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37 minutes ago, GTGallop said:

Have four radios in the home as a base station (two licenses):
1. Ham HF

2. Ham VHF/UHF

3. GMRS

4. CB

 

In the truck is an unlocked Ham Radio that does Ham (2/70/6/10) and GMRS. - TYT Quadband Radio.

 

If I had my way, Off road would convert to 6M FM Radio.  It is a FANTASTIC band for the kind of one size fits all application on the trail.  Antennas are low enough to not be an issue and it works well with tough terrain blocking it.  Then if you summit a mountain top or some high ground you get line of sight plus a little curvature to extend your radio horizon.

 

There's just one thing that makes GMRS better....  People.  No one is on 6M.  It is a ghost town despite the significantly better performance.  It does you no good to be on a trail ride and have the only 6M radio in the group.  GMRS is easy and ubiqutous.  Makes it a clear winner.

 

welcome @GTGallop!

 

i looked at that TYT briefly but ended up getting just a MARS/CAP modded iCom dual band instead somewhat recently. have you had any issues with the TYT?

 

do you still need a General level ham license to use 6M? in the past that was the reason no-one in the U.S. offroad community was on there - too much work for the average person who isn't necessarily an electronics or communications geek, but just wants to good trail comms.

 

i've heard 6M is popular with the Australian overlanders though - which makes sense considering the distances they'd need to transmit in the outback to potentially reach civilization.

 

Edited by theksmith

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The fan in the back died early on so I ordered a $12 replacement.  But the plug was different so I had to cut and solder some of the old wire on to the new fan.  The wires were so fine, something didn' take right and the replacement fan didn't work either.  Figured I'd keep running it until it dies.  That was 5 years ago.  Radio is about 10 years old now.  Been in 3 vehicles, bounced around off road in two of them.  No issues.

 

Technically speaking no - you can access 6M and 10M on a Technician License, but it is just a teency weency slice of the band and no one is on it.  Basically useless.  Best to get General anyway.  Not that hard, but yes I agree - passing two tests is too much of a barrier.

 

If I was running the FCC...

Technician would be folded in as your GMRS License (why do we need two license categories and two call signs?)

General would be all of the current 2M 70CM standard stuff plus a sizeable chunk of 6M and 10M

Extra would be all the HF stuff above that.

 

 

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Hi @GTGallop, long time no see! Hopefully see you on a trail soon.

 

My thoughts on adding in 6m is yet another antenna. Running GMRS off a dual band is already pushing against a little mismatch although it's yet to damage any of my Yaesu radios (that I've noticed). It'd be interesting to see how 6m "bends" in the narrow canyons. That's usually the only areas where I find that UHF/GMRS can start to drop coverage for any of our runs.

 

/Woody

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Hey!  Glad to see you here.  KF on here as well?

I think everything sucks in the canyons.  6M bends further over the horizon though.

Agreed about another antenna if you have many already.  Or compromising and getting a 2/70/6 triband.

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Posted (edited)

I’ve got a Midland 275 mounted in the Jeep under the dash and have a Baofeng UV-5R handheld.  I’ve also got a couple small handheld Midland radios. I used to carry a bunch because not everyone had one. I haven’t run CB in 5 years. I used to have Ham but let that license lapse as it was only used by a couple people I knew. 

Edited by ChubbyUnicornAZ

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I got a couple of BAOFENG BF-F8HP radios new in the box, I am assuming they are good for use here?

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On 12/30/2023 at 5:04 PM, GTGallop said:

Hey!  Glad to see you here.  KF on here as well?

I think everything sucks in the canyons.  6M bends further over the horizon though.

Agreed about another antenna if you have many already.  Or compromising and getting a 2/70/6 triband.

 

Yes as @CAVU2

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On 1/7/2024 at 2:35 PM, AFeiner said:

I got a couple of BAOFENG BF-F8HP radios new in the box, I am assuming they are good for use here?

 

They can be manually tuned by frequency or programmed with memory bank channels to work, yes. Depending on when the radios were manufactured, they may need to be unlocked in order to transmit on GMRS frequencies. GMRS is what most trail leaders prefer to use for caravan communications as more people have GMRS radios than have ham and ham licenses. 

 

If you want the F8HP radios programed for easy channel switching, you want this cable and CHIRP to program them, or know someone who has that setup and can program for you. You can  program the radio from the radio's keypad, but it is a mild PITA. (See "Programming a Basic Simplex Channel" at the bottom of the page.)

 

Here are the proper settings for the F8HP or any UV-5* radio in CHIRP, or for manual programming use, for all 22 GMRS channels:

ABLVV85SJZYxozy2icyrIMFTbuV18IzgvXFb3KSjqgbvfUdB43fkcOAg62bAifkY3RfVTgQDPgmk24m9jx4aBgBQNsR3Z78d2NqwC6jraAuP9Q09vIdzVWpoQaPWTY8I3UmMQ3n_NRt7DUG43VuKR8XmOyPwOw=w1067-h539-s-no-gm?authuser=0

Edited by SonoranWanderer
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2 hours ago, SonoranWanderer said:

you want this cable and CHIRP

downloaded and set.

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