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rsn48 19-10-2006 12:00

Hand held VHF and land transmission
I have been taught in my radio course that hand held VHF can't be used on land. Now I can see this law making sense if you are permanently transmitting from land, but if I go in the Dink to the little town by the pier, surely people have contacted the boat with their hand held to verify how many eggs to buy, etc.

Is this law right up there with the "show the cone" when you are motoring and sailing?

btrayfors 19-10-2006 12:03

Yep. Don't ask, don't tell. And, do it VERY sparingly.

Pblais 19-10-2006 18:06

Get some hand held GMRS / FRS units not VHF. My wife got some so she could find me ashore. The darn things actually work and cost less than a hand held VHF. They work for short a range such as in a port. They are totally legal too. The 1 watt units go about 5 miles line of sight. You can buy two for less than one hand held VHF.

The other alternative is to not tell us about it.

rsn48 19-10-2006 18:29

Paul, the newest GMRS/FRS unit work much further than the older ones. In Canada the older ones were advertised at 3 kilometres, now I've seen some advertised to 21 kilometres. A kilometre is .62 miles.

Sunspot Baby 20-10-2006 04:31

We all have hand helds to work with dinghy or from cockpit. Family radio frequencies are not universal country to country, so you can end up being illegal anyway. I think fudging on shore use of VHF is the better way to go.

Having said that the small FRS (especialy voice activated) can be a great tool anchoring or when one is up the mast. Cuts down on shouting.


robbie_d 20-10-2006 06:37

Just use a dink (boat name+digny) call long as you are with a mile or so of the water no big deal.

hellosailor 20-10-2006 11:22

"The 1 watt units " I thought FRS was limited to 500mW (1/2W) and of course GMRS requires a license.
Discretion being the better part of valor...<G>...Yes, it is incredible how many dinghies get inland.<G> Or how we get spoiled by cell phones.

Canibul 01-11-2006 14:59

interesting thread. All the houses on this island have VHF radios, and everyone listens to 16. People still use them, too. And for things totally unrelated to boats. The cabs in "the city" have VHF marine radios in them. Guess they dont care much for the FCC.

hellosailor 01-11-2006 15:14

"Guess they dont care much for the FCC." The FCC has no jurisdiction in the Turls & Caicos.<G>

And if you live far enough off the beaten path, and no one complains...One hand clapping is silent.<G>

AnchorageGuy 01-11-2006 15:58

The no use on land rule applies to the US and is an FCC ruling. The FCC although they would like to, has no jurisdiction outside of the US.

Pun Pun 01-11-2006 16:19

Doesnt the CG use land based VHF?

senormechanico 01-11-2006 18:27


Originally Posted by btrayfors
Yep. Don't ask, don't tell. And, do it VERY sparingly.

And use low power.

coot 01-11-2006 22:26


Originally Posted by Pun Pun
Doesnt the CG use land based VHF?

Yes. The rule we are talking about here is really the subset that applies to recreational boats. Other rules apply in other circumstances. For example, a business that can show a real need to use marine VHF to communicate with boats can get a license to use marine VHF from their land-based facility. The coast guard is licensed under some similar provision. They certainly would not have difficulty showing a legitimate need.

Entlie 02-11-2006 05:04


Originally Posted by robbie_d
Just use a dink (boat name+digny) call long as you are with a mile or so of the water no big deal.

We use "Tenderfoot" as a call sign when one of us is on shore. Doesn't call attention to your dinghy being tied up somewhere unattended.

Sailing Catamaran Sunspot Baby

Sonny 02-11-2006 06:15

Just returned from a charter in the Bahamas (Abaco). Everyone uses the VHF on land and on the water. The FCC regs. are for the USA.


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