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I was wanting to see if anyone has a bit of Walkie Talkie knowledge? I am looking for the best "long" range gear out there without a license (HAM). Midlands, Motorolas, etc. I know the distances listed on the packages are line of sight but looking for realistic distances. Hopefully you guys have some experience. Thanks in advance for any help.

MOD
 

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I don't know if you can get any that far anymore. Mine only go for about a mile with no hills or anything blocking. Might try CB radios.

I too would like to know what is the longest range without a Ham license.
 

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Sorry, I should have said that. 20+ plus miles.

Thanks,

MOD
20 miles is NOT going to happen with anything which does not require a license.

Under ideal conditions you could do it with VHF-MURS radios connected to a directional yagi antenna elevated 30 ft. or more above ground, using a TV antenna rotor and an antenna of full wavelength with four or more elements, using a low-loss feedline, to contact a similar base station equally equipped in which you know the beam heading for direct point-to-point contact.

It would also be easy using a low power 5w QRP HF-SSB radio with half-wave dipole configured for near vertical incidence skywave on the 40 meter band in daytime or 75 meters at night, but sorry, that requires the General class ham license...

But with your handie talkie and a base-loaded helical coil rubber duckie it simply ain't gonna happen.
 

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You guys are amazing and fast! Thanks for all the input. I sort of figured that is what I was going to hear. Watching YouTube videos became redundant and figured you guys here would be educated on the subject. I'll look into the stuff mentioned. Again thanks for the help!!

MOD
 

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the standard 5 watt ht will not do that for you, you will need a good vhf set up and a good antenna, i can reach a repeater 20 miles away with my 8 watt baofeng, but there is a good antenna on the repeater. you will need something in the 25-50 watt range to do 20 miles, there are some small vhf sets with 25 watts that might do it for you but they will need a battery and antenna to go with them. i bought one to try out i just recieved it today and will need to program and try it out.

alex
 

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If you have a good antenna, and the height is correct then 5 watts will work fine--assuming that there is no other interference. Going to the line of sight calculator, it shows that each antenna would have to be 120 feet high on flat terrain, to get 30 miles. (each antenna would have a radio "horizon" of 15 miles. If you or the receiving station were on a mountain, without any obstructions that would work--if he was about 240 higher than you are. Often there is some bending of the radio waves, or there can be tropospheric ducting, which will give longer ranges, with shorter antennas. I have communicated with another ship as far as 320 miles way with 25 watts on a VHF frequency, due to the ducting (or bouncing the radio wave off layers of the atmosphere.--don't count on it.)

The ground wave on 160 meters and 80 meters often can be 30 miles--but as noted you have to have a HAM license.

GMRS radios have a Max. power of 50 watts, so with a radio such as the Midland - MXT400, 40 Watt GMRS MicroMobile you will have maximum range (with a good antenna) and license, without a test. Unfortunately this is not a hand held radio, but can be very portable, with a battery pack.

In November 1983 I made contact with Owen K. Garriott, W5LFL, aboard STS-9 using a hand held 5 watt Yaseau 2 meter radio, with a specialized antenna. Garriott was just using the standard antenna on his portable Motorola 2 meter radio. The exchange was brief, just an acknowledge of call sign reception. I was on the deck of my sailboat, and he was about 155 nautical miles above the earth in space.
 

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I don't have the time to read the manual at the moment but it depends on if it can be programed for the FRS channels and power limited to 2 watts. Anything else needs a license.
I have some kind of radio license thing. Got it about 45 or 50 years ago. I just don't know what it is good for. Had to have it for Commercial Pilot license, or some kind of aircraft driver license.
 

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I have some kind of radio license thing. Got it about 45 or 50 years ago. I just don't know what it is good for. Had to have it for Commercial Pilot license, or some kind of aircraft driver license.
Well, you should look into that.

But the short story is that there are really just a couple kinds of radio broadcast you can do with no license. CB, and FRS (Family Radio Service) Those little walkie talkies that you see for sale in sporting good stores etc are FRS radio's The are 'legally' limited to 2 watts power and short antennas. You 'can' technically use a much more powerful radio and antenna on those same channels and get more out of them. How likely you are to ever get in trouble doing that....I have no idea.

This is part of the reason Baofengs are so popular. They come out of the box ready break the rules.

Like most things in the world...in order to really get the most out of something, you need a special license of some kind.
 

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How likely you are to ever get in trouble doing that....I have no idea.
In general you don't.

However in local news couple months back was a short news about how officials tracked down TV antenna amplifiers. A certain model was faulty and used in some households around the airport produced error in their systems. In this case people weren't in trouble either. Faulty amplifier was removed and they had to buy a new one though.

In this case they triangulated the locations where the amplifiers were. Likewise if you use a radio to transmit in such way that it interferes enough with someone, they might come looking for you.
 

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I have a pair of Baofengs that I upgraded to 16" antennas. On a GMRS freq I got 19 miles. This was line of sight. I live on a ridge and was hunting on another ridge. I phoned my wife to test radios and she when out on the deck and we were able to hear each other. Again line of sight.

VHF and UHF frequencies are line of sight no matter power or antenna.

I suggest you consider trying to get at least the Tech lincense. It's not that hard and at most the cost to take test is $15. The question pool can be found at hamexam.org

You will learn a lot about radio and then you can decide if you want to study and get the General license which lets you play on the HF frequencies. This is where the fun is.

McLOVIN

ARRL and Laurel VE(Volunteer Examiner)
 
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