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  1. #111
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    South Oxfordshire, Gosport and Wellington New Zealand.
    Posts
    8,108

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    Quote Originally Posted by Daydream believer View Post
    I can understand the CG calling ships for vessel reports because that is a commercial use & probably necessary.
    However, I agree with you that the French use of the DSC alert is a real pain especially, as you say, when one is trying to enter Ramsgate or the like. I also wonder why they often start some non urgent announcements with a Pan Pan.
    Perhaps it is because they are distressed that we do not give a rats a.. what they want to prattle on about.

    As we are about to come alongside or enter a tricky harbour, First Mate-who is always on the helm while I look after fenders and lines-switches to another channel so she can concentrate.

    When we enter Portsmouth Harbour we have Solent CG and QHM on dual watch, so its very busy without any DSC alerts. She finds it best if they are off!

    Totally agree with Davidjackson re Irish waters. Anywhere west of lands end is very quiet by comparison to the English side of the Channel.

  2. #112
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    where democracy needs no guns
    Posts
    15,722

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    Quote Originally Posted by bobgarrett View Post
    I had thought that those doing radio checks in the Solent were about to undertake long passages from say Gosport to Cowes. Yet sitting in Cherbourg I have heard two boats which had just left call Solent Coastguard for a radio check! Understandably they got no reply but they did not return thinking their radio was dead, so why did they bother!
    When we were doing regular milk runs we often called in from outside Cherbourg to report or cancel a passage report as it was a very useful radio check at long range without specifically saying so publicly. Most times were successful but if there was a lot of local traffic on the UK side understandably a long range call could easily be missed. If unable to report safe arrival we called CROSSMA Joburg who would pass our info on (often via VHF)
    Sermons from my pulpit are with tongue firmly in cheek and without any warranty!

  3. #113
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Surrey
    Posts
    8,542

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    Quote Originally Posted by rotrax View Post
    I do, and the NCI people seem to appreciate the contact.
    Gosport NCI - Call us on Ch 65 for a radio check if passing.

  4. #114
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Bristol Channel
    Posts
    855

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    It does seem infuriating. Having made a ferry run past Solent to get my newer boat nearer home I was astonished at the number of radio checks. if I can hear a good signal then unless my transmit button has failed (which I can test by calling up my handheld from main set) then my radio will be fine. Similarly if I hear nothing and see nothing on AIS for many hours my aerial connection might be rubbish and I need a check. And as for folks jabbering on channel 16 when they should switch to other channels !!!

    thank god its quitter and more sane down the west Country
    A boat is for going places

  5. #115
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Location
    Aberaeron
    Posts
    1,684

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    In 50. years of sailing I have only called up C.G. for radio checks 6 times, each time has been after fitting new radio, aerial or both. Otherwise at the start of the season I listen out for tha C.G. weather report which confirms clear receiving. A quick call to our harbourmaster confirms transmission. After this I can always test transmission and receive with my h/held.

  6. #116
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Chichester
    Posts
    711

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    The last two summers we've been glad to get across the Channel away from the tedious Solent radio checks. Last winter I upraded to a Metz aerial and we've had replies to radio check requests from Solent Coastguard all along the North Britanny Coast. Thanks a bunch Salty John ...

  7. #117
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Atlantic
    Posts
    20,856

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    The sooner we get back to proper signalling with semaphore flags the better I cant be doing with all this new fangled noisy nonsense you think people would know better than to disturb my peace and quiet hooligans the lot of them. Bah.

  8. #118
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Bristol Channel
    Posts
    855

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    Quote Originally Posted by capnsensible View Post
    The sooner we get back to proper signalling with semaphore flags the better I cant be doing with all this new fangled noisy nonsense you think people would know better than to disturb my peace and quiet hooligans the lot of them. Bah.
    Many are not following approved protocol. Pointless checks to CG even when CG are incident working (and why not to ch 65?). Endless chatter on Ch16 when users should switch to private channel. Its so bad that if we are coming into mooring, anchorage or harbour on Southcoast, the Navigator turns off radio so she can hear my comments on closing distances etc
    A boat is for going places

  9. #119
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Emsworth Hants
    Posts
    12,519

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    I used check our VHF on handheld, with an SSB is you can only check it by calling a coastguard.

  10. #120
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Suffolk
    Posts
    5,161

    Default Re: An infuriating national obsession- radio checks

    I have very rarely asked for a radio check, however a radio can fail in odd ways. We were going from Harwich to Chatham a few years ago. I could hear Harwich VTS clearly on Ch71 as we passed down river, once clear of their patch I switched to Ch16. It seemed remarkably quiet, but it was early in the morning, however after we missed the Inshore waters broadcast twice I began to wonder if we had a problem. I could receive Medway VTS OK and on arrival at Chatham Ch 80 worked both ways. I decide that a radio check was in order. I tried calling on Ch16 and received no reply, then tried a DSC call to Thames CG, still no reply. I finally called them on my mobile and they confirmed that they had received both my calls and replied, but clearly I had not received anything on Ch16.
    I spoke to Standard Horizon and they said it was possible for one or more channels to fail in this way and would I send in the radio, this I did in due course and they confirmed there was a fault, but I had decided to get a new radio fitted in Chatham as we were on our way to London and I was unhappy not have a fully functioning VHF.

    This could mean that one should check send and receive on every Channel you are likely to need on every trip , but I continue to expect that it will work unless I have any reason to believe otherwise. I do have a H/H as a backup.

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