Author Topic: SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...  (Read 642 times)

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Offline roamer_1

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SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...
« on: March 28, 2020, 10:16:02 PM »
~Vanity~

As the title suggests, and as the current conditions remind me, I am looking to invest in comms this year... And I am completely baffled by the options.

I am not without experience in this, Having had some training by an old Elmer in short wave, and having been a serious bucketmouth back in the day, when CB was a thing. My best rig was a Midland made Sidebander, with a Siltronix Model90 VFO, and a couple bilinear amps co-phased... It's been a while, but I got some credz...

Now comes the problem. No doubt I intend to go full on HAM at base. That is the end game. But I also need to consider mobile and portables, hoping in the end to have reasonable compatibility across them all.

And a point to consider: I am not as interested in line-of-site power. According to my terrain (high mountains), I need bounce more than power. And therein lies the question.

I have already eliminated FRS radios... Line of site, low watt, UHF (no bounce)

GMRS might be a thing... Again, worried about bounce as they are UHF... I don't know. They DO come in both mobile (vehicle mounted) and portable. The portables are 5w or so, which is not great, but I suppose fair talking to a mobile in a pickup at camp somewhere near... say 2-5 miles maybe in rough terrain??? How are they portable to portable? Can they be jacked up? Can the mobile be bi-lin amped? can they carry a low freq crystal (talk to CB)?

FM might be a thing... Handy-talkies.... But they are not much around here unless you can tie to a repeater. I am likely to have this as an option, base, mobile and portable, as with the ability to use a repeater system (which ability I do have), there is really nothing more effective here in the mountains. But I am worried wrt the reliance on the repeaters in a SHTF event. Even in emergencies, as those repeaters are shared, and often commandeered for official use in such scenarios, and as I said, bumped off the repeaters, these are near useless.

CB is my goto. I know it already... Comparatively low frequency has a tendency to bounce around objects - not great, but better... I know I can jack up a sidebander to get serious emergency power to talk out of the woods, and skip has already saved me from a breakdown, talking to a guy in FL that relayed info to folks here by landline.

But while CBs are available, it is a passing technology. Maybe I am just stuck in the past and in what I know.

Lastly, Back to HAM. Ultimately, I know that is where I am going at base, along with whatever else, for the LDX - Communications with other parts of the country are necessary, and maybe even a trade stock... While I am sure mobile HAM is doable, I am less sure of its efficacy, and even less sure of portable units.

So any input from all y'all would be very helpful getting me on the right track here... I have limited funds, and committing to the wrong systems would be a hard failure to recover from, especially if the fail is not evident until in the midst of apocalypse.

TYIA.

Online Bigun

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Re: SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2020, 10:59:11 PM »
@roamer_1

There are a few radios out there that will do it all (We HAMS refer to them as "a shack in a box") This is the best of the lot IMHO.



https://www.gigaparts.com/yaesu-ft-991a.html?msclkid=081ee0709eba1babbdc7bef090a0846c&utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=*Yaesu%20-%20JumpFly&utm_term=yaesu%20ft-991%20a&utm_content=FT-991A

Offline Smokin Joe

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Re: SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2020, 11:19:18 PM »
I have GMRS, bought them to use on wellsite, but...Not supposed to use them north of 48 degrees latitude b/c Canadians were using those freqs for emergency responses. :shrug:
How God must weep at humans' folly! Stand fast! God knows what he is doing!
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Offline Free Vulcan

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Re: SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...
« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2020, 12:20:00 AM »
Bookmark.
The Conservative Fist: https://twitter.com/arguedpolitics - follow me and I'll follow you.

Offline roamer_1

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Re: SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...
« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2020, 01:41:25 AM »
@roamer_1

There are a few radios out there that will do it all (We HAMS refer to them as "a shack in a box") This is the best of the lot IMHO.


Well, @Bigun , That right there is a name I respect... Still looking for a virgin 101E, which is my unicorn... Actually settled for a 101EE, but the PTB in radio land saw fit to punish me for it... 300 bucks in, and turns out it is neither virgin nor repairable :(  Serves me right. Shouldn't have settled in the first place.

As to that which you are showing me... It's all greek - Looks like I have a long way to go to re-up my credz.   :beer:

Offline roamer_1

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Re: SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...
« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2020, 01:47:46 AM »
I have GMRS, bought them to use on wellsite, but...Not supposed to use them north of 48 degrees latitude b/c Canadians were using those freqs for emergency responses. :shrug:

So what do you think of em @Smokin Joe ? How far do they reach? I hear tell around here they are really line-of-site... That even in thick woods they go way down in distance... And get up and around the shoulder of a mountain - Forget about it..

That's my main worry. I know what a 2w or 5w CB walkie-talkie will do, and I know they do alright in woods, and fair around a corner... But these new-fangled ones, I have no idea.

Also would like to know how the mobile units do against a mobile CB...

Thanks for the heads up on 48 lat - That may just nix em anyway.

« Last Edit: March 29, 2020, 01:54:03 AM by roamer_1 »

Online Bigun

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Re: SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2020, 10:01:46 AM »
Well, @Bigun , That right there is a name I respect... Still looking for a virgin 101E, which is my unicorn... Actually settled for a 101EE, but the PTB in radio land saw fit to punish me for it... 300 bucks in, and turns out it is neither virgin nor repairable :(  Serves me right. Shouldn't have settled in the first place.

As to that which you are showing me... It's all greek - Looks like I have a long way to go to re-up my credz.   :beer:

@roamer_1

That radio will do all modes (CW, SSB, AM 100 Watts out on 160 meters up to 2 Meters I think it's like 60 watts on 70 CM)  PLUS all the digital modes.  You can't go wrong with something like that.  Thinking about getting one myself although I already have a FT 1000MP.

Check with the local HAMS up there. I'll bet there is a repeater on top of a mountain somewhere close that would allow you to cover the entire state with a line of sight radio.

https://repeaterbook.com/repeaters/Display_SS.php?state_id=30&loc=%25&call=%25&use=%25
« Last Edit: March 29, 2020, 10:05:14 AM by Bigun »

Offline Smokin Joe

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Re: SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...
« Reply #7 on: March 29, 2020, 04:28:19 PM »
So what do you think of em @Smokin Joe ? How far do they reach? I hear tell around here they are really line-of-site... That even in thick woods they go way down in distance... And get up and around the shoulder of a mountain - Forget about it..

That's my main worry. I know what a 2w or 5w CB walkie-talkie will do, and I know they do alright in woods, and fair around a corner... But these new-fangled ones, I have no idea.

Also would like to know how the mobile units do against a mobile CB...

Thanks for the heads up on 48 lat - That may just nix em anyway.
Range isn't subject to the issues here you have, what with North Dakota's mountain removal project pretty much complete, and our heavily forested plains (about ten trees/section) don't provide much signal attenuation. I have only used them for short distance comms, under a mile, so I can't really compare them to CB. The last CB I had would reach out about 3 miles (mobile, old, and cheap, with a bumper mount whip antenna long enough to affect my gas mileage). The only areas I might see problems are in and out of the breaks (badlands terrain), and I haven't tried them out there.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2020, 04:29:10 PM by Smokin Joe »
How God must weep at humans' folly! Stand fast! God knows what he is doing!
Seventeen Techniques for Truth Suppression


There are no "Socialists", no "Progressives", only Communists, with every negative image that totalitarianism might muster, demanding fealty and conformity to their views, with a legacy of 150,000,000 dead and counting.

Offline roamer_1

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Re: SHTF/Survival... Alright you 2-Way Radio Freaks...
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2020, 03:26:05 AM »
Talk over in the lounge reminded me of this thread, and I thought I would wake it back up to record my conclusion...

I already have an old refurbed Cobra Cam 40ch sidebander base sitting here ready to go in... Also found a Pierce Simpson Simba, which I would prefer, but probably won't use without a VFO (23 ch). That one came with a 100w amp, which I will have inline if needed. It will be so very nice to have my old Turner Super Sidekick mike back on the desk. Looking forward to it.

Working on upgrading the truck to sideband - It always had a Sears Roadtalker AM CB for it...
Gonna keep CB around for local gab and trucking coming out of the woods, and incidental compatibility with walkies.

But the main thing is VHF...
Investing in VHF handhelds. Found out one of my old buddies runs the local radio shop, so I went and set down with him to figure it out. He has handheld 50w VHF radios - that's 50w off repeater... It has significantly less wattage if it finds a repeater. But 50w hand to hand, or hand to mobile is about bombproof in the sticks.  No good over a range still, but more than enough poop to talk around corners and through thick brush.

But on-repeater is where it is at. Evidently, old logging repeater sites are donated to the local public use, so free-of-charge, with a HAM license, I can join the fun... All I have to do is help with maintenance and new installations... So a little money now and then, and  little elbow grease fixin on things now and then... And voluntary (but necessary, expected) participation in times of emergency, which is fine with me...

But it is free, ad-hoc, and liberty driven. It does not have any obligation toward emergency services and is not taken over during emergencies... And I know a lot of the guys that are on it.

So I can get at that for general use, and can access logging, and emergency systems from it. And with nothing but a handheld I can talk from Missoula to Eureka, and on over nearly to Coeur d'Alene.

So handhelds for now, a mobile later in my truck for better range accessing the repeater... And HAM down the road a ways, once I recover from the rest.

Thanks a bunch for your input gents, and especially to @Bigun , who was right on the money.
 :beer:
« Last Edit: June 16, 2020, 03:54:36 AM by roamer_1 »


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