Anyone so new they don't even have a radio yet?

Started by White Tiger, September 27, 2012, 03:30:54 am

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Frosty

ARTS is Yaesu's Automatic Range Transponder System, you can configure it on two radios to indicate when your "in range" or "out of range", but each radio xmits at regular intervals to determine it, so not something you want to leave on.   Handy for working out your max range during a Sunday drive without having to call the other station repeatedly.  The FT2900 manual is here:  www.w7awh.com/manuals/ft2900manual.pdf 

MARS/CAP:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_Affiliate_Radio_System
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civil_Air_Patrol

The mod opens the radio up for xmit on 136-172MHz, which includes marine, MURS, business band, and many public safety freqs, none of which are legal to xmit on with this radio (at any power level) if I'm not mistaken, except in an emergency of course.  radioreference.com is a great site for finding what frequenices are in use in your area. 

Geek

I'll take ARTS as a "bonus feature".  :-)  I can see driving all over the place to figure out what will work.

Geek

I have a new question on Repeaters.  I see directories online that show repeaters all over the area.  Most of the lists seem to have a column with the heading "PL" with what looks like a frequency listed.  What does "PL" stand for?

White Tiger

February 20, 2013, 03:10:14 am #123 Last Edit: February 20, 2013, 03:13:17 am by White Tiger
Quote from: Geek on February 20, 2013, 02:59:43 am
I have a new question on Repeaters.  I see directories online that show repeaters all over the area.  Most of the lists seem to have a column with the heading "PL" with what looks like a frequency listed.  What does "PL" stand for?
I think it stands for "Private Line" - it refers to a way to activate a specially coded CTCSS tone to initiate a repeater dedicated to a group that owns or controls access to a specific repeater or groups of repeaters...see, it kind of acts like a phone number. If you know the code, you're "in" and can make contact. Mostly they're published by city/state - I have an app on my iPhone that lists all of the repeaters and plots them on a map with your location in the center a it also gives all the pertinent info to make contact with and via the repeaters in your area.

To help you sort it out ( trust me, I know what youre going through, As I tried to sort it all out myself...just before I lost interest...but then I do have a terrible case of A.D.D.) to save you some time - let me add this link and excerpt:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continuous_Tone-Coded_Squelch_System

"CTCSS is an analog system. A later Digital-Coded Squelch (DCS) system was developed by Motorola under the trademarked name Digital Private Line (DPL). General Electric responded with the same system under the name of Digital Channel Guard (DCG). The use of digital squelch on a channel that has existing tone squelch users precludes the use of the 131.8 and 136.5 Hz tones as the digital bit rate is 134.4 bits per second and the decoders set to those two tones will sense an intermittent signal (referred to in the two-way field as "falsing" the decoder). This and other technical and historical topics is covered in this article: <http://www.repeater-builder.com/tech-info/ctcss/ctcss-overview.html>.";
If you're looking for me, you're probably looking in the wrong place.

RadioRay

"PL" or sub-audible tones are a funny thing.  Basically, a radio is programmed to transmit a tone lower than you will hear through a matching radio BUT that tone activated all radios similarly programmed.  The reason for this is so that on a crowded channel the radio with it's "PL" set, will hear ONLY those who are transmitting using the same "PL" tone.  Groups of radios can use PL so that they do not have to listen to people outside of their group.

Here's the complication: people get it backwards, thinking that if their PL is set to some odd number that nobody else can hear their conversations (because they do not hear anyone else).  Not true.  This is like my idiot little sister declaring that she was invisible when her eyes were closed. . .  ha ha

So - to only hear your own guys - set the PLs to the same number and turn them ON.  However, you will not hear anyone else.


de RadioRay ..._ ._
"When we cannot do the good we would, we must be ready to do the good we can."  ~ Matthew Henry

Geek

So on my soon to be acquired 2m radio, if I am tuned to the repeater is there another control for the PL tone?

cockpitbob

February 20, 2013, 08:57:37 am #126 Last Edit: February 20, 2013, 09:01:12 am by cockpitbob
Quote from: Geek on February 20, 2013, 08:34:52 am
So on my soon to be acquired 2m radio, if I am tuned to the repeater is there another control for the PL tone?
Typically you enter a text name for the repeater, the frequency and the tone.

By far the best thing to do with an HT is to get the programming cable and software.  Often the programming software can be found as free-ware.  As one guy put it, an HT is a computer with a 2" monitor and 16 keys on the keyboard.  They can be really tough to program manually.  Programming them with the computer is easy.

To work a repeater there are really 3 things that need to be set, but 1 is usually automatically set:  Frequency, offset direction and PL tone.  When you transmit to a 2M repeater it will retransmit your signal on a frequency 600KHz higher or lower, depending.  Higher is a + offset and lower is a - offset.  Wheather the offset is positive or negative depends on the frequency and is standardized so almost all radios just know if you are in repeater mode (as opposed to simplex) it will automatically set the offset amount and direction.  So, all you have to do is set the repeater's frequency and PL tone.

Again, get the software.  On my HT (Yaesu FT-60), I can have up to 10 pages (banks) in memory.  I have bank-1 full of local 2M repeaters.  Bank-2 has local 70cm repeaters.  Bank-3 is repeaters down near Boston for when I travel down there.  I have a bank for listening to local police and fire frequencies (ours haven't gone secure trunking digital yet).  Etc.  You just can't do that much programming without using a computer.

White Tiger

Quote from: cockpitbob on February 20, 2013, 08:57:37 am
Quote from: Geek on February 20, 2013, 08:34:52 am
So on my soon to be acquired 2m radio, if I am tuned to the repeater is there another control for the PL tone?
Typically you enter a text name for the repeater, the frequency and the tone.

By far the best thing to do with an HT is to get the programming cable and software.  Often the programming software can be found as free-ware.  As one guy put it, an HT is a computer with a 2" monitor and 16 keys on the keyboard.  They can be really tough to program manually.  Programming them with the computer is easy.

To work a repeater there are really 3 things that need to be set, but 1 is usually automatically set:  Frequency, offset direction and PL tone.  When you transmit to a 2M repeater it will retransmit your signal on a frequency 600KHz higher or lower, depending.  Higher is a + offset and lower is a - offset.  Wheather the offset is positive or negative depends on the frequency and is standardized so almost all radios just know if you are in repeater mode (as opposed to simplex) it will automatically set the offset amount and direction.  So, all you have to do is set the repeater's frequency and PL tone.

Again, get the software.  On my HT (Yaesu FT-60), I can have up to 10 pages (banks) in memory.  I have bank-1 full of local 2M repeaters.  Bank-2 has local 70cm repeaters.  Bank-3 is repeaters down near Boston for when I travel down there.  I have a bank for local police and fire frequencies (ours haven't gone secure trunking digital yet).  Etc.  You just can't do that much programming without using a computer.
bob, thanks for that explanation - I think I learned something!

If you get a sudden power outage, will it knock the radio's memory settings out?

Why don't people simply broadcast in simplex on 2m? Is it just to lock out traffic? If so, why do they publish a list of repeaters with all this information?

Help me understand what looks like logical inconsistency - which confuses me about 2m operation...
If you're looking for me, you're probably looking in the wrong place.

raybiker73

Here's a pretty basic explanation of how and why repeaters do what they do:

http://www.hamuniverse.com/repeater.html

Geek

Programming sounds like a necessity to use repeaters.  Given the fact they may disappear in a disaster, it sounds like the real trick may be to select frequencies for family contact that will avoid repeaters if they are operating.

cockpitbob

Quote from: Geek on February 20, 2013, 09:44:04 am
Programming sounds like a necessity to use repeaters.  Given the fact they may disappear in a disaster, it sounds like the real trick may be to select frequencies for family contact that will avoid repeaters if they are operating.
Exactly.
And if you have a bugout plan that involves radios you had better have a copy of the maual, or at least the programming section, packed in a ziplock bag.

raybiker73

Quote from: cockpitbob on February 20, 2013, 10:03:25 am
Exactly.
And if you have a bugout plan that involves radios you had better have a copy of the maual, or at least the programming section, packed in a ziplock bag.


Hallelujah, sing it brother! My little Yaesu HT is intuitive enough when it comes to programming, but the Baofeng in my get-home bag and the Kenwood in my Jeep rank somewhere between brain surgery and development of the warp drive in complexity.

It's easy enough to jot down the essentials on a card and get it laminated, but I've found the "Nifty Manuals" to be fantastic. A lot of information packed into a little pocketable space. They're a worthwhile investment. I have one for each of my radios.

http://www.niftyaccessories.com/index.html

White Tiger

Quote from: raybiker73 on February 20, 2013, 10:10:57 am
Quote from: cockpitbob on February 20, 2013, 10:03:25 am
Exactly.
And if you have a bugout plan that involves radios you had better have a copy of the maual, or at least the programming section, packed in a ziplock bag.


Hallelujah, sing it brother! My little Yaesu HT is intuitive enough when it comes to programming, but the Baofeng in my get-home bag and the Kenwood in my Jeep rank somewhere between brain surgery and development of the warp drive in complexity.

It's easy enough to jot down the essentials on a card and get it laminated, but I've found the "Nifty Manuals" to be fantastic. A lot of information packed into a little pocketable space. They're a worthwhile investment. I have one for each of my radios.

http://www.niftyaccessories.com/index.html
thanks for this link ray - I placed an order for a couple of those myself...although they do not have one for the "vintage" radios. I sent a note to them via email link on their site - and got a reply back that they do not have plans to update quick reference guides for the older model radios - as they did not have the respurces to update old manuals that he never formatted for originally. I told him the interest on these radios on secondary market is pretty high - but they still have no plans....(darn).

Oh well, guess I will have to use his manuals as the format for my radios...hey...wait a minute...
If you're looking for me, you're probably looking in the wrong place.

Geek

What I have done for other important documents is scan them and then I can put them on a thumb drive, Kindle, phone, etc.  A thumb drive then goes in each BOB along with paper copies of driver's licenses, etc.  I would do the same for any new radios as well.

RadioRay

I made e-copies with passport and other docs for foreign travel. This also allowed my personal representative in the USA to assist me in replacing docs, credit cards and toher 'things' incase I were stranded in some odd place, with little more than an embassy provided e-mail terminal or local cyber-cafe' to establish my bonafides. The little , flat memory cards are also a good choice, because of the postage stamp size and ability to be carried in a wallet, shoe insole & etc. You can probably store much inside of the drive on a comon cellphone as well - preferably encrypted.


>Ray
"When we cannot do the good we would, we must be ready to do the good we can."  ~ Matthew Henry