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How many people really use the VHF radio MURS service?


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I know the FCC doesn't like the idea of mixing services together in one radio so this idea likely will never happen but from an operational point it makes sense. Most Ham HT's are dual band so a FRS/MURS specific dual band license free radio is possible.

Now that most FRS channels, NOT GMRS, are now limited to 2 watts, the same as MURS, combining both in the same radio would work out. Both are license free services. Nether service allows repeaters so no issue there. The radio would have the antenna permanently attached per FRS requirements however.

There are plenty of cheap dual band radios with tweaked firmware to comply with FRS or MURS. Allowing both in one radio you get better utilization of the hardware. Dual band rubber duck antennas are common for Ham HT's and wouldn't be a problem to tweak those for FRS and MURS. Plus if FRS UHF is unsuitable outdoors the user would simply try one of the MURS VHF channels. No need to carry around two radios.

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What would better is the FCC giving their official blessing to a dual service license free radio specifically for FRS and MURS use ONLY. 

The problem with the CCR's, beside some not having clean outputs, is the cost is so low lay people buy them and treat them like toys.

A few years ago somebody was wishing the local mall, by my work place, security supervisor Merry Christmas on their frequency! He wasn't happy and defiantly NOT in a happy holiday mood.

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15 minutes ago, Lscott said:

What would better is the FCC giving their official blessing to a dual service license free radio specifically for FRS and MURS use ONLY.

 

 

It's too bad 47 cfr 95.2761 and 95.561 disallow dual certification, because given the wording in 95.1761, it seems like that would be allowed from the gmrs side.

Or am I reading the FRS/MURS parts wrong?

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25 minutes ago, Lscott said:

A few years ago somebody was wishing the local mall, by my work place, security supervisor Merry Christmas on their frequency! He wasn't happy and defiantly NOT in a happy holiday mood.

I forgot which frequency that is!

It’s almost Valentines Day 🤣

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4 hours ago, wayoverthere said:

 

It's too bad 47 cfr 95.2761 and 95.561 disallow dual certification, because given the wording in 95.1761, it seems like that would be allowed from the gmrs side.

Or am I reading the FRS/MURS parts wrong?

You would think so. 
 

I have some Kenwood HT’s that have the old Part 95A and Part 90 certification. Sort of muddles up the rule part you mentioned. I’m going to guess the intent is to make sure that frequencies outside of GMRS are not accessible under any operator condition, or action, if the radio has the ability to use non GMRS frequencies through programming.

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1 hour ago, Lscott said:

You would think so. 
 

I have some Kenwood HT’s that have the old Part 95A and Part 90 certification. Sort of muddles up the rule part you mentioned. I’m going to guess the intent is to make sure that frequencies outside of GMRS are not accessible under any operator condition, or action, if the radio has the ability to use non GMRS frequencies through programming.

I know, the shuffle definitely muddies things. The wording in the current 95e seems to leave it open that 95e and 90 certification IS still possible, though I can't really see it making financial sense to the mfgs.

I can't see the price of new lmr gear selling much in the gmrs market to justify the cost of certifying, and cutting price to sell more kind of undercuts the lmr side. Probably the only ones still remaining are the ones that certified under 95a that have been able to maintain production under that certification (I believe it's been mentioned Kenwood has at least one, though I haven't gone searching for it.

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The Kenwood models that have the old Part 95A certification I own are:

TK-370

TK-370G

TK-3140

TK-3170

TK-3173

TK-3212

TK-5320

NX-300

Some of the radios come in different frequency splits. The one that do and have the Part 94A certification are the high split versions, starting at or above 450MHz.

The last two are combo analog and digital, P25 and NXDN.

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1 hour ago, Lscott said:

Some of the radios come in different frequency splits. The one that do and have the Part 94A certification are the high split versions, starting at or above 450MHz.

I have a corporate site in San Antonio that still uses the Kenwood TK-3173, 450-490 MHz. They were purchased as they would work for licensed corporate use, and for the company Emergency Operations Center use in the GMRS band, having that Part95A certification as well. Part 90 is mostly being locked down to computer programming instead of front panel programming (most of the time, there are always exceptions), and this worked for that site.

Soon, this site will be transitioning to Motorola Trbo XPR7550e radios, and Motorola just announced they may end production of that model next year, replacing it with a to be released model R7 radio, so there may be several hundred TK-3173's on the used market in that area in six months or so.

The list you mentioned are great radios for analog use, but I also used to work as an engineer for the JVC/Kenwood Group/Zetron (still prefer Motorola), so am a little biased in this at times. I will now only spend money on older Kenwood, or current Part 97 radios from Kenwood.

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17 minutes ago, PACNWComms said:

The list you mentioned are great radios for analog use, but I also used to work as an engineer for the JVC/Kenwood Group/Zetron (still prefer Motorola), so am a little biased in this at times. I will now only spend money on older Kenwood, or current Part 97 radios from Kenwood.

Kenwood is moving in the same direction as Motorola, they want to nick you for more money with every little feature, by making it a licensed option, need internet access for license validation etc. I have zero interest in their new radios like the NX-5xxx series. I'm like you, I'm sticking with the older radios.

Before I buy a used radio model I never had before I'll search for the programming software. If I can't find it on the 'net I won't waste my money on it.

If you can get your hands on a bunch of those used TK-3173's you shouldn't have much of a problem selling them on the auction sites for $50 or so as GMRS radios. Problem is most people selling them think they're worth 2 to 3 times that, they're not.

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48 minutes ago, tweiss3 said:

To be clear the NX-300 Type 2 400-470 (ALH378501) does not but they Type 2 450-520 (ALH378500) does.

Correct. I have the type 2 because i want to use them on the Ham Bands at some point. Unless one pulls the battery pack off and checks the FCC ID sticker you wouldn't know the difference.

A good very basic radio, even a kid could use, that works for GMRS are the TK-3160 and TK-3360 radios. I have a number of both, but neither one is certified for Part 95.

With some creative reading of the rules even these might be OK. A poster a while back had some contact with the FCC where they said they won't come after anybody for "just using a Part 90 radio" on GMRS unless you get busted for something else too. In that case the "something else" will likely be much more of  problem to worry about.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Answer to the specific question of who uses MURS.  I do for sure.  Or at least I put it in radios I have with the correct power out setting.  MURS is nice because it's pretty lax on the license requirements (don't believe there are any) so you don't need any authorization or hold a specific license (like ham radio) to use the frequencies within the regulations set by the FCC.  This is handy when you are doing site work with others and need radios that are cheap and simple enough to program (being a radio tech I have a supply of that).  You just hand them out and collect them at the end of the day.  A CP200 or other cheap radio that happens to fall from 200 feet off a tower is MUCH less of a loss than having one of your VHF / UHF XTS5000's make that same gravity fueled trip and die that horrible death. 

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34 minutes ago, Lscott said:

I monitor MURS along with FRS channels when at home. I hear way more activity on FRS/GMRS than on MURS, in fact I hear almost nothing on MURS. It seems to be mostly neglected in my area.

1 hour ago, WRKC935 said:

...This is handy when you are doing site work with others and need radios that are cheap and simple enough to program (being a radio tech I have a supply of that).  You just hand them out and collect them at the end of the day...

That's what I hear when scanning in Los Angeles:

Lots of traffic control and other related activities, presumably at construction sites, and Wal-Mart on Green Dot.

Some personal and Spanish language on MURS 1-3

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Licensed by rule is the same as CB, correct?  No physical license issued, cost or application?  Just assumed by use?

My interpretation of the ‘licensed by rule’ rule is that you are licensed to operate in a LBR service only when you abide by the rules. If the rules for a service require the use of certified equipment and one does use such equipment then they are not licensed to use the service frequencies, thus not licensed.


Michael
WRHS965
KE8PLM
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  • 2 months later...
On 7/31/2020 at 7:08 AM, gortex2 said:

I use MURS alot. Both in NY and now in VA I rarely hear anyone on it. Granted I am in the country. Its an excellent option especially when FRS/GMRS may be active in a certain area.

I also use MURS a lot in the woods, excellent range.

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  • 2 months later...

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