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Old 17-04-2007, 07:46   #46
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Paul,

You've recovered from last night! :-)

Thanks for that.

With the new 605 (Feb 2007) it appears that if you are applying for BOTH the Restricted Radio Operators License (RR) and the Ships Station License, you can check the RR box on the top right hand side of Schedule E, pay your filing fee of $160, and get both licenses.

If you're applying for just the RR license, e.g., to replace an old one issued prior to 2001, it's $60.

I thinks CSYman's right about going for the higher class license; this would make sense for some people.

Why in hell do they have to make this licensing stuff so complex? And include such contradictory and confusing "information"?

Wanna avoid all this crap? And still have long-distance hf comms aboard? Get a ham license! All most no cost, just a bit of study.

Bill
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Old 17-04-2007, 10:36   #47
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Quote:
Why in hell do they have to make this licensing stuff so complex? And include such contradictory and confusing "information"?
I can't tell you how long it took to find out the 537 was no longer even used. There is just a lot of changes that happened over a period of time with a lot of them happening in early February with the new online system then again with the new regulations. The on line system was built before all the reg changes. It sort of works that way anyhow. They don't get budgets for enhanced system,s but as soon as new regs come along then they get some more money. You just can't build a decent system when it works like that.

I think when the dust settles it will be easier, but there is a lot of old information that is now obsolete. The information for folks coming back to renew sonmething that no longer exists is a real treat too. They have the new on line system working well enough but if you think you know what you need before you go there try again. Start by setting up an FRN ID so you don't act like a non person. After that you can talk to people and fill out the electronic forms.

The toll free number is pretty decent. I think they expected all this confusion and the person I had to talk to was pretty quick about what was where and what I needed to complete.

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Wanna avoid all this crap? And still have long-distance hf comms aboard? Get a ham license! All most no cost, just a bit of study.
Only if you stay on shore. The station license still is required in foreign waters, but at least now they bundle all the rest of the paperwork by checking a few boxes.

For HAM study materials you can go here and do a lot for free:

HamTestOnline™

But for extra money you get access to all the questions (not just some) as well as a lot of free online interactive trainning aids. You learn some basic 1800's electricity formulas that apply to everything (not just radio) plus a few rules and next thing you know you can get the HAM license.
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Old 17-04-2007, 11:19   #48
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Coot, I think the FCC needs a new coat of arms, kinda like the ones from Britain and Wales, but instead of other powerful or fanciful animals, it needs to show "three Confusions, Rampant".<G>

In all honesty, do you know ANY organization that is giving ham exams for free and not charging the $14? Most I know will charge $14 "per day" and you can take one of as many different exams as you like for that. Others charge $14 per exam, while a very generous few will even let you retake an exam that you just missed--at no extra charge.

But free? Never in all the blue blazes have I heard of an organization that generous.

See now, if J.Edgar Hoover were alive, we could sic'em on the FCC by claiming they were all Communists trying to create confusion and shut down the US radio systems. Why is it there's never a nasty little fascist around when you need one?
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Old 17-04-2007, 11:57   #49
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In all honesty, do you know ANY organization that is giving ham exams for free and not charging the $14?
With all test facilities the examiners giving the test all have to be certified. Many are part of Radio Clubs and they use the money to help operate the club so most examiners don't make anything. Given that the examiners have to be certified does keep the market tighter. $14 for conducting an exam won't make anyone rich. If you pass they also have to fill out the document you need to apply to the FCC as well.
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Old 17-04-2007, 12:05   #50
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Paul, I don't say anyone is getting rich, please don't mistake me on that. And I don't say $14 is unreasonable, I think it is VERY reasonable, very much more so than the cover charge in any diner.<G>

I'm only saying that as a practical matter, the cost of the license is $14, not free. Cover charge, door charge, application processing fee, shipping and handling, call it what you will. The FCC has simply taken THEIR substantial costs (yes, I remember the old FCC examination centers when they did the testing) and outsourced it to the amateur community, where it is probably being done below actual cost now.

Still a great bargain--just not 'free'.<G>
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Old 17-04-2007, 12:41   #51
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Originally Posted by hellosailor
Coot, Why is it there's never a nasty little fascist around when you need one?
Whaaaaaaaaaat? With THIS Administration? No shortage of 'em these days :-(

Keep the faith, folks. A better time's a-comin'
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Old 17-04-2007, 20:22   #52
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Originally Posted by hellosailor
Coot, I think the FCC needs a new coat of arms, kinda like the ones from Britain and Wales, but instead of other powerful or fanciful animals, it needs to show "three Confusions, Rampant".<G>
Absolutely. When I did the paperwork to get the ship's station license and the RRs, I spent hours trying to figure it all out. If I remember correctly, I filled out 7 forms total. The stupidest is that when you send in a form that requires you to pay a fee, you have to send the form, a check, AND ANOTHER FORM TELLING THEM WHAT THE CHECK IS FOR.

The most disturbing part of the instructions? If you make a mistake filling out the forms, they can reject your application but keep your money.

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In all honesty, do you know ANY organization that is giving ham exams for free and not charging the $14?
The only ones I know about are the two that are listed on that web site I cited (baltarc.com) . They both operate under the Laurel VEC, so you might try googling for something like "amateur radio test laurel vec". Laurel VEC is named after a town in Maryland, but I seem to recall seeing some of their sponsored exams in other states, even Florida.

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But free? Never in all the blue blazes have I heard of an organization that generous.
Well, the three guys giving the test are required to donate their time (i.e. they can ask you to pay for photocopies, pencils, etc, but not their labor), so it's just a matter of having a club that is willing to eat the small cost of the exam. Actually, I kind of wonder how the ARRL arrived at $14, but a couple dollars here, a couple dollars there, and I suppose it doesn't take that long to get to 14.
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Old 25-04-2007, 19:05   #53
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Its called "Personal Empire Building for Bureaucrats" When politicians need advice who do they ask first? The people who campaigned for them and who are reponsible for them having that job? No way .Bureaucrats are in their face every day. They ask the bureaucrrats and ask no further.What do bureaucrats advocate? That which is in the best job security and pay interests of the bureaucrats.
Do they ever look at the advice given by bureaucrats, and ask themselves 'What is this bureucrats personal stake in what they are advocating? Never.
Brent
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Old 27-04-2007, 15:50   #54
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Ok - I was going to create a new thread, but decided to tag onto this one instead. I have sent an e-mail to the FCC, but I am curious to see in anyone here has any answers as well. I was not as knowledgeable about MMSI numbers as I should have been when I got one. I just knew I needed it for the EPRIB (fast). I should have done a bit more research

I currently have an MMSI number through BoatUS.com which is programmed into my VHF and EBIRB. It now looks like I need an MMSI from the FCC for international waters. How will getting a new MMSI affect my radio and EBIRP? Will they have to be reprogrammed? Is it possible to get a radio license from the FCC with the MMSI number from BoatUS.com?
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Old 27-04-2007, 16:10   #55
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If you travel internationally you can't use the Boat US MMSI number and you do need one from the FCC for the VHF (if you have DSC capabilities) not the EPIRB. For the EPIRB you send them the serial number on the unit and that is it. Most VHF radios can have the MMSI reset 2 or 3 times. If you VHF does not have DSC then you don't need an MMSI number since there is no place to set it. You can either delete or ignore the Boat US MMSI since you'll never activate it again.

The good news is all this is covered under the Form 605 and the same fee. If you need something you didn't have when you first file the 605 you go on line and edit the changes then they send out a new paper and no additional fees. For $160 you basically get free updates. This includes all the door prizes except HAM. That is another set of paperwork. Everything else is all done with the 605 Plus the one you file so you can use a credit card. The 605 will walk you through the steps and you can download the PDF doc with all the same stuff so you know what to prepare for. Once you have an FRN ID you are ready to go on line.
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Old 17-05-2007, 07:20   #56
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As far as the ham license goes, it is not too hard to get and is not very expensive as some have mentioned. Do a little studying, take some practice tests on the websites that have them available and take your test.
Our oldest daughter took her first ham test at age 5 and got her tech ticket and when she was 7, she upgraded to Extra class affording all ham frequencies available to US operators.
She loves ham radio and not only talks to ships on the HF and VHF but has also talked to the Commander of the International Space Station on her VHF while he was on the space station.
Having a ham license can be more than practical, it can be alot of fun, especially if you have kids aboard.
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Old 17-05-2007, 10:28   #57
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If your new radio has the DSC function you will need to program in a MMSI number. If you get this number from Boat US it is registered only with the US Coast Guard and not internationally. You will get the MMSI automatically from the Gov. if you get your license from the FCC. In Canada if you are in major trouble and hit the red distress button a distress signal will go out and the Canadian CG will receive it, but will be unable to determine your name, type of boat, length, etc., as you will not be in the international data base. If connected to your GPS they would have your position however. I checked this out recently with the CG in Victoria, BC. as I am going up there this summer.
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Old 05-07-2007, 12:29   #58
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I just received my Technician Class amateur license and call sign and am presently studying for the General Class. I am very confused about the difference between marine VHF license and amateur. Do I need to have a separate marine vhf license and call sign to operate SSB internationally from my vessel, or will my General Class amateur license cover me?
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Old 05-07-2007, 15:08   #59
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Trim50, you need a seperate VHF license to operate VHF in other countries. I believe the license covers both VHF and Marine SSB, but I'm not sure on that. Amateur license only gives you permission to operate Amateur radio in US or International waters. You will need a reciprocal license to operate Amateur radio in a foreign country.

Check out this thread on the SSCA

SSCA Discussion Board :: View topic - SSB/HAM Licensing
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Old 05-07-2007, 15:56   #60
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Trim50,

An easy thing to remember: your amateur radio license has NOTHING to do with marine radio....either VHF or SSB. It only allows you to operate a ham radio on the authorized ham bands HF, VHF, etc., depending on the class of your amateur license.

You need NO license for operation of marine VHF radios in the U.S. However, if you go foreign (e.g., Bahamas, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean countries, etc.), you MUST have: (1) an FCC-issued station license for your boat; and (2) at a minimum, a restricted radio operators permit for marine radio (no test). And, even if you don't go foreign, you need both a station license and an operators license to operate a marine SSB either in the U.S. or abroad.

The station license for your boat can allow you to operate SSB, radar, EPIRBs, etc., as well as VHF...just check all the boxes, even if you don't now have the equipment.

The FCC licensing website has all the info you need.

Bill
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