmit and make contacts!! (heck, I've made contacts using a grounded metal window frame as an antenna!)
Sounds plausible,but I never would have thought a perfectly passive device like an insulator could fail.


He gave me tips on how to use a wattmeter and look for the problem but unfortunately I don't have time for that (normally I'd love fussing and learning more about all this).
Whao there JR...
Do you have the time / did you have the time, to learn to:
Plot your position, chart a course, sail, anchor, navigate, flush your head, clean the sea water strainer, trim the sails, use GPS, use a radar, etc. etc....or how about use a computer, or tablet, or smartphone???
These are all things most sailors these days had to learn...
Is there some reason a sailor heading of on a 3 to 5 year voyage (I assume a circumnav?) cannot take an hour or two out of their weekend to learn about HF radio comms and how-to both use the radio and troubleshoot some basic problems???


So I'm stumped, and the failed insulators is so far my only idea. That's no small thing to change of course, nor cheap.
Forget worrying about the insulators, at least until you've addressed all of the more likely causes (see "a" thru "f", above)


My questions:
1 - others ideas?
2 - other tests to learn more?
Please read ALL ABOVE, please read ALL the referenced stickys and threads, and please watch the videos...

3 - great SSB radio service person in Rhode Island?
I'm certain there is someone, but I have no idea who...
Except yourself, of course....
Take a couple hours, read all the above, and look at what you've got...and I suspect that (with our help) you'll have it figured out in short order...

Thanks,

JR
Read all above, clarify how the radio is wired / installed and do the tests I recommended....and report back...

Hope this helps...

John


P.S. If time is of extreme importance, I will offer some assistance on the phone and on-the-air...send me a PM with your phone #, and we should be able to coordinate a convenient time to call and troubleshoot all of this...
BTW, if it were my radio, and I didn't know what was wrong, I'd be on the phone to the guy that sold it to me in a heartbeat!! (have you done that??)
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Old 21-05-2017, 10:23   #7
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

Hi John,

As always thanks for jumping in here and providing great guidance. I'm not on the boat today so can't get right on these suggestions. Here's some quick responses:

- Time - definitely willing/wanting to put in the time to learn to use the radio (that's what I was doing last night), just short of time to troubleshot/fix the radio thinking there might be a bigger problem. You've given plenty of tips to try that indicate it might be a configuration issue. I will check all that tomorrow. I bought the radio last fall from Defender who I expect turnover fresh supply, but you never know.

- I'm not a HAM so this is pretty new to me. Over the winter I've been through all your videos (thank you!) and a couple books/guides. I certainly don't remember every detail and will continue to review until I've got it. So I know enough to be dangerous, as they say, but haven't put in practice. The idea of time of day and propagation is burned in, but I still need the actual experience. I'm a Navy veteran from way back and benefited using the MARS network of ham stations to call home from sea back then. So I have some feel for how it should work.

- Testing - yes, I was using the DSC test mode. In fact I was running your video on my laptop and pausing it to set the radio up as instructed and run the DSC tests. This was mostly with the WLO MMSI and frequencies, and two I found for USCG (with little hope, knowing the caveat of what they"listen" to, too far away). You can be sure, since I wasn't receiving acks on an expected WLO frequency (1212), I tried them all patiently and carefully. No joy.

- Receiving - over the last few weeks I've tuned in various weather forecasts on various channels at various times of day. I'd find them on a schedule, tune in, and there they were. Even got one from Seattle one day. That said I've never succeeded at getting BBC or other news broadcasts. Didn't try too hard as it wasn't important. I've also never heard other traffic on 1212 just leaving it on. So that makes me suspicious. When I surf around channels I do pick up some random chatter, but usually not clearly.

- Voice - again since WLO didn't respond on 1212 I tried them all, even knowing the lower frequencies probably didn't stand a chance anyway.

- Power - you're right. I need a direct power line to the battery bank and can do that this week.

- Tuning/output - the screen pretty much always says "TUNE", have never seen SWR. For voice the small power bars don't seem to go up much, maybe halfway, certainly never to all 8 even tough I'm using the right radio voice (by Navy specs). I did notice when doing the DSC automatic testing that the bars went to full 8. It was at this same moment other on board electronics would get excited. Can't tell you exactly what was chirping or reacting as it was very brief and I was alone and watching the radio.

- Don't know - I might not be in hi power mode, clipping mode, compression mode, didn't do any FSK transmitting/observing. Good ideas here to follow and learn, and maybe turn all of of this into a non-problem due to operator error.

More later as I can get to it, and maybe a call with you John if I continue to fail to transmit. Thanks for that offer!

JR
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Old 21-05-2017, 13:12   #8
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

Hi,
Are you in a marina with boats in the slips on both sides of you? It is very tough to test an SSB radio in a marina especially in the digital modes. There is lots of local noise and the nearby masts are very bad for getting out. I would take a trip and anchor out and do some testing there. I would also recommend using frequencies 4MHz and up as your antenna won't be as effective below that.

Cheers, Eric
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Old 21-05-2017, 17:05   #9
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

JR,
I'm sorry you're not on-board today, as it would very convenient for me...
Hope you get it all worked out, and fyi I will be away from the boat for a few days starting Thr or Fri...so hopefully I can be of help here on-line...

FYI, as I wrote above it's unlikely that your M-802/AT-140 have any problems at all...(and with your additional info now, it's VERY unlikely!)
Probably:
--- a lack of HF comms experience
--- weak "SSB Talk Power" due to your M-802's speech compressor being turned Off
--- improper 12vdc wiring of radio
--- RFI
It's doubtful that you will need to spend more than $200 on this, a few hours of your time and maybe a couple days waiting for your radio to be shipped back to you...

I could just leave it at that....but that wouldn't actually teach anyone anything...
SO....

This is for everyone's benefit!!
Learn to use the radio on VOICE COMMUNICATIONS FIRST!!
Our ears / brains are analog, and we talk/hear in verbal language, use that to communicate on the radio, do NOT try to use a PACTOR modem, nor send/rec DSC calls, without first understanding how the radio works / how HF radiowaves propagate, etc...and this is much easier when using simple Voice Communications....it is the way most of us learn, use voice communications, learn SSB Voice Comms first....
Then, and only then, try other modes of communications that you desire!!
(yes, this might sound counter-intuitive in light of the basic premise of using HF-DSC Comms, that untrained persons can send a DSC distress message....but this advice is not targeted to trained professional mariners, but rather to my fellow sailors, most of whom (at least my fellow US-citizen sailors) have never taken a marine radio class, nor have GMDSS training!!



1) If you got the radio from Defender, it probably (almost certainly) does not have the DSP-based Speech Compressor turned On...
Further your words: "the screen pretty much always says "TUNE", have never seen SWR ", and "For voice the small power bars don't seem to go up much, maybe halfway, certainly never to all 8 even tough I'm using the right radio voice " and "I did notice when doing the DSC automatic testing that the bars went to full 8", are all very telling, as this most certainly means the radio is putting out its maximum power in FSK (DSC is FSK), so the AT-140 is also working and providing a good antenna match (good SWR), but that your "average SSB Voice power" is low...
You see, you did not need to buy anything, just learn to use what you've already got!!
So, we can assume that the internal DSP-based Speech Compressor needs to be turned on...

Have a look at some of my videos that actually show the M-802's display while I'm talking/transmitting, and you'll see what the radio's transmit power meter should look like...
Such as in this video, from 1m 50sec to 3m 10sec, you'll see what the power output looks like on the M-802's display (with the speech compressor turned On)...If your radio is only showing half of these segments illuminated, then you need to get the speech compressor turned On...



My best advice is to immediately call Gary Jensen at Dockside Radio, and ask him how much he will charge you to turn it On (I think it's $75) and how long it would take him (my guess he'd do it right away), and/or if he knows anyone local to you that would do it...(it's an easy click with software that any Icom Marine Dealer should have)

http://www.docksideradio.com/





2) Also, since we now have your approximate transmit power readings and that you're hearing well (WLO and USCG, at least), we can assume that your radio is working okay, your antenna and antenna tuner are also working well...
You probably just are not too familiar with HF radio, and how it all works...
And, since you're not a ham operator, you have limited resources...
SO...

So, okay, you're in Rhode Island....and you're on the boat at night...so off the top of my head, here are some test ideas...

{but, FYI....please take note that the IMO in their GMDSS recommendations, have for 2 decades now been recommending that crew USE their radios regularly, both HF-DSC and HF-SSB Voice, so that they are familiar enough with them, to both know what to do when a Distress situation occurs AND to quickly/easily recognize any radio problems....and these are recommendations for professional mariners who should know all of this....so, my recommendations for my fellow sailors are even more strident...use the radio! The more you use it, the better you will get at it!}

For SSB Voice comm testing:
--- WLO should be good on 12mhz (ch. 1212) up to about 9pm/10pm your local time, and 8mhz (ch 824) from sunset and throughout the night....(fyi, during afternoon/up until sunset, you should be able to work them on 16mhz (ch. 1641) as well...)

--- NMN (USCG in S. Virginia)...being about 1/3 the distance from you than WLO, you should be able to raise NMN (on SSB Voice) on one or two bands lower....8mhz (8291.0khz) during the day, and up to about 8pm to 10pm...and 6mhz (6215.0khz) from late afternoon thru evening....and 4mhz (4125.0khz) after sunset....(but be aware of high noise levels this time of year on the lower freq bands....so comms on 4mhz isn't always easy...

--- Cruiseheimer's Net (830am ET) and Doo Dah Net (5pm ET), both on 8.152mhz....they use one of the shared auxiliary, fixed/land-mobile / marine frequencies, or 8152.0khz USB...
Although this time of year, most are still down south, they are heading north....and you should find Dick on s/v St. Jude, in North Carolina (about 450miles), to be a good contact..

--- Or, spend a couple evenings studying and get your ham license!!


For DSC calls:
--- Since you're on-board at night, try WLO on both 12577.0 and 8414.5....as you get later, 12mhz will not be usable...
--- For testing with USCG....you're hampered by the them only responding to test calls on 4207.5...so, try 'em between 10pm and midnight...and as long as noise levels are low, you should be good...




3) Some brief specifics...
Quote:
Originally Posted by jr_spyder View Post
- Receiving - over the last few weeks I've tuned in various weather forecasts on various channels at various times of day. I'd find them on a schedule, tune in, and there they were. Even got one from Seattle one day.
This is all good news....and successfully proves my point that the myth that you "cannot use SSB radio in a marina / at a dock", is bunk!!
(I do this all the time!!....heck, I was tied to the dock, with two 65' - 85' motoryachts tied up with battery chargers, air cond, refrig, etc. running, when making the videos....and have worked transatlantic comms on 12.359mhz, talked with Herb in Canada, from a packed marina in Gibraltar, during some truly horrible propagation!!)

That said I've never succeeded at getting BBC or other news broadcasts.
Don't worry about this...it's a crap shoot...
But, if you're interested, have a look at this thread..
BBC (and other) Shortwave Braodcasts, still on-the-air (and stong in Florida!)
Didn't try too hard as it wasn't important.



I've also never heard other traffic on 1212 just leaving it on. So that makes me suspicious.
Except for their hourly ID and traffic lists, they transmit weather half dozen times a day, but that's usually it....
Shipcom's Voice traffic is VERY minimal...which is a shame, as it's there 24/7, and easily usable for up to 5000 miles from Mobile and/or Seattle, all for phone calls at $0.99/min!!
HF SSB Radiotelephone, Telex and Email Frequencies and Channels


When I surf around channels I do pick up some random chatter, but usually not clearly.
???
All depends on what freqs/channels, and what time of day...
Try my suggestions above...


- Voice - again since WLO didn't respond on 1212 I tried them all, even knowing the lower frequencies probably didn't stand a chance anyway.
Again, try my suggestions above...


- Power - you're right. I need a direct power line to the battery bank and can do that this week.
Sounds good...
Follow basic procedures in the Sailmail Primer and written about here on Cruiser's Forum (such as in the "sticky") and you'll be good!



- Don't know - I might not be in hi power mode, clipping mode, compression mode, didn't do any FSK transmitting/observing.
I suspect that you are in high power mode, that's the default....
And, you're getting full, high power, when transmitting DSC...
But, to check/select High Power, simply press "F" (function key) and then "9", and you're in High Power...


--- The "clipping mod" is a modification (mod) / repair that Icom did to fix this problem...(it's not a "mode")
Read the referenced thread!

--- Speech Compressor...almost certainly Off....needs to be turned On, with software (or internal hardware), you cannot do this yourself...

--- When transmitting DSC, you are using FSK....so you did do FSK testing....
But, FYI, pushing the mode button until FSK shows up, allows you to transmit a steady, full-power carrier, for testing purposes, by then simply pressing the mic's PTT button....it's an easy way to test things....here again, no special tools/accessories (like a morse code key, or computer interface, etc.)...
You'll notice I didn't tell you to buy anything, except paying to get the Speech Compressor turned On...
Yes, I think an external power/SWR meter should be a part of all radio installs...and I always recommend having a dummy load and a few coax jumper cables on hand to test/troubleshoot...and these things will cost you about $150 all-in....so, Yes....get them!
BUT....
But, they will do you know good, if you don't have the knowledge/expertise to use 'em and evaluate the results...
And, since your current issues are rather minor (and quite common), we are able to troubleshoot without these items....but, I still think you should have them...



For on-board use, I prefer a "cross-needle" power/SWR meter, such as those made by Daiwa...(about $100, or les, depending on model and where you buy it)...buy a "200-watt" or "300 watt" dry dummy load (MFJ is okay) and some pre-made coax jumper cables...and you'll be out another $50 to $75, max...
Combined with some clip-on Ferrites and the $75 to Dockside....and you're at about $250, all-in!!
Not too bad, huh??






Hope this helps..



John



Have a look at some of my videos that actually show the M-802's display while I'm talking/transmitting, and you'll see what the radio's transmit power meter should look like...
Such as in this video, from 1m 50sec to 3m 10sec, you'll see what the power output looks like on the M-802's display (with the speech compressor turned On)...If your radio is only showing half of these segments illuminated, then you need to get the speech compressor turned On...


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Old 21-05-2017, 17:25   #10
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

You need to start diagnosing logically.

Check connections. Check continuity.

Try a wire antenna direct from the radio. Beware high voltage.

Use a SWR meter once you've confirmed all the emitting pieces are ok.

It helps to have some diagnosis skills. Now is a great time to hone them.
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Old 21-05-2017, 19:10   #11
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

Thanks again for all this. I'll be back on the boat all day tomorrow (not into the evening) and probably Tuesday and will check all these things, and will rewire the power. There's an excellent marine electronics shop two minutes away that sells/services ICOM, hopefully including the M802. If I can get them to come by the boat and do the compression on fix I'll be happy to pay them and just be done with it. They're a possible resource if I can't sort out the rest of these issues myself and with the help here.

As you might imagine there are a zillion things to do before my departure on the 5th or 6th. The boat is actually pretty much ready to go as it's been my focus, but I under estimated the home and life stuff that has to get handled as well.
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Old 21-05-2017, 20:52   #12
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

JR,
Sounds like you're on the right track....

I wish you good luck with the local Icom dealer...(they will need the CS-802 software and cloning cable....takes < 5 minutes...)
If they're unwilling or ignorant of what to do, call Gary at Dockside right away, he will be able to help, just have to send him the radio...

John
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Old 21-05-2017, 21:10   #13
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

don't know about Icom but on my Stevens ssb I have to key the mike first in order to get the radio to tune to the frequency for transmit mode.
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Old 22-05-2017, 11:25   #14
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

JR,
Let me know if you want to try a sked (scheduled contact) on-the-air....and what times might work for you...


Also, I forgot to point you to a couple other threads that might be of some help....don't spend your time reading them now, just for further reference and/or if you're still having problems that the other threads didn't address..

Recommended SWR Meter for SSB - Panel Meter?

Trouble-shooting SSB Tx problem

Re: SSB Great Receive Poor Transmit

Fair winds...

John
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Old 22-05-2017, 12:26   #15
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Re: New ICOM M802 SSB won't transmit - urgent advice needed

Well I've got good news. I called my local marine electronics hop and they sent a technician over mid-day today. He enabled the compression feature very quickly and then checked everything out. He was a very skilled and dedicated HAM so he briefly opened the HAM channels and made a contact. He thought everything was working as it should. He disabled that HAM capability before he left. Maybe I'll get back to that someday.

Later I was able to reach WLO on 1212 with a reasonably good signal. I'm much happier now with the rig and feel more confident in it doing its job as I learn more.

I scoped out the job to rewire the radio directly to my batts and got the materials. Will likely do that job by the end of the week. Will keep you posted.

Thanks all!

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