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One handheld/mobile that can lawfully operate in GMRS and ham?


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#1 krvw

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Posted 12 February 2020 - 04:34 PM

As I'm pondering the path in front of me, it seems there is quite a minefield with regards to FCC Part 95a and such.

 

Let me say clearly that it is my intention to be lawful.

 

That said, I'd also like to be able to operate in both the GMRS and ham spectra. (GMRS for comms with my family and ham for my own hobby purposes, assuming I pass my ham tech exam in a couple weeks.)

 

So, my question is this: Is there a single handheld (and mobile) radio that can be lawfully used for both GMRS and ham?

 

Or, am I describing a proverbial unicorn?

 

Yeah, it looks like the various BaoFengs can be programmed for both freq bands, but not lawfully. What are my lawful options? 

 

Thanks folks.

 

Cheers,

 

Ken

WRFC318

 



#2 axorlov

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Posted 12 February 2020 - 08:16 PM

Anything Part 95a can legally be operated on ham band. But not vise-versa. For example, Kenwood TK-880 and TK-3170 that I have work fine on ham 70cm band. If you are looking into Part 95a 2m/70cm, I don't think these exist. But there is plenty of dual band Part 90 equipment.



#3 WRAF213

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 05:20 AM

Part of getting Part 95 type acceptance is not having amateur frequencies available on a GMRS radio. Modifying the frequency capabilities of the radio to gain access to 70cm or whatever band would void the Part 95 type acceptance. This should also apply to Part 90 use on GMRS as well, but it's a silly rule best ignored. Part 90 operation can occur in the 420-450 MHz band (every so often you'll see a STA for that). Unfortunately, the rule specifically mentions the Amateur Service. The intent of the rule is both to segregate the services by license type and to ensure the radio is type-certified over its entire operating spectrum.

#4 krvw

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 09:55 AM

"The intent of the rule is both to segregate the services by license type and to ensure the radio is type-certified over its entire operating spectrum."

 

That is a shame, IMHO. I would gladly spend a bit more $$$ on a radio that can lawfully operate in both spectra.

 

And, I have to admit an observation here: With BaoFengs and other CCRs running $20-25, being easily (CHIRP) programmable to run GMRS, FRS, MURS, ham, etc., and the likelihood of being caught doing so nearly 0, the FCC policy engine is well and truly hosed.

 

Oh, I get that the CCRs aren't as good, objectively speaking, as their higher $ counterparts, but that's another issue entirely.

 

Does someone make a BaoFeng-like radio that offers the feature set of a Bao, but also higher quality components?

 

NOT trying to encourage anyone to break the law. I'm just pointing out the utter foolishness of said laws and that the momentum of the masses will eventually doom those laws to failure, IMHO.

 

As a hobbyist, I want to swim in an unroped-off sea.

 

Cheers,

 

Ken



#5 Lscott

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 10:43 AM

I picked up 4 Kenwood TK-370G-1 radios off of eBay and some Ham swaps for a decent price if you look around. I've paid as little as $15 to around $40. You will need a charger and battery for most of the used radios. Most of the radios come with the antenna. Make sure you get the type 1 radio! There are several different versions covering sections of the 400 to 470 MHz range. The link below is the PDF version of the Kenwood brochure with the details for the radios and accessories.

 

https://5.imimg.com/...ood-tk-270g.pdf

 

Note the radio will do wide and narrow band. By removing a diode inside of the radio, covered in the service manual, then checking the option in the programming software you can enable front panel programming. It's a pain to program the radio this way but possible. I haven't mod'ed my radios since I would rather do the programming through the computer anyway.

 

The radio has Part 95A certification so you're legal on GMRS.

 

https://fccid.io/ALH29473110

 

The stated range for the radio is 450 to 470 Mhz. However the radio will function down to about 440 MHz which covers the Ham simplex and repeater sections of the band that you're most likely interested in using anyway. I have one sitting on my desk here at work right now scanning the GMRS/FRS - local mall security and some Ham repeaters frequencies. In fact I was monitoring a couple of Hams talking about the snow we're getting, on the GMARC repeater on top of the Renascence Center on the river front here in Detroit. That's about 14 to 15 miles from where I'm at. As others have pointed out it is legal to use Part 90 radios on the Ham bands.

 

To simulate a VFO I programmed a bunch of channels with 25KHz spacing. The channel names were things like 445-200, 445-225 etc. With 128 channels I had enough for the GMRS/FRS, some Ham repeaters and 20 to 30 Ham band simplex frequencies. The ARRL band plans shows the simplex section frequencies over the 442 - 445 MHz range. The repeater sections are 442-445 and 447-450 MHz.

 

The software to program the radio isn't hard to find and you can use the cheap "Baofeng" type USB to serial programming cable. The software will complain if you enter a frequency outside of the stated range but will accept it if you click OK.

 

Good luck with passing your Tech Class license test!!!


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#6 axorlov

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 12:29 PM

Radio probably would not lose Part 95 acceptance if one simply programs ham frequencies to it, without doing any hardware modifications. As was stated, many Part 95 and Part 90 radios allow programming of 70cm frequencies.


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#7 berkinet

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 03:13 PM

Radio probably would not lose Part 95 acceptance if one simply programs ham frequencies to it, without doing any hardware modifications. As was stated, many Part 95 and Part 90 radios allow programming of 70cm frequencies.

 

In the case of keypad programming, I believe the radio would not ever get Part95 acceptance if it were possible to program non-GMRS transmit frequencies. That is why it is locked out.  Though, I am no expert on the subject, Id guess as to programming non-GMRS frequencies using programming software, you are probably right about that not voiding the certification. 


Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.

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#8 Downs

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 11:03 PM

Look into the "MARS/CAP" mod for HAM radios.

Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk

A pile of "cheap Chinese radios", BF888s, UV5Rs, UV82s, KGUV8Ds, BFF8HP, UV50X2, and a few "good" radios, Yeasu FT310 (airband/nav), Yeasu FT90R (no longer in mobile service used as a base radio)


#9 Jones

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Posted 14 February 2020 - 10:48 AM

Look into the "MARS/CAP" mod for HAM radios.
 

The OP said he wanted to be lawful.  The MARS/CAP mods for ham radios are not in any way legal to use on GMRS/MURS.  Those mods are only legal if you are in fact a member of the Military Affiliated Radio Service or the Civil Air Patrol, using the radio on the military frequencies just outside of the ham bands.


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#10 Downs

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Posted 14 February 2020 - 01:12 PM



The OP said he wanted to be lawful. The MARS/CAP mods for ham radios are not in any way legal to use on GMRS/MURS. Those mods are only legal if you are in fact a member of the Military Affiliated Radio Service or the Civil Air Patrol, using the radio on the military frequencies just outside of the ham bands.


Yup missed that second sentence.

Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk

A pile of "cheap Chinese radios", BF888s, UV5Rs, UV82s, KGUV8Ds, BFF8HP, UV50X2, and a few "good" radios, Yeasu FT310 (airband/nav), Yeasu FT90R (no longer in mobile service used as a base radio)


#11 shaine

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Posted 16 February 2020 - 01:14 PM

I just discovered that Wouxon has GMRS radios that are repeater capable. I think they are on the higher end of Chinese radios.


https://www.buytwowa...g.html?___SID=U
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Shaine Mata

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#12 Downs

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Posted 16 February 2020 - 02:34 PM

I just discovered that Wouxon has GMRS radios that are repeater capable. I think they are on the higher end of Chinese radios.


https://www.buytwowa...g.html?___SID=U

Wouxoun makes good stuff. Ive got one of their KGUV8D HTs thats a nice radio. Dual band, dual reciever, cross band repeater, color screen ect. Rx and tx are clear. It cost quite a bit more than a Baofeng but its a more capable and nicer radio to boot.

Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk
  • shaine likes this

A pile of "cheap Chinese radios", BF888s, UV5Rs, UV82s, KGUV8Ds, BFF8HP, UV50X2, and a few "good" radios, Yeasu FT310 (airband/nav), Yeasu FT90R (no longer in mobile service used as a base radio)





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