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New to GMRS


Guest Bohang
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Guest Bohang

Hi everyone! I am new to GMRS. I have a lots of questions that I want to ask you guys. I hope I can get some help.

 

 

​1) I just bought a Baofeng UV-5R. Can I operate this radio by holding a GMRS license?(I saw a video on YouTube says that the UV-5R is a ham radio, it required a ham radio license to operate. T or F)

 

 

2) If I just want to chat with my friend on simplex, what frequency that I can use and do I have to speak English only or I can speak other language. Also do I have to say my call sigh every time I call ? Can I set a PL tone on simplex that only me and my friend can transmit?

 

​3) I knew if I want to get a longer range I need a repeater to help me out, but can I use a repeater with a GMRS license? if I can, when I make the call do I just talk to the repeater or some random people in the repeater range? Is the repeater re-transmit automatically?  

 

 

​4) If I am using a repeater to contact my friend, do I have to speak English only (I know call sign must be English)? when we chat by using the repeater, is anybody else can hear us?

 

​5) If some one is using the repeater can I still use it?

 

These are the questions so far that I can think about. I really really  new to GMRS, I did a lot of research online but still not get the idea. I really need someone to help me out and guide me going on the right path. I will really appreciate it for all help? Thanks!

 

 

Thanks for all your replies

Seven

WQXK764

 

 

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Hi Seven,

 

Welcome! Let's see if I can answer those questions for you. Others may chime in and lend their expertise as well.

 

1. This is a Ham radio, and is not certified for use on GMRS frequencies. According to the FCC Rules (Part 95), any radio used on GMRS frequencies must carry Part 95A certification. However, as you may find if you do your own research, it's very hard to find a currently-produced Part 95A radio which is repeater capable. It's kind of a niche and most manufacturers don't bother with it anymore. For us, that presents us with a dilemma. Either we are stuck using very old and obsolete equipment, or we could use Part 90 radios (virtually all commercial-grade radios for business or public safety use) which adheres to stricter technical requirements. I don't recommend or advocate it, but many people have decided that a Part 90 radio, when operated properly, is just as good or even better. Many of the Baofeng radios and their clones now carry Part 90 certification when the user is unable to change the frequency on the fly. So the short answer is, yes it's a Ham radio. The longer answer is, it may have Part 90 certification and would then perform similarly to a Part 95A radio, so you would be using it at your own risk. The argument has been made with the FCC but to date no answer has been given.

 

2. For simplex, you can use any GMRS frequency that is not a repeater input (467.xxx MHz). You can speak in another language, but you are required to state your callsign in English every 15 minutes during a conversation, and at the end of the conversation according to the FCC rules. Yes, you can set a PL tone on simplex for you and your friend. It will not provide true privacy, but would prevent you two from hearing other people on the same channel unless they happen to be using the same tone.

 

3. Yes, your GMRS license allows you to use a GMRS repeater. However, repeaters are privately owned and you need the permission of the owner. Some repeaters are posted on this site as "open" which means any licensed user can use it without permission (just follow the rules), while some are private or require explicit permission. The listing for the repeater on this website should indicate which, and you can contact the owner through this site. The repeater will retransmit your audio over a wider area so others can hear you who would not normally be able to hear your radio directly. It's not private, and anyone else who has the repeater programmed in their radio could talk back to you.

 

4. English isn't required, but you may want to talk to the repeater owner and give them a heads-up that you intend to speak in another language but will be complying with the FCC rules. Some people are alarmed by not knowing what someone is saying on their repeater, so it doesn't hurt to state that up front to avoid confusion. Nothing in GMRS is private, so others would be able to hear you if they're within range of the repeater (typically 15-30 miles, perhaps more)

 

5. Only one person may transmit at a time, so if there's a conversation going on already, you'll have to wait your turn. If you have something to add to the conversation, you can jump in and introduce yourself. Most people are happy to talk with you, so don't be shy about it. Just don't interrupt another conversation with your own.

 

Good luck, and let me know if you need any further clarification!

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Rich, I was somewhat concerned that my new Bridgecom BCR-40U repeater only has a Part 95 tag on the rear of the cabinet. So I called the owner and spoke with him about my concern. He explained to me that when applying for certification, if one specifically request Part 90 certification, when granted it automatically carries additional certifications that do not have to be enumerated on the sticker.

 

See: https://apps.fcc.gov/oetcf/eas/reports/EquipmentRulesList.cfm and scan through all the Parts for the class "TNB"

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 101

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 22

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 22G

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 22H

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 25

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 27

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 74

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 78

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 80

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 87

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.203(j)(4)

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.203(j)(5)

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.203(j)(7)

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.203(j)(8)

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.210

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.210(e)

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.217

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.217( b )

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.217( c )

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.221

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.259

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.265

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90.265( b )

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90T

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 90Y

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 95A

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 95C

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 95D

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 95F

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 95G

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 95H

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 95I

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 95J

TNB Licensed Non-Broadcast Station Transmitter 95L

Portables such as the BaoFeng UV-5R (all variants) that are Part 90 certified are listed as TNF type and carry similar concurrent and automatic certifications.
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N4gix

 

It's early so forgive me. Are you saying that a Part 90 cert is automatically carried to 95? Or is that visa versa?

 

If it's 90 is good for 95 then maybe all the commotion on 95 only radios can finally be put to rest. That old Mac vs PC thing  ;)

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Rich, I was somewhat concerned that my new Bridgecom BCR-40U repeater only has a Part 95 tag on the rear of the cabinet. So I called the owner and spoke with him about my concern. He explained to me that when applying for certification, if one specifically request Part 90 certification, when granted it automatically carries additional certifications that do not have to be enumerated on the sticker.

 

See: https://apps.fcc.gov/oetcf/eas/reports/EquipmentRulesList.cfm and scan through all the Parts for the class "TNB"

Portables such as the BaoFeng UV-5R (all variants) that are Part 90 certified are listed as TNF type and carry similar concurrent and automatic certifications.

 

Bill, as you know, there is a huge discussion on this topic over on RR. At least one person has a written inquiry in to the FCC for clarification. I am wondering if the gent at Bridgecom could actually furnish written confirmation from the FCC on this.

 

What concerns me here is the same reasoning being applied in the RR discussion: Manufacturers submit type acceptance applications for radios and include which parts they want covered. If you look at enough grants, you see that radios are quite often type accepted in several Parts of the rules, and some including Part 95. I have several different Motorola radios here, one is Type Accepted for Parts 90 and 95a, and others are Part 90 only. The transmitter specs that matter for Type Acceptance are all the same in all of the radios, but only one is actually Part 95a. This suggests to me that the manufacturer did not bother to apply for Part 95a and therefore the radio is not Part 95a.

 

Like others, I am hoping that clarification from the FCC comes through.

 

The kicker in all of this is that Part 90 now requires 12.5 channel spacing while 95a is still 25. That's an unknown at this time.

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Bill, as you know, there is a huge discussion on this topic over on RR. At least one person has a written inquiry in to the FCC for clarification. I am wondering if the gent at Bridgecom could actually furnish written confirmation from the FCC on this.

I am quite fully aware of the discussion at RR.com since I'm one of the participants. smile.png What particularly disturbs me at the moment though is the total silence from the nice folks at Bridgecom. They have always been very quick and responsive over the past few months, but now that I've asked a direct question and requested a written reply...

 

...total silence. What concerns me particularly is that they are advertising the BCR-40U as a commercial, amateur, and GMRS repeater. This give the appearance of "false advertising" since the official certification from the FCC stipulates only Part 90 compliance. Which means of course no Part 97 for ham use, and no Part 95(a) for GMRS use.

 

I have two Ritron RRA-452 repeaters here in my shop that are both Part 90 and 95(a) certified, so I have ample evidence as to what the certification for the BCR-40U should look like, and it doesn't!

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I am quite fully aware of the discussion at RR.com since I'm one of the participants. smile.png What particularly disturbs me at the moment though is the total silence from the nice folks at Bridgecom. They have always been very quick and responsive over the past few months, but now that I've asked a direct question and requested a written reply...

 

...total silence. What concerns me particularly is that they are advertising the BCR-40U as a commercial, amateur, and GMRS repeater. This give the appearance of "false advertising" since the official certification from the FCC stipulates only Part 90 compliance. Which means of course no Part 97 for ham use, and no Part 95(a) for GMRS use.

 

I have two Ritron RRA-452 repeaters here in my shop that are both Part 90 and 95(a) certified, so I have ample evidence as to what the certification for the BCR-40U should look like, and it doesn't!

 

Bill, there are no type acceptances for Part 97 to my knowledge. Unlike most of the other services, the onus is on the licensee/operator to prevent spurious emissions, keep the unit on frequency, etc. When you and I were young, many hams built their own gear from scratch or modified other gear. That's still allowed today, but with the vast proliferation of ready made equipment in all the bands, there's very little home brew anymore. Thus almost anything can utilized in the hams bands. Some hams prefer commercial gear and I am one of them. All of my Motorola 2M and 70CM portables and mobiles are totally legal for Part 97 use even though they are only type accepted for Parts 22, 74, and 90.

 

I do share your concern about the lack of response from Bridgecom. If they had something in writing on hand, one would think that they would pass it on to you right away.

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Bill, as you know, there is a huge discussion on this topic over on RR. At least one person has a written inquiry in to the FCC for clarification. I am wondering if the gent at Bridgecom could actually furnish written confirmation from the FCC on this.

 

What concerns me here is the same reasoning being applied in the RR discussion: Manufacturers submit type acceptance applications for radios and include which parts they want covered. If you look at enough grants, you see that radios are quite often type accepted in several Parts of the rules, and some including Part 95. I have several different Motorola radios here, one is Type Accepted for Parts 90 and 95a, and others are Part 90 only. The transmitter specs that matter for Type Acceptance are all the same in all of the radios, but only one is actually Part 95a. This suggests to me that the manufacturer did not bother to apply for Part 95a and therefore the radio is not Part 95a.

 

Like others, I am hoping that clarification from the FCC comes through.

 

The kicker in all of this is that Part 90 now requires 12.5 channel spacing while 95a is still 25. That's an unknown at this time.

 

My GMRS repeater is a Motorola MTR2000, Part 90 and widely used by HAM's around the world. I welcome the results of the person that has written an inquiry to the FCC for clarification as i am guessing more then 50% of the radios and repeaters in use for GMRS are part 90.

 

That's just my $0.02

 

Corey

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