|Scouts BSA Radio Merit Badge|
Good Operating Practices
Be prepared - Think about what you are going to say before transmitting.
Be trustworthy - Take care of troop radios and return them in the same condition they were issued.
Be loyal - Keep your antenna in a vertical position and elevate it to improve signal strength. If you are in a structure, try moving near an open window or moving outdoors to improve signal strength.
Be helpful - Press the push-to-talk button and pause one second before speaking. There is a short delay before your radio begins transmitting. Pausing will prevent your message from being cut off.
Be courteous - When initiating a transmission, first identify your intended recipient then identify yourself. This avoids confusion on shared frequencies. Example: “Jill this is Jane, do you copy?”
Be kind - Give the person you are calling time to respond. Remember, they may have heard your call and are unable to respond immediately.
Be thrifty - Use short, clear, and concise messages over the radio to save battery life. Repeat essential parts of the message to help make sure it is understood. Keep your radio on and monitor for safety, accountability, and patrol/troop messages.
Be clean - Speak across the radio microphone rather than directly into it in order to produce a clear undistorted message.
Mayday - Used as a distress call in an emergency situation. When used, repeat three times: mayday, mayday, mayday.
Correction - I made an error in this transmission. I will continue with the last correct word.
Radio check - This means, “What is my signal strength and readability?” Responses include: “Loud and clear” (or 59), “Weak but readable,” “Weak and distorted,” “Strong and distorted.”
Over - I have finished speaking.
Say again - Please repeat your last message.
Stand-by - This means, I acknowledge your transmission. Please wait for me to respond.
Go-ahead - I am listening and can respond. Please proceed with your message.
I spell - Say this prior to spelling a difficult or ambiguous-sounding word.
Read back - Please repeat my entire transmission back to me.
Roger - Message received and understood.
Affirmative / Negative - Yes / No
Out - Our conversation is finished.