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Guest Bob
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Hi

 

New to this and would like more information. I live in Rhode Island. There are a few GMRS repeaters here but some are inactive. What kind of radios do you guys use? Can you buy them at regular department stores or do you order them on line? Thanks....Bob

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Well I'm a newbie too and really don't know the true full answer to that but:

for the repeater usage I think you'll need more than 5 watts of power that a Handheld might put out.  

I don't know of any stores per say that sell the mobile units with 15 or more watts so I purchased mine online from Midway.

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Welcome to GMRS Bob.

 

You will find lots of good information here in the forum. Enjoy.

 

I encourage to you stay legal with whatever radio choice you make. Look for radios that are FCC Type 95e certified if you are purchasing a new radio. And follow the rules when using it.

 

I personally use the Wouxun KG-805G handheld. I use one in my vehicle with an external antenna and I also carry one. I have owned them for about six months and would purchase them again. It is a great easy to use starter radio and is more flexible than others on the market. I will step up when and if a new and better product emerges on the market that is 95e certified.

 

BTW, I just completed a 45 minute chat session with 5 other folks just before seeing your message. I was using my handheld with a Nagoya 771G antenna. I was 26 miles from a local high-profile repeater.

 

Currently there are a limited radio choices on the market that comply with the new regulations. Consequently, some folks operate illegally. Some folks choose to purchase used but much higher quality and better performing commercial LMR radios.

 

Midland sells mobile radios for vehicles that can do simplex and repeater communications. They do not however offer a repeater-capable handheld for some reason.

 

BTech sells one handheld and one mobile model that are certified. They have some gross programming limitations however which has been a problem for some.

 

I imagine you will receive a variety of information from folks here.

 

Enjoy GMRS.

 

 

Michael

WRHS965

KE8PLM

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Online is the main source. To my knowledge, the only repeater capable radios likely to be found in stores are the midland mobiles, I know Walmart and home depot list them online. I don't know of any handhelds they make that are repeater capable

 

That said, do some reading, as they do have their own set of limitations (as most do).

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Hi

 

New to this and would like more information. I live in Rhode Island. There are a few GMRS repeaters here but some are inactive. What kind of radios do you guys use? Can you buy them at regular department stores or do you order them on line? Thanks....Bob

Most of the radios used by members are purchased online. What you end up with will depend on how you intend to use it. For a mobile installation (vehicle) you will probably end up with either a 25W or 45W unit. As far as efficiency, there isn't that much difference between 25 and 45W. It's in the antenna. The same can be said for a home or base unit which is usually a mobile attached to a power supply for the needed DC power. Base station antennas are different than those used for handheld or mobile stations. The Ed Fong antenna from edsantennas.com is a good inexpensive unit. Base station antennas also need to be as high up as you can get them as this affects the range more than power.

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Welcome Bob, I also have two KG-805G as a starter radio purchased from https://www.buytwowayradios.com/wouxun-kg-805g.html with the same Nagoya 771G antenna 15 inch.  I was coached by BTWR on my purchase and confirmed by mbrun from his many post.  Read all of mbrun post... they are good as gold as well as all the others who comment.  He has confirmed what I learned as a newbie since mid November getting my call signs.  Get your GMRS license and create an account and join the GMRS family.  Rhode Island is to cold for me... I lived in NJ, moved to FL and now in NC... we are called half backs.  

Jack

Welcome to GMRS Bob.

You will find lots of good information here in the forum. Enjoy.

I encourage to you stay legal with whatever radio choice you make. Look for radios that are FCC Type 95e certified if you are purchasing a new radio. And follow the rules when using it.

I personally use the Wouxun KG-805G handheld. I use one in my vehicle with an external antenna and I also carry one. I have owned them for about six months and would purchase them again. It is a great easy to use starter radio and is more flexible than others on the market. I will step up when and if a new and better product emerges on the market that is 95e certified.

BTW, I just completed a 45 minute chat session with 5 other folks just before seeing your message. I was using my handheld with a Nagoya 771G antenna. I was 26 miles from a local high-profile repeater.

Currently there are a limited radio choices on the market that comply with the new regulations. Consequently, some folks operate illegally. Some folks choose to purchase used but much higher quality and better performing commercial LMR radios.

Midland sells mobile radios for vehicles that can do simplex and repeater communications. They do not however offer a repeater-capable handheld for some reason.

BTech sells one handheld and one mobile model that are certified. They have some gross programming limitations however which has been a problem for some.

I imagine you will receive a variety of information from folks here.

Enjoy GMRS.


Michael
WRHS965
KE8PLM

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I encourage to you stay legal with whatever radio choice you make. Look for radios that are FCC Type 95e certified if you are purchasing a new radio. And follow the rules when using it.

Some of the older used commercial radios are FCC Type 95A certified, which was under the old rules. Those radios continue to retain their type certification under the new rules and are legal to use on GMRS. If you shop carefully and wait you can get some good deals. The programming cables are cheap, and the software, don't use Chirp, are easy to find on line usually for a free download with install key.

 

Personally I have used the following Kenwood hand held models:

 

TK-370G-1

TK-3170

TK-3140 (waiting on slow USPS mail for this one to arrive)

 

The commercial radios have a major advantage over the cheap sub $100 Chinese radios, the receiver sections are far better. As most people tend to discover when in a range fringe area the antenna and the receiver sensitivity and  selectivity makes all the difference.

 

https://www.ameradio.com/doc/Kenwood_TK-370G.pdf

 

https://pdfs.kenwoodproducts.com/9/TK-2170&3170Brochure.pdf

 

https://www.radiocommunicationsonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/kenwoodtk3140_brochure.pdf

 

Beware the radios come in several different "band splits" denoted by a model type or suffix number. Look at the brochures in the above links and scroll down to the last page. It's usually list under "General" in the detailed specifications.

 

I don't have a commercial mobile radios so I can't really speak about those.

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