Maritime Mobile (daytime) Net on 14.300 mhz both were Canadian, one i'm assuming was a scheduled carrier the other a corporate Gulfstream....both were in the Caribbean heading for Canada.
Just wondering how many of you pilots out there monitor the Amateur HF frequencies and if so which ones
I have sometimes monitored US airliners trans Atlantic flights on 40 meters.....
call sign: VE9YA
Amateur Radio is an interesting hobby I'm sure. Just to answer your question though, I wouldn't think most pilots would be monitoring other non-ATC radio sites, at least not while they are flying. Many jets have SELCAL, which notifies them with a chime alert when ATC is attempting to contact them. When the SELCAL chime/light is received by the pilot, is the point when the pilot will turn on his HF and make the required communication exchange, then again vacate the frequency to attend to the various piloting duties he is concerned with in his flight. These include navigation & regular position-reporting as well as meeting the demands of pax & crew and monitoring various aircraft systems and functions. There is usually more than enough things to keep him busy with his piloting responsibilities enroute, so I would doubt whether many pilots would take time enroute to "play" much with the HF.
Perhaps I speak for myself, but look at the HF as a necessary evil, where VHF is not available. I often wonder why there are not a series of ocean-based overhead-satellites and a VHF-repeater-system to maintain a radar-tracking & a VHF-ATC system across Watrs and Atlantic & Pacific routes, to improve air-to-ground communication ability. I suppose the HF com system is adequate for the most part from an admin view, but for the pilot/operator viewpoint, more direct routes and more efficient altitudes would enhance any ocean area flight.
This is the first i've heard of Selective Calling associated with HF, interesting....
I can somewhat relate to your cockpit duties as i'm a pilot myself but i'm not allowed to fly the big ones, come to think of it i'm not allowed to fly anything these days
If you have the time or need, 14.300 Mhz is active from 12:00 UTC-16:00 UTC with the Intercon Net and from 17:00 UTC-01:00 UTC with the Maritime Mobile Net, these Nets pass traffic and in some instances do phone patches.....
Interesting topic, thanks for starting the discussion.
I think that one of the major reasons that aircraft pilots attempt to minimize the time they spend on HF is the static. SELCAL solves this problem by basically 'ringing the phone' when someone wants to call the aircraft. This means it is not essential for us to monitor any given HF frequency.
Apropos of your very kind offer to establish contact on 14,300, do you think I would be successful if I tried to call you from Vancouver Island? Also, are there any unique protocols for using that frequency that we pilots may not be aware of? In other words, is it sufficient to simply broadcast a call such as "VE9YA, this is C-FABC calling?"
It would sure be helpful in my line of work (production testing new aircraft, and delivering new aircraft) if I could call an amateur radio operator to carry out a function test of the HF radio in the aircraft. It is sometimes difficult to contact aviation ground stations from Southern Canada, because there isn't much of a HF ground station network in Southern Canada, and the HF frequencies used in the Arctic are sometimes a bit too low to enable me to reach them during the daytime.
Vancouver Military is a HF site located in BC. MACS Trenton is "the" HF site for all of North America.PanEuropean wrote: It is sometimes difficult to contact aviation ground stations from Southern Canada, because there isn't much of a HF ground station network in Southern Canada, and the HF frequencies used in the Arctic are sometimes a bit too low to enable me to reach them during the daytime.
FWIW - SELCAL requires that your HF radio be tuned to the frequency to which you are maintain SELCAL Watch. It is just a harmonic tone that your coded receiver recognizes as its address.
A colleague told me that several years ago he had Gander Radio pick up his HF radio calls one night. Quite an interesting skip, because Mumbai couldn't hear him and he was overflying the Arabian Sea between Oman and India at the time.
You may be able to find a tolerant net controller as a part of "The Maritime Mobile Service Net" which operates on 14.300 and handles traffic from pleasure boats and commercial operations when no other means of contact exist, and they will always handle emergency traffic from any source. Makes for some interesting listening sometimes to hear of a mariner in distress and the various stations providing rescue co-ordination services.
When I used to fly AC with HF installed, I would use the radio on the ham bands regularly. Our pilots used to always slag the HF radio as not working, and a useless piece of crap. It used to be a lot of fun to show them I could get on the 20 metre band and talk all over North America, and most of Europe without difficulty on the 100 watt transceiver from the high teens.
That said, I've held a licence since 1967 and was an SWL for several years before that.
73 to VE9YA
Quebec Radio on 5680 is great for a getting a METAR/TAF - weather breifing - and filing a flight plan.
Much more relieable than my POS Globalstar phone and accessable from the ground/water.