Author Topic: Trail Comms - Recco's?  (Read 3697 times)

Offline R3

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #75 on: October 16, 2020, 10:41:43 AM »
What radio do you use for GMRS?
What features do you like about it?
What do you not like about it?
What do you wish it had?

If a dual band radio covers vhf and uhf, can't you use it for gmrs (which is a uhf) also?

My primary coms  are  VHF with alternate  GMRS(UHF)  Base for VHF is Rugged Radios RM60 with  R5 Handheld from RR.  handhelds are dual band.
The handheld is a great radio.
- Small package with the ability to grab and go for spotting or recovery operations.
- Dual band with  the addition of the hand mic/speaker  I can  clip the radio to my belt and mic to my  shirt leaving both hand free.
- Range is good 3-5 miles
- clear comms with low interference  squelch is set at 2 on a scale of 1-10
- Battery life is  good for  most of a day if used as primary comms  a spare battery or larger  capacity  is needed.
- cost is comparable to a current CB with antenna


Bought a Midland GMRS base with a lo profile 3dB antenna.
- Issue, with the RM60 there is no place to mount it  without going on the dash or overhead.
- Like the fact it is a 50W radio from a reliable manufacture.

Wish it had..... Base dual band

https://www.ruggedradios.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=2972

Why?  One unit  covering both  UHF and VHF frequencies.  Seriously looking at upgrading to  this. Work on both Digital and analogue as well as dual band. 

UHF/VHF radio (dual band)  Yes it can be used for  GMRS if frequencies are programmed in.  My  handhelds are  programmed for both  VHF and UHF operation and  when on UHF  i run GMRS frequencies.
Cheers

17 JKURR
2013 Victory XCT hot rod.

Offline JustOnlyME

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #76 on: October 16, 2020, 08:02:32 PM »
The dual band base unit allows transmit, not just listen, on GMRS?
 It looks like there are wattage restrictions on some GMRS freq?
I dont see a wattage for the RR unit you linked to.
When you program the GMRS frequencies do you program the wattage output while using those frequencies too?

Offline R3

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #77 on: October 19, 2020, 08:15:17 AM »
The Rugged Radio  set come pre programmed.
Cheers

17 JKURR
2013 Victory XCT hot rod.

Offline Nacho

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #78 on: October 19, 2020, 08:57:19 AM »
Jumping with my .02 cents a little late....but I just added GMRS and concur that it is night and day better than CB.  I bought the midland GMRS and have two small handhelds. 

Pros:
  • Clarity-  it is so much clearer and easy to understand
  • Handhelds- as Rob mentioned, I have the handhelds which are very inexpensive and great for someone in the group without a radio and for spotting
  • Price- seems to me there are actually more inexpensive GMRS options than CB....the license is $70, but good for a decade!
  • Size-  the radio is much smaller and has more mounting options

I cant speak for VHS as I have no experience yet, but I am 100% on GMRS over CB.

 :tu

Offline spnkzss

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #79 on: October 19, 2020, 11:12:00 AM »
Learnin' 'bout GMRS.  Came across this decent read.  Figured I'd post for others.

https://jeepjamboreeusa.com/cb-replaced-by-frs-gmrs-two-way-radios/
Rob
'94 YJ  |  4.5" RC Lift  |  33"  | SYE |  4.56 Detroit TruTrac Front/Rear

Offline R3

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #80 on: October 20, 2020, 08:20:03 AM »
While back  tried to bring this up to leadership and see if there was interest in switching to a more modern  comms  system.  At that time there was  huge pushback.  looks like  today there is interest. Perhaps this could be brought up at a club meeting and discussed and  develop a way forward.  I have discussed  group buys with  Rugged Radios in the past.  a discount is available to clubs.  I am sure that other companies would  be interested in working  a group buy as well. 

GMRS is a easy  course to go thru and licensing is cheap at $70.00. ( we spend more for farkles on our Jeeps each month).  Set up and operation is fairly straight forward as well.  some basic rules need to be followed with installation to get  optimal performance out of the  UHF platform.

The Handheld units are  excellent for spotting and recovery  operations.   in spotting   new members  can be coached thru a particular technique and  with a calming voice can be guided thru most difficult challenges. During recovery operation  especially more difficult event  clear comms is a key to a successful recovery.

Digital comms are now  becoming  more mainstream.  Rugged Radios has a good  description on  what  the pro's and cons are for digital comms.  their  dual band sets  can operate on either  digital or analogue  so talking to legacy systems in not an issue.

At the end of  the day there is always a group that pushes the envelope and is looking for a better way, as well as the group that is very happy  with what they are comfortable with.

Cheers
Cheers

17 JKURR
2013 Victory XCT hot rod.

Offline R3

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Cheers

17 JKURR
2013 Victory XCT hot rod.

Offline Squints

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #82 on: January 20, 2021, 07:13:17 PM »
OK so I need a little education here.

Currently I just have a CB, but I have been following y'alls discussion and been thinking I wouldn't mind getting some of the 2-way walkie talkies which I believe are GMRS, yes???
But then I looked into the BaoFeng UV-82HP that someone mentioned somewhere.  It mentions only UHF and VHF, but is my understanding right that GMRS is UHF?

Squints - Mike
2010 Wangler Mountain

Offline zuke

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #83 on: January 20, 2021, 08:57:16 PM »
OK so I need a little education here.

Currently I just have a CB, but I have been following y'alls discussion and been thinking I wouldn't mind getting some of the 2-way walkie talkies which I believe are GMRS, yes???
But then I looked into the BaoFeng UV-82HP that someone mentioned somewhere.  It mentions only UHF and VHF, but is my understanding right that GMRS is UHF?

Squints - Mike

Yes, the UV-82HP can be programmed to do GMRS, FRS, Weather Radio, FM Radio, and Ham Radio (Plus other things that will get you in trouble with the FCC if someone complains)... Which makes it kind of in a gray area as to it's legality, and easy to use in an illegal manner..

That said, I use both UV-82HPs for my self and my wife, and UV-5Rs for 'Hand Out' Radios (Programmed to FRS Channels) for comms in impromptu wheeling groups.
John
2020 JT Sport S
2015 JK Rubicon
2015 JK Unlimited Sahara
2006 TJ Rubicon
1999 TJ HC Wheeler
1998 TJ SE

Offline Gr8Dain

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #84 on: February 20, 2021, 03:41:52 PM »
Well, I just registered on the FCC site and paid my GMRS licensing fee.  It has not gone down yet.  Still $70.  And no call sign yet.  I wonder how long that will take.  It is pending so, I should be good to use it tomorrow, right?  Sure.
Dain

1984 CJ-8 Scrambler
3.5" lift
DD and trail toy

1949 CJ 3a - Stock - Garage queen

Offline DC

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #85 on: March 03, 2021, 10:22:40 AM »
My recommendation is to go with a dual band baofeng uv-5r, that way you get gmrs, frs, and amateur/"ham"  uhf/vhf.

 I'd go with 5r over other baofeng models because you don't get much at all going from 4 to 8 watts (or 4.5 to 7), your real world range isn't really going to change by more than 5% or 10% at most, and you can either get a pair of 5R for the same money, or use the savings for an external antenna.

Our real problems in general are:
1) antenna mount points and types on wrangler are rabbit holes of bad choices;
2)  GMRS is preferred over ham because of licensing considerations -- but on the east coast is paucity of GMRS repeaters.

As far as amateur "ham" bands here are my observations:
95% to 99% of off road trail riders/overlanders/campers/hikers using ham bands for excursion comms are not licensed. Your risk of an enforcement action using it while moving around is below trivial. Really the main advantage of ham bands over gmrs bands is the number of ham repeaters.  and using repeaters without a call sign is problematic.
Much more egregious than the very very common using ham unlicensed, is, licensed or not, stepping on the wrong frequencies

GMRS license are just a registration and fee. Ham licenses involve a knowledge test. If you had electronics shop as a kid, especially if you are old enough to have done so before the proliferation of integrated circuits, and already know ohm's law and can identify a diode and a resistor a circuit schematic , you will need maybe five hours of study to take the basic level "technician" license test with high level of confidence in passing. If you don't know what those are,  and for example my wife and kids do not, you are going to need a fair amount more study.

The good news is baofengs are programable. Just go to YouTube and watch a few videos on: chirp programming a baofeng. This way you can use it in the programmed mode and make reasonably sure that you and anyone you hand it too is using it on bands allowed. Even if you don't have a ham license to begin with, and are only using it for gmrs initially, you may well find you would like to get into and onto ham, and at some point get a license.

I did want to mention one other thing I saw in the thread: people discussing grounding. "Electric grounding" is very different from RF grounding and "bonding." For example just running a from elsewhere on the body to your tailgate or hood might give a more consistent electrical ground, say for lights, etc. But that is not an RF ground, and for some types of antennas you need an RF ground.


Offline gravitywell

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #86 on: March 05, 2021, 06:42:24 AM »
My recommendation is to go with a dual band baofeng uv-5r, that way you get gmrs, frs, and amateur/"ham"  uhf/vhf.

 I'd go with 5r over other baofeng models because you don't get much at all going from 4 to 8 watts (or 4.5 to 7), your real world range isn't really going to change by more than 5% or 10% at most, and you can either get a pair of 5R for the same money, or use the savings for an external antenna.

Our real problems in general are:
1) antenna mount points and types on wrangler are rabbit holes of bad choices;
2)  GMRS is preferred over ham because of licensing considerations -- but on the east coast is paucity of GMRS repeaters.

As far as amateur "ham" bands here are my observations:
95% to 99% of off road trail riders/overlanders/campers/hikers using ham bands for excursion comms are not licensed. Your risk of an enforcement action using it while moving around is below trivial. Really the main advantage of ham bands over gmrs bands is the number of ham repeaters.  and using repeaters without a call sign is problematic.
Much more egregious than the very very common using ham unlicensed, is, licensed or not, stepping on the wrong frequencies

GMRS license are just a registration and fee. Ham licenses involve a knowledge test. If you had electronics shop as a kid, especially if you are old enough to have done so before the proliferation of integrated circuits, and already know ohm's law and can identify a diode and a resistor a circuit schematic , you will need maybe five hours of study to take the basic level "technician" license test with high level of confidence in passing. If you don't know what those are,  and for example my wife and kids do not, you are going to need a fair amount more study.

The good news is baofengs are programable. Just go to YouTube and watch a few videos on: chirp programming a baofeng. This way you can use it in the programmed mode and make reasonably sure that you and anyone you hand it too is using it on bands allowed. Even if you don't have a ham license to begin with, and are only using it for gmrs initially, you may well find you would like to get into and onto ham, and at some point get a license.

I did want to mention one other thing I saw in the thread: people discussing grounding. "Electric grounding" is very different from RF grounding and "bonding." For example just running a from elsewhere on the body to your tailgate or hood might give a more consistent electrical ground, say for lights, etc. But that is not an RF ground, and for some types of antennas you need an RF ground.
You need to figure out what Part those radios are certified with, and stick to the bands they're certified to be used for.

Just because radios can be programmed to use various frequency bands, doesn't mean they should.

Sent from my HD1925 using Tapatalk

2018 2 Door Wrangler JK - Willys W

Offline R3

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #87 on: March 05, 2021, 07:17:08 AM »
My recommendation is to go with a dual band baofeng uv-5r, that way you get gmrs, frs, and amateur/"ham"  uhf/vhf.

 I'd go with 5r over other baofeng models because you don't get much at all going from 4 to 8 watts (or 4.5 to 7), your real world range isn't really going to change by more than 5% or 10% at most, and you can either get a pair of 5R for the same money, or use the savings for an external antenna.

Our real problems in general are:
1) antenna mount points and types on wrangler are rabbit holes of bad choices;
2)  GMRS is preferred over ham because of licensing considerations -- but on the east coast is paucity of GMRS repeaters.

As far as amateur "ham" bands here are my observations:
95% to 99% of off road trail riders/overlanders/campers/hikers using ham bands for excursion comms are not licensed. Your risk of an enforcement action using it while moving around is below trivial. Really the main advantage of ham bands over gmrs bands is the number of ham repeaters.  and using repeaters without a call sign is problematic.
Much more egregious than the very very common using ham unlicensed, is, licensed or not, stepping on the wrong frequencies

GMRS license are just a registration and fee. Ham licenses involve a knowledge test. If you had electronics shop as a kid, especially if you are old enough to have done so before the proliferation of integrated circuits, and already know ohm's law and can identify a diode and a resistor a circuit schematic , you will need maybe five hours of study to take the basic level "technician" license test with high level of confidence in passing. If you don't know what those are,  and for example my wife and kids do not, you are going to need a fair amount more study.

The good news is baofengs are programable. Just go to YouTube and watch a few videos on: chirp programming a baofeng. This way you can use it in the programmed mode and make reasonably sure that you and anyone you hand it too is using it on bands allowed. Even if you don't have a ham license to begin with, and are only using it for gmrs initially, you may well find you would like to get into and onto ham, and at some point get a license.

I did want to mention one other thing I saw in the thread: people discussing grounding. "Electric grounding" is very different from RF grounding and "bonding." For example just running a from elsewhere on the body to your tailgate or hood might give a more consistent electrical ground, say for lights, etc. But that is not an RF ground, and for some types of antennas you need an RF ground.
You need to figure out what Part those radios are certified with, and stick to the bands they're certified to be used for.

Just because radios can be programmed to use various frequency bands, doesn't mean they should.

Sent from my HD1925 using Tapatalk

Rugged Radios ran into this as well. it caused a stir  with the FCC and users not knowing what they were doing.  Rugged  pre programs frequencies ( Mostly west coast race  teams etc) and doesn't unlock the programing of their radios.  This is nto to say they are not programmable.  Rugged will also  program a channel or channels  for a club if so desired.  NOVJ Pri, NOVJ alt, were proposed a while back....

Cheers
Cheers

17 JKURR
2013 Victory XCT hot rod.

Offline DAMTALL

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #88 on: March 17, 2021, 08:52:04 AM »
I have a CB radio and like to use it while on road trips (comes in nice in Western PA on the Turnpike).  I am thinking about GMRS for Camp Heep this year.  Would something like this from Midland work for my limited off-roading?

https://midlandusa.com/product/gxt1000az-two-way-gmrs-radio/
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Offline BLACKHAWKJEEP

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Re: Trail Comms - Recco's?
« Reply #89 on: March 17, 2021, 05:22:18 PM »
I have a CB radio and like to use it while on road trips (comes in nice in Western PA on the Turnpike).  I am thinking about GMRS for Camp Heep this year.  Would something like this from Midland work for my limited off-roading?

https://midlandusa.com/product/gxt1000az-two-way-gmrs-radio/

Yes, it definitely will work and in my opinion, it is clear and works great. I prefer handheld over everything because I am usually out of the vehicle assisting, plus its affordable. Lasts very long before needing to re-charge.
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