Default Newbie with Marine VHF Questions

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Jul 17, 2014
Hey Guys & Gals...

I am new to this so bear with me.

I have a river house in the panhandle of FL only accessible by boat. There are only 911 addresses available for this location. There are no communications available except for VHF Radio. I have a Uniden Um380 Fixed Mount Vhf/2-Way Marine Radio with an 8ft Shakespeare antenna about 20 ft in the air. The unit is mounted under a covered dock on the water. Depending on what I need to do or not do, I may want to move this inside the house.

1. Do I need an MMSI?
2. Do I need a call sign?
3. Since this is a fixed position, do I need to do anything specific with local laws?
4. I would like to be able to make and receive phone calls on the VHF. I have read online about this but am unsure of procedures.

Any additional information would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for the help!


Apr 19, 2014
Not so good idea, this Marine Band for home phone.

ummmm, well yes, you need a 10 year license for $75 <--- or something like that, mine was $70 but that expired in 2005. I dont know what the schedule is today. I only got it to have a handheld when I was in a Boating related Scout Troop. And that's another thing; you can have a portable license, or a mobile license. As a portable station license, it is a crime to pick up a mic on a dash mounted radio and use your call sign. That violates what they call. "This license is not transferable". And same for the mobile license cannot use an HT, go figure. The FCC is truly strange.

people will tell you that you can never talk on land. That's not exactly true. You can talk to boats from marine business and other strange exceptions. Like an FBO can talk to airplanes on an airport. So get some weird boat related business license where you restore brass widgets from obsolete sailing vessels and you have a dockside business, lol As I said above, the HT's are gutless so get a 45 watt Mobile and mount it in a boat (the one filled with flowers in your front yard will do), use a 60 foot mast marked "Main Boom" and you're good to go.

No you are not supposed to talk to other land based Marine stations. But I've heard of many jurisdictions in the northeast USA and Canada where Cops and hunters use Marine Radio HT's to talk to each other without license. They know it's illegal, but they figure no one can hear them in the woods I guess lol

Marine Radio telephone calls? Did you strike oil in your swamp? Last I heard, going through the Marine operator was like $7/minute. Though they are funny as hell to listen to. I like when men getting drunk call home to tell their wives how much fun they are having. Not to mention the collect call charge your own carrier is going to charge you. Usually the wives end up screaming at the cost of the call and they really don't care how much fun the men are having while they are cleaning the house hahaha

If I were you, I would get the tallest tower aloud by law and establish your own ham repeater to reach the land ham based telephone service. Or join the Navy, I've heard of sailors keeping the Sat Phones.

As for taking your "Station" off the boat and moving into the house. Make a fake mast for the boat "antenna" and put the real one in the back yard. Paint it camo green. Who's going to tell them your in your dining room and not the boats galley, the pots and pans clank the same, yeah? :p


Oct 10, 2003

Far enough out and you can do Rural Radio Telephone.
But, with a gain directional beam you should be able to get a cell phone signal, offshore oil platforms use boosters and really high gain antennas, and they can be 20 miles out!
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I work the oil fields, and we set up a booster station, miles away from anything.
From no signal to full coverage.
This is the Eagle Ford Shale area.
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So we know they work.
And, you are NOT tied down to one area, you can wander around a LIMITED area, such as your house and yard.
In our case, it is about 100 feet from the booster.
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