Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 10-05-2015, 04:50   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: house is in melbourne australia and Muscade currently in Med.
Boat: fontaine pajot Marquises 56
Posts: 116
ssb-hf network from bvi-bermuda-azores??

Is there a network for this area, leaving BVIs asap and hoping there is a network set up already.
__________________

__________________
karabil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2015, 15:50   #2
Registered User
 
ka4wja's Avatar

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Florida
Boat: Catalina 470
Posts: 2,033
Re: ssb-hf network from bvi-bermuda-azores??

karabil,
I came upon your query by accident....as this would probably have gotten many responses in the "Marine Electronics" section...

The short answer to your question is: sort-of yes, and sort-of no...
And, 12.359mhz / 12359khz ("12C" or ITU "12-1"), is the most often used frequency, for Atlantic crossings
...
Quote:
Originally Posted by karabil View Post
Is there a network for this area, leaving BVIs asap and hoping there is a network set up already.
Sorry about that...



You can certainly arrange skeds (pre-arranged schedules) with other boats, both ones doing the passage and those still in port, as well as communicate with those in other areas / on-shore, etc....
Just remember the number 1 cause of "poor communications" on-board is NOT bad radiowave propagation, but a combination of inexperienced operators and too much RFI (radio frequency interference)!!!



The long answer is:

1) 12.359mhz (12359khz), which is also known as "12C" or ITU 12-3, has become the sort-of defacto Marine HF-SSB "Trans Atlantic Net" frequency.

This was Herb's (Southbound II) Weather Net frequency, and is still used by MANY offshore sailors crossing the Atlantic and/or on longer passages to/from the Caribbean, etc.

As of right now, there is no "official" Trans-Atlantic Net (although I have purposed one, on and off now for the past few years), but you will find offshore sailors on this frequency talking to one-another (pre-arranged schedules and informal groups) as well as occasionally Herb himself doing some weather for an old friend.

My estimation is that in the past 25 years, this frequency is programmed into more Marine HF SSB radios around the world, than any other....


2) Depending on WHERE you wish to communicate and at what TIME of day, there are options / alternatives for you...
Note that "TIME of day" is usually talked about as, at the midpoint of an east-west communications path...
{I've written extensively about this before, and have posted some videos on Youtube that will help as well...so, in addition to what I write here, please spend 15 - 30 minutes watching a video or two, and reading some of the details in the links provided below...}

a) In general:
-- the higher the sun is in the sky, the higher the frequency you will need to use...
-- the lower the sun is (such as at night), the lower the frequency you will need to use...
-- the longer the distance, the higher the frequency...
-- the shorter the distance, the lower the frequency...


b) Your TYPICAL radio operating range on 12mhz, such as 12.359mhz, from morning thru evening, is typically from 0 -75/100miles, and from 250/300 miles out to 4000/5000 miles....(and even longer ranges, as I regularly hear stations from 9000 - 11,000 miles away from me, right here at the dock here in S. Florida, on 12.362mhz and 12.365mhz!)

(although some/many times there is no "hole" from 75/100miles to 250/300miles, some/many times there is....and due to this "skip zone", if you require communications in this zone, then a lower frequency, such as 8mhz / 8.294mhz, will be better...)

Typically noise is less and signals stronger in later afternoon / early evening (or early mornings), and these are also good times for the skipper / navigator to on-the-air, and making navigation/weather inquiries/decisions....
But understand that 12mhz, 12.359mhz, can become sporadic once a few hours past sunset and although summertime use, even after midnight is usually still good, be aware that daily variations can make 12mhz unusable by midnight...

{Although, probably NOT too viable for your application, some might want to take note, that should they not require ranges closer than 500/600 miles, but do desire longer-range daytime communications, 16mhz, such as 16.528mhz, is the next step up....and this can allow even better signals/range over the 2000 - 10,000 mile range...and the 16mhz frequencies are going to be especially good for cross-Atlantic communications during mid-day...}


c) TYPICAL radio operating range on 8mhz, such as 8.294mhz, varies throughout the day....very early mornings and late afternoons (within an hour of sunrise and sunset) you can see ranges from 0 - 400/500 miles, but closer to midday, expect ranges from 0 - 200/250 miles...

Nighttime ranges of 8mhz / 8.294mhz, can be 1000's of miles....but be aware that summertime static (from distant lightning) can make these lower frequencies pretty noisy!!
Once the whole path is in darkness, 8mhz is a very long-range frequency band!



d) So, as you can see, if you are desiring to ONLY communicate to/from a few other boats quite close to you, then 8.294mhz is a good choice....
But as boats spread out, and/or as boats depart on different days and/or different departure points, etc. you are not likely to be too close to others much, and 12.359mhz becomes a good choice...

For example, if you are trying to stay in touch with some other boats that are CLOSE to you, say 100 - 250 miles away, then an 8mhz channel, such as 8.294mhz (8294hz) / 8A / ITU 8-1, would generally provide better signals and reliability...
But, remember that you maximum daytime range there is about 400 - 500 miles MAX!, and once you're beyond 250-300 miles you're better off on 12mhz, such as 12.359mhz...



3) There are some other frequencies used by short-range regional Marine HF-SSB Nets, such as Cruiseheimer's on 8.152mhz / 8152khz ("Cruiseheimer's" at 1230z....and "doo-Dah" at 2100z), but neither of these nets would typically be of much use to you....(although you may hear a few other boats on the air during those net times, if you are actually heading to Bermuda...as you will be close to within range, especially before the Cruiseheimer's and after the Doo-dah..)

If you are a ham radio operator, there is always the Maritime Mobile Service Net (MMSN), and its associated nets, on 14.300mhz, from 1200z thru 0300z (almost all day and night)...
Maritime Mobile Service Network



4) Here are some more details and further explanation/discussion....
And, probably more importantly, links to some easy-to-understand videos with LIVE real world examples of what I'm writing about...

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



Offshore / Hi-Seas Weather data / forecasts

Tips for using an HF-SSB Radio (mostly for newcomers)








If you have good internet and a hour or so, have a look...
Here are some Youtube playlists:

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


Marine HF Comms...
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...ZDo_Jk3NB_Bt1y


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


Offshore weather...
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...zdjTJjHlChruyY




5) And, finally.....if you're leaving ASAP....please be aware that the Atlantic is still a bit rough and tumbling, near the Azores!!
With > a dozen rescued, at least 5 boats abandoned, and others damaged, and lives lost...just 3 - 4 days ago!!
(yes, I realize that you are > 2000 nm SE of there....just wanted you to be aware...)



I do this helps...

Fair winds..

John
__________________

__________________
John, KA4WJA
s/v Annie Laurie, WDB6927
MMSI# 366933110
ka4wja is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2015, 07:36   #3
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: house is in melbourne australia and Muscade currently in Med.
Boat: fontaine pajot Marquises 56
Posts: 116
Re: ssb-hf network from bvi-bermuda-azores??

Fantastic John,
Thankyou for all the info.
The boys are leaving BVI's this morning so will pass on.
__________________
karabil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2015, 16:35   #4
Registered User
 
ka4wja's Avatar

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Florida
Boat: Catalina 470
Posts: 2,033
Re: ssb-hf network from bvi-bermuda-azores??

Kara,
You're very welcome...

Please be aware that without a "Net" or a scheduled contact time and frequency, the only way that HF-SSB radio works is by using HF-DSC to contact other vessels and shore stations....(as nobody has been required to monitor HF-SSB Voice frequencies for more than 16 years now!!!....nowadays it is via HF-DSC...)

Just fyi, as I wrote earlier, the number one reason for HF-SSB "issues" on-board is a combination of on-board RFI (noise/static produced on-board your boat!) and inexperienced operators....
NOT "propagation" or "radiowave" issues!!!

This means that many of the comments you see about how "bad" propagation was, etc...are usually myths...
Quote:
Originally Posted by karabil View Post
Fantastic John,
Thankyou for all the info.
The boys are leaving BVI's this morning so will pass on.
Fair winds..

John
__________________
John, KA4WJA
s/v Annie Laurie, WDB6927
MMSI# 366933110
ka4wja is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
Azores, Bermuda, ssb

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Garmin GMS 10 network port expander vs network hub gettinthere Marine Electronics 0 04-06-2013 17:42
Crew Wanted: Atlantic Crossing: BVI - Bermuda via Azores, Spain on Catamaran daniel therrien Crew Archives 0 21-04-2011 05:52
Crew Wanted: Ft. Lauderdale - Bermuda - Azores - Gibraltar (May 2010) bb beware Crew Archives 9 14-06-2010 12:15



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 21:33.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.