Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Talk about airplanes! At last count, there are 39 (and growing) FAA certificated S-LSA (special light sport aircraft). These are factory-built ready to fly airplanes. If you can't afford a factory-built LSA, consider buying an E-LSA kit (experimental LSA - up to 99% complete).

Moderator: drseti

User avatar
RyanShort1
Posts: 154
Joined: Tue Aug 17, 2010 9:40 am
Location: Burnet / Austin, TX
Contact:

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby RyanShort1 » Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:34 pm

Just an FYI - a number of times the students I fly with in the Apollo Fox have used "light sport" and the controllers have confused it with "Life Support" - and the ensuing confusion isn't too great. Top that when we call it a "Fox" - they think we're a helicopter.

Ryan
Independent Flight Instructor at http://www.TexasTailwheel.com. Come fly tailwheel LSA's.

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 6221
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby drseti » Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:50 pm

I've had radar controllers ask if my SportStar was a helicopter, but I suspect that's because my groundspeed was so slow they thought I was hovering. :)
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof H Paul Shuch
PhD CFII DPE LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC iRMT
AvSport LLC, KLHV
fly@AvSport.org
AvSport.org
facebook.com/SportFlying
SportPilotExaminer.US

ct4me
Posts: 335
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 7:46 pm
Location: Phoenix, AZ

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby ct4me » Wed Apr 10, 2013 7:00 pm

speaking of that... I've always wondered: What sort of radar blip does a mostly-composite LSA give? Compared to larger spam cans... how about a weight-shifter, or powered parachute?
Tim
-----
check out CTFlier.com

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 6221
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby drseti » Wed Apr 10, 2013 7:16 pm

Tim, in much of the airspace I fly, primary radar echoes are nil. ATC depends upon transponder returns.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof H Paul Shuch
PhD CFII DPE LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC iRMT
AvSport LLC, KLHV
fly@AvSport.org
AvSport.org
facebook.com/SportFlying
SportPilotExaminer.US

Flim63
Posts: 16
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:10 pm

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby Flim63 » Wed Apr 10, 2013 8:44 pm

Surprisingly, my Rans with some sheet aluminum but mostly tube, gives a good primary return to airport radar. I was 20 miles out and heard them calling traffic to a mooney on me as I was monitoring them.

jnmeade
Posts: 536
Joined: Tue Nov 30, 2010 8:58 am
Location: Iowa

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby jnmeade » Wed Apr 10, 2013 9:47 pm

drseti wrote:"November Six Six Alpha Victor" conveys no useful information whatever, just clutters up a busy Unicom frequency with nine meaningless syllables.


The FCC says:

47 CFR § 87.107 Station identification.

(a) Aircraft station. Identify by one of the following means:

(1) Aircraft radio station call sign.

(2) Assigned FCC control number (assigned to ultralight aircraft).

(3) The type of aircraft followed by the characters of the registration marking (“N” number) of the aircraft, omitting the prefix letter “N”. When communication is initiated by a ground station, an aircraft station may use the type of aircraft followed by the last three characters of the registration marking.

(4) The FAA assigned radiotelephony designator of the aircraft operating organization followed by the flight identification number.

(5) An aircraft identification approved by the FAA for use by aircraft stations participating in an organized flying activity of short duration.

The rule with amateur radio operators is to give your call at the beginning and end of a discussion/conversation and at least every 10 minutes during. If I were to apply that rule, I'd at least use my N number the first time I transmitted and maybe the last.

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 6221
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby drseti » Wed Apr 10, 2013 10:24 pm

That ten-minute identification is an FCC rule, that applies specifically to licensees. In the early 1980s (shortly after he fired all the nation's air traffic controllers), Reagan pushed hard for deregulation. One result was elimination of the FCC licensing requirements for aviation. Since we are no longer required to have FCC station licenses for the aircraft or FCC radiotelephone operator permits for ourselves, we are no longer subject to FCC rules. Of course, 87.107 which Jim cites is still applicable whenever station identification is required (i.e., for communications with ATC), but I believe in the non-towered environment it does not apply.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof H Paul Shuch
PhD CFII DPE LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC iRMT
AvSport LLC, KLHV
fly@AvSport.org
AvSport.org
facebook.com/SportFlying
SportPilotExaminer.US

jnmeade
Posts: 536
Joined: Tue Nov 30, 2010 8:58 am
Location: Iowa

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby jnmeade » Wed Apr 10, 2013 10:53 pm

§ 87.18 Station license required.
top

(a) Except as noted in paragraph (b) of this section, stations in the aviation service must be licensed by the FCC either individually or by fleet.

(b) An aircraft station is licensed by rule and does not need an individual license issued by the FCC if the aircraft station is not required by statute, treaty, or agreement to which the United States is signatory to carry a radio, and the aircraft station does not make international flights or communications. Even though an individual license is not required, an aircraft station licensed by rule must be operated in accordance with all applicable operating requirements, procedures, and technical specifications found in this part.

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 6221
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby drseti » Wed Apr 10, 2013 11:23 pm

This about § 87.18 from a post on airlinepilotforum.com (not necessarily authoritative):

It's a FCC rule and not a FAA rule, a FAA inspector could care less.


This seems to be the attitude of about everyone I've ever talked to about this. Of course, the radio station license and operator's permit are still required for international operation, but since this is SportPilotTalk.com, and Sport Pilots are generally restricted to flying in the US...

BTW, if you have an FCC license, the FCC can enforce part 87. But part 87 applies only to licensees, so if you aren't FCC licensed, it had no teeth (and, as stated, the FAA doesn't really care).
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof H Paul Shuch
PhD CFII DPE LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC iRMT
AvSport LLC, KLHV
fly@AvSport.org
AvSport.org
facebook.com/SportFlying
SportPilotExaminer.US

jnmeade
Posts: 536
Joined: Tue Nov 30, 2010 8:58 am
Location: Iowa

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby jnmeade » Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:28 am

drseti wrote:Sport Pilots are generally restricted to flying in the US...


And Bermuda (although we could start an entirely new thread on how no one checks the license so why bother to get one - in some people's opinion). Actually, some countries check and some don't. Canada doesn't and we don't, but we can on the way back in if we want to. Other countries check every time.

What is so hard about saying airplanes are granted a station license by FCC rule when operating in the U.S. but need a specific license form the FCC when going international?

BTW, if you have an FCC license, the FCC can enforce part 87. But part 87 applies only to licensees, so if you aren't FCC licensed, it had no teeth (and, as stated, the FAA doesn't really care).


Your interpretation is directly contrary to the FCC statement in part 87.18 which says the station will be operated in accordance with the rules. The FCC can take action against anyone on the air with or without a license. Pirate broadcasters find that out routinely and you see it in the ARRL reports on FCC actions against hams who operate out of band, for example.

What I find interesting is that sometimes we CFI's promulgate concepts to our students without giving the full background. Maybe it's easier that way.

So, we say, "you don't need to use your call sign when you're not talking to ATC" and the student believes us and it becomes gospel. In fact, what we could be saying is "the FCC requires us to use our call sign when we transmit on the air. The FAA doesn't enforce that and many pilots ignore it when not talking to ATC" but this leads into some long discussion about "should I" "what if" and so forth so CFI's eventually just resort to the simpler, inaccurate but generally acceptable version of teaching the practice rather than the rules.

That is my point. Don't feel I'm being holier than thou - I do it my way when it comes to traffic patterns and some find my practices abhorrent, but I don't care. I obey the patterns rules as they are written rather than as they are taught and practiced and many don't like that.

Another good example of CFI's teaching selectively is radio procedure. ATC calls "traffic two o'clock 3 miles" and what do the vast majority of pilots respond? "Looking". Most say that as fast as they can, some actually do look and then say it. Why? Because the pilot is concerned that ATC knows the pilot is taking the situation seriously and is being a good team member by participating in the concern over where everyone is. Does ATC care if the pilot is "looking"? Absolutely not, or at least not to a very great extent. What does ATC care about? ATC has some separation rules. ATC acknowledges two replies. "Traffic in sight", which ATC likes because now you are responsible for your own separation and they can go roll a joint, or "Negative contact", to which ATC responds with (sotto voce) "damn - I have to keep an eye on those two". ATC has more onus on them if one or more of the targets is IFR, and of course all pilots are required to see and avoid. My point is, here is another example of something that has no official status ("looking" is not in the glossary) but pilots act as if it has a meaning other than what it really has and that can't be good because it means pilots don't understand what is going on as far as ATC expectations are concerned.

So, how does ATC take "looking"? Well, you can say this shoots my whole argument because if it's not "traffic in sight" ATC has to take is as "negative contact" and act accordingly. My point is the pilot is mislead as to what is going on and why. What do I say? I take a look in the direction ATC indicates and respond either "traffic in sight" or "negative contact". Everybody is happy.

OK. It's your turn. This is your site and you get the last word.

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 6221
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby drseti » Thu Apr 11, 2013 12:45 pm

jnmeade wrote: OK. It's your turn. This is your site and you get the last word.


It's not really my site, Jim; I'm just the moderator. But, I will respond, because:

(1) it's fun discussing these matters with someone as knowledgeable as you
(2) this might be instructional for others on the forum
(3) often, these discussions are instructional for me.

However, this will probably be my last word on the topic, only because we're both guilty of thread drift. :oops:

As for FCC, the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, gives the FCC the authority to create and issue licenses, create rules applicable to licensees, and to enforce those rules. Case law has held that the FCC is empowered to enforce those rules only on licensees. In the case of the pirate radio operations you mention, enforcement can't be done by FCC, but rather has to be pursued by the US Attorney's offices. FCC typically turns those cases over to federal marshals, if they are serious enough. Ham operations out of band are prosecuted by FCC because the perpetrator holds an FCC license. Bootleg operations in the ham bands by non-licensees are prosecuted not by FCC, but rather by the US Attorney.

With respect to aviation radios in particular, there have been a few cases of deliberate interference that were considered safety of flight issues, that were then successfully prosecuted not by FCC or FAA, but by the FBI, under a completely different set of rules. (Shining laser pointers at airplanes also falls within this area, I believe. It's a safety issue, but not an FCC or licensing one).

As for terminology, I know the pilot-controller glossary is supposed to be binding upon ATC personnel, but I doubt that it is applicable to pilots, and I know of no cases where a pilot was ever cited for improper terminology. These guidelines are intended to ensure clarity and understanding, and thus promote safety. Yes, "looking" is not in the glossary, but it's generally understood, and indicates safety awareness. "Tally ho" is military terminology for "traffic in sight", is not official, but is generally understood (as are "bingo fuel" and a bunch of other militarisms). When we cancel IFR, the controller usually says "squawk VFR, frequency change approved, good day." That "good day" is not in the glossary (neither is my usual response of "thanks for the service") but is polite common practice, and does nothing to compromise safety. No controller ever got reprimanded for saying "good day". No pilot ever got cited for "looking".

So, getting back to the traffic pattern at non-towered airports, is "blue light sport on downwind" wrong? According to the pilot-controller glossary, probably. Does it promote safety? I maintain that it does. Does it reduce frequency congestion? Probably. Will the FAA or the FCC cite you for improper procedures? I rather doubt it.

International flight: yes, ICAO requires radio licenses. Sport Pilots can currently fly LSAs to the Bahamas (but not to Canada or Mexico), but need a radio station license and operator's permit to do so. The Bahamian government is happy to have you, and glad to sell you their $12/gallon avgas. Does anybody ever check radio licenses? Well, I was only ever asked once to produce mine. That was on a trip into Mexico in 1984. (Since the person asking was wearing a big sombrero, twin pistoles, and crossed gunbelts, I didn't argue with him...) Neither FAA nor FCC seems to care, but if the federales do, you'd better have them aboard.

I now return you to your regularly scheduled thread topic. Frequency change approved. Good day.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof H Paul Shuch
PhD CFII DPE LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC iRMT
AvSport LLC, KLHV
fly@AvSport.org
AvSport.org
facebook.com/SportFlying
SportPilotExaminer.US

Flim63
Posts: 16
Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2013 12:10 pm

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby Flim63 » Thu Apr 11, 2013 5:31 pm

Actually, I do know of one controller that was written up for "good day". But he was guilty of a myriad of bad habits and bad phraseology was one they wanted to gig him on. Even I had it noted on an over-the-shoulder I get twice a year. (supervisors hate sending up a "no deficiencies noted" as it makes them look like they aren't looking hard enough).

User avatar
drseti
Posts: 6221
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:42 pm
Location: Lock Haven PA
Contact:

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby drseti » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:06 pm

Flim63 wrote:Actually, I do know of one controller that was written up for "good day".


As Wallace Shawn's character said in Princess Bride, "Inconceivable!"
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof H Paul Shuch
PhD CFII DPE LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC iRMT
AvSport LLC, KLHV
fly@AvSport.org
AvSport.org
facebook.com/SportFlying
SportPilotExaminer.US

User avatar
designrs
Posts: 1485
Joined: Wed Sep 23, 2009 9:57 pm

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby designrs » Sat Apr 13, 2013 8:22 am

Flying in DC SFRA we use "Piper Sport" + N number. Then we got a newer "Sport Cruiser" and SFRA was like, "What type of plane is that?" From then on it was better to use "Piper Sport" for SFRA radio communications... although our SFRA flight plans are "CRUZ" and my IACRA for checkride will be "SP-GEN-AP". Talk about an identity crisis!!!

"Luuuucy I'm home!" would be much easier! :lol:

cpubiz
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Mar 22, 2013 7:11 pm
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Re: Your Callsign--How do you announce yourself?

Postby cpubiz » Mon Apr 15, 2013 2:40 am

Hello from Los Angeles. New member here and soon to be flying a Flight Design CTLS Light Sport Aircraft. After reading all the posts in this topic, everyone seems to be saying that absolutely none of those descriptive words means beans to a non-sportpilot controller or Flight Service person. Probably true for now.

I am leaning toward identifying my type as C172 for now, until FAA adds the proper code. Yes, it's a lie. But -

1. My plane will fly the C172's speeds, altitudes, and patterns in general.
2. My plane size is close enough to a C172 if you don't look to hard.
3. My plane has high wing configuration like the C172.
4. Any controller instantly knows where to sequence the C172 for traffic flow, landing, taking off, approach, departure, enroute.

If a tower or ground controller is really going to call me out for this, I can't see why from a standpoint of safety, recognition, efficiency of communication, and plain old simplicity.

I'm proud of my Flight Design CTLS Light Sport Aircraft but in this highly complex space of Los Angeles and surrounds, I may decide to sacrifice my pride and pretend to be a well-known C172 for all the forgoing reasons. After all, I'm still the guy who gets to fly it! :D


Return to “Light Sport Aircraft”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests