rally net - protocols and conventions
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Thread: rally net - protocols and conventions

  1. #1
    Mostly TSD Weenie
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    Default rally net - protocols and conventions

    I am sort of surprised there isn't a thread about this here. Once you have your ticket and radio, what should you be doing during the rally, and how do you avoid looking like a total jerk on the net?

    I've got a darned good story from the old days, but I will save it until after we get some discussion going.

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  3. #2
    R6+ / Cr, Sheeps Maybe KDeV's Avatar
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    Any rally I've worked we've used tactical calls and we're usually the only users of the repeater.
    Rallies worked: CARS: Perce-Neige, Shannonville, Lanark, Black Bear, Galway-Cavendish, Tall Pines. RA: Mt. Washington
    ...also known as VA3KDV

  4. #3

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    The best way to learn how to use your radio and how to work nets is to go do it. Large public events such as the MS 150 bike ride also use ham radio safety nets. That said, the FCC rule is that you can use tactical calls but you must give your call sign in closing. A net is directed, that is, don't speak unless spoken to. If you have something to report, first you call net. Here is a typical conversation:

    Control, this is Marshal 23.

    Marshal 23, go ahead.

    Car 27 is off the road within my sight. The crew is out and signalling OK. Marshal 23 monitoring. KC5TRY

    Control copies.

    Oh by the way, the reason the rally is usually the only group on the repeater is because the regular repeater users who pay for the upkeep of the repeater have given permission for it to be used and have chosen to not use it during the rally.

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  6. #4

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    Don't talk to hear your own voice. Convey information succinctly and shut up.

    Mark Holden - G2 Nissan Sentra SE-R

  7. #5
    Tower City Race Team Dante's Avatar
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    And ALWAYS verify your mic is not keyed when you are done.

    Tapatalkin'
    Gone to Group 5 Rear Wheel Drive!!! Car #50

    I'll catch you if I can!

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Herman...am/49931201369

  8. #6
    Mostly TSD Weenie
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    OK, time to add a couple.
    - Know your job and only transmit that information that relates to it. We probably could come up with a set of radio jobs and the appropriate communications.
    - Make darned sure that your info is accurate and official. For example, noticing that CAR 0 is through is not sufficient to report stage is hot to NET. Wait for the captain to tell you it is hot.
    - I disagree with Richard a bit on tactical callsigns, as we have generally interpreted the identification requirement to mean identify when a particular assignment opens and closes. I.E. 'WA9OHS is now START 5', then identify as START 5 until the transmission 'START 5 is now closed - WA9OHS'

  9. #7
    Mostly TSD Weenie
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    Time for my story.
    This was back at an event in Colorado in 1980. Back before we had figured out the need for net control and a lot of stuff was very informal.

    I was riding right seat in CAR 0 on stage 2, heading up a set of mountain switchbacks when I received a call from a friend who was working START2.
    START2: "We have cars piling up. How long until you are ready?"
    ME: "We're about 1/2 mile from the finish. We should be able to clear the stage in about 5 minutes"
    (following unknown to me)
    Radio guy turns to stage captain and says "They say they will be clear in 5 minutes". Captain turns to starter and says "Release the first car in 5 minutes"

    Just then we encounter the last intersection just in time to see a drunk punch out the marshall, get back in his 1.5 ton wood truck and head down the course.
    ME: "Start2, we have a problem and won't be able to open the stage until the truck is clear of the stage"
    START2: "Uh oh" <pause> "We have started 2 cars already"

    And this friends is how I found myself sitting in a Fire Arrow running at 100 MPH downhill against rally traffic while flipping the OSCARS on and off for dear life.

    P.S. We stopped both cars. The sheriff arrested the truck driver at START2. He was convicted for DUI and assault. I learned a valuable lesson that day about conversation vs official information.

  10. #8
    Zero Cents!
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    I think the concern with tactical vs FCC is the requirement to identify every 10 minutes during operation. I've looked at a number of the ARES net protocols, and even they differ on what is considered a directed net conversation (only need to ID at the end). As a worker, I have often been reminded to use the FCC to end my transmissions. As such, I have gotten into the habit of opening with Tactical, and ALWAYS using the FCC to finish the last portion of the particular exchange.

    This is likely more relevant in a course car, where I am not on air on a "routine" basis, than a stationary work position/stage worker relaying info at regular intervals during a hot stage.

  11. #9
    Straight @ "T" w1jim's Avatar
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    I think it is wise to ID at the end of each series of transmissions or every 10 minutes. There are folks out there who resent what we do and will look for any opportunity to make a stink over things like this.

    You also need to be careful with your use of words. For example phrases like cars are rolling or cars are piling up can easily be misconstrued.
    I don't care where you live - it's a long walk home.

  12. #10
    Mostly TSD Weenie
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    Quote Originally Posted by w1jim View Post
    I think it is wise to ID at the end of each series of transmissions or every 10 minutes. There are folks out there who resent what we do and will look for any opportunity to make a stink over things like this.
    Might be a regional thing, depending on where you are working. Much of my experience has been in Colorado using either temporary repeaters or rural ones where we drew much of the comms from the repeater club. lately, I have worked a few in Michigan UP, which is much the same.

    At any rate, I will always defer to NET Control's direction on this and everything else. If he is asking for TAC ID only, that's what I will give.

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