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Communications

General

YB Tracking Ltd.
July 2014 Yellowbrick changed its brand to YB Tracking Ltd. This is not an EPIRB or a PLB; it does not just transmit your position in an emergency, it transmits your position on a regular basis, all the time. Yellowbrick is battery powered, and will run for up to 3 months, transmitting hourly.

[Show additional 6 entries for this category]

Communication Equipment

VHF Radio Licences & Operator Training
Read this report of VHF radio licence requirements and links to national licencing and operator training.

[Show additional 5 entries for this category]

Internet On Board

Eastern Mediterranean: Connecting to the internet
SY Serenity found that a Vodaphone modem worked best for them in the Eastern Med - July 2013.

Getting online while cruising
Some ideas by SV Totem on how to get online as an active worldwide cruiser.

How to keep your connection to the internet on board, so you can remain online offshore
Yachting World article January 2015: Matthew Sheahan investigates a number of ways to hook up to the internet on board and advises on the equipment you might consider.

MailASail
Tel:+44 20 70432832
Wide range of services: free weather, email compression software, GPS tracking and blogging tool, satellite phone airtime, WiFi hotspot antenna, advice on comms equipment.

OnBoard WiFi: Get Connected
Posted July 2015.
Whether you need reliable internet access aboard to work, or just like the convenience of web browsing from the cokpit, Cruising World discuss the options available.

UUPlus Satellite Email Service
UUPlus software is specifically designed for Internet email and file transfer over slow and/or error prone connections.

Position Reporting Systems for Cruisers

MailASail
Tel:+44 20 70432832
Wide range of services: free weather, email compression software, GPS tracking and blogging tool, satellite phone airtime, WiFi hotspot antenna, advice on comms equipment.

SkyMate
Range of communication services for cruisers including weather, position reporting, email, weblog and fax/voice.

YB Tracking Ltd.
July 2014 Yellowbrick changed its brand to YB Tracking Ltd. This is not an EPIRB or a PLB; it does not just transmit your position in an emergency, it transmits your position on a regular basis, all the time. Yellowbrick is battery powered, and will run for up to 3 months, transmitting hourly.

YIT (Yachts in Transit)
A growing community of yachts in transit (predominantly NZ and associated South Pacific region) run by Gulf Harbour Radio. Free, easy Chrome App for position reporting, own page with map, blog and photos.

YOTREPS
Free service to help keep family and friends up to date with where you are cruising. Send a daily email to their server with position information, and subscribe to the summary email which comes out daily to see where other boats are. This website also has a useful section called "Jetsam" with timeless articles for ocean navigators.

Yachtplot.com
Low cost, managed position reporting system designed for cruising sailors.

sQuidd.io
Posted November 2012
The main feature of use to blue water cruisers is the "follow list", which allows a user to post position updates to Facebook from a smart phone or satellite phone, and to follow his/her sailing friends or regatta competitors on a map.

Cruising Radio Nets - Caribbean

Bahamas Cruiser Net
VHF Channel 68
08:15 local time for Marsh Harbour Abaco, Bahamas.

Bahamas Weather (BASRA)
4003 kHz at 1100 UTC

C AM Breakfast Club
Operates at 0900 EDT on 7083.

Carib WX George
Operates at 0700 EDT on 7241.

Caribbean
6215 kHz at 1000 UTC (Uncontrolled 1000-1200).

Caribbean Maritime Mobile Net
Posted September 2013.
George Kline operates this daily weather net (except Sundays) at 1100 UTC on 7250 LSB. Whilst this is a "HAM" net, anyone can listen. During severe weather the net sometimes also operates in the afternoons, and this is announced on an ad hoc basis during the morning net.

Caribbean NW Net
Northwest Caribbean net, 1400 UTC 6209 USB, alternates 6212 and 6516, 7 days/wk. Generally covers Providencia north to Mexico on the Carib side, including Providencia, San Andreas, Honduras, Guatemala, Belize, Mexico, Cuba, Jamaica and the Caymans. They often follow boats all the way home to Key West through Galveston on the US coast, and sometimes boats heading south will continue to check in down to Panama, but not often.

Caribbean SSB Weather Net
Controller Dave. 8104 kHz at 1230-1300 UTC and 12362 kHz at 1300-1330 UTC. Comprehensive Weather for Caribbean region.

Caribbean SW Net
6209 kHZ at 1315 UTC (0915 EDT). Weather and information Caribbean coast of Panama and Colombia.

Caribbean Safety and Security Net
The daily HF radio voice net was discontinued from 1st April 2014 due to lack of following. The CSSN now have a "report incident" icon on their hompage, with an associated reporting form, making it quick and easy to inform them. Security reports received are published on the website, so check the site regularly for the latest important NEWS and incident reports, or to read a history of incidents in the area you want to cruise. The site has many features under development, which will add new functions and further improve the user experience. The CSSN website also has information and links to a variety of other resources related to safety and security for cruisers. Their precautions checklist on how to prepare before you go is very useful.

Coconut Telegraph
Normally resumes full time 7 days a week operation early November. ,
8170 USB
Tel: 473-537-3569.
The eastern Caribbean's SSB net.
WINTER SCHEDULE
Effective October 15:
7 days a week on frequency 8.170 meg at 8AM AST.
At 8:10 AM AST change frequency to 4.060 meg.
SUMMER SCHEDULE
Effective May 30:
6 days a week (no Sundays) on same frequencies.
Effective July 15 to October 15.
Summer holiday. No broadcast until October 15.

Cruiseheimers Net
Eastern U.S. and Canada, The Bahamas, and northern Caribbean. A key Net for cruisers on the east coast of the USA, Caribbean and for those crossing from Europe.
Meets each morning, seven days a week at 0830 Eastern Time on SSB 8152 kHz / 8.152 mHz -OR- 6.516 mHz or 6.227 mHz during the seasonal change (very loosely defined as Fall to Spring).
This group of volunteers relay boats and locations, keeping an eye out for boats on passage. On the same frequency, Dick Giddings, DOODAH Net, at 1700 (05:00 PM Eastern time) also does the same, on 8152 USB.
The Cruiseheimers Net website also has some excellent communications articles.

Friendly Carib Net
Operates at 0600(EDT) on 7188.

Magellen Net
Operates at 0900 and 1800 EDT on 8173.

Marine Weather Centre
Chris Parker
Tel:+1 863-248-2702
Opening hours: Telephone Best times 10am-2pm EST (except Weds 10-1)
Custom weather reports for the Carribbean, Bahamas and Eastern Atlantic Ocean via SSB, phone or web. See website for more details.

SSCA "KPK" Radio Service
This Seven Seas Cruising Association service began on January 3, 2016. It immediately follows the Coconut Telegraph Net (see above) at 1215 hours UTC (0715 EST or 0815 AST) on SSB frequency 8.104, broadcasting to the entire Caribbean up to Maine with news and current events from around the Caribbean, Bahamas, and East Coast of the US.
The purpose of this service is to:
1. Pass emergency & priority traffic, as well as traffic related to safety and security.
2. Provide current news updates of interest to cruisers from such sources as the Caribbean Safety & Security Net, Noonsite, The Salty Southeast Cruisers Net, Caribbean Compass, Bahamas Chatter and others.
3. And to provide any vessels needing assistance with land based resources Caribbean-wide.
Established in September 2015 by Glenn Tuttle (based in SW Florida), the SSCA Radio Service also stands by following both the Cruiseheimers and Doo Dah Nets most days on 8.152. KPK are also authorized to operate on 12.350 and are still working on expanding the antenna array to include that frequency to monitor at 1800 hrs EDT when Chris Parker has his net for vessels in the Atlantic and beyond.
Through a partnership with the Caribbean Safety & Security Net, any report of a safety & security nature occurring in the Caribbean will be immediately provided to the CSSN. Likewise, any recent incident posted on the CSSN website will be announced during this broadcast. The Caribbean Safety and Security Net’s primary mission is the collection and dissemination of accurate information relating to crimes against yachts in the Caribbean, enabling cruisers to make intelligent decisions about how and where they cruise.
“KPK” can assist with radio checks, float plans, telephone contact with family & friends, boat to boat relays, access to medical or mechanical professionals, marinas, Internet searches, or any other assistance that we may be able to provide.
Although this is a service provided by the SSCA, all vessels are welcome to participate in this service.
Questions or comments are welcome using the e-mail address above.

Salty Southeast Cruisers Net
Up-to-date information about cruising southeastern United States and the Bahamas.

Waterway Cocktail Net
Operates at 1630 EDT on 7086.

Waterway Net
Operates at 0745 EDT on 7268.

Cruising Radio Nets - Asia

Brunei Bay Radio
HF/SSB voice and e-mail services from Brunei on the NW coast of Borneo. Service area covers the NW Pacific, SE Asia, and eastern Indian Oceans (plus N and W coasts of Australia). SailMail host for this region, and also BBRemail service for cruisers.

Indian Ocean Net
The morning net focuses on the Eastern part of the Indian Ocean from the west coast of Malaysia/Thailand to Cochin, and an evening net focuses on the Western part, from Cochin to Eritrea. The morning IO net will be at 0230 GMT (which is 09:30am Thai and 08:00am Cochin). The evening IO net at 1400 GMT (which is 07:30pm India time and 05:00pm in Eritrea). On Frequency 8143.00, Reporting boat name, total number of crew, position and weather. And anything else.

Phuket Net
A new net, THE PHUKET NET will start on 8188 on 6th January 2010 at 0100utc (0800 local time Thailand).

SE Asia Cruisers Radio Net
THIS NET IS NO LONGER OPERATIONAL. Established in January 2013 following loss of the Mobile Maritime Net. Operated on 8167 mhz at 0730 Thai time (0830 Malay time) every morning.

Cruising Radio Nets - Mediterranean

Mediterranean Radio Nets
See web link for list and further information.

Cruising Radio Nets - Atlantic

Atlantic Radio Nets
See web link for list and further information.

Cruiseheimers Net
Eastern U.S. and Canada, The Bahamas, and northern Caribbean. A key Net for cruisers on the east coast of the USA, Caribbean and for those crossing from Europe.
Meets each morning, seven days a week at 0830 Eastern Time on SSB 8152 kHz / 8.152 mHz -OR- 6.516 mHz or 6.227 mHz during the seasonal change (very loosely defined as Fall to Spring).
This group of volunteers relay boats and locations, keeping an eye out for boats on passage. On the same frequency, Dick Giddings, DOODAH Net, at 1700 (05:00 PM Eastern time) also does the same, on 8152 USB.
The Cruiseheimers Net website also has some excellent communications articles.

South African SSB Nets
For an up to date list of nets that operate in the region.

Cruising Radio Nets - Pacific

British Columbia Boaters' Net
The BCBN operates daily during the summer months from 1700 PDT using the Vancouver Island Trunk System. The starting date for 2014 was June 21. The purpose of this net is to provide information to mariners, and to facilitate communications between boaters and with friends and family back home. Methods of contacting the BDBN are shown on their website.

List of Pacific Radio Nets
Comprehensive and updated list of Radio nets covering the Pacific.

Communications: Understanding Marine high-frequency Single Sideband Radio
A useful, clearly written article by Fredrick Gary Hareland and published in Ocean Navigator - May 2015.

Ham or SSB Maritime Net Information
Posted July 2012
SV Camelot have over 100 HAM/SSB Nets listed in PDF format for free download.

Is your SSB ready for the Atlantic?

The Essential Role of HF/SSB Radio in Ocean Cruising

The Icom M802 Radio Manual For "Idi-Yachts"

Where & When Propagation tool
The first Propagation tool for marine SSB communication. A very helpful tool, if you don´t know which frequency is best for communication between two boats.

Reports

Ordering spares whilst cruising the Eastern Mediterranean

The Caribbean Safety and Security Net (CSSN)

Seychelles: OmniAccess provides High Speed Ku-band VSAT Coverage in the Seychelles

Founder of Radio Net goes SK (Silent Key)

Iridium Airtime - How it Works

Iridium 9505A Sat Phone - Failure

The AIS System Explained

Question About International SIM-card

WiFi for Beginners

SailMail network expands in response to increasing requests from cruising yachts

Caribbean: 3G Phone and Internet Access
Posted February 2014.
Useful article published February 2014 by Caribbean Compass. Go to page 21.
Google Earth
Satellite imagery and maps of the world.
Staying in Touch when Cruising
Posted May 2016.
How do you stay in touch with friends and family when you are out of cell phone range? Interesting article by long-term liveaboard Carolyn Shearlock.
General
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UK: BBC to assess future of Shipping Forecast - with update

UK: BBC to assess future of Shipping Forecast - with update  (22 Nov 2013)

UK: VHF users face 'rocket science' training

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Atlantic Crossing HF Radio NET Group - 2013/14

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Pan Pacific Net needs Net Controllers

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Coconut Telegraph is Moving

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Great New Service for noonsite users: Get notified of cruising news, reports and country updates as they are posted

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South Pacific, New Zealand: Russell Radio Discontinues SSB Service

South Pacific, New Zealand: Russell Radio Discontinues SSB Service  (08 May 2013)

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Caribbean Safety and Security Online User Survey: Results now published  (10 Apr 2013)

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SE Asia Cruisers Radio Net Now Closed  (22 Feb 2013)

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French Polynesia: OmniAccess expands high-speed network coverage  (21 Aug 2012)

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Mediterranean Cruisers Net (MedNet) - New Frequency  (30 Jul 2012)

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Useful Advice on Keeping Personal Information Safe on the Internet  (18 Feb 2011)

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Indian Ocean Net (IO Net) Now Closed  (06 Jun 2010)

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AIS Satellite Announcement  (18 Sep 2008)

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Fred Meyer - Radio "PiriPiri"  (28 Aug 2008)

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Update Mobile Maritime Net SE Asia  (27 Aug 2008)

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Latest News On Mobile Maritime Net SE Asia  (04 Aug 2008)

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US Coast Guard Announces Decision to Continue HF Weather Broadcasts  (29 Feb 2008)

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Fate Of North American LORAN-C Radionavigation System To be Decided  (16 Jan 2007)

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Brunei Bay Radio Services  (23 Feb 2005)

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South East Asian Maritime Net frequency modification  (13 Jul 2004)

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SailMail gateway opens in Belgium  (28 Aug 2002)