Maybe someone can educate me.
If the band goes to 14350 KHz, then contesters can just set their dials to that frequency and operate- right? Wrong! The crux of the matter is found in FCC rule 97.307, which reads in part: "Emissions resulting from modulation must be confined to the band or segment available to the control operator."
What must be taken into consideration is the fact that the frequency displayed on the radio's digital display is the carrier frequency. A suppressed-carrier single-sideband signal is considered to be 3 KHz wide. So, for an USB signal to be confined to the 20 Meter Amateur band, the frequency displayed on the transceivers digital dial should not be higher than 14347. That may even be too close unless the transmitted signal is attenuated by at least 40 dB at 3 KHz. Of course, the same goes for a LSB signal transmitted near the lower end of a band or segment. Please see illustrations A and B below for help visualizing the situation.
347 14350 353
A. USB signal transmitted with dial frequency of 14350 KHz.
147 7150 153
B. LSB signal transmitted with dial frequency of 7150 KHz.
So, the fellow telling all the contesters that they were out of band was right! But, is it a big problem? Obviously more education is needed on this particular rule. In the 2001 ARRL DX phone contest one Dx station was heard running US stations on 14349 KHz. in excess of 5 hours straight with a steady stream of US callers. Most were Extra class licensees.
Although certainly the majority of these callers didn_t realize they were violating an FCC rule, the action could result in an FCC warning, ARRL OO notice, or perhaps an argument from a frustrated fellow contester as mentioned at the outset of this article. Since all contesters who submit a log sign a statement that they have followed their country_s Amateur regulations they should be willing to take this rule into consideration and modifying their operation as needed.
In addition, contesting ethics are involved. What if a station finds a clear running frequency by operating too close to the band edge, while his competitor perhaps fails to find a run frequency out of respect for this regulation? Or what if a multiplier is counted by working a station calling too close, while other stations don_t get the multiplier because they want to obey the rules? Perhaps such situations are part of what causes our mystery stations to vent their frustrations.
I hope you find this article of help in your contesting efforts. Further information about this particular FCC rule can be found on page 4-34 of the ARRL_s "FCC Rule Book." See you in the contests.
****This information was copied not of my creation
People don't see that on the lower edge because that is CW and Extra only at that. What the software does not do is adjust limits based on your class of license. However, the same principles apply.
Not at all. I am aware however, that if I drive the speed-limit I am the slowest car on the road.
It should be incumbent upon the amateur operator to uphold the license acknowledgments and agreements they have made, and to monitor their operating frequency, operating spectrum, and operating procedures.
The manufacturer does not know my intent. It is not illegal to use USB/LSB close to the band-edge if I, as the operator, understand the bandwidth of my mode of operation (that may not be the human voice). Flag a warning. Illuminate something in RED, but do not enforce an inalterable restriction.
Perhaps, there is a new and general awareness of the very limited technical demands we now make upon holders of an amateur license, and a sense that they must be protected from themselves?
My thoughts? Start considering raising the bar ... and making greater demands of the licensee.
San Juan Island, Wa.
Just keep making the radios legal. As far as cars go I guess the scofflaws haven't heard about yellow light cameras, where if you blow a yellow light you get a $150 citation every time I drive under those overhead data links on the toll road that collect my transponder data I wonder when a citation is going to be coming. There is nothing stopping the FCC from automating band edge analysis and cranking out tickets
And, I truly believe Walt's idea/suggestion about further restrictions imposed by license type is absurd.
Flex should build radios, and amateurs should operate them according to the restrictions of their license.
PS - although I don't know for a fact, I suspect FRS' decision at least in part emerged from the patchwork of worldwide regulations concerning out-of-band emissions, spurious signals, etc., that if unchecked, would make certifying an amateur transceiver quite difficult in some jurisdictions. A line/policy should exist at the manufacturer level to ensure their product can be sold legally in as large a market as possible.
So, as much as I don't like the restrictions I can work with them as implemented. Texans being able to walk into my restaurant with a gun on their hip as I dine with my family? Not so much ...
On the other hand, on 40/80/160 meters, if you are using Lower Sideband, then you must watch the lower frequency limit of your authorized phone privileges. For US Extras, that lower limit is 7125 MHz. That means that if I am 3K wide I cannot tune and operate below 7128 MHz and be legal. I have had debates with a few Extras that should know better. In fact there are a few people I have observed on 7125 running Upper sideband, not seeming to understand that it is just the same as Operating LSB at 7128.
Now I am sure that most of us have had an occasional "oops" moment.
One of the last DX contests, I almost did. I had hit the CTL>RT button combo to move to the next spotted contact and started to transmit, but luckily the Flex kept me from doing so. Then I looked at the frequency readout and discovered that it was out of band. He was on 14.348 USB and out of band. So I brought out the "secret weapon." I changed my TX High Cut to 1900, which kept me in band and snagged the guy. On my way out of the contact, I reminded him that he was out of band (his signal was certainly wider than 2 KHz) . Then I just hit my Contest Profile tab and moved on to the next station. Brick wall filtering saves the day!
Was this legal? I assume that MY signals were. The other station...Probably not!
Will that contact be disqualified? I don't know. I hope not, because it was a rare multiplier.
Some contest auto scoring routines will automatically disqualify contacts that were out of bands, but I don't know how they account for bandwidth. This is probably why many people commonly use the standard 3 KHz figure.
Ken - NM9P
6500 v. 1.6.17
This argument also applies to CW. The rate-of-change front and rear end keying slope also creates sidebands which are visible with the flex super fine display. I recall, also as a teenager, working DX on 7.000.050 (after very careful Xtal calibrator calibration against WWV) without realizing my CW sidebands were out-of-band.
I am known to be argumentative, so:
FRS, do you restrict CW within the band edge accounting for the speed setting (which changes the rise time). I know, how many angels dancing on the pin head are acceptable.
P.S. I agree with the FRS limits but perhaps a TX setup option with 3 selects: 1) Enforce 2) Relax with warning 3) Ignore within radio final safety. That would cover amateur service with/without MARS type services and light commercial.
XVTR is not restricted
I do agree with Steve that Flex limiting my out of band transmissions is not a bad thing.
When working S&P in contests there are always Mults right at and beyond the band edges.... In the heat of a contest... one rarely checks one's own frequency...so with our K3 for IC-7800 or example i can easily make the mistake of responding where I should not be responding..
Of course, those Q's don't count...which wastes time..... and reduces our rate....(BTW.. absolutely NO FUN winning anything by cheating) ... Using my 6700 in those same situations, it suddenly does not transmit...so I am forced to look at the frequency to adjust it to make a legal Q.
HOWEVER..... the band edge restriction does not work for the Mode Segments... So If I were working a SSB contest and a Mult was at 14.147 USB... i can still inadvertently transmit on his frequency in SSB.. and waste a Q.
If you are going to enforce band edges - you really need to add Mode
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