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View Poll Results: Your HF usage in the past year
I sail offshore and use HF/SSB as my primary means of over-the-horizon, two-way communications 18 23.38%
I sail offshore and use satellite as my primary means but find two-way HF/SSB useful also 17 22.08%
I sail offshore and use satellite as my only means of two-way over-the-horizon comms 16 20.78%
I am a coastal cruiser and find two-way HF/SSB useful 10 12.99%
I use RECEIVE ONLY HF/SSB for weather, time, or news and don't have or don't use transmit capability 11 14.29%
VHF, cellular, and EPIRB are all I need 15 19.48%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 77. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 21-11-2022, 23:35   #61
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

I was beginning to think I was the last person on the planet using Sailmail. It seems I am not.

However having seen how two friends are using I-Go and Predictwind on ocean passages I have placed an order with Santa.

I shall be keeping and using my HF kit.

So I-Go is slow. Its not as if I have much else to do with my day when on passage.
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Old 22-11-2022, 01:03   #62
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

It seems that most on this thread would like to use the HF radio but are finding it harder to justify it. There is no point is doing that, just enjoy HF as a hobby.

When I was on the US West Coast, I used HF mostly to send and receive emails via Winlink using a Pactor III modem. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it was too much effort. I never had anything critical go over it. Then I started monitoring GMDSS distress test traffic (using a nifty map called DX Atlas, that shows you the originating ship and receiving coastal station on a map). It was really cool to know where the ships are. I did a couple of test calls myself to make myself feel good. The nets are reassuring but get boring after 15 minutes.

Now, in the Black Sea, the only usage for HF is to monitor HF traffic from the various entities involved in the Ukraine conflict. There is lots of activity but it is all encrypted and unintelligible to me. There are lots of hams who are happy to talk to you and love to ask questions about equipment, etc.

When something needs to be done for real, I always use the InReach. It is short messages only but you get immediate feedback whether it is from loved ones, weather, quick question on the engines... friends are always there for you. Quick, easy, low power.

If in an emergency, I could probably send an HF distress but then what, you still need to talk to them over the radio and organize everything which could be a challenge, while fixing whatever is broken. Much easier to send a message to a friend on shore and they can organize the rescue and everything. All of the recent actual rescues I know of started with InReach/Go/Iridium call to a friend.

I believe for HF to be more useful, we need more signaling/messaging apps that integrate seamlessly with the HF rig. One such app is ION2G for ALE messaging. All the technology is there but the community is very small and development is slow.
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Old 22-11-2022, 05:06   #63
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

We have an SSB.
Offshore we use it 2 to three times a day, at anchor maybe 2-3 times a week.

We also subscribe to sailmail, but only use it offshore. I hadn't considered sailmail usage, so you can say 4-5 times a day offshore.

Cheers.
Paul.
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Old 24-11-2022, 06:59   #64
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

I actually just removed mine and sold it. I brought it over from my last boat where I used it only a handful of times. Decided it was time to get realistic and removed it. If you are into radios then it's a different calculus, but I'm not. I just want reliable communications, and SSB is off the charts fussy and complicated compared to modern coms.
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Old 24-11-2022, 12:16   #65
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tanglewood View Post
I actually just removed mine and sold it. I brought it over from my last boat where I used it only a handful of times. Decided it was time to get realistic and removed it. If you are into radios then it's a different calculus, but I'm not. I just want reliable communications, and SSB is off the charts fussy and complicated compared to modern coms.
Yep, I find the same thing with my fire extinguishers, dust collectors cluttering up the bulkheads and require servicing all the time, and am considering getting rid of them.

,.
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Old 24-11-2022, 13:34   #66
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

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Yep, I find the same thing with my fire extinguishers, dust collectors cluttering up the bulkheads and require servicing all the time, and am considering getting rid of them.

,.
Interesting what would replace your fire extinguishers with?
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Old 24-11-2022, 13:55   #67
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

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Interesting what would replace your fire extinguishers with?


I hear ADT is a good service.
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Old 24-11-2022, 14:10   #68
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

I completed my circumnavigation this year. I used my SSB very rarely. I had it for emergencies and as a backup to my Iridium Go, but wasn't confident it would work when I needed it to. It usually did, but was always more difficult and more fussy than Satellite.
Instead of participating in nets, I sent a daily email to friends on other boats, and they did the same. So, I was still able to keep up and share stories, and it didn't matter where in the world we were, or what time it was.
The most use it got was when I was in a group of boats and others did not have Satellite, then I would give weather reports to the group. I will probably get rid of it, and "next time around" have only Satellite.
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Old 24-11-2022, 14:56   #69
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

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Interesting... I've wondered about installing an SSB. Doesn't seem worth the cost and bother to me, but maybe I'm wrong.

Personally, I'd like to see the results to a poll that asks: IF you sail offshore, do you have an HF (SSB) radio?

Taking this one step further would be the question, would you buy an HF radio if planning to go offshore? There was a thread along this line and the conclusion I drew was a resounding “no”
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Old 24-11-2022, 15:07   #70
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

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Taking this one step further would be the question, would you buy an HF radio if planning to go offshore? There was a thread along this line and the conclusion I drew was a resounding “no”
Feel like marine HF is becoming like old-school celestial nav. It's still practised by... old-schoolers, but most of the world has moved on.

BTW, I still have a sextant, and have done some celestial nav., so maybe I should get an SSB .
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Old 24-11-2022, 16:37   #71
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

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Originally Posted by svRaison d Etre View Post
Interesting what would replace your fire extinguishers with?
There isn't an emoticon for sarcasm.

Being an old neanderthal I'd probably get a fire bucket and use it for washing dishes and a toilet (Tristan Jones said he had two buckets and it was a good idea to color code them)
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Old 24-11-2022, 16:44   #72
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Re: It's 2022. What have you used your HF (SSB) for lately?

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Originally Posted by svRaison d Etre View Post
Interesting what would replace your fire extinguishers with?
There isn't an emoticon for sarcasm.

Being an old neanderthal I'd probably get a fire bucket and use it for washing dishes and a toilet (Tristan Jones said he had two buckets and it was a good idea to color code them)
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