Need help and info

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Premium Subscriber
Jun 3, 2008
Hurricane season is here, and I wanted to purchase a scanner a handheld model# BC246T.

First is it a good scanner?

I'll mostly be using it to monitor my local police freq. in my area. I figure if my area loses power I'll be able to monitor what's going on in my area as far as reports of looting or burglaries, that sort of stuff just to be aware and prepared for bad guys prowling the neighborhood.

A scanner is the one thing I lack as part of my emergency prep kit.

I remember hurricane Andrew and what when on in those days and it was not a secure feeling not knowing and hearing sirens and shots being fired in the distance.

Now here is my question, how do I download all of those available freq's that I see listed in for my area and linked below.

Does it pay to buy a BC246T pre-programmed, or does one save money by purchasing the software and downloading the freq's themselves?

Like I said I haven't a clue where to begin, I need help.


Feed Provider
Dec 19, 2002
Findlay Ohio
That scanner will work just fine for what you want it to do. As far as loading it, become a member of this site and buy ARC246 from Butel ARC246 will let you download the freq from the database here directly into the software. After that, you can load it into the scanner.


Wiki Admin Emeritus
Jul 22, 2002
Bowie, Md.
jj there's lots of sources for help. Before I begin, anything in blue or underlined is a link, both here and on our on-site wiki...

Since you are new, the concept of trunking may be new to you. We have a wiki article which should get your feet wet - read the overview section (there are a couple of links there which you will find useful) in:

Now, as to the 246, see this article;

In the related pages section, there are several links which might prove useful. Among these is a replacement for the Uniden manual, which most think was poorly written (I have the 396, and yes, I think the manual is rather poor there, too...) referred to as the 'Easier to Read' series.

There are also 2 freeware packages that, when you get a premium subscription, will allow you to download data from our database here into the software editor. These are BcTool (get the latest beta from the Yahoo group, not the website) and FreeScan.

There are other sources for data files as well. You will find many references to UASD files - this is an abbreviation for the Uniden Advanced System Director software, which many people start with for programming. ARC246, BcTool and FreeScan can all use files generated by this program as a data source. You may find .usd (the file extension UASD uses) files for your area in the site, the 246 Yahoo group (links for both are in the wiki), or in the SE Florida Yahoo group that covers Dade county...

Finally, jump down to the Florida forum, tell folks you have a 246 and are looking for data files. Make sure you tell them for what software, or better, mention that you are looking for .usd files. I have no doubt you will get more than one response....73 Mike
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