Idea 4 Uniden = a simple 1 knob TOW TRUCK scanner

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torontokris

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Just thowing out an idea to Uniden (or others GRE etc).

Make a scanner thats a simple 1 knob scanner... you turn the knob to the system/talkgroup you want to listen to. Similar to a professional Motorola radio (say a Maxtrac where it says 1A 1B or a Spectra where its a button to go to the next talkgroup).

Yes that creates huge limitations compared to the 100 quick-keys and 25,000 channel BCD996XT Uniden currently has. And creates programming complexities (you need to program the radio FULLY AND PROPERLY from the start on a PC... there is no locking out, or adding on the fly)

This radio would NOT be for the general hobby listener on this site but mainly TOWING applications where they only need 1 channel on at a time. Heck it could be a basic 15x / 996XT without all the buttons and features and only the scroll wheel that changes systems.


Please note this radio would NOT be for me, (before someone comments or sends a link on how to use a Uniden scanner or its features) I do know how to use a Uniden scanner... BUT there are a LOT of customers who dont know how. They hit a button and it goes downhill from there. Yes we all know how to turn off Close Call without looking at the radio, but a lot of customers do not.

Other suggestions.
ADD A KEYPAD LOCK TO THE BASE UNITS... this has been a huge pain. Disable all keys. Different from system hold or key safe mode.

have an option to DISABLE THE CC / PUSH SQUELCH BUTTON in the menu... and not be able to turn on via the squelch button
 

radioman2001

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I used to build such applications for tows in NYC (they were prohibited from having a radio in the truck). Using an existing radio(Scanner etc), just install an external speaker with a volume knob on the dash. Some of the elaborate ones I seen were the radio hidden in a hollowed out car battery installed under the hood, with wires hooked up to make it look like a dual battery setup for the truck.
 

scanningisfun

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I think that if tow truck drivers really want to listen, they can learn how to use a scanner. I don't think Uniden would get much sales off of something like that.

Jacob
 

mancow

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Might make a neat Arduino project. The existing one could be dumbed down easily enough to do just that.
 

torontokris

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True compared to the general scanner market it would be a smaller market... but there is demand there.
Whod have thought Uniden would do a $140 aircraft scanner that doesnt trunk (when a full trunktracker 3 with aircraft band is $199).


Obviously the better solution is just the general line of produced scanners and a full keypad lock disabling close call and use of quick keys 1-9 only to simplify things.



I think that if tow truck drivers really want to listen, they can learn how to use a scanner. I don't think Uniden would get much sales off of something like that.

Jacob
 

ProScan

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torontokris, whatever you're smoking, you may want to use different stuff. Legitimate tow companies are dispatched with 2-way radios. Bandit tows which are illegal would have a need for a regular scanner.
 

giguchan

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I remember back in the day the "rouge" tow truck drivers used single freq Moto Minitor pagers.. in their hopped up pick up trucks.... dangerous lot they were too..
 

n9mxq

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torontokris, whatever you're smoking, you may want to use different stuff. Legitimate tow companies are dispatched with 2-way radios. Bandit tows which are illegal would have a need for a regular scanner.
I work for a legitimate tow company and we are NOT dispatched by radio, unless you want to pick nits and say our cells are really radio, which they are.

Each of us also carry a scanner. When we're working in the shop it gives us a heads up on accidents and arrests so we can get ready. Our area works on a Rotation List, and we know when it's "Our Turn."

I can see some people using a scanner/radio as described by the OP. I do this with my PRO-96. Bank 1 is local PD, Bank 2 is Tollway Maint, Bank 3 is ISP. Depending on where my tow call is, I switch banks and lock out the unwanted traffic.
 

torontokris

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lol I must be smoking diesel fuel from all hundreds of tow trucks in Toronto that are NOT dispatched via 2-way radios. It is LEGAL to chase in most parts of Toronto (city and highway) as well as a lot of Ontario.

These are all legitimate companies... and the police forces not only know about them but call out for the "next available" tow truck on a frequency designed to be heard on a scanner.

For the creator of ProScan (a program that many tows use to program thier scanners) im SHOCKED at your un-true and demeaning relpy towards myself and tow trucks.

luckily there aren't many Toronto tows on this list or they would be replying with some anger at the mention they are not legitimate and they are illegal.

The only argument that could be made for illegal is using the scanner in contravention of the radio laws in Canada (using the radio for personal gain etc). But so far that has not been done.


Anyways yes tow trucks using scanners in Toronto in the truck ARE LEGAL, LEGITMATE, and even the 1st available tow trucks are called for BY THE POLICE over the police radio (to be heard on thescanner).





torontokris, whatever you're smoking, you may want to use different stuff. Legitimate tow companies are dispatched with 2-way radios. Bandit tows which are illegal would have a need for a regular scanner.
 

EJB

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Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (BlackBerry; U; BlackBerry 9300; en) AppleWebKit/534.8+ (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/6.0.0.526 Mobile Safari/534.8+)

The Greater Toronto Area has many different regional laws regarding tows. Peel and Toronto are first come first served. In Halton on city streets there is a list of preferred companies and they rotate

I bought my 396T years ago off a tow trucker. He was not allowed to have a scanner, maybe the company he worked for frowned upon it but I don't think there is a law anywhere in Ontario where you can't have a scanner if you are a tow.

With the flow of millions of cars a day here, all the cities, counties with a' first come' rule is beneficial, it seems to me that the police here appreciate when tows arrive on scene :)
 

VE3RADIO

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torontokris, whatever you're smoking, you may want to use different stuff. Legitimate tow companies are dispatched with 2-way radios. Bandit tows which are illegal would have a need for a regular scanner.

Where are you getting your info? You are way off base sir... by NO means is it illegal for a tow to use a scanner here in Canada where the OP and myself happen to be.. in fact a lot of the time the police up here call out for first available tows over the air on their trunk system... I really would have to wonder who the one smoking anything is.
 

VE3RADIO

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torontokris, whatever you're smoking, you may want to use different stuff. Legitimate tow companies are dispatched with 2-way radios. Bandit tows which are illegal would have a need for a regular scanner.

Terribly sorry.. I see you live in California.. I guess the rest of the world does not exist outside of Cali eh? Typical.
 
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n9mxq

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Unfortunately another case of "If it's illegal here, it's illegal everywhere-itis"

Stay safe on the roads Brother and Sister Tow Operators..
 

tonsoffun

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It is LEGAL to chase in most parts of Toronto (city and highway) as well as a lot of Ontario.
Ah I wouldn't say its legal Torontokris, but they do it anyways. Just a couple of days ago on the 400 two Ringo tow trucks where rushing to the scene on the shoulder of the highway, but there was two tows already there. Lets just say the OPP cars were there waiting for them to have a little talk.:p

But yes, the forces up here do call for first available tows over the TG's
 
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kd7ckq

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Our local tow companies are dispatched by the Police on the main Dispatch channel. They give them a blind call and rotate companies. If one doesn't show up in a timely fashion they loose their turn. I guess it's different all over.
 

webstar22

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torontokris, whatever you're smoking, you may want to use different stuff. Legitimate tow companies are dispatched with 2-way radios. Bandit tows which are illegal would have a need for a regular scanner.
Wow and to think they could be looking for programming software for these new scanners. Yet now since you made fun of it they will go someplace else. Not the first time either you have shot yourself in the foot with comments that bash scanner owners.
 
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OCO

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Ah I wouldn't say its legal Torontokris, but they do it anyways. Just a couple of days ago on the 400 two Ringo tow trucks where rushing to the scene on the shoulder of the highway, but there was two tows already there. Lets just say the OPP cars were there waiting for them to have a little talk.:p

But yes, the forces up here do call for first available tows over the TG's
It is a regional thing....

Back a few years (mid 60's !) I worked part time for a wildcatter in metro Detroit.(enlightening experience for a small town boy......) Chris used single channel crystal controlled convertors with AM broadcast band output that went inline in the radio antenna lead. He had several crystals for whatever precincts we happened to be in. This was, at the time, illegal, along with soliciting tow work. If the wrong officer was at the scene, the first thing to do was open the glove box and pull the crystal. All that seemed to be forgiven by the PDs if the tow work was a car spread over three lanes of the Ford Expressway at rush hour. (unless you were running the shoulder and blocked the Freeway Patrol car trying to get to the accident). If things were really bad, you could even get an officer to run the winch controls while you were hooking... Sounds like Toronto area kind of winks and looks the other way regarding the legality - and I don't blame them, with the massive traffic tieups a simple PDA can cause.
 
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Dann

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There are a few big citys in the US that just do a general call out and the Tows respond to to the accident,the first one gets the wreck.I drove a Tow for 20 years and always had a scanner in the truck.Never had a problem with LEOs.
 

giguchan

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I dont know about NYC but i think they can still "Chase" which is not very safe, but people above my pay grade made that decision and have to live with it. I think that to pickup tows on any major hiways in NYC you have to have an orange towtruck.. special company

I live in Suffolk county. It's a bit more civilized here. the Towing companies are on a list. they pay to be on that list. I believe that when a tow is needed that the person has a choice to call their private tow(on their dime) if that is not the case the PO on scene can call for a tow "off the list" if that truck does not show up within a decent time the PO can call for"another off the list" the first truck that did not show up either gets removed from the list or gets put on the bottom of the list(like cabs that wait for fares) if an Un aurthorized Tow truck shows up... they can get into big trouble... I think that is the way it works here in suffolk... if i am wrong please correct me.
 

torontokris

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if the tow is driving dangerously to get to the scene (speeding, driving on the shoulder etc).. then yes they will get a stern warning/be told " take the rest of the day off" / dont show up to any more scenes.

But in general its legal to chase isnt it? (or should we say - the 1st tow on scene gets the tow) ... long as the first tow gets to the scene was following the traffic laws and on complaints were called in.


Ah I wouldn't say its legal Torontokris, but they do it anyways. Just a couple of days ago on the 400 two Ringo tow trucks where rushing to the scene on the shoulder of the highway, but there was two tows already there. Lets just say the OPP cars were there waiting for them to have a little talk.:p

But yes, the forces up here do call for first available tows over the TG's
 
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