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Old 11-03-2013, 08:07   #31
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Re: SSB vs HAM

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Originally Posted by Richard Z View Post
Also, any leads for a used marine SSB set? Looks I may be able to get a used amateur unit and its tuner for $500 after I get my Ham licence...

Thanks agaib
richard
Check this site under Classifieds... Here is a sample: http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...ssb-99355.html

You may also find refurbished units and tuners... Look in your area for HAM Radio Stores that sell Marine SSB units.
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Old 11-03-2013, 08:38   #32
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Re: SSB vs HAM

Tom,

Thanks for that link. But for $2500 ill stick to my epirb for emergencies, ditch the rain catchment for water and buy a watermaker...

I guess im a cheapo when it comes to non-essential systems. But I will keep lookibg for something in my budget...

Thanks again.

Richard
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Old 11-03-2013, 08:55   #33
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Re: SSB vs HAM

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Originally Posted by jeremiason View Post
This section of the FCC regulation is refering to HAM only radios, not USA Marine Radios, built to FCC specifications.

This is the rule that prohibits HAM radios from being used on ships as a Ship's Radio.

Here is the link to the entire FCC Part 97
and here's the definition of an amateur station from Part 97:

Quote:
Amateur Station - A station in an amateur radio service consisting of the apparatus necessary for carrying on radiocommunications
If I am using a marine SSB radio for HAM communications then it is an amateur station, and the regulations are quite clear, except for the antenna the systems must be separate (in the US, and on US flagged vessels where US regulations apply). It may be a regulation that is entirely ignored (like speed limits), but nonetheless the regs on the books prohibit the mixing of the two. And like speed limits, if some LEO () has a problem with you the regulation is on the books for them to enforce.

Don't know why we keep the FCC has never really been unclear about this. The amateur service is built around the idea of experimentation in the radio sciences, and the regulations are built around that. The last thing the FCC wants is some amateur tinkering around with a critical piece of ship's safety equipment. That may be an antiquated view of the amateur service itself, since few HAMs actually do experiment, especially in the HF bands (yes, I am aware that some HAMs do, I myself have spent more than a few hours testing and tweaking antennas, for instance, but for every one like me I can point to 10 who bought everything off the shelf and never conducted a single experiment). Antiquated or not, the regulation says that an "amateur station" cannot share equipment with a marine SSB station.
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Old 11-03-2013, 09:38   #34
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Re: SSB vs HAM

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Originally Posted by Dsanduril View Post
and here's the definition of an amateur station from Part 97:



If I am using a marine SSB radio for HAM communications then it is an amateur station, and the regulations are quite clear, except for the antenna the systems must be separate (in the US, and on US flagged vessels where US regulations apply). It may be a regulation that is entirely ignored (like speed limits), but nonetheless the regs on the books prohibit the mixing of the two. And like speed limits, if some LEO () has a problem with you the regulation is on the books for them to enforce.

Don't know why we keep the FCC has never really been unclear about this. The amateur service is built around the idea of experimentation in the radio sciences, and the regulations are built around that. The last thing the FCC wants is some amateur tinkering around with a critical piece of ship's safety equipment. That may be an antiquated view of the amateur service itself, since few HAMs actually do experiment, especially in the HF bands (yes, I am aware that some HAMs do, I myself have spent more than a few hours testing and tweaking antennas, for instance, but for every one like me I can point to 10 who bought everything off the shelf and never conducted a single experiment). Antiquated or not, the regulation says that an "amateur station" cannot share equipment with a marine SSB station.
So based on your interpretation of the FCC rule... ICOM is illegally making radios that can transmit on both Marine and HAM Bands?

Or is it one of those things that just because they make it doesn't mean you can use it?
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Old 11-03-2013, 09:50   #35
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Re: SSB vs HAM

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Originally Posted by Richard Z View Post
I guess im a cheapo when it comes to non-essential systems. But I will keep lookibg for something in my budget...

Thanks again.

Richard
icom 706 seems pretty popular as a ham unit..
icom 706 | eBay

still need a tuner but then you'll have email via winlink and weather.

Where are you going?
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Old 11-03-2013, 10:20   #36
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Re: SSB vs HAM

Thank you.

Im going to the Med as my first leg then onwards...
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Old 11-03-2013, 10:42   #37
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Re: SSB vs HAM

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Originally Posted by Richard Z View Post
Thank you.

Im going to the Med as my first leg then onwards...
Sounds nice

One thing not mentioned much re the ham side is the degree of control you can get linking up to a computer. I don't know much about the marine ssb side of things but with the likes of a 706 (I use a ic7000 which is similar) you can easily link it up to free software and control the whole lot from computer screen. Not really necessary for casual operating but if you get into it more it makes a world of difference. I use ham radio delux, latest version costs money but free older versions around. Though a proper comm ports help lots (and for gps if you go for opencpn ) the usb/serial adapters can be a bit of a pest.
It also lets the rms email program tune the radio automatically.

In the mean time if you want to have a listen around the ham and SSB bands then this is well worth a download..
SDR-RADIO.com > Download
Lets you listen to a load of receivers over the internet from around the world, has digital decoders built in as well so you could have a look at whats available in the world of weatherfaxes

Careful though, you might get hooked
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Old 11-03-2013, 10:58   #38
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Re: SSB vs HAM

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Originally Posted by jeremiason View Post
So based on your interpretation of the FCC rule... ICOM is illegally making radios that can transmit on both Marine and HAM Bands?

Or is it one of those things that just because they make it doesn't mean you can use it?
That's actually covered in 47 CFR Part 80 (the marine SSB regulations):

Quote:
ß 80.203 Authorization of transmitters for licensing
...
(l) Ship station transmitters may be certificated for emissions not shown in ß 80.205 of this part. However, such emissions are not authorized for use in the United States or for communications with U.S. coast stations.
Guess that will lead us to a discussion of documentation vs. state registration. As with embassies, it is the legal contention that a documented vessel is part of the US, so that regulation would apply as "use in the United States". Wonder how that flies with a state registered vessel? Notwithstanding, of course, that your US HAM license prohibits it in part 97. So, if you are tranmitting using a reciprocal license from a state-registered boat outside US waters?

I made the suggestion in another thread that you use a computer profile to erase the definition of the marine SSB channels from your radio and install the HAM frequencies when you want to use HAM, then do the reverse when you want to use marine. I would argue that if the radio is not configured for marine SSB then I do not have a marine SSB station aboard, and vice versa with the amateur station. Which shows (IMO) the silliness of the regulations. Lots of those around, and some people choose to ignore them (and I'll take the 5th in talking about my own installation).
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:05   #39
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Re: SSB vs HAM

For the average user a Marine SSB will do the job and you dont have to get a General License, and can just switch to a designated channel etc. The SSB will be easier. Frankly, forget boat to boat communication... no one is listening most of the time, and if they are it depends a lot on propagation, time of day, how far away they are (or how near they are). Weather fax and basic email is a great thing though. Some radios work better for Packet radio than others.
OTOH It may depend on how much you like to tinker. For $450 you can get a Kenwood TS450 Ham radio that can be programmed to work on the Duplex Marine SSB freq's. (lets not get into the whole discussion about emissions...)
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:05   #40
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Re: SSB vs HAM

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Originally Posted by Dsanduril View Post
That's actually covered in 47 CFR Part 80 (the marine SSB regulations):



Guess that will lead us to a discussion of documentation vs. state registration. As with embassies, it is the legal contention that a documented vessel is part of the US, so that regulation would apply as "use in the United States". Wonder how that flies with a state registered vessel? Notwithstanding, of course, that your US HAM license prohibits it in part 97. So, if you are tranmitting using a reciprocal license from a state-registered boat outside US waters?

I made the suggestion in another thread that you use a computer profile to erase the definition of the marine SSB channels from your radio and install the HAM frequencies when you want to use HAM, then do the reverse when you want to use marine. I would argue that if the radio is not configured for marine SSB then I do not have a marine SSB station aboard, and vice versa with the amateur station. Which shows (IMO) the silliness of the regulations. Lots of those around, and some people choose to ignore them (and I'll take the 5th in talking about my own installation).
It is interesting that the FCC Type Certifies the ICOM M-802 for dual purpose. It makes it a legal radio to buy, but not legal to use as dual purpose.
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:08   #41
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Re: SSB vs HAM

You cant use a radio both ways at once! I guess that means you are not using it as dual purpose!
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:19   #42
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Re: SSB vs HAM

Sorry if this should be a thread by itself, I beg of admins to move it if considered appropriate.

I grab a bargain Garmin VHF 300i AIS and I'm also interested in a HAM license. I searched the web but found nothing about opening it for HAM frequencies. Should I look for a "proper" HAM rig or is this doable for a start?
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:29   #43
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Re: SSB vs HAM

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Originally Posted by Richard Z View Post
[...] So, a few have mentioned that a marine unit (M802) can be opened or unlocked for ham frequencies... Does that cover eventually all of the Amateur spectrum, or at least all the frequencies that are used for communication nets?
Also, is that done by the company or by me on a personal level?
Richard
The M802 will cover most of the HF ham bands. It may not cover the 10-meter band (28 - 29.7 MHz) -- I can't tell from the specs. Anyway, the ham bands you will be using are typically 40 meters (7.0 - 7.3 MHz), 20 meters (14.0 - 14.35 MHz) and 15 meters (21.0 - 21.45 MHz). Most of the marine mobile action takes place on 20 meters.

There are other ham bands in the VHF, UHF, and higher frequencies, as well as some lower frequencies, but these aren't going to be too useful at sea.

I understand that the M802 can be opened up for ham use quite easily by the user -- just a couple of button-pushes or something. Other Icom marine radios require a little programming, using external data interfaces that you will probably not have handy.


Here is a nice chart of the ham frequencies: http://www.arrl.org/files/file/Hambands_color.pdf

And here is a pretty good article about marine SSB: Latitude 38 - Idiot's Guide to Marine SSB
As I recall, there are one or two minor bits I disagree with, but in general it's very helpful.
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:31   #44
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Re: SSB vs HAM

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Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
You cant use a radio both ways at once! I guess that means you are not using it as dual purpose!
I m not trying to be argumentative, so please don't assume that.

I am just pointing out that the ICOM M-802 comes from the factory with pre-set frequencies for both Maritime and HAM (including Baja Net-7.233.5 LSB and 14330 Net- 14300 USB), which require a HAM General Class license.

The M-802 has also been Type Approved by the FCC for both uses...

So it seems that either ICOM is setting you up to violate FCC rules or there is another explaintion or FCC rule that explains why you can use it as both a HAM and Maritime radio.
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:42   #45
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Re: SSB vs HAM

dockhead-
"but you must strictly avoid any kind of commercial correspondence." Not quite. The FCC clarified that year ago. Hams are not allowed to have any "pecuniary interest" in their communications, but they are allowed to place commercial orders. The classic example being that you can use your radio to make a phone patch and order a pizza for dinner, but you cannot call into a pizzeria that you own to ask how things are going.

Richard, you will find that using ANY licensed radio service to communicate with any other class of service is generally illegal. No ham-to-marine, no marine-to-cb, no cross communications allowed in general, anywhere. There are a handful of specific exemptions that won't matter here.

Regarding using the same radio for dual services...someone kindly cited the actual FCC reg elsewhere, I promptly forgot if it is a ham or marine reg, but when both "stations" are installed on a boat in theory they cannot use entirely the same equipment. In practice, they can, will, and do so. As long as you are properly licensed for the service you are using, AND you have the discretion not to flaunt it in front of a uniform, AND you understand why it is possible to get in trouble on any service if your equipment is creating interference or a complaint is filed against you.

There are a number of little-understood issues involving technicalities and the most comprehensive answers are likely to come from toll-free call to the FCC, or an email to them. For US citizens they are the top authority in these matters and they're generally aces at answering phone calls and explaining these things in detail.

Budget? Ham radio.
Ease of operations? Pay for a marine HF SSB installation.

And FWIW there's a rumour that "ham" radio comes from the days of telegraphy and the disdain that professional telegraphers had for "ham fisted amateurs" (clumsy amateurs) who had the nerve to try sending code over the airwaves. Telegraphers can actually recognize each other's "voice" on the telegraph key, it is called their "fist". Never heard a better excuse for another reason that "ham" anything and telegraphy would combine.
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