cheesehead wrote: ↑
Thu Apr 12, 2018 10:24 pm
And after my troubles with the FBI, ATF, and DEA, I'm going to face "FCC Nazis" next, huh? God bless America!
We had some Canadian pilots come and visit POTM one summer. Lots of HG pilots (myself included) would camp on the South Side, near launch. The west end we reserved for the RC glider club, Silent Fliers. Most days, the middle of the day is not HG flyable there, and these Canadian visitors were just not up for the mountains of Utah (their choice, though; we did invite them along).
So, these guys got bored each day, around noon. They had a linear amp for their CB, running at illegal power levels. These clowns could "step on" a lot of of Utah CBers, with that rig. They discovered that they could lock up the controls of the RC gliders with their linear amp, and they had lots of fun crashing RC planes, costing their owners a lot of money and time.
After enough complaints, the FCC came out with their DF (loop) trucks, and located the source of the interference, with evidence suitable for court. The Canadians were still laughing it up when the tow truck pulled up, and started hooking up their custom van. They tried to force the tow truck operator to quit the hook-up, but several Federal Agents stepped stepped in, showing badges, and separated the Canadians from their van. The Canadians insisted that they had rights! The Feds agreed, but pointed out that the van had no such rights. The Canadians wanted their gliders and camping gear from the truck, but it was all confiscated as equipment used to commit a criminal act. They were informed that they could go to FCC court and try to get their stuff back, but the current court backlog then was about six months. That time would be in the middle of a cold and snowy Winter, here. A favorable outcome is not likely, in FCC court.
It was a case of childish pilots who arrived here in a $35,000 custom van, and left here in a $150,000 Greyhound bus. Those figures would be about doubled, in today's dollars.
Last I heard, for the first offense, transmitting without the correct FCC license for your frequency can be a $10,000 fine, and confiscation of all equipment used to perpetrate the offense, for each occurrence. It can go higher, if injuries or damage may be involved, or for repeated offenses. They can and do voice-print any illegal transmissions, BTW. Maybe somebody here has newer information on that stuff, but it isn't trivial. You could be surprised at what havoc your transmissions may cause, in the real world, and at the range you may have, being in the air.
Just FYI, though: you are betting your radio, your glider, cubic dollars, and maybe your vehicle against making a simple application and learning the basic rules. It's easy to be a legal FCC radio operator; you do not need to learn code, now. Feel free to make an informed choice there; I have no dog in that hunt. The FCC does not go looking for trouble, but they will respond if they (or citizens) find it.