So...who is actually using DSC to make calls?

Guess Who"

  • Better watch Out

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  • You have to be blind Freede not to know Who"

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bluedragon

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I've had a DSC set for four years, done the course, got the certificate and only used the facility ONCE! Marinas, port control, etc, don't seem to have MMSI numbers (correct me if I'm wrong), and in my part of the world everyone seems to call the CG on Ch16. If I had another yacht to talk to (and I knew they had DSC and their MMSI), I guess I would use it. Just curious how many actually do use DSC for routine calls...and to whom?
 

Richard10002

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How often are you anywhere near a boat whose MMSI you know?

In my case, never knowingly.

Channel 16 then one of the ship to ship channels does me fine.

But like the idea of pressing a button for 5 seconds, and having my Mayday sent for me, particularly if the flames were licking my a*se /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif (not funny really)
 

TiggerToo

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Well,
I don't usually sit there making calls while I sail. I only really use the radio as a receiver for CG messages, a safety instrument in case of need, and a cheap way of contacting marinas the few times I plan to visit.

The ONE exception that I have actually tried to call someone has been with DSC: Carol Wildbird, of fame. We exchanged DSC numbers on here and promised to try out the kit. To be honest it is very convenient: you just press the button and then carry one doing wht you are doing until you get a reply. It was great, actually.

I imagine that DSC calling a ship approaching whose number you get with AIS may well bea real help. But have never had to do it... because I don't have a working AIS yet /forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif.
 

Evadne

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I bought a non-DSC set when the writing was on the wall for them many years ago, so although I've got the ticket I've never made a DSC call yet.
 

CPD

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Lighting the touch paper ...................

It's a bit like Colregs ......... unless we all know them and use them properly, then they won't get used ...........

..... now running ....... /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif
 

asteven221

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In all the years I have had a DSC VHF I have never once made a DSC call. Indeed I have only heard it once making any DSC type alerts. It's a waste of time IMHO for general communications, but a great idea for the distress when linked to GPS. As an aside to this, it seems (at least in the Clyde area) the amount of radio traffic is almost zero these days. The only people I seems to hear at weekends are people asking for radio checks. I think mobile phones have taken over for the vast majority of people wanting to speak with their pals.
 

DJE

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Well I know the MMSI numbers of several other boats in our club one of whom has a particularly annoying DSC alarm. One day I'm going to call him just as he's going for a spinaker drop!
 

MarkJohnson12345

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Hi,

Yes I use the facility fairly regularly.

Obviously you have to know the chum you are calling. Does save a lot of calling on Ch 16.

Also use it to call the Coast Guard, we have all now learned how to use it.

Its OK, has small calling advantages, but as yet untried, but assume the emergency calling will be a great advantage.

Just hope I never have to push that button.

Technology advances, are you able to suggest a better system??

Still with the H27?

Regards

Mj
 

Dann

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I have been on a number of big ships' bridges and always ask if they use DSC to call anyone. The answer has been invariably no or rarely.

It is a pity that when the spec for DSC was being formulated that it didn't include the ATIS spec used in European inland waters, which broadcasts identification every time the transmit button is pressed; thus cutting out those annoying unidentifiable calls that clog ch16 etc.
 

bluedragon

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Hi Mark...yeh, still got our H27. In Milford now.

I agree that for emergency use it's clearly worth having. I'm just a bit disappointed that nobody I know seems to use the DSC for regular calling, because in principle it's a good idea. I'll certainly try it again this year when the CG is busy on bank holiday weekends, etc, but otherwise...???
 

johnalison

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It is very sad to read about all these folk who seem to have no friends. While I don't like the idea (or the practise) of using VHF for idle chatter, we often seem to need to call our club-mates to arrange meeting up and DSC is just a lot easier than calling on Ch 16 and has the great advantage that you can use it even when there is a seelonce in operation.
 

Malcb

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I find it very useful when I'm on club cruises as I don't need to use Ch16 to make contact.

I've also used the 'track buddy' facility, so that you can see where someone is, or at least their Lat & Lon. If my chart plotter was newer then I could have seen them on the chart plotter.
 
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Chrusty1

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Interesting is it not that 75% on your poll say they never use it, me included. I can tell you this, there is a roaring trade in non DSC VHF sets.......I wonder why??? /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif Well I think I know why, but best not go there.
 

Eygthene

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We don't call the coastguard normally and apart from listening for weather updates, we use ch 16 to first contact others on club cruises in company when checking up on stragglers/sprinters in the party (hardly any have DSC). Consequently haven't used DSC in 5 years.

During a frightening close quarters incident with a very fast ferry (identified on AIS) it did not seem the time to get out the manual and relearn how to make a DSC call, so used ch 16 instead to immediate effect.

Near N Brittany coast, frequent French coastguard DSC alerts can be very frustrating.
 
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Chrusty1

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[ QUOTE ]
I find i'm inclined to switch the whole thing off cos of the ruddy alarm sounding for irrelevant messages.. maybe I'd be safer with a non-dsc set???

[/ QUOTE ]

I couldn't make a judgement about that, just have a think about what kind of sailing you do, and ask yourself, and others if a bit inexperienced, whether DSC is appropriate or neccessary for you.

What I am saying, is that if you just daysail in an estuary or very local and fairly sheltered waters, you might as just as well have a hand held, and some flares. Ooops Fred Drift looming! /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif
 
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