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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28, 2015 2:05 am 
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Wow, there is a lot of questions to be answered here!

First, 5 watts of RF of a given frequency from one radio will talk as far as 5 watts of RF from any radio on the same frequency, ALL other factors being equal. The differences come in receiver sensitivity, antennas, location, height and atmospheric conditions. When you are talking repeaters/bases, you are also talking about another radio in the loop, and that is how real range is achieved with handheld VHF-UHF radios. Nothing else will replace these.

As to the question of whether you should get VHF, UHF, or higher radios, that comes down to what you are going to use the radios for, and where. Remember, all radio frequency is part of the greater electromagnetic spectrum, SO, the lower you go in frequency the more RF acts like sound, and the higher the more it acts like light, easy right?

So, for use inside of buildings, where you want the signal to bounce around, use UHF+, for the great outdoors, and generally more range, VHF. So where will MOST of your usage occur?

Once you answer that question, it comes down to what you are going to use the radios for. It is impossible to beat the ham bands for more communications, as long as you are willing to NEVER use it for business, as this is illegal and will get you busted ASAP and two, willing to study and test to be a ham!

IF you are not, I would recommend either GMRS, MURS, or perhaps one of the other business services. But that is going to cost more and provide less coverage then Ham!

As to radios, I would get some used Motorolas and save your money. JT1000's can be had for $250 or less and are keypad or computer programmable. Old Maxtrac mobile/bases can be had for $100, or less!

I have to run off to bed, but let's talk more about this! : D

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28, 2015 2:12 am 
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Location: Hotlanta, GA, USA!
Rob wrote:
Nick, There is a local radio station here in the area that wants $25/month/line - So $50/month total. The radios I'd need would need to be $600/each = $1200 just in radios. That's a bit steep! Thanks!


Shawn wrote:
Lots of used equipment out there. ...


Shawn is right, don't get in too big a hurry here.... Please take a moment to answer my questions. As a reference I am a General Class Amateur radio operator and and hold an FCC General Radiotelephone license with RADAR endorsement. I bought and sold commercial gear for more then 15 years and also worked in various communications roles/consultancy for government and military.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28, 2015 6:34 am 
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We used Maxtrac's in the school buses.. They worked well.
We had about 125 mobile units that ranged from 35 to 55 watt.
The frequency was 31.2 mhz and depending on a few factors such as weather or deadspots we would get a range of 20 or 30 miles. That's in a very hilly western Pennsylvania.
We operated 2 remote stations about 1 mile apart They communicated to each other at 450mhz.
The remotes communicated to a base station that transmitted at the 31.2 frequency. The buses were transmit and receive at 31.2. No 450mhz in the mobiles.
I know that may be confusing, but why I typed it all out is this, With the uhf link, you can get a uhf handheld to use indoors that will communicate to the uhf base/repeater that transmits/repeats the uhf at vhf frequency for the long distance outdoor use. It gives the best of both worlds.
uhf being 450mhz and vhf being 31.2mhz in my case.
I am pretty sure the base was nothing more than two mobile units linked together. A 450mhz and a 31.2mhz.

I am sure you can find all of this equipment used for very reasonable prices.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28, 2015 8:43 am 
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[quote="Shawn"]
I am pretty sure the base was nothing more than two mobile units linked together. A 450mhz and a 31.2mhz.

Shawn this is exactly the function of a repeater….mobile unit transmits a 31.2 with a tone like 167.9 the repeater receives this and transmits it at 450 MHz

The above could be channel one…using a repeater… channel two could be simplex
Transmit and receive on the same frequency 450 MHZ to 450MHZ. Channel two could be used when you’re close to each other… car to car….

Nick


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2015 4:56 am 
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Location: Hotlanta, GA, USA!
You can get a lot closer in TX/RX frequency with the use of a duplexer...

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