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GMRS repeater linking and the FCC

Echo4Thirty

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Oct 6, 2021
Messages
748
Location
Spring,TX
I think their usage of the term "simulcast" may be different from the usual way we think of it. Can anyone familiar with this system describe if it's a set of linked individual repeaters that carry the same traffic or is it a true simulcast of multiple transmitters on the same frequency as we typically think of it.

As far as the relationship between the fcc agent and the custodian, there is nothing particularly unusual about that as I have outlined above when you work in a part 90 type career.

The fcc is very reactionary and I would imagine that complaints came in about this system and other linked GMRS systems and thus now they are obligated to investigate. This is no different than how they operate in the part 90 and part 73 services.

I am interested in why a request was put in the email for the list of call signs of users.

Thank you for posting the follow up video.
 

smcbmt

Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2024
Messages
13
I think their usage of the term "simulcast" may be different from the usual way we think of it. Can anyone familiar with this system describe if it's a set of linked individual repeaters that carry the same traffic or is it a true simulcast of multiple transmitters on the same frequency as we typically think of it.

As far as the relationship between the fcc agent and the custodian, there is nothing particularly unusual about that as I have outlined above when you work in a part 90 type career.

The fcc is very reactionary and I would imagine that complaints came in about this system and other linked GMRS systems and thus now they are obligated to investigate. This is no different than how they operate in the part 90 and part 73 services.

I am interested in why a request was put in the email for the list of call signs of users.

Thank you for posting the follow up video.
The request for call signs is what piqued my interest from the outset.
 

K6GBW

Member
Joined
May 29, 2016
Messages
536
Location
Montebello, CA
So the agent asked for call signs. So what? Why does everything have to be some grand government conspiracy? No one has a "right" to use the airwaves at all. The "privilege" is extended by license. So asking who was on the air is just that..asking. Nothing to see here.
 

KV4BL

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 13, 2004
Messages
60
I hope the FCC finally puts the squeeze on GMRS linking. It is such a waste of those precious few (eight) pairs and 50 watt simplex channels. What I don't get, is if the NYS system was "simulcast" in the way I am thinking, it was only utilizing one pair, not multiple pairs. Why not go after the linked systems using up the most spectrum first, whatever their means of linking might be. The FCC needs to just make a blanket rule against any repeater linking on GMRS, PERIOD!
 

Hans13

Member
Joined
Dec 30, 2014
Messages
1,004
Again, you are in a fantasy land. There are no "old" rules. Read 95.333 and 95.1733.8. If what the YouTuber says is correct, the FCC enforcement bureau, that is, the one who ENFORCES current rules, contacted licensees and advised them to cease and desist.
At the end of the day, the FCC's opinion is the only one that matters. One's license is a privilege not a right, and the FCC isn't an agency that operates by criminal evidentiary rules- they find fact with those who violate their rules, and issue NOVs and NALs accordingly, and modify/suspend/revoke accordingly. Sue them if you don't like it. Bring lots of lawyers and money too.
Hopefully the FCC will issue a public notice, or post the NOV or correspondence so the entitlement crowd will shut their traps, stop being part 95 pigs, and get or use their ham tickets and spectrum and move on.
No. That is not the way our republic works. The FCC's opinion might carry a lot of weight (but, that is being weakened through recent SCOTUS dismantling of deference) and have consequences in the immediate, this is still supposed to be a government of the People, for the People, and by the People. A bureaucracy, at the end of the whole drawn out process, will not be the final say.

That's the only nit I had to pick with your post. :)
 

nokones

Newbie
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 19, 2011
Messages
411
Location
Sun City West, AZ
The system owner is using a voting comparator. That his system is a true simulcast transmitting system where multiple transmitting sites are on the same freq and transmitting simultaneously and phased. There would be no common reason to use a true voting comparator on a multi-site system that involves different receive and/or transmit freqs.

"Some People" don't know what a simulcast system is. They think it's multiple systems on different freqs transmitting at the same time or patched together. If that is the case, that would be a "Multicast System".
 

MTS2000des

5B2_BEE00 Czar
Joined
Jul 12, 2008
Messages
5,420
Location
Cobb County, GA Stadium Crime Zone
Either way, it isn't permitted per the rules as written as one cannot use control links to carry GMRS communications- and now that the FCC is conducting actual enforcement actions, we shall see if this is a "one off" case or they go full force and release a public notice. It would be in their best interest to shut up all the "don't tell me NO" crowd if a they released a public notice reiterating 95.333 and 95.1733 the way they did with BDA/DAS. Of course, rules are only meaningful if enforced.

The bottom line is, GMRS is not a quasi-ham or quasi part 90 radio service. The intent is for short range (1-25 mile) simplex and single site repeaters for private use by individuals and families, not radio clubs, prepper whacker foundations, or wanna-be SMRs. Simulcast, voting, multi-cast, P25, NXDN, DMR....go play on the HAM bands where it's fine to experiment to one's heart content or if one wants to play Nextel, get the part 90 licenses and frequency coordinator assigned channels and go to town. Stop trying to put a square peg in a round hole.
 

vagrant

ker-muhj-uhn
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Nov 19, 2005
Messages
3,258
Location
California
As an amateur radio operator I welcome the "Simulcast, voting, multi-cast, P25, NXDN, DMR...." Amateur radio bands are where the fun is at for operating and experimenting.

As a GMRS user I am in agreement with the wording used on the FCC web page. "The GMRS is available to an individual for short-distance two-way communications to facilitate the activities of licensees and their immediate family members."
 

W8UU

Pilot of the Airwaves
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Nov 22, 2007
Messages
332
Location
Wellston OH
Either way, it isn't permitted per the rules as written as one cannot use control links to carry GMRS communications- and now that the FCC is conducting actual enforcement actions, we shall see if this is a "one off" case or they go full force and release a public notice. It would be in their best interest to shut up all the "don't tell me NO" crowd if a they released a public notice reiterating 95.333 and 95.1733 the way they did with BDA/DAS. Of course, rules are only meaningful if enforced.

The bottom line is, GMRS is not a quasi-ham or quasi part 90 radio service. The intent is for short range (1-25 mile) simplex and single site repeaters for private use by individuals and families, not radio clubs, prepper whacker foundations, or wanna-be SMRs. Simulcast, voting, multi-cast, P25, NXDN, DMR....go play on the HAM bands where it's fine to experiment to one's heart content or if one wants to play Nextel, get the part 90 licenses and frequency coordinator assigned channels and go to town. Stop trying to put a square peg in a round hole.

I hope you can hear me clapping as loud as I can over your post.
Agree 1000%.
Linked repeaters clog the pipes for everyone.
I'd rather listen to vacant frequencies with occasional simplex traffic than hours of linked garbage from halfway across the country.
Get a ham license, make yourself an internet chat group, or buy a cell phone. Not on GMRS.
 

MTS2000des

5B2_BEE00 Czar
Joined
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Messages
5,420
Location
Cobb County, GA Stadium Crime Zone
I hope you can hear me clapping as loud as I can over your post.
I really hope the FCC is listening and will put out that public notice. Of course there will be scofflaws who won't comply, but if they get caught up in the enforcement bureau's web, they cannot say they didn't know, even though 95.333 and 95.1733 have been on the books for years and make it pretty clear to me: NO LINKS CARRYING GMRS COMMUNICATIONS, only for CONTROL OF REPEATERS (i.e. repeat on and off- that's it).
 

marcotor

I ♥ÆS Ø
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Joined
Nov 4, 2004
Messages
1,181
Location
Sunny SoCal
But.. but.. if repeaters aren't linked, how can we all enjoy:

Breathless "radio check, repeater check, audio check" calls?
Daily "I got my $7 Amazon "Nagoya" antenna today, it's 4 feet long! Trying it out. Do I get into the repeater at 5500' with it?"
Hourly WXXX,XXX monitoring (mobile, the base, the home20, etc.).
Endless political dribble.
The whacktatd driving around sporting a massive erection while he is "spotting" a Brush Fire
Or the "first responder" REACTard who offers to beat up an old man when said old man laughs at his self-appointed title.
 

mbnv992

Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2009
Messages
586
Location
AZ
Living in Phoenix, there’s TONS of GMRS linked repeaters. PHX is linked with New Mexico, Colorado at times, and they even open up other further away states as well. It definitely clogs up the bandwidth. Then you have the “radio checkers” from all across the states, the trouble makers who play music and cuss, etc etc. GMRS is a huge mess in my area.
It could be so much better without the linking.

Not to mention the nets that talk about your favorite color, most used condom brand and size , etc etc
 

mmckenna

I ♥ Ø
Joined
Jul 27, 2005
Messages
24,386
Location
I am a lineman for the county.
Living in Phoenix, there’s TONS of GMRS linked repeaters. PHX is linked with New Mexico, Colorado at times, and they even open up other further away states as well. It definitely clogs up the bandwidth. Then you have the “radio checkers” from all across the states, the trouble makers who play music and cuss, etc etc. GMRS is a huge mess in my area.
It could be so much better without the linking.

Not to mention the nets that talk about your favorite color, most used condom brand and size , etc etc

I was recently driving through the southwest and I was surprised by the amount of GMRS traffic. Wasn't a lot of places where I was not hearing that network.
 

mbnv992

Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2009
Messages
586
Location
AZ
I was recently driving through the southwest and I was surprised by the amount of GMRS traffic. Wasn't a lot of places where I was not hearing that network.
Yeppp.
I’m actually a member of the PHX GMRS repeater club. The repeater is linked with Mesa, Scottsdale, and Flagstaff - with the option of Zello ( which sounds absolutely horrible IMO ). Only reason I’m a member is because of the Traffic and Weather nets which actually is very informative on my drive out of hell ( Phoenix ). Those nets are every M-F 0630-9 and 1630-1800. They go over traffic accidents, road closures and weather.


They also have a net every Tuesday night along with an “emergency services group” net after.

The Towers 600 repeater has a net every Sunday afternoon with almost 200 check-in’s.

They had to make several repeaters a paid only membership to use since they’ve been bombarded with guys using profanity and dead-keyers

One repeater was so bad they ended up using MDC in order to key up so it would open the repeater up - and they’d assign an MDC ID out and the only way the repeater would open up is if you had a preprogrammed MDC ID.
 

nokones

Newbie
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 19, 2011
Messages
411
Location
Sun City West, AZ
Yeppp.
I’m actually a member of the PHX GMRS repeater club. The repeater is linked with Mesa, Scottsdale, and Flagstaff - with the option of Zello ( which sounds absolutely horrible IMO ). Only reason I’m a member is because of the Traffic and Weather nets which actually is very informative on my drive out of hell ( Phoenix ). Those nets are every M-F 0630-9 and 1630-1800. They go over traffic accidents, road closures and weather.


They also have a net every Tuesday night along with an “emergency services group” net after.

The Towers 600 repeater has a net every Sunday afternoon with almost 200 check-in’s.

They had to make several repeaters a paid only membership to use since they’ve been bombarded with guys using profanity and dead-keyers

One repeater was so bad they ended up using MDC in order to key up so it would open the repeater up - and they’d assign an MDC ID out and the only way the repeater would open up is if you had a preprogrammed MDC ID.
SWCRS has two three -site simulcast systems, one in Tucson and one in Albuquerque. Hopefully, someday the Yuma area and areas in-between will have GMRS repeater coverage.
 

AK9R

Lead Wiki Manager and almost an Awesome Moderator
Super Moderator
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Jul 18, 2004
Messages
9,616
Location
Central Indiana
One repeater was so bad they ended up using MDC in order to key up so it would open the repeater up - and they’d assign an MDC ID out and the only way the repeater would open up is if you had a preprogrammed MDC ID.
That's also a way to keep the users with cheap radios from using the repeaters.
 

nokones

Newbie
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Joined
Feb 19, 2011
Messages
411
Location
Sun City West, AZ
That's also a way to keep the users with cheap radios from using the repeaters.
That is Pinal Peak operated by the SWCRS with coverage south of Phoenix and the Casa Grande and Florence areas and linked with Shaw Butte, Towers 600, Diamond Point, Greens Peak, Mt. Elden, Mt. Lemmon, Heliograph, and one other site in East Arizona that I can't remember and a few sites in New Mexico. I believe Pinal is full-time linked with no local repeat mode whereas the aforementioned sites are configured for both local and link modes.

I wouldn't be surprised that the Towers 575 repeater end up like Pinal using MDC 1200 signalling in the near future. I'm sure that will be the way of the future for repeater owners to manage their repeater .systems.

So far, I haven't had the need to take those drastic measures for my repeater.
 
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