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Emergency two-way radios for what may lie ahead Login/Join 
W07VH5
Picture of mark123
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I have a UV-5R. I should get another for the wife. If only to keep it in her car.
 
Posts: 45290 | Location: Pennsyltucky | Registered: December 05, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Savor the limelight
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by 911Boss:
quote:
Originally posted by parabellum:
Best I can say at this point is, it depends, but there's a video on youtube (which I have yet to watch) using the 8 watt version of this radio to talk from Atlanta to Seattle. I'm certain this is using a big antenna, repeater, etc.

Peer to peer, though, I don't yet know. Terrain plays a factor, of course.

I don't know much of anything yet, except that with so many of these radios produced, they're not worthless.



I’d be REAL curious to see how they are making that happen.

They used the internet. At each end, they hit an EchoLink repeater.

quote:
Originally posted by jsbcody:
Pick up the GMRS license (register, pay a fee, no test).

Para bought HAM radios. Getting a GMRS license would not apply.

quote:
Originally posted by 911Boss:
The TD-H8 … is FCC type accepted and user configurable as a dual band (VHF/UHF) HAM or GMRS radio.

The FCC specifically prohibits radios that can be user configurable to transmit on frequencies other than those the radio was type accepted for. In other words, a type accepted GMRS radio is only allowed to transmit on GMRS frequencies, a type accepted Marine VHF is only allowed to transmit on Marine VHF frequencies, etc

If you have a HAM radio that allows you to transmit on non-amateur radio frequencies (marine, GMRS, MURS, police, air traffic, etc.), then getting the license should have taught you that you are not allowed to transmit on frequencies you are not licensed for.

Back to the general topic:
Having back up communications plan is a great idea. After hurricanes, the working cell towers are jammed up and landlines are down.

We use GMRS and Marine VHF. Over open water, both handhelds are good for 5 miles to the house. Shorter if we get closer to shore because trees block LOS. We get about 2 miles inside the car to the house. Not only trees, but the vehicle itself gets in the way.

The solution is external antennas, but I have yet to do so and test it. I plan to try it next summer with the GMRS radios. Midland makes a small, self-contained GMRS repeater, but I have no simple way to get an antenna high enough to be useful.
 
Posts: 10741 | Location: SWFL | Registered: October 10, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Can someone point me to a website where I can learn basic amateur radio information? Thanks.
 
Posts: 635 | Registered: April 14, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of sigmoid
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I use the BaoFeng BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) 8-Watt when out riding with friends in our side by side.
Found it to be very reliable.

I bought a couple extra power batteries.
The only solution I've haven't come up with yet is these are eventually going to need electricity to recharge the battery?

I know, a small generator, etc. but I mean long term. Generators take fuel, blah, blah, blah.
I'm getting older, all the contingencies can get overwhelming.


________,_____________________________
We all live for a little while and then die sooner than we planned.
Your way
or
YAHWEH
 
Posts: 1290 | Location: Idaho | Registered: July 07, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of 4MUL8R
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quote:
Originally posted by xray 99:
Can someone point me to a website where I can learn basic amateur radio information? Thanks.


www.qrz.com

www.arrl.org


-------
Trying to simplify my life...
 
Posts: 5009 | Location: Commonwealth of Virginia | Registered: January 15, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of smlsig
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I have a pair of the UV-5R handhelds as well. On the suggestion of an avid Ham operator I upgraded the antenna and then had him add gmrs frequencies to it. It may be “illegal” but in a shtf scenario that’s the last thing I’m worrying about. It has worked very well when I’m off-roading with friends. On my Jeep Gladiator I hav a great Kenwood Ham radio (50 watts) that is also programmed with gmrs codes and allows a much better range.


------------------
Eddie

Our Founding Fathers were men who understood that the right thing is not necessarily the written thing. -kkina
 
Posts: 6275 | Location: In transit | Registered: February 19, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Knows too little
about too much
Picture of rduckwor
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Search for a program called "Chirp" and buy a genuine cable. Makes programming a snap.

I have had this radio and a newer one for several years. I actually bought one for each son and the next door neighbor.

I can hit our local repeater about ten miles away with it and programed the GMRS freqs in it all though it is not legal to use on those freqs due to power output.

When the balloon goes up, the FCC is the least of my worries.

RMD




TL Davis: “The Second Amendment is special, not because it protects guns, but because its violation signals a government with the intention to oppress its people…”
Remember: After the first one, the rest are free.
 
Posts: 20288 | Location: L.A. - Lower Alabama | Registered: April 06, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Tupperware Dr.
Picture of GCE61
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quote:
Originally posted by chongosuerte:
Honestly, that radio with a slim Jim antenna would be a good start.

https://n9taxlabs.com/

.



Chongo thanks for sharing that, it’s exactly what I’ve been looking for.

I’ve been using the UV-5RE for years and then the next generation the BF-F8HP. Nice inexpensive handhelds. I struggled a little with Chirp but once set up it’s cut/paste into other radios.

We also use the Midland GXT gmrs around the property to keep in touch, work very well for casual comms when you’re out of earshot.
 
Posts: 3533 | Registered: December 28, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of Steve in PA
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Second vote for Chirp. Pretty easy to use and program frequencies both Ham and GMRS into the radios.

I also upgraded the antennas on the UV-5R’s and KG-935+ to Nagoya. I have 7” and 15”.


Steve
"The Marines I have seen around the world have, the cleanest bodies, the filthiest minds, the highest morale, and the lowest morals of any group of animals I have ever seen. Thank God for the United States Marine Corps." Eleanor Roosevelt, 1945
 
Posts: 3435 | Location: Northeast PA | Registered: June 05, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Political Cynic
Picture of nhtagmember
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Kudos for getting and thinking about a comm plan.

A few things. A small handheld radio isn’t going to be the only solution. You might want to consider getting a portable CB radio as well. That will allow you to talk with a lot more people over a much wider area.

The next thing to think about is a small backup power source. A small generator like the 2000i from Honda is a great little beast. Easy to start and carry but it needs gas. Gas may not be available after a few days. So you might want to consider getting a couple of small solar panels to charge up a battery.

I have a rack of comms gear covering vhf am and fm, HF but not all will be useful. I have two radios not hooked up but one will be going in my pickup truck in a few weeks - it will do vhf and HF.

You’re on the right track.
 
Posts: 52990 | Location: Tucson Arizona | Registered: January 16, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of 71 TRUCK
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This sounds like a good idea.
Last year my cell phone provider was migrating my old phone account to a new account when they were sold. In the process it made my phone inoperable. We were told the process was only supposed to take a few minutes. 17 days later I got my phone working again.
My wife and I got rid of our house phone years ago. When this happened the only way I was able to get in touch with my wife to see if she was having problems was by email. Thankfully she had it open on her computer.
Having something like this would be a great backup if something like this were to happen again.
Her office is is about 20 miles away so I would have to find a radio that could cover that distance.




The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.

A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

As ratified by the States and authenticated by Thomas Jefferson, Secretary of State



NRA Life Member
 
Posts: 2528 | Location: Central Florida, south of the mouse | Registered: March 08, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
SIGforum's Indian
Off the Reservation
Picture of bigpond73
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Congrats para! I also have one of the same radios heading my way. Looking forward to learning more about it.

We also have many CBs and other radios around the house. We try to keep multiple options available out here in the sticks, if nothing else, so the wife and I can communicate. I have tried getting friends and other family involved in radio communications, with little success. Most just figure their cell phones will work.... Roll Eyes

I don't have the radio yet, it is the newest model, but have been reading up on it. Seems you can also "jailbreak" it, and add quite a few freqs. Although from what I am reading, may affect CHIRP programming. Anyone done that on their UV5R, and how does it affect programming?

Good luck para, I'll be learning about this radio right alongside you.


Mike


You can run, but you cannot hide.

If you won't stand behind our troops, feel free to stand in front of them.
 
Posts: 4922 | Location: Southern Colorado | Registered: January 01, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Political Cynic
Picture of nhtagmember
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The other thing that you can consider is to get a small mag mount antenna and put it on your roof. You will get better range. And if you’re really gung-ho you can get a small 12vdc linear amplifier that could boot your power output to 50W which is the legal limit.

The biggest thing to keep in mind is that absent repeaters you have to think line of sight. Driving around a big city with tall buildings you might be able to chat a few blocks away, in some cases you may have zero coverage.

Do a few dry runs just for practice.
 
Posts: 52990 | Location: Tucson Arizona | Registered: January 16, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Peace through
superior firepower
Picture of parabellum
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by rduckwor:
...buy a genuine cable.
As opposed to what? A piece of string?

This is what I bought: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08H5DS4Y3/?th=1

It ships from Amazon and not an outside vendor. Am I missing something?
 
Posts: 106949 | Registered: January 20, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Shall Not Be Infringed
Picture of nhracecraft
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I purchased Retevis RT87 Dual-Band Radios back 2020 during the 'Summer of Love Rioting' based on recommendations from the SIGforum brain trust. I also purchased high-gain antennas, spare batteries and a programming cable as well. The RT87's have an excellent build quality and reviews indicate it's an excellent performing radio. I've only used them minimally at this point, but I'm prepared should the need arise for Emergency Comms w/o availability of cellular.

These two threads were instrumental in my decision and provided a wealth of info:

https://sigforum.com/eve/forum...0601935/m/3110066374
https://sigforum.com/eve/forum...0601935/m/9850034864


____________________________________________________________

If Some is Good, and More is Better.....then Too Much, is Just Enough !!
Trump 2024....Save America!
"May Almighty God bless the United States of America" - parabellum 7/26/20
Live Free or Die!
 
Posts: 8725 | Location: New Hampshire | Registered: October 29, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
delicately calloused
Picture of darthfuster
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Coincidentally, Mrs DF and I were just discussing this topic on Friday night. Thank you for posting the link.



You’re a lying dog-faced pony soldier
 
Posts: 29516 | Location: Highland, Ut. | Registered: May 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Knows too little
about too much
Picture of rduckwor
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by parabellum:
quote:
Originally posted by rduckwor:
...buy a genuine cable.
As opposed to what? A piece of string?

This is what I bought: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08H5DS4Y3/?th=1

It ships from Amazon and not an outside vendor. Am I missing something?


Early on there were a whole slew of fake, knock-off cables that didn't work with Chirp. Frustrating to say the least for those just entering the HAM world.

If your came from a reliable radio supply house, you are probably fine.

RMD




TL Davis: “The Second Amendment is special, not because it protects guns, but because its violation signals a government with the intention to oppress its people…”
Remember: After the first one, the rest are free.
 
Posts: 20288 | Location: L.A. - Lower Alabama | Registered: April 06, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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In a true SHTF scenario you will not get in trouble with the FCC as there are exceptions in the law for such situations. However if you choose to access repeaters during normal operations you will for sure be at the very least be chided by licensed ham operators that own the repeaters and and probably located by "fox hunters" or authorities. The fines leveled for proven violations are substantial and are enforced. Get a technician license, it is not difficult (generally memorization will get you through the test) and keeps you from getting a potentially exorbitant fine for improper use. A local ham radio club will be very helpful in getting you properly licensed. These are not CB radios and are monitored. The FCC is not a group to antagonize and unlike ATF has actual reasons for enforcing the codes as violations can cause disruption of vital communications.
The main reason for the hate and discontent of the Baofeng type radios is the poor control of the frequency and splatter across second and third harmonics of the transmitting frequencies which can and does at times interfere with other legitimately operating stations. If one of these stations has to file a complaint with the FCC, you can eventually expect a visit with a warrant. Fines tend to be in the $2500 - $10,000 range and are collected.



The “POLICE"
Their job Is To Save Your Ass,
Not Kiss It

The muzzle end of a .45 pretty much says "go away" in any language - Clint Smith
 
Posts: 2860 | Location: See der Rabbits, Iowa | Registered: June 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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A Nagoya NA-771 antenna may improve your range some. I put them on mine but I have so many repeaters in the area range isn’t a problem for me so I can’t say for sure it helps with range.
However, no antenna is going to help with hills, buildings, etc. in the way. Just depends on your location.
 
Posts: 3949 | Location: UNK | Registered: October 04, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of SigSentry
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Para, thanks for the "rabbit-ears" hole. I also saw Mrgunsngear had the same deal on his Twitter account. As with most things on Amazon, I have to look at everything. I also looked at Ham vs. GMRS. Not really needing 2 radios, I decided on an 8w, usb-c, charging UV-5R version. It seemed like a decent package albeit only one radio for $31.

BAOFENG Radio, 8W Ham Radio Handheld Long Range, VHF UHF UV5R Radio via USB Charging with 3800mAH Battery, Programming Cable and 771 Antenna https://a.co/d/geC6fDP.
 
Posts: 3439 | Registered: May 30, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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