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  1. #11
    Straight @ "T" w1jim's Avatar
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    While cross band repeat is good to have in reality I've only used it twice when I ran the finish on Concord Pond.
    Communications from the start to finish has always been erratic there so I used to place a car with a Yaesu FT-8800R under the power lines about a mile from the finish and then link with an HT.
    Later we found that it was easier to just erect a mast with a yagi pointed to the start.

    FYI - crossband repeat is where you have a better situated radio receive on 440 while simultaneously transmitiing on 2 meters. You transmit to it on 440. When receiving the better situated radio retransmits the 2 meter signal on 440 for you to receive.

    Field programming? At every event I have several people come to me to program their (Yaesu) radios.
    Frequencies and PL tones for repeaters - that's pretty much what I need to do for them.

    Thank you for volunteering.
    JimB
    I don't care where you live - it's a long walk home.

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  3. #12
    your other left, you idiot
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    Multiple times the repeater has gone down:

    Use the input frequency as simplex (requires me to read the manual [always bring it with you] to program this - I had never done it before - and don't remember now)

    Switch to new (not on the list) simplex frequency.

    Switch to new (not on the list) repeater.

    Don't buy cheap tools. To a large degree, you get what you pay for.

    Quote Originally Posted by sachilles View Post
    Forgive me for my ignorance as I'm new at this....my only prior radio experience was with CB's many moons ago.

    What sort of programming do you have to do in the field? I guess I envisioned you enter a frequency in, and away you go. I assume there must be more to it than that?
    press on,
    just a poor, dumb, Michigan(now Wisconsin) navie
    KC8YHT
    jimmy

  4. #13
    Dramamine is for DramaQueens Morison's Avatar
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    I've seen every situation Jimmy listed happen at an event I've been at in the last 5 years as well as someone having to cross-band through another operator's rig on a number of occasions.

    Don't buy cheap tools. To a large degree, you get what you pay for.
    Worth repeating.
    Keith Morison
    Morison Communications

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  6. #14
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    Default No Problem on the loaner!

    Quote Originally Posted by sachilles View Post
    Ok, so I finally put my license to work at NEFR, since Brian was nice enough to loan me a radio.

    While I'd prefer to spend much less, I have $150 in my budget.

    I want a handheld at this time.

    It will be used occasionally at rallies to work a ham station. It will also go in my co-drivers bag if I'm in the silly seat. I have no plans for other uses at this time.

    Brian loaned me a yaesu this weekend, but I have no idea what model it was, but seemed to work well for me.....but I sure as hell have no clue what most of the buttons did. It dual received, which was neat, but also a little distracting for a novice.

    Simple is better for me. SIMPLE. Think of me as a driver who got suckered into co-driver spot....i'm not that smart. Hooking it up to a computer for programming is fine by me...rather use a pc keyboard than a bunch of little buttons.
    is the newer yaesu ft-252 or 257 a good solution?

    It would likely be used for North east area events. So that would be NEFR, maybe STPR, ESPR and BRS. It will likely sit in a box 350 days a year.

    Just tell me what to buy. Don't try to explain too much unless you speak slowly and use small words.
    You were using a Yaesu VX7R Tri-band handheld. It's a great radio if you need something that can do most everything and need it waterproof. They are one of the more durable HTs (handhelds). I also run Baofeng UV-5r+ radios because they are CHEAP and work well. For $50~ you can pick one up with a spare battery and be good to go. Don't drop it, don't get it wet, and it will keep working. Programming the Baofengs are not as easy as the Yaesu's when you are doing it on the handset vs, using a programming cable and a pc. Do yourself a favor and see if you can find a Nifty card. It's like Cliffnotes for the radio manual and it's waterproof and made for field use. if you have more questions, shoot em out.

    Brian
    N1BMG

  7. #15
    Spectator Wrangler Bruce Beauvais's Avatar
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    One advantage to a "big three" handheld is automatic repeater offsets. It makes it much more user friendly and faster to program. One sets the repeater output frequency, turns on the repeater function - done. The Chinese handhelds require setting receive and transmit frequencies. The Chinese radios- aimed partially at the commercial market include DCS squelch settings - an unnecessary complication for ham radio. The Beofeng adds to the problem by adding a crapload of CTCSS codes that aren't used in North America. The "big three'' and Wouxun offer only the standard set of CTCSS codes.
    I've only programmed the Chinese radios with a PC. I haven't tried the cheat cards but the manufacturers
    instructions are in bad Chinglish- which is why the PC works well. Advantage to the Chinese radios is that the programming seems to be very similar. Learn one and one can likely do the rest. The Beofengs ( UV-5R/RA/RE and B5/B6) do seem to be identical with the exception of the number of characters available for a channel name should that option be chosen.
    I like the Chinese radios for commercial use- for rally/ham I'd get a "real" ham radio. The prices quoted - with the exception of the Beofengs- are really close. $110-119 for a Wouxun, $129 for a Yeasu- not a great deal of difference. The OP seemed to be looking to stay to the KISS side of radio- I'd stay with a big three unit.
    I own both Yaesu and Wouxun radios. The Wouxun goes to the racetrack but the Yaesu radios go to rallies.
    Last edited by Bruce Beauvais; 08-01-2013 at 07:17 PM. Reason: more info
    Bruce Beauvais
    de N8WLF

  8. #16

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    Thank you very much Bruce, that sinks in for me.

    I'll try to find a better deal on the FT60R and go that route.

    Done, sold, mind made up. Thanks all.

  9. #17
    your other left, you idiot
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    I didn't realize the Chinese ones don't do the automatic offsets.

    Really old units don't. I have a hacked Yaesu that doesn't. You do not want one of those - it is a real pain to plug those in (a luxury once sampled becomes a necessity) (not everyone gives you the second freq, so you have to look it up).

    Adding to your knowledge/confusion/$ - the antenna that comes with an HT is not the best (the rubber ducky) (all the world is a compromise), so buy a better one (generally [as in many things in life] bigger is better).

    Scan Craigslist. Seldom is there a deal on FleaBay.

    I have an FT-60R, and also the Nifty! Quick-Reference guide (lot easier to carry that in the rally car). Recommend both. Yaesus are bullet proof and lots of people to ask for help at rallies.

    Quote Originally Posted by sachilles View Post
    Thank you very much Bruce, that sinks in for me.

    I'll try to find a better deal on the FT60R and go that route.

    Done, sold, mind made up. Thanks all.
    press on,
    just a poor, dumb, Michigan(now Wisconsin) navie
    KC8YHT
    jimmy

  10. #18
    Spectator Wrangler Bruce Beauvais's Avatar
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    Jimmy is correct. If a MARS/CAP mod is done on most Yaesu radios, mobile or handheld, one gains out-of-band transmit and loses the automatic offset feature. I suspect that this will become less of an issue. Now that commercial radios are narrow-band ( ham radios are wideband) and the Chinese commercial radios are inexpensive, the incentive to modify a "real" ham radio is much smaller. Besides one always takes the risk of screwing up a perfectly good ham radio by doing the mod. Don't ask me how I know.
    The Chinese radios are aimed at commercial (part 90) service. Part 90 radios are not supposed to be end-user programmable. That's the reason why they're difficult to program off the key pad and easy with a PC. One just enters ALL the variables- Transmit/receive frequencies, transmit/receive squelch codes, transmit power and channel name and pushes the button. The hope that the PC recognizes the programming cable so it can talk to the radio.
    Last edited by Bruce Beauvais; 08-02-2013 at 05:55 PM.
    Bruce Beauvais
    de N8WLF

  11. #19
    pressing on tirelessly
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    Another vote for the FT-60R. Good solid radio. It probably has more features than you'll need, but it definitely works well.

    I recommend picking up one of the battery cases that allows you to use AA batteries if the stock rechargeable goes bad. They can be picked up for relatively cheap, and that and a handful of AA's is useful insurance.


    Not to derail the conversation or anything, but I've had good luck with buying used radios on Ebay. YMMV. I've probably bought about 20 ham and GMRS radios of assorted makes. One had a flaky knob, another had a mic with a bad plug. Both were easy fixes for me, but it's certainly understandable that someone else may not want to take that chance. As a general tip, look for sellers with a perfect rating that've done a moderate amount of sales - somewhere between 50 and 200, say. Those tend to be the folks who have decent-working stuff that they just don't want any more. Any fewer than that and they don't have enough history; more than that and they're likely a bulk-reseller who hasn't done much more than a quick spot-check of the item. The latter group will generally accept a return if it's not up to par, but it's a pain to deal with.

  12. #20
    Straight @ "T" w1jim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Beauvais View Post
    If a MARS/CAP mod is done on most Yaesu radios, mobile or handheld, one gains out-of-band transmit and loses the automatic offset feature.
    Not in my experience w/ VX-150, VX5R & FT-8800R - YMMV.
    I don't care where you live - it's a long walk home.

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