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Motorola MTS2000 Model 1 - w/photos I programmed it I just have a couple questions

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Thinderik

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Happy NFL Play-off weekend! -There

I got this Motorola MTS2k I for Ski patrol this season. The guy the Moutain hires to do the programming said he couldn't do it, so I figured I'd give it a go (assuming I'd fail and have to sell it). Well, it actually friggen worked. Programmed it using my Vista laptop and a serial-usb cable. Something I thought that would be all but impossible from other postings I read.

So after it read the radio and I changed the settings and wrote them to the radio, I naturally assumed that I had done it wrong and when I got to the Mountain it would be a mess. But it seemed to work fine all last night. Except for a couple instances.

Now bear with me here, because for all intents and purposes and I a radio retard (excuse the term).

I was given a post it with the frequencies for the two channels that the mountain uses. Channel 1 is on a "repeater" which I have no idea what it is or if I had to click a box while programming the radio.

They listed a "Tone" of 203.5. I assumed that was the PL frequency since there was an option that matched.

**As I'm writing this I noticed on channel 2 that the PL freq on channel 2's receive portion is still at 156.7 So thats probably why I couldn't hear certain things last night from the Lift attendants.**

One point I moved the "Scan or Secure" selector under the channel selector and I could hear more of what was going on. Now that might have been coincidence, I'm not sure.

Last Question. The antenna I have, doesn't say a particular frequency can you guys recommend a better
one?

I appreciate your help and patience. If you want more pictures or anything just ask.

Derik
 

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cmdrwill

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Looks backwards.
Repeaters transmit low and receive high.
So, 464 would be the receive in your radio, 469 would be transmit.
464 RX and TX would be simplex.
 

yaknamedjak

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The switch on top is programmable by you. Sometimes I program it to Tx Inhibit on pos 1 and blank on pos2 so I can inhibit TX and prevent accidental TX on scene or doing work

You are correct, tone is PL.

As long as the TX and rx frequencies and tones are correct that's what you need to program a repeater. Cmdrwill is correct it seems like u have them backwards.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Thinderik

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Can't thank you both enough. I'll switch it around when I get back home today.

I was able to transmit and have it be broadcast through my fellow patrollers radios, but I'm sure what that would really show or prove. I'll flip em, you guys know more then I do😀.

Seriously though, I appreciate your time. And I'm sure I'll have more questions in the future.
 

Thinderik

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If ch2 is not a repeater then tx and rx should be the same.
That picture of the post it note was the information given to me by the "professional". I air quote it because from what I understand from people who have been there much longer then me don't seem to think much of the guy.

So basically if the second channel is not a repeater then there is no reason to have listen two frequencies, or to have "stepped"them?
 

mmckenna

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That picture of the post it note was the information given to me by the "professional". I air quote it because from what I understand from people who have been there much longer then me don't seem to think much of the guy.

So basically if the second channel is not a repeater then there is no reason to have listen two frequencies, or to have "stepped"them?
Anyone can call themselves a "professional". Doesn't take much to buy programming software and cables and go into business for yourself.

I think this is what you need to do:

For the repeater channel, try setting the receive squelch type to "CSQ". This is standard carrier squelch. That will let you hear everything coming out of the repeater. I suspect if you are not hearing other users on the repeater, then it is because you have a tone squelch set and have the wrong tone, or they just don't use one. Leaving it set to CSQ will let you hear everything on that frequency, even if it's not coming from your repeater.

The "not on repeater" channel looks like a talk around channel. This would bypass the repeater in the event you were out of range or the repeater was not functioning.
For that one, you'll need to get some clarification, but likely you'll need to set the TX and RX frequency to 464.975. Set squelch to CSQ. The way it's set up now you probably are not going to hear anything. You'd need to have the PL/DPL setup to the same code for that to work. Since the post it didn't show a PL tone, I'd try leaving it off.

The radio guy could have made that post it a lot more clear. Maybe by not using a post it and using a piece of paper and writing it all out.

The other thing you need to check is to make sure your transmit deviation is set to 2.5KHz. That should be on the TX Options tab, if I recall correctly.
 

slicerwizard

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The antenna I have, doesn't say a particular frequency can you guys recommend a better one?
It's printed right on it that it's a UHF antenna. I suppose that doesn't mean anything to you.

And by the looks of it, you were transmitting on the repeater output frequency, so if another user was keying up, but was too far away for you to pick them up, you would walk over them without even realizing it. Some comms on ski hills are critical and there you were, potentially just blindly keying up over other users.
 

lucky43113

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It's printed right on it that it's a UHF antenna. I suppose that doesn't mean anything to you.

And by the looks of it, you were transmitting on the repeater output frequency, so if another user was keying up, but was too far away for you to pick them up, you would walk over them without even realizing it. Some comms on ski hills are critical and there you were, potentially just blindly keying up over other users.
OP is trying to figure things out go easy on him he was just asking questions no need to be a smart @$$ none of us know everything
 

Thinderik

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OP is trying to figure things out go easy on him he was just asking questions no need to be a smart @$$ none of us know everything
Thanks for the support =).

It's a small mountain. We are not encouraged to talk much either. So there is that. I appreciate the advice from everyone.

The antenna is indeed listed as UHF, but I was under the impression that certain antennas were better or geared more towards certain freq's.

I'll update this evening after work.
 

jim202

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Being new to the radio field without a mentor is tough. You have to learn it the hard way and take all the blows that some people will throw your way. We all have had to endure some of the abuse in our early days of our radio education.

On antennas, I will point out that there are basically two styles of any portable antenna. There is the short ones that are only a couple of inches long. As long as your just a short distance from the repeater, they will work so so. Then there is the long antennas that can be 6 to even 10 or more inches long. Many in the law enforcement field call them the arm pit tickler and don't care for them as a result. But they work and work well. If your in a fringe area out on the far reaches of the repeater coverage, you will be glad you have the full length antenna.

Some how in the early days of the FCC laying out frequencies, they managed to do the UHF band correctly and said that the UHF repeaters would always have the repeater output on the low frequency. That would mean that the input to the repeater that all the mobile and portable radios would transmit on would be the higher frequency. They did spell out that the 2 frequencies would have a 5 MHz. separation between them. So it was easy to know where the second frequency would be. In most cases you were only given the repeater output. The input would always be the 5 MHz. higher frequency.

The use of a PL tone provides some relief of having to listen to traffic on a congested frequency that was not on your repeater. If your in a location where there is little to no other repeaters on your frequency, then yes you could use carrier squelch on the receive side. but you would still need the PL tone on the transmit side so that your transmitter will key up the repeater.

Many repeater users put in a second channel into the user radios to allow for direct radio to radio communications in the event the repeater doesn't work, or your out of range of the repeater and you need to talk with someone close by. This second channel or "talk around" is normally on the repeater output frequency (the lower frequency). This way if your still in range of the repeater, you can monitor what is being said over the repeater.

Hope this helps in clearing up some of the confusion. Try to ignore some of the backlash a few on here are giving you as a person new to radios.
 
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Thunderknight

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I was able to transmit and have it be broadcast through my fellow patrollers radios, but I'm sure what that would really show or prove.
It's been kind of mentioned here, but in this case, that is because you were transmitting on the repeater output. So everyone's radios within range of your radio heard you as your transmit was the same as the repeater's.
However, YOUR transmissions did not have the advantage of the repeater. The other posters are correct, 99.99% of the situations, the repeater listens on 469, so you transmit on 469. The repeater transmits (so portables listen) on 464. It also means you wouldn't hear the repeater...any transmissions you did hear would be from the portable going towards the repeater (the input). Again, if you were too far from them, you wouldn't hear anything because you wouldn't hear them and you wouldn't have heard the repeater.

Sometimes systems will be configured so another channel is "talk around" meaning the portables will transmit and receive on 464 to use when the repeater is down or if there is no repeater in range. This is also called simplex. That might be what is indicated for ch2 on the note, but it's not clear. It's also not clear if they are using 464 or 469 for the simplex side.I don't know if the [ ] means "use this one" or "ignore this half of the pair".
 

adamr368

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Also, please note that in the second shot of the programming screen, you have two different PL tones programmed, Given such, I am going to assume that your concentric switch is setup for PL disable (monitor mode) which is why you were able to hear more comms when moving it to another position. The PL tones should match since they didn't specify a separate one for receive. You're almost there - good luck!


Happy NFL Play-off weekend! -There

I got this Motorola MTS2k I for Ski patrol this season. The guy the Moutain hires to do the programming said he couldn't do it, so I figured I'd give it a go (assuming I'd fail and have to sell it). Well, it actually friggen worked. Programmed it using my Vista laptop and a serial-usb cable. Something I thought that would be all but impossible from other postings I read.

So after it read the radio and I changed the settings and wrote them to the radio, I naturally assumed that I had done it wrong and when I got to the Mountain it would be a mess. But it seemed to work fine all last night. Except for a couple instances.

Now bear with me here, because for all intents and purposes and I a radio retard (excuse the term).

I was given a post it with the frequencies for the two channels that the mountain uses. Channel 1 is on a "repeater" which I have no idea what it is or if I had to click a box while programming the radio.

They listed a "Tone" of 203.5. I assumed that was the PL frequency since there was an option that matched.

**As I'm writing this I noticed on channel 2 that the PL freq on channel 2's receive portion is still at 156.7 So thats probably why I couldn't hear certain things last night from the Lift attendants.**

One point I moved the "Scan or Secure" selector under the channel selector and I could hear more of what was going on. Now that might have been coincidence, I'm not sure.

Last Question. The antenna I have, doesn't say a particular frequency can you guys recommend a better
one?

I appreciate your help and patience. If you want more pictures or anything just ask.

Derik
 

Thinderik

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WOW. I'm super appreciative of all the feed back. I think I'm getting the gist of what you all are telling me about the repeaters and how I was a dope with having the Freq's messed up on the Tx and Rx. I feel like a grade A jackass. Also glad I came on here and asked and that you have been so kind in pointing out my missteps. Otherwise I'd be a Grade A jackass more then just that 1 day.

I had noticed that the PL freq on one of the channels was messed up and fixed it to be the same as the others, as it was not intentionally different =(.

I was asking about the Antenna also because I thought perhaps that might have been the root of some of the issues I was having with hearing some of the talking. I would hear talking then it would cut out and my fellow patrollers next to me would be getting the full conversation. It could also be maybe the contacts on the Lapel mic need cleaning... or more then likely the Freq's being in the wrong spot.

Looking forward to getting out of work and "fixing" my mistakes. I'll post some pictures.
 

Thinderik

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So I changed the two Freq's like you all told me I should do.

I also changed the second channel so it receives and sends on the same freq and changed it so CSQ instead of PL.

I also changed the step from 5mhz to 2.5mhz. Still not exactly sure what that does lol.

I also put the second channel in a scan list and double checked the button assignment so I'll try scanning it lol. See what that does for me.

One of the side buttons is assigned to "Monitor" and I was wondering what that was all about.

Let me know if you guys think I should do anything else or need other pics ETC. Thanks for your help. When I go do patrol again Wednesday I'll ask the boss man some questions. I'm not sure how "in the know" he is about the radio situation. He seems like a pretty in the know guy, but who knows.
 

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yaknamedjak

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Without checking your numbers, looks to me like you got it straightened out.


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mmckenna

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So I changed the two Freq's like you all told me I should do.

I also changed the second channel so it receives and sends on the same freq and changed it so CSQ instead of PL.
OK, That should work for simplex (aka: talk around, as it allows you to "talk around" the repeater). With the receive squelch set to CSQ, you'll still hear the repeater output, so you'll have to pay attention to what's going on. If you accidentally put it on this channel, the radios in the immediate area will hear you on either the repeater channel or the talk around channel. They likely won't know which one. They may talk back to you on the repeater. That might create issues where other staff nearby will be able to hear you, but others won't.

I also changed the step from 5mhz to 2.5mhz. Still not exactly sure what that does lol.
OK, so it's actually 5KHz and 2.5KHz. That's the amount of space the transmitter uses. Back on January 01, 2013, the FCC required almost all users in the VHF High and UHF radio bands to switch to 2.5KHz channels. This was called "Narrow banding". What it does is makes the radio transmit in a narrower channel. Eventually this will allow them to squeeze more channels in between the existing ones. It's required by the FCC, your radio guy should have done it to all the radios and the repeater. If they didn't do it (and they should have) your radio traffic may sound quieter than everyone else's and their traffic may sound loud, even slightly distorted, on yours. If this happens, you're going to have some issues as it means the radio guy didn't do his job.

I also put the second channel in a scan list and double checked the button assignment so I'll try scanning it lol. See what that does for me.
It's not going to do much. The way the channels are set up, you're going to hear the same stuff on each channel. The only difference between the two channels is where you are transmitting. Channel one will transmit on the repeater input (469.xxxMHz), and channel 2 will transmit on the repeater output (464.xxxMHz). You probably won't want it set up this way for the long term, but it's a good exercise to learn how it works.
Usually in public safety type situations, the scan function can actually make your life really difficult. It's a good idea to use the scan function very carefully as it can cause you to miss important traffic.

One of the side buttons is assigned to "Monitor" and I was wondering what that was all about.

Let me know if you guys think I should do anything else or need other pics ETC. Thanks for your help. When I go do patrol again Wednesday I'll ask the boss man some questions. I'm not sure how "in the know" he is about the radio situation. He seems like a pretty in the know guy, but who knows.
You might want to try programming the FRS and GMRS channels in there as receive only. You might hear some interesting traffic from your customers on the ski slopes. I know people that use the cheap FRS/GMRS radios when they are skiing.
If you decide later, get your GMRS license and you can use your radio on the GMRS frequencies. Depending on where you are located, there may even be a GMRS repeater in your area.

If that is something that interests you, you could study for your amateur radio license. The radio you have should work on the 70 centimeter amateur radio band well. Back when I had one of these, and still had my GMRS license, I had all the GMRS channels programmed in, a few of the local GMRS repeaters I had access to in there, as well as a couple of amateur radio repeaters.

And/or, you could search the data base on this site and see if there are any interesting users on the UHF band in your area. You can program in their channels as __RECEIVE ONLY__ and use your radio like a scanner when you are not working.
 

mmckenna

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I'll add, you may want to print out your channel setup and show it to your radio guy. She/he should be able to tell you if it looks right.
 

Thinderik

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Thanks again =).

The boss man had mentioned "Narrowband" and so now the 2.5 thing makes sense. Thank you for the clarification.

I'm still not sure why, on the sticky note, he listed two freq's for that second Non-repeater channel. After talking to you guys it just seems silly.

If I program all the GMRS/FRS channels into the radio will I have to scan them to listen to them? I read that I can set priority so that I hear whats going on in Channel 1 with the important stuff, but could also hear the GMRS when there is nothing going on in CHannel 1. I ask this also because my kid and wife ski alot while I'm "working" at the mountain and it would be nice to hear a question or two from them while also listening for the stuff I'm getting paid for.

Thanks again for the knowledge. I feel I know just enough to be dangerous =(. So I'll make sure to keep asking questions to avoid that scenario.
 

KG4INW

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OK, That should work for simplex (aka: talk around, as it allows you to "talk around" the repeater). With the receive squelch set to CSQ, you'll still hear the repeater output, so you'll have to pay attention to what's going on. If you accidentally put it on this channel, the radios in the immediate area will hear you on either the repeater channel or the talk around channel. They likely won't know which one. They may talk back to you on the repeater. That might create issues where other staff nearby will be able to hear you, but others won't.
Unless if I missed something, Ch 2 is 100 kHz different than the repeater output so it's a simplex channel and not a true talk around. If everyone else is set up with any kind of PL or DPL, they won't hear him with carrier squelch.
 
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