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 > Reliable Walkie Talkie?

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nomad2013

coral springs

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Posted: 11/22/20 09:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Anybody have recommendations for reliable walkie talkies. I have tried Midland, and now I have Cobra from last year. Not real happy with either. I put new, out of the package, rechargeable batteries and charged them overnight. The next day the battery indicator was dropping with very limited use. Any suggestions?

ktmrfs

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Posted: 11/22/20 10:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If what you want is something better than the typical box store walkie talkie programmed for GMRS or FRS channels there are a couple of options.

Pick up a pair of Baofeng UV 5R 5W programmable units and a programming cable (ebay, amazon) and go to the chirp website to customize the radio. Many ham radio operators use these radios on ham channels as portable units,

Then program the radios to use digital keying so you won't need squelch and program them for GMRS and FRS channels along with the 5 MURS channels.

For a few more bucks you can get the rugged radios version of the same units that are much more robust, but more expensive. Rugged radios periodically puts their units on sale. Again, you'll need a programming cable and chirp website to program them.

We've used baofeng and rugged radio units for year with good luck. Available as accessories for both are larger battery packs, along with a plug in car charger unit and longer whip antennas.


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rdhetrick

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Posted: 11/22/20 10:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ktmrfs wrote:

If what you want is something better than the typical box store walkie talkie programmed for GMRS or FRS channels there are a couple of options.

Pick up a pair of Baofeng UV 5R 5W programmable units and a programming cable (ebay, amazon) and go to the chirp website to customize the radio. Many ham radio operators use these radios on ham channels as portable units,

Then program the radios to use digital keying so you won't need squelch and program them for GMRS and FRS channels along with the 5 MURS channels.

For a few more bucks you can get the rugged radios version of the same units that are much more robust, but more expensive. Rugged radios periodically puts their units on sale. Again, you'll need a programming cable and chirp website to program them.

We've used baofeng and rugged radio units for year with good luck. Available as accessories for both are larger battery packs, along with a plug in car charger unit and longer whip antennas.


As a licensed HAM operator, I can say it possible to do what was suggested above, but it's NOT legal on the FRS frequencies. Hardware is ok on the GMRS requires licensing. MURS doesn't require licensing, but I'm not sure if the hardware is allowed.


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Lynnmor

Red Lion

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Posted: 11/22/20 11:12am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have used off brand batteries in cameras with little success, be sure that you have a known brand and they are not fakes. My Motorola walk i-talkies need charged after about 12 hours with little talking.





bgum

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Posted: 11/22/20 11:12am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The problem is a GMRS license costs $70 AND YOU WANT A BLISTER PACK RADIO TO TALK 5 OR MORE MILES (excuse caps). Get yourself a license and a good Midland handheld. Batteries don't last long due to size.

MikeDupont

TX

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Posted: 11/22/20 11:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MURS completely legal on the Baofeng 2m/70cm and knockoffs so long as you stay on the low power setting. Last time I looked anyway.
Mainly use them responsibly and no one will bother you.

I dont know how Midland and Cobra (who make fine products) can sleep at night with some of the absurd range claims they put on their FRS radio packaging.

bgum

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Posted: 11/22/20 11:22am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

What do you want use the radio for and where will it be located?

rrupert

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Posted: 11/22/20 11:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

One of your battery problems may be the voltage of the rechargeables. They typically are 1.2 volts fully charged vs. 1.5 volts for alkaline batteries. The voltage may be drawn down below a useful level for the radios in a short time after charging.


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rlw999

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Posted: 11/22/20 12:18pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MikeDupont wrote:

MURS completely legal on the Baofeng 2m/70cm and knockoffs so long as you stay on the low power setting. Last time I looked anyway.
Mainly use them responsibly and no one will bother you.

I dont know how Midland and Cobra (who make fine products) can sleep at night with some of the absurd range claims they put on their FRS radio packaging.


Unless the radio has FCC Part 95(j) acceptance, it's not legal for MURS. If it's capable of transmitting more than 2W on the MURS band (even if you can switch it to 2W manually), then it can't be type accepted for MURS.

But like you say, use them responsibly and it's unlikely that anyone will bother you. You're not 100% guaranteed to get away with it, I know some GMRS repeater operators in particular are protective of the GMRS bands and will track down unlicensed operators. You'd have more to fear if you were an Amateur radio operator since the FCC could yank your license *and* use your license status to prove that you should have known better and hit you with a large fine. As a HAM operator myself, I wouldn't risk it -- my FRS radios are type accepted, and since they are FRS/GMRS radios I'm licensed for GMRS use.


Here's the relevant FCC code sectioncode section for type certification:

Quote:

95.2761 MURS transmitter certification.

(a) Each MURS transmitter (a transmitter that operates or is intended to operate in MURS) must be certified in accordance with this subpart and part 2 of this chapter.

(b) A grant of equipment certification will not be issued for any MURS transmitter type that fails to comply with all of the applicable rules in this subpart.

(c) A grant of equipment certification will not be issued for MURS transmitters capable of operating under both this subpart (MURS) and under any other subparts of this chapter (except part 15).


RobWNY

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Posted: 11/22/20 12:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Why not just buy a couple of hand held CB radios.


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