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Radio communication questions

Discussion in 'Preparedness & Survival' started by FrankG, Apr 1, 2013.

  1. FrankG

    FrankG Up on a hill in S.Central Oregun New Member

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    I read the recent cb thread and was wondering if someone could explain differance in the SSB and 2meter-10meter HAM .
    I know nothing of them . I have ran a cb off and on through the years while woods running .
    I would like to get something with more range, mobil to home and also be able to listen to chatter across the country to keep informed .
    I have heard the HAM license is easier to get now.Is a license needed for SSB ?

    Thanks in advance .
     
  2. AMProducts

    AMProducts Maple Valley, WA Jerk, Ammo Manufacturer Silver Supporter

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    SSB is short for "single side band" it's a transmission mode, just like AM or FM. The difference is it reduces the bandwidth and then characteristically increases carrier power (think of laser vs flashlight).

    CB is AM, and limited to 4 watts of transmitter power (12 in SSB), 2m and 10m ham are limited to 1500W with a license, however most rigs will push between 50 and 100Watts.

    CB is essentially a high frequency band, and is about 27mhz, 10m is 28-29mhz, 2m ham is 144-148mhz. CB is "channelized" meaning it has 40 specific frequencies you can use. Ham can tune to any frequency it likes, and use it at max power provided you are not causing any harmful interference to anyone else. Also, many ham rigs are offered in "multi-mode" which means they can transmit AM, FM, SSB (upper and lower sideband), and CW (morse code). However this is very dependent on the type of rig you get. A common vehicle 2m rig might be FM only, or it might have AM. Usually the more expensive radios will have AM, SSB, CW and be what's called an "all mode" rig.

    The Technician license exam is fairly easy to pass, think of it as a "learners permit" for the airwaves. It focuses on a little bit of technical detail, but the main reason for it is to make sure you know the regs and are not transmitting out of band, and interfering with communications of other users. Very near the ham bands are lots of public safety, so out of band transmission could interfere with a fire company trying to put out a house fire.
     
  3. FrankG

    FrankG Up on a hill in S.Central Oregun New Member

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    Thank you for the info it clears up a lot !

    Which is the most commanly used HAM , the 2m or 10m radio ?
     
  4. AMProducts

    AMProducts Maple Valley, WA Jerk, Ammo Manufacturer Silver Supporter

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    The most common ham bands are 2m (144-148) and 70cm (420-450mhz), 1.2m (222-225) is less common, but is still out there especially in areas where there are lots of repeaters (southern california has a very active 220 community because every possible split for 2m and 70cm is used). 6m (50-54mhz) is the lowest band you will find on a handheld, and is actually one of my favorite bands due to the small package size (Yaesu VX-7) and it's very good propagation characteristics (I can talk very long distances, and there are not a lot of users on this band). 900mhz and 1.2ghz are starting to get popular as prices come down on the equipment.

    As a technician (entry level amateur radio license) you have very limited privs on the 10m band, you are limited to CW and SSB. The best way to have things make sense, technician is >30mhz privs, and general and extra are <30mhz.

    Here's the amateur radio band plan, which doesn't go into specifics about what the bands are for, but may give you a better idea of how the whole thing shakes out:

    http://www.arrl.org/files/file/Hambands_color.pdf
     
  5. FrankG

    FrankG Up on a hill in S.Central Oregun New Member

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    WoW !! Looks pretty complicated ! Looking at that chart it looks like a 2M radio 144mhz is over limit for a tech ? Looking on ebay those look to be most comman units , with 2M capabilities .
     
  6. parallax

    parallax eugene, or-gun Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Hi FrankG, you need to know that most vhf/uhf( 2m and 70cm) ham radios go thru repeaters, which can extend there range anywhere from 50 to 200 miles. which is really cool for traveling or if you are out in the woods or desert, where cell receptionis unreliable. some repeaters are tied into the internet which can give you infinite range to anywhere on the planet. repeaters typically are located on mountain tops and run off of batteries and solar chargers. there are hundreds of repeaters here in Oregon and many that can be reached from your location.. from eugene Oregon I can hit repeaters in bend, lapine, Corvallis,florence,roseburg, and even Portland. the ham test is not to bad for tech license and gives you voice access to vhf and uhf and hf 28.300 thru 28.500 mhz. also tech license gives you morse code on many of the hf bands.
     
  7. FrankG

    FrankG Up on a hill in S.Central Oregun New Member

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    Hey , thx for the input ! Its a bit confusing yet :) So can a Tech run on a 2m radio ? Ive seen some on ebay .Id like to find one , get it set up and play around finding traffic to listen to and get an idea of range here while trying to get a license .
    Ive looked on craiglist but havent seen anything .
     
  8. AMProducts

    AMProducts Maple Valley, WA Jerk, Ammo Manufacturer Silver Supporter

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    A tech can run anything from 30mhz up (in order... 6m/50-54mhz, 2m/144-148mhz, 1.2m/222-225mhz, 33cm/902-928mhz, 23cm/1.27-1.295ghz). By the way... remember these, they will probably be on the test :)

    As far as what radios to look for... icom IC2200H (2m high power mobile) is a great radio, yaesu also makes a wide variety of 2m/440 mobiles.