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Old 03-08-2019, 01:12 AM
Jamesconn Jamesconn is offline
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Default Trying to learn about radios

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I know 0 about radios. I would like to get a couple handheld radios and a CB radio for my truck. I have a few family members scattered over town and another about 41 miles away. I know 41 miles is a bit of a stretch, but I would like an alternative form of communication. Phones dont always work especially in disasters. I had an epiphany recently I was pretty much buying a bunch of gun crap tellin myself I was "prepping" but in 99% of scenarios guns wouldnt help that much. Water, food, and communication are pretty important too. I guess I could set up a more powerful station in my house but I am not too sure about anything. Ive looked up some radios on the internet but I dont want to buy blindly with no knowledge whatsoever.

What is the max distance I can expect out of a handheld, truck radio, house system?

I have no idea where to start any info would be helpful.
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Old 03-08-2019, 02:21 AM
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You will get a bunch of advice to get a ham license, and that is fine. But it won't get you communicating with family unless they are inclined to get a license which is rare,

I recommend the GMRS service. It is a high performance UHF radio service where you can run up to 50 watts, wideband FM. It is much more private than 27 MHz CB and has tone squelch so you don't hear others. It is a licensed service. A 10 year license that will cover you and your family, cousins included is $70 for 10 years. 2 cents a day. There is no test, you can apply on line and have a license assigned in 24 to 48 hours.

The radios run from cheap junk at Wal-Mart, combo FRS/GMRS radios that will work at most a mile, despite the package saying 32 miles. Then cheap Chinese Radios like Baofeng which are crap. In the middle are Midland mobile radios that unfortunately due to poor design or clever marketing deception only deliver narrow band FM, so they sound weak.

Your best bet are surplus Kenwood and Motorola commercial radios that you can pick up for under $200 each and provide 50 watts and wideband 16K0F3E or 20K0F3E modulation. The FCC certification will have an emissions list on the grant to show the power level, modulation etc for any radio you may consider.

Kenwood and Motorola make good 5 watt handheld radios as well. These are the commercial radios, not "talk abouts".

You will basically get range that is based on each radio seeing the radio horizon which can be calculated on line, but is dependent on the actual terrain. The higher your antenna, the better. If you can install a base station at your home with an antenna raised 30 or 50 feet above ground you will talk over town.

Between two 50 watt mobiles, 5 to 8 miles should be attainable. Base to mobile 8 to 12 miles if you have height. If you are on a tall hill, it will be as far as you can see and a bit more.

Repeaters are a big benefit of GMRS. You can put up your own, or use one that exists with permission of the owner. A radius of 12 to 30 miles is not uncommon.

Your 41 mile relatives would require a repeater midway between.

There are some folks linking GMRS using the internet. It is inexpensive and you can install a small station at your home and one at the relative 41 miles away and talk mobile to mobile to them through the link..

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Old 03-08-2019, 05:54 AM
franklin franklin is offline
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I also recommend going GMRS. I do have a different opinion on Baofeng. Some of their newer units are improved over previous designs. I recently purchased a UV-5R EX and put it through the paces in our lab. (Formerly Motorola) This unit now has higher impact plastic case of the same material used in some Japanese and even Motorola products. The buttons have higher quality switches. And the spectral performance of the radio meets FCC regulations. Receiver sensitivity is also competitive with many name brand HTs. It still can be programed to operate on both amateur bands as well as GMRS so is technically not legal. But there are by this time tens of thousands of Chinese radios in the US which can be similarly programed.

While I own a number of name brand HTs Baofengs are a good way to get started. If you stick with the practice then you will develop a personal preference to select radios that fit your needs.

The UV-5R EX is $25 on Amazon. So a $50 investment gives you two radios to get started learning.

I'll also add that programing this unit from the front panel is a piece of cake. Much easier than earlier models. Also comes with a well written and understandable manual. If you buy one I recommend buying a programing cable. But it's no longer imperative to buy one.

I see a lot of improvement in newer Baofeng models recently. To the point I'll carry this one a lot more in place of my higher end HTs.
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Old 03-08-2019, 11:05 AM
biathlon biathlon is offline
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Start here. I'm a huge fan of near vertical incidence sky wave or, NVIS for a lot of reasons.
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Old 03-08-2019, 03:58 PM
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The info can be a bit dizzying sometimes, especially for those of us getting into it, at least on the ham radio part, a bit later in life. I am just going with it's better late than never.

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Old 03-08-2019, 05:49 PM
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Perhaps the following with help. There is quite a bit of duplication, but I have found that different people prefer different styles of presenting information. Not to mention I am a lazy so-and-so and do not want to try and figure out just how to say what I want to say in one single format. So here is the article:

My thoughts on communications

Communications in the PAW are going to be critical to the success and safety of a community. There are several methods that can be used that do not rely on electricity or electronic devices, though the electronic and electrical methods are the most efficient, by far. Some are more secure than others, though by using fairly simple codes, if needed, all can be made secure from casual listeners/readers/watchers.

Some of these are:
Signal flags
Signal mirror
Though some form of power or lighting source is required, for nighttime comms a signal light can be used, as can lasers, if used carefully.

Other simple short-range systems, that require a wire connection:
Sound powered phones
Simple powered telephone system

The following is based on quality radios, and excellent antennas for maximum RELIABE communication under good conditions:

Very Short range (1/4 mile hand held to hand held) - FRS - no license

Short range (1 mile hand held to hand held, longer ranges with repeaters) – GMRS – license

Longer short range (2 miles hand held to hand held) – MURS – no license

Longer short range (2 miles hand held to hand held, longer ranges with repeaters – 2 – meter Amateur – license

Longer short range (2 miles hand held to hand held) – CB – no license

Medium range (10 miles mobile to mobile) – CB – no license

Medium range (10 miles mobile to mobile) – 6-meter/10-meter Amateur – license

Longer medium range (25 miles base to base) – CB – no license

Longer medium range (25 miles base to base) 6-meter/10-meter Amateur – license

Long range (25+ miles mobile-to-mobile/base-to-mobile/base-to-base) – HF Amateur – license

Yes, everything over 25 miles, without using repeaters, is long range. Handheld to handheld, without repeaters, is limited to about 5 miles under ideal conditions.

When it comes to radio communications there are several options for short range, medium range, and a couple for long range communications. Some are relatively inexpensive, others quite expensive.

For short range radios:
FRS – UHF, no license, fixed antennas, handheld only, ¼ mile to 1 mile, no repeaters
GMRS – UHF, license required, ¼ mile to 2 miles, more with a repeater
MURS – VHF, no license, ½ mile to 3 miles, handhelds and bases, better antennas, no repeaters
Amateur UHF – 70 cm, License required for each operator, ½ mile to 5 miles, more with repeaters
Public service UHF – For official government jurisdiction use, ½ mile to 5 miles, more with repeaters
Business Band UHF/VHF – commercial radios in these frequencies require a system license and are restricted to business activities only. Fairly expensive. ¼ mile to 5 miles, more with repeaters

For medium range radios:
CB AM/SSB – HF, no license, limit to 4 watt input on AM (equivalent to 12 watts on SSB), 1 mile to 15 miles
Amateur VHF – 6 meter, 2 meter, each operator requires a license, high power options available, 1 mile to 15 miles, more with repeaters
Business Band Low VHF – Same as UHF/VHF business band except a bit more expensive and much longer range, more with repeaters

For long range radios:
Amateur HF – License required for each operator, 1 mile to worldwide, moderate expense
Business Band HF – Same ranges as Amateur HF. System license required (quite expensive), equipment is more expensive than Amateur but usually heavy duty. Very expensive.

Long range HF radio communications are dependent on the type, quality, gain, and height of the antennas on each end; the amount of power used; and most importantly, atmospheric conditions at any given time. However, with the wide spectrum of HF for Amateur Radio, there is usually a band open for where you want to talk to at the time, if both ends can calculate propagation and are using a coordinated communications schedule. Plus, Amateur Radio operators are usually pretty good about relaying messages to points where a sender cannot get to, but they can.

There are VHF and HF options in the Aircraft Band and Marine Band, but using these radios prior to the PAW will result in serious penalties, unless used for their intended purposes.

For the most inexpensive and practical use radios I would go with MURS for short range (about $100 per handheld radio up to $200); CB AM/SSB for medium range mobile-to-mobile/mobile-to-base/base-to-base; (about $100 to $200 plus $40 to $200 for antennas)(with 6 meter Amateur an option), and Amateur HF for long range manpack, mobile, and base (about $1,000 to $2,500 plus $100 to $2,500 for antennas).

Amateur radio is the best way to communicate for any distance, by far. And it is a decent information source because of it. But for information acquisition, there are some other possible needs that Amateur radio does not easily cover.

I would suggest you set up a monitoring suite while working on getting your Amateur Radio license (Go ahead and go for both Technician and General. If you can pass the Tech, with only a little more study, you can pass the General at the same time. Use the practice tests that are on-line.).

First: A dedicated NOAA weather radio with SAME alert, with a crank-up back-up version.

Second: A good AM/FM portable multi-power radio, preferably with crank up power option.

Third: A scanner capable of receiving trunked communications. Even if the locals are not using a trunked system, they may eventually, and there are probably agencies that might be in the area, or going through, that do.

Fourth: A decent quality dedicated shortwave receiver. Get a good one, that has SSB capability. If your back-up weather radio has shortwave, that is good, if not get a crank up, or at least a multi-powered back up shortwave radio, too.

Fifth: A good general coverage receiver. A just HF version would be okay, but better to go with an all-band/all-mode version. Mobile or handheld either one.

For antennas, you can string a wire around the apartment for the Shortwave and the general coverage receiver. Add a quality active antenna that can be used with either one and you can improve reception some of the time. One of the best options for the scanner is a discone antenna. They look strange, which might even help. Could even attach it to something artistic on the patio/deck and call it an art piece.

Get a couple of FRS/GMRS radios for short range comms (and I mean short range. No more than a mile, if that) with your family/friends. Get MURS radios if you want more range than FRS/GMRS, but still limited to around two miles most of the time.

Then, as you learn more about Amateur radio you will be able to make some informed decisions about the right equipment for your current and future situations.

Just my opinion.

Basic Comms

There are several legal choices available to the civilian to handle two-way communications needs.

FRS: handheld radios only, fixed antenna, 0.5-watt fixed power, no repeaters, no license required (UHF band)

GMRS: handheld, mobile, and base radios, variable power okay, repeaters okay, external antennas okay, license for the family is required (UHF band)

MURS: handheld, mobile, and base radios, up to 2 watts, no repeaters, external antennas okay, no license required (VHF Band)

CB AM: handheld, mobile, and base radios, up to 4 watts, no repeaters, external antennas okay, no license required (Upper end of HF band, near the bottom of Low VHF band)

CB AM/SSB: mobile and base radios, up to 4 watts AM/12watts SSB, no repeaters, external antennas okay, no license required (Upper end of HF band, near the bottom of Low VHF band)

Amateur Radios: handheld, mobile, base radios, power depends on band, up to 1,500 watts in some HF bands, repeaters on some bands okay, external antennas okay, license for each operator required (HF, Low VHF, VHF, UHF plus some others that do not really apply to general communications needs) (Personal only, no business)

Land Mobile Business Band: handheld, mobile, base radios, power depends on band and operating location, must always use minimum power required, repeaters on some bands okay, external antennas okay, Frequency selection fees & license fees are fairly expensive. (There are limited frequencies in HF, Low VHF, VHF, UHF bands.) (Business only, no personal)

FRS/GMRS/MURS/CB are all set up with channel numbers on specific bands.

Amateur radios, for the most part, can tune various frequencies within the bands, with some standardization of frequency use on VHF and UHF bands for repeater and various other uses. Equipment is from cheap to very expensive.

Land Mobile Business band users, for the most part, are assigned specific frequencies within specific narrow band limits, but there are no channel numbers. Equipment is from somewhat expensive to very expensive.

Handheld to Handheld ranges:

Short Range (Less than 1 mile): FRS, GMRS (in and around urban areas, UHF Land mobile business band, UHF Amateur band)

Medium Range (Up to 5 miles): GMRS, MURS, CB AM, (there are no legal handheld CB AM/SSB radios I know of), UHF Land mobile Business Band, UHF Amateur

Medium Range (Up to 10 miles) Low VHF Land Mobile business band, high power VHF Land Mobile Business band, high power VHF Amateur

Longer Range (Up to 25 miles) As Medium range, but using repeater systems. Using linked repeater systems can extend the range, mostly just Amateur, well above the 25 miles.

Long Range (Over 25 miles): There are no 25 mile or 50 mile or 100 mile hand held to hand held options of which I am aware other than using linked repeaters. The closest one can come are man-pack HF radios for Amateur or Land Mobile Business band use, which are compact (relatively speaking), medium power, fairly large batteries, and long, awkward antennas. I simply do not consider these handhelds. The operation parameters are the same as regular Amateur and Land Mobile Business band HF set-ups, with limited antennas, unless stationary and larger antennas are deployed. Use on the move is somewhat limited.

For vehicle mobile to mobile ranges:

Short range (Less than 10 miles): FRS, GMRS, MURS, CB-AM, VHF/UHF Land mobile Business Band, Amateur VHF/UHF (2 meter & 70 centimeter)

Medium range (up to 20 miles in really good circumstances: CB-SSB, GMRS with repeater use, VHF Land Mobile Business Band, Amateur VHF

Longer range (Up to 50 miles in really good circumstances): Low VHF Business band, VHF Business Band with repeater use, Amateur VHF with repeater use

Long range (Anything over about 50 miles): HF Land Mobile Business Band, HF Amateur

The ranges are extended very slightly from handheld range when talking to mobiles or base stations.

The ranges are extended somewhat from mobile range when talking to base stations.

All options can get longer ranges, except FRS, MURS, CB, and some Business band sections, with additional power amplification over the basic radios, very good omnidirectional antennas (all around coverage), and directional antennas.

Terrain plays a huge part in effective distances. Mountainous terrain (unless you are talking mountain top to mountain top) reduces the range of just about all frequency bands, with the lower HF frequencies the least. Heavily wooded and urban terrain reduce range. Heavy usage on a given band reduces range.

The cheapest options simply do not have much range. The medium priced options can have a bit more range, if high quality equipment is used. The higher priced options will get you just about anywhere you want, though not necessarily on any given day at any given time, though by learning propagation effects, and the ability to use different frequencies as needed, one can often carry on scheduled comms if the right band and time is matched to the propagation at the time. Propagation is rather complex, and one needs to be fairly radio literate to start trying to make reliable communications based on it.

It basically boils down to having limited range communications, up to about 5 miles handheld to handheld, and 25 miles mobile to mobile reliably, for a decent price, and going Amateur for distances over that. Getting Land Mobile Business band systems are complicated and expensive, though they can do essentially the same thing the Amateurs can do. One is personal comms, and the other business comms.

Basically it boils down to information acquisition first, communications with your family/group second, and then longer range two-way communications.

It will be imperative to know what is going on around you if something happens. The NOAA weather alert radio is the primary way the federal, state, and local governments will issue information in a crisis. Not to mention it will keep you informed about weather problems.

A scanner lets you keep up on local public service agencies (police, fire, ambulance, medical, maintenance department) as well as some VHF/UHF business band, NGOs, amateur radio, and other services. While these will not be 'official' information, they can help a person decide what is really going on, and any likely trouble spots and/or help that might be available.

A shortwave provides the same, on a worldwide scale, as the scanner does locally. What is happening around the world can affect us here, and the information is often not controlled by our government or the MSM, giving more and more accurate information than might be available. It can also be used to listen to HF Amateur, marine, aircraft, and business band frequencies, which are simply additional sources of information.

The FRS/GMRS/MURS/CB/Amateur radios allow one to actually communicate, as well as just monitor those bands for useful information. Transmitting will need to be at the lowest level that will get the job done, and minimally, as well. Radio signals can be triangulated fairly quickly and a location determined close enough for someone to find the antenna location.

This is my opinion of the very basics of civilian radio communications options.

Jerry D Young

Some of my responses to questions or statements made on various forums by various people, and my responses to them:

Originally Posted by ######
When it goes down, radio will be the last line of comm. Do not get the digital am/fm survival radios for basic info - make sure it is analogue so you can tune in between frq. You can legally own a HAM radio and listen in without an FCC license. But for the sake of it, take the time and effort to get AT LEAST your tech license and participate in your local area.

I looked and didn't see a radio discussion group for this diatribe.

Cell phones and digital land lines will fail. But even a simple CB radio [11m]- and I can't believe I'm saying this, might just be a life saver.

Take some time and look into it - how to tune your antenna, set everything up and test it. Understand your bands and the frq within them. At the very least, find out your local 2 meter and 70cm repeaters' offsets and tones.

A really great starter is a simple BaoFeng UV5R for about $30 on amazon.

You can hit local repeaters and with an antenna upgrade for a few more bucks will get you a better connection.

Radio WILL BE the only form of communication when it goes down.

Learn how to use them even if you aren't licensed.

My response:
The subject has been covered several times on the board, over the years.

While there is some truth in the statements, I pretty much disagree across the board, other than that Amateur Radio will be the best available form of communications in a grid down situation for the initial days. It is certainly not the only form that will work in a grid down situation, and not necessarily the best at times.

The Baofeng radios are fine for light duty use. But grid down, after a short time period, the repeater systems will go down and you are then limited to a couple miles to ten miles, (line of sight) of range with 2-meter and 70-cm. You need HF rigs for long distance comms. And they require larger antennas. And they all need power. Solar power systems will work long term, if sophisticated enough and sized properly. If the batteries for the solar power system are not sufficient, then you will be out of power before you are finished communicating.

Not to mention, using radios when there are outfits with the equipment to RDF your position can be a disaster. The government could easily just announce that non-approved radio comms are prohibited, and then even keying up a mike or using the Morse key could get you rounded up and incarcerated. Situations like that call for other types of communications. Hard wired sound powered phones, visible and invisible focused light systems, various audible sound systems, and various manual handheld signal systems can be used that are hard to almost impossible to detect, and even if the method is detected, often the message is indecipherable.

Blanket statements aside, yes Amateur radio should be part of most prepper's gear set and planning, but it is far from the only one, and cannot be counted on at times at all. So several forms of alternative comms, both short range and long range, should be incorporated into any comms plan.

Just my opinion.

Originally Posted by ######
What I am looking for is a good radio set up to be able to do a few tasks. If anyone has any knowledge about radio systems and can give me a little advice with it that would be awesome.

Here's the skinny. It's going to be across three platforms building, vehicle and walking. I'm looking for them to be able to cross communicate with each other. The building set up I would like to have a 100 mile omni directional range. For the vehicles I would like to have a 50 mile omni directional range and for the walking I'd like to have about a 25-30 mile range. I'd like to have a wide range of frequencies so I can bounce between them if necessary. Price range is around $100 for the walking $250 for the vehicles and about $500 for the building if this is unrealistic I am okay with flexing the prices a bit.

Thank you for the time.

My response:
I hate to be a downer, but what you are asking is not doable at the budget stated, unless you depend on repeaters. And anything over 10 miles handheld will need to be manpack form, which is much heavier and more expensive, of course.

Anything even close to doing what you want will need to be either Business band, which is very expensive and complicated, or Amateur radio with everyone getting a General Class license. And the budget would need to be at least quadrupled overall even for the Amateur radio choices.

You will need to go with HF frequencies for base and mobile with very good antennas, and 6-meter handheld to get close to the ranges you want. Some examples. If you can get good used items, it should be quite a bit cheaper, but still not cheap.

Just my opinion.

Amateur Radio Band Plan charts are below.

Since the Band charts did not copy over, I have attached the article, with the band charts included, as a .pdf
Attached Files
File Type: pdf My thoughts on basic communications.pdf (1.18 MB, 23 views)
Jerry D Young
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Old 03-09-2019, 02:28 PM
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While GMRS and FRS share spectrum, GMRS provides for greater communications range and requires an FCC license; FRS does not.

The amended rules eliminate combination FRS/GMRS radios for the most part, but allow up to 2W PEP output for FRS transceivers.

The FCC no longer certifies FRS devices that incorporate GMRS capabilities or capabilities of other services.

Existing GMRS/FRS combination radios that operate at power levels of less than 2 W ERP are now reclassified as FRS devices; existing GMRS/FRS radios that operate above that power level will be reclassified as GMRS devices, requiring an individual license.

Radios that can transmit on GMRS repeater input channels continue to be licensed individually and not by rule.

The rule changes phase out the use of voice-scrambling or “obscuring” features in all Part 95 devices, and prohibit further manufacture, importation, or sale of any devices incorporating such features, “regardless of whether the Commission has previously certified that radio.”

Requirements for FCC Form 605 for current licensing fee information.

“What are the benefits to obtaining a GMRS license? “ The benefits are many:

• You may use up to fifty-watts transmitter output power FCC R&R 95.135 on base stations and mobile units with home rooftop or vehicle rooftop antennas.

• You may use up to five watts effective radiated power on FRS 1-7

• You may have a Small Base Station FCC R&R 95.139on FRS 1-7. (Five watts ERP or less and antenna height not to exceed twenty feet.)

• You may use radios with removable antennas.

• You may use radio repeater stations to increase your range.

Advertising claims of range up to 30 miles apply only to licensed users of GMRS systems accessing repeater systems. When using an FRS radio now limited to 2 watts of transmitter output, using fixed helical antenna which comes on the “bubble pack” radios from Amazon, Walmart or others, on direct unit-to-unit “simplex” (no repeater) you epend upon reliable communication only within one-half to 2 miles in average terrain.
Longer range requires an unobstructed line of sight path between units, without blocking buildings, foliage or terrain.

Today's FRS 2-watt portables work best when one station is up high in the clear on a mountaintop talking to somebody down in the valley below. But if you are inside a metal vehicle talking to somebody else in a convoy, don’t depend upon hearing each other if you cannot actually SEE the other car on the horizon.

MURS Advantages for HOAs, etc.

If you aren't interested in studying and taking the exam for an Amateur Radio “ham” license, the next best thing for local communication within a few miles, is the Multi-Use-Radio Service or MURS. The Business Pool VHF frequencies formerly known as the VHF “color dot” frequencies were moved from Part 90 to Part 95 of the FCC Regulations to become a new Citizens Band Radio Service for private, two-way, short-distance voice or data communications service for personal or business activities of the general public.

MURS is ideal for neighborhood, farm, small business and family communications. No license is needed. Anyone is authorized by rule to operate a MURS transmitter if they are not a foreign government or a representative of a foreign government; they use the transmitter in accordance with the rules. No illegal activity, no profanity, be an adult and play nice. An MURS station is not required to transmit a station identification announcement or callsign. The channels authorized are available on a shared basis only and may not assigned for exclusive use of any entity.

Users must cooperate in the selection and use of channels in order to reduce interference and avoid interference to other MURS transmissions.

Around cities you will hear fast food drive-in windows, warehouse operations, landscapers and trash collection, building maintenance and construction site crews. The wide-band FM channels 154.57 and 154.60 get more use than the 151 Mhz. narrow-band ones.

MURS operation is authorized anywhere a CB station is authorized.

However, MURS operation is NOT authorized aboard aircraft in flight.

MURS stations are allowed to transmit either voice or data signals, including digital selective calling or tone-operated squelch tones to establish or continue voice communications, remote control and telemetering functions, except that MURS transmitters may not be operated in the continuous carrier transmit (CW or morse code) mode.

MURS users shall take reasonable precautions to avoid causing harmful interference. This includes monitoring the transmitting frequency for communications in progress and such other measures as may be necessary to minimize the potential for causing interference. This all comes under the general heading of that the FCC calls "good operating practice." It is common sense and courtesy.

MURS stations are prohibited from operating as a repeater station or as a signal booster. This prohibition includes store-and-forward packet operation. MURS stations are prohibited from interconnection with the public switched telephone network.

The biggest advantage of MURS over FRS is that you can use a more efficient, elevated antenna with "gain" to increase your useful "radio horizon" and range. At VHF antenna height is more important than transmitter power. The higher the antenna the better the reception.

For two hand-held units on flat terrain, standing in the open, without foliage, buildings or terrain obstructions, with both transceivers held at face level, theoretical line of sight is about 5 miles, which is the best you can hope for on simplex without improved antennas.

If the transmitting station remains standing with the transceiver held at face level, but the receiving antenna is elevated 25 feet above ground, line of sight range approximately doubles to 11 miles.

If the receiving station were standing on top of a 250 foot hill the line of sight range would be about 20 miles. The highest point of any MURS antenna is not allowed to be more than 60 feet above the ground or 20 feet above the highest point of the structure on which it is mounted.

The frequencies available in the Multi-Use Radio Service are:

Frequencies Authorized Bandwidth
151.820 MHz 11.25 KHz
151.880 MHz 11.25 KHz
151.940 MHz 11.25 KHz
154.570 MHz 20.0 KHz
154.600 MHz 20.0 KHz

Multi-Use Radio Service transmitters must be certificated in accordance with Part 95, Subpart J of the Commission’s rules. Business band land-mobile radio service radio units certificated prior to November 12, 2002 do not be re-certificated. [Our HOA uses ICOM F3S portables which satisfy this requirement]. This means that you can buy used, VHF "high-band" business radios used in the Landmobile Radio Service and have a commercial 2-way radio shop program them for you into MURS and legally use them without a license.

No MURS unit, under any condition of modulation, may exceed 2 Watts transmitter power output. This is not the handicap it may seem, because unlike FRS, there are no antenna restrictions. A 3 dB gain 5/8 wave antenna whip on your vehicle doubles effective radiated power. A mobile magnetic mount can also be used as an improvised base station antenna by placing it on a metal rain gutter, railing, or metal shed roof.
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