Frequency agility - Suggestions?

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Frequency agility - Suggestions?

Postby Jack » Mon Jul 28, 2003 9:31 am

Hey guys, I have a quick question. I am a volunteer for a rescue squad here in North Carolina. We do canine search and rescue for cadaver and live find in wilderness, collapsed structure etc. We're also getting into swift water here pretty soon.

One of the major problems we've had when travelling to incidents across the state is radio communications. We have GM300's, Syntors etc, but the problem is that we really need something that is programmable on the fly without having to attach a computer all the time. The Syntors are of course especially slow to program It makes for a real pain. We have JT1000's for handhelds, so that's not an issue.

I guess what I'm looking for is a mobile rig that's type accepted, and has the ability to be programmed on the fly. Is there such a beast? Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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Postby Radio_Cowboy » Mon Jul 28, 2003 12:51 pm

One of the older Bendix/King mobile radios is programable via the front, with a mod to the mic, I believe....and another good ole standby radio is the Regency/wilson/Relm RH-256 series. The old slant face radios that every police/fire department has had some of over the years. They can be had pretty cheap, and are either 10 or 16 channels. They come in both VHF (25 watt) and UHF (15 watt) versions. I've had several over the years, and they are good if you need programability. You connect a jumper on the board, or what most people do is put a toggle switch on the back of the radio...if you need to reprogram, flip the toggle switch...do your programming, and flip the switch back.


Here is one on ebay..
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... tegory=296[url]



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Program on the fly

Postby Doug » Mon Jul 28, 2003 1:31 pm

Good Day Jack,
Some of the older versions in the Kenwood series can also be programed with a couple of front button pushes and a mod on the inside. The TK805 seems to ring a bell with me for UHF and I believe the TK705 was its VHF counterpart.
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Postby RadioSouth » Mon Jul 28, 2003 1:48 pm

Also the Icom U-400 and V-100 are programmable via a plug in programming pad (Ex-494?) and are type accepted. Used these quite a bit before the 'M' bug bit.
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Postby mancow » Mon Jul 28, 2003 7:03 pm

Well, there's only 2 hours left, and damn, if I had the money I'd get it.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... tegory=296



It's the Bendix/King EMH series. The auction says it's 35 watts but unless it's a different version I believe he's wrong. All that I've seen are 50 watts.

The EMH can hadle up to 210 channels or so, has alpha numerics, programmable buttons, and is (field programmable). To do so you have to buy what is called a SMART MIC.

The radios can be set up with zones of varying sizes. We've used them here for years and they are super reliable. I plan on getting a couple vhf, uhf and replacing the spectras some day :o


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SAR

Postby Cowthief » Mon Jul 28, 2003 8:36 pm

Hello.

The policy on type accepted/type approved is of limited issue with me.
You are only 100% legal if you are part of that station licensees "net".
In an emergency, you can use any radio, on just about any channel.
The FCC is not the problem, it is whatever agency you call that is the problem.
Famous recording, played on Howard Sterno show, of the secret service being told they could not be on this channel, for police use only, you are just there to protect the presidents daughter.
I do not agree with most of what he plays, but that is a riot!.
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Re: SAR

Postby Jack » Tue Jul 29, 2003 3:45 am

Cowthief wrote:Hello.

The policy on type accepted/type approved is of limited issue with me.
You are only 100% legal if you are part of that station licensees "net".
In an emergency, you can use any radio, on just about any channel.
The FCC is not the problem, it is whatever agency you call that is the problem.
Famous recording, played on Howard Sterno show, of the secret service being told they could not be on this channel, for police use only, you are just there to protect the presidents daughter.
I do not agree with most of what he plays, but that is a riot!.


We operate only with agencies in which we have mutual aid agreements. All of that's been covered, but thanks anyway.
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Postby mastr » Tue Jul 29, 2003 4:08 am

Bear in mind that the type acceptance of the Regency/ Wilson/ Kenwood mentioned goes away once it is "modified". If type acceptance is an important criteria, my opinion is that the unit should be field programmable without internal non-factory modification. Does the Bendix radio need a mod for the keypad mic?
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Postby mancow » Tue Jul 29, 2003 4:32 am

No, I don't believe it does. Also they make the older LMH3142 that needs two pins jumpered in the mic connector to be face programmable. I think that's how they get around the ignorant restrictions.


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Postby kmoose » Tue Jul 29, 2003 6:40 am

Jack,

The Bendix/king GMH Series (see pic in previous post above) is field programmble. However, you have to buy the keypad microphone with it. The keypad microphone is B/K p/n: LAA0290. I would caution you that programming the radio requires that you have your eyes on the radio. So you might want to take into account whether or not you have someone else in thevehicle that can program, while you watch the road, or whether you can pull over to program. The VHF version of the GMH is the GMH5992X. 210 channel, programmable power to about 50 watts. Good radios, from what I have seen. We own about 25 or so, and I have had very few complaints about them.
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Kenwood Commercial Programming Yes

Postby Susan157 » Tue Jul 29, 2003 7:22 am

:wink:

two small kenwood radio that we have worked with
are the Kenwood TK705 (Vhf) TK805 (Uhf)
They are 16 channel units with ctcss
705D is both ctcss and dcs.

We install a spring return single pole
double throw switch on the radio.In
Normal mode the radio works.In the
spring position we are in programming
mode and the radio frequency is
programmed on the front of the radio.

We have looked at many SAR units
That can set up on the FLY.
Here in Canada WE LIke To Have
Commercial Gear Programmed on The
Go. Ham Is Great In An Emergency but
The "Rules Apply"
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Postby DAL-COM » Tue Jul 29, 2003 9:53 am

If you can qualify for a GSA purchase, consider the Vertex VX4000 in the Forest Service version. It is fully front programmable, 128 channels.
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Postby Jack » Tue Jul 29, 2003 12:41 pm

Thanks for all the info, guys. I'm going to meet with a guy this weekend who may have some kenwood gear and I'll let you know how it goes. I'm also going to do some research on the other ones you guys mentioned. Thanks again. More information than I could ever ask for!
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GSA schedule D

Postby Cowthief » Tue Jul 29, 2003 12:54 pm

Hello.

All GSA schedule D radios are part 90 exempt, they are not FCC type approved or accepted, save for part 15.
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Postby Al » Tue Jul 29, 2003 2:48 pm

Since FCC type acceptance and user-programmability are mutually exclusive, what's wrong with doing what you want the old-fashioned way: Get type accepted portables or mobiles having channel capacity exceeding what you now need, program them once for the various agencies' frequencies you need, and be done with it.
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Postby Jack » Tue Jul 29, 2003 7:23 pm

Mainly because we respond in NC, SC, VA and TN. I can't imagine trying to program all of our radios to work with the agencies that we respond with. It would be a nightmare. Programming on the fly is the only way to go in our situation, not unless someone has a 400 channel radio they can sell me.
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Postby kmoose » Wed Jul 30, 2003 5:40 am

Not to mention that, in that area of the country, you never know when the local sheriff might could want you to contract his brother-in-law Bubba. And Bubba might have a non government agency frequency that he uses, regardless of what them Yankee govmint boys say about licensing. No offense intended, to those who live in the Southeast. I spent two very enjoyable years working in and around Hickory, NC.
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Postby Jack » Wed Jul 30, 2003 5:44 am

For those of you who were helpful, I appreciate it. Otherwise, I think this thread has run its course. :roll:
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Postby mancow » Wed Jul 30, 2003 6:29 pm

People laugh about agencies programming in oddball unlicenced stuff but it has a purpose, legal or not. I for one would not take down a meth lab after doing surveillance on a published freq. Of course there is encryption but the reality is that many agencies just can't afford anything decent. I went to the academy with guys from Western Kansas that were making $7.00 an hour. For them it was just the Sheriff, Undersheriff, and a deputy or two.

A little common sense goes a long way.

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