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 Post subject: marine band???? and shortwave
PostPosted: Feb Thu 11, 2010 6:52 am 
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Joined: Dec Tue 08, 2009 6:03 am
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i have a very nice itt transistor radio with am and marine band. it has a long antenna but i hear nothing on marine band. does marine band ever work, does anyone ever use it? does the shortwave on those old small transistor radios ever work? im thinking about buying one and im under the assumption the shortwave wont work.


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PostPosted: Feb Thu 11, 2010 10:23 am 
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Location: SE USA
Hi,
The " old" marine band is pretty much a wasteland nowadays. I'm referring to those transistor sets that had a so-called marine band from about 2 to 4 Mcs. In their day there was a lot of marine activity if you lived near the coast but that band has been abandoned since then.

There's still a few spots where you may hear signals. Most notably around 3.2 Mcs where there are a couple of SW broadcast stations. Nighttime only, of course.

The small transistor sets that have some shortwave coverage still tend to work quite well. If it tunes the bands like 6, 7, 9 Mc/s you should be able to hear plenty of international stations at night.

There's some play on words in the descriptions sometimes - they may call the old marine band as shortwave, for instance. Just check the actual frequency coverage as noted above to be sure.


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PostPosted: Feb Thu 11, 2010 1:56 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Location: Utica, NY 13502 (USA)
There is a US time signal at 2.5 mHz (WWV) and a Canadian time signal (CHU) at 3.33 mHz. If the radio goes as high as 4.0 mHz, you can hear AM ham transmissions at about 3.885 mHz, although the AM guys are beginning to use other frequencies in the 80 meter band as well.

Dave


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Feb Thu 11, 2010 3:39 pm 
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Joined: Feb Mon 08, 2010 11:56 pm
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I think it was an episode of "Father Knows Best" where one of the children tuned into distress calls from the "Betty Ann" on the marine band, and the show followed that drama to a happy ending.

It's funny how you can see a TV episode one time and remember the name of the ship over 30 years later, and that's most likely because of the link to radio.

Brian


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Feb Thu 11, 2010 7:25 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Location: Boston, MA USA
I've sailed for many years and the 2-4 MHz marine band is what we used to use for ship-ship and ship-shore communications, but that service was mostly relocated to 49 MHz VHF-FM about 30 years ago. What is left is commercial marine traffic which requires the longer range of that band, but it is required that SSB transmission be used, which most of these receivers cannot decode.

-David


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Feb Fri 12, 2010 2:44 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Location: Loudonville,NY US
When I was a kid living in central NJ I would listen to fishing boats on weekends on about 2182 KHZ. The signal used was DSB ( AM) so you would hear alot of hetrodynes, ( like CB). I could hear boats from Long Island to Virginia. Some marine portables also had a LF band 200- 550 khz to listen to CW radio beacons along the coast. They had some type of directional antenna on top to null in a signal, for navigation. As AM broadcast towers were
marked on marine charts you could use these as well on the AM
broadcast band for navigation. Ray Jefferson and even Heathkit made some of these radios.
Today on 2-3 MHZ the AM is gone replaced by single sideband. Most small boat traffic now days is from 156-160 MHZ VHF FM.

Mike


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PostPosted: Feb Fri 12, 2010 3:02 am 
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Location: Brunswick, ME 04011 (USA)
...wasn't 2182 kHz the international emergency frequency?...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Feb Fri 12, 2010 3:21 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Location: Loudonville,NY US
Yes, 2182 KHZ was used for distress traffic AND initial contact frequency. Then boats would shift to a nearby "working" frequency.

Mike


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Feb Fri 12, 2010 9:05 am 
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Location: Palmerston North, New Zealand
dberman51 said:

Quote:
but that service was mostly relocated to 49 MHz VHF-FM about 30 years ago


Really? Where? The first time I went up the St Lawrence Seaway in the mid-60's was on a Liberty Boat with no VHF radio. The pilot bought one on board that was on the 156Mhz band even then. When we got back to the UK, Marconi's fitted a VHF 156Mhz rig in my office with a remote on the bridge. Even then the MF 2182kHz band was on the way out.

_________________
Cheers - Marty ZL2MC


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PostPosted: Feb Fri 12, 2010 11:48 pm 
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Location: Las Vegas, NV, USA 89052
2,182 KHz (USB I believe) is still in use as a calling / emergency freq.. While listening to an amateur maritime net last week, I heard the US Coast Guard request a sailboat contact them using that freq. Small craft marine radio telephones are pretty standard at 100 watts. HF freqs are somewhat noisy/staticy, but can skip off the ionisphere and under good conditions, provide world-wide communucations.

The current VHF marine freqs., channels 2 to 88, run from about 156 to 162 MHz, (wide band FM). Most are simplex (same freq. for transmit & receive), some are duplex (different freq for Tx & Rx), and some channels use different freqs depending on whether you're talking about US or international use. Channel 16 (156.8 MHz simplex) is the distress/safety/calling channel. Marine VHF FM (limited to 25 watts), while often noise free, is also basically line-of-sight and thus limited to more local use.

Greg


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