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Thread: VHF call sign

  1. #1

    Default VHF call sign

    Hey does anybody know how one goes about getting a call sign? Do you have to have a liscence? If so how does one go about getting one. We are new to this, and any info would be greatly appriciated. Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    Member Waldo2382's Avatar
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    Default The FCC

    http://www.fcc.gov/licensing.html

    The FCC, the Federal Communications Commission, is in charge of licensing stations and people. The website above should help you out. I believe the class and test you would want to take for only a VHF radio is the Element 3 class. I take the Element 9 class (which is a lot more common now) however it covers more than just a VHF-DSC radio, it covers the whole GMDSS system, Global Marine Distress Safety System, and covers VHF, MF-HF, and Inmarsat. This is a 70 hour class. For the VHF radio, I forgot on how long that class is, since I took at school and they milked it out for a whole semester. I don't know of anywhere up here in Alaska to take it, but there are places in Seattle, San Francisco, and San Diego on the West Coast. I hope this helps a little bit.

  3. #3
    Member akfun's Avatar
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    Default fcc marine radio

    try this site alot of info http://www.fish4fun.com/vhf_radio.htm

  4. #4
    Member akfun's Avatar
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    Default call sign

    ote: The 1996 telecommunications act states that "voluntary" (recreational) vessels need not have a ship station license in order to use a VHF radio.
    my father inlaws boat has call sign and lic. number but it is a commercial 6 pack boat...its required. as for my boat you can use your boat name no license is required. there is a correct usage for the vhf radio and it is monitored by the coast guard. so watch your manners, and keep it on 16 to monitor. when hailing someone and they respond do not forget to change channels. i'm sure that you will forget but everyone does from time to time. have fun on the water and hope this helped. jeff


    p.s. hope your boat name isn't "its all my fault"

  5. #5

    Default Hey thanks

    Waldo and AKfun, thanks, I just love this forum. Folks on here have helped me out a couple of times now! Okay, I am just a recreational user so I just use my boat name because of the '96 act. I wouldn't mind getting a book about the use, but I really don't want to take a class. I can buy the book for the price of the gas and I am literate! haha. Just had trouble finding the right web site. So thanks! The Acrtic Pearl is just about ready for the water, was thinkin' of callin' her the "Oh, I forgot"
    I think we will get a hand held VHF to use too, as some of the threads duscussed how they are nice to have along incase you lose your power. Or for the emergency bag. WE have done mostly rivers and a few charter trips so doing it ourselves has been a learning experience. Can't wait to explore the PWS. Any other pointers?

  6. #6

    Smile

    bljames,
    The Coast guard class on seamanship covers lots of radio stuff, from proper communication when hailing someone, or calling for help, to stories that make you "think". Holding the mike button on acidentally while you argue with the wife on channel 16 is a classic!

  7. #7

    Default Classic

    http://www.boatingcertificate.com/Al...ymaterial.aspx

    I am the wife! hahahahah! I found this web site says it is Coast guard approved so I am going through it. The radio is pretty basic and we won't be using it much unless we are in trouble. Well at this point anyway. The panpan and mayday is pretty simple to do and I will keep some notes on board for easy reference. Plus this site is teaching me lots of navigational aids etc., and signals. Again will probably keep an easy reference of them on board too. If I choose to I can take the final test and get the certificate but probably won't since I don't have to. My man is not new to the water or boating, just the big blue. And we are both excited to get on the water, but are taking the proper precautions now. Lots of reading and learning to read charts and plot courses as well as learning our new Loran-C equipment. The imformation I was coming up all pretty much said we had to have the call sign and it is nice to know that isn't the case. Just one more hoop we don't have to jump through. But thanks I will remind Dennis that we really don't want to "air" our personals! Haha! Besides we never fight!

  8. #8
    Member greythorn3's Avatar
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    Default

    my vhf handle is "crazylegs" cb one too

    Ray
    Semper Fi!

  9. #9
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default Either

    I use either the vessel ID or the vessel name. I depends on whom I am calling. Friends it is Mariah, they all know my vessel name. If it is official, a boat in distress or something, I may use the vessel numbers. But the Coast Guard here usually knows me anyways.

    I also keep my vessel ID written down with a marker on the windshield frame so if I am hurrying and suffering from CRS, they are handy.

    If the Coast Guard is hailing you, it will probably be something like: Silver and green pleasure craft off of Potato Point, this is the Coast Guard cutter Mustang, please pull over for a boat inspection.

    Vietnam - June 70 - Feb. 72
    Cancer from Agent Orange - Aug. 25th 2012
    Cancer Survivor - Dec. 14th 2012

  10. #10
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    Default Trojan!

    I use the call sign trojan, because my boat is RIBbed for more pleasure.. My brothers is the wet dream.. Upon thinking about it, were one warped family.. HA!! Safe boating this year everyone, the summer will be upon us soon..

    Chris

  11. #11

    Default

    So you don't always just use the boats name? You just pick some other handle like on a CB radio? Took us forever to name the boat It could take quite some time to pick handles!

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    Default

    My boat has no name. The guy I bought it from didn't want to name it because he thought it might jinx it. So far I'm following suit. His name on the VHF was Bloodlust - always spilled some kind of blood when he took it out. On VHS I call it Angry Beaver after my ex-wife .

  13. #13

    Default

    So am I to understand you don't HAVE to name your boat? I thought you had to for identification purposes.

  14. #14
    Member akfun's Avatar
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    Default

    no you do not have to name recreational boats. you do how ever have to have your registration number on it and know it. coast guard and troopers will use it when approaching your boat for safety purposes. troopers stopped me 2 times last year. they do safety checks, which i am glad to see and know that they are around if someone needs them.

  15. #15

    Default

    Ah thanks man! It sucks not knowing all this stuff but is fun learning. There are so many different rules for Rec and Charter boats. I get to reading and think I am getting Rec info and it isn't. So Thanks. WE have a name in mind but really didn't wanna goober up the hull!
    Are you saying we need to memorize the number? WE planned on having it next to the radio.

  16. #16
    Member akfun's Avatar
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    Default

    i stuck my # on a piece of scotch tape and stuck it on the lower windshield. used a sharpie. does not clutter up anything and easy to remove. but you should know it because the troopers will use it when approaching your boat, atleast the did when stopping me to do a safety check. first time i was not paying attention and got a lecture which was fine but it did make a point. oh one more thought there is alot of info in a west marine catalogue, also pick up the pamphlets at fish and game they are free and will let you know all you need to know. i think deweys has them also. jeff

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