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Old 04-04-2009, 9:56 AM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Guttenberg, New Jersey
Posts: 4
Default NY Harbor/Hudson River Marine Frequencies

Does anybody have a updated list of common frequencies for marine traffic on the Hudson River and NY Harbor. I occassionally catch boats before heading out to sea by the Narrows but I am never really able to catch stuff consistently. When scanning the marine channels I end up getting random chatter but nothing too interesting. I am surprised not to hear tugboat traffic or even NY Waterway very often, if ever.

I am wondering if there are some good goto frequencies here. I am still new to the area (and scanning) so any advice or input would be helpful. As my house is about 200 feet from the Hudson on the NJ side (across from the boat basin), I would expect to get more than what I am getting.

Any recommendations?

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Old 04-04-2009, 10:11 AM
dave3825's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: East Farmingdale, NY
Posts: 678

What kind of scanner do you have? Unidens have a close call feature and rs/gre have some signal stalker mode. These are used to receive transmissions that are close to you. Do you know that name of any of the tug boat companys? Have a look hear also FCC Licenses and Scanner Frequencies for New York County, New York (NY) Im really not into tug boats but hopefully some familiar with them will post.
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Old 04-04-2009, 12:19 PM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Guttenberg, New Jersey
Posts: 4

Dave - thanks for the reply. I have a Uniden BCT-15 but I would say I am far from qualified to use it. I know it is a very powerful and dynamic unit however I have been unable thus far to utilize some of its many features. I have been able to use freescan to upload some already noted frequencies to it and have great success with those but generally scanning the Marine frequencies I have found very little.

It does have the close call feature but even with police driving by, buses driving by, helicopters directly above me and boats on the river, I have yet to get a hit with it. I am sure I am doing something wrong but as you probably know these things take some time to get used to... baby steps I guess.

I will certainly check out the link that you passed along - thank you. Any additional feedback from others is definitely appreciated.

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Old 04-04-2009, 12:39 PM
DaveNF2G's Avatar
  Amateur Radio Operator
Amateur Radio
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Rensselaer, NY
Posts: 6,421

Here is some general advice that might help you to find the frequencies you want. In fact, this would apply to finding almost anything.

Scan all of the VHF Marine channels.

Scan all MURS/FRS/GMRS channels.

Search the "business" bands for community repeaters and/or simplex channels that might be used by the targets of interest.

It is probably best to do these things separately at first and build up a list of possible frequencies in each set. Then try cross-monitoring for related traffic that might appear on multiple frequencies. This is easier if you have more than one scanner, but still possible with only one. Developing the ability to recognize voices over the radio is extremely helpful in this phase.

You can narrow your search somewhat using the FCC ULS database, but it takes some practice to develop an effective search technique there. Also, people who use transmitters that are licensed to radio shops do not have to have their own callsigns, so they won't appear in the FCC's records.
David T. Stark
NF2G WQMY980 KYR7128
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