- Dec 22, 2013
Great observations. Some comments on what I have quoted above.I have found this thread interesting and educational, at least until tonight. So here are a few observations:
As of this spring, however, there *is* a new GMRS repeater in Western NY that I can hear loud and clear and they are trying to get people to sign up for it. My first thought was, why? Why would I want to use a GMRS repeater instead of 2 meter or 70 cm ham repeater?
5) But back to the "Part 90" radio recommendation. Yes, to paraphrase, Part 95E says that a radio capable of transmitting on a non-GMRS frequency cannot be certified for GMRS unless it's certified for another service where certification is required (aka Part 90). It does NOT, however, say that "Part 90 radios are automatically certified for GMRS" as some have suggested. But when I asked which Part 90 radios were also Part 95E I was told, "oh you can go look at the certification database on the FCC website".
Ha, ha, ha.
Yes, I *could*, and I have done so in the past. But again, is "Joe or Jane PotentialGMRSUser" going to do that, or even have a clue what any of that means? My bet is no.
1) As far as Ham vs GMRS. And I am sure you know this. They are totally different services. If you want family communications you could get the whole clan to take the technician test etc. Yes I have even met whole families of hams, with a young daughter working satellites. Terrific! But that is not the usual family dynamic. Folks who want something a step up from CB choose GMRS for family communications. In some Rural areas, Georgia and North Carolina, there are many linked GMRS repeaters because folks have crappy cell service. In Arizona, there are some high altitude repeaters (Big Tanks) that serve a huge footprint.
2) The FCC certification look up is broken, terribly broken. There is a third party FCC.IO that works and if you bang around you can find the actual FCC grant and learn that the XyZ company GMRS radio has some weak 9K3F3E modulation and has a power output of 353 milliwatts. No kidding a lot of consumer junk. I have been surprised and found many radios that are certified. Motorola Systems Saber for one.
You can buy new GMRS radios from some dealers who will swear up and down that they are compliant, but really they are not. Check out Rugged Radios and others.
Just an FYI. The FCC has never issued a violation to any GMRS operator for using a radio that was not certified. Not saying I endorse it, but that is the reality.
There are a lot of older dual part 90 Part 95 radios in circulation on the ebay and other sites. I am sure a freindly Kenwood dealer has a few under the desk as they were plentiful in taxi cab service.