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Circuit calls


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I was taught to give accurate concise calls in the circuit and elsewhere. For instance calling crosswind, I was taught to call as you enter crosswind flying over the runway or inline as you fly an extended centreline. 

Gives me the irrits when people call crosswind and are still 4 miles from the airfield. Your looking around where expecting the aircraft to be and their still miles out!

Another is calling final, other day I heard somebody in an RAA aircraft call joining final then giving an estimate of 8 minutes before they arrive!!!! Some of the less professional (Not Eastern) RPT call final 20 miles out and expect priority over somebody doing circuits. 

Not so good is also people keying the mike then thinking what they have to say with great pauses between information.

Another variation on that is the "Release under pressure" call with words blending into one long continuous unintelligible blurb.

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As I approached the top of the strip about to call downwind, when a Texan with instructor and trainee called 'Final' as they were climbing out and passed me .. I issued one fairly pointed question  "Final?"..

Never saw then again while I was there....

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Poor or inappropriate radio procedures is a constant issue in CTAF and it is not helped by Instructors not making correct calls either. How is the student supposed to know the correct call if the instructor doesn't make them?

 

My training was all in controlled airspace and back in those days 4 decades ago gaining my PPL also meant being issued a FRTO (Flight Radio Telephone Operator) licence. Because you are communicating with the tower you have to get it right and read back instructions.

 

In CTAF there are no mandatory calls other than to avoid a collision. There are recommended calls though and there are good booklets supplied free by CASA called "Be Heard, Be Seen Be Safe". I got a bunch of these and supplied them to pilots at our aerodrome. Our people are pretty good but we get plenty of visitors who have no idea of appropriate phraseology and then foreign students who have such a poor command of English that their calls are largely unintelligible. That was one bonus of Covid, the lack of foreign students.

 

When I am flying and I hear the REX 20 mile inbound it is clear concise and I know exactly where they are, where they are going when they will be there and the altitude. For many other inbound private flights it is either a guess or there is missing information. Some don't even seem to know what "say again your last message" means or there is complete silence.

 

Then there is the pilot who likes the sound of his own voice and provides a whole lot of useless information including the history of the flight. I don't care where you have come from, if you are going somewhere else later and what your actual heading is to the last degree and how many passengers you have plus other useless information.

 

Just "ABC traffic, Cessna XYZ, one zero miles North, 2000, inbound, ETA two five, ABC" is everything till you make a 1500 foot overhead call with joining details. Then it is circuit calls if there is other traffic. If there is none just land.

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2 hours ago, kgwilson said:

Just "ABC traffic, Cessna XYZ, one zero miles North, 2000, inbound, ETA two five, ABC" is everything till you make a 1500 foot overhead call with joining details. Then it is circuit calls if there is other traffic. If there is none just land.

I use that except at the end instead of ETA two five, ABC  I say the name ABC two five

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26 minutes ago, Student Pilot said:

I use that except at the end instead of ETA two five, ABC  I say the name ABC two five

The location is supposed to be the last thing in the call. Probably doesn't make much difference in practice, but if you are going to pick on other peoples calls you should make sure your own are correct.

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50 minutes ago, Student Pilot said:

Correct in whose eyes?

UUhh...Airservices Australia & CASA?

The AIP [ENR 1.1-51.9.1.13] says:

Quote

The standard broadcast format is:

a. [Location] Traffic

b. [Aircraft Type]

c. Callsign]

d. Position/Level/Intentions

e. [Location]


And the CASA VFG says:

Quote

Broadcast – must include:
Location ‘traffic’
Aircraft type
Callsign
Position/intentions
Location


If you want to argue they're wrong, fill yer boots! I'll watch....

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This new video by Stefan Drury - along with its (ongoing) Comments section - is apropos.

(Watch on YouTube to see the Comments.)

 

 

 

(Another good argument for [affordable] universal ADSB CDTI IMHO  ;- )

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Garfly
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The one that gets me is when people do an inbound call from a non standard distance without an ETA. I get the non standard distance bit, that happens a lot at our airfield because our CTAF overlaps another one. It's the lack of an ETA that annoys me. I always set my GPS up on my way home with a simple GoTo. It then gives me my ETA which I use with my inbound call and it tells me when I'll be in circuit. Then I hear someone in a plane whose speed I don't know say “I'm over Jumpinpin inbound…” when I call them and ask for an ETA I invariably get something like “Oh, about 3 minutes from now”, and it looks like I'm 3 minutes from circuit entry. So now I've got to try and spot them, hoping their position call was accurate.

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A very timely thread; it’s almost two years since Covid stopped long trips. Skills are getting rusty.

I haven’t flown our of our valley in that time. That means no flight planning, just wandering about enjoying the view and almost no traffic to worry about.

 

 

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I have always found the calls require to make sense and it pays to make less calls and look out better. What is annoying me now is that when Airservices were told of our airstrip they decided to rename it. The correct name according to Airservices is Iveragh. On the map it is adjacent to a spot called Rods bay and the YIVG is further away from the location than Rods Bay.

Now according to Airervices the rename was to bring it into compliance with ICAO, but then they explain that it doesn't comply with ICAO. Now I have to listen to at least 3 different pronunciations of Iveragh and people still calling it Rods Bay.

We are right at the edge of Gladstone 118.8, but use 126.7 and then area frequency 119.55. We really need to listen to all 3 to know what is around and of course the choppers dash about everywhere with no calls at all on any frequency.

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On 19/12/2021 at 2:03 PM, Yenn said:

and of course the choppers dash about everywhere with no calls at all on any frequency.

 

My friend Mark Is on a direct line from Canberra to Jervis Bay (Albatross). He regularly complains of Defence choppers overflying his strip at 500ft with no warning via radio. Un-nerving and dangerous. Defence almost get away with every stupid thing in the book (recall that a defence chopper knowingly started a bush fire in the Namadgi NP, "forgot" to report it till post landing at Canberra 45 mins later) This fire burnt 85% of the park plus some rural houses. No apology just business as usual.

 

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On 19/12/21 at 1:03 PM, Yenn said:

I have always found the calls require to make sense and it pays to make less calls and look out better. What is annoying me now is that when Airservices were told of our airstrip they decided to rename it. The correct name according to Airservices is Iveragh. On the map it is adjacent to a spot called Rods bay and the YIVG is further away from the location than Rods Bay.

Now according to Airervices the rename was to bring it into compliance with ICAO, but then they explain that it doesn't comply with ICAO. Now I have to listen to at least 3 different pronunciations of Iveragh and people still calling it Rods Bay.

We are right at the edge of Gladstone 118.8, but use 126.7 and then area frequency 119.55. We really need to listen to all 3 to know what is around and of course the choppers dash about everywhere with no calls at all on any frequency.

😠

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5 hours ago, Methusala said:

 

 

Back in the early ‘70s the Army had the same attitude.  We used to take our LARC Vs out under  the pretext of doing the monthly ‘water test’ so we would go fishing off Cronulla Beach near a Bombora at the eastern end.  This day we decided to head up the George’s River off Botany Bay and due to some pi$$ poor navigation, we ran aground on some Oyster Beds 🙂 

This guy came at us in his boat and abused us to the max…..so we simply said ‘send the bill to Army HQ they will cover it’ and away we went, nothing more said……

 

1155F952-A05E-4E47-97BB-6FB70BED4586.jpeg

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Why do you have to give your callsign in the circuit? I reckon " Jabiru turning left finals for 18 Edenhope" says it better.

Actually, only once have I ever had another aircraft anywhere near, and this was a croppie who was miles away. So nobody has ever complained.

Who would have time to look at callsigns ? Why would it matter what the callsign was if you hit him?

Well Dad I might be, ( of Dad n Dave fame ) but I have flown in busy circuits.  So I would add " Number 3 behind a Cessna and another Jabiru " if it helped.

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4 minutes ago, Bruce Tuncks said:

Why do you have to give your callsign in the circuit? I reckon " Jabiru turning left finals for 18 Edenhope" says it better.

Actually, only once have I ever had another aircraft anywhere near, and this was a croppie who was miles away. So nobody has ever complained.

Who would have time to look at callsigns ? Why would it matter what the callsign was if you hit him?

Well Dad I might be, ( of Dad n Dave fame ) but I have flown in busy circuits.  So I would add " Number 3 behind a Cessna and another Jabiru " if it helped.

Edenhope Traffic first allows someone at Natimuk on the same frequency to relax, and people already in the circuit to add an alert to their brain.

"Jabiru" tells them its RA, probably white and hard to see, but most importantly coming downind at around 100 kts, so if you're on late downwind you can bump the throttle and make a bit of space, and do each of your trasmissions a bit faster. That was if he's running wide and fast he not going to come in  and hit you just as you are turning base. 

"2312" separates you from the other Jabiru in the circuit, or the one you hear calling inbound as you are descending on to base. As much as you may never have seen another one in your life, it's in your routine when you fly to Mount Gambier for lunch and there are three Jabirus in the circuit.

There's only one final.

Edenhope Traffic at the end confirms which airfield you're at just in case you are one of the many who starts talking first then presses the button.

From what I have to listen to it seems about half of RA don't have their radios set up correctly, (the truckies below are much clearer). Earthing, Wiring, connections are a job for a day when you have plenty of time and somone listening out; part of that testing should include some distance checks. It's quite common to hear just blips followed a few minutes later by more blips, followed a few seconds later by broken words, followed a few seconds later by " ......inbound 5 miles.................."

This is where the correct phonetics and formal order copmes into its own.  There's no time and it's bad procedure to say "G'day mate,  having some trouble with your radio" because you might just be chopping off an inbound call from a Q-Link or heavy helicopter and you REALLY need to know where they are.

 

Ed brrp brrrp can still be identified by the syllables compared to Hbrrp brrp for Horsam or Brp BrrpBrrpBrrp for Mount Gamber.

BrrpBrrpBrrp for Jabiru can be separated from BrrpBrrp Cessna and so on

 

If each call is given at the correct location, you get a picture in your head to be able to separate yourself from each one and either speed up if that will fix a conflict or slow down if you are going to be on the same circuit as a smaller aircraft which you know has slower circuit speeds. You can do this sitting on the common circuit path with throttle and flaps, and I've been on full flaps and a lot of throttle many times - on one day No5 on final, ro you can do it by extending the leg, so if you are in a Baron for example on crosswind you can extend the downwind turn and the base turn and you'll have put some space behind the slow guy. Things like Drifters and Thrusters souldn't be slowing you up because they should be travelling in the 500' circuit, but you will meet up with them just as they turn final and on the last section of final. Unfortunately some don't follow the rules.

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I agree once you arrive and are established in the circuit things can be shortened especially if there are several aircraft in it at the same time. When I know the other aircraft & pilots I just call "Turning base for 08" & "Short final 08". Everyone knows exactly where you are and who you are. At low level you transmissions don't travel that far. We do have Grafton Airport only 7NM away so if there is activity there I  always make sure the location is transmitted at the beginning & end as normal.

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There can be quite a few "finals" at aerodromes especially for first time visitors. Even when "Final for 18 " is lined up to land on another runway. You may get the odd reciprocal landing down wind. A Glance at the Compass would sort that out. Nev

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51 minutes ago, facthunter said:

There can be quite a few "finals" at aerodromes especially for first time visitors. Even when "Final for 18 " is lined up to land on another runway. You may get the odd reciprocal landing down wind. A Glance at the Compass would sort that out. Nev

Given that the thread is titled "Circuit Calls" are you suggesting a person should call "Finals" and not the official "Final" because he could be about to land on 18, or another runway, or even on the reciprocal?

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1 hour ago, turboplanner said:

Edenhope Traffic at the end confirms which airfield you're at

At the end it's just "Edenhope" not "Edenhope Traffic". Lots of people do it, it doesn't matter, but if you're going to nitpick final vs finals...

 

The format is:

- who is this transmission intended for:

"Edenhope traffic"

(used to be "All stations Edenhope")

- Your type & call sign

"Jabiru 1234"

- details i.e. position/height/intentions etc

"Turning base runway 36 full stop"

- location

"Edenhope"

 

I think the location was added to the end when the format was changed from "All stations...." because the location became the first word and was likely to be clipped by people who start talking before they push the button.

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