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Old 04-30-2019, 03:21 PM #16
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Personally I would not see the value in spending that amount of money on single band HAM radio, and not buying at least DUAL band. (2m/70cm Dual Band). I'd also encourage the adventure off-roader to get APRS.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Battle Born Offroad View Post
This is the exact system 95% off offroad race teams use for their chase trucks and base camps. It uses a Japanese made ICON radio, which is much higher quality then the Rugged stuff. Magnetic antenna and cigar power wire mean this is easy to throw in the rig for a weekend trip, and easily removed for storage.



Whether youíre part of a race team or out playing with friends the PCI Chase Package is a great way to stay in contact. Great for base camp set ups or chase vehicles. Programmed with Weathermanís Stock frequency list, or we can add your personal frequencies.

Icom F5021 VHF Mobile Radio. 50 Watts of power, 128 Channels, alphanumeric display. Complete with bracket, Hand Mic and Power cable.
No Ground Plane Antenna
Magnetic Mount coax package includes cigar power cable.

Radio Type: Mobile VHF Radio
Frequency Range: 136Ė174 MHz
Number of channels: 128 channels / 8 Zones
Current Drain: TX 50w vhf 10.0A
RX Max Audio 1.2A
Stand-by 300 mA
Power Supply Voltage: 13.6v DC
Dimensions (WxHxD) 5-29/32 ◊ 1-9/16 ◊ 6-19/32 inches.
Weight: 2.4lb
Output Power: 50w @ 13.6v DC
Supplied Accessories: Hand microphone (HM-152), DC power cable, Mounting bracket kit, Microphone hanger , Key assign sticker

PCI is not a frequency coordinator. We recommend using Forest Industries Telecommunications and they have set up a portal to obtain a license here
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Old 04-30-2019, 03:26 PM #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coyotegray View Post

There are a few older land mobile radios that are FCC type certified for GMRS and work great you can get on Ebay, etc. but if you don't want to go through the details of that then the Midland MXT400 is a good off the shelf solution.
So any handhelds that would work OK? I don't get out as often as I would like and don't really need something hardwired if I can get away with it. Mostly it will just be me and a few friends, most of the offroad groups around here use GMRS as well.
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Old 04-30-2019, 03:45 PM #18
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I never really did the GMRS thing, from what I understand you still need a licence to operate those bands.

Here is a type accepted MURS VHF radio. Inexpensive and legal way is doing it right. No licence required.

I know many that off-road and use MURS bands. For car-to-car coms, you really don't need much and its a huge improvement over CB.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...RC7F9EI2&psc=1
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Old 05-04-2019, 06:08 PM #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidR1 View Post
So any handhelds that would work OK? I don't get out as often as I would like and don't really need something hardwired if I can get away with it. Mostly it will just be me and a few friends, most of the offroad groups around here use GMRS as well.
If thats the limit of what you want to do then any GMRS radio should work...
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Old 05-06-2019, 11:46 AM #20
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Any recommendations for a handheld GMRS radio?

I go out with a group 4-5 times a year and would only use it for these trips. Unsure I want to hard wire something to the vehicle at this point, but also don't want to end up with something worthless.
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Old 02-18-2020, 01:10 AM #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coyotegray View Post
I mounted it on the back of the GOBI rack with a Diamond K540 mount.
I used the washer and nut they provided with the booster kit...
You mounted it to the Gobi rack, but does the kit include a bracket that would work on the standard T4R roof rack crossbars?
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Old 02-18-2020, 01:13 AM #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackCloud View Post
You mounted it to the Gobi rack, but does the kit include a bracket that would work on the standard T4R roof rack crossbars?
The Diamond K515S might work...
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Old 04-02-2020, 01:36 PM #23
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I wouldn't want to be left out of touch. Thank you for the theme. I've been thinking about it.
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Old 04-20-2020, 02:02 PM #24
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Thanks for all of this info!
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Old 05-21-2020, 02:19 PM #25
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Things to note:

GMRS/FRS is locked to specific channels which could get crowded (although the FCC has recently expanded the band).

HAM is not legally allowed to TX over GMRS/FRS, but CAN RX.

HAM generally has more power output (30+ watts) than GMRS and can reach out better when you have clear LoS.

Repeater advantages have already been discussed, but there's also IRLP for licensed operators to use.

I personally run a Yaesu Ft-8800R rig in my 4Skinner and carry two Yaesu VX-5R HTs for in the field work between operators.

You don't need a massively complicated set up to get the benefits of HAM. For several years, I ran one of the HTs with a Diamond antenna and a hand mic. Granted, I was maxed out at 5 watts, but with the larger antenna, I could reach out beyond the 5-7 mile range.
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Old 05-21-2020, 02:53 PM #26
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Glad you mentioned that... The IRLP / Echolink or similar functions that link radio repeater to internet IP is pretty dang useful and only expand coverage...

My wife went snowboarding few states away and there was no cellular coverage for her... no reliable repeaters between us either. Only her small VX-2R Yaesu.

Plus I had to work and couldn't not be parked near a radio.

She used a handheld into a repeater that was Echolinked, and I just used the Echolink an app on my iPhone. I could monitor and talk to that repeater in case there was an incident.
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Old 06-07-2020, 07:36 PM #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhiteBoomer04 View Post
Personally I would not see the value in spending that amount of money on single band HAM radio, and not buying at least DUAL band. (2m/70cm Dual Band). I'd also encourage the adventure off-roader to get APRS.
what does this setup cost?
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Old 06-08-2020, 11:41 AM #28
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So how many people really need to have comm for 40 miles when wheeling with friends?

Last month I went wheeling with friends and we used a mix of GMRS truck mounted radios and FRS handheld radios with zero issues. I know all the HAM guys are pounding on their keyboards saying we only had 2-4 miles of coverage with the FRS radios - but that was more than enough for terrain and highway usage we did. We had comm link between the trucks around 8 miles from first to last on the highway and close to 5 miles inside the wheeling area.

Sure - HAM setups can talk to people 50 miles away if those people are listening. Personally I only care to talk to the people in my group. GMRS truck mounted Midland radios are doing a great job at that. Between a few truck radios and a handful of cheap FRS radios we are all 100% legal (the GMRS guys have their licenses) and the FRS radios go to people without. No FCC issues and we all have a great day.

But it is not tacticool like HAM. I can live with that.
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Old 06-08-2020, 01:18 PM #29
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So how many people really need to have comm for 40 miles when wheeling with friends?

Last month I went wheeling with friends and we used a mix of GMRS truck mounted radios and FRS handheld radios with zero issues. I know all the HAM guys are pounding on their keyboards saying we only had 2-4 miles of coverage with the FRS radios - but that was more than enough for terrain and highway usage we did. We had comm link between the trucks around 8 miles from first to last on the highway and close to 5 miles inside the wheeling area.

Sure - HAM setups can talk to people 50 miles away if those people are listening. Personally I only care to talk to the people in my group. GMRS truck mounted Midland radios are doing a great job at that. Between a few truck radios and a handful of cheap FRS radios we are all 100% legal (the GMRS guys have their licenses) and the FRS radios go to people without. No FCC issues and we all have a great day.

But it is not tacticool like HAM. I can live with that.
Theoretical distance isn't a good measure. Everything is terrain dependent on all systems. I have gotten <1/4 mile in a valley and 150 miles from top of a mountain with the same HAM radio.

For simplex (radio to radio) operation, if the power levels are set to the same, and similar handheld antenna are on each setup, a HAM radio will preform near identical to GMRS or FRS.

I agree that car-to-car coms does not require much. You most certainly dont need a HAM radio.

For wheeling or road-trip with people who don't really care about radios, I use MURS. I prefer it over both FRS and GMRS.

Multi-Use Radio Service - Wikipedia

The biggest benefit is that MURS rules allows for external antennas, which makes a world of difference when operating from inside a car.

MURS is free and does not require a licence. I'ts similar to FRS without antennas restrictions and better power limits.

The benefit of a HAM radio is access to more bands, and repeaters. Equipment is also more capable and you can get crazy with antennas as well. With my ham radio I can track GPS position (APRS) of friends, text message without cellular, send data like photos, have better emergency coms using repeaters, make my own repeater using my truck radio... There are far more reasons to be a ham beyond just talking to the dude next to you. It's the most capable tool you can have in terms of radio.

Last edited by Bumbo; 06-08-2020 at 02:09 PM.
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Old 06-08-2020, 01:33 PM #30
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What Bumbo said above and thatís just a small part. One of the best things I ever did for remote adventure travel and emergency preparedness was get my Amateur Radio License...
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