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MuddyPaws
July 25th, 2006, 03:17 AM
Yup, here we go again. Ok, what do I actually NEED. What I mean is, would a cheaper, 5 watt or whatever, handheld be OK?

What are the features I really HAVE to have? Not the nice things...the important things.

I don't know how much I will use this thing and i'm not going to sink a huge ton of money into one right off the bat.

I keep hearing FM and UHF...we talking about the same thing? How do I know it's a HAM and not a "professional walkie talkie"?

kb8ymf
July 25th, 2006, 09:20 AM
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(MuddyPaws &#064; Jul 25 2006, 03&#58;17 AM) 16089</div>

Yup, here we go again. Ok, what do I actually NEED. What I mean is, would a cheaper, 5 watt or whatever, handheld be OK?

What are the features I really HAVE to have? Not the nice things...the important things.

I don&#39;t know how much I will use this thing and i&#39;m not going to sink a huge ton of money into one right off the bat.

I keep hearing FM and UHF...we talking about the same thing? How do I know it&#39;s a HAM and not a "professional walkie talkie"?
[/b]

Good question&#39;s Tim.
Needs: radio that will be able to &#39;get out&#39;. Stay away from HT or Handi-talkies as their called. The are 5 to 7 watts and have no place in what I believe are the needs of our group. Only exception is like you and I walked that trail last year. The guys had the squelch up so hi that they could not hear us. I could have used a HT and we could have walked for a few miles and still would have been able to communicate with the group back at the main trail. FM Ham radios don&#39;t have that problem, I&#39;ll explain later. You will need a mobile rig.

A good had radio will cost you no more that a good Cobra CB radio. Plan on &#036;150 for a good 50 to 65 watt 2 meter radio and another &#036;60 or so for a good antenna. The antenna is the heart of the system so don&#39;t skimp here/ It makes all the difference in the world.

Ham IS FM, and is on the VHF region of the radio spectrum. 2 meter ham has permission from the Federal Govt to use the frequency between 144.00 to 148.00 mHz. UHF is another region of spectrum. Ham radio also has permission there from 420.00 to 450.00 mHz. It&#39;s also called the 70 Centimeter Band or 440 sometimes. FRS is also UHF and is in the 462.55 to 467.725 range which you can see is outside the Amatuer Band frequencies. Same goes with &#39;professional&#39; walkie talkies....stay away. Most likely in the 155.00 (VHF) region where most public service radi used to be before all heading off to 800 mHz trunked systems.

How do you know it&#39;s HAM. It will be advertised as Amatuer Radio equipment, anything else is just cast offs from departments who have updated their equipment, stay away from that crap&#33;

From a clarity standpoint, FM is SO..................much better. CB is AM like your car radio. When&#39;s the last time you listened to an AM station. You most likely don&#39;t &#39;cause it&#39;s crappy reception and all staticy. FM on the other hand is VERY clear. Same goes for 2 meter Ham radio which is FM. It&#39;s hard to explain but squelch tuning is different in FM in that once you squelch out the static, you will hear virtually everyone else within the communication range that you would be capable of hearing without &#39;listening through the static&#39;. You can &#39;open the squelch&#39; and hear more but for the communication we&#39;ll be doing, having your squelch &#39;to tight&#39; is a thing of the past.

I owe Jim K, Kim K, Pat and other some suggestions on radios...I&#39;ll get that this afternoon and post it here.

Ari, and Brian and others.....suggestions for radios for these guys?
jim-kb8ymf

Bult4mud
July 25th, 2006, 11:28 AM
Im leaning tward the ICOM I520 as reccomended by MR mazzola

kb8ymf
July 25th, 2006, 12:52 PM
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Bult4mud &#064; Jul 25 2006, 11&#58;28 AM) 16098</div>

Im leaning tward the ICOM I520 as reccomended by MR mazzola
[/b]
You mean 2200???
See my comments below
j-kb8ymf

kb8ymf
July 25th, 2006, 01:16 PM
Here&#39;s my no excuses set-up for single band no frills, get the job done radio.

Radio: 3 choices in order of preferences
Icom V8000 75 Watts, Mil-Spec &#036;209
Kenwood TM-271 60 Watts Mil-Spec &#036;169
Icom 2200 65 Watts NOT mil-spec &#036;179

Two thoughts on this, If you have an open top vehicle you should consider the Mil-Spec radios. The contra to that is I&#39;ve had non Mil-Spec radios in my vehicle without to much trouble but I&#39;m basically and A/C kinda guy&#33; I&#39;ve had Kenwoods all my life with only minor repairs required but am leaning toward the Icom V8000 as my next radio if I get a single band. I will have a dual band Kenwood in truck for other reasons, like I&#39;ve already got it&#33;
The only other option that might benefit us in the radio options standpoint is detachable faceplates. These allow you to only have to mount the faceplate on the dash (2" X 3" in some cases) and then mount the main radio under the seat or out of the way under the dash. The drawback is most of these radios are dual band and come with a sticker price of 2 to 2 1/2 greater that the radios mentioned above.

Antenna: 2 choices. Only Diamond products. Best quality construction.
SG2000HD UHF base 5.2 dB gain 62" long. &#036;89 If you can tolerate the length this is a gang buster of an antenna. But it almost 2 feet longer.
SG7500A UHF base. 3.5 dB gain (2 meter) /6.0 dB gain (70 CM band) 41" long &#036;79 (Dual Band Antenna) I have 5 of these antennas.
Stay away from antenna with curly cues in the mast. They tend to grab trees as ferociously as dogs do&#33;

dB is effectively how much the antenna will amplify the signal from the radio. All things being equal, Identical radios with different antennas, the higher dB gain antenna will transmit farther and recieve better than the one with less gain.

Lastly which I forgot to mention you&#39;ll need a mount for the antenna.

I prefer Diamond again for their high quality
Either K400S or the K412S depending on your application. Includes a short length of coax to get through door jambs instead of the bulky RG59 typically used on CB&#39;s

For pictures and ordering go to either:
http://www.aesham.com
http://www.hamradio.com

As far as mounting antennas, DO NOT mount them alongside the body of the vehicle. The bodywork effectively cancels out the signal leaving you with nothing more than a high priced CB&#33;

Ari and Brian, and others who have experiences. If you can add your preferences, your choices and why you made those, please do.

Jim-kb8ymf

MuddyPaws
July 27th, 2006, 02:12 PM
I leaning toward cheap.... :rolf:

ebay here I come.

DDS4X4
July 30th, 2006, 10:42 PM
My test is scheduled for Saturday, August 12, in my old home town.
Now to review the book and on-line.

Then I&#39;ll need one of these too&#33;

See ya at DOA&#33;

Zookeeper
July 31st, 2006, 01:57 PM
I&#39;ve been really happy with my Kenwood G707-A. I liked that it has a detachable faceplate that can be remote mounted. In the Wrangler, that means I can tuck the radio away and have just the face plate on the dash. Then, when I&#39;m parked somewhere, I can get rid of the faceplate as well. I also like that it has a good fan and a huge heatsink on the radio, so it handles heat very well. It appears Kenwood is doing away with this particular model, although it has a long reputation of good reviews. Because of its "closeout" status at many retailers, it is possible you could pick up this dual-bander (2 meters/70 cm) for a really good price when compared with a standard 2 meter radio. It will transmit at 5, 10 and 50 watts, too.

GerkTJ
July 31st, 2006, 10:09 PM
ok, you have my interest. How indepth is the test and what does it cost?

Zookeeper
July 31st, 2006, 11:10 PM
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(GerkTJ &#064; Jul 31 2006, 06&#58;09 PM) 16245</div>

ok, you have my interest. How indepth is the test and what does it cost?
[/b]

Get the book, "Now You&#39;re Talking" for &#036;20 and commit to studying it every day a little bit for about a month, then drop your &#036;30 or so for the test and take it before the stuff at the beginning of the book starts to fade from memory. LOL

It&#39;s not that hard, especially if you take the time to study regularly. I found the practice tests to be really helpful for studying the trickier stuff and a nice pick-me-up for the easier stuff when I ended up getting all the answers right.

And when you take the test, you only have to score about a 75% and you pass. :D

I followed this method and was able to pass with only two wrong answers, and one of them I had right and changed&#33; (Always, always, always go with your initial gut instinct&#33; angry )

~ Ari - KD8CXP

kb8ymf
August 1st, 2006, 08:11 AM
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Zookeeper &#064; Jul 31 2006, 11&#58;10 PM) 16255</div>

then drop your &#036;30 or so for the test
~ Ari - KD8CXP
[/b]

Was it really that much????? I remember it being &#036;6.00.....add a few yeas for inflation...so &#036;10.00 would be my top guess. I&#39;ll ask the Examiners in my club how much they charge and if something has changed. Even still &#036;30.00 for a 10 year license from the government is DAM CHEEP&#33;
jim-kb8ymf

Creative Fab
August 1st, 2006, 08:18 AM
When Kim and I took our test a few weeks back it was &#036;14 each.

Bult4mud
August 1st, 2006, 09:25 AM
how do you mount two antennas

IE Cb and Ham
do they interfear with eachother i feel that most of us will prolly still run both

Brian
August 1st, 2006, 04:27 PM
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Bult4mud &#064; Aug 1 2006, 09&#58;25 AM) 16275</div>

how do you mount two antennas

IE Cb and Ham
do they interfear with eachother i feel that most of us will prolly still run both
[/b]

Keep them atleast three feet apart if possible.

brewmenn
August 3rd, 2006, 12:33 AM
Any advise on the best way to mount the antenna on a TJ? I have my CB antenna (5 foot) mounted on the rear bumper but it does put it along side the body for the first foot or 2.

kb8ymf
August 3rd, 2006, 07:42 AM
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(brewmenn &#064; Aug 3 2006, 12&#58;33 AM) 16367</div>

Any advise on the best way to mount the antenna on a TJ? I have my CB antenna (5 foot) mounted on the rear bumper but it does put it along side the body for the first foot or 2.
[/b]

My rule of thumb, 1 foot up the antenna at least 1 foot from the body sheetmetal. Never any closer. Glass bodies may be able to get by with less. Also, the higher you can expose the antenna over the roof of the vehicle the better.
Separate CB and Ham by about two feet if possible. Don&#39;t run coax&#39;s next to each other if possible. If you do, just don&#39;t tie them together, leave them loose.
j-kb8ymf

GerkTJ
August 3rd, 2006, 09:43 AM
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(kb8ymf &#064; Aug 3 2006, 03&#58;42 AM) 16372</div>

<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(brewmenn &#064; Aug 3 2006, 12&#58;33 AM) 16367

Any advise on the best way to mount the antenna on a TJ? I have my CB antenna (5 foot) mounted on the rear bumper but it does put it along side the body for the first foot or 2.
[/b]

My rule of thumb, 1 foot up the antenna at least 1 foot from the body sheetmetal. Never any closer. Glass bodies may be able to get by with less. Also, the higher you can expose the antenna over the roof of the vehicle the better.
Separate CB and Ham by about two feet if possible. Don&#39;t run coax&#39;s next to each other if possible. If you do, just don&#39;t tie them together, leave them loose.
j-kb8ymf
[/b][/quote]


Ok, so I ordered the book and will have to try to remember how to study from school&#33; I&#39;m still confused about where you would mt the antenna on a TJ without it be close to the body panels? :unsure:

kb8ymf
August 3rd, 2006, 11:07 AM
I&#39;ve had mine up on the front &#39;A&#39; pillar with good success. Other than whacking trees pretty hard. Once in a while I have to fold it over. Good quality antenna&#39;s like Diamond are capable of folding over. Albiet you have to go out and lift them up 3/8" and fold them over. They are equipped with a internal spring loaded base. The other choice which I&#39;m going to try on the new truck is off the rear tailgate. Same sort of spot on the Jeeps. On the hinged portion of the spare tire holder would be good to start fabbing a mount to. You should be able to pass the 1 foot X 1 foot rule I mentioned earlier. Even more so due to the glass top on Jeeps. Less RFI than with steel tops
j-kb8ymf

Zookeeper
August 3rd, 2006, 11:17 AM
I have my Diamond antenna mounted on the cross bars of my winch. It&#39;s away from the body, it&#39;s easily visible so I can actually maneuver it around tree branches if need be and it&#39;s served me very well in terms of transmission and reception. I wasn&#39;t sure when I first mounted it there if I&#39;d like it, but now I&#39;m used to it and it seems to do well there. Plus, you can buy a winch now and say you had to have it as a mount for your antenna&#33; :D