Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

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  1. #1
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    Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    I've noticed lately ATC not using "Cessna" when calling me on the radio during flight following. I'm expecting to hear "Cessna 1234...", but instead I keep hearing "November 1234..." I understand that the controller may not remember I'm a Cessna, but in busy airspace, it really helps me to hear my callsign. Don't they write down C172 on their data block when I tell them I'm a Cessna 172? Why do some controllers use "Cessna 1234" and others consistently use "November 1234". I even tried responding "Roger, Cessna 1234" a couple times, but controller kept referring to me as "November 1234." Was he just overloaded? Or is that how it is nowadays? It seems to me that in the 90ies, controllers went out of their way to include aircraft Make.

  2. #2
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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    November 1234 is totally legal to say. I always teach to use the make/model aircraft.
    It's usually enroute facilities that use November, but its use has been spreading into the terminal world. I think it's just being lazy.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    At the center, we don’t look at the strips where your type acft is listed. We would have to push a button off our keyboard or look at the strip off our scope to see your type. November is the easiest and most efficient way to call you. Many times when a November callsign isn’t working, I will see the type and use that, then they usually answer.
    With 15+ November callsign acft on my scope, it is unreasonable to expect me to remember the types of all.
    When I was at approach, we were taught Skyhawks, debonair, queen air, ect. Center stresses it much less.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    This is very helpful! I've only been in control towers where they have actual paper data strips with the type of aircraft written right on it. I didn't realize it was different in a Center.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    Quote Originally Posted by j_time41 View Post
    At the center, we don’t look at the strips where your type acft is listed. We would have to push a button off our keyboard or look at the strip off our scope to see your type. November is the easiest and most efficient way to call you. Many times when a November callsign isn’t working, I will see the type and use that, then they usually answer.
    With 15+ November callsign acft on my scope, it is unreasonable to expect me to remember the types of all.
    When I was at approach, we were taught Skyhawks, debonair, queen air, ect. Center stresses it much less.
    Your datablocks at the Center doesn't show a C172 or a A320 by default?

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    Cause I always call a Mooney a bonanza and vice versa

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    Quote Originally Posted by Devil07 View Post
    This is very helpful! I've only been in control towers where they have actual paper data strips with the type of aircraft written right on it. I didn't realize it was different in a Center.
    It's not. At towers and approach controls, we don't always use strips, and almost never look at the strip to get the type aircraft (unless you're working ground control.) The datablock shows the aircraft type right on the radar display. Centers are the same way.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    I almost always say N1234 because if the time share doesn't match my speech rate, I am not looking at your type aircraft and I am not going to delay all my transmissions to wait for the time share to flip back. November is your callsign and you should be listening for it.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stinger View Post
    Your datablocks at the Center doesn't show a C172 or a A320 by default?
    In the 4th line the destination being displayed is required. If there is a speed or heading assigned, this takes the place of the destination. There is no way to only allow type to be displayed continuously, if at all, constantly in the 4th line. We have to press another button on a seperate keyboard to see type acft on the 4th line, then when we let off the button, it goes back to the destination (or heading or speed, depending if they have one).
    I have no idea what kind of plane any airliner on my scope is either, only time I use this button is for issuing traffic advisories.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stinger View Post
    It's not. At towers and approach controls, we don't always use strips, and almost never look at the strip to get the type aircraft (unless you're working ground control.) The datablock shows the aircraft type right on the radar display. Centers are the same way.
    If approach shows acft type continuously on the data block, or even with a timeshare, centers are different. The only way the see type acft is to hit a quick look button on the DIK, (yea, it’s really called that, it’s a little other keyboard with a few buttons), look at the strip if you aren’t a high sector, or look at your edst.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    Quote Originally Posted by j_time41 View Post
    If approach shows acft type continuously on the data block, or even with a timeshare, centers are different. The only way the see type acft is to hit a quick look button on the DIK, (yea, it’s really called that, it’s a little other keyboard with a few buttons), look at the strip if you aren’t a high sector, or look at your edst.
    Strange....on enroute Falcon replays it shows the aircraft type.
    At terminal facilities the type aircraft time-shares with the speed.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    If you hear anything out of me but the last three, I've already tried to reach you twice.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stinger View Post
    Strange....on enroute Falcon replays it shows the aircraft type.
    At terminal facilities the type aircraft time-shares with the speed.
    You are correct, on falcon it displays that only in enroute. Not the same as on the floor.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    Quote Originally Posted by lowapproach View Post
    If you hear anything out of me but the last three, I've already tried to reach you twice.
    This... i use November up until I have to repeat myself and I use full C/S and A/C type. After that, I move on cause I’m apparantly not important. I don’t care if you’re blowing thru final lmao
    Last edited by SPOONY90; 08-07-2018 at 09:14 PM.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    If using November instead of Cessna is causing you to miss calls, you need to practice your radio skills.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    I do need radio practice! I admit it, but I'm trying to get better on the radio. I can't always afford to fly, but I've been listening to liveatc.com, etc, and I've visited my local tower to ask questions and learn as much as I can. I've been a pilot for a long time, but I also spend a lot of time in uncontrolled airspace (talking to myself . So my ears are rusty. However, my point is that when I used to fly in controlled airspace in the 90ies (Socal), it seemed that controllers were very good (and consistent) at always calling aircraft by their type, especially us little puddle jumpers. I agree, I should never miss a call. I understand that November1234 is perfectly legal, but Cessna1234 is best practice, its more professional IMO, but I could also say if you can't remember the type or use all the information available to you, maybe you need to practice your controller skills.

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    Quote Originally Posted by Devil07 View Post
    I do need radio practice! I admit it, but I'm trying to get better on the radio. I can't always afford to fly, but I've been listening to liveatc.com, etc, and I've visited my local tower to ask questions and learn as much as I can. I've been a pilot for a long time, but I also spend a lot of time in uncontrolled airspace (talking to myself . So my ears are rusty. However, my point is that when I used to fly in controlled airspace in the 90ies (Socal), it seemed that controllers were very good (and consistent) at always calling aircraft by their type, especially us little puddle jumpers. I agree, I should never miss a call. I understand that November1234 is perfectly legal, but Cessna1234 is best practice, its more professional IMO, but I could also say if you can't remember the type or use all the information available to you, maybe you need to practice your controller skills.
    Spot On!!

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    I love that you're here looking for answers. That's awesome. I wish more pilots would seek to know us better, either through forums or visiting facilities. That relationship is HUGE.

    That said... what the person said about the timeshare in the data block is spot on. If I'm working a busy push, feeder/final combined with no assist, a VFR trucking through my airspace is probably lucky not to be terminated. I spend about half a second on each data block with every scan, and if your type isn't up when I look at it, you're getting a november. Even if it is, you're probably still getting a november. And like someone else said, if you get a type or a full call sign, I can assure you it is at LEAST the third call and it's IMPORTANT. When you request services, that puts a responsibility on us. It's a responsibility we take very seriously. Keep practicing, keep working at it, keep asking questions. We sincerely appreciate the effort and it will only make you better!

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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    I disagree that November is not best practice in center. In approach, yes, not en route. Very few controllers care what you are in center, much less call you by it. That’s just the way it is. Respond to November, makes everyone’s life easier.

  20. #20
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    Re: Why ATC Doesn't Use Make when Calling Anymore?

    I use all the information I need, which is that your callsign starts with November. Only ones I call Cessna are C525’s cause they should feel bad.

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