Hiding a scanner on public property

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pb_lonny

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We have a couple of local businesses which appear to use two way radios but no "official" record can be found of which frequencies they use. They are both located in areas where sitting around in the car is not really possible / a good idea.

My plan was to mount this scanner in a hard case, set it to close call store mode and hide in close to their offices for a day or so.

What would be the best way to hide the case and secure this?
 

BoxAlarm187

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This just sounds like a terrible idea all the way around.

If the property doesn't lend itself to sitting and monitoring in the car, I don't know that hiding a suspicious black case full of electronics in a business office that you don't have rights to is a good idea.
 

ScannerSK

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You might check the FRS frequencies first as some just opt to use these rather than get a license. The last I checked a few years ago, our town maintenance staff were using CB radios around town.

Could you leave your car parked nearby on the street, have someone pick you up and return later in the day to get it? Just a thought...

Shawn
 

Station51

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What?

I guess I missed the part about WHY you would want to know.
Hmmmm......If you can get a look at the radio(s), the antenna may indicate where to look.
Long=VHF Short= UHF
I'd look in the MURS range (157.57; 154.60 etc) or the may even be using bubble pack Family Radios in the 462 ish range.
All of the above should be preset search configurations in most scanners.
There are a few special idiots that illegally operate on MARINE freqs on land so you might want to look
there as well..
Happy Hunting
 

mmckenna

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I'd agree.
Many years ago when geocaching was new, someone hid a cache at work. Someone who wasn't aware of what geocaching was called the police since it was a suspicious looking package hidden in a public area.
Lots of police, bomb squad, fire department, several hours of closed roads.
I'm the radio tech, and I over heard all this, found the cache on the geocaching.com website and sent it down to dispatch so they could hand it off to the incident command.

The owner of the cache got a good talking to, but no charges pressed.

I'd be really cautious about this. While it may seem harmless, it can go sideways really quickly. Might be as simple as loosing your scanner, might be worse. Then again, you might get away with it and have no issues.
But, what does it gain you? Is this business interfering with you? Is it worth risking your radio?
Maybe a call to the agency that handles telecommunications in Tasmania would be a better choice, legal and less likely to get you into any trouble.

Just my opinion, and I'm just a stranger on the internet, so, there.
 

Thunderknight

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First of all, the OP is not in the USA, so suggesting specific FCC services is not relevant.

I would agree that leaving a box/package unattended (I assume you meant outside) is not a good idea either. I don't know about in Tasmania, but in the US in some metro areas, that could lead to a major law/fire response.
While you say that sitting in a car is not possible, what about a parked car? Are these areas where you could park a car (legally and safely) and come back a few days later?
 

mmckenna

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Guys, he's in Tasmania, unlikely they have MURS or FRS there. Likely there are other similar radio services, but he's not in the USA.
 

pb_lonny

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No FRS here, but it "could" be UHF CB.

The frequency they used to be one is now dead, nothing logged in a year so I suspect they have moved to another frequency or have stopped using radios.

Location is "out of the way" so leaving my car close enough would look very strange. I have checked and they have some bushes on public land which are close to their admin office. I am not sure how to best secure the radio case to this. I suspect it would mean doing it in the very early hours of the morning.
 

natedawg1604

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We have a couple of local businesses which appear to use two way radios but no "official" record can be found of which frequencies they use. They are both located in areas where sitting around in the car is not really possible / a good idea.

My plan was to mount this scanner in a hard case, set it to close call store mode and hide in close to their offices for a day or so.

What would be the best way to hide the case and secure this?
Can you find an area to park within a few miles of the location at an elevation equal to, or preferably higher than, the business? Under the right conditions you can usually monitor simplex radios several miles away, especially with a proper mobile antenna affixed to your vehicle.
 

Delta33

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What if someone finds your radio ?

Still a bad idea, unless your radio is Disposable. 👎
 

jonwienke

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I would make or acquire a LPDA antenna covering the suspected freq range and aim it toward the business(es) from a secure location. Leaving a scanner unattended in the wild is a good way for it to disappear.
 

pb_lonny

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Can you find an area to park within a few miles of the location at an elevation equal to, or preferably higher than, the business? Under the right conditions you can usually monitor simplex radios several miles away, especially with a proper mobile antenna affixed to your vehicle.
I want to use "Close Call" to ensure it is them who I am hearing and no other frequencies.
 

jonwienke

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A directional antenna will help ensure your Close Call hits are coming from the target area.

A LPDA (log-periodic dipole array) antenna can be built to cover a wide frequency range with 10dB or more of gain in front.
 

pb_lonny

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I also need to do this "unattended" which was my reason for setting up a radio and leaving it.
 

RFI-EMI-GUY

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Just put it in a briefcase and come up with a plausible reason to loiter around the place.
 
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