BC346XT and NASCAR

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cybane

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Hi Folks,
For Christmas my wife purchased 2 scanners, 1-Uniden SC230 and 1-Uniden BC346XT for us to use when we travel to Las Vegas for the race(s). The SC230 is for her and she thought I would enjoy the BC for other things than just racing with all the options it has. We have never owned scanners before, that said I purchased the USB cable and programmed her scanner (SC230) without much trouble, it has a "Car" button, she enters the number and it will scan the frequency's I loaded for that driver...pretty straight forward.
We live in the Salt Lake City area in Utah, I would like to accompish two things, one, scan local EMS, RR, etc. throughout the year and two, use it for races, specifically nascar, and for now until I am more familiar with the scanner the first purpose is racing. I have read the "easier to read" manuals (thank you BTW) and am not sure how to tackle programming for the race on the BC. All drivers have multiple frequency's, I would like to make listining as easy as possible while at the race, even if programming takes me longer to set it up. How can I set up the scanner to enter drivers numbers and have it scan multiple frequency's? Is that even possible? I would like to do this for both Nationwide and Sprint Cup as one car number may be used in both series with different drivers and frequency's. I am very open to suggestions and/or recommendations on what to do and how to do it. Two programs, multiple groups under it with drivers for each series, one program for each driver with a quick key as the car number?
Thank you in advance.
 

jdlsc

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I used the BC346XT for ALMS races and provided the following info on a previous post. I hope this helps, or at least gives you some ideas on how to program your unit for races.
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6 months ago I was sitting exactly where you are with respect to buying a scanner for races (ALMS, in my case). A secondary consideration was scanning public safety while not at races. I ended up getting the BC346XT and don't regret it one bit. I've been programming it with the FreeSCAN software with no problems.

I highly recommend you play with the programming well in advance of the race so you can settle on a configuration that will be easy for you to control while at the races. The last thing you will want to do is reprogram your scanner while at the race without a PC.

What I did was gathered several frequency lists from the web. Fortunately, with ALMS racing, they are all pretty much available. I kept a spreadsheet with all of the "latest" frequencies for each team as well as ones that "might" be used or were used previously. Once this was gathered, I created a conventional system for each car with the car # as the Quick Key. This made enabling and disabling any car as simple as punching in their #. I had to get creative with some. For example, car 7 was on Quick Key 7. Car 07, was on Quick Key 97. I programmed the alpha tagging to show the car # and team name. This way you could easily check to see if you enabled the correct car or not. I also programmed in all possible frequencies for each car into their corresponding system (typically only 3-4 per car). The scanner will scan through the channels fast enough that you won't have to worry about delays. Besides, you won't be scanning every car at once so at the most my scanner was only monitoring 10-15 frequencies. FreeSCAN will also identify duplicate frequencies, so you can make a decision on whether to include it in a particular system or not. For example, if car X used frequency A at the last race, but car Y used that same frequency a couple years ago, I'd not worry about programming that frequency for car Y.

Race Ops, SpeedTV, Local cops... each had their own conventional system, but no Quick Key. I enabled/disabled them on the scanner simply by locking/unlocking them as needed.

With all that being said, while at the race, I spent most of the time listening to the SpeedTV frequencies. The director is very cool to listen to while watching the video on the Jumbotron. Their "off-air" commentary and stories about drinking the night before were very entertaining and will provide plenty of laughs.

Lastly, FreeSCAN allows you to print out your programming. Since I was camping at the Petit LeMans, I had plenty of time to buy a frequency table, compare it to my printed program sheet and add/delete on my scanner as needed.

Don't let all of this discourage you. This may look like a lot of effort, but once you get it done once, you can use that configuration file as a template for future programming.

The BC346XT is a great scanner and can be learned without too much effort, just allow time to figuring it out in advance. DO NOT plan to pick one up on the way to the track and figure out how to program it in the parking lot. You'll pull your hair out doing this.

Enjoy!
 

KK6PD

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jdlsc, What a great write up. I have been scanning since '68, yeah that 1968, and you have nailed it spot on!!
cybane, -if you follow the tips jdlsc suggests, your off to a good start!
The only advce I would offer, is to develop you own tricks for scanning NASCAR, one of my favorite sports, next to Air Racing, it has several good Frequency Websites supporting it. For a small fee you can download all sorts of Freqs and have a great time. Freescan works rather nicely, and it's FREE! Hopefully you have a computer on hand to program you scanners. I bought a used laptop on ebay, just for programing radios. It ran about 100 bucks. It does not have to be fancy, just have a working serial port and a working USB port and you will be good to go!
Radio Reference has a good database, and it works with Freescan, which makes it easy to load many frequencies in short order!

Enjoy yourself, there's much to read here!
 
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rwier

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jdlsc, What a great write up. I have been scanning since '68, yeah that 1968, and you have nailed it spot on!!
cybane, -if you follow the tips jdlsc suggests, your off to a good start!
The only advce I would offer, is to develop you own tricks for scanning NASCAR, one of my favorite sports, next to Air Racing, it has several good Frequency Websites supporting it. For a small fee you can download all sorts of Freqs and have a great time. Freescan works rather nicely, and it's FREE! Hopefully you have a computer on hand to program you scanners. I bought a used laptop on ebay, just for programing radios. It ran about 100 bucks. It does not have to be fancy, just have a working serial port and a working USB port and you will be good to go!
Radio Reference has a good database, and it works with Freescan, which makes it easy to load many frequencies in short order!

Enjoy yourself, there's much to read here!
I subscribed/used this site for several years.

Race Scanners Racing Scanners Race Scanner Racing Headsets Racing Frequencies NASCAR Frequencies Racing Radios Radio Headset Electronics

If you stay at the track (motor home, etc.) and can access the net with your laptop, you can update your race frequencies right up until race time. With the right cables, adapters, software, etc. (lol), you can do this without ever typing a single frequency.

Scanning multiple drivers is very hectic (confusing). I ended up starting out listening to the top ten, down to top five at half race, and during the last ten laps or so, just the top three. By half race, you only need to look at the radio to lock out and open up drivers as the leader board changes, as you will recognize the drivers' voices.

Wear a sound resistant headset to listen, as a scanner by your side is not heard, lol.
 

cybane

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Jan 14, 2011
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So what I had done last week or so with the scanner was I created a new system for each car, created a group for each system will all the frequencies and assigned each system a quick key which is the car number.
I have done this for both series of racing, nationwide and sprint cup. All I will need to do is upload the programming to the scanner for the race I will be in and will do what jdlsc described,when I want to change the car I am listening to I will just switch to the desired car number, press the .no key then the quick key I assigned and it will scan all the frequencies I loaded into the group for that system.
KK6PD I do have a laptop and have purchased the USB cable to program the scanner and it has been WAY easier with the cable and freescan ( a great product). rwier I looked at that site, thank you, I will be loading frequencies from that site before the race and use it during qualifying and practice to make sure they are up to date. Thanks again!
 
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