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Every day, Something new
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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there

I have a HAM Extra license (but have never really used it for voice, only got it to legally send email over the radio).

I finally have a boat with an ICOM IC-M700Pro which works fine for email via HAM and SAILMAIL. I'm told by previous owner that the radio is unlocked for HAM.

How can I prove/check this? Where can I go to find a list of HAM only (or since I have the HAM frequencies, where can I go to find the SSB only ones as that would also allow me to answer the question) frequencies. I'm assuming there is some overlap.

I figure once i know a HAM ONLY frequency I can simply attempt to transmit and it will either work, or not. If not, I still need to get radio unlocked (which would be my NEXT problem). Just to confirm, I DO have a ham license (AI4QI) and am legal to transmit.

Thanks all in advance
 

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Your ham course study material should have a list of the ham bands; alternately you can find them all over the 'net, but (since stopping here wouldn't be much use to anyone), try one of the nets on 14.300. More info at 14300.net, summary from that page,

"There are three major nets in the Western Hemisphere that operate on 14.300 MHz. From early morning until late evening the frequency is busy with traffiic of one form or another. Begining at 0700 ET daily, The Intercon Net, formally know as The Intercontinental Amatuer Traffic Net, starts out the day. Intercon runs until 1200 ET before handing the frequency over to The Maritime Mobile Service Network. The MMSN, which also runs daily, operates from 1200 ET until 9 PM EST / 10 PM EDT or 0200 UTC. After The MMSN raps up The Pacific Seafarers Net begins operation at 10 PM EST / 11PM EDT or 0300 UTC and runs various lengths of time, depending on traffic load, but usually about 2 hours or less. "

If the radio is unlocked it should be obvious as soon as you key the mic, but you're more than welcome to check in anyway.

Norm
VE2BQS
CFN4213
316006738
 

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Mermaid Hunter
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Hi Maryanne,

The 700pro is easy to unlock if yours isn't already.

Look here for the bandplan for ham radio: http://www.arrl.org/files/file/Regulatory/Band Chart/Hambands_color.pdf Note this is the US band plan and there are some differences in other countries and regions. Look up the IARU regions and refresh yourself.

You are likely to find that the maritime nets on the ham bands are more useful than those on the marine bands (there is no overlap - they are interleaved). See SSB Nets & Frequencies for a list of both.

Holler if we or I can help.

73 es sail fast de dave KO4MI
Dave Skolnick S/V Auspicious
AuspiciousWorks.com
 

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Every day, Something new
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Discussion Starter #7
Wow - Thanks guys - really helpful. I had 2 problems (which now my brain has finally understood)

1) I had the ham bands, but for some reason I thought there was overlap with the ham and SSB bands, so I was not sure if any band I tested was HAM only, and therefore truely testing if the HAM bands were unlocked. I NOW realized that HAM and SSB bands are different and therefore any ham band test if valid

2) My radio a M700pro has dials so I can move to any station (great) and can listen/receive easily. HOWEVER if I want to TX, I MUST program one of the set channels to that band - otherwise my TX fails to TX.. This is a frustrating step, and one that I (without realizing) had sometimes done, and sometimes not so I was getting mixed tests - sometime I could transmit on ham bands, other times not. Eventually I worked out that I must always include this step. Frustrating but it works.

Thanks all for your help... I have successfully confirmed my radio is unlocked (14300kHz, and others) and have successfully transmitted on HAM bands.

Yay for me, and thanks to you all... you Elmers out there are much appreciated.
 

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Sailboat Reboot
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[Rant]

Allow me to be an old curmudgeon. It drives me nuts when people call things by the wrong names. Particularly since they do it since they are ignorant and choose to remain ignorant.

There is no such thing as a "SSB Band." SSB is a mode. In particular it is a mode using a "single side band" with or without a suppressed carrier. AM and FM are modes, as is FSK (frequency shift keying.) There are "Ham Bands" and "Marine Bands." (You will note that I am side stepping the fact that there really are side bands, upper and lower and you can operate the single side band mode in either.) Ham's use both, Marine only uses upper. But in the context that cruisers use the word "SSB Radio" the nomenclature is wrong. The accepted nomenclature is MF/HF radio. You will note that your "SSB Radio" also can send and receive in AM and CW.

Of course we know that continued misuse of words results in the misuse being accepted, consider "quantum leap" aka an "atomic electron transition."

[/Rant]
 

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As a grammatical and technical nitpicker from way back, I'd agree, though in this day and age it's unlikely to see anyone using CW in the marine bands (or the original poster in the Ham bands), and while the MF/HF radio can certainly receive, and possibly transmit, AM it's raison d'etre aboard ship is for MF/HF SSB communications. And all marine VHF radios are FM.

Given that combined SSB/FM radios are scarce and not under consideration here, I'd say that calling MF/HF radios "SSB" and VHF-marine radios "FM" at least isn't going to create any conflicts. I'm all for exact terminology (and have even lectured folks on the distinction between a "DE-9" vs "DB-25" (there's no such thing as a "DB-9")), in this case the mislabeling is at least consistent and not going to generate confusion.

I still warn my radio classes that as a ham I'm as likely to say "HF" when I mean "MF/HF", with apologies in advance for mislabeling the 2 to 3 MHz range.

But I do agree there's no "SSB Band" - the spectrum really doesn't care what we do with it, only the rules do. But even so, there are Bands (plural) on which only SSB is used (ok, with a bit of FSK thrown in), and others which are soley FM (lets not into the nuances of PM vs FM), so even the the expression is irritating, at least it's unambiguous.
 

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An Extra class license that doesn't know how to figure out what frequencies to use?

I am speechless if the person even has a license much less an extra class

De WE4I
 

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Can I ask perhaps a dumb question please.

I have an Icom I think its a 710, can't remember but the question probably doesn't need an exact identity. I bought the radio on E-bay in a brand new condition, still in the original packaging. It looks like this:



From the beginning the dial has been able to be rotated to stop on any frequency you want. I used it on marine bands while on voyages and it works RX and TX just fine on any of them. But it works just fine on any frequency that I dialed up.

Question is: is this radio even legal? I know that the standard Icom 802 only selects marine frequencies. Am I allowed to even have a radio that can select any frequency? My thinking is having them and using them are two different things but maybe I'm wrong.
 

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Mermaid Hunter
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An Extra class license that doesn't know how to figure out what frequencies to use?
Completely analogous to the licensed captains I encounter from time to time who should not be allowed to cross the street by themselves.

I have an Icom I think its a 710, can't remember but the question probably doesn't need an exact identity.
That isn't a 710. It looks like it may be a 718. It is definitely a ham radio.

From the beginning the dial has been able to be rotated to stop on any frequency you want. I used it on marine bands while on voyages and it works RX and TX just fine on any of them. But it works just fine on any frequency that I dialed up.

Question is: is this radio even legal? I know that the standard Icom 802 only selects marine frequencies. Am I allowed to even have a radio that can select any frequency? My thinking is having them and using them are two different things but maybe I'm wrong.
It is a ham radio not certified for use on marine frequencies.

First, in the event of a bona fide emergency you can use anything on any frequency.

Your radio shouldn't be used for normal operation on marine frequencies.

The certification process for marine radios ensures that the transmitted signal meets purity requirements (frequency stability, distortion, harmonic output, and more) over a range of supply voltages that ham radios simply can't be expected to meet.

Will you get caught? Probably not. Might you cause interference to someone else on an adjacent channel that may be passing emergency traffic? Maybe. Are there lots of people out there using inappropriate equipment? Yep.

The easy out is to get your ham radio license and use your radio on the frequencies it is intended for, secure in the knowledge that in an emergency you can use any frequency. Besides, the maritime nets on the ham bands are better. *grin*
 

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Discussion Starter #13
[Rant]

Allow me to be an old curmudgeon. It drives me nuts when people call things by the wrong names. Particularly since they do it since they are ignorant and choose to remain ignorant.

[/Rant]
Wow - that really was a rant. I appreciate the insight.. all except the assumption that "we" choose to remain ignorant was helpful. Thanks (I think)
 

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Sailboat Reboot
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Wow - that really was a rant. I appreciate the insight.. all except the assumption that "we" choose to remain ignorant was helpful. Thanks (I think)
The problem with indiscriminate rants is that they do unintended collateral damage. Were you ignorant about SSB? Perhaps. Perhaps you just went with the cruiser flow. Do you intend to stay ignorant? I would say no, since you asked a question to improve your knowledge in the first place. I was reacting to my life experiences when people say "that's too complicated" or "everybody knows what I mean" and so on.

As an officer and a gentleman by act of Congress let me apologize. It was not my intent to demean you. Please accept my sincere apology.

Fair winds and following seas.
 

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Given that combined SSB/FM radios are scarce and not under consideration here, I'd say that calling MF/HF radios "SSB" and VHF-marine radios "FM" at least isn't going to create any conflicts.
Actually not true. My TS480 (Kenwood) can transmit on AM and FM (in the 6 meter band.) That is becoming more and more common.

It is interesting that most cruisers call their VHF radio a "VHF radio" and their MF/HF radio an "SSB radio". That said, my teaching problems have been when trying to explain to users that there are several modes on their "SSB radio" and that depending upon the circumstances they may need to use more than one. This is true when they want to listen to foreign broadcasts in AM. The USB/LSB swap is particularly troublesome. Anyway, enough of this. :)

Fair winds and following seas.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Well, now and you apologized, and you made me laugh. What more could a girl want? (Please don't answer that! LOL).

To others: I totally acknowledge my lack of understanding (If I thought I understood it, I wouldn't have asked for help).

Hey, SSB has "BAND" in the name, it is bound to be confusing. I passed my HAM license ONLY so I would be able to transmit emails legally aboard the boat to gain valuable weather information and keep in touch with key family members on our progress. I had no intention of using voice, and didn't even have a radio at the time (we were researching for one, which at the time we decided against and went the Sat phone way).

NOW, I have a fully functioning radio aboard current boat, I figured I should use it, and now I have to go back to the books and relearn all I forgot/thought I would never need again.

When I took the tests (and I'm good at taking tests, just not remembering much after the fact), I did what I needed to pass, Including my morse code tests, and I realize this did not make me a HAM in any way - but DID make me legal which is all I wanted. I took the tests before getting a radio as I was about to move into full time cruising and knew that I would lose the opportunity of attending regular classes, etc once I was nomadic (now even getting wifi is sporadic).

I realize this approach to HAM qualifications is appalling to some who have commented, but a tool can have different uses for different needs.

I understand what the legal HAM frequencies are (I have the tables printed out)... what I didn't understand is if there was any overlap with SSB - and I wanted to be sure I was TX on an HAM only frequency. I get it now (or at least I'm getting it).

Thanks for all the help folks (that is what this Sailnet is all about right?).

:)
 

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Mermaid Hunter
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To others: I totally acknowledge my lack of understanding (If I thought I understood it, I wouldn't have asked for help).
I'm sorry you got lambasted a bit. I hope none of my posts contributed to that. My swipe at paper captains may have been unkind.

It's good to ask for help. This community can sometimes do a better job of giving a hand up to those who ask for help.

NOW, I have a fully functioning radio aboard current boat, I figured I should use it, and now I have to go back to the books and relearn all I forgot/thought I would never need again.
Great. There are lots of people with certifications of various kinds who 'learned the test' and find that the test isn't a hurdle after all - it is a means of ensuring you know what you need to know. When looking at answers it is better to know WHY the right answer is right than WHAT the right answer is.

There are plenty of people here, on eham.net, and the SSCA Forum that can and will help. People being what they are you may here some more about being an Extra and asking the questions you do. Ignore those people. We all learn the way and at the pace we do.

With respect to frequency allocations look at http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/45/United_States_Frequency_Allocations_Chart_2003_-_The_Radio_Spectrum.jpg and consider the implications - interleaved allocations, shared allocations, and how much of our lives are dependent on radio. Find the ham allocations, the marine (HF/SSB and VHF) allocations, the air band allocations, GPS, cell phones, sat phones, WiFi, garage door openers, CB, cordless phones, microwave ovens, and remote controls.

Are you US East Coast? Get up in the morning and check into the Waterway Radio Net (7268 kHz LSB) at 0745 and Cruiseheimers (8152 kHz USB) at 0830. West Coast? Check into Pacific Seafarers Net on 14300 kHz (check 14300.net for the schedule).

If I can help look me up on QRZ (qrz.com) and send me an e-mail.

73 es sail fast de dave KO4MI
Dave Skolnick S/V Auspicious
SSCA Board of Directors, Immediate Past President
Seven Seas U
SSCA VE Team leader
... .- .. .-.. .-.. .- ... -
 

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Every day, Something new
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Discussion Starter #19
Peace and tranquillity is restored to the world... Thanks for your thoughtful words, they are appreciated... Hope to see you (or hear you) out there some day. :).

We are currently getting ready for the hopscotch from Panama-Galapagos-Hawaii-Alaska before headed down (slowly) the West coast of the USA - our first time in the Pacific. Life is good.

Thanks for the links to the nets too, we hear good things. Still not ready to dump the Sat phone yet, but so glad to have all these options (and grateful to the folks that host them).
 

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Sailboat Reboot
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...

We are currently getting ready for the hopscotch from Panama-Galapagos-Hawaii-Alaska before headed down (slowly) the West coast of the USA - our first time in the Pacific. Life is good.

---
I would be very interested in your experience in the Galapagos - some recent visitors (Word ARC) had problems. See the $3000 budget thread for details or look for my posts.
 
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