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Author Topic: Are you allowed to talk to pilots flying around?  (Read 20009 times)
squale
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« on: April 20, 2005, 01:00:43 PM »

If you have a airband tranceiver, and you are sitting in your house, are you allowed to chit-chat with pilots flying overhead?  and can you give them currenty weather conditions at your house if you have a little home weather station thing set up?  or is this all illegal based on FAA rules?
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AJ Long
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« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2005, 01:09:56 PM »

I'm not 100% sure, but i'd tend to think it's illegal. If they wanted weather or any of that, they could just tune the nearest ATIS or give the FSS a call. As said tho, i'm not 100% sure...
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squale
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« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2005, 01:21:34 PM »

hmm... well on the CTAF I always hear pilots just BS'ing to each other... don't see why you couldn't chime in on the fun from at home?

this is probably going to make my decision of going for a regular scanner or going for a more expensive tranceiver.... I would like to talk to other pilots from at home if I can.
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Jason
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« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2005, 01:31:16 PM »

Dave can help me with the radio regs on this one, but I believe that the chit-chat on the CTAF is alowed because the radios are installed in the aircraft and the operator is using them in the a/c.  I believe you would need a license to broadcast with a transciever.  Pilots buy handheld transcievers for back-up but only transmit with them in the air.
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squale
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« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2005, 01:33:35 PM »

Hey Jason, thanks for the info and you may infact be correct about that..

that's cool you have your own feed?  I want to set up my own feed too for some local airports, but I am about 25 miles away in a straight line distance from the nearest control tower, so I am not sure if I will even get to pick them up or not?

what scanner, antenna do you recommend?
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Jason
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« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2005, 01:40:17 PM »

It all depends on your budget and other info.  Terrain, transmitter locations, whether you want a handheld or base..etc

I have 3 scanners, The one I use for my feed is a Uniden BC780XLT which is now replaced by the BC785D (Digital) It is a great base scanner.  I have had the most sucess with Uniden, but Radio Shack's Pro-95 is a great scanner as well.  It is all based on your specific situation.  I have a Radio Shack discone which I have in my attic which I will be moving to my roof on Sunday which really improves my reception.
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squale
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« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2005, 01:44:02 PM »

how far out from the airport are you?

I live at 1700msl and the airport which is 25 miles away is at 200msl, do you think I have any chance at getting it?
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MIAMIATC
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« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2005, 01:54:51 PM »

i believe it is illegal and the airline pilots and private piolts would not answer. WHERE i live in the NYC area we had an incident years ago of pilots recieving bogus vectors into LGA airport
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Jason
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« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2005, 01:58:48 PM »

I remember a little while back someone was pretending to be an ATC and giving dangerous vectors.  He was sentenced to something like 50 counts of atempted murder do to all the lives at stake.  Interesting stuff, but leave it to the pilots and ATC's  cheesy
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squale
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« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2005, 02:11:03 PM »

is the BC780XLT and the 785D the same exact scanner just that the 785 can be UPGRADED to digital and it has 1000 channels instead of 500?  are they the only differences?

ps.. is there anything such as a BC780HLT.. my friend said he has an HLT model but I don't think Uniden makes such a thing...

how long as the 780XLT been out for?  has there been upgrades to it since it was first release?
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Jason
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« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2005, 02:49:31 PM »

The 785D is a completely different scanner to begin with.  The 780XLT was discontinued since the 785D came out since it was a digital scanner.  I have never seen a 780HLT.  I bought mine a few years back.
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squale
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« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2005, 02:55:53 PM »

actually from reading online the 785 and the 780 look like basically the same exact scanner with the only differences being the 785 having 1000 channels instead of the 500 channels on the 780, and also that the 785 can take the digital card to make it APCO digital..

other than that they are the same scanner, the screen is a little different, but from what I read, the 785 screen is WORSE, most people liked the 780 screen better..

Do you know how long the 780 has been out for?  how long do these things usually last btw?
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Jason
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« Reply #12 on: April 20, 2005, 03:07:16 PM »

Well I bought my 780XLT back in December of '03 and my Uncle bought a 785D 2 years ago.  I like mine a lot better.  It is a lot easier to use.  It all depends on what the use is to be.

I have been running the feed since December and the scanner doesn't really ware.  I've had by BC860XLT for over 10 years now and has not broke.  I had an issue with my power cord a few months on the 780XLT after I bought it.  I sent Uniden the cord and they fixed it and sent it back to me.
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squale
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« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2005, 03:08:49 PM »

nice, so do you know when the 780xlt first came out?  I am trying to figure out how long this scanner has been out for?
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dave
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« Reply #14 on: April 20, 2005, 03:43:36 PM »

Quote from: squale
If you have a airband tranceiver, and you are sitting in your house, are you allowed to chit-chat with pilots flying overhead?  and can you give them currenty weather conditions at your house if you have a little home weather station thing set up?  or is this all illegal based on FAA rules?


This is strongly discouraged.  I can't find an explicit guideline in the AIM prohibiting it, but the frequency (CTAF) is really reserved (in practice) for aircraft arriving and departing the airport.  Of course, it goes without saying that you should never transmit on a frequency used by any ATC facility.

It's not a CB.  And while you may hear pilots exchanging pleasantries, that isn't the norm.  One thing to keep in mind is that many CTAF frequencies are shared by multiple airports, so freqencies are already congested.

Hope this helps.

Dave
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squale
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« Reply #15 on: April 20, 2005, 03:46:41 PM »

yes good point, this is a bad idea the more I think of it...

I think I will just get something like the BC 780XLT scanner.. you think that's a good one?
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dave
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« Reply #16 on: April 20, 2005, 04:02:10 PM »

Quote from: squale
nice, so do you know when the 780xlt first came out?  I am trying to figure out how long this scanner has been out for?


The 780XLT has been out for several years...it's a fantastic scanner, one of the best ever made.  And thethe fact that it covers the military (UHF) airband is a huge plus.

Dave
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squale
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« Reply #17 on: April 20, 2005, 04:04:57 PM »

oh most don't do the MiliAirband?
what is that frequency range?  I wonder if I would even pick up any of that Military stuff in Northern, NJ where I live
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Jason
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« Reply #18 on: April 20, 2005, 04:05:03 PM »

The 27 bands it covers and helpful search functions on it made me buy it.  You can try and get it off e-bay.  I bought mine for $315 when it was first released.  It has been the best scanner I have EVER used.  One of the best purchases I've ever made in my life.  Welll worth it.
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Jason
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« Reply #19 on: April 20, 2005, 04:07:28 PM »

It has continous band coverage from 25MHz to 1.3 GHz (excluding the cell phone band in the 900's to 1200's)  There are also many adapters and accesories for the scanner, like an extension head, AM radio adapter, its PC connectable with a serial cable...etc
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dave
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« Reply #20 on: April 20, 2005, 04:07:36 PM »

Quote from: squale
oh most don't do the MiliAirband?
what is that frequency range?  I wonder if I would even pick up any of that Military stuff in Northern, NJ where I live


Most actually don't do milair.  You have to check: 225-400 MHz.  And you can pick up plenty in Northern New Jersey.

Look at this site for a lot of great information:

http://www.milaircomms.com/

They also have a Yahoo Group:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MilAirCommsChat/

-dave
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KSYR-pjr
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« Reply #21 on: April 20, 2005, 04:09:10 PM »

Quote from: Dave
Quote from: squale
If you have a airband transceiver, and you are sitting in your house, are you allowed to chit-chat with pilots flying overhead?  and can you give them current weather conditions at your house if you have a little home weather station thing set up?  or is this all illegal based on FAA rules?


This is strongly discouraged.  I can't find an explicit guideline in the AIM prohibiting it, but the frequency (CTAF) is really reserved (in practice) for aircraft arriving and departing the airport.  Of course, it goes without saying that you should never transmit on a frequency used by any ATC facility.


Regarding chatting on a US-based air frequency, you won't find information about unauthorized parties using the air frequencies in the AIM because the AIM is not regulatory.  The FAR (Federal Aviation Regulations) is the document that is regulatory but it only deals with "authorized parties."  

Using a handheld transmitter to speak on frequencies designated as air frequencies without an authorized aircraft or ground-based station ID is a violation of FCC (the US govt branch responsible for the frequencies) regulations and fines and penalties are pretty stiff.  

I believe that ground-based stations, such as FBOs, who need to broadcast on an air frequency must apply for a radio license with the FCC.   Pilots who use hand-helds to broadcast from the ground (as in to receive a clearance before aircraft start) are authorized by virtue of their aircraft ID.

To the person who pointed out that there is a lot of chit-chat on air frequencies, you are certainly right.  However, keep in mind that both parties doing the chatting are identifiable by a station ID.  If it were determined that the chat violated some FCC regulation, they would be identified by their station ID and prosecuted.
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Regards, Peter
ATC Feed:  Syracuse (KSYR), NY
squale
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« Reply #22 on: April 20, 2005, 04:12:32 PM »

sounds good,,, so I guess the handhelds don't do nearly as many bands as this one does huh?  I was contemplating going for the new Bearcat 246T handheld.. how do you think that compares to the 780xlt?

oh by the way, looking at the specs on the 780xlt I don't see it saying LTR.. it says:

TrunkTracker III - EDACS, MOTOROLA, E.F. JOHNSON

but then if you look at the 796D for instance it says:

TrunkTracker IV - EDACS®, Motorola®, LTR, APCO

I understand TrunkTracker IV comes from having APCO digital as well thus giving 4 trunking systems, but why does it have LTR and the 780xlt has EF Johnson instead and no LTR?

was EF Johnson an older technology replaced by LTR or something?  I must be missing something here..

thanks
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Jason
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« Reply #23 on: April 20, 2005, 04:15:52 PM »

To tell you the truth, I do not use the Trunk Tracking.  My Uncle bought his 785D because he wanted to have the Digital Trunking and moniter the CT state police.  Technology is always improving though.  It depends how you want to use the scanner.  If you are going to use it for mostly VHF/UHF it's worth while to get the 780XLT, while if you want the Digital Trunk Tracking capability, the 785D might be your choice.

The 785XLT also has TV band search in the search mode.  I can mute my TV and tune into channel 4 for the audio  Cheesy
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squale
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« Reply #24 on: April 20, 2005, 04:24:31 PM »

this might be a dumb question but can the 780xlt get regular FM radio stations?  how about AM radio stations?

and finally how about CB frequenices so if you are on the road with it you can listen to what all the truckers are talking about?

Thanks
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