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GMRS / FRS Discussions related to GMRS (General Mobile Radio Service) and FRS (Family Radio Service) communications

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  #41 (permalink)  
Old 04-24-2014, 2:11 PM
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In my neck of the woods all the local PD's still analog or are simulcasting analog are in the 420 MHz band.

For that technicality alone the 420 to 430MHz band is out. Never will be touched.

I will say that the few PD's left who are simulcasting have variances from the FCC to stay WBFM and it's a treat to listen to the audio in comparison to the trunked traffic we're all growing more and more accustomed to.

On that note, I'm pulling the rip cord on this thread...
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  #42 (permalink)  
Old 04-26-2014, 12:03 AM
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Originally Posted by jdobbs2001
The whole 420-450 (30Mhz spectrum) sits pretty idle with little use by Amateur radio operations. So why not carve out 2Mhz out of that band for narrow band 12.5khz (2.5khz deviation) FM equipment.
I reckon they would rather give it to paid services....... They are running out of room for stuff... (They really need to start exploring freqs ABOVE 500,000 MEGS!! (Put stuff up there and higher))
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Old 04-28-2014, 9:59 AM
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(They really need to start exploring freqs ABOVE 500,000 MEGS!! (Put stuff up there and higher))
500 GHz? Um, what?

How do you propose to communicate via Terahertz Radiation?
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Old 04-28-2014, 10:43 AM
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500 GHz? Um, what?

How do you propose to communicate via Terahertz Radiation?
I cannot stop laughing! OMG priceless reply.
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Old 04-29-2014, 4:18 AM
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Originally Posted by WB4CS
How do you propose to communicate via Terahertz Radiation?
Ah man!!
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Old 04-29-2014, 8:35 AM
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Originally Posted by KD2BRR View Post
Why not just get an amateur radio license?
This is the first sensible thing anyone has said.

Any chimp can get a "tech" ham license. Then you have all the ham VHF/UHF bands plus some 10 meter phone privileges.

Last edited by bill4long; 04-29-2014 at 8:40 AM..
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Old 04-29-2014, 8:44 AM
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Cool Old idea...

For those of us that have the ability, that is we Hams, the best that we can do is talk it up. Sure, some of us only have an FM HT, but we can use the available repeaters, or even just simplex. I understand that there are a few select groups that use AM or SSB, and those groups are small, but at least they can say that they are getting some use out of the spectrum. Ten meteres is used the same way, albeit, at times the band really opens up and the game is on. They can also say that the spectrum is in use. That may prevent some re-farming.

Usefulness only comes after use. Sure, there is a slow start on getting folks to invest in 1.25m and 70c, but its something that I think is worth while, how ever long it takes. Most folks, for investments sake, won't buy into it until they see others using it. I did that. Some of it was used until I went OTR. I found a few of the radios that I used and am planning on doing it again.

Think of the privacy. If it is thought to not be used, who is listening? Until it becomes popular in your area, think of the private, but open conversations you could have! The Novice class started out in the 1.25m band before the next upgrade. The on to technician class to 2m and General to 10m. On the same progression we should follow to the seemingly unused bands.

I just don't think we should give up on the little bands that others may forget. I tune in just in case I pass through an area where it is used on a normal basis. Never know where I might be needed.
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Old 05-06-2014, 11:29 AM
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I have been listening/watching the entire 2 meter and 70cm bands (B200 SDR) its dead band, nothing and little activity on 2m.

I guess a lot of people who jumped on Ham radio back in the 90s left for smartphones etc..

10 meters is quiet also.
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Old 05-06-2014, 11:41 AM
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You do also realize half of the ham's still work and its the middle of the day right? The most traffic you here is during rush hours and after dinner. The Ham bands by me are always used. This idea has no practicality in it. The FRS/GMRS bands have enough spectrum. If anything the rules should be changed there.

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Old 05-06-2014, 11:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdobbs2001 View Post
I have been listening/watching the entire 2 meter and 70cm bands (B200 SDR) its dead band, nothing and little activity on 2m.

I guess a lot of people who jumped on Ham radio back in the 90s left for smartphones etc..

10 meters is quiet also.
Depends on where you live. Just because 2/70 is quiet in your area isn't true for other places. In my area 2M is fairly active most of the day. 70cm is pretty quiet at times, depending on when you listen.

In some parts of the country, 2/70 are so active and crowded that many hams have migrated to 222/900 MHz in order to have spectrum to put up repeaters.

As for 10 meters, I guess it depends on your antenna. 10M SSB has been wide open to DX for a few months now.
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Old 05-06-2014, 12:18 PM
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The thing is, there is not a decent CB band that has good range and practical radios. 27 MHZ CB is crummy for hand-helds, because of antenna size. And the skip gets in the way too. GMRS exists, but it's not a free band. FRS is extremely short range. I would be in favor of 10 channels of simplex in the 220 mhz spectrum that the FCC took away (because of UPS, which ended up not using it), with 25 watts of power, decent antenna height, decent radios, etc., where people could have up to 20 miles of simplex communications. I think that would be a good thing.

Why not just get a ham license, you ask? Well, some people don't want to be hams. Why should everyone have to become a ham or obtain a GMRS license to get a decent band with decent radios? 10 channels isn't going to kill anyone. (I AM a ham, by the way. And loving every minute of it for 33 years.)

Or they could just drop the $85 GMRS license fee. That might work. Especially in areas with sparser population. But I'd rather not upset the status quo. Some people have time and money invested in GMRS repeaters, etc. No reason to sully that up.
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Old 05-06-2014, 1:12 PM
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Just to play devil's advocate here and be that "elitist ham operator"... do we really want another CB band so close to an amateur radio band? CB'ers can't even stay in their legal 40 channels and run up and down 10/12 meters. If we added a CB band in the 400 MHz range (or 222) how long before we would see freebanders going up and down 70cm amateur frequencies (or 1.25M)? It's not that hard to get a UHF radio that transmits from 400 - 500 MHz - either modified or out of the box. Baofangs would be the new freeband CB radio!
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Old 05-06-2014, 1:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bill4long View Post
The thing is, there is not a decent CB band that has good range and practical radios. 27 MHZ CB is crummy for hand-helds, because of antenna size. And the skip gets in the way too. GMRS exists, but it's not a free band. FRS is extremely short range. I would be in favor of 10 channels of simplex in the 220 mhz spectrum that the FCC took away (because of UPS, which ended up not using it), with 25 watts of power, decent antenna height, decent radios, etc., where people could have up to 20 miles of simplex communications. I think that would be a good thing.

Why not just get a ham license, you ask? Well, some people don't want to be hams. Why should everyone have to become a ham or obtain a GMRS license to get a decent band with decent radios? 10 channels isn't going to kill anyone. (I AM a ham, by the way. And loving every minute of it for 33 years.)

Or they could just drop the $85 GMRS license fee. That might work. Especially in areas with sparser population. But I'd rather not upset the status quo. Some people have time and money invested in GMRS repeaters, etc. No reason to sully that up.
So pretty much what I got out of that is that you want the FCC to give the more public more radio channels for free? See that's why this doesn't hold any practicality. The FCC has become a business, they aren't civil servants willing to give you a chunk of a band for free. The cheapest and easiest way to go nowadays is to get you're ham license because it is only 15 dollars for 10 years and the test you take is basic physics and common sense you learn in high school.

If you care enough to go to the FCC about changing the rules you obviously know more than the average joe who goes out and buys the bubble pack radios or the CB's at Radio Shack or Walmart. You are preaching to a crowd that knows what they are talking about, the people these services were intended for are people who want to go to a store, buy a radio, bring it back home and use it. They know nothing about radio and to give those people even more freedom would ruin radio.

There is no need to expand CB or FRS/GMRS. There is no logical argument to even make it past this forum.
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Old 05-06-2014, 2:00 PM
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Originally Posted by jdobbs2001 View Post
I have been listening/watching the entire 2 meter and 70cm bands (B200 SDR) its dead band, nothing and little activity on 2m.
What time local? What antenna and feed? Where local? All of these factors will play heavily.

I live in the middle of the Mojave Desert with less than 45000 people in a 60 mile radius, and I still have activity on those bands, almost constantly on a few freqs but some activity across the bands.

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I guess a lot of people who jumped on Ham radio back in the 90s left for smartphones etc..
Except that there are more hams today in the US than at any time in the past. And someone licensed in the 90ís would have to be renewing their license to still have it today, so they must have at least some interest in ham radio still. More new hams were added to the community in 2013 than in 1998, 99, and 2000 combined (number of hams increased by 7035 from Jan to Dec 2013, it increased by 5431 between Jan 1998 and Dec 2000).

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10 meters is quiet also.
10 meters is heavily affected by propagation, when the band is open it is used, when not open then not used much. Here locally we use 29600 kHz FM a lot when the band is closed, but I donít think that is a common practice.

However, I have not seen a day in the last 30 when 10 meters was not doing something. Right this minute, as I type this and in the middle of a work day and with conditions not great, I see at least a dozen conversations in the 28300 to 28500 range, maybe that many on CW below 28300, and several repeaters active in the little 200 kHz slice that is used for FM.

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Old 05-07-2014, 6:03 AM
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Or they could just drop the $85 GMRS license fee.
$90.00 effective June 6, 2014.
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Old 05-07-2014, 2:09 PM
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$90.00 effective June 6, 2014.
Really!? That is GENIOUS people already are not paying 85 why would they pay 90. Might as we'll drop the whole damn fee
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Old 05-07-2014, 2:24 PM
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Really!? That is GENIOUS people already are not paying 85 why would they pay 90. Might as we'll drop the whole damn fee
I have to agree. Instead of the OP's original idea of creating yet another UHF band what should happen is dropping the GMRS license and restructuring FRS/GMRS to be a license free 25W or 50W citizens band.

I know there are several GMRS users that are licensed and have invested a lot of money into GMRS repeaters, but just like 27 Mhz CB the GMRS channels have become mostly abandoned by FCC enforcement.

In my opinion, it's pretty clear that the FCC doesn't care much what happens on the GMRS channels. If they did, they would have never allowed the sale of bubble-pack hybrid FRS/GMRS radios that sale in big box stores. You know, the radios that have in the back of the owners manual in small print "you need a license to use the GMRS channels." The owners manual gets thrown in the garbage bin and most of the users have no idea they're operating illegally. Add this to the FCC allowing Chinese radios being sold in the US that are Part 90 approved even though they are fully user programmable out of the box and TX across every VHF/UHF frequency they receive on. (Kind of defeats the purpose of Part 90 certification doesn't it?)
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Old 05-07-2014, 2:52 PM
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Really!? ... Might as we'll drop the whole damn fee
Yes really, the change should be out of the FCC this week, I'd imagine.

The Communications Act requires a license except for radio services called Citizens Band (that's "services" and not "devices" ... devices are a different issue).

GMRS would have to be officially called a kind of Citizens Band, or reduced to a Part 15 unlicensed device instead of a radio service, in order to drop the fee.

Licensees have pushed back on that incredibly dumb idea for years, which is why it has not happened yet. But the pull to turn GMRS into an unlicensed mess with no repeaters and no accountability is just so hard to resist.
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Old 05-07-2014, 6:50 PM
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Originally Posted by jdobbs2001 View Post
I have been listening/watching the entire 2 meter and 70cm bands (B200 SDR) its dead band, nothing and little activity on 2m.

I guess a lot of people who jumped on Ham radio back in the 90s left for smartphones etc..

10 meters is quiet also.
Your assumption is both false and self-serving. 144, 440, and increasingly 220 is quite active in many areas of the nation. Find a logical set of facts to support your desires.
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Old 05-07-2014, 9:00 PM
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This thread is still happening... wow.

Here's why this will never happen, and it has nothing to do with usage or licensees, or the FCC giving a rats .....

Lawyers. Want to find out how many lawyers are licensed hams? Press the issue. The ARRL will get wind (and as much as some hams want to complain that they just take our money for a monthly magazine) they'll tap the pool of lawyers and this will never take off.
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