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Programming TK-8180K with CHIRP


ctrout
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I just ordered a TK-8180K that should be here by the end of the month.  I already have the programming cable for use with other radios.  Before I ordered any software, I checked in CHIRP and to my surprise, the 8180 is in the dropdown.  I have a couple of questions though.  First of all, has anyone ever tried programming this radio using CHIRP?  Next, I need to be able to program wide and narrow band per channel because I will also be using the radio on the local emergency frequencies.  The radio is loaded with firmware version 1.22.  Will Chirp allow me to select wide/narrow per channel or will I need to purchase the KPG software suite from Kenwood with the wide license?

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Great radio!  I am using it in my UTV.  I personally wouldn't use Chirp, especially for the initial setup.  The Kenwood software is much easier to use and allows you to set up multiple zones and gives you much more freedom in what you can program.  I have 3 or 4 zones set up, all for GMRS though, to make it easy to change channels to various bubble-pack radio brands, such as the Midlands and Cobras preprogrammed channels.

 

Chirp is great for easily moving channels up and down.

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Have programmed Kenwood TK-3170 and 880,  I now have 2 8180s pre-programmed from used-radios (16 channels) but will get in add some repeaters and other goodies just the same.  As stated above, lots of options with the free Kenwood software.  Mine will go in my SxS and my Cherokee XJ.  Had a blast yesterday wheeling with a gang; handed out HT and have them convinced to ditch the CB and go GMRS, especially with a few open repeaters in the area.

 

Tried Chirp for the first time today and struggled.  More novice errors than anything I suppose.

 

Good luck

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I suppose that since I'm still getting recommendations I should update the thread.  I have gotten the Kenwood software and I've programmed the UHF radio with all of our emergency frequencies and frequency pairs.  I like the radio so much that I decided to also order the VHF 7170 as well for our VHF repeaters in the area and it is literally the twin of the 8180.  The only difference besides the band is that I couldn't find the 30w version in the condition that I wanted so I had to spend the premium to get the 50w version.  We had to go into the mountains and rescue a stranded snowmobiler this weekend who spent 24 hours stuck in a bowl full of powder he couldn't get out of and the TK-8180 performed flawlessly in maintaining comms with the county dispatch office until I arrived on scene to take the role of SAR Command at the incident where we use Motorola CDM 1250s.  We are seriously considering Kenwoods now so we can do our own programming.  This is being talked about even more now because another mountain search and rescue unit in the neighboring county has just switched over to NX radios.

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On 1/18/2021 at 7:40 PM, WRAK968 said:

Your better off using the KPG software, Check your PM's, I'll be messaging shortly.

If you have a source for that, I'd love to know about it also. Currently Chirping an 860 and an 860G. Considering picking up an 8180 as well. I think the 860 is a doorstop, it sounds out if alignment. Anyway, Chirp works, but I'd like the additional capabilities of the KW software. 

RC

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