Best handheld radio?

WYO300RUM

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 23, 2011
Messages
3,498
Location
Wyoming
Another vote for the Baofeng UV5R and get the long ~14" antenna shown in 338 Dude's picture https://www.baofengradio.com/produc...MIkovBjPrg_AIVD21vBB1DTgtQEAQYAyABEgKrv_D_BwE
Thanks Wedgy ! I just ordered a set. I installed longer antennas when I got them a few years ago. I think they are 8 in. Been thinking about getting longer ones. You just made it easy for me ! 👍🏼
 

ntsqd

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Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
1,422
Location
Upper SoKA
If you're using those Baofengs or any other ham HT and you don't have CHIRP to program them with, you're working way too hard. I have a ggalge of them available as loaners and I keep them all programmed the same way using CHIRP.
 

LDHunter

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Joined
Jun 21, 2001
Messages
830
Location
NW Florida Piney Woods
These inexpensive Baofeng VHF and UHF handheld radios work with repeaters and radio to radio and mine is already 3 years old with extensive use and they can easily communicate for well over a mile through the dense swampy woods here. The newer models have 8 watt output and come with a hand mic and ear piece if you want. They work very very well with crazy long battery life and are super reliable. I acknowledge that the Yaesu and Icom radios are better but these work so well nobody I know buys anything else.

They can be had on Amazon for ridiculously low prices. Yes... They're made in China but almost all electronics are these days anyway. I got mine with an extra high capacity battery but even the regular battery lasts a couple of days with moderate talking so I've never had to switch batteries other than to just keep them charged up and moderately used to make sure they're still good.

You're supposed to have a ham license to use them but if you stay off the marine, government and private ham channels and out of the cities the chances of anyone caring are pretty slim. Just don't park on one frequency and talk all the time. Channel hop and if someone asks you to use another frequency always honor their request.

At 8 watts out of a handheld you're VERY unlikely to ever step on anyone's toes or get in trouble especially out in the wilderness where your cell phones don't work. If you start using car or home mounted radios with more wattage then you really should consider getting a ham technician's license or face being tracked down and the fines, from what I've heard are pretty hefty. The range extends a huge amount when you start using car or tower mounted antennas with 25w and up radios.

You should also download the frequency listings to know what frequencies to absolutely NEVER transmit on. I'm no expert on this so someone else please chime in on what frequencies would be best for this. One of my friends set up my radio and a lot of my friends radios and we just push to talk when we need them when we're out hunting. We also don't cause a lot of radio chatter and they're primarily used when cell phones will not work well or when we want to talk to the hunting or fishing group as a whole.

They're primarily used on a licensed repeater and rarely on other frequencies but sometimes we need to channel hop when we're out of the repeater's range.
 

mnoland30

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Joined
Dec 24, 2010
Messages
492
If you're not using Garmin Rinos, you are missing out. It is a radio and GPS. It will tell you the location of your hunting partners, and lead you right to them. If you're walking in woods, you can beep each other every few minutes and know exactly where your safe shooting lanes are. If you get the license (or are a scoflaw) you can use the GMRS which has great range. I find I don't really need that range most of the time. The newer models have rechargable batteries, and can also be run off of AA batteries with an adapter. We use earbuds for quiet, and by naming and sending your location, you can text short messages. The FCC limitst texts to about 14 characters, but it is usually enough.
 

338ultramag

New Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2016
Messages
4
Used a motorola handheld for years. Gmrs is probably the most reasonable. The license that FCC requires was only 50 bucks and they assign a license to operator. It also allows operator to use up to 50 watts of power and use of repeater. I was able to reach people over 50 miles away. The motorla allowed me to attach a mobile antenna and plug into a remote power source. The radio could transmit on battery pack at 7 watts over 7 miles line of sight.
 

Firedad

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Nov 27, 2022
Messages
139
Location
Reno, NV
For fire we use Bendix King and have used midlands until they went out of business. Our mod used a few baofengs for our crew channel to free up our BKs for command channels. Having easy access to frequencies across the country and tone guards for repeaters I just use a channel I won’t interfere with local traffic.
 

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