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How to get reliable 60 miles direct. 2 or 10

Discussion in 'General Ham Radio Discussion' started by NeoHam, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. NeoHam

    NeoHam New Again

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    I am looking for good direct communications. I know 10 meters has been good with the solar cycle but what is it like without it in the day? How much power would I need during a poor day? How far can I get with 50 to 75 watts on 2 meters with high gain antenna base to mobile direct?


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  2. n0zna

    n0zna W9WDX Amateur Radio Club Member

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    2mtr would be more relyable...2fm or ssb...get a ft2800m or ft2900m would be great...Kenwood 261 or 271 great radios also...i run a ft2800m and talk simplex 1 to 150miles no problems...73 de JW
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  3. W5LZ

    W5LZ Crotchety Old Bastard

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    I'm afraid you aren't going to get -reliable- 60 mile communications on either 2 or 10 meters, base or mobile, day or night. There's a -possibility- or 60 mile communication, but it won't be reliable by any stretch of the imagination. You would come closer on 2 meters with the use of repeaters or links, but that's it. Sorry, Momma Nature isn't going to be cooperative with her propagation. She'll 'flirt' with you but don't count on anything...
    - 'Doc
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  4. NeoHam

    NeoHam New Again

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    Wow - you can get 100 miles?!

    I see the 2800 is 65 watts and the 2900 is 75 watts. I was really leaning toward 10 meters when I get my license next month. I am assuming there will be no repeaters when SHTF. There's only one or two around here anyway. I know nothing is 'reliable' like foolproof I was just wondering if I should put my money into 10 or 2 meters since there really isn't a basic rig that does both. Guess I'll have to reevaluate. Thanks N0zna
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  5. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    Power is only one aspect of talking distance. There are other factors to be considered. Mountains, cities, antenna height at either end. Lots of variables!
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  6. Captain Kilowatt

    Captain Kilowatt Professional Amateur Staff Member

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    I agree with what Robb said. One watt on a mountain top will talk further than100 watts in a valley. Terrain has a HUGE influence on your coverage area.
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  7. RatsoW8

    RatsoW8 Supporting Member

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    Another casualty of Domsday Preppers :D
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  8. binrat

    binrat W9WDX Amateur Radio Club Member

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    Have to agree, I'm running 7 watts on 2 metres and I am hitting repeaters 45 miles away. I'm at a high point in my area forlooking Georgian Bay. I think I could hit repeaters in northern Michigan if I tried.
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  9. AudioShockwav

    AudioShockwav Extraterrestrial Admin Staff Member

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    I have used a 14 element Yagi, and 300 milliwatts and worked a repeater that was Approx 140 Air miles from my location.
    The repeater, the CVARC repeater was sitting @3700 feet overlooking the Central Valley area, and I was on the valley floor.
    Capt has that 100% correct, Terrain has a HUGE influence on your coverage area.
    VHF is Line of sight radio.Take that same power level and you might not be able to talk 2 miles in a congested area blocked by trees, buildings or hills.
    If the Base antenna is sitting up on a hill, and the mobile is also sitting up in the clear, No problem.
    If that mobile is sitting somewhere that is in the shadow of a hill, buildings, trees or other types of obstructions, not going to happen.

    Sometimes this can be used to your advantage, look at the illustration below.

    The low powered handi talkie can transmit to the radio repeater at the top of the hill, then the radio repeater at the top of the hill can transmit that signal down to the 2nd user on the other side.
    The two people could never talk directly to each other through the hill. You would have to have the equipment and the hilltop property ( or the owners permission) along with a power source to do this type of set-up.

    Hope this helps show how VHF/ 2 meters works.
    A suggestion, Study, find a group of Amateur radios operators in your area, talk to them, go take the test and get your License.
    Regardless of your intentions, hobby, survival or what ever the reason, a group of radio operators can allow you the access to much more and much farther reaching equipment/systems than an individual has at there disposal......
    You can learn, have security that many forms of communications are available to you, in some cases help others, and even have some fun as well.


    73
    Jeff

    P.S.
    For licensed Amateurs, there is even a guy that will Plot your line of sight on a map for you ( as time permits)

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Mar 27, 2012
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  10. gamegetter

    gamegetter Well-Known Member

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    google earth

    can be used to show elevation profile.

    if you have it installed on your computer, draw a path by selecting the 'add a path' tool, once drawn between the two locations you are wondering if you have line of sight, then right click the path you drew and select show elevation profile.

    this will not show trees,buildings or other man made features, but it is a starting point.
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  11. AudioShockwav

    AudioShockwav Extraterrestrial Admin Staff Member

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    I did not know that Gamegetter, i will have to play with Google earth this afternoon...cool, thanks.

    73
    Jeff
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  12. trapland

    trapland Member

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    If you can assume there will be no repeaters, why do you think your own radios will work? What is causing the S to HTF? If its EMP from a CME, your stuff is toast too, unless you know how to protect it.

    Radio could be a useful tool in a disaster (SHTF, EOTWAWKI, WROL, whatever), but you cant just BUY a bunch of stuff, sling it up and expect it to save your life when you need it. Without the KNOWLEDGE OF RADIO in general and practical experience of actually operating A HAM RADIO STATION, its like buying a bag of seeds and a shovel and expecting to learn to feed your family when you've already run out of food.

    If you dont already KNOW what bands/modes/installations will meet your needs in an emergency, then study more and experiment more.

    Or just build/buy lots of stuff, play with it and have fun, because radio IS fun. Someday you will KNOW what YOUR radios can do for you in an emergency.
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  13. NeoHam

    NeoHam New Again

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    >then study more and experiment more<
    These answers are part of my study. I used to be an operator about 30 years ago when I was a bit younger. I was only a novice but we got on my friend's dad's rig and went to town. The technician license is basically for 10 or 2 meters. I can't afford to experiment. Since there is only one rig I can find that does both bands I can only invest in one band. It sounds like 10 meters is probably more reliable given obstructions,etc. I was in Detroit the day the east coast lost power. Luckily I started driving north and got to a gas station that had power when I still had 1/8 tank left. I also don't want to use repeaters because my wife will not want to monitor others' traffic, I need to find my own clear spot for simplex.

    I must assume you have no experience Trapland since you use so many words and offer no information, only comments.

    www.infowars.com
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  14. ahamoperator

    ahamoperator peanut whistle

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    Hello, hope I can help a little with your decision between 10 and 2 meters, I think it's an easy one.

    I'v operated on ten meters for over 25 yrs and it is a favorite band of mine.
    Over the years I'v used a 5/8wave vertical @ 80ft, a 5 element mono at 70ft
    and a tribander..Its a fun band for DX and long distance contacts on ground wave if you have extreme equipment.

    As others have said HAAT (heighth above average terrain) is the most important thing of all.

    That being said, without a doubt 2 meters is the way to go...high gain antennas are an easy route. (relativly small) and power is relativly cheap
    on the used market.

    Don't bother with the new 75 watt rigs...the difference over 50 watts is only 1.8 db..not much help there. an easily found 170watt brick offers 3.5db over
    75 watts, and 5.3db over 50 watts...The last RFConcepts 170w amp I had put out 190watts with 43w in on a bird 43..yeah fans are a must...

    Mobiles really shine with high gain antennas, even though its hard to find many that offer high power useage..

    Mounting yagis vertical can be discouraging because of the effect of the mast. Either use a pvc mast and stand the feedline off, or best co-phase
    2 yagis for almost another 3 db gain..

    This spring we are putting up a 26B2 setup @ 75 feet, wish I had some pics to back up that boast. The polarity of the "H" (antennas and cross boom) is rotatable by the
    use of a modified Yaesu elevation rotor for vert or horiz....
    73, Keith
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2012
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  15. Beetle

    Beetle Well-Known Member

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    Don't forget that you have privileges on 80, 40 and 15 meters also.
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