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Old 11-12-2012, 07:33 PM
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Lotta good replies here, from some knowledgable folks.....Now, another viewpoint:

As mentioned, HAND-HELD CB's aren't really good for what you're looking for....CB's are the solution, with a little "help", such as the link below:

http://www.copper.com/cart/index.php...a092b4fb5addd2

Here's my setup in my daily-driver:

A Galaxy DX-959 AM/SSB rig:



A fairly nice Power/Echo mic:



A 4-foot Firestick II antenna:



And, the "kicker" that makes the long-range comms "good-to-go":



All of my families' vehicles have a similar setup, and we have tested these under all weather conditions, 30-45 mile comm ranges are achievable 100% of the time.....

Now, before the ARRL Crew starts flaming me, let me say that using linear amplifiers on CB frequencies IS illegal, but in times of natural disasters/emergencies, do you think that the FCC is gonna be looking for a "pirate station"? They'll have bigger fish to fry, and you can rest easy, knowing that you can communicate with your group/loved ones, WITHOUT repeaters or outside help.....I've heard all the rumors that cell phone usage is suspended during times of natural or man-made disasters in an area, and that only police/fire/first-responders will have working phones......conspiracy-theory or not, I take NO CHANCES when it comes to communications with my loved ones, or gathering intelligence.....

Be forewarned, there ARE dangers using these power levels at that frequency, but with some good training and knowledge, these dangers can be mitigated to safe levels.....As for other CB's cramming the channels with static and chatter, if you have enough power on your linear, you can blow them off the air.....set your squelch high enough, you won't even hear their puny 5 watts output, or their little "stinger boards"....

One thing you MUST make sure of when using a linear, is that your SWR (Standing Wave Ratio) is VERY low, or you'll burn out your output transistors on the linear in a hurry....check your SWR at standard power output, THEN boost the signal after you're sure it's low.....The ARRL Handbook is a GREAT source of info, that doesn't just apply to the HAM crowd.....

Finally, I do NOT use my linear amp for daily driving on the roads, the 5/12 watt limits are more than adequate for most usage......However, I test my linear at least once a week, usually in the wee hours, so as not to disturb any neighbors with my chatter, and have a firm knowledge that if needed, our comms will always be there in times of dire need....I do admit, there have been times when I was driving a lonely stretch of road at night, and some trucker had a "stinger board" on his CB (maybe 50 watts output or so), and after 5 minutes of his noisy, inane chatter, I kicked up to about 400 watts, and blew his a$$ right off the channel....

Just an alternative solution to your problem.....Let the Flames begin.....

DocZeus
Old 11-12-2012, 07:39 PM
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If one prefers to follow the laws, the amateur radio 10 meter band has similar coverage to CB. Amateur radio operators can legally use 100+ watts, with better equipment. Lots of options out there, legal and otherwise.
Old 11-12-2012, 08:16 PM
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DocZeus - I'm not flaming you, but I just don't see the sense in a $400 illegal CB setup when there are cheaper, better legal solutions.

You can find used HTX-100 10m SSB radios on eBay all the time for around $100-120. To use that radio, you just need to spend 10 hours studying the free tests at QRZ.com, pay $15, take a simple 35-question multiple choice test, and get a license. Then you can operate legally, whenever you want, and learn from and be part of a community of generally very smart and prepped people.

If your goal is to communicate, it makes more sense (to me anyway) to go the legal route and gather the skills and equipment necessary to do that effectively. If your goal is to flex your r-peen by "blowing a guy off the channel" then an illegal linear is probably the way to go. Personally, I see that as sh*tting all over the spectrum. At best it's inconsiderate, at worst its radio pollution.

Last edited by iiioxx; 11-12-2012 at 09:04 PM.. Reason: typo
Old 11-13-2012, 12:06 AM
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I am going to reintroduce the simplex repeater here.



This is my setup outside the box.

Here is the deal.you are asking too much for handhelds by themselves. The reason we use more advanced radios is the accesories. You are very limited with frs/GMRS radios.

With a small 5 watt radio and a good antenna up on a mast you can expect 20 miles in flat terrain. If you have a setup like mine, you will be able to deploy it on a mountain,like me. With that you can expect a hundred mile diameter range from the repeater.

I understand your reasoning for wanting a complete communication solution but your solution has to include a repeater as does mine.
Old 11-13-2012, 06:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ComancheSniper View Post
I am going to reintroduce the simplex repeater here.

This is my setup outside the box.

Here is the deal.you are asking too much for handhelds by themselves. The reason we use more advanced radios is the accesories. You are very limited with frs/GMRS radios.

With a small 5 watt radio and a good antenna up on a mast you can expect 20 miles in flat terrain. If you have a setup like mine, you will be able to deploy it on a mountain,like me. With that you can expect a hundred mile diameter range from the repeater.

I understand your reasoning for wanting a complete communication solution but your solution has to include a repeater as does mine.
What is the possible cost for 4 radios, the "simplex repeater" and a good antenna?
Old 11-15-2012, 01:40 AM
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Exscuse my ignorance guys but is there a fairly simple solution to portable communication when camping/hiking for say 2-4 miles? Terrain would be bush,plains and hills. Open to options, anything between $130 - $180 per unit plus any extra's is in the budget at the moment.
Old 11-16-2012, 08:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barbosa View Post
What is the possible cost for 4 radios, the "simplex repeater" and a good antenna?
You can get Boufeng (not sure of the spelling) or Wouxun 2m dual band hand held (HT) radios pretty cheap, from $50 each to up around $120 each. Add in some programming software and a cable for $40 as programming them without a cable and software is a pain. You'll also need a good antenna for the repeater radio with an adapter and cable, you could spend as little as $50 on this or as much as a couple hundred depending on how crazy you go with the antenna and cabling.

The simplex repeaters range from $60 to roughly $100 with a cable to connect to one of the hand held radios. Keep in mind unless you are setting up like CommancheSniper you will not have always on comms from the repeater, batteries only last so long.

You need a minimum of a Tech license to use these radios and repeater, but it is a good solution, I am following CommancheSniper's lead and setting up something similar.

Bottom line, if you want 4 radios a repeater and antenna setup expect to spend around $500-$600
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Old 11-16-2012, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pdiddy View Post
Exscuse my ignorance guys but is there a fairly simple solution to portable communication when camping/hiking for say 2-4 miles? Terrain would be bush,plains and hills. Open to options, anything between $130 - $180 per unit plus any extra's is in the budget at the moment.
I think your best bet is the Australian version of the U.S. GMRS. I think you guys call it "UHF CB". You will need real, 5 watt, radios not the cheap, low power bubble pack radios. I don't know what the actual legalities are in Australia. I'm sure a local ham club could set you straight. The next simplest solution is get everyone a ham ticket. If your amature radio service is anything like ours, the entry level license will be enough.
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