I do not use MURS. but I found my self needy to read this due to lack of activity here on this site. We need new members and more active members. is there anyway to get device wholesalers or merchants to include resource information with their new radios. a notation if you plan to use this for GMRS check out these sites, ie: myGMRS.com or if you plan to use it for HAM, check out these links. My guess is that more than 90% of the people that buy and use these radios don't get licensed to begin with. I am getting my nephew into radio`and I hope he passes his exam for his HAM. I like GMRS for contacting family and friends who do not have or won't get their HAM license. in any event, let's reach out in some way to welcome new GMRS users and members on this site. I am also on RR and I notice other members from here there. but myGMRS.com has a place as it serves a particular need.
MURS pre programmed equipment
Posted 13 May 2013 - 02:53 PM
Perhaps Rich D. can delve into potential marketing or adverstising of the myGMRS.com domain and forum - we'll hope that he stops by here in the next few days and sees your post.
You're right - As of today, May 13, the form has 54 registered members - nearly all have not posted but most do read all active topics.
We invite everyone to jump in and participate and if anyone has questions about procedures or equipment, please don't hesitate to ask.
- Logan5 likes this
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Posted 04 June 2013 - 06:03 PM
I have a couple of Dakota Alert base station radios. One is currently at my brother-in-law's place, across the cove about 2 miles from here. The radios put out a full 2 watts per my meter. I can cover our little town pretty well with an outside j-pole antenna.
Since I do a lot of digital stuff on the ham bands, an appealing feature of MURS is that you can do digital modes. I just audio couple between the PC and radio's speakers & microphones. If I read the rules correctly, you can also encrypt. The telemetry units that use MURS (e.g. http://www.raveon.com/rv_m3_m.html) used encrypted digital transmissions.
In our area, there is almost no MURS traffic (and not a whole lot more GMRS).
- Logan5 likes this
Posted 10 July 2013 - 06:30 PM
I can vouch for the Baofeng UV5r model radios. I have three, up and running. Price has come down alot (<$45 + FS&H on amazon w/xtra battery, charger, and earpiece/mic) make these almost disposable!
Use CHIRP software...and Baofeng USB cable for PC, makes life infinitely easier. I programmed two radios last night in less than 5 mins.
- Logan5 likes this
Posted 17 July 2013 - 12:26 AM
I still have a couple of those MURS only 5 channel Columbia Telecommunications, Inc HT's. A friend of mine bought out a whole bunch of 'em and I bought a couple of those HT's off from him for $20.00 each. They look like an FRS HT, but only have the 5 MURS channel and RX the weather channels. They also come with HI / LO power, CTCSS, the useless annoying CALL button, monitor button, backlit display, VOX, Lock button, SP/MIC jack, and take either four alkalines or NiMH batteries. One fixable flaw, the condenser mic sounds like crap under the plastic case. A lot of those new Chinese HT's suffer from that too and thier TX audio sounds like crap. Just pull the HT apart, pop out the mic from its round housing, and drill a 1/8" hole, and slap 'er back together. An amazing sound difference.
Posted 17 July 2013 - 04:34 AM
Good hint on the audio quality upgrade, Phil... much appreciated.
Posted 23 July 2013 - 03:55 PM
Billy et al,
Where'd u get the info on UV5R part 95 cert?
I use CHIRP as well as the Baofeng UV5R software to program my radios...I like the pre-configs in CHIRP...just cut and paste.
BTW, these radios and accessories have really come down in price...sub $45...almost disposable?
Posted 24 July 2013 - 11:37 AM
The UV5R is not part95 cert. and as far as I know, no Baofeng radios are. However as I have always believed, Part95 cert is in the programming of the radio, as seen with the powerwerx made by Wouxum, this shows us that a radio once properly programmed is technically compliant. not certified until the manufacture applies for the certification. I myself also use Baofeng radios, since they are half the cost of similar part95 cert. radios. and 4 watt's is better than 1 or 2 watts. also versatility, Many Part95 cert. radios that include FRS are no so versatile. The GMRS service allow up to 5 watt's and removable antennas, FRS does not. I have my UV5R programed for GMRS freq's only and when I am in my truck, I use an external antenna to prevent radiating my 4 watt's back into my head and my body. For less technical users I like the BF888 it has 2 watt's, comes with a gain UHF only antenna and works 2X as good at twice the range of a Motorola bubble pak radio, and only cost 19.99 shipped. I go to the airport once a week, the BF888 hit's the repeater at 7.6 miles as easily as the UV5R and the UVB5. for those of us not made of money, the value of these radios far outweigh the certification issues, However the use of non part 95 cert. radios is likely against the charter that allows GMRS service, even though the wording seems vague I am sure these radios were never meant to be allowed and against your license to use them. However with so many Hotels and taxi cab drivers illegally using and also using non part 95 cert. equipment, The FCC will unlikely ever get to prosecuting actual family use of non cert. equipment. I say use equipment that is affordable and well within the spec's for technical part 95 certification, use good radio operating practice and you'll be fine.
- JeremyM and mainehazmt like this
Posted 24 July 2013 - 01:56 PM
From what I can tell based on the information found on fcc.gov, GMRS equipment can operate on the FRS channels but if it has a removable antenna and an ERP greater than 500mW then the user must have a GMRS license. GMRS equipment may operate on FRS only channels as long as their Tx does not exceed 500mW without a license and not more the 5W with a license.
The description of the two services has become muddled together.
Posted 09 August 2013 - 04:25 PM
Someone mentioned the Wouxun portable radio. Can it be programed to power down to be legal on MURS ?
I realize that repeaters are not permitted on MURS but was wondering if when working out in a field situation - only all qualified family members of course -if I could program the hand held unit to transmit on MURS to a nearby Wouxun mobile in one of our vehicles which would in turn cross band repeat it onto to a GMRS frequency to a repeater 15 miles away.
The second question question, a technical one at that, can the hand held unit be programed to transmit on VHF and receive on UHF as if it is one "channel" so to speak.
I ordered a few and am looking forward to learning it's capabilities.
thanks for any input.
Posted 09 August 2013 - 07:10 PM
My Wouxun's low power setting is 1 watt which is within the 2 watt max allowed on MURS. You can't directly relay to other services.
Posted 09 August 2013 - 07:15 PM
Thanks Steve, and I am aware of the relay restrictions which makes me wonder why the even make this radio so it can cross band repeat if it is no legal.
I am just trying to learn what it can actually do in addition to what it is allowed to do. Knowledge is very powerful and I like to know what it can do, even if I never do it.
Posted 09 August 2013 - 07:53 PM
By "portable" I presume you meant the HT which can be powered down to 1 watt.
For the Chinese Part 90 radios that can crossband repeat, you can crossband VHF/UHF ham or (when working with a local public safety agency) you can crossband repeat on appropriate public safety frequencies. Our RACES group has ham and public safety crossband set ups.
Posted 09 August 2013 - 08:00 PM
Yes the "portable" I meant was the HT - we started calling them "portables" back in the 60's and never changed.
Thanks for the information
Posted 10 August 2013 - 05:57 AM
Note: The Commission has not 'directly' addressed "emergency operations" regarding MURS equipment in subpart J, 95.1301 to 95.1317 .
However, in the GMRS "Permissible Communications" section, it states "If necessary to communicate an emergency message from a station in a GMRS system, the licensee may permit:...... (2) The station operator to communicate the emergency message to any radio station.
Once again, the Commission regulations are unclear as to whether "any radio station" means any GMRS station or ANY STATION in ANY radio service.
My opinion alone, but I can only think that the Commission would not be critical of a licensed GMRS operator using any means possible during a bona-fide EMERGENCY to get information and assistance requests out to Public Safety by way of a temporary relay to ANY RADIO STATION as long as the relay was for the imminent protection of life and property and was taken down as soon as the critical communications were completed. If this was initiated by an MURS radio, since there are no emergency protocols in writing for MURS, a licensed GMRS operator using common sense and proper emergency operating protocols would most likely be safe in doing so. This would be especially true in a natural disaster where cell phones are all but useless and personal communications equipment brought into a devastation area was the only means of communicating critical info to others by "any means possible".
Posted 10 August 2013 - 08:32 AM
I think that's one real value for the "opened up" Chinese Part 90 radios. In a valid emergency you can communicate with services outside of what you are authorized to operate on. On my Wouxun, Beofang and TYT rigs I have ham, GMRS, MURS, marine and public safety frequencies programmed in.
Posted 10 August 2013 - 10:33 AM
Probably a good idea, Steve. Responsible persons will only use those frequencies in a dire emergency and you can't use something under those circumstances unless it's in the radio ahead of time.
I took it one step further... I am licensed in Part 90 for most of the same itinerant frequencies that the Red Cross is licensed for and in a severe emergency, I could communicate with them, as a volunteer member of the Red Cross in several states, directly under 90.407:
§ 90.407 Emergency communications.
The licensee of any station authorized under this part may, during a period of emergency in which the normal communication facilities are disrupted as a result of hurricane, flood, earthquake or similar disaster, utilize such station for emergency communications in a manner other than that specified in the station authorization or in the rules and regulations governing the operation of such stations. The Commission may at any time order the discontinuance of such special use of the authorized facilities.
We all hope and pray that our equipment will never have to be utilized in this manner, but if worst comes to worst, it could potentially save lives.
Posted 12 August 2013 - 12:07 PM
I tried out the MURS channels with my HT set for low power (1W). The MURS frequencies on 1W could penetrate better and farther than GMRS on 4W. I badly want to drop down into the VHF range with a decent power now. I think I will take my HAM Technician test next month so I can start playing with the 2M band.
I will keep my GMRS current and continue using it with my wife, but seeing what the lower bands can do has given me the itch.
- Logan5 likes this
Posted 12 August 2013 - 04:17 PM
Jeremy - Good thoughts.
I have commercial licensing in low band VHF, high band VHF and UHF as well as GMRS and non-licensed MURS. Comparing range yourself with similar output powers in these frequency spectrums verifies all the published range statistics for simplex systems. The higher the frequency, the less range you have - utilizing the same output power and antenna heights (or using portables at the same height off the ground.)
There is a nice helpful chart detailing this topic of frequency vs. range in the following website...
- Logan5 likes this
Posted 14 August 2013 - 01:00 PM
I checked out that chart and compared to my experience that chart is VERY modest. My antenna base is approximately 15ft off the ground, my antenna is 8.9ft in length, putting the tip of the antenna at 24ft and the most effective radiating portion of the radome at 19.5ft. I am using a 40W transmitter, 50' of LMR400, and my antenna is a 7dBd or 9dBi gain vertically polarized omni. By my calculations, my ERP is ~140W. This is taking into account the 7dBd antenna, line loss of 3.1dB per 100' of LMR400 (I'm at 50', so 1.55dB), for a total wattage loss of 12.01 and wattage output to antenna of 27.99.
By this chart I should have about 17 miles of transmit distance (and by my calculations a citation from the FCC), but I am hitting a repeater 31 miles away pretty regularly. The receiving end is about 110ft off the ground though, so that might be helping.
After doing my calculations I am a little worried about my output. My license only allows for a maximum ERP of 50W. Did I mess up on my calculations? I used a couple ERP calculators online to check my work and it appears to be accurate...
I used: http://www.ctspectrum.com/home/node/25 for the ERP and http://www.timesmicrowave.com/calculator/?productId=52&frequency=460&runLength=100&mode=calculate#form for the line loss. I checked the first site against http://www.antennas.ca/calc_ERP.htm which was even more gracious with the ERP, putting me at 146W.
Should I be worried?
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