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Old 29-05-2019, 23:17   #1
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HAM licence question.


I have a class A UK amateur radio licence from the 1990's, it is now called a "full licence" I believe. It's a G0 (plus three letters) callsign. I moved to Canada in 2001 and never got a Canadian licence. I have not been active in HAM radio since before I left the UK.

My question is: does my UK licence (and UK callsign) count for me to use an SSB radio on a boat that I register and operate from Canada or do I have any hoops to jumps through? Do you even use a HAM callsign when operating a marine SSB or just the vessel identification?

Thanks in advance,

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Old 30-05-2019, 00:29   #2
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Re: HAM licence question.

Amateur radio and HF marine radio are two entirely different things.

Your amateur radio operator license and call sign is not valid for the marine HF bands.

For that you need two things:

1. A station license for the vessel. In most countries dead simple to get. This gives you the call sign, which for marine HF is associated with the vessel, not the operator.

2. An operator license for you. In the U.K., it's a Long Range Certificate. In the U.S., it's the same no test FCC license you use for VHF. In Canada I have no idea, but Google is your friend.

Now that being said, most sailors with HF radio operate on the amateur HF bands as well as marine SSB bands. On the amateur bands, you don't use the vessel call sign, you use your amateur radio call sign, and you need a valid amateur radio license. Whether your UK license is valid in Canada, I have no idea. U.K. is in CEPT, so probably it is, if it's in date, and if there is no requirement to get a Canadian license due to your residency. Again, Google is your friend. I have an U.S. Extra Class license which is reciprocally valid in CEPT countries (the U.S. is not in CEPT), but there are certain conditions. On my boat, which is UK flagged, I operate "/MM" -- maritime mobile.

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Old 30-05-2019, 01:46   #3
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Re: HAM licence question.

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Gary.

You will not require a licence if you meet both of the following criteria:
1. the vessel is not operated in the sovereign waters of a country other than Canada.
2. the radio equipment on board the vessel is only capable of operating on frequencies that are allocated for maritime mobile communications or marine radio navigation. You can verify whether the frequencies you use are in the maritime mobile band by referring to Regulation by Reference RBR-2.

If the frequencies used on SSB are in the maritime mobile band, no licence will be required. If outside this band, a licence will be required. You can verify whether the frequencies you use are in the maritime mobile band by referring to RBR-2.

If your radio operates on frequencies outside the maritime mobile band, you do require a radio licence. You can contact your local Industry Canada office for more information RIC-66.

Industry Canada will no longer be issuing radio licences for ships or vessels which meet the exemption criteria; therefore a call sign will no longer be assigned to these stations. In accordance with the technical requirements for the operation of mobile stations in the maritime service as described in RBR-2, an exempted ship station must identify by using the name of the ship (the operator may include additional words or characters, along with the name of the ship).

The Radio Operator Certificate is still a requirement for anyone who may be operating the maritime radio equipment, regardless of whether a radio licence is required. Candidates for the Radio Operator Certificate must successfully complete an examination. Courses and exams are given by the Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons. You can contact them via their web site: ☞ Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons - Escadrilles canadiennes de plaisance

RBR-2 ☞

RIC-66 ☞
Gord May
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Old 30-05-2019, 14:15   #4
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Re: HAM licence question.

Thank you Dockhead and GordMay for those very informative answers, I think you've answered my question!

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