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Ham & Public Safety?

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BigRedBox80

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#1
I'm looking to see if there is a semi budget handheld radio out there that can operate on both 2m/70cm and 850Mhz public safety (fire/rescue), both of which I can legally operate on.

Is there such thing out there? I don't know a whole lot about the public safety/public radios and have only the most basic Ham radio.
 

Thunderknight

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#2
I'm looking to see if there is a semi budget handheld radio out there that can operate on both 2m/70cm and 850Mhz public safety (fire/rescue), both of which I can legally operate on.

Is there such thing out there? I don't know a whole lot about the public safety/public radios and have only the most basic Ham radio.
Budget, no, not that I can think of.
You are basically going to need an APX8000, Harris Unity or Thales Liberty.
Even on the used market, they are $$$k.
If budget is a limiting factor, you are looking at two radios. If the 800 MHz is conventional analog, they are very cheap on the used market. Even 800 phase 1 p25 isn't too pricy used.
 
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#3
There are no ham radios that I can find (inc. cheap Chinese) that will transmit on 2m, 3/4m and 37.5cm. The other problem is that ham radios are not certified to transmit on public service frequencies. Public service radios can however transmit on ham frequencies legally. I know it would be nice to have one radio that will do everything (I am a ham, firefighter & EMT) but all it would require for the 'world to come crumbling down' is one surprise FCC inspection or an accident with OSHA investigation. You would probably never get caught...radio-roulette...but if you did; you, your station (chief), and the county's agency could be held accountable.................It just ain't worth it.
 

BigRedBox80

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#4
There are no ham radios that I can find (inc. cheap Chinese) that will transmit on 2m, 3/4m and 37.5cm. The other problem is that ham radios are not certified to transmit on public service frequencies. Public service radios can however transmit on ham frequencies legally. I know it would be nice to have one radio that will do everything (I am a ham, firefighter & EMT) but all it would require for the 'world to come crumbling down' is one surprise FCC inspection or an accident with OSHA investigation. You would probably never get caught...radio-roulette...but if you did; you, your station (chief), and the county's agency could be held accountable.................It just ain't worth it.
When I say budget, I guess a few hundered dollars isn't out of the question but I'm sure that's still not enough.

Even if it was OK'd to be used in this fashion, what issues do you see with OSHA or FCC? Just curious.
 
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#5
When I say budget, I guess a few hundered dollars isn't out of the question but I'm sure that's still not enough.

Even if it was OK'd to be used in this fashion, what issues do you see with OSHA or FCC? Just curious.
As far as the FCC goes, to operate on the public safety frequencies, your radio will need to be certified for Part-90 use and unmodified. To operate on the ham bands, no such certification is required, so a radio that covers the required bands without modification should work just fine. As others have said, there are very few radios that will do that and those are very expensive.

Operating an uncertified radio on the ham bands is just fine, although as the operator, you are responsible for making sure that the radio doesn't exceed rather strict limits on emissions outside of the ham bands. This is generally not a problem since most Part-90 certified radios are well designed and work well, and often the ham bands they'll work on are even within the design specs for their coverage.

Operating an uncertified radio on the Public Service bands COULD have you and the agency face huge fines ($10,000 per day per violation). While this can often go without detection, it's still a possibility. Most agencies will not want the risk and will not allow such operation anyway. Even if they do, as their "agent", do you really want to be on the hook for the fine and explaining why you caused this huge problem for them?

One other thing to think about is what are the rules for the system you'll be using this radio on. Often the large multi-agency systems have strict rules on what radios are allowed on them, who can operate them, who can program them, who can supply them, etc. They also monitor their systems closely and are quick to kill any radios that are not authorized, or that appear to be clones of others on the system. Once killed, that expensive radio is basically just that, killed. It will no longer work without a trip to the manufacturer who will require the agency certifying that it was killed in error and authorizing them to repair it (not an inexpensive task either).
 
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#6
Well that all depends on how much you like your ticket, the F.C.C can revoke your ticket and OSHA is a whole nother can of worms , ever hear about the FF who died in the line ,falling through a roof but his family was denied a death benefit because he did not have his gloves on ?.

Sent from my SM-T810 using Tapatalk
 
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