FCC "Parts"

1 Feb 2015 - updated May 2017

There seems to be a lot of misinformation going around about the various "Parts" of the FCC code as it relates to ham radio, FRS, MURS, and so on. With these Baofeng radios (and other Chinese radios) capable of receiving and transmitting on these non-amateur radio frequencies, some seem to think that the license free capability and law of FRS/MURS means their Baofeng radio is legal to use on it. Simple answer is: no it is not legal to use any Baofeng with FRS, MURS or GMRS. Ham radio is user license to build/use devices within the allowed frequency ranges, this license does not grant you extra privileges on other frequencies outside of the ham radio band.

NOTE: Updated May 2017 with the new information passed by the FCC regarding FRS/GMRS. HINT: Baofengs are still 100% illegal on FRS, MURS, and GMRS, these changes and updates did not change that. All information here is current as of May 2017 within the borders of the USA (except a few restrictions along the US/Canada border).


Programming the UV-5R and variant

28 Feb 2017

Simple quick entry (video) on how to program the UV-5R and its variants.

Read/watch more here...

Open note to the ARRL and amateur radio clubs

9 Feb 2017

Today I noticed that the ARRL has posted a survey asking various questions, primarily for the goal of "how to attract younger people to amateur radio". On this page I will go through a lot of information related to this aspect, as well as plenty of my personal opinions on these subjects. If you don't like opinions (or me, or my opinions), I suggest you look elsewhere.

Read more here....

Double duty - Programming the 2501+220

29 Feb 2016

With this entry, I will cover 2 points: first being creating my own programming cable for the 2501+220 which should be the same process for all 3 models including the UV2501 and the UV5001 (the 2501 is dual band 144/440, 2501+220 is tri band so they are essentially 2 different models); and second being the software aspect for these radios.

Read more here...

Getting started in ham radio

8 July 2015

One of the biggest questions for people that are showing some interest in amateur/ham radio is "how do I get started?". This will be a simple short blog post to go over some of the basics, I will try to not go into too much detail.

Read more here...

Real versus fake Baofeng radios

Various dates

As time passes, the term "fake radio" is eventually heard. In some cases it is an obvious fake like a "Vaesu UV8DR", in other cases it is very hard to show or prove the fakes from real radios, sometimes it is another company's name on the outside. What I am trying to do here is compile information needed to try to help show how there is a LOT of fake Baofengs flooding the market today, and try to avoid them at all costs.

Read more here...

Baofeng, DM-5R, and DMR

15 October 2016

With the recent release of the "Baofeng DM-5R", all the problematic comments have flooded the ham radio forums and Baofeng specific groups. While calling it a scam is a bit of a stretch, that is essentially my opinion of it, and many others will share that perspective. There are some key aspects that people need to realize.

Read more here.....

Review of 3 FREE 3D printing slicer programs

4 July 2016

I know it has been a while since I've updated anything on this site. With my kids' school getting out for the summer, some trips out of town, plus I've been digging into a new hobby: 3D printing. So to take a break from the usual amateur radio related aspects, I decided to write a review on some slicer programs. While many may think that 3D printing is a bit of a niche, sure it is but it is a lot like amateur radio, so expansive and the possibilities are almost endless.

Read more here...

Ham scams and April Fools

11 April 2016

Throughout the years, amateur radio has had its share of pranksters and hijinks, as well as simple photoshopped images that circulate primarily around April Fools Day, although some have been known to make the rounds at other times of the year. I figured I would have some fun and post a few of the more popular ones here.

Read more here...

JT65 tips and tricks

31 Mar 2016

After using JT65 for a while, I am going to pass along these bits and pieces about JT65 based on annoyances I've seen, and poor use of the spectrum.

Read more here....

Leap day entry - Programming the UV2501+220

29 Feb 2016

With this entry, I will cover 2 points: first being creating my own programming cable for the 2501+220 which should be the same process for all 3 models including the UV2501 and the UV5001 (the 2501 is dual band 144/440, 2501+220 is tri band so they are essentially 2 different models); and second being the software aspect for these radios.

Read more here...

Dec 12 - Happy "Marconi is a thief" day

12 Dec 2015

I use this title as a bit of sarcasm and a lot of truth. Every year, especially in this day of social media, we get these posts about "On this day, Dec. 12, 1901, Marconi sends the first Trans-Atlantic wireless message from England to Newfoundland." Yet where is the mention from early 1895 when Tesla was transmitting a signal over 50 miles? Or the transmissions in 1899 from Colorado to New York?

Read more here...

Tiger tail - is it worth it?

3 Nov 2015

Something that has been quietly making the rounds in ham radio groups in social media is this quaint little thing commonly called the "tiger tail", or more appropriately a counterpoise. One thing that people never agree upon is if it really makes that much of a difference.

Read more here...

Day 1 with the UV-82HP

21 June 2015

This morning, the UV-82HP arrived on my doorstep, courtesy of Sunday delivery by USPS. I've spent the last few hours paying with it and getting some initial impressions of the radio.

Read more here...

BaofengTech announces UV-82HP

20 June 2015

Today we look at the new UV-82HP, the newest model in the UV-82 line from Baofeng, which is essentially updated hardware provided for the US distributor side of the company, BaofengTech. The UV-82 line has been regarded as a preferred model for some people due to its slightly more rugged build, the increased speaker output, and the commercial options available in the software not available for most of the UV-5R, BF-F8, or GT3 line. This radio falls along the lines of combining the better options of the BF-F8HP with the UV-82C radio.

Read more here....

Price gouging or free market?

14 May 2015

To an extent, the big 3 have seen they can ask a higher price for their equipment because no one else has come along to challenge them by offering similar items at lower prices AND have the quality to back it up. So why is it even today when we can build or buy a home computer for $200 that can do more than ever, why are ham radios still stuck in the 1980s with exorbitant prices and inflated profit margins? Some say it is the free market, which I understand to some extent, but with this modern day global market when we have have a cheap low quality, everyday normal regular item, as well as diamond studded equivalent of almost everything, why are our only choices for ham radio equipment either the cheap low quality, or the high end diamond studded equivalents, with no middle ground?

Read more here....

TERMN-8R pulled due to complaints

Bureaucracy over technical knowledge

22 April 2015

Recently the Anytone TERMN-8R radio had its Part 95 approval revoked by the FCC. This can much more easily be explained as pure bureaucracy instead of being revoked for any technical reasons. Then it does not help that the comments floating around on forums and Facebook are full of people ignorant of the law spreading false information based on their opinions and preferences of what it SHOULD mean or say....

Read more here...

Anytone Tech OBLTR-8R

Initial impressions and info

11 April 2015

Today I received the Anytone Tech OBLTR-8R and figured I would give a few initial early impressions. As most of my previous HT use has been Baofengs, and borrowing a Yaesu or Kenwood on occasion, I definitely have to say this OBLTR-8R is a great radio. Like any radio, there is a slightly learning curve until you get the hang of how this specific model and manufacturer does things. One note that some people may notice is the word "Tech" on this line of radios. The company "Anytone Tech" (which is the same group that owns/runs "Baofeng Tech") worked very closely with Anytone, based on what it learned from their customers, and what the radio manufacturers were willing to do with their models. I do not know for sure, but I would venture a guess that Anytone was a little more cooperative than Baofeng when it came to manufacturing this new line of radios.


AnyTone and AnyTone Tech launches new line of radios

9 March 2015

Today marks the launch of a new partnership between AnyTone Tech (the company also known as BaoFeng Tech), and AnyTone as a new line of radios are launched thanks to months of input and hard work from the BaoFeng Tech crew.
Today they launch 4 new radios, each with its own specific target demographic. NOTE: It seems Amazon set the sale to go active today, although they should have not been officially released or posted until sometime in the next few days. thats ok, we got the info, and seems a few people got their orders in early.


Modern adjustment for a classic Ground Plane

28 Jan 2015

One antenna that Elmers always recommend that newly licensed hams build is the simple solid copper wire ground plane, among others. It is so popular that there are probably as many websites depicting the various types as there are new hams this year. This has been a staple of the base station low power setups for a very long time. It is small, simple and easy to make yourself. Its popularity is something that has some new hams possibly wondering why, and many times the experienced hams answer is something more along the lines of "it just works well". Even if they try to get technical, sometimes the experienced hams may still not entirely understand why it works so well. I myself do not have years of college or decades in the field so I may not completely understand the electromagnetic process, but what I do understand is computers. With a computer in front of me and some modeling software, here I come along to throw a kink in the process, so all hams, new and old should enjoy this.


Tips for new Baofeng users

24 Jan 2015

Off to the lower right I have a link for the Miklor Baofeng Resource page, but they have so much information it can be difficult for new users to find the information they need. I hope to go over a few basics here to get many of you started.


Making a case for 1.25m 220MHz use

2014 Dec 27

As the Amateur radio evolves, many groups and companies (Yaesu, Icom, etc) are finding new ways to make use of existing bands. With the expansive use of 2m, it has seen the biggest expansion of available services such as D-star, Yaesu Fusion, and others, even though these side modes are also typically available in other modes. The issue there is the capability. Most radios made for use with these modes are typically 2m only, or 2m/70cm, which is fine if 2 people are using radios both capable of it, and/or through a repeater capable of using it. The sheer number of units out there tends to leave most repeater use as FM only, with certain repeaters setup for use with these specific modes. With the new Yaesu repeaters coming online, some use the Yaesu Fusion which allows the person to choose either analog FM or Digital, and the repeater handles that natively. The down side is anyone without a digital mode option in their radio just hears noise, not the voice.


As more blog entries are added, some get moved to the archived blog entries page. As this is a new website, this will probably not need to be done for a month or two.