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St. Augustine - County: Radios failed at BP blaze

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radiomanNJ1

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In the land of make believe
I bet the radio sales people are foaming at the mouth to get in and sell this one.
The latest whiz bang P25 700 mhz system would make it so much better right??? The fire chief said the volume was low wait till he hears 700.
 

W2NJS

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Read the PS channel assignments for Jax and St. Augustine and you'll begin to see why they had so much trouble. Both are spread over three bands and it's not hard to imagine what happens when there is no interoperability plan, which apparently there wasn't.
 

Farscan

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The radios didn't fail nearly as much as command.
Alot of chiefs and not enough indians!!
 

b7spectra

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OK, so they get a new TRS. Dozens more channels. Half a dozen channel will be in use at a fire like this one. If the Chiefs are on one, the FF's on another, M/A on another, other agencies on another, how are they going to be able to talk to each other? Jacksonville is Encrypted. Are they going to give their code to St. Johns County for mutual aid? And if St. Johns County goes 700 and everyone else is on 800, hello?
 

SCPD

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Interoperability in Jacksonville, St. Augustine and St. Johns County, FL area

Has anyone in the St. Augustine, Jacksonville and St. Johns County, FL area thought about purchasing several mobile cross band repeaters and installing these in key fire apparatus in the area to promote and allow for interoperability? If each agency is satisfied with the coverage their different systems provide on a daily basis then it would be much more economical to utilize cross band repeaters to provide interoperability during the times it is needed. A good example of a very reliable cross band repeater is the Motorola GR300 Repeater Interface Kit, known as a RIK, (Motorola Part Number HLN3333) that costs less than $300 to purchase. The RIK will interface with multiple models of radios so an agency can have a VHF radio linked to an 800 MHz trunked radio and all the fire officer on the engine has to do is select the channel on the VHF radio he wants to link to a talkgroup on the 800 MHz radio then press the patch button and the audio on both systems are linked together. We have five cross band repeaters available for use in our City one of which is installed in the City pickup truck that I'm assigned to drive. The cross band repeater in this pickup truck is equipped with a Motorola PM400 VHF mobile and a Motorola XTL1500 800 MHz mobile. This solution works extremely well because it allows the firefighters to take interoperability with them where ever they go in their vehicle regardless of whether they are within the coverage of their home radio system or not. If they get outside the coverage area of one or more of the radio systems programmed into either of the radios they can simply select a VTAC and cross patch to an 8TAC and they can talk to other firefighters using radios in the other band. Again, it is a great solution and it sure beats spending $3,000 to $7,000 per radio to replace three or four portable radios assigned to an engine, ladder truck, rescue or squad. I'm truly disappointed this type of solution hasn't really taken off throughout our nation instead of agencies being talked into purchasing multi-million dollar radio systems. I'm sure there are many other interoperabilty solutions similar to the GR300 out there, but this is one that I have personally had a lot of success with.
 
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MTS2000des

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Crossband repeating capable radios have existed in ham radio since the late 1980's when Kenwood introduced the TM-721. This was 1987 to be exact. Why did it take almost 20 years for this technology to catch on in public safety? It's not rocket science, and shouldn't cost 10 grand for simple multi-band subscriber radio.

A Yaesu FT-60R costs $159 and operates on both VHF and UHF bands with 5 watt output... an APX7000 costs close to 6 grand new, granted it's IMBE, more rugged...but the technology under the hood is not THAT different. The average cellphone can operate on 4 RF bands or more and they are a few dollars. The RF generating circuits aren't that different inside, and the cellphone usually incorporates even more advanced logic, vocoder and user interface.

One cannot argue the amount of markup on the public safety radio market is just pure inflation based on the fact that the customer is willing to pay whatever the vendor asks without question.
 

R8000

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a yaesu ft-60r costs $159 and operates on both vhf and uhf bands with 5 watt output... An apx7000 costs close to 6 grand new, granted it's imbe, more rugged...but the technology under the hood is not that different.
lol .....ok
 
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