Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 26-07-2011, 21:10   #46
Senior Cruiser
 
osirissail's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: A real life Zombie from FL
Boat: Gulfstar 53 - Osiris
Posts: 5,416
Images: 2
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Hacking View Post
. . . WiFi & 3G are pretty plug & pray, but they don't work offshore. And the concept of long distance WiFi implies pirating someone's signal, which might be OK in the US but it's not nice if other folks have to pay for bandwidth you're using. . . .
Actually in the Caribbean these days, "pirating" or using somebody's unlocked wifi is not available. Virtually all the private WiFi systems are locked with WPA and WPA2 and other locking systems.
- - But there are plenty of available WiFi signals for pay and most are set up so you pay over the link/internet. You can get hourly, daily, monthly or quarterly rates and use your credit card when the system starts up.
- - There are a few "free" WiFi's but they are disappearing rapidly. Even the "free" ones now ask for a donation to a local island charity before you get the password.
- - And cell phone "AirCard" systems are making a come back after being almost wiped out by WiFi.
- - The term "Long Distance WiFi" as I use it means being on your boat within a couple of miles of a land based WiFi system. The new amplified/powered USB systems with a high gain antenna allow you to remain on your boat and access the internet rather than having to go ashore.
- - Amongst cruisers in the various popular anchorages where we "hole up" for awhile and have cruiser VHF nets - the boats with HAM and AirMail/WinLink are becoming a major pain as they bleed over into the VHF and block out the morning VHF nets.
__________________

__________________
osirissail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26-07-2011, 21:33   #47
Long Range Cruiser
 
MarkJ's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Australian living on "Sea Life" currently in England.
Boat: Beneteau 393 "Sea Life"
Posts: 12,828
Images: 25
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

Quote:
Originally Posted by canucksailor View Post
I'm getting the responses of a bunch of HAM guys, which is interesting, but I'd really like to see the replies of non-ham sailors,


Your question feels like an oxymoron. People who have no interest in Ham arn't going to give much of a response.

I think Ham and SSB are crazy, obsolete, outdated and been left in the dark.

My friend Bill on here thinks otherwise, and I do take his point that the USA has some people who may be listening in.

I find it totally ridiculous that there is the need for some test. Not just new communications gear, but all modern technical gear is basically workable without an instruction book let alone a license.

The GUI wars of 30 years ago fixed that crap didn't they?

From TV remotes to mobile phones no sane person needs a book nor a test.

When you bought your new iPad did you have to look in the instruction book? Is there even an instruction book printed ever anymore?

As for having a bit of clutter on the boat that only one person can use is detrimental to any idea of safety being an issue for all aboard.

The only bit of kit on board that I need a book for is the Raymarine instruments to find their way through their stupid setup menu. No wonder Raymarine is about as happily set in my mind and a pimple on the chic I'm kissing.




Mark
__________________

__________________
Notes on a Circumnavigation.
OurLifeAtSea.com

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
MarkJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26-07-2011, 22:09   #48
Registered User
 
Jon Hacking's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Currently cruising Southern Indonesia, heading for peninsular Malaysia
Boat: Wauquiez 45' (now 48') catamaran
Posts: 523
Send a message via Skype™ to Jon Hacking
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

Quote:
Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
... Amongst cruisers in the various popular anchorages where we "hole up" for awhile and have cruiser VHF nets - the boats [with SSB] and AirMail/WinLink are becoming a major pain as they bleed over into the VHF and block out the morning VHF nets.
Which is exactly why we need to have a test for Hams. Most real Hams, even if they only use their rigs for Winlink email, know about things like bleed-over & frequency harmonics. And most are very considerate of staying quiet from the times of nets (SSB or VHF) if they know they're interfering.

Most SSB radios, Ham or Marine, will have some bleed-over at close range, but if they're bleeding into the VHF spectrum, it's a very poor installation. 162MHz VHF is a long way from the 10-15MHz that most folks use for SailMail/Winlink. I would guess that such a radio is VERY close by. Perhaps rowing over & making a polite request would relieve a lot of angst? Or even a politely worded broadcast over (low power) VHF?
__________________
-- Jon Hacking s/v Ocelot
Jon Hacking is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26-07-2011, 22:28   #49
Registered User
 
Jon Hacking's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Currently cruising Southern Indonesia, heading for peninsular Malaysia
Boat: Wauquiez 45' (now 48') catamaran
Posts: 523
Send a message via Skype™ to Jon Hacking
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
...People who have no interest in Ham arn't going to give much of a response.
I agree entirely, which is why I've stuck my oar in here even though I'm a Ham.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
I think Ham and SSB are crazy, obsolete, outdated and been left in the dark.
Mark, you're entitled to your opinion, but you're certainly not being forced to participate. Others get good valuable use from their SSBs. Personally, I consider it an essential safety item for my (worldwide, often off the beaten track) style of cruising, for many reasons.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
...I find it totally ridiculous that there is the need for some test. Not just new communications gear, but all modern technical gear is basically workable without an instruction book let alone a license.

Please see my post #48 above. It's not about using the equipment, it's about using the airwaves that we all have to share.
__________________
-- Jon Hacking s/v Ocelot
Jon Hacking is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 06:37   #50
Senior Cruiser
 
osirissail's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: A real life Zombie from FL
Boat: Gulfstar 53 - Osiris
Posts: 5,416
Images: 2
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

My comments about "interference" and John's response along with his response to MarkJ brings up an interesting thought on "testing."
- - In the very ancient days, automobiles were bought and driven with no government licensing or regulations. Now we have Driver's Ed and lots of "tests" to get your drivers license. Has any of that stopped or eliminated rude drivers and "road rage?"
- - Licensing is starting to show up in the boating world and do you really thing such licensing will stop or eliminate folks using their boats in rude and dangerous ways?
- - So changing the "testing" for a HAM from the existing "technical" only questioning and/or expanding it into radio usage/operation is, IMHO, not going to change or reduce the problems associated with self-centered/rude and sometimes reckless use of the system. There will always be that "10% of any population that don't give a crap about anybody else.
__________________
osirissail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 07:25   #51
Long Range Cruiser
 
MarkJ's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Australian living on "Sea Life" currently in England.
Boat: Beneteau 393 "Sea Life"
Posts: 12,828
Images: 25
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

Having a license for something that can't be enforced is spupidity at the highest level.

I know the Poms hate Aussis picking their zits but which of you remember this?



The funniest thing is they remained prowling the streets searching for people watching TV's illegally till quite recently!!
__________________
Notes on a Circumnavigation.
OurLifeAtSea.com

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
MarkJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 07:41   #52
Registered User
 
Auspicious's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Chesapeake Bay
Boat: HR 40
Posts: 1,793
Send a message via Skype™ to Auspicious
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

Quote:
Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
- - Amongst cruisers in the various popular anchorages where we "hole up" for awhile and have cruiser VHF nets - the boats with HAM and AirMail/WinLink are becoming a major pain as they bleed over into the VHF and block out the morning VHF nets.
Can you elaborate please? I've certainly run into Winlink and Sailmail users having an impact on the HF/SSB nets but never ever on VHF. You describe this as a common thing but I've never experienced it anywhere on the US East Coast, Bermuda, Bahamas, or northern Caribbean.

If there is interference on a VHF cruiser's net how do you know it is coming from HF stations? Where is this happening?
__________________
S/V Auspicious
AuspiciousWorks
Beware cut and paste sailors
Auspicious is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 07:49   #53
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Camden, ME
Boat: A Thistle and a Hallberg-Rassy 36
Posts: 661
Quote:
Originally Posted by osirissail
- - Amongst cruisers in the various popular anchorages where we "hole up" for awhile and have cruiser VHF nets - the boats with HAM and AirMail/WinLink are becoming a major pain as they bleed over into the VHF and block out the morning VHF nets.
This type of interference is likely the result of improper setting of microphone gain or Pactor drive levels that are overdriving transceiver modulation and causing huge increases in spurious emissions. It can also be caused by voltage levels to the transmitter that are too low, causing what is known as "FMing" of the signal. That is particularly likely to happen with consumer Ham gear which typically has a low tolerance for input voltages below 13 volts when being driven at full power. A knowledgeable ham would probably recognize all of these problems pretty quickly. There are plenty of other problems which can rear their ugly head and cause interference to other users of the radio spectrum. Someone who simply studied the test questions to pass their license test would be far less likely to figure out what is going on in these instances. So maybe licensing requirements are actually too lax. Thats why, IMHO, a thorough technical background and understanding of radio, electricity, and electronics - not just instruction on knob turning - is important for Ham privileges.

Strong HF signals that remain "in band" are not likely to cause problems with well designed marine VHF gear, BTW.
__________________
SoonerSailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 08:11   #54
Senior Cruiser
 
osirissail's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: A real life Zombie from FL
Boat: Gulfstar 53 - Osiris
Posts: 5,416
Images: 2
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

HF SSB interference with VHF nets is very common in the Bahamas, Northern Caribbean and Eastern Caribbean gathering anchorages. In these anchorages boats are usually grouped in a tight area so when another cruiser with AirMail/WinLink starts his morning email upload/download blasting out up to 150watts of RF folks nearby on the VHF morning nets get blanked or have to listen to the staccato digital signal of his system.
- - Frequent VHF requests to such boats to not do their HF SSB upload/downloads during the time that the VHF Nets operate usually fall on deaf ears as the HF SSB boat has his VHF turned off so he doesn't have to listen to the interference.
- - The equipment of the offending HF SSB is normally stock ICOM/SSC or other equipment with SCS demodulators, etc. and the use of stock VHF transceivers that do not have the features and abilities to trap and tune that pure HAM equipment does. And the equipment that the "average" cruiser uses is deliberately designed to be as "simple" to use as possible.
- - However, I have noticed that in the recent years the occurrences of SSB interference has decreased as more and more folks are moving off SSB and over to long distance (amplified antenna) WiFi. But 5 or more years ago, the interference was significant enough the the morning net's controller welcome spiel usually contained requests that cruisers please do not use their HF SSB email systems during the Net's time slot.
__________________
osirissail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 08:16   #55
cruiser
 
canucksailor's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: beautiful anchorages
Boat: Dufour 34, 1975
Posts: 347
Send a message via Yahoo to canucksailor Send a message via Skype™ to canucksailor
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

The reason I posted this here looking for non hams was because I felt that there would be people with issues about the hobby that kept them out of the ham world. Hams have 'certainly' not been shy about their opinions.
Quote:
Someone who simply studied the test questions to pass their license test would be far less likely to figure out what is going on in these instances. So maybe licensing requirements are actually too lax. Thats why, IMHO, a thorough technical background and understanding of radio, electricity, and electronics - not just instruction on knob turning - is important for Ham privileges.
'
Now that makes some sense.
__________________
canucksailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 08:22   #56
CF Adviser
 
Bash's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: sausalito
Boat: 14 meter sloop
Posts: 7,260
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

So what do the ham tests ask about downloading email?
__________________
cruising is entirely about showing up--in boat shoes.
Bash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 09:34   #57
Registered User
 
Jon Hacking's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Currently cruising Southern Indonesia, heading for peninsular Malaysia
Boat: Wauquiez 45' (now 48') catamaran
Posts: 523
Send a message via Skype™ to Jon Hacking
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

Quote:
Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
... Licensing is starting to show up in the boating world and do you really thing such licensing will stop or eliminate folks using their boats in rude and dangerous ways?
- - So changing the "testing" for a HAM from the existing "technical" only questioning and/or expanding it into radio usage/operation is, IMHO, not going to change or reduce the problems associated with self-centered/rude and sometimes reckless use of the system. There will always be that "10% of any population that don't give a crap about anybody else.
Osiris, I think you're being a little unfair. You're right that licensing isn't going to eliminate problems, & yes, there will probably be some percentage that are inconsiderate. And I'll go even further to say that some licensing is silly (in Australia you need a license to drive an outboard).

But don't you think that education (which is necessary to pass the exams) will reduce the problems somewhat? Probably significantly.

Of course, there's a simple solution if you don't want to take the Ham tests - use the Marine bands for your SSB needs. Nobody's forcing you to join. Hams fought for & gained the rights to certain bands. You can't blame them for wanting to protect them. Look at how vociferously the phone & TV companies protect their bands.

Quote:
...5 or more years ago, the interference was significant enough the the morning net's controller welcome spiel usually contained requests that cruisers please do not use their HF SSB email systems during the Net's time slot.
If you say so. We haven't been in the Caribbean since 2002/3. We hit most of the popular anchorages & listened to the Safety & Security SSB net most mornings & we didn't have a problem with interference then. But I'm glad to hear the problems are getting better.
__________________
-- Jon Hacking s/v Ocelot
Jon Hacking is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 10:08   #58
Registered User
 
Auspicious's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Chesapeake Bay
Boat: HR 40
Posts: 1,793
Send a message via Skype™ to Auspicious
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoonerSailor View Post
This type of interference is likely the result of improper setting of microphone gain or Pactor drive levels that are overdriving transceiver modulation and causing huge increases in spurious emissions. <snip>
I fully understand the potential causality. I simply haven't seen it. I have certainly seen intentional VHF-VHF interference but not HF/SSB-VHF interference, unintentional or not. I'd like to hear recordings to better educate myself. If it's somewhere I'm likely to be back to I'll drag a spectrum analyzer with me.

Inappropriate use of ham radio gear on marine frequencies certainly has lead to HF/SSB-HF/SSB interference but even that illegal and rude behavior hasn't led to HF/SSB-VHF that I have seen.

Three decades of radio licensure and paying attention to real world interference (particularly between ham transmitters and commercial TV (which used FM for audio before the digitial transition, just as marine VHF is FM)) hasn't shown the sort of interference between HF (below 30 MHz, although most marine use is below the 16 MHz band) and VHF (within shouting distance of 160 MHz for marine VHF) reported here.

Data is good.

Quote:
Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
- - Frequent VHF requests to such boats to not do their HF SSB upload/downloads during the time that the VHF Nets operate usually fall on deaf ears as the HF SSB boat has his VHF turned off so he doesn't have to listen to the interference.
Okay we have two people reporting interference and one saying it is the subject of VHF cruiser's nets. This differs from my experience. That's fine, we can't all be everywhere all the time. I'd really value some verifiable data. It is difficult to prove something doesn't happen, but it should be straightforward to prove it does.
__________________
S/V Auspicious
AuspiciousWorks
Beware cut and paste sailors
Auspicious is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 10:51   #59
Senior Cruiser
 
Jim Cate's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2008
Location: cruising SW Pacific
Boat: Jon Sayer 1-off 46 ft fract rig sloop strip plank in W Red Cedar
Posts: 11,441
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

'Day all,

Ann and I have been in lots of crowded anchorages over the past 25 years and have certainly had SSB and Pactor interference with our daily ham nets. Simply a fact of life, regrettable and inconsiderate at times but not a show stopper.

But never in all those years and anchorages has there been interference from either these sources or from HF ham traffic to any VHF transmissions.

Our experience started on the California coast, wandered through Mexico and the South Pacific and equatorial islands, lots of time in NZ and Oz. It seems odd that we have never experienced these "very common" problems.

Cheers,

Jim

N9GFT/VK4GFT
__________________
Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II , lying Port Cygnet, Tasmania once again
Jim Cate is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 27-07-2011, 11:43   #60
Registered User
 
Capt. lulz's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 159
Re: Opinions of Non-HAM Sailors Solicited

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Hacking View Post
  • SailMail: $700 radio + $700 modem + $300/year for short messages
  • Winlink: $700 radio + $700 modem but free with more stations & longer connect times (no business)
I have concerns with these methods of sending/receiving email. Because they are over radio, couldn't your messages be intercepted? And worse, your password?

I don't understand how this this works. Even if encrypted, your messages are only safe until it reaches its endpoint where it is decrypted, which I assume can be a 3rd party just before reaching your actual email server (man in the middle attack by design)

From what I understand, this is not a means to access the internet, which implies I cannot contact my email server directly, therefore unable to use standard encryption schemes such as SSL/TLS etc..
__________________

__________________
Capt. lulz is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

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




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 16:41.


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.