ICOM IC-2720h Narrowband

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n4rpd

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I use my IC-2720h as my main HAM transceiver in my truck and occasionally use it to communicate with my volunteer fire agency on the VHF public safety band. The fire station is rebanding all their radios to narrowband this month and I am now having issues with talking back and forth with them. I thought that it would be an easy fix to set the TX deviation to a similar 12.5khz length, but I cannot find where the setting is in the menus.

Anyone have any ideas?
 

kayn1n32008

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It is a ham radio, it will NOT do 2.5KHz devation.
 

mmckenna

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Some newer ham radios will do 2.5khz deviation just fine. What the issue here is that a firefighter is using a hacked amateur radio for public safety service. While I know I'll get flamed for this, I gotta say it anyway. If you are going to be a public safety professional, at least use the right tools. Hacking an amateur radio transceiver to work on your fire departments frequencies may be a cheap solution, but so is buying a part 90 accepted radio.

I don't know if the Icom will do narrow band or not, but you should be using the proper radio for the job, especially in the fire service where someones life may depend on your radio. There can be issues with using a radio like that out of band. Some have filters that prevent spurious emissions from interfering with other radio users. Bypassing the limitations of the radio to get around that can cause issues for others that are working within the rules.

Please tell me you put that radio on an analyzer after modifying it to see if it as at least still running clean when you are outside the amateur band?
 

AK9R

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According to the IC-2720 Instruction Manual (page 59), one of the Set Mode functions toggles the radio between Wide and Narrow. The wording in the manual is "Sets both the transmission and reception passband width from wide and narrow. When narrow is set, the transmission deviation and reception passband width become half of the wide setting (approx.). This setting can be set for each memory, call and VFO independently. This item appears when set mode is accessed from the left band only." The instructions for getting into Set Mode start on page 56.

Having said that, the radio still will not do 7.5 or 2.5 kHz tuning steps which you will need for some of the new narrowband VHF frequency assignments.
 

SCPD

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Maybe we both should get flamed

... While I know I'll get flamed for this, I gotta say it anyway. If you are going to be a public safety professional, at least use the right tools. Hacking an amateur radio transceiver to work on your fire departments frequencies may be a cheap solution, but so is buying a part 90 accepted radio ...
And while I know I'll get flamed for this, I gotta say it anyway:

Someone wants to know how to modify their ham radio to go out of band for their "work" frequency.
When the question is "How do I do it?", I think the only replies should be on how to do it.
If the question is "Can I do it", or "Should I do it", I think a reply like yours is right.

This is the 21st century here, not the 70's when ham radios had more harmonics than a blues band.
They may not be type accepted, but all modern ham radio transcievers are just as tight as any commercial gear. If the OP was a public safety professional, the city or township he worked for would buy the radio for him. He's a volunteer, cut 'em some slack, he probably has to buy his own radio. And even if it's not quite right, if I was a volunteer firefighter, I'd do the same thing. mainly 'cuz why have two radios taking up real estate in the truck that can do the same thing.
 

mmckenna

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Because the price you pay for an Icom 2720 will just as easily purchase a new Icom mobile with the proper certifications, proper specifications, and capabilities to do the job correctly.

I fully understand the limitations on volunteer fire fighters, but they are no different or no more special than any of the rest of us. Choosing to follow the rules or not is a conscious choice that each of us make. When human lives hang on the line, choosing between a properly designed radio and a hacked amateur radio, shouldn't be a tough one. It should be a no-brainer.

And yes, modern amateur gear is much cleaner than the older stuff, but each and every radio is different, and unless they have been put on a service monitor, there is no way to know if it is aligned properly for the frequencies outside of the designed area of operations. Blanket assumptions that "it's modern so it's OK" doesn't fly.

What ticks me off worse is that government, local, state or federal, take your pick, is spending billions on technology to solve interoperability issues that either do not exist, or could be solved cheaper and with more personnel training. If agencies were not being forced to spend outrageous amounts of money on overpriced radios that they don't need, maybe they could afford to outfit those that really need radios with the correct equipment.

It disappoints me to see a licensed amateur radio operator thumbing his nose at the rules. It disappoints me more to see someone who obviously has a need for a proper radio not having one due to government stupidity.
 

AK9R

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Guys, if all you want to do is debate the legal or ethical issues behind the OP's question, please take it somewhere else.
 

N4KVE

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Because the price you pay for an Icom 2720 will just as easily purchase a new Icom mobile with the proper certifications, proper specifications, and capabilities to do the job correctly.
It is quite possible the OP already owned the Icom 2720 for several years before he decided to join the volunteer FD. While technically, the radio is only approved for the ham freq's, if the OP puts his life on the line for the city for no pay, & the city doesn't supply an approved radio, & the 2720 seems to work fine, who cares? If the city complains, let them supply approved radios. I thank the OP for his service. GARY N4KVE
 
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