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BCD436HP: Another deaf radio?

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kodo

Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
17
#1
Just picked up a bcd436hp2.

Trying to learn the ins/outs of it. It doesn't really seem like it's detecting much traffic at all. I haven't even picked up any GMRS or FRS traffic. I'm next to a major interstate, so I should at the very least be picking up CB chatter. I even tried driving to the top of a nearby mountain with 15+ miles line of sight to the valley below. About the only thing I'm getting is weather radio and intermittent repeater transmissions.

Things I've checked:
-Squelch at lowest setting
-All services enabled
-All databases/scan selection enabled
-Location enabled
-Range setting increased
-Attenuator is OFF
-Firmware updated via Sentinel
-Database updated via Sentinel
-Antenna screwed on tight
-Did a settings reset

Am I overlooking anything?

About the only thing I haven't tried is an aftermarket antenna. Just seems suspiciously quiet out. Unfortunately I don't have another scanner to run alongside it. Maybe the apocalypse happened while I was asleep?
 

troymail

Silent Key
Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
9,977
Location
Supply (Lockwood Inlet area), NC
#2
Where are you located?

Is this a brand new radio (sealed box)?

Have you installed that latest firmware and/or library?

I can only assume you've done a location (zip code) programming.

What do you mean by "repeater transmissions"?
 

kodo

Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
17
#3
Where are you located?

Is this a brand new radio (sealed box)?

Have you installed that latest firmware and/or library?

I can only assume you've done a location (zip code) programming.

What do you mean by "repeater transmissions"?
Hey. Thanks for the reply÷

Im in Northern Nevada.

Radio is brand new.

Firmware and database were updated.

I did a zipcode program, as well as creating custom favorites lists that scan CB/MURS/GMRS/FRS. I also tried monitoring my local airport UNICOM.

By repeater transmissions, I mean Im only hearing transmissions from repeater stations. No tac frequencies.
 
Joined
Jul 18, 2014
Messages
8,884
Location
PA
#4
The factory rubber duck is OK for nearby signals, but it's not going to pick up distant signals very well. Which in northern Nevada, is pretty much all you're going to get. I'm assuming the interstate you mentioned is Highway 80; if you're in the flat areas, you can get good line of sight propagation, but typical distances are going to rule out hearing CB, MURS, FRS or GMRS, unless the transmitting station is a CB base or GMRS repeater with a good antenna on a tall mast. Mountains will block any UHF or VHF signals. If you're running the factory rubber duck inside your vehicle, keep in mind that's a bad case for RF reception, even if you are on a mountaintop. And it isn't going to pick up CB worth crap.

Northern Nevada isn't going to be a hotbed of radio activity. If you want to get much, you're going to need a decent base antenna on a tall mast at home, or a good multiband scanner antenna mounted on your vehicle.
 

kodo

Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
17
#5
The factory rubber duck is OK for nearby signals, but it's not going to pick up distant signals very well. Which in northern Nevada, is pretty much all you're going to get. I'm assuming the interstate you mentioned is Highway 80; if you're in the flat areas, you can get good line of sight propagation, but typical distances are going to rule out hearing CB, MURS, FRS or GMRS, unless the transmitting station is a CB base or GMRS repeater with a good antenna on a tall mast. Mountains will block any UHF or VHF signals. If you're running the factory rubber duck inside your vehicle, keep in mind that's a bad case for RF reception, even if you are on a mountaintop. And it isn't going to pick up CB worth crap.

Northern Nevada isn't going to be a hotbed of radio activity. If you want to get much, you're going to need a decent base antenna on a tall mast at home, or a good multiband scanner antenna mounted on your vehicle.

As far as a portable antenna, what would you recommend? Perhaps a telescoping unit?
 

firerick100

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Sep 3, 2004
Messages
790
Location
wolcott ct
#7
Hi KODO
I am in ct and JONWIENKE is right about everything he said, i have the same scanner and CT does not have mountains like Nevada but i do have trouble getting signals from areas that are blocked by a few mountains in the area and i run my 396xt along with it and it also does not pick up signals.

You did not state what city or town you live in but my question and suggestion would be Is there a decent size major city near you that you know there will be at least quite a bit police activity that maybe you can put in the zip of that city or area and take a ride and hang out for a few hours and see if the scanner picks up communications then your scanner is working good and if it does not pick up anything at all then something may be not working right and alao make sure they are not on some radio system that scanners will not pick up. Other than that i would say get a better antenna as recommended by the other posters here.
 

kodo

Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
17
#8
Hey guys!

Yeah, I played around with it some more. I drove around town and listened to the business band frequencies. It's working a little better. The close call feature is really cool. My previous R-shack scanner didn't have it.

For my vehicle usage I ordered the Tram 1199. I will see about getting a Telescoping diamond antenna next. I think this 436 might be a keeper!
 
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