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Baofeng Help: uv5r

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THEOPANKHURST

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May 6, 2020
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Hello, I recently purchased a Baofeng uv5r to scan and receive signals as I have not yet got my license. However, I have been unable to pick anything up, so I adjusted the squelch levels using CHIRP and still nothing. As well as this, I have been trying to tune into my local repeater to listen to some signals however I have been unsuccessful at doing this even though I am confident I have got the correct tones and offset and the frequencies. Can anyone help ?
 

alcahuete

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Jul 24, 2015
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Location
Antelope Acres, California
What are you trying to listen to? I'm guessing amateur radio? If you programmed in your local repeater, it's possible that nobody is talking.

Let's start with the basics here. Program the repeater's frequency. Do not use any offset, any tone, nothing. Put the squelch on its lowest setting. You can also program the NOAA weather frequencies. They broadcast all the time, and there should be at least one that you can hear.
 

toofarwest

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Mar 31, 2020
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Location
Polk County, OR
I picked up a UV5R about 2 months ago, just to listen to see what actually happens on the air. Studying for my Tech now.

I used CHIRP, imported the local repeaters, offsets etc, for my County and the neighboring ones, local LEO/EMS that I might be able to pick up

found my local repeater is active several times a day think its 1000 , 1200, about 1900, then randomly throughout the day.

I'm a little rural so I have to find a good location to pick them up, my kitchen window is good, front window to the north, meh, not so much

Try some other places to see if you pick them up, set it to scan for what ever you have programmed in see if it hit on anything.
 

522

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Dec 8, 2007
Messages
407
Location
Murray, Utah
I second the NOAA weather freqs.... at a bare minimum you'll know if the radio is receiving. Good starting point.
 

nd5y

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Dec 19, 2002
Messages
10,243
Location
Wichita Falls, TX
I have been unable to pick anything up, so I adjusted the squelch levels using CHIRP and still nothing.
If you do that wrong you won't be able to hear anything at all. The stock squelch settings are usually good enough.
As well as this, I have been trying to tune into my local repeater to listen to some signals however I have been unsuccessful at doing this even though I am confident I have got the correct tones and offset and the frequencies. Can anyone help ?
Many amateur repeaters are dead 99% of the time. Can you hear them on another radio but not the Baofeng?
Are you using an aftermarket antenna?
Are you within a few miles any FM, TV or other towers?
Can you go outside away from any buildings and see if it works?
Are you in the US or Canada? Other places won't have continuous weather channels that you can check.
 

n5ims

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Jul 25, 2004
Messages
3,936
I agree that initially you should simply program the radio to receive with no tones or offset so you will get any signal on the frequency. That will eliminate many issues (wrong tone for example). Also hold the radio vertically and as high as possible (this should be done outside if you can in an open area).

Other things you can do to see if anything is being transmitted when you're listening is to try a couple of things that your repeater may or may not have available. Easiest is to check Broadcastify.com (or the Broadcastify Live Audio link under RadioReference above) and see if your repeater has a feed there. If so, you can monitor that to know when to check your radio should have a signal available (remember there's a slight delay so quick transmissions from Broadcastify may have already happened on your radio). Also you can download Echolink and try to monitor your repeater using that as well (more repeaters are on Echolink than Broadcastify, but you'll probably already need a license to use Echolink since your call sign most likely will be required to get it working since it can be used to transmit on a remote repeater). If you hear something on Broadcastify or Echolink but not your radio you'll know to check your settings or that you're out of range.

Lastly (actually what I recommend you do first) is to find a local ham radio club (something you'll need to be tested for your license anyway) and attend one of their meetings. Talk to the folks there and ask them for help with your radio. Remember that during a club meeting there may not be time or equipment to actually do much with your radio, but they often have an event designed to help hams work through issues similar to yours. Often they even have regular sessions designed to properly program radios and explain to the operators how to properly use them. Good luck!
 
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