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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought a pair of Cobra PR-560WX 1 watt radios at Walmart for $49 w/charger and ni-clad rechargables early this spring for pit use on my home range. I had in mind to buy the Motorola "Talk-Abouts" but a geek CB'ing buddy of mine said to buy the Cobra's instead, so I did.

They are the first set of FRS/GMRS radio's I have used and I'm pretty darn impressed with them. They are rated for 6 miles and actually work well at that distance on the high plains. They are clear, have good using features, pretty easy on batteries, 22 channels with 38 "privacy" codes on each channel. They even have an emergency weather channel reciever that gives me a running weather report. They come with an earphone and have an hands free feature, makes it easy to have the earphone under muffs and still communicate with the "pits" without breaking position.

I still can't believe they where only $49 a pair and folks still think trading with China is a bad idea.

I had my wife marking my target one afternoon and she decided they would be just the thing for horse shows. Now we have 4 of them and two chargers LOL. We now find ourselves using them around the place and outdoors, they are proving rugged enough.

I have since found that Cobra has a set of 3 watt FRS/GMRS radios that are rated at 10 miles for $90 a pair w/chrger ect. The ones I have are powered by 4 AAA's, the 3 watt radio's run on AA's. I'm set up good with rechargable AA's and a solar charger. It would be good to stick with AA's if I can for SHTF considerations.

Anyone using the more powerfull of these radio's, keeping thier limitations in mind these radio's have some obvious tactical applications.

I'm pretty green with these radio's in general, what should I know about using these things? What about Motorola's, Whats avaliable out there?

Teuf,
 

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We got turned on to the Garmin rino's.

They are FRS/GRS, plus they include a garmin GPS, and have a true scramble mode, in addition to the normal 38 interference codes found on frs radios.

They also have a really nice feature, one you can enable or disable, where your GPS coordinates are transmitted to other radios in your group. (you can name each radio and decide which ones to include or not.)

The position of all the other radios can be displayed on the radio. You can navigate to any of them.

We will do things like simply key the mike twice to update our positions, without saying a word.

This makes it very easy to coordinate movement between people without having to see them or say anything.

Down side, of course, is that you are open to easedropping and having your position being seen by others.

But, so far, they've been awesome and easy to use.

The rino's are pricy, however.

But they are cheaper than buying a radio AND a decent gps unit.

:devil:
 

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I have a pair of Motorola GMRS that we use at hunting camp. They are rated for 5 miles and work well as long as the transmissions are line of sight. In dense piney woods, transmission is degraded to 2 - 3 miles but even cell phones have a hard time in there. Of the talkies I've examined, the Motorolas seem a little better built but Cobra has an excellent reputation so I wouldn't change without a reason. Like you, we have found that they are excellent on the rifle range. I think that they offer a great tactical advantage at reasonable expense as long as you realize that they're not totally secure.

I agree that rechargable AA's are the way to go in the little radios. The plug-in rechargers don't seem to last too long with me.

The FRS radio's strongest advantage is for keeping up with the kids at the amusement park or at a family outing; just not enough range.

RIKA
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Command and Control in the offence and defence is a very "localized" affair

Raider said:
The FRS radio's strongest advantage is for keeping up with the kids at the amusement park or at a family outing; just not enough range.

RIKA
Having a 20 mile range is unessesary and could be a problem in some circumstances IMO, I'm not sure I really want anything that transmits past 5 miles. Having voice com in a small group and a good SOP would be a huge force multiplier during a fight, even if you where all in a 1/4 mile circle. Such as cordinating with an OP providing over-watch or a LP at night. Also handy cordinating between "hunter" groups.

My concern with the more powerful units is also battery life. The Cobra's I have now are pretty easy on batteries, you can go for several hours of back and forth, on the range, on one charge. It would stand to reason, but I'm not sure, more powerfull radio's are going to be harder on batteries.

Teuf,
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Something else comes to mind, say Raider and I are at the biker ralley next month in Stugis watching the BB King concert and she gets captured by greasy, rouge bikers.

Are her "privacy" codes in the Motorlas the same as the "privacy" codes in my Cobra's, will we be able to communicate between different brands?

Teuf,
 

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Yes, the codes are the same. there's also an overlap of a few of the FRS and GMRS channels - I have a list of which ones somewhere. (still in the middle of moving, so I'd have to look for them)

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Teufelhund said:
Are her "privacy" codes in the Motorlas the same as the "privacy" codes in my Cobra's, will we be able to communicate between different brands?

Teuf,
That is a question worth checking out.

Re: the transmit power. I've seen GMRS radios that have both low and high power transmit levels - Just can't remember the brand, darn it. Maybe we can do some research.

RIKA
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I've got the overlapping channels right here for my Cobra's, 1-7 are shared FRS/GRMS, 8-14 FRS only, 15-22 GMRS only. My radios automaticaly go to low power on the FRS only channels. My squelch control filters out weak signals, but can be turned off to extend range.

Teuf,
 

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We also like to take ours with us

when we go on trips with family or friends where we have to take two cars. It's pretty neat to be able to communicate with the other car.

We went on a trip with another family last year and the adults got started singing theme songs and tunes from old TV shows ... Green Acres, Gomer Pyle, Gilligan's Island, Beverly Hillbillys, Hogans Heros ... it went on for a couple of hours. It was totally flipping out the kids. They had no clue where all those songs were coming from. They just sat there in stunned silence. :)
 

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I've got one pair of Cobra FRS 120's and 2-pair of the Cobra FRS/GMRS 4000 series that are 3-WATT ones. Never got the full range around here but we're talking about steep hollows and valleys in the Ozarks.
 

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Raider said:
That is a question worth checking out.

Re: the transmit power. I've seen GMRS radios that have both low and high power transmit levels - Just can't remember the brand, darn it. Maybe we can do some research.

RIKA
My Cobra 4000s can be set for Hi/Med/Low on any channel. I imagine Motorola has a model or two that can be adjusted like these.
 

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Beginning some research on handheld Tac Radios

Most things survival I have at least a clue, except coms. So I'm trying to get smart and then pick up a couple of radios for family/local freinds for SHTF tactical applications.

Anyone have the latest and greatest they'd like to share in this catagory?

I've been looking at TriSquare's TSX 3000 Tactical Radio Kit:

http://www.trisquare.us/exrs.htm

http://www.spyville.com/tactical-radio-kit-complete.html

It looks like a good deal for a poorman's tactical radio. What other kinds of radios can it communicate with? IS this in the FRS/GMRS catagory? Anyone have any experiences or other options?

Aslan's Garmin rino's have set me to thinking too...
 

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I case someone else looks up this thread...

I found the TSX 3000 are not on the same freqs as FRS/GMRS radios. They can basically talk to other 900 mhz/33 cm radios.

Don't believe the hype they can be scanned/located/intruded on/jammed

I'm still looking to get them. They are useful for utility communications in the woods and against a disorganized opposition (SHTF despirate refugees/mauraders).

I'm considering a scanner, dual antennas for locating, a ham licence and for informational purposes plans for a jammer...
 

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Unalist - The trisquare TSX300 is what we use at work. Only had them a couple months now, but so far the guys are impressed. I bought the kits including rechargeable batteries and hand-free vox earpieces and the guys like them.

You set up a group (ABC Alarm Company), and individuals in that group (Matthew, Mark, Luke), and assign each radio to an individual user in the group. Then you can call the group as a whole, or a particular person in the group. Bought one pair initially to try out, and ordered a second pair earlier this week.

I like the fact that they're NOT frs/gmrs. Everybody and his brother uses frs/gmrs for both personal and business use (legal or not), and these get us away from crosstalk & other people's conversations on jobsites.

Again, only have used one pair so far, and only for a couple months, but so far so good.
 

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Thanks John,

What kind of range do you get? I've heard 2-4 miles is typical line of site. Have you experienced that? I'd like to know how well does it work in woods or with a ridge in the way?
 

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Don't know outdoors range. We use them inside buildings, mostly assisted living centers, schools, etc. Probably never more than a few hundred yards, but there's a lot of potential interference (power circuits, metal framing & doors, concrete between floors, etc) in those few hundred yards.
 
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