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Looking to get GMRS license and already have a radio.

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Cruiseomatic

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As the title states, Looking to get a GMRS license soon. As in the next day or so maybe. I already have a radio I was told can work with it once programmed. Actually have two. I only have one here with me and it is a Moto M44DGC90J2AA. Not new to radios by a long shot and looking to expand into other fields while working on a general ticket. Already registered in ULS and only a $70 payment away. My question is, Is it really worth it and having the radio programmed for it? Theres plenty or repeaters near by already. And, I have a friend who is currently licensed but we hardly talk because of work schedules currently.
If anyone can share any input that would be great, And if you're around the Houston area, Even better.
Thanks.
 

Rred

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Nov 21, 2014
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"I already have a radio I was told can work with it once programmed. "
Ask whoever told you that if they meant "You can LEGALLY work with it." Or if they'll pat the penalties for just working on it.

No license? Can't legally use it. Apply, pay, follow the FCC instructions as to how you get your license and when you can use it.

No one to talk to and no plans to talk with it? Then just ignore it and save the money.

Most illegal users get away with it. Some have to ante up six months rent money to pay the penalties.
 

chief21

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Summer - Western NC; Winter - Tampa Bay FL
Because of its limited nature (unlike ham radio or CB), GMRS is intended primarily for family communications. Unless you have family members that are actually interested in radio, or a similar group of GMRS-licensed friends, the GMRS license - and the equipment - won't be of much use to you.

If you are interested in hobby-type communications, continue to pursue the ham radio track. A technician ticket (easy!) will get you access to all VHF and UHF ham bands (and a little bit of HF), which should keep you busy on the way to your General ticket.

John AC4JK
 

Cruiseomatic

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Momma bear is also. She's only been exposed to CB so not much "motivation" to get anything better as far as she knows. I'm slowly working on bringing her into the hobby.
 

Station51

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Oct 17, 2005
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Location
Riverside County, CA
I HAD a GMRS license because I belonged to a now disbanded group of GMRS users. It served its purpose, but I didn't renew it when it expired.
If all you want o do is talk to Mama Bear, just go with FRS radios for which no license is required, but no repeaters either.
I hold a GENERAL class Amateur license and that opens up a world (literally) of communication options.
There are world wide access points thru repeaters as well as many simplex frequencies you can use by just passing a fairly simple test. AND an Amateur license is cheaper!! (valid much longer as well)
In short, is the $70 worth it ? Not to me.
I'm currently listening to a conversation between stations in Oregon, California, Washington, Idaho and Melbourne Australia but its up to you. Good Luck and Good Radio !!
 

swduncan

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Sep 26, 2014
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Some have to ante up six months rent money to pay the penalties.

This I find interesting - I've scoured the FCC enforcement database and haven't yet found a case where someone got busted simply for transmitting on GMRS without a license. A few cases where someone was causing interference while unlicensed, or businesses using them, or were committing some other crime in addition.

But not someone simply using GMRS without a license. I'm sure someone will point me to the relevant document numbers if I've missed something.

Aside from the legal issue, the value of a license is the call sign gives you cred with strangers who otherwise would not respond to your call. This is how life works on the ham bands, though I've not often heard someone doing an open call on GMRS.

The downside of using a call sign is that anyone listening with access to a computer can use it to look up a few personal details, like where licensee lives. Although that's the case with hams as well.
 

Will001

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Dec 1, 2016
Messages
492
Location
Pine Ridge, SC
I got mine back in January, and I DON'T REGRET IT!!! So if I were you, I'd go ahead and get it. GMRS is a fun radio service to talk on.
 

mmckenna

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Is it a good idea to get that radio programmed?
Well, depends on how much you want to spend. You -may- be able to find someone with the correct software and cables to program it for you free or cheap. If you end up taking it to a Motorola shop, expect to pay $40 or more for programming. Also, a decent shop should ask to see your authorization to use those frequencies.

Is GMRS a good idea,
Sure, but depends on what your expectations are.
It's a great solution for talking to family. It'll sound much better than CB and in some cases, work much better.
It's not a radio service that is well suited for making random contacts. Thanks to CTCSS or DCS tones, it's difficult to randomly talk to users.
As for repeaters, it's usually necessary to get permission from the repeater owners. It's not like amateur radio where most repeaters are "open".

I've had an amateur license since the late 1980's. I tried for a long time to get others to get their license, but I finally gave up and got a GMRS license and a couple of appropriate radios. I was able to quickly get family on the radio and it worked great. After a while several were able to get the amateur license and we moved our traffic to 2 meter simplex.

GMRS may be a good solution, but understand the benefits and drawbacks before spending the money.
 
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