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More HAM questions

Discussion in 'Ham Radio - CB - Trail Communications' started by PeteT, March 2, 1999.

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  1. PeteT

    PeteT Guest

    Someone mentioned that there is a unit that has a portable head that can be taken with you hiking etc. Is it small like a hand held radio? Small enough to go backpacking?

    I go on an annual trip where we hike 10 miles up the coast in Northern CA. There is absolutely no road access and it is totally primitive. We hike in surfboards to this ripping cool break and camp for 4 days. If something were to happen out there we would pretty much be screwed, but if a HAM radio could repeat from my truck (10 miles distant?) it would make a great safety net.

    The problem is that when hiking along a beach with 60 lb packs (boards, wetsuits etc.), weight and size concerns are crucial. Do you think the unit mentioned might be feasible for this application?

    Weather is also a major concern when there
    since we go over Easter weekend and the weather is notoriously unstable during that time of year. Can you easily get weather, road, and traffic conditions from HAM radio? Are there many other operators who have them in cars and trucks etc?

    Sorry for these basic questions, but I really know next to nothing about the topic. Thanks for all your help!

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  3. RonB

    RonB Guest

    If you are interested in Ham radio, Rick's posting pretty much tells what it's all about. You need to get the license. A decent amount of studying is involved in order to pass the test (even though morse code is no longer required for the basic VHF/UHF license). What the gentleman was telling you about the remote head is that is is like some of the regular car radios where the front panel removes so as to deter theft of your radio. They are pricey. What you would take with you out of your vehicle is a walkie talkie. These come with the ability to transmit up to about 7 watts. With a repeater (read Ricks posting) in the area, a 7 watt handie talkie can get you up to 50 miles of coverage (or more under certain conditions). Now with a Mobile radio that installs in your Vehicle, they come with up to 50 watts of power. To put this in perspective, a CB radio in your car comes with a Federal mandated power output of no more than 5 watts. Now, you decide to get your Ham license and DO learn the morse code. What that will allow you do do is Transmit on the HF (1.6 - 30MHZ frequencies) bands. This will allow you to talk to someone in another country on your way to work. Neat stuff right? Well,
    The downside of this all is that if you get in trouble in your car on the interstate, it might be easier to get someone on CB on Channel 19 than to find a local ham repeater that someone is using. As mentioned abouve, a repeater is only good for about 50 miles. If you are driving cross country you may need to bring a repeater directory with you. I hope I'm not giving you too much info. Reply if you get the gist of what I'm sending. Ham radio IS a great Hobby. My call sign is N2IIE.

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