How many monitor VHF 16 while sailing? - Page 3 - SailNet Community
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post #21 of 70 Old 11-18-2011
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Originally Posted by Faster View Post
We listen to 16 as well, usually via cockpit handheld on the rationale that we wouldn't likely to be close enough to help if we can't hear it on the handheld. Occasionally we'll turn on the base if necessary, or if we hear something interesting developing.

We used to 'pick a channel' with our cruising friends to avoid the clutter of 16, but came to realize that listening on, say, 68 or another comm channel we got just as tired of listening to sometimes endless irrelevant conversations between others.

Now we play "you gotta hear this boat name" everyday. Also on 16 the EQ can be quite high when we hear of boaters on the sandbanks (out of danger, of course), out of fuel, simply lost, or simply clueless (eg: Coast Guard: "Vessel calling 'hello', this is......)

One of my major beefs locally with Ch 16 is the power of the USCG stations in Pt Angeles, say, blasting over everything even 60 miles away... do I really need to know about a local issue in Pt Angeles harbour when I'm in central Georgia Strait?? Every 15 minutes?
I have to agree, I get USCG station in Woods Hole MA when I'm in LI Sound. Overkill IMHO, but when your in trouble I guess you want the entire world looking for you.

When I had to hail the USCG while taking on lots of water, I used my cell phone. Why? Because I was controlling the situation, did want the USCG aware of the problem, but DID NOT want Seatow, Towboat US, and every other company calling me on the VHF and coming up alongside trying to sell me a tow or a pump.

The USCG put out a Pan Pan and I had the tow companies bothering me anyway.

Imagine trying to control a leak, keep a clear head, sail your vessel whilst having to reply to Seatow on the VHF and talk to Towboat US when they came up alongside to sell me a membership that would not mean squat since I would be considered a salvage operation.

I know they have their place, but....

Anyway, back on track, I monitor 16 on a hand held for the same reason as Faster.
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post #22 of 70 Old 11-18-2011
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I always monitor 16 and if near the traffic lanes the local TSS channel.
No disrespect intended (I have the highest regard for the job that the USCG does), but a pet peeve of mine is that the USCG seems to only assign people that A. either have a mouth full of marbles or B. tend to get excited and talk WAY too fast while giving the location of an emergency. It's not only frustrating to not be able to figure out if a boat in trouble is close by, but could mean the difference between life and death. They need to take some lessons from the Canadian CG who are absolutely top notch as far as their ability to remain calm and professional during an emergency (we can monitor both here and the difference is like night and day (and it isn't just because I'm about deaf and wear hearing aids, Laurie agrees 100%)). I even contacted USCG in Seattle to try and make a suggestion to improve safety - Ha! - some higher up type practically laughed at me and said "you want the USCG to change the way we respond to an emergency just for you?
Sorry for the hijack, back to the OP's topic.

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post #23 of 70 Old 11-18-2011
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I always monitor 16.

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post #24 of 70 Old 11-18-2011
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It's funny, when my GPS nav screen was wired up by an electrician, he made it so that my cockpit vhf has to be on to power the GPS. At first I thought it as nuissance, but now I appreciate the reminder to turn the radio on. I keep it on 16.

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post #25 of 70 Old 11-19-2011 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainForce View Post
If we are passage-making, in or out of inlets, offshore or out of our home waters, then we are monitoring 16. If we are daysailing in our protected inland waters, then we are not. Take care and joy, Aythya crew
The sinking boat I assisted was half a mile from the entrance to my marina. Seems like boats are less likely to have dingies, EPIRB's, etc. for a day sail, yet the water temp is still in the 50's in the SF Bay.
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post #26 of 70 Old 11-19-2011
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Quote:
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The sinking boat I assisted was half a mile from the entrance to my marina. Seems like boats are less likely to have dingies, EPIRB's, etc. for a day sail, yet the water temp is still in the 50's in the SF Bay.
My rationale is weak, but I am speaking of the warmer water, shallow, slow moving St. Johns River south of Jacksonville, Florida that is three miles wide at the most and a vary calm play place. I will reconsider my habit due to these postings.
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post #27 of 70 Old 11-19-2011
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While I have a remote in the cockpit, when wind is above say 15 kts and we're beating windward, I can't hear a thing on it. I've occasionally caught a securite or pan pan and had to hold it to my ear to really make out any detail.


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post #28 of 70 Old 11-19-2011
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i do!even though theres little boat traffic after labor day in my area,if i'm on the water i do
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post #29 of 70 Old 11-19-2011
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Share a cockpit speaker???

Yes, I monitor Ch 16.

But I often sail with a radio/stereo turned on, and half the time the music on one cockpit speaker blanks out the [mumble-mouthed] VHF caller on the other speaker.

Yes, I know that some expensive VHF radios have a memory/replay function, but I don't wanna go that route.

What would work nicely would be some kind of switch that detected incoming traffic from a VHF and muted the signal from an AM/FM until the VHF again became inactive.

Now, I KNOW it's wrong to rig a single speaker with inputs from two radios; I'm told you'll FRY both.

Anybody know of a straightforward, automatic audio A/B swith made for such a situation? I haven't been able to find one via the usual suspects.

Joe - s/v Assignment, Catalina 320
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post #30 of 70 Old 11-19-2011 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRFerron View Post
In general, any vessel equipped with a VHF marine radiotelephone (whether voluntarily or required to) must maintain a watch on channel 16 (156.800 MHz) whenever the radiotelephone is not being used to communicate.

Source: FCC 47 CFR 80.148, 80.310, NTIA Manual 8.2.29.6.c(2)(e), ITU RR 31.17, 33.18, AP13 25.2
Interesting that it would be required by the FCC, yet I don't find it mentioned in the NAV regs. Boats.com - Rules and Regulations: Navigational Rules. They cover audible signals (horns, bells, etc.) and stress that even if the signals are automated, they must be able to be produced manually. Makes me wonder if they don't want people depending on a communication device that is subject to operation or mechanical glitches for Navigation. However, if the FCC requires it, I would think it would be mentioned.
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