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VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Discussion about gear used for offshore yakking.

VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Postby Seasherpa » 10 May 2016, 23:08

I did the coursework for my radio licence last year but only got around to doing the face to face work and practical tonight.
The presenter did the usual intro/why do you need a licence circuit of the room and after a string of barcrushers and was shocked to hear I needed it to chase tuna off a ski at Portland :lol:
I thought I'd post the most useful thing I learned tonight which actually came from a side conversation with the presenter afterwards. We were talking transmission distance and he said the boaties get 10 - 15nm on VHF with a correctly installed antenna. He said kayaks would be around 7nm and agreed with what GME told me that installing a whip on the back of the yak like Minny has, but hooking it into my handheld would have limited gain on signal and would still be less than what a boatie is getting.
I was telling him how I dropped fully out of comms coverage (no phone or radio) with Jordo and Shane on one of the tuna trips last year and I'm sure they were much closer than 7nm so we were getting stuff all transmission distance on the water.I asked if he had any suggestions and he said we should be using the repeater towers at Portland and Warrnambool for our tuna trips.

So basically if we consider our working channel ie 72 has a transmission of 7nm (much less in big swells).
Portland and Warranabool repeaters pickup all transmissions within 25nm of the towers and boost then up before sending them back out Portland to Port Fairy repeater is on channel 81 and Warrnambool back to Port Campbell repeater is on Channel 80.
Legally you have to run a dual watch ie 16 and 72
But he suggested we run a tri-watch 16, 72 and 81.
That way if we drop out of comms on 72, we can switch to 81 and still be heard.
Unfortunately it only works if everyone's radio has the tri-watch function.
Last edited by Seasherpa on 11 May 2016, 09:22, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Useful VHF radio info for the tuna chasers

Postby shane » 11 May 2016, 01:11

I'm pretty sure mine has a tri-watch. Interestingly at Warrnambool on Saturday I heard the coast guard telling someone over the radio that most rec fishos in the area use channel 73. So maybe use 72 for less boatie traffic but keep in mind 73 if you want to hear whats going on or call a nearby boat (in addition to 16 for emergencies).

BTW where did you do your practical?
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VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Postby Seasherpa » 11 May 2016, 07:51

shane wrote:I'm pretty sure mine has a tri-watch. Interestingly at Warrnambool on Saturday I heard the coast guard telling someone over the radio that most rec fishos in the area use channel 73. So maybe use 72 for less boatie traffic but keep in mind 73 if you want to hear whats going on or call a nearby boat (in addition to 16 for emergencies).

BTW where did you do your practical?


Yeah you can use 71, 72, 73 or 77 for the working channel, guess it depends on how 'useful' the chatter is from the other boats :lol:
The practical was at Williamstown RSL, I booked through Peninsula boat training and it takes about 3 hours.
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Re: VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Postby mazman » 11 May 2016, 09:53

How have you found the new VHF shane?
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Re: VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Postby Jordo » 11 May 2016, 10:04

Great info eoin, I've given up on my vhf and im in the market for a new one - I'll make sure to get one with tri-watch
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Re: VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Postby shane » 11 May 2016, 11:04

mazman wrote:How have you found the new VHF shane?

Only really used it twice but so far its worked really well.
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Re: VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Postby Seasherpa » 11 May 2016, 21:23

Jordo wrote:Great info eoin, I've given up on my vhf and im in the market for a new one - I'll make sure to get one with tri-watch


Mine stuffed up on the last day up at SWR, I think it was water in the mike, I could hear transmissions fine but my transmissions out were garbled. I haven't used it since so will have to test it on the water to see if I need a new one or if it has come good.
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Re: VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Postby Rhino » 11 May 2016, 21:31

FishnDive wrote:The practical was at Williamstown RSL.........


When you say 'practical', do you mean the ACMA exam?

Which qualification did you get?
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Re: VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Postby Seasherpa » 11 May 2016, 22:04

Rhino wrote:
FishnDive wrote:The practical was at Williamstown RSL.........


When you say 'practical', do you mean the ACMA exam?

Which qualification did you get?


Did the new AWQ course rather than the LRCOP Rhino.
You get pre-reading/coursework videos to do in your own time and software to do practise tests.
Then you go in for a 3 hour face to face course (2 hours theory course, followed by a 25 question multiple choice written exam, and a practical exam on a VHF unit)

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Re: VHF radio info for the tuna/kingy chasers

Postby Rhino » 12 May 2016, 09:47

Well done Eoin. :up:
The AWQ might encourage a few more to get qualified.

I haven't received my LROCP licence yet despite having done the exam two weeks ago. The invigilators aren't authorised to score that exam and they have to be sent to ACMA.
I think we get a wallet size plastic licence.
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