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post #51 of 68 Old 01-17-2011
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Maybe wishful thinking, but if a transceiver has a slide switch to open it up to all channels, does it meet FCC certification?
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post #52 of 68 Old 01-17-2011
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> .... if a transceiver has a slide switch to open it up to all channels, does it meet FCC certification?

The short answer is "No". Any unauthorised modification voids the Certification.

It should be noted however that there are Marine Radios (e.g. Icom M802) whose channels can be "opened" with a simple key combination. They are legal for hams to use (on the ham bands), but strictly speaking, once re-programmed in this way, would no longer be Marine Certified. Presumably they would not have been submitted for Certification with this "hidden" mode enabled.

Last edited by SparkyToo; 01-18-2011 at 04:49 AM.
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post #53 of 68 Old 01-18-2011
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"e short answer is "No". Any unauthorised modification voids the Certification."

Sparky, perhaps you are forgetting that over the years the FCC has granted dual (and multiple) certification to a number of pieces of equipment, allowing them to be legally sold and used in ham plus marine plus other bands?

Icom's dual ham+marine rigs being among the best known, although there's usually something a little less obvious than a slide switch involved, it is often just a secret button sequence or jumper to change.
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post #54 of 68 Old 01-18-2011
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Re: the "slide-switch mod", I think the question refers specifically to the Yaesu FT-757GXII, which has such a switch. This is a ham radio, not a marine radio. As such, it can be modified in any way the user likes, including digging into the circuitry, when used on the ham bands by a duly licensed amateur radio operator.

In ham radio, it's the licensed ham who is responsible for ensuring that his emissions are "clean" and within the alloted spectrum space. Other hams help "police" this, and will not be hesitant at all to tell you if you have a bad signal or if you're operating out of band, splattering, etc.

FCC certification for ham radios isn't the same as for marine radios. It's just for the import and/or sale of commercially marketed equipment. What the user chooses to do with the radio after sale is up to him/her, since the responsibility for proper operation rests with the licensed operator who, by virtue of his/her licensure, is presumed to have enough knowledge and technical knowhow to ensure clean operation. Hams can and do build their own radios, both from kits and from scratch, using their own designs or those of others. This has always been and continues to be perfectly legal.

With similarity to the physician's credo, "first, do no harm" is the ham's credo: "first, cause no harmful interference".

Not so with marine radio, land-mobile, aircraft, military, etc. These radios can only be worked on by a technician with a commercial license (GROL or better), and cannot be modified in any way without voiding the certification.

Bottom line:
the Yaesu slide-switch in a ham radio was a good idea; too bad other ham radio designs didn't incorporate it. The result is the need to hunt for instructions, evaluate their origins, snip diodes, change dip switch settings, reboot the microprocessor and re-enter all stored contents, etc., etc., sometimes in circuits which are impossibly small to deal with, physically.

Why modify a ham radio? Several reasons: to access the new 60 meter channels (5 mHz); access the WARC bands (older ham radios didn't have these); access MARS and CAP frequencies; allow for operation in an extreme emergency on marine bands, etc., etc.

At least that's the theory. Practice, of course, differs depending on circumstances. YMMV :-)

Bill

Last edited by btrayfors; 01-18-2011 at 06:00 PM.
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post #55 of 68 Old 01-18-2011
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Hellosailer,

As Bill pointed out, it's legal for Hams to modify their rigs. Not so for Marine operators. The Marine Certification for the M802 would certainly be voided by the act of "opening" the set.

Note that the Icom User Manual does not mention how to open the rig. It is not intended as a normal function. Clearly it would not have gained Marine Certification in this mode.

Note also that the M802 is NOT certified in Europe and doesn't have the CE approval.

To be legal as a Marine Radio in the "Open" mode, the set would need a higher level of certification (GMDSS/SOLAS) and the operator would need a General/First Class certificate.

Last edited by SparkyToo; 01-18-2011 at 06:22 PM.
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post #56 of 68 Old 01-19-2011
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I do sometimes question what all the regulations are about worldwide.
The idiots of the world without registration or licencing are going to try to talk to fighter pilots or Jumbo jet pilots.
Its just that Icom seem to dominate the market place for marine hf despite the fact that it was probably a Yaesu hf radio that confirmed the sucessful raid on Pearl Harbour!
Sorry but I smell monopolistic practises.
Otherwise why did Yaesu in its early FT 757 make it so easy with a slide swtich to open up the radio? Or in later models jump leads and latterly a simple programme adjustment accessed through the programmimg sequences?
Was it hoping to have its ham radios authorised for marine use.
Likewise its Vertex open chanel tranceivers.
When here in the UK you have to pay 30% more for a marine legal Icom HF than in the US restrictive trading practises at least come to mind.
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post #57 of 68 Old 01-19-2011
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> Its just that Icom seem to dominate the market place for marine hf despite the fact that it was probably a Yaesu hf radio that confirmed the sucessful raid on Pearl Harbour!

?????????????

You do realise that Icom is a Japanese company?
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post #58 of 68 Old 02-11-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SparkyToo View Post
> Its just that Icom seem to dominate the market place for marine hf despite the fact that it was probably a Yaesu hf radio that confirmed the sucessful raid on Pearl Harbour!

?????????????

You do realise that Icom is a Japanese company?
/chuckles

Rick Donaldson, NØNJY

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post #59 of 68 Old 02-11-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SparkyToo View Post
>
You do realise that Icom is a Japanese company?
Only because the US was too shortsighted to take it as a war prize, like the Phillipines or Puerto Rico.
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post #60 of 68 Old 02-11-2011
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I have been looking at getting an HF rig for my boat also, and I have found that the amateurs tend to prefer the amateur rigs and likewise for the marine users for the marine rigs. I have an amateur radio license, but I am currently leaning towards the marine rigs. I found that the marine rigs tend to be smaller (like the amateur portable models), but are focused on having memories and features for the marine user who likes to just have access to particular channels. Amateurs like to surf the bands, so their radios have more features for doing that. Most newer marine radios can sync with your GPS for DSC and other marine features like e-mail, lower power consumption, ease of stowing, and top on my list, water resistance (though some HAM rigs have this too).

As others mentioned you have to have licenses for using either of the HF band plans (marine and amateur). Getting access to an amateur (who likes to tinker with antennas) to help with your antenna to check the SWR and that you have a good ground plane would be beneficial, since on boats that is one of the major problems for getting good propagation (and every boat is different).

Good luck.

KA1PKL
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