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GMRS question

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RudeboyFlav

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I am new to HAM radios and want to use it for communication with friends when we go overlanding. Will the GMRS license suffice for that? Excuse my ignorance.
 

doc62

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I have both my ham license and my GMRS licence. If your friends are using GMRS you definitely want to get a GMRS license as well if you want to talk to them on GMRS. Remember most if not all Ham equipment is not legal on GMRS so you will need to get a GMRS approved radio as well.
 

RaleighGuy

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I am new to HAM radios and want to use it for communication with friends when we go overlanding. Will the GMRS license suffice for that? Excuse my ignorance.
Neither GMRS or HAM radios can be used without a license by all parties using them, so your friends need a HAM/GMRS license and certified radio as well. But, yes, these radios will work.
 

mmckenna

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Adding a bit to this, even though the guys above covered it….

I am new to HAM radios and want to use it for communication with friends when we go overlanding.
That's fine if you have a valid amateur radio license. If your friends want to talk back to you, each individual will need an amateur radio license of their own.


Will the GMRS license suffice for that? Excuse my ignorance.
GMRS is a good choice. UHF, up to 50 watts, small antennas There is no test to take, only a fee paid to the FCC for a GMRS license. Each FAMILY needs their own license.
Radios need to be FCC Part 95 accepted to use on GMRS, no exceptions. As stated above, amateur radios do NOT have FCC Part 95 certification and are NOT legal to use on GMRS under any circumstances.

What I think you might be asking, and please correct me if I'm wrong:
You would like to communicate with others on the trail using GMRS. = That's fine
You and each family involved will need a GMRS license to do this legally.
No level of amateur radio license gives any permissions what so ever on GMRS. Doesn't matter if you are a technician, general or extra, the ham license will not allow you to legally transmit on GMRS frequencies.
If you are using an amateur radio, it will not have Part 95 certification that is required for use on GMRS. You -must- use a radio that has a valid Part 95 certification, no exceptions.
 

russbrill

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I am new to HAM radios and want to use it for communication with friends when we go overlanding. Will the GMRS license suffice for that? Excuse my ignorance.
If you want to avoid all the licensing issues, you can use FRS radios. The 2 Watt FRS radios are good for vehicle to vehicle and hiking communications..
 

K6GBW

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I use GMRS in my Jeep for running trails. It is perfect for 3-5 miles on the trail. It quieter and cleaner than CB with small antennas that don't get hit by branches, so yes... very much recommended.
 

WB9YBM

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I am new to HAM radios and want to use it for communication with friends when we go overlanding. Will the GMRS license suffice for that? Excuse my ignorance.
It depends in part whether or not your friends have a ham license as well. The ham route definitely offer more options on choosing power levels & frequencies to suit your applications.
 

ko6jw_2

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One other consideration: It is not possible to get a new ham license right now due to COVID-19 issues. Remote licensing is being explored, but no one is doing it as far as I know. On the other hand GMRS is an automated on-line process. It probably still works (anyone tried it lately?).
 

alcahuete

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One other consideration: It is not possible to get a new ham license right now due to COVID-19 issues. Remote licensing is being explored, but no one is doing it as far as I know. On the other hand GMRS is an automated on-line process. It probably still works (anyone tried it lately?).
It is more than being explored, quite a few remote license sessions have been completed by the W5YI group, a bunch just this past weekend.

My friend got his GMRS license a couple weeks ago. There was no noticeable delay at all.
 

alcahuete

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That's great. Any reading on FCC processing times?
Yeah, it's awesome! Processing time for ham licenses? In some cases, almost immediately. W5YI submits everything electronically if I recall. I have heard of people getting their call sign either same day or within a day or two, even during the Covid.
 

russbrill

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It is more than being explored, quite a few remote license sessions have been completed by the W5YI group, a bunch just this past weekend.

My friend got his GMRS license a couple weeks ago. There was no noticeable delay at all.
The Government is always prepared to take your hard earned dollars :)
 

russbrill

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It depends in part whether or not your friends have a ham license as well. The ham route definitely offer more options on choosing power levels & frequencies to suit your applications.
WB9YBM,

But do we want people on the Ham bands using them as a "Tool", or do we want people getting their licenses because they're interested in Radio??? Please don't misunderstand me, I'm for more Hams any day of the week, but only if they're into it for the advancement of the Radio Art, not because it's better than CB.. For people that use radio as a "Tool" and need low cost short range communications, GMRS/FRS is perfect. FRS is license free and a GMRS license costs about $70, no test required just fill out the form..

Just my 2 cents :)

73,
Russ
 

K7MFC

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But do we want people on the Ham bands using them as a "Tool", or do we want people getting their licenses because they're interested in Radio??? Please don't misunderstand me, I'm for more Hams any day of the week, but only if they're into it for the advancement of the Radio Art, not because it's better than CB..
ugh, amateur radio gatekeeping :rolleyes:... You can certainly enjoy it for the "art" of radio, but that doesn't mean someone else's use of amateur radio for recreational purposes is any less valid.
 

WB9YBM

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Hi Russ!

One of the things I enjoy about ham radio is its' diversity--we've got everyone from computer geeks to history enthusiasts that are restoring antiques, and a lot of other stuff in between-I think there might be room for the people you mentioned, too.
 

russbrill

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Hi Russ!

One of the things I enjoy about ham radio is its' diversity--we've got everyone from computer geeks to history enthusiasts that are restoring antiques, and a lot of other stuff in between-I think there might be room for the people you mentioned, too.
I agree, the more the better. I just don't want folks that feel they HAVE TO become a Ham to use radio for Over-the-Road adventures, camping, hunting, etc. etc... GMRS/FRS is perfect for those folks, that's all I'm saying, not trying to exclude anyone from Amateur Radio...
 

ladn

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One other consideration: It is not possible to get a new ham license right now due to COVID-19 issues. Remote licensing is being explored, but no one is doing it as far as I know. On the other hand GMRS is an automated on-line process. It probably still works (anyone tried it lately?).
Actually, the Greater Los Angeles Amateur Radio Group is doing on line testing:

Remotely Administered Exam Sessions

GLAARG has authorized a limited number of VE Teams to conduct remote exams. See this page for more info: Remote Exam FAQs. If that’s not enough (please read it first), you can email us: info@glaarg.org, but we’ll probably just ask you to go back and read the FAQs, because that’s all we know at this time.

It is helpful for the VE Teams if you email or phone the session contact before showing up to take the exam. This helps them plan for the session and make sure there are enough Volunteer Examiners (VEs) on hand to make things go as smoothly as possible.
 
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