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Comm Radios

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TrojanMan60

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#4,739
Has anyone seen any good deals on walkie talkies or other short wave radio coms systems? Trying to find a way to stay connected to my buddies while plowing through the woods?
 

Tyler

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BaoFeng UV-5R MK4 8W High Power... https://www.amazon.com/dp/B072HXQ5GG/?tag=tacoma3g-20

Not sure if you’re willing to use ham, but since the masses have pretty much moved to ham, this is what I use now and it’s awesome.

I have a few accessories for quality of life:

Authentic Genuine Nagoya NA-771... https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KC4PWQQ/?tag=tacoma3g-20

BAOFENG Speaker MIC for BAOFENG... https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00BYMKKT4/?tag=tacoma3g-20

BaoFeng BF-F8HP, BF-F8+, UV-5R... https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KZ6VGUW/?tag=tacoma3g-20


Did you want it to specifically be a normal walkie-talkie?
 
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TrojanMan60

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#4,739
I've been debating whether to go with a ham or walkie. If I'm being honest, I know they're different, but I don't know how. If there's something I can use on the trails as well as just listen to chatter on the highway, that would be awesome! Something with range would be cool too, I've heard CBs are very limited there.
 

Tyler

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I've been debating whether to go with a ham or walkie. If I'm being honest, I know they're different, but I don't know how. If there's something I can use on the trails as well as just listen to chatter on the highway, that would be awesome! Something with range would be cool too, I've heard CBs are very limited there.
CBs are very simple but are kind of getting retired in the 4x4 community. A lot of people still use them, but they probably also have a ham too, because everyone seems to be realizing ham is better. I would just skip the CB at this point.

To put it simply:

The walkie is kind of like a handheld CB with shorter range. And again, if you’re in a group that wants to use ham, you wouldn’t be able to communicate with them. I have never really seen “serious” folks using walkies for off-roading. I’m not saying it’s a dumb idea though. It would work if that’s what your friends agree on. But your range would be pretty limited.

Ham is like a walkie on steroids. You technically need a license to use them, but if you’re using it just while you’re on the trail with your friends, and on a channel no one else is on, you won’t get in trouble. A ham would be handheld and there would be no antenna mounted to your truck, unlike the CB. The range and audio quality will be superb compared to the other two options. And I personally think you will find more groups requiring ham than either of the other two.

I don’t recommend listening to others’ channels while on the highway, or even using the ham at all with your group while on the highway. You could run into a channel dedicated to some type of official use and then you might find yourself in trouble. It’s probably unlikely, and we have used ours on the highway just to pass information to the group quickly, but it’s always done in moderation.
 

sdsponger

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If you want to stay in the walkie world, a set of MURS radios would be good. The great thing about the BaoFeng radios is that they can do HAM, GMRS, FRS and MURS. I've used MURS freqs and PL/CTCSS codes with great performance. The PL/CTCSS codes give you a bit of privacy but you still might pick up other transmits.
 

Nayrb64

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Bryan
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#5,441
CBs are very simple but are kind of getting retired in the 4x4 community. A lot of people still use them, but they probably also have a ham too, because everyone seems to be realizing ham is better. I would just skip the CB at this point.

To put it simply:

The walkie is kind of like a handheld CB with shorter range. And again, if you’re in a group that wants to use ham, you wouldn’t be able to communicate with them. I have never really seen “serious” folks using walkies for off-roading. I’m not saying it’s a dumb idea though. It would work if that’s what your friends agree on. But your range would be pretty limited.

Ham is like a walkie on steroids. You technically need a license to use them, but if you’re using it just while you’re on the trail with your friends, and on a channel no one else is on, you won’t get in trouble. A ham would be handheld and there would be no antenna mounted to your truck, unlike the CB. The range and audio quality will be superb compared to the other two options. And I personally think you will find more groups requiring ham than either of the other two.

I don’t recommend listening to others’ channels while on the highway, or even using the ham at all with your group while on the highway. You could run into a channel dedicated to some type of official use and then you might find yourself in trouble. It’s probably unlikely, and we have used ours on the highway just to pass information to the group quickly, but it’s always done in moderation.
As a General Class licensed Amateur Radio Operator, it is my duty to advise everyone that it is illegal to use the licensed frequencies without an amateur radio operator license. To recommend that anyone use it without the license is ill-advised. Yes, the ham band 144-146MHz bands do travel further than the CB, but you are still required to get a license per the FCC Part 97. You can search for the closest Volunteer Examiner (VE) test session in your area and find plenty of test material online. You are required to have at least a Technicians Class Operator license to operate the on the 2 meter band frequencies. The test is $15 and good for 10 years.
 

Tyler

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As a General Class licensed Amateur Radio Operator, it is my duty to advise everyone that it is illegal to use the licensed frequencies without an amateur radio operator license. To recommend that anyone use it without the license is ill-advised. Yes, the ham band 144-146MHz bands do travel further than the CB, but you are still required to get a license per the FCC Part 97. You can search for the closest Volunteer Examiner (VE) test session in your area and find plenty of test material online. You are required to have at least a Technicians Class Operator license to operate the on the 2 meter band frequencies. The test is $15 and good for 10 years.
Correction noted. I'll refer your exact info to anyone asking in the future.
 

3cent.Taco

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As a General Class licensed Amateur Radio Operator, it is my duty to advise everyone that it is illegal to use the licensed frequencies without an amateur radio operator license. To recommend that anyone use it without the license is ill-advised. Yes, the ham band 144-146MHz bands do travel further than the CB, but you are still required to get a license per the FCC Part 97. You can search for the closest Volunteer Examiner (VE) test session in your area and find plenty of test material online. You are required to have at least a Technicians Class Operator license to operate the on the 2 meter band frequencies. The test is $15 and good for 10 years.
I was told if you're in an emergency situation, you technically do not need the license to communicate on the radio. Is this true? Just wanting to get some clarification.
 

Nayrb64

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I was told if you're in an emergency situation, you technically do not need the license to communicate on the radio. Is this true? Just wanting to get some clarification.
Technically, you are required to have the license to use the frequencies. However, I would use any method at my disposal to seek help in a life threatening emergency.
 

DeusExMachina

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I have a couple Baofengs configured to GMRS frequencies for emergencies. It's still not legal due to the Baofeng operating at 4 watts but an emergency is an emergency. If you're going to go deep on radio, get licensed.
If you want something simple or don't want to get licensed, or use with people who aren't licensed, I've heard good things about Rocky Talkies.
 
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