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New guy on the ocean worries / horrible radio comms!?!?!?

Jul 27, 2011
4,529
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
You have GOT to come to the Vancouver area in British Columbia if you want to see and listen to idiots on the water.
The times I chartered there, probably two month’s worth, I haven’t noticed it any worse than southwestern FL or southern California. I have noticed when approaching a fuel dock and a boat is there already it’s at one end or the other-not smack in the middle as I typically see around here:twisted:. So far, I’ve found the Canadian (BC) boating community a gracious one, by and large.
 
Jan 4, 2006
3,820
Hunter 310 West Vancouver, B.C.
"You know, Mrs. buckman, you need a license to buy a dog. You need a license to drive a car. Hell, you even need a license to catch a fish. But they'll let anybody talk on the VHF."
........................................ and buy a boat, put the key in the ignition, and go out and kill people.
 
Nov 22, 2011
959
Ericson 26-2 San Pedro, CA
Perhaps they have a hand held and can hear the CG
How would that possibly work? If they have their mike keyed down on channel 16--which is what the Coast Guard is complaining about--then their handheld would be overwhelmed by their base station transmission.

Really, it makes no sense. My only point is that it is NOT simply recreational boaters that do this. The Coast Guard (out here) does it *frequently*.
 
Nov 22, 2011
959
Ericson 26-2 San Pedro, CA
Both CGs in the US and Canada seem to be guilty of this. However I believe it is intended to be a reminder to those that can receive (ie all those other than the culprit with the open mic) to be responsible with regard to an open mic in the future.
I could see the value in that. However, it's clear from the cases I have heard the the CG is addressing the person with the open mike and not broadcasting it as a caution to others. Specifically, they are asking the person with the open mike to check his equipment. :huh:
 
Feb 6, 1998
11,436
Canadian Sailcraft 36T Casco Bay, ME
I know it helped Winnipesaukee although I can't quote the statistics, but I remember when I was younger, a death or 3 every summer was normal from drunk boating to not knowing how to navigate. I even remember right before that law took effect a mother on one jet ski, hitting and killing her son on another jet ski just from being inexperienced. Also the rate that boats hit and sank on the witches (a rocky submerged island) also reduced, due to them having to learn how to read a chart.
That law on Winny was sparked by the death of one of my very good friends fathers. The son of a wealthy marina owner ran smack over their boat, in the dark & totally drunk. The defense tried to claim his nav lights were not on, but they were, and forensics proved it. The drunk scum bag still walked away with a slap on the wrist and Kim’s dad is stll gone, while he walks free... You could not pay me to swim in that lake let alone boat on it. All my friends and family who used own property on that lake now refer to it as Lake Winnepachusetts...
 
May 17, 2004
3,420
Beneteau Oceanis 37 LE Havre de Grace
I could see the value in that. However, it's clear from the cases I have heard the the CG is addressing the person with the open mike and not broadcasting it as a caution to others. Specifically, they are asking the person with the open mike to check his equipment. :huh:
Same on the Chesapeake. Never made much sense to me either. Once in a while someone else jumps on and points that out to the CG. Never heard them answer that.
 
Nov 22, 2011
959
Ericson 26-2 San Pedro, CA
Until about a decade ago, maybe two:doh:, you needed a “station license” and call letters to legally operate a VHF radio in the USA.
I'm pretty sure that can't be right. I think it was a lot longer ago than that since a station license was a requirement, but I cannot recall any details.
 
Jul 27, 2011
4,529
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
I'm pretty sure that can't be right. I think it was a lot longer ago than that since a station license was a requirement, but I cannot recall any details.
I think now in the latter 1990’s. The Pearson 30 we bought in 1993 needed a station license with call letters, which we had. The boat we have now purchased in 2004 did not. Some where in there.
 
Nov 22, 2011
959
Ericson 26-2 San Pedro, CA
I think in the 1990’s. The Pearson 30 we bought in 1993 needed a station license. The one we have now purchased in 2004 did not. Some where in there.
That sounds more like it. You had said "about a decade ago," but when I bought a boat in 1997, after having not owned one for quite a while, I know I didn't need a licence at that time.
 
Feb 26, 2004
21,893
Catalina 34 224 Maple Bay, BC, Canada
I could see the value in that. However, it's clear from the cases I have heard the the CG is addressing the person with the open mike and not broadcasting it as a caution to others. Specifically, they are asking the person with the open mike to check his equipment. :huh:
Just the opposite. Please, think about it and what Hello Below said in the post you quoted.

What the CG is telling YOU, not the a$$hat with the keyed mic, is that YOU may NOT BE RECEIVING potentially important traffic (or even someone's request to hail YOU) on that channel because some dumbo keyed his mic and is cutting off traffic TO you, not to him.

That's why my earlier post said the CG said open mic near...

Of course dumbo can't hear it.
 
Nov 22, 2011
959
Ericson 26-2 San Pedro, CA
Just the opposite. Please, think about it and what Hello Below said in the post you quoted.

What the CG is telling YOU, not the a$$hat with the keyed mic, is that YOU may NOT BE RECEIVING potentially important traffic (or even someone's request to hail YOU) on that channel because some dumbo keyed his mic and is cutting off traffic TO you, not to him.

That's why my earlier post said the CG said open mic near...

Of course dumbo can't hear it.
Re-read what I said. The CG is *not* making a general broadcast to everyone else--as they well could do if they wanted to--but specifically is calling to the person with the open mike "by name," as it were. ("To the vessel with the open mike, please check your equipment....") And I hear such broadcasts (out here) with some regularity. It simply makes no sense, granting, as you say, that dumbo indeed can't hear it.
 
Jul 27, 2011
4,529
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
…. that dumbo indeed can't hear it.
Maybe not. But I suppose I hear much of the same traffic as you, including that from the CG about open mics. I have noticed the situation does not persist long after the CG hails although there might be two hails. Could be “self discovery”; could be that dumbo does hear and closes.
 

BarryL

.
May 21, 2004
827
Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 409 Mt. Sinai, NY
Hey,

In all honesty, when I out for a day sail, I leave my radio off. Otherwise I just get annoyed with the radio checks, sea tow calls, coast guard broadcasts from great south bay (I am in the Long Island sound, on the OTHER side of Long Island from great south bay), and other nonsense.

If I'm going somewhere I will monitor 16. On race night I have the VHF set to appropriate channel.

What really annoys me is when I arrive at a marina, hail them on the channel THEY publish, and no one answers me. Or, when they do, and I tell them I have a reservation and I'm looking for a slip assignment, seem to have no idea what do. It's not that hard. Just tell me what slip, what side to prepare lines and fenders (bow in or stern in), and anything else important, like the dock is the one next to the fuel dock, etc.

Barry
 
Jul 27, 2011
4,529
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
A couple of months ago I was participating in a Wednesday night race. The race had three classes starting with rolling starts. The race committee was using channel 68. There was other traffic on the channel as normal on the Chesapeake Bay in the summer. As the second class sequence began, someone came on and said, “Take your race talk to another channel!” Not wise. The Principal Race Officer was retired Navy (SWO) and he laid into the complainer about the allowed use of radio channels. No reply heard.
The VHF channel code I have (which is an old one) lists Ch 68 as recreational (non-commercial) “ship-to-shore” whereas Chs 71 & 72 are recreational “ship-to-ship” (intership). If the RC is ashore, Ch 68 would be the proper channel according to that. If anchored, then Ch 71 or 72. But I hear a lot of intership traffic on Ch 68, as do we all.

Yacht club cruise-outs usually cite Ch 68 as the “contact channel.” Should be Ch 71 or 72. It’s very rare to encounter someone who practices that protocol. I suspect we might “need” a dedicated recreational ship-to-shore channel to hail and talk to marinas. The best set-up for cruises is to have everyone on DSC that switches to Ch 72 as the working channel (if you want to follow that code). So few boaters know, or care to learn, about DSC. Too lazy to punch in, and/or to acquire, an MMSI number from what I’ve seen.
 
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Jan 7, 2011
2,817
Oday 322 East Chicago, IN
my pet peeve:
In my sailing grounds (Lake Michigan around Chicago), Channel 16 is DOMINATED by commercial traffic calling for bridge lifts, security calls announcing in-coming and out-bound commercial traffic, and all other sorts of commercial communication. CG will make announcements now and then, but DO Not request a radio check on 16 as CG will let you know they don’t want you using channel 16 (but no one acknowledges a call on Channel 9).

The barrage of commercial communication is deafening, but if you want to know what the CG is saying, you need to listen to it.

Greg
 
Feb 26, 2004
21,893
Catalina 34 224 Maple Bay, BC, Canada
Re-read what I said. The CG is *not* making a general broadcast to everyone else--as they well could do if they wanted to--but specifically is calling to the person with the open mike "by name," as it were. ("To the vessel with the open mike, please check your equipment....") And I hear such broadcasts (out here) with some regularity. It simply makes no sense, granting, as you say, that dumbo indeed can't hear it.
Thx for the clarification, Alan. I did go back and read it. And you're right. In my case, what the CCG said was "There is an open mic near..." They did not name a vessel. I have never heard of a CG hail like that where they did so. Not saying they don't, of course, just that in 38 years of sailing, I have never heard one (SF Bay to 2016, now here). Honest question: how would they know?