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FCC action that may affect GMRS users and repeaters.


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#1 Logan5

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Posted 29 August 2013 - 12:58 PM

http://transition.fc...A-13-1838A1.pdf 



#2 PastorGary

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Posted 29 August 2013 - 01:33 PM

After reading the text, I can say that because of the band separation and their narrowband request as presented, there would be no affect to GMRS operations.  That being said, since there are MANY VHF Part 90 frequencies available again because of users going to 700 and 800 systems before January 01, 2013, the petitioner would be well served to look at VHF High Band where more space is available now - for even VHF trunking.


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#3 Guest_spd641_*

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 12:36 AM

I agree with Pastor Gary,there should be no interference to GMRS.


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#4 JeremyM

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 08:23 AM

Yep, with narrowbanding in place this should not be an issue. I foresee narrowbanding occurring again in the future. As receivers and transmitters get more precise and their selectivity gets better, we will see even smaller steps.

 

The side effect to this will be increasingly more expensive equipment. There will be a surplus of obsolete equipment and high demand for the newer, so the prices will of course go up.


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#5 Guest_spd641_*

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Posted 30 August 2013 - 09:23 PM

One good thing is some older used radios are narrow band capable.I don't think it would really be a big deal if you shop around.I used my radio set for narrow band today and hit the GMRS repeater just north west of Atlanta this afternoon from 130 miles away in Alabama without much effort.I used to talk to the owner of the North Georgia GMRS system on a regular basis and he is a member of this forum or was I need to email him to rejoin.If anyone is in the Georgia he has a website and welcome users his site is www.northgeorgiagmrs.com

 

I do not like the fact they do decrease range in some areas but if you have a good wide area coverage you do not have too much lose.I hope things stay the way they are though,there is no use in messing with a band that no one else uses therefore there should be no change.It has been 3 years since all the NPRM went out and hopefully it has disappeared and not be acted upon.We have heard all sides good and bad and some of those who interpret the new proposed rules did not read what the proposal said.

 

I for one have read it many times and see no where in it about doing away with repeaters and if you look at the proposed frequency list it shows the 467.XXX as control and repeater input frequencies.I do not see anything except where the FCC asked if repeaters were still needed and if higher powered radios were still needed with all the commercial options available.IMO I do not see where the FCC should be telling us we need to pay for the commercial services Nextel,cellular phone... etc when we have the option of GMRS they are not salesmen for these companies.

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 William


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#6 WPXM352

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 02:01 PM

This does affect existing GMRS users. The FCC left a 12.5 KHz guard band at the lower and upper edges of the GMRS band for good reason. Receivers of existing 25 KHz bandwidth GMRS subscribers and repeaters will be affected by transmissions on those proposed channel centers. I urge GMRS'ers to take a position on this issue or two GMRS repeater channels will be demolished in major urban areas.

 

If you are of the opinion that 12.5 KHz narrowbanding is a good and useful mode for GMRS, you should take note that there is a serious performance impact with 12,5 KHz NB, one that can not be resolved by going digital as many Part 90 licensees find themselves doing. Part 95 cannot use digital mode. Further there is the interference from the proposed rulemaking.

 

If the FCC allows this, be prepared to endure MotoTrbo or NXDN digital interference within your repeater (and subscriber) receiver bandwidth.



#7 WPXM352

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 02:06 PM

After reading the text, I can say that because of the band separation and their narrowband request as presented, there would be no affect to GMRS operations.  That being said, since there are MANY VHF Part 90 frequencies available again because of users going to 700 and 800 systems before January 01, 2013, the petitioner would be well served to look at VHF High Band where more space is available now - for even VHF trunking.

 

The petitioner would better serve the Part 90 industry by forcing the FCC to revamp the VHF band plan to segregate repeater inputs and outputs and move high power paging channels away from low power use. If this had been done 20 years ago in conjunction with the narrow banding rule making, licensees, particularly public safety would have been well served.



#8 captdan

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 04:38 PM

So for those of us that have very little technical knowledge - if this is a bad thing for GMRS how about a member with more information and ability provide a sample letter that we could copy and send to the FCC or congressman or senators - any or all - whoever would be appropriate so we can try and prevent this? 

 

 

Just a thought

 

 

Dan



#9 JeremyM

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 05:18 PM

So for those of us that have very little technical knowledge - if this is a bad thing for GMRS how about a member with more information and ability provide a sample letter that we could copy and send to the FCC or congressman or senators - any or all - whoever would be appropriate so we can try and prevent this?


Just a thought


Dan


Dan, while the need to take action if you so see fit is better done sooner than later, there is plenty of time to research and ask questions. Blindly sending off an email with someone else's opinion only helps the cause. It does not serve to help you understand what this means or why it may negatively impact you.

Someone who wishes to take action for a cause deserves a lot of respect, but not more than one who understands the cause and why they should take action. I think a lot of us need to read this proposal (myself included), what it really states, and how it will affect our current services. We need to fully understand the gravity of these changes before we pick up the torches and pitchforks. Once we have a full understanding of the impact we can then pick up our torches if so necessary.

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#10 JeremyM

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 06:10 PM

OK so this is where I am from my research:

  1. The difference between each suggested frequency and the nearest GMRS frequency is exactly 12.5K steps
  2. When a center frequency is set at 462.5375 it can have a spectrum spread of up to 6K above and 6K below the center frequency with 0.25K as a buffer between channels on each side
    1. Assuming narrowbanding is being used
    2. This proposal is for commercial use so we must assume they will be forced to adhere to narrowbanding requirements
  3. The current proposal will leave an additional 4K of headroom between these channel's spectrum spread and the neighboring GMRS frequencies
  4. Now we must take into account GMRS equipment is not narrowband required meaning its steps are 25K steps unless using a narrowband compliant device
  5. A center frequency of 462.550 on wideband will have a spectrum spread of 12K above and 12K below the center frequency with 0.5K as a buffer between channels on each side
    1. This wider spectrum spread eats up that extra 4K of headroom and then some between the narrowband channels below it
  6. This will result in the proposed frequencies being received at the edge of wideband equipment listening range on the 550 and 725 and will also result in some wideband equipment transmissions leaking into the listening range of the 5375 proposed frequency
  7. In the end this will not affect the 5375 or 7375 channels as they will be running digital, but it will affect analog wideband users on GMRS. This will not likely affect users who are using narrowband equipment.

In conclusion:

Will this affect GMRS services who use 550 and 725? YES, if they are wideband and trying to use simplex or duplex on 550 and 725 without CTCSS or DPL codes.

 

However, one thing I would like to note: How many users of GMRS use these channels without CTCSS or DPL codes? I am thinking very few.

 

This definitely walks on those GMRS channels and does not allow them to have free use as intended and outlined in part 95. I do not agree with, nor do I support this proposal, but I do not think it would be the end of GMRS if it happened. It will only impact wideband users. I think we should definitely oppose this, but I don't think its a call for torches and pitchforks.


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#11 JohnE

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 08:55 PM

my best guess is that they will be using P25 equipment, most likely kenwood since Nexedge can do 6.25Kc's. by the same token I don't know who is doing their coordination b/c there are freq's out there you just have to spend the time listening to them. the last 4 time I have had to get channels for someone I was given a list of 20-30 pairs to listen to, it takes time a lot of time.

IMO there is no reason at this time to have to infringe on our small piece of spectrum. I really believe they have not weighed all their options here. I live and work in what I pretty much call the RF capital of the world. there isn't a building residential or commercial pretty much in this city that doesn't have a or multiple repeaters or simplex radios of some sort.  I just find this request out of touch w/reality for now.

making the exception once will open the flood gates. as an analogy look what happened to oil prices once the speculators got in.


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Powered by Kenwood, Motorola, EF Johnson,Cresend  Milcom and Henry


#12 WPXM352

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 12:12 AM

The fallacy in this comment (quoted below) is that regardless of whether CTCSS or DPL/DCS is being used, a significant degradation will occur to the reception of the GMRS signals. Yes, having CTCSS or DPL/DCS will eliminate the probability (in most cases) of hearing the interfereing signal, but valid signals will be subjected to noise interference. This could be a very distant signal just noticible at 3 dB of degradation, to the extreme of a repeater being entirely blocked by the signal 12.5 KHz off the channel center from a mobile transmitter in the same City..

 

Back in the 1980's, I was responsible for UHF repeaters on the Sears (Willis) Tower rooftop. We had a room full of UHF community repeaters which were fed from a master receive antenna at the very top of one of the wjite pylons. This was a tremendous receiver system. On one occasion,. I found a repeater that was totally deaf. The culprit was a hospital cardiac telemetry transmitter of less than 10 milliwatts, inside a hospital room, operating 12.5 KHz offset from the repeater input frequency.

 

Bottom line is you don't want these part 90 folks inside GMRS bandwidth any more than they want us.

 

"In conclusion:

 

Will this affect GMRS services who use 550 and 725? YES, if they are wideband and trying to use simplex or duplex on 550 and 725 without CTCSS or DPL codes.

 

However, one thing I would like to note: How many users of GMRS use these channels without CTCSS or DPL codes? I am thinking very few."



#13 WPXM352

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 12:26 AM

my best guess is that they will be using P25 equipment, most likely kenwood since Nexedge can do 6.25Kc's. by the same token I don't know who is doing their coordination b/c there are freq's out there you just have to spend the time listening to them. the last 4 time I have had to get channels for someone I was given a list of 20-30 pairs to listen to, it takes time a lot of time.

IMO there is no reason at this time to have to infringe on our small piece of spectrum. I really believe they have not weighed all their options here. I live and work in what I pretty much call the RF capital of the world. there isn't a building residential or commercial pretty much in this city that doesn't have a or multiple repeaters or simplex radios of some sort.  I just find this request out of touch w/reality for now.

making the exception once will open the flood gates. as an analogy look what happened to oil prices once the speculators got in.

 

I am surprised I haven't seen more comments on this topic as in the end it has a direct impact on how the FCC treats GMRS. If you recall the NPRM 10-106 in 2010 (Comments still open by the way), what happened then was the FCC got a floodgate of responses, mostly knocking down the proposed rules. I don't think the FCC was prepared, and rather expected a non showing of interest. Had that been the case, the NPRM would have essentially eliminated GMRS and in its stead, an FRS like environment of low power bubble pack radios and no repeaters. It is no doubt to me that the big names in industry (the ones who no longer type accept their high power radios for GMRS) would like GMRS to fade away so that a few more channels would be come available for commercial customers.

 

I don't think it is any coincidence, the FCC eliminated station licensing for repeaters. To the FCC the repeaters don't exist. If they don't exist, the FCC does not have to protect them. If GMRS becomes "refarmed", nobody will get a check for moving to a new frequency band.

 

This NPRM is equally important, both from the standpoint of interference, and from the showing of continued interest in GMRS and GMRS repeaters.



#14 WPXM352

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 12:38 AM

So for those of us that have very little technical knowledge - if this is a bad thing for GMRS how about a member with more information and ability provide a sample letter that we could copy and send to the FCC or congressman or senators - any or all - whoever would be appropriate so we can try and prevent this? 

 

 

Just a thought

 

 

Dan

You might take a look at the responses to NPRM 10-106 and find a style and preamble that you are comforable with.

 

Tell FCC who you are, why GMRS is important to you, and then explain why it is detrimental to have commercial operators inside the now protected 25 KHz bandwidth of the band edge GMRS channels. You might cite the existing guard band the FCC has in place as being good engineering practice.

 

Whatever you do, don't get caught up in copycat letters. In 10-106 there were a slew of essentially form letters sent by well intended folks. However, one of those mailings had a technical error which implyed the respondents were pro something they were likley not. Additionally the letters lacked the vitality of individuals who were passionate about the cause.

 

Unlike NPRM 10-106 which required dozens of pages to respond, this filing can be dealt with in a few paragraphs unless someone wants to make an engineering argument.



#15 captdan

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 12:46 AM

I'm sorry - I do not think I suggested anything about a "call for torches and pitchforks" or anything like that.  

 

All I asked for is if someone who totally understood the issue could provide a simple - sample letter that could be copied and forwarded by people interested in opposing this proposal.  A letter from me to the FCC saying hey this is a bad idea and I oppose it  will not have nearly as much impact as a letter from me to the FCC with some basic facts as to why I would oppose it and how it will negatively affect my use of the licensed frequencies of GMRS. I am no expert - but from what I understand we only have eight (8) frequencies that we are allowed to use and if we are using a repeater there are eight (8) coordinating frequencies that are used for the repeater input.

 

I am not trying to offend anyone - but quite honestly I do not need to understand the technicalities of the situation. I am an end user - I am not a hobby user - I purchased GMRS radios to provide communications on a large property where cell phone service is extremely poor. Additionally, in the event of a breakdown of commercial communications systems my family and extended family will be able to communicate.  I want to ensure that a radio system I have and will continue to invest in will be available to operate in the best possible way as it was designed.  If someone is proposing a change - I do not need to understand the details of a spectrum spread above and below the center frequency.  I just need to know if it will negatively impact GMRS as we know it. If it does - a simple layman's terms explanation of how and why this change will negatively affect GMRS is what I would need to write to the FCC and my elected officials. When I write to a Federal agency about something I want or don't want done I copy my federal elected officials. Actually my Congressman told me to do this many years back.  My letter to the FCC will be read by someone and my comments filed.  When the Congressman sends a copy of my letter to the Chairman of the FCC with a cover note from the Congressman - someone a little higher in the food chain of the FCC is going to read the letter and take note of the opinion for or against a proposal, I am not delusional I do not think the Chairman of the FCC is going to read the letter. The Congressman will also appreciate it if the letter is in simple terms - such as this proposal will interfere with GMRS licensed communications on 2 of the 8 frequencies or on 25% of the frequencies allotted to GMRS use. Something he and his staff can understand.  

 

I am not asking for any more respect - less respect or for that mater any respect - I was just asking if there was someone who truly understood the issue and would be willing to draft a simple sample letter outlining the reasons we would be opposed to this proposal.



#16 JeremyM

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 08:36 AM

Dan, I did not foresee how my message might be interpreted before posting but now I do. I apologize and did not mean to insinuate that you specifically were ready to pick up the torch or pitchfork. I was speaking in general terms in the second paragraph and should have specified. That was my fault. I also did not mean to offend in any way. I was not familiar with your particular interest or uses of the service. I merely assumed (which was in error) that since you were on the forum you were interested as a hobbyist.

 

JLeikhim, I understand what you are saying in terms of the CTCSS and DPL (DCS) not being a resolution. I did not mean to indicate that they were a resolution, only a damage mitigation step to try and prevent interference. I know and understand that it will not completely fix the issue and some negative impact in varying degrees will be experienced by users of wideband equipment.

 

However, I did indicate further down in my post that it would walk on GMRS frequencies used by wideband equipment and I did not support the proposal for that reason. I feel the portion of my post that was quoted might have been taken slightly out of context (partially because of my lack of clarity).


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#17 PastorGary

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 05:46 AM

`

`

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The Forum Staff has been given an assurance by un-named members, that by reopening this thread, no additional hints of a superiority attitude will be present. We are opening this thread again for civil exchanges and we thank everyone for their patience while this situation was worked out.

 

 

 

 

 

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#18 GWOD

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 02:10 AM

Gents:

 

As a new member to the forum and new to GMRS repeater operations (end user), as of April 2014 is it mandatory to operate in narrow band 12.5 KHz on the 8 repeater pair frequencies?

 

On a side note will someone elaborate on what in practice would constitute a use case for GMRS "fixed station" (limited to 15 W transmit power) in a GMRS radio system as defined below in part 95.  

 

From FCC part 95:

 

A GMRS system is one or more transmitting units used by station operators

to communicate messages. A GMRS system is comprised of:
 

(a) One or more station operators;
 

( One mobile station consisting of one or more mobile units (see
Sec. 95.23 of this part);
 

© One or more land stations (optional);
 

(d) Paging receivers (optional); and
 

(e) Fixed stations (optional).



#19 PastorGary

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 04:57 AM

Gregory - Welcome to the Forum.

 

Your narrowband question was answered in your other post. To recap, GMRS is a Part 95 radio service.  The narrowband requirement is ONLY for SOME Part 90 radio service frequencies (at this time).

 

Regarding a 'fixed station' - There are only a couple references made to a fixed station in the rules. There is no description specifically for a fixed station in 95.23 or 95.25 as there are for other station types.  There is a reference to 'fixed stations' licensed before March 1968 in 95.29g but that does not include a system description either.

 

I'm no law expert, but most GMRS operators follow the regulations in section 95.135a and 95.639a1  regarding output power (not ERP) for mobile or repeater based systems.

 

Perhaps others here may have opinions, but that being said, the rules governing GMRS have been debated for over 40 years and the rules are incomplete at best as compared to Part 90 wording.

 

Others are welcome to weigh in on this.....



#20 GWOD

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 04:28 PM

Thank you. Glad to start off here "listening" and catch up on topics.  Are any members on this forum involved with (past/present) in the Personal Radio Steering Group (PSRG). I have their 1997 National Repeater Guide 10th edition and I was wondering what the status of PSRG is seeing that the web site is still online.  Be well.






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