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GMRS uses?

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cpsTN

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I know you need a license and, from what I have found online, there is no exam to take to get a GMRS license. I know the freqs inter-mingle with FRS and that the maximum output you can use is 50w, but I have not found any specifics for the current uses of GMRS, nor anything relating to the range of such radios, handheld or not. I know its use is "G"eneral, but is it mostly business, like construction or what?
 

iMONITOR

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I know you need a license and, from what I have found online, there is no exam to take to get a GMRS license. I know the freqs inter-mingle with FRS and that the maximum output you can use is 50w, but I have not found any specifics for the current uses of GMRS, nor anything relating to the range of such radios, handheld or not. I know its use is "G"eneral, but is it mostly business, like construction or what?

When using GMRS on FRS frequencies, you are only allowed to use channels 1 - 7, and only a maximum of 5 watts under those circumstances.

GMRS used to be popular with businesses, but the FCC has shifted it's direction to be more of a family radio system, similar to FRS, but with more power, and options such as repeaters. There are still some businesses that are grandfathered in, and can continue to use GMRS. New businesses can also use GMRS, but each employee using the radios needs to obtain their own personal license, so it's not an attractive option. It's not the kind of radio service where you can expect to get on the air, call CQ, and get several replies and talk radio all night. Odds are you're going to get some little kids, or some lawn maintenance guys. Don't count on it for any kind of emergency help.

Range varies due to terrain, etc. But typically radio to radio, about 1-5 miles, depending on power and antennas. If you go through a repeater, then again, depending on many variables, maybe 10-30 miles.

I think for most people, your just as well of with a couple good quality FRS radios, and no license fee.
 

cpsTN

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When using GMRS on FRS frequencies, you are only allowed to use channels 1 - 7, and only a maximum of 5 watts under those circumstances.

GMRS used to be popular with businesses, but the FCC has shifted it's direction to be more of a family radio system, similar to FRS, but with more power, and options such as repeaters. There are still some businesses that are grandfathered in, and can continue to use GMRS. New businesses can also use GMRS, but each employee using the radios needs to obtain their own personal license, so it's not an attractive option. It's not the kind of radio service where you can expect to get on the air, call CQ, and get several replies and talk radio all night. Odds are you're going to get some little kids, or some lawn maintenance guys. Don't count on it for any kind of emergency help.

Range varies due to terrain, etc. But typically radio to radio, about 1-5 miles, depending on power and antennas. If you go through a repeater, then again, depending on many variables, maybe 10-30 miles.

I think for most people, your just as well of with a couple good quality FRS radios, and no license fee.
I have a pair of recharchable Uniden FRS/GMRS transceivers (GMR638-2CK). I don't know how these rate compared to others of the FRS lines or to the GMR638-2 and GMR638-3CK.
 

auxscan

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I thought using GMRS for private/bussiness use was a penalty. for about $300. I think MURS & FRS fall into the category for bussniess. FRS 1/2 watt maxium. will only get you about 2-3 blocks. MURS 2 watts maxium, can get 1-2 miles. I like murs better since its far range. when i worked in target a couple years ago. I bought my own radio had it programmed to MURS Ch 1-5 2 watts and had public safety/trains/marine for RX only. When i went home about 2 miles away i can hear everything on murs ch 2 from the target i worked in lol.
 

N1SQB

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It's All In The Programming!

It really is!
If you use radios other than the buble-pack type, you can program them the way you want and make it as personal as you want. While GMRS will never be the main radio for emergencies, it does make it a more easier tool for the family to use during emergencies and/or family related events. I am a licensed HAM. My wife is also a licensed HAM. My middle daughter (I have 3) is a licensed HAM. I also have a GMRS license. When we practice our emergence drills in the house (emerg. escapes ect...) we use GMRS because everyone in the family can use it without all the HAM calls going out every 10 minutes and such. Plus it allows my other 2 daughters to participate since they are not HAMS yet! I listen in constantly for "kiddie" traffic. This allows me to choose a channel. I then program my radios to that channel. I use one PL for TX and say a DPL for RX. Most people who own these bubble packs have no clue about the proper use of PL/DPL tones. As long as we don't say anything of a personal nature, we're good! Have not had one problem with interference yet in the last 3 years since we moved here....While GMRS is NOT our primary means of communicating, it is another tool in the whole emergency readiness package that we use as a family. We dont rely on it as a primary source, but we don't discard it altogether either. In a real emergency, anything and everything counts........ Just a thought....

Manny
 
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hockeyshrink

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What GMRS IS and is NOT

It really is!
If you use radios other than the buble-pack type, you can program them the way you want and make it as personal as you want. While GMRS will never be the main radio for emergencies, it does make it a more easier tool for the family to use during emergencies and/or family related events. I am a licensed HAM. My wife is also a licensed HAM. My middle daughter (I have 3) is a licensed HAM. I also have a GMRS license. When we practice our emergence drills in the house (emerg. escapes ect...) we use GMRS because everyone in the family can use it without all the HAM calls going out every 10 minutes and such. Plus it allows my other 2 daughters to participate since they are not HAMS yet! I listen in constantly for "kiddie" traffic. This allows me to choose a channel. I then program my radios to that channel. I use one PL for TX and say a DPL for RX. Most people who own these bubble packs have no clue about the proper use of PL/DPL tones. As long as we don't say anything of a personal nature, we're good! Have not had one problem with interference yet in the last 3 years since we moved here....While GMRS is NOT our primary means of communicating, it is another tool in the whole emergency readiness package that we use as a family. We dont rely on it as a primary source, but we don't discard it altogether either. In a real emergency, anything and everything counts........ Just a thought....

Manny
I really agree with Manny's approach to GMRS. Indeed, it is intended as a Personal Radio Service (and is covered in Part 95 - Personal Radio Services) specifically to facilitate communications between licensees and their immediate familiies for personal use. It is NOT for business, cops, rent-a-cops, volunteer fire departments, EMS, or any other wackers there may be out there. There are all kinds of spectra available for those folks, GMRS aint it. One does not call "CQ" on GMRS and ragchew with other stations.

GMRS was around long before FRS, and I believe the FCC made a huge mistake mixing the low power FRS service interstitially with GMRS frequencies. Remember when you had to get a license for the 27 mhz CB radio and it was known as Class D CB? GMRS was the Class A service.

I am also a ham, but use GMRS (and MURS) with the family. We use a repeater that covers the town when necessary, otherwise we stay on simplex. For example, I'll drop one kid at the ice rink with an HT in her bag and shuttle the other across town to soccer. They know the call sign and use it, along with proper radio ettiquette.

Check out the FCC website on GMRS:

FCC: Wireless Services: General Mobile Radio Service: GMRS Home

PS: MPSCS, The FCC stopped issuing business licenses in GMRS in 1987 and focused GMRS solely on individual, personal use (although grandfathered "entities" can renew and continue to operate).

PPS: auxscan, to the best of my knowlwdge FRS was never intended for business or organizational use, but you are right that MURS originated from the business "dot" channels and remains shared with businesses licensed for operation on those freqs.
 
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iMONITOR

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PS: MPSCS, The FCC stopped issuing business licenses in GMRS in 1987 and focused GMRS solely on individual, personal use (although grandfathered "entities" can renew and continue to operate).

I said that in my post:

"There are still some businesses that are grandfathered in, and can continue to use GMRS. New businesses can also use GMRS, but each employee using the radios needs to obtain their own personal license, so it's not an attractive option."

Also there are no FCC rules against a business using FRS radios.
 

hockeyshrink

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I said that in my post:

"There are still some businesses that are grandfathered in, and can continue to use GMRS. New businesses can also use GMRS, but each employee using the radios needs to obtain their own personal license, so it's not an attractive option."

Also there are no FCC rules against a business using FRS radios.
I gotcha; however, I think/believe/IMHO business operation in GMRS (except those duly grandfathered) is outside the "intent" of the service. That's indeed why they no longer issue new business licenses, right? Even if employees obtain their own GMRS licenses, as ridiculous as that is, I still don't think it legitimizes conducting business communications on GMRS.

Yes, there is no law that I could find against businesses using FRS. I did strike that from my original post b4 your post. However, here again is the issue of "intent." Who would think that the FAMILY Radio Service (emphasis added) was created for businesses or organizations to conduct their work? Reality is that it has become a readily available source of cheap short range communications, and businesses and organizations are seizing that opportunity.

At the end of the day, GMRS, FRS, and MURS are like the old west...there is no law in town and noone really care what goes on there. "People stampeded...cattle raped."
 
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