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  #1  
Old 10-12-2019, 09:52 AM
eschafer eschafer is offline
 
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Default need recommendations for RELIABLE two way radios

I need a set of radios... my biggest desires are reliability and being able to tune out all beeps, squeaks, birps, clicks and squelches... want just a radio that I can make silent until someone is trying to talk to me..... range of 24 miles is not necessary... price is less important if they are quality radios... Any recommendations would be appreciated.. Thanks...
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  #2  
Old 10-12-2019, 10:33 AM
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Dean2 Dean2 is offline
 
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There are lots that you can make completely silent, Motorola being the top of the list. They work well on lakes or open flat ground. None of them work worth poop if there is any amount of bush or terrain in the way. You will be lucky to get half to 3/4s of a mile out of any radio in the bush. UHF marine type radios are a bit better but even they aren't great. You phone is a far better option, with location sharing turned on. You can text for easier than voice calling. If there is no cell service and you want reliable communication, Sat phones are the only real choice.
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Old 10-12-2019, 01:52 PM
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Big Bull Big Bull is offline
 
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I bought a Baofeng UV-5R VHF radio to use for work as the radios in our snowcats were so crappy. It is programable, and I have many other useful channels programmed into it that I can use in case of an emergency. I also programmed the FMS channels into it that the small walkie talkies use, and on our fly-in moose hunt a few weeks ago, I was talking to another hunter on a different lake, about 5km away. These radios are very popular with the sledder crowd, and can be bought even cheaper in 10 packs. They can be programmed so that you don't get all of the unnecessary beeps and sounds.
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Old 10-12-2019, 02:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Bull View Post
I bought a Baofeng UV-5R VHF radio to use for work as the radios in our snowcats were so crappy. It is programable, and I have many other useful channels programmed into it that I can use in case of an emergency. I also programmed the FMS channels into it that the small walkie talkies use, and on our fly-in moose hunt a few weeks ago, I was talking to another hunter on a different lake, about 5km away. These radios are very popular with the sledder crowd, and can be bought even cheaper in 10 packs. They can be programmed so that you don't get all of the unnecessary beeps and sounds.
Did you get the Gen 2 4 watt or the Gen 3 8 Watt and did you get it in Canada or order it from the States. Since you are working Snowcats, what is your realistic range in hilly wooded cover. Most radios are pretty much line of sight, within reason. I know the commercial grade Motorolas we used on job sites performed much better than the consumer versions but even they weren't great if you were out on well sites and separated by a couple of miles with heavy bush.
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Old 10-12-2019, 02:59 PM
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Big Bull Big Bull is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean2 View Post
Did you get the Gen 2 4 watt or the Gen 3 8 Watt and did you get it in Canada or order it from the States. Since you are working Snowcats, what is your realistic range in hilly wooded cover. Most radios are pretty much line of sight, within reason. I know the commercial grade Motorolas we used on job sites performed much better than the consumer versions but even they weren't great if you were out on well sites and separated by a couple of miles with heavy bush.
I bought it from Canada Ammo in Vancouver - I thought it was 5 watts, not sure what generation. We have a repeater at the top of the mountain, so I haven't found any dead spots in any of the terrain that we work in. I can talk to the guys on the mountain from my living room, 10km away in direct line of sight, without triggering the repeater.
I initially paid $40 for the radio and charger(the good programming cable also cost another $40), $12 for an external mike, and $20 for a larger extra battery.
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Old 10-12-2019, 05:46 PM
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CanuckShooter CanuckShooter is offline
 
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We messed around with all those little radios...waste of money as the range is terrible. Now we use marine vhf from cabelas...
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  #7  
Old 10-12-2019, 07:10 PM
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Originally Posted by CanuckShooter View Post
We messed around with all those little radios...waste of money as the range is terrible. Now we use marine vhf from cabelas...
We tried those too. Ours were Unidens. They were crystal clear and great range on large lakes like Slave. The voices were clearer and less garbled in the bush but the range in Bush was only slightly better. U seem happy with yours. What make and model and what kind of range are u getting in Bush.
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Old 10-12-2019, 09:34 PM
bigwolf bigwolf is offline
 
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We use the Baofeng's. Sledding or hunting. Never had a partner out of range. Even when on the other side of the mountain. They are cheap, and the battery will last all weekend with no problems.
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Old 10-12-2019, 11:13 PM
eschafer eschafer is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CanuckShooter View Post
We messed around with all those little radios...waste of money as the range is terrible. Now we use marine vhf from cabelas...
which ones from Cabelas? need little more info.... thanks
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  #10  
Old 10-13-2019, 12:31 PM
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Sitting Bull Sitting Bull is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigwolf View Post
We use the Baofeng's. Sledding or hunting. Never had a partner out of range. Even when on the other side of the mountain. They are cheap, and the battery will last all weekend with no problems.
Do you need a license for this type of radio? I have been interested in this style but thought it fell under short wave or something like that.
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Old 10-13-2019, 03:05 PM
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CanuckShooter CanuckShooter is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean2 View Post
We tried those too. Ours were Unidens. They were crystal clear and great range on large lakes like Slave. The voices were clearer and less garbled in the bush but the range in Bush was only slightly better. U seem happy with yours. What make and model and what kind of range are u getting in Bush.

Standard Horizon, Marine, Floating Tranceiver HX290. It's hard to determine range as the topography makes a big difference. I can tell you the range puts the little radios to shame...on some hunts we easily communicate over 10k with ease.
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Old 10-13-2019, 03:05 PM
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CanuckShooter CanuckShooter is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschafer View Post
which ones from Cabelas? need little more info.... thanks
See post right above this one.
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  #13  
Old 10-14-2019, 03:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CanuckShooter View Post
Standard Horizon, Marine, Floating Tranceiver HX290. It's hard to determine range as the topography makes a big difference. I can tell you the range puts the little radios to shame...on some hunts we easily communicate over 10k with ease.
Thanks for info but it appears Cabelas no longer sells those. All they have now is Uniden. I have ordered some of the 8 watt Baofeng since Big Bull really liked his 5 watt version. I ordered mine out of the States since Canada ammo didn't list any radios, just the accessories and the Canadian Distributor doesn't seem to carry anything but accessories. They are about 60 U.S. each so even three of them aren't a lot of money.

The Baofengs are dual band UHF and VHF. VHF is better for distance while UHF goes through obstacles better so this way will get to try channels on both bands and see what works best in heavy bush.We shall see how those work out. Was a good thread, learned some new stuff. Since most of the radios on GMRS, like you get a t Costco are limited to .5 to 1 watt, these got to be a bunch better just on power output alone.
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  #14  
Old 10-14-2019, 08:01 PM
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Jerry D Jerry D is offline
 
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There a guy that sells radios at one of our trade shows for outdoor sales yards...

I know he said one type has all the static and another type doesn't.

Analogue have the static. Digital ones are clearer and newer tech.

Last edited by Jerry D; 10-14-2019 at 08:08 PM.
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  #15  
Old 10-14-2019, 09:17 PM
Prairiekid Prairiekid is offline
 
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I have the Motorola I think T600, they are silent. The range seems pretty good to me. They can vibrate if you just want to get your partners attention. I have never tried to use them more than 5-8km apart from each other but that seemed to work fine.
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  #16  
Old 10-14-2019, 09:53 PM
jcrayford jcrayford is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschafer View Post
I need a set of radios... my biggest desires are reliability and being able to tune out all beeps, squeaks, birps, clicks and squelches... want just a radio that I can make silent until someone is trying to talk to me..... range of 24 miles is not necessary... price is less important if they are quality radios... Any recommendations would be appreciated.. Thanks...
Motorola has a setting in them - I think is called "quiet". It virtually blocks all other non-Motorola incoming signals so that you only hear conversations on your channel/sub-channel from Motorola brand radios. Works good, but if you're in a group that has mixed brands, you need to turn it off to hear the entire group.

J.
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