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

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Old 10-06-2018, 3:20 PM
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Default Unlicensed GMRS Operators

There are people in my neighborhood who do not have a License for using GMRS channels and they use it like CB radio. I try to explain this to them on the air and they ignore me altogether and laugh. The FCC should never put FRS and GMRS together in the same radio.
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Old 10-06-2018, 3:25 PM
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Are they using a repeater or the simplex frequencies (CHís 15-22)?


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Old 10-06-2018, 3:55 PM
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If they are in fact on GMRS repeater outputs, those are also FRS authorized at 2W, I believe (chs 15-22 as the previous poster stated).

Are you listening to 462.550 - 462.725 CSQ? If so, you're probably going to hear alot of the type use you are describing.
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Old 10-06-2018, 5:08 PM
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Originally Posted by datainmotion View Post
If they are in fact on GMRS repeater outputs, those are also FRS authorized at 2W, I believe (chs 15-22 as the previous poster stated).

Are you listening to 462.550 - 462.725 CSQ? If so, you're probably going to hear alot of the type use you are describing.


I had completely forgotten about the FCCís regulation changes to FRS & GMRS from last year. Regardless, if theyíre on simplex I wouldnít worry about it to be honest. Whether theyíre using more RF power or something else thatís against regulation, the FCC will not get involved if their on simplex. Especially if theyíre not interfering with enough people to draw the FCCís attention. Once in a blue moon the enforcement agents will pick up a complaint involving one of the Personal Radio Services and those are usually ones involving repeater interference.


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Old 10-06-2018, 5:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Tech1 View Post
There are people in my neighborhood who do not have a License for using GMRS channels and they use it like CB radio. I try to explain this to them on the air and they ignore me altogether and laugh. The FCC should never put FRS and GMRS together in the same radio.

Are they using GMRS in a way that would be legal/illegal regardless if they had a license? It's pretty flexible even with a license. Would that solve the problem if there is one?
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Old 10-06-2018, 9:08 PM
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With tens of millions in use, it's now impossible to police.
I have heard dozens of hams and contractors illegally using these frequencies for decades.
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Old 10-06-2018, 9:47 PM
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These people do not have a license for GMRS because I gave my call sign and they kept ignoring me. I told them to move channels 1 thru 14 to continue fooling around, plus they had there child using the radio as well. They were using channel 20 which is for GMRS. People don't follow rules in regards to using a radio. Yes I hear a lot of misuse of channels 15 thru 22 in my area including people who travel through the area. What's the sense of me having a license then ?
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Old 10-06-2018, 10:20 PM
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These people do not have a license for GMRS because I gave my call sign and they kept ignoring me. I told them to move channels 1 thru 14 to continue fooling around, plus they had there child using the radio as well. They were using channel 20 which is for GMRS. People don't follow rules in regards to using a radio. Yes I hear a lot of misuse of channels 15 thru 22 in my area including people who travel through the area. What's the sense of me having a license then ?


In reality a GMRS license are for those that use repeaters. Yes, youíre technically required to have a license to use simplex. However, your everyday person doesnít understand this let alone radio communications in general. Trying to explain to these people that they need a license is like trying to talk to a person who doesnít understand English. So youíre waisting your breath. Those of us that are into this hobby and understand radio communications are expected to follow the rules by having a license. Thatís the point. I know itís messed up and seams unfair but thatís just the way it is.


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Old 10-06-2018, 10:31 PM
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In reality a GMRS license are for those that use repeaters. Yes, youíre technically required to have a license to use simplex. However, your everyday person doesnít understand this let alone radio communications in general. Trying to explain to these people that they need a license is like trying to talk to a person who doesnít understand English. So youíre waisting your breath. Those of us that are into this hobby and understand radio communications are expected to follow the rules by having a license. Thatís the point. I know itís messed up and seams unfair but thatís just the way it is.


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That was kind of the point I was trying to make. Having a license doesn't mean the user is going to do the right thing, but if might give you a little leverage when attempting to get the FCC involved. I hear plenty of licensed hams that break the rules constantly.


Look how many people drive vehicles without a license!
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Old 10-06-2018, 10:36 PM
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That was kind of the point I was trying to make. Having a license doesn't mean the user is going to do the right thing, but if might give you a little leverage when attempting to get the FCC involved. I hear plenty of licensed hams that break the rules constantly.


Look how many people drive vehicles without a license!


Exactly, I learned along time ago to just let people that donít understand this field do whatever they want. Itís too much of a headache to deal with. I think a lot of us forget sometimes that our type are a very small population of people on this Earth.


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Old 10-06-2018, 11:09 PM
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Would it help of the FCC required manufacturers and/or dealers to include information about licensing, restrictions, etc.? It might not solve the problem but it might help a little. The general public is completely unaware of FCC regs. Maybe in a hundred years, the word would get around.
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Old 10-06-2018, 11:14 PM
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Would it help of the FCC required manufacturers and/or dealers to include information about licensing, restrictions, etc.? It might not solve the problem but it might help a little. The general public is completely unaware of FCC regs. Maybe in a hundred years, the word would get around.


I believe the manufacturers do include a warning about using CHís 15-22.


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Old 10-06-2018, 11:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Tech1 View Post
These people do not have a license for GMRS because I gave my call sign and they kept ignoring me. I told them to move channels 1 thru 14 to continue fooling around, plus they had there child using the radio as well. They were using channel 20 which is for GMRS. People don't follow rules in regards to using a radio. Yes I hear a lot of misuse of channels 15 thru 22 in my area including people who travel through the area. What's the sense of me having a license then ?

Tech 1:

Unfortunately, we're living in an era in which there is a great deal of flagrant disregard of laws, rules and regulations. I'm not one to believe in being legalistic about everything because life isn't that precise but civility in at least listening to someone inform you that you're in violation of something like FCC Regulations is representative of how those same people ignore other, more important rules/laws. There was a line in one of The Carpenters hits back in the 70's: "I know I ask perfection from a quite imperfect world - and fool enough to think that's what I'll find." That line often applies to ME. Hang in there, Tech 1 !!!

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Old 10-07-2018, 7:34 PM
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These people do not have a license for GMRS because I gave my call sign and they kept ignoring me. I told them to move channels 1 thru 14 to continue fooling around, plus they had there child using the radio as well. They were using channel 20 which is for GMRS. People don't follow rules in regards to using a radio. Yes I hear a lot of misuse of channels 15 thru 22 in my area including people who travel through the area. What's the sense of me having a license then ?
I think you need to go read the Part 95 rules again, especially the FRS specific section that was rewritten in September of 2017.

If they are using the consumer 2 watt or less/non removable antenna, then they are covered by the new FRS rules.

As for them ignoring you, can't say I'd blame them. Especially if they had a child present. "Do not engage" is always a good approach.
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Old 10-07-2018, 8:18 PM
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The "unlicensed" family might have had CTSS tones enabled and never heard the OP trying to tell them to move to another channel.

"Do not engage" is also a good approach for GMRS licensees too.

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Old 10-08-2018, 3:45 AM
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As people have noted the laws changed regarding use of the GMRS channels. The only thing I can suggest is to put your own PL on and use legal limit (50 watt for GMRS) radios. Eventually they will move (I would move, but all the GMRS channels around here are used or interfered with by Pirate Hams running illegal FRS repeaters at huge ERP levels which bleeds into the adjacent GMRS channel and if you use that adjacent channel they get mad and start jamming you every chance they get.

We do have a non GMRS licensed family using the same channel but since they are far enough away from either of us and they use them on their property we can totally coexist. Ironically. they chose the same pl as ours, but since I had wanted to change to DCS anyways to minimize the squelch tail, it wasn't a big deal.

My girlfriend and I have taken this approach and it works well. The only problem we have is rogue licensed Hams who aren't licensed GMRS intentionally jamming us with their high power ham rigs.

You are right to ask the question 'why even have the license?'. Still waiting on the answer to that very question from the FCC, as that is in my last complaint.

Last edited by swen_out_west; 10-08-2018 at 4:07 AM..
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Old 10-08-2018, 12:07 PM
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I would move, but all the GMRS channels around here are used or interfered with by Pirate Hams running illegal FRS repeaters at huge ERP levels which bleeds into the adjacent GMRS channel and if you use that adjacent channel they get mad and start jamming you every chance they get.
I sympathize with your frustration.

I do not understand your characterization of the unlawful operator as a "pirate ham." They are not in the amateur band, and unless they are using their amateur callsign I do not understand why their separate involvement in the amateur radio service has anything to do with the matter.

I had always understood that things like high-power repeaters that are unlawful on so many counts (excessive power, band does not permit repeaters, interference with licensed services, perpetrator is qualified enough to know better) attracted enforcement interest from the FCC. Perhaps times have changed. If you were to contact the FCC with the location, frequency, power level, and typical operating schedule, I would imagine that the situation would be resolved in your favor.
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Old 10-08-2018, 6:26 PM
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I sympathize with your frustration.

I do not understand your characterization of the unlawful operator as a "pirate ham." They are not in the amateur band, and unless they are using their amateur callsign I do not understand why their separate involvement in the amateur radio service has anything to do with the matter.

I had always understood that things like high-power repeaters that are unlawful on so many counts (excessive power, band does not permit repeaters, interference with licensed services, perpetrator is qualified enough to know better) attracted enforcement interest from the FCC. Perhaps times have changed. If you were to contact the FCC with the location, frequency, power level, and typical operating schedule, I would imagine that the situation would be resolved in your favor.
Of the 5 illegal simplex repeaters in the area they are all run by licensed Hams who use the fact that they are licensed Hams to harass and intimidate others on the PRS bands. They use their ham license as an excuse to bully non-hams and think that GMRS/FRS is their private spot where they can do what they want. Other Hams in the area in my opinion are complicit in ignoring the abuses because it gets them off their precious frequencies.

When I got into radio 3 years ago I really tried to adhere to all the rules, even the 4 watt CB requirement. All I kept hearing from internet Hams is 'that's against FCC regs' etc, etc. It is very disheartening to find out that around here 50 percent of CB violations are by licensed Hams and .other than the GMRS license (which doesn't even matter anymore with the new rule change) which very few people adhere to, that most of the GMRS/FRS violations are committed by licensed Hams who think their Amateur Radio license makes them special.

As for the FCC, I file a complaint every 6 months starting 1 1/2 years ago. I have fully realized that the FCC does not care about GMRS, but I still file just so that I myself don't become complicit,.

Last edited by swen_out_west; 10-08-2018 at 6:38 PM..
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Old 10-08-2018, 6:45 PM
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The point of the above is that, a lot of licensed Hams are very critical of FCC rule breaking by 'Radio Bubbas' in all bands. But the truth of the matter is that almost all of the significant violations on GMRS/FRS are done by licensed Hams

I say significant because a 2 watt handheld with a fixed antenna bought at WalMart doesn't cause any interference to speak of. If you don't want to hear the roger beeps and the kids it's a simple case of putting on a PL code and it's solved. Most don't have the knowledge or equipment to cause severe issues.

Now put a 75 watt Ham rig in the hands of a Rogue licensed Ham who is not GMRS license, does not have any regard for FCC rules on GMRS/FRS, and loves to harass non licensed Hams simply because they think they are better than non licensed Hams and you have a whole different scenario.

In fact, one of the rogue hams goes out of his way to harass licensed GMRS users using more than bubble pack radios to drive them off GMRS. (By his own admission)

Last edited by swen_out_west; 10-08-2018 at 7:04 PM..
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Old 10-08-2018, 7:13 PM
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I have two GMRS repeaters that can be linked at will. I use split tones on them to keep the bubble-packers off. I never hear them due to using CTCSS/DCS and I'm sure they wonder how we can talk as far as we do. I'm a ham, but also hold a GMRS license. There is no use in trying to school a non-licensed user as they just don't care. It's just like the internet. They have (or think they do) anonymity, so the responses that you'll receive over the air will be rude or they'll just ignore you. Turn on CTCSS or DCS and just don't worry about them. No use in causing stress to yourself.
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