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wa8yxm

Wherever I happen to park

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Posted: 07/18/20 06:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

"Beg to differ, 2mtr and 70CM CAN be far more "reliable" in an CLOSE emergency than HF, period."

I would agree with that but the key word which you were kind enough to highlight is CLOSE.

But if you are miles from the nearest repeater or another ham They don't work that well... By miles i mean like 50 or more in most case In some cases I've used repeater networks where I could be over an hour's drive from the tower and it was great. other systems 20 miles is out of range.

But for "Local" work. chat around the campground hey Honey Dinner's ready. kind of thing. Fantastic way better than the other options..

If you are in range of a repeater fantastic

But I was out in the desert with no hope of reaching a repeater or a cell tower when I first needed to call for a tow.


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Bumpyroad

Virginia

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Posted: 07/18/20 06:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

OkieGene wrote:

You can rent a satellite phone, and this option may work very well if you don't need to own one and will only be off the grid, so to speak, rarely.

that sounds like a plan for intermittent use.
bumpy





ktmrfs

Portland, Oregon

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Posted: 07/18/20 10:20am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you want the ability to communicate with emergency services ASAP and/or communicate with family or friends that have the ability to text then something like the garmin inreach may be a good choice for you. We have the inreach explorer. The advantage over spot is (a) the ability to have two way communication with whomever you are contacting, including the emergency services. and (b) better chance of quickly getting a signal out. Garmin uses iridium sats, which are not geosyncronous so you don't need a view of the southern sky.
Before the inreach I had spot, I never completely trusted it. Often in wooded areas it would take an hour or more to get a text out since it needs a view of the southern sky to get to a sat. and since is one way only I never knew for sure the text got out. And then I had two of them completely fail on me, replaced under warranty, but didn't give me much peace of mind.

We've used the inreach in europe, north/south america in the ocean and always been able to communicate via text to whomever we could text to. And it never has taken more than a minute or two to get the message out to a sat.

The inreach is less expensive than a sat phone, with similar capability.

The inreach (and spot) also allow real time tracking that you can allow others to see. We do this so our kids and contacts can see where we are and the tracking includes GPS co ordinants. Viewers can also use google earth with the tracking to see terrain maps, roadmaps or geographic maps to see your location.

* This post was edited 07/18/20 02:15pm by ktmrfs *


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Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 07/18/20 12:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wa8yxm wrote:

"Beg to differ, 2mtr and 70CM CAN be far more "reliable" in an CLOSE emergency than HF, period."

I would agree with that but the key word which you were kind enough to highlight is CLOSE.

But if you are miles from the nearest repeater or another ham They don't work that well... By miles i mean like 50 or more in most case In some cases I've used repeater networks where I could be over an hour's drive from the tower and it was great. other systems 20 miles is out of range.

But for "Local" work. chat around the campground hey Honey Dinner's ready. kind of thing. Fantastic way better than the other options..

If you are in range of a repeater fantastic

But I was out in the desert with no hope of reaching a repeater or a cell tower when I first needed to call for a tow.


If you are "out in a desert then just HOW can a "HF" rig help?

Sure, you can toss 1500W on HF out with a linear and wrap your signal halfway around the globe in the early evening or late morning when most HF bands are active..

But do you think that someone in Europe is going to be of help a little piddly ant (you) in billions of grains of in thousands of acres of sand hundreds of thousand miles from that poor sap in Europe?

The answer is no.

Your HF rig in this case IS just as "useless" as you claim with 2mtr/440.

The PROPER device in this case is to be prepared with the proper equipment and a Sat Phone most likely would be the absolute best choice with no cell coverage, no local Ham repeaters.

CBs, Ham, FRS/GMRS would be totally worthless in your "desert scene" unless you have a "buddy" system and have OTHER folks that you can keep in contact with.

If you are going to wonder into wilderness, the "buddy system" is a good idea, TELL a friend where you will be and how long you will be..

Never wonder alone, never wonder without TELLING someone where you will be, how long you will be and make plans with that person or persons to "check in" at regular intervals. If they do not hear from you within a specified time they can alert proper authorities quickly which may SAVE YOUR LIFE.

Backup commercial communications like cell phone or Sat phone and/or even carrying a rescue beacon designed for hikers. Those are real world better choices that are specifically designed for this use.

Personal Locator Beacons

ReneeG

Meridian, Idaho

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Posted: 07/18/20 02:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We are looking at the Garmin Inreach. We camp and Jeep enough during the year to warrant getting one. Service options including a month by month basis which works for us. We often don't invite family to come boondocking because we always head out ahead of them and with no reception in those areas, communicating our location is near impossible. With an Inreach, we can send them our coordinates and they can see where we are. We Jeep often on the backroads and never have reception. The Inreach will help us keep in touch as to our whereabouts and a line of communication should we break down or are injured.


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Wadcutter

IL

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Posted: 07/18/20 03:04pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gdetrailer wrote:


Sure, you can toss 1500W on HF out with a linear and wrap your signal halfway around the globe in the early evening or late morning when most HF bands are active..

Do you really work much HF? You do realize that 40m or 80m you can work a lot closer than "halfway around the globe". 10, 12, 17 haven't been too reliable the past couple of years but 40 is usually open somewhere 24/7 and in the evening 80 has been doing OK. Even during the worst of solar storms I've been working people on 40 and 80. And with those freqs the range can be from 100 to a few hundred miles, not quite the 'halfway around the globe" as you're making it sound.
If you have been a ham for a while, done more than get a Tech ticket, and not just one of those who memorized answers to questions you may have heard of Winlink. Winlink will get you email anywhere you can send an email over the internet. I packed in to some really remote locations in NWT, Yukon, BC, and AK. Never had a problem hit a Winlink gateway and getting emails back home and was doing it with 50W max.
As I mentioned previously, ham radio is just another tool. When you're out there in real remote locations it's about backing up your backup to your backup. You have a backup for everything or you have nothing.

* This post was edited 07/18/20 05:15pm by Wadcutter *


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rk911

DuPage County

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Posted: 07/18/20 03:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gdetrailer wrote:

...If you are "out in a desert then just HOW can a "HF" rig help?

Sure, you can toss 1500W on HF out with a linear and wrap your signal halfway around the globe in the early evening or late morning when most HF bands are active...


one doesn't need 1500-watts to either talk halfway around the world or try to summon help from Europe.

100-watts will do just fine into a quality and properly mounted and installed antenna in order to check into one of the various USA based 40-meter mobile nets. one example would be MidCARS (7258 khz). there are others. even when the net is not officially 'open' there are usually others monitoring it. and in a true emergency the 20-meter maritime mobile net would be another choice.


Rich
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wa8yxm

Wherever I happen to park

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Posted: 07/18/20 03:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gdetrailer wrote:



If you are "out in a desert then just HOW can a "HF" rig help?



There are many bands. Some are good for talking half way around the globe. some for one state over.

Read the link.. Now he was off shore but........d lubber if needed. that's what they do.

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 07/18/20 03:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The 1960s called and want their conversation back!
This is LOL. Hobby yes. 21st century communication? No.
Get a phone. If the phone don’t work and your worried, get a plb or a sat phone. Sat phones are expensive though.
Are you literally going where there are NO other people? In your RV? There’s about a 0% chance of that.
Now if you’re getting into the back country I understand, but anywhere you can have a ham radio plugged into your RV, you will encounter other people.

Unless you’re a hell of a lot more adventurous than me! Which I doubt.


"Yes Sir, Oct 10 1888, Those poor school children froze to death in their tracks. They did not even find them until Spring. Especially hard hit were the ones who had to trek uphill to school both ways, with no shoes." -Bert A.

ktmrfs

Portland, Oregon

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Posted: 07/18/20 04:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ReneeG wrote:

We are looking at the Garmin Inreach. We camp and Jeep enough during the year to warrant getting one. Service options including a month by month basis which works for us. We often don't invite family to come boondocking because we always head out ahead of them and with no reception in those areas, communicating our location is near impossible. With an Inreach, we can send them our coordinates and they can see where we are. We Jeep often on the backroads and never have reception. The Inreach will help us keep in touch as to our whereabouts and a line of communication should we break down or are injured.


We have the inreach. Bought it when it came out to replace the spot. We've used it in Europe, all over south america, the U.S. out in the ocean on cruises. We love it. Easy to text anyone who can get text messages, has the ability to store about 20 preprogrammed messages, a long list of contacts. Easy for people to text you as well. And if you go with GEOS and/or SARS worldwide rescue and return as well. Since I race off road and we travel all over the world GEOS family plan makes sense for us to emergency rescue or return to home in case of medical emergency if needed.

Inreach uses iridium sat's, so it's as good as a sat phone for communication. (well text only, no voice). The only downside is that like any Sat phone, they do NOT work well inside a building, even a trailer can be marginal. you want to be outside, tree's etc. aren't an issue but enclosed buildings are.

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