Author Topic: Radio Manual  (Read 3978 times)

Boba Fett

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Radio Manual
« on: January 15, 2011, 02:54:23 PM »
I wrote this manual for my airsoft team, who's getting into using 2-way radios for communication. I took a lot of the information I learned in classes from Civil Air Patrol, as a whole lot of it applies. For the record I am licensed to operate radios on frequencies given to the USAF Axillary, so apparently they thought I learned all this stuff. haha here it is, I hope someone finds it useful!

RADIO ETIQUETTE by Clayton Collier

   Radios are a critical part of many operations in the world, as well as airsoft. However, without rules and guidelines, radios can be ineffective and confusing. These rules and guidelines have been compiled into a non-standard set of notes known as “Radio Etiquette”. This is a personally compiled version, written by and for the Claatekk Industries Airsoft team. Let’s jump right in!

   Always wait a second or two after keying the microphone before you begin speaking. This will give your transmitter a chance to turn on before your information is transmitted.  Failure to do this results in the first word or two in of the sentence being clipped off, and can be confusing for those listening to you. Also avoid yelling into the microphone or headset, or having it too close to your mouth, as this will distort your voice. Radios work best if you speak at a volume used in normal conversation. If your transmission is broken or weak, yelling into the microphone is a normal reaction but will only make matters worse. Any information worth transmitting by radio should be relevant to the mission and understood by the recipient. Speak slowly and in plain English, without "10-codes" or jargon. Speaking slowly not only facilitates understanding of your message, but will be appreciated by anyone who may be keeping a written record of mission communications.

   Never use a mission frequency to hold a non-mission related conversation, the mission frequency must remain open as much as possible to permit the transfer of important mission-related information. For the same reason, keep mission-related communications to the minimum length necessary. Consider whether the information you are about to transmit, is really important before using up battery power to tell other operators about it. It is interesting to note that compared to just being on, a radio consumes about 6 times as much power to receive and about 50 times as much power to transmit. So it’s always a very good idea to carry spare batteries!

   The key is to avoid unnecessary transmissions. When you do find yourself involved in a lengthy dialog on the mission frequency, it is good practice to pause momentarily after every few sentences. This allows someone with really important information to break in. This new information might render the conversation in progress moot. If you need to “break” in with extremely urgent information, say "break, break, break" during a pause in the other transmission and identify yourself. Likewise, you should stop talking when you hear the three rapid “breaks”. The only thing on the frequency after three breaks should be silence, awaiting transmission of the urgent information from the operator “breaking” in.

   Use the Phonetic Alphabet, as enunciation tends to be lost on the radio and individual letters can be miss-communicated over the radio. Using the phonetic alphabet will reduce communication mistakes.

Letter    Code Word   Spoken as
A         Alpha           AL fuh
B         Bravo           BRAH voh
C         Charlie           CHAR lee
D         Delta                   DELL tuh
E         Echo                   ECK oh
F         Foxtrot           FAWKS trawt
G         Golf                   GOLF
H         Hotel                   hoh TEL
I         India                   IN dee uh
J         Juliet                   JOO lee ETT
K         Kilo                   KEE loh
L         Lima                   LEE muh
M         Mike                   MIKE
N         November          noh VEM bur
O         Oscar           OSS cur
P         Papa                   PAW paw
Q         Quebec             kuh BECK
R         Romeo           ROW mee oh
S          Sierra           see AIR ruh
T          Tango           TANG go
U          Uniform             YOU nee form
V          Victor           VIK tur
W          Whiskey           Wiss kee
X          X-Ray           ECKS ray
Y          Yankee           YANG key
Z          Zulu                   ZOO loo

   Use the Phonetic Numbers as well, so understanding is better, just like the letters. Use these when transferring more than three numbers in a row(BY THEMSELVES), or when radio interference makes understanding difficult. Before saying a line of numbers by themselves, say the prep word “Numbers-”, immediately followed by the numbers themselves.

0   ZERO
1   WUN
2   TOO
3   TREE
4   FO-WUR
5   FIFE
6   SICKS
7   SEF-IN
8   ATE
9   NINER

   Use standard expressions. Using standard expressions reduce the amount of time transmitting on frequencies and reduces confusion. It is critical to memorize these terms, as well as their contexts(see examples)!

Expression      Meaning
Go Ahead   Pass your message, I’m listening
Copy           Your Message was received and understood
Say Again   Retransmit your last sent message
Standby   Your message acknowledged but I am unable to reply or deal with it at this time. Will resume communication momentarily.
Affirmative   Yes
Negative   No
Over           My message is finished, I’m waiting for reply
Out           Conversation finished, I’m leaving
Do You Copy   Do you understand, please acknowledge
En Route   Resources heading to incident
Unreadable   Used when your signal I received is unclear or not understood
Disregard   Don’t pay attention to my last message
Correction   I made a mistake in what I’m saying, correction following immediately
Fire Inbound   Fire support is heading towards the designated position

Codename   Meaning
Tango   Enemy
Package   Important object(I. E. VIP or document)
POI           Point(location) of interest
LZ           Landing zone, or point of insertion

EXAMPLE SECTION

   Here is a sample section for comprehension of the previously covered material. The “characters” are Big Dog, the base, Katana, the fire support, and Tornado, a ground team. Pointers are in parentheses.

This is Big Dog to Katana, come in, over.

This is Katana, go ahead, over.(notice the over after go ahead)

Are you in fire support position? Over.

Affirmative. Grid coordinates Bravo-five-six. Over.

Good job, Katana. Stay on alert do you copy? Over.

I copy, over.

Big Dog out.(notice that usually the party who called first ends the transmission)

Katana out.

Tornado to Big Dog, come in, over.(notice that “this is” is not required)

This is Big Dog, go ahead, over.

We have reached the LZ, permission to insert into mission? Over.

Permission granted, good luck, over.

Thanks, Tornado out.

Big Dog out.

(Time passes)

Tornado to Big Dog, we have contact! Over!

This is Big Dog, be advised that there is at least one enemy vehicle in your immediate vicinity! Over.

Thanks for the tip Big Dog. Tornado out.

Big Dog out.

Tornado to Katana, come in, over!

This is Katana, go ahead. Over.

We need immediate fire support at coordinates Lima-seven-two! Over!

Fire inbound to coordinates Lima-seven-two, over.(notice how the receiver of information quickly repeats the information)

Good shooting, Katana. Tango vehicle destroyed. Thanks, Tornado out.

You’re welcome, Katana out.

(Time passes)

Tornado to Katana, come in, over.

This is Katana, go ahead, over.

We need a spread of fire from coordinates Oscar-four-three through Quebec-six-five. Correction, Oscar-four-three through Romeo-six-two. Do you copy? Over

Copy that, Tornado. Coordinates Oscar-four-three through Romeo-six-two, fire inbound. Over.

Break! Break! Break! Big Dog to Tornado! Package is in danger of destruction, get in there now! Over!

Copy that Big Dog! Going in hard and fast! Continue fire support Katana! Standby Big Dog! Over.

Copy that! Big Dog standing by, over.

Katana out.

We have the package and are heading to extraction. Current coordinates November-five-seven. Over.

Say again, over.

We have the package and are heading to extraction. Current coordinates November-five-seven. Over.(notice he repeated his last message as closely as he could remember)

Copy that, Tornado, transport is en route to extraction. Over.

Good deal, Tornado out.

Big Dog out.

(Time passes)

Big Dog to Tornado, come in over.

This is Tornado, go ahead.

What are your coordinates? Over.

We are at coordinates Golf-six-niner, over.

Hold your current position, transport en route to coordinates Golf-six-niner, over.

Holding our current position, over.

Be advised, previous extraction point was compromised, Big Dog out.(notice that unimportant information is left out until after the orders are issued)

Good call Big Dog, Tornado out.

Big Dog to Katana, come in, over.

This is Katana, go ahead Big Dog. Over.

We need fire support at previous extraction point, grid coordinates Uniform-one-eight, over.

Fire support inbound to coordinates Uniform-five-five, over.

Disregard, over!(notice how he cancelled his whole last message just to make the correction)

Copy that, over.

Grid coordinates Uniform-one-eight, over.

Fire inbound to Uniform-one-eight, over.

Thank you Katana, Big Dog out.

No problem, Katana out.

Big Dog to all units. Mission is successful, good job. Return to staging area. Big Dog out.(if sending a notice to multiple operators at once, always end the message with “out”, if they have questions they can call you)
« Last Edit: January 16, 2011, 12:27:44 PM by Joe »

Joe

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2011, 12:29:15 PM »
Stickied.

If more folks followed this then radios would actually be useful.

Good work, Boba Fett.
Joe
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Dragon

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2011, 01:34:47 PM »
At one time, I was a radio stickler ... mostly because I would get frowned at by HAM operators if I was "radio incorrect". 

 Since my years in the actual army, where unlike the movies portray, not everyone has a radio, is trained to use a radio ( beyond a 2 hour class on one in basic. ) ... and most of the forces don't properly use one either. 

 Still, ... we use the radios out on the field.  Mostly I use my admin radios to communicate from one team to the other. 

 Rarely we get to use our radios as a "team" or mission radio.  Most of that is because, .. I would have to carry two radios, or get a brand where you can easily save channels and frequencies to switch back and forth quickly.  I'm fine with doing either, it's just not been practical yet.

 We do use a more relaxed com speak out on our field... but the rare times we get to use actual team comms, we do stick to more "official" methods for clarity.

 I find having, even just admin radios, very useful. 

 This was a great article, mind if I copy paste it for our guys on D-9?

Joe

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2011, 06:23:29 PM »
Dragon, I have no problem with that.  I can't speak for Boba Fett. 

It's these sort of articles that improve the sport as a whole.

Now, if we can just get players to turn off the VOX!

My two cents.

Joe
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Renagade

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2011, 08:22:07 AM »
Can Copy this over to Midmos Forum My players need this LOL

Boba Fett

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2011, 12:32:45 PM »
As far as copying goes, you guys can copy and post(lol) as much as you like, just give me and my team credit. thanks!

Yeah I went to 3 two hour classes in CAP, and did 3 exercises, 2 field, one was a practice run. I still don't know why they qualified me. haha

Shaggy

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2011, 01:12:15 PM »
Haha Bobba it was probably because you know what you are doing. The services barely get taught radio etiquette unless you are an RO. I think we got one class that if I wasnt asleep for was maybe an hour or less. Very nice article you but together. I especially liked the mission and how you put in key notes. Very useful intel.
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Boba Fett

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2011, 09:17:06 PM »
Yeah I've never been very interested in writing stories and such, but every time I have, people say it's good. lol

I think they certified me since I could pass tests and such in a breeze, and wasn't bad at drill, and was good at doing what I was told and going above and beyond and such, but couldn't for my life run the mile in time! ha, so I only got promoted once. :/

Reverandff7

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2011, 01:27:22 AM »
Ok thats just insane... but i will say buba ... your starting to become another dragon im proud of you... i love you guys
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Renagade

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2011, 09:00:05 AM »
*hands Rev a tissue* Its ok dude they grow up so fast!

Boba Fett

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2011, 11:26:07 AM »
lolz!!! Yesterday a friend said something about the Civil War and got a bunch of facts messed up, then asked some questions...and when I was done answering he says "Man you've done your homework haven't you?" hahaha

Reverandff7

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #11 on: January 18, 2011, 12:20:23 PM »
lolz well then sounds like your researching pretty well.
Travis Perry
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Boba Fett

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #12 on: January 18, 2011, 03:03:47 PM »
Yeah but I only studied the CW from the time I was 8 till I was 12. read every book the library had actually. lol then from 10 to 14 it was WWII and WWII aircraft. And from 13 to 16 it is modern infantry systems.

Princess

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #13 on: January 18, 2011, 03:38:45 PM »
I am 2 credit hours away from a Minor in History, mostly on Civil War and Cold War. Based completely on Incoming credit hours.
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bgallion

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Re: Radio Manual
« Reply #14 on: February 21, 2011, 02:42:30 AM »
Just a few suggestions about the Radio Etiquette post.

Suggestions for calling a station follows:
When calling a station, you want to make sure that everyone in your group is using the same procedure/ Format.  Boba's example had the calling station identifying themselves then who they were calling.  Boba used the same format throughout his examples.  That's great.  For demonstration purposes, maybe later, a team member identifies the station they were calling and then themselves.  Then there may be a slight confusion on who was calling who.  Bare with me.  Say you are walking through the brush or in a fire fight and your mind is on other things.  Then all of a sudden something come in on the radio.  All you remember is hearing two names, come in, and over.  If you have a SOP of which one comes first you know can identify who called and who they are calling even if you didn't here the entire transmission.  Maybe all you hear is, "Katana, Big Dog, come in, over."  Previously the calling station identified themselves first.  So you may think Katana is calling Big Dog.  However, the actual transmission was, "Katana, this is Big Dog, come in, over."  See where the confusion may come in?  This is why it is important to discuss what format you wish to use with your "team"

My second suggestion is using the following format for calling a station.  In the following Alpha 47 is the calling station and Bravo 24 is the recipient.  

"Bravo 24, Bravo 24 this is Alpha 47, over."

Let me explain myself.  You repeat the station you are calling twice. Why? Because it may have been an hour since your last radio chatter.  All of a sudden you hear chatter, and by the time your brain catches up you have only heard "... this is Alpha 47, over."  By repeating the station you are calling you clarify who needs to be listening to the message.  You hear,  "Bravo 24... (wait, what was that? I wasn't expecting radio chatter right now and didn't catch that) Bravo 24, (oh, they said Bravo 24.  That's me! I need to pay attention) this is Alpha 47, over."  See my reasoning?  Using this format, the unit the message is intended for is identified from the very beginning.  But wait, was that our name? Yes it is because I just heard it again. Now I know I need to listen to this.  Make sense?

Going back to the other format... "Big Dog to Katana, come in, over."  Look at it from Katana's side.  Blah Blah Blah, radio chatter, Radio chatter all day long never talking to us.  All of a sudden they get the previous transmission and what they hear is "Blah Blah Blah Katana (wait!!! was that us?) come in, over."  Now they have no clue who is calling them.  Or if it is them that is actually being called.  What if they just thought they heard their name?  Now they have to spend time confirming who called them AND if it was actually them who was called.  This may not seem like big problems but they can blow up fast in the field.  Here, Katana was so bored by the radio traffic throughout the day that they started to not pay attention as closely as before.  However, when they heard "Katana"  then they were like, "Oh hey! That's us, we need to pay attention.  Problem is... they missed the entire first have of the transmission.  Catch my drift?


Just a simple suggestion for all of you.  Disregard if you wish.


 

« Last Edit: February 24, 2011, 12:17:48 PM by bgallion »
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