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ebtksutton

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So I have been looking and trying to find something that would work for my needs. I know almost nothing about the topic so please someone chime in and educate me.

My needs are for having communication on a ranch that is just under 500 acres. I need to be able to communicate with people that potentially could be 9 miles away but not as likely. I have been researching GMRS band and have decided to purchased

BAOFENG BF-888S Two Way Radio (Pack of 6)
Off of Amazon. I already paid for my license on the FCC to operate under.

Now my questions are what are the best channels to use on GMRS and could someone explain why one would be better than another. Like I said I’m just getting into this and plan on moving up to a “full blown” HAM license later but need to get going now. Will this work?


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Rellgar

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I believe it will work for your needs. You may want to upgrade the antennas from what they came with.
 

ebtksutton

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Cool deal, if your knowledgeable in the area...can you point me in the right direction to obtain the correct antennas?


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ebtksutton

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Mostly flat, but filled with trees so there are obstructions...so in conjunction with upgraded antennas I’m looking into repeaters...trying to decide if I should get this one and if it will be strong enough to project the sound to all reaches.


https://midlandusa.com/product/mxt400-micromobile-2-way-radio/

I am still planning on getting one (actually 3, one per truck) but it will be over a couple months time since they are so much each.


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eireguy

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I would think that 40w would cover it . Having said that , in my opinon , a repeater would be the way to go w the 888s . I have the 5 watt version of the midland and like it alot . If you want a base station or repeater antenna i would look up the ed fong gmrs antenna . He makes good stuff and it dosent cost an arm and a leg . With all radios tho height is might . The taller you can get your antenna the further the signal will go . Good luck .
 

ebtksutton

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That’s great info, yeah I’m ignorant in the area of comms...but consider myself fairly smart so I pick up on stuff pretty quick....I got on

https://mygmrs.com/map/#/

to see what was in my area and well there is not...soooo that means I need to set up my own repeater.

If you know of a link that will help learn about that let me know...I just learned that you can set up certain tones (or whatever that if another person isn’t dialed in with that tone, on that channel) they can’t hear you? I know that it’s open channels so anyone can hear you...not worries about that but being able to not potentially step on others toes that would be nice.


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eireguy

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This is an article about ham but its all the same with a gmrs set up . There are pre-made all in one repeaters and there are two hand held radio repeaters . The hand held ones tend to run hot if you use them for an extended amount of time at once . But they are alot cheaper and more of a diy kind of thing. Radiorefrence.com is another good site to poke around on. https://survivalistprepper.net/ham-radio-basics-simplex-vs-repeaters/
 

eireguy

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Heres a video about a small , basic simplex repeater with 2 radios . Theres all kinds of these with prices all over the place. I ve never used any so i suggest doing alot of research before you buy .
 

eireguy

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Heres a 3 radio repeater set up . The good thing about this one is you can use a bf888 to reach it w 2 ( ? ) watts and it would re-broadcast it w 25 watts . I will say I'm not sure if the kt 8900 is "type accepted " by the fcc for gmrs . But no body would know unless you told them .
 
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eireguy

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I should say that i know just enough about this to get into trouble w someone who actually does . So if you decide to use a ham radio w gmrs radio repeater make sure all the tones match between them .
 

ebtksutton

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Haha honesty! Yeah I know very little about the topic, and really trying to get caught up on the subject now especially considering what’s taking place in the world right now. Originally I wanted to set things up simply for “work” but it may have a far stronger purpose in the very near future [emoji15] I would love to find someone local to teach me (the HAM guys I know locally...I can’t stand due to past issues, outside of radio talk) so I have been watching, reading, researching as much as possible on YouTube...but never know if they are blowing smoke or not. Only can try it and see for myself!

Gonna watch all of these links now to see what else I can soak up! Thanks a million!


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Tommy H

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Mostly flat, but filled with trees so there are obstructions...so in conjunction with upgraded antennas I’m looking into repeaters...trying to decide if I should get this one and if it will be strong enough to project the sound to all reaches.


MXT400 MicroMobile®Two-Way Radio | Midland Radio

I am still planning on getting one (actually 3, one per truck) but it will be over a couple months time since they are so much each.


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Repeaters are permissible on the General Mobile Radio Service frequencies but it will only do you any good if you have a high spot from which the repeaters antenna can be seen from most of the property. A good repeater located on a good sight will provide you with pretty good service. Repeaters aren't cheap and they are not a do it yourself project unless you are very radio savvy. There is free software available on the internet that will let you predict how much height and effective radiated power it will take to cover your ranch. GMRS is Ultra High Frequency (UHF) spectrum It has pretty good penetration of forested land for short distances, such as folks working a short ways apart but out of shouting range, but for longer distances it is pretty much line of sight. That is were a Repeater on a high point can really shine.

Tommy H
 

Jim_K7JLJ

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There are simpler ways of extending your range on 2M/70CM, a full on repeater is not practical in grid-down but having a mobile repeater is cheap and easy.

Here is my answer to the problem, but I live next to a hill that is the highest point in the area and can walk to the repeater on my AO patrol and change batteries. Home > My X-Band Repeater Setup

If you need to leave it on high ground then you will need a solar setup and be able to limit it's access to strangers.

Another thing is to keep it CTSS squelched and restricted to minimal traffic so it's not found with a local scanner on "near hit" mode.
 
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