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Repeater question


stockjock
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I recently obtained my GMRS license and a Pofung P15-UV, which is an interesting new GMRS handheld radio that I believe is made by Baofeng.  Looks almost exactly like the Radioddity GM-30, but the key layout is a bit different.  So not sure if it's a GM-30 on the outside and something different on the inside or essentially the same radio, albeit with a slightly different keyboard layout.  Let me know if you know.

I'm in the San Diego area and have not been able to locate or use a repeater.  Looks like we don't have many to begin with, which is surprising as we're a good-sized city, but it seems many/all of them require permission.  I did request permission from 3, but have not heard back.

Is there another way to find repeaters to use?  Also, in terms of the CTCSS and DCS codes, do they need to match up with the repeater's codes each time?  Is it necessary to input those for transmit and also receive codes?  I've been involved with radio for many decades, especially shortwave, but this is new to me.

Thank you in advance.

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That is (holding down only the LED button) only to read the firmware version installed

Hold down both to update the firmware 

when reading/writing codeplug, do not hold down any buttons when turning on the radio

so far SO glad you turned me on to this HT!

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Here's another question.  I found some info on a repeater (not sure I can hit it) and it shows a DLP code of D245 (no letter after that code).  When I program my radio, there is an option under DLP for D245N and D245I, but I don't see just D245.  Anyone knows what the difference is or how to properly input their code/tone?

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On 8/31/2021 at 10:10 AM, MichaelLAX said:

If it were me, I would go up on the repeater and ask permission there and if they are testy, tell them you wrote and no reply.

Hey MichaelLAX, first thanks for the assistances earlier...you be hearing from me soon! Secondly, what is the process for "getting permission"? Do we have to track someone down, write a letter, make a call? How would one go up on a repeater? Lastly, I think I read joining a club would be helpful, true? Any in the San Fernando/ Santa Clarita area that you know of? Sorry, didn't mean to hijack the thread, hope no one is offended.

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7 hours ago, Papatree said:

Hey MichaelLAX, first thanks for the assistances earlier...you be hearing from me soon! Secondly, what is the process for "getting permission"? Do we have to track someone down, write a letter, make a call? How would one go up on a repeater? Lastly, I think I read joining a club would be helpful, true? Any in the San Fernando/ Santa Clarita area that you know of? Sorry, didn't mean to hijack the thread, hope no one is offended.

No one is offended if knowledge is passed along, especially to a new member to our community!

I was glad to help out.

Johnny Corona, who owns the VNC700 Santa Clarita (Oat Mt) repeater, responded to my email.

He told me that it is currently off the air for upgrades.

So you may be hungering for others to talk to in the meantime.  I suggest you put a GMRS antenna on your roof and increase the range of your Radioddity GM-30 and use its scanning feature to seek out others to talk to.

Or, study up and get your Technician Ham Radio License and use the 446.82 Santa Clarita Repeater. It seemed to be off the air as I drove over to Valencia yesterday, but it is administered by Bill, KJ6EO and has a great bunch of people that use it (and listen to 101.5 FM, his LP FM station)

As for permission, my attitude is that until I am asked to leave a repeater by its administrator for acceptable reasons, I use it, once I find it.  

Clubs would be good, and I'll let others chime in with information about GMRS clubs. 

I am a member of the PAPA Ham Radio System and listen to their Nets often.  Try PAPAsys.com and tune to PAPA_1 at 446.58 on Oat Mt. and have a listen.

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IF it is a listed repeater you should be able to request access from this site under the particular repeater. If its not listed and you can find the call sign you can contact them via FCC info. Last resort would be to get on the repeater and ask. Not all repeaters are open. I have one of 6 that are open for use.

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On 8/31/2021 at 9:58 AM, stockjock said:

I'm in the San Diego area and have not been able to locate or use a repeater...

So, Mitzvah, here on myGMRS (a/k/a DietXanadu on YouTube) got frustrated with his Anytone AT-779UV (even with my helpful tips) and met me last week to give it to me as a present!  How kind was that?!?

So now with 18 watts in the shack up to my tri-band Comet on the roof, I am able to communicate cleanly with the  West-facing Chatsworth Peak repeater into Eastern Ventura County and the CREST repeater on Santiago Peak into San Diego and parts south!  

We should try a scheduled chat some time. Send me another email with "stockjock" in the subject, so I will be able to find your info again in the future.

One of the helpful members of CREST gave me this additional information for repeaters for YOU to try:

RED Repeater 650 88.5

Coronado (Downtown) Repeater 550 210.7 (travel tone of 141.3)

Let me know how those work out for you and our lovely P15UV's!

I put my Diamond 771 on my P15 last night and was able to cleanly get into my usual local repeaters from my easy chair.  

I continue to be impressed with this $28  5 watt clone of the Radioddity GM-30 HT!

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Now that I've had GMRS set up for a bit, one thing I've noted is that it is really quiet.

I'm in the San Diego area and can hit a number of local repeaters, but it seems that there's basically close to zero activity on GMRS.  It's not as if I have the need or time to do a lot of chatting, but I was surprised at just how quiet it is.  I can scan channels for a day and hear essentially nothing, or close to it.

Is this pretty typical?

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4 minutes ago, stockjock said:

It's not as if I have the need or time to do a lot of chatting

And so it is with many (most?) other GMRS operators. A lot does depend on the area one lives in. Here in NW Indiana we are blessed with no fewer than eight (yes, all of 'em) repeaters easily reachable by mobile or base, and in my area at least three are reachable by HT as well.

At least three of them have weekly nets, and many are busiest in the evening hours when folks are at home with nothing better to do... 😋

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On 10/21/2021 at 12:01 PM, MichaelLAX said:

Plenty of activity here in the metropolitan Los Angeles area!

On 725: maybe too much! 🤣

Still dead in and around San Diego.  Barely turn the thing on, as I was going full days without hearing a thing on any channel.

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7 hours ago, MichaelLAX said:

I noticed another San Diego area GMRS user posted recently that he was hearing crickets!

In 48-72 hours, I typically hear zero conversations.  Maybe someone keying for a sec, but that's about it.

Guess we're just not all that chatty.

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6 hours ago, MichaelLAX said:

Get your Tech Ham License and come join the:

PAPA System

Plenty of coverage from Southern California and Las Vegas and a chatty and informative crowd!

Doubt I'll do that, but you never know.  One thing is for sure, GMRS in my part of San Diego is pretty nearly dead.

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If you don’t mind me asking...what is it you want or expect from GMRS ? And I don’t ask that to be a smart ass, I am honestly trying to learn what you are looking to get from GMRS. I don’t think your original question was  answered, although there were a lot of helpful technical suggestions as to why you may not be receiving a signal on your radio. And the recent suggestion about getting an amateur radio license may be a valid suggestion for you depending upon your answers.

I think there is a perception that GMRS is an alternative to ham radio, and that it is preferable for some since there is no test required. But if you get a GMRS license, expecting ham radio-lite, you may be disappointed. 

I understand GMRS has become a “thing”, and that is due to all the inexpensive Chinese radios that have saturated the market, and all the “reviews” of new GMRS radios by YouTube “influencers” (or “shills” as I call them...”some people”...”some people”) , and the threatened reduced licensing fee...

but what brought you to GMRS? 

What did you expect to hear?

and how did you expect to use GMRS?

Perhaps the answer to these questions will actually help you define what you are looking for, and where to find it.

 

 

 

 

 

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13 hours ago, WRAM370 said:

I understand GMRS has become a “thing”, and that is due to all the inexpensive Chinese radios that have saturated the market, and all the “reviews” of new GMRS radios by YouTube “influencers” (or “shills” as I call them...”some people”...”some people”) , and the threatened reduced licensing fee...

You say that as if it is a bad thing?!?

Reviews present information and information gives people the ability to select and choose an appropriate radio for now and maybe for later too!

What's wrong with that?

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On 1/24/2022 at 5:49 PM, WRAM370 said:

If you don’t mind me asking...what is it you want or expect from GMRS ? And I don’t ask that to be a smart ass, I am honestly trying to learn what you are looking to get from GMRS. I don’t think your original question was  answered, although there were a lot of helpful technical suggestions as to why you may not be receiving a signal on your radio. And the recent suggestion about getting an amateur radio license may be a valid suggestion for you depending upon your answers.

I think there is a perception that GMRS is an alternative to ham radio, and that it is preferable for some since there is no test required. But if you get a GMRS license, expecting ham radio-lite, you may be disappointed. 

I understand GMRS has become a “thing”, and that is due to all the inexpensive Chinese radios that have saturated the market, and all the “reviews” of new GMRS radios by YouTube “influencers” (or “shills” as I call them...”some people”...”some people”) , and the threatened reduced licensing fee...

but what brought you to GMRS? 

What did you expect to hear?

and how did you expect to use GMRS?

Perhaps the answer to these questions will actually help you define what you are looking for, and where to find it.

 

 

 

 

 

I expected to hear something other than silence for days on end.  Not a big deal, as I don't have much skin in the game.  But surprised that it's dead, in my area at least.

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I believe that @stockjockhas posted previously that he was given a GMRS HT by Amazon for his personal use and for his review posted on Amazon.

He gave a good review especially based upon its price vs. features and his frustration is lack repeater usage in the San Diego area.

I don't know exactly where he lives, but I am surprised he cannot hit the CREST repeater on Santiago Peak, which has a dedicated user base.

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On 2/14/2022 at 6:37 AM, MichaelLAX said:

I believe that @stockjockhas posted previously that he was given a GMRS HT by Amazon for his personal use and for his review posted on Amazon.

He gave a good review especially based upon its price vs. features and his frustration is lack repeater usage in the San Diego area.

I don't know exactly where he lives, but I am surprised he cannot hit the CREST repeater on Santiago Peak, which has a dedicated user base.

I can hit several repeaters in my area (north east San Diego city), but they are extraordinarily quiet.

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On 9/20/2021 at 3:54 PM, stockjock said:

Here's another question.  I found some info on a repeater (not sure I can hit it) and it shows a DLP code of D245 (no letter after that code).  When I program my radio, there is an option under DLP for D245N and D245I, but I don't see just D245.  Anyone knows what the difference is or how to properly input their code/tone?

I vs N.

First off N means Normal and I is for inverted.

the DPL/DCSS/ or what ever they are calling it has two 'modes' one being normal the other being inverted.

Not all radios support the Inverted DPL, but many do.  From what I remember they did the inversion thing to double the number of DPL codes that could be used. 

If a repeater had just D245 and no I or mention of inverted, inversion, reverse I would say that is gonna be D245N in your radio.  Easy way to find out is program two channels, one with the D245N the other with D245I and one should work. 

But as others have mentioned,,, don't be surprised if someone asks you to leave depending on where you found your information.  If it's on THIS web site and it lists the repeater as OPEN it most likely is indeed open.  If you found it on radio reference or some other scanner web site or similar, it may or may NOT be open.  And this site doen't have every GMRS repeater listed on it.  There are other GMRS sites and groups.  Most should be welcoming to new members but they also may not be so friendly.  There honestly no personality test for obtaining a license, I know this for sure because I got mine, and I would have failed that part miserably, just ask some of the members on here. 

 

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