Trouble In Amateur Radio Paradise

TomLine

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Jul 22, 2019
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45
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Hamilton, Ohio
Could one look at the issue as a lack of non-licensed band for use that actually works better than FRS. Seriously, if some guys wanted to go hunting once a year where radios would be good to have for safety reasons, or do more than talk across the street, FRS is just a toy.
 

rescuecomm

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Jun 20, 2005
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Travelers Rest, SC
Most of the hunters using HT radios seem to have VHF marine equipment. Or so I was told by a couple of guys camping near me during bear season.
 

vagrant

ker-muhj-uhn
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Nov 19, 2005
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2,188
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California
Could one look at the issue as a lack of non-licensed band for use that actually works better than FRS. Seriously, if some guys wanted to go hunting once a year where radios would be good to have for safety reasons, or do more than talk across the street, FRS is just a toy.
1. Amateurs use the UHF band as well which is around 15MHz lower from FRS/GMRS frequencies. I am not aware of the amateur frequencies working better.
2. No testing is required to use GMRS, just obtain an FRN, apply for GMRS and pay the money. Usually within 24 hours the licensed is approved. A GMRS license provides one to use more watts on certain frequencies, a repeater as well as a detachable/improved antenna.
3. MURS is VHF and although limited to lower power has different characteristics. MURS radios can also use external/improved antennas.
4. Citizens Band radio uses a lower frequency and provides different characteristics.

A licensed is required, or the frequencies are licensed by rule. I am not aware of a non-licensed band, but I get your point. Also, although a license is required for amateur assigned frequencies, everyone is welcome to take the easy test and then use radios that allow higher watts...and the many repeaters amateurs have put into place that do not require fees from fellow operators. Yes, that's right, get an amateur license and significantly extend the range of a low power handheld radio. Honestly, if an adult using a firearm is unable to pass the technician test they are a liability more than an asset to the hobby as well as themselves and others. Still, they have the GMRS option of not taking a test, or CB, or MURS.

* As to hunters using VHF marine equipment, yeah I hear them. Still, I know some guys that previously did that. A hint of information and they obtained their amateur licenses and even GMRS licenses. They also still enjoy using the CB. What they no longer do is use marine frequencies.
 

mmckenna

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Jul 27, 2005
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From the land of sky blue waters!
Consumers want cheap/easy.
Cabella's was selling VHF marine radios right along with their hunting gear with no mention of the FCC rules.

Consumers also get easily swayed by the wattage numbers. The ASSumption that going from 2 watt MRS to a 5 watt VHF Marine radio is going to vastly increase their range is hard to erase from their minds. There are still those that will claim "1 mile per watt" or something equally stupid.

There's lots of legal options out there, but people don't seem to want to engage the brain cells to understand it. It's just easier to click the button on the Amazon app and then claim ignorance.
 

rescuecomm

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Jun 20, 2005
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1,102
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Travelers Rest, SC
Quite a few states don't require a firearms safety class to get a hunting license. GMRS radio and hunting licenses are a few of the pay up and you are good to go things left. Looking at the yearly highway carnage, passing a test doesn't necessarily help a lot.
 

K6GBW

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May 29, 2016
Messages
93
Location
Montebello, CA
The price we pay for having public airwaves and internet access to equipment is the occasional interloper or nutball. I spend most of my time on HF and I've noticed the degredation on HF as well. 80 meters is slowly turning in a CB with no call signs, jamming, foul language. Now the morning net I do everyday on 40 meters has had a guy blowing into the microphone and banging it on a desk. He shows up about every three days. I keep hoping he'll get bored and move along but so far no luck. We'll never catch him and he know it. Even if we did, the FCC is useless. So I guess we just have to accept it and move along.
 
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