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Fire Tone Out search.

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  • w2irt
    Hi all, I m still trying to get a handle on the whole process for FTO. Namely how to decode and what to do after I find them. I know what 2-tone sequential
    Message 1 of 7 , Jun 22, 2014
      Hi all,

      I'm still trying to get a handle on the whole process for FTO. Namely how to decode and what to do after I find them. I know what 2-tone sequential paging is and how it's used, but not how the 396xt and 996xt work with them. I've read the "Easier to understand" guide and the RR Wiki but that's only provided a scant few answers.

      My local townships in NJ (they are not listed in the reference) dispatch on what they call their "municipal band" frequency of 158.94, PL 141.3. They tone out three fire departments in adjoining towns (West Caldwell, Caldwell and Roseland, as well as the West Essex First Aid Squad). So at very minimum, there are four sets of tones, and maybe more, sent on this RF Frequency. Two other towns use similar toneouts on their own RF frequencies for FD and EMS.

      I see 10 Fire Toneouts available. Do I take this to mean that only 10 different departments or stations can ever be entered into the scanner or are there more somewhere? Or am I not understanding what to do with it??

      So let's say I sit on 158.94, set tones A and B to 0.0Hz and modulation to AUTO (or NFM). The dispatchers send out tones for two of the three FDs and the EMS for a structure fire, let's say. Will the scanner search for and decode all three tones or only the first one it hears?

      Then what? It decodes either one of the three (or all three). Where does it store them? Can I only monitor one of them at a time on only one RF frequency or can I set it to rotate through multiple RF frequencies that have toneouts on them?

      Sorry if this is a bit rambling; I'm really trying to understand what this feature can (and can not) accomplish.

      Thanks.


    • MCH
      You are very close to understanding it. Yes, you can enter up to 10 tone sets of the same frequency and the scanner will alert on any or all of them. Yes,
      Message 2 of 7 , Jun 22, 2014
        You are very close to understanding it. Yes, you can enter up to 10 tone sets of the same frequency and the scanner will alert on any or all of them. Yes, entering 0 Hz for the a and b tones will initiate tone search mode on which it will show the first tone set it hears. Make sure you set it for infinite delay or it will automatically clear the ton set. It does not store them anywhere. 

        Joe M. 

        On Jun 22, 2014, at 9:21 PM, "lists@... [BCD396XT]" <BCD396XT@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

        Hi all,

        I'm still trying to get a handle on the whole process for FTO. Namely how to decode and what to do after I find them. I know what 2-tone sequential paging is and how it's used, but not how the 396xt and 996xt work with them. I've read the "Easier to understand" guide and the RR Wiki but that's only provided a scant few answers.

        My local townships in NJ (they are not listed in the reference) dispatch on what they call their "municipal band" frequency of 158.94, PL 141.3. They tone out three fire departments in adjoining towns (West Caldwell, Caldwell and Roseland, as well as the West Essex First Aid Squad). So at very minimum, there are four sets of tones, and maybe more, sent on this RF Frequency. Two other towns use similar toneouts on their own RF frequencies for FD and EMS.

        I see 10 Fire Toneouts available. Do I take this to mean that only 10 different departments or stations can ever be entered into the scan ner or are there more somewhere? Or am I not understanding what to do with it??

        So let's say I sit on 158.94, set tones A and B to 0.0Hz and modulation to AUTO (or NFM). The dispatchers send out tones for two of the three FDs and the EMS for a structure fire, let's say. Will the scanner search for and decode all three tones or only the first one it hears?

        Then what? It decodes either one of the three (or all three). Where does it store them? Can I only monitor one of them at a time on only one RF frequency or can I set it to rotate through multiple RF frequencies that have toneouts on them?

        Sorry if this is a bit rambling; I'm really trying to understand what this feature can (and can not) accomplish.

        Thanks.


      • w2irt
        OK, I think I got a handle on what it does when it receives correctly-set tones, but the real question is how do I go about identifying them. I had the scanner
        Message 3 of 7 , Jun 23, 2014
          OK, I think I got a handle on what it does when it receives correctly-set tones, but the real question is how do I go about identifying them. I had the scanner set to 0.0 / 0.0 and it found the first one. It flashed for about 15 seconds or so then disappeared. What do I do when they tone out two or three 2-tone groups in immediate succession?
        • MCH
          The 15 second display can be fixed by setting the delay longer - such as infinite like I suggested previously. When there are multiple tone sets in succession,
          Message 4 of 7 , Jun 23, 2014
            The 15 second display can be fixed by setting the delay longer - such as infinite like I suggested previously. When there are multiple tone sets in succession, it depends on the policies of the dispatch center. Usually, they will dispatch the home station first - the one where the call is located. If they do that, the first tone set will be different and you can catch each one. The alternative is to set the delay short (1 second) and try to memorize each tone set. 

            Joe M. 

            On Jun 23, 2014, at 10:20 PM, "lists@... [BCD396XT]" <BCD396XT@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

            OK, I think I got a handle on what it does when it receives correctly-set tones, but the real question is how do I go about identifying them. I had the scanner set to 0.0 / 0.0 and it found the first one. It flashed for about 15 seconds or so then disappeared. What do I do when they tone out two or three 2-tone groups in immediate succession?
          • MCH
            Oh, and if they do tone out each department in the same order, you can let it decode the first set, then the next time reset it after the first set to get the
            Message 5 of 7 , Jun 23, 2014
              Oh, and if they do tone out each department in the same order, you can let it decode the first set, then the next time reset it after the first set to get the second set. Then, reset the first two to get the third, etc. 

              Joe M. 

              On Jun 23, 2014, at 10:31 PM, "MCH mch@... [BCD396XT]" <BCD396XT@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

              The 15 second display can be fixed by setting the delay longer - such as infinite like I suggested previously. When there are multiple tone sets in succession, it depends on the policies of the dispatch center. Usually, they will dispatch the home station first - the one where the call is located. If they do that, the first tone set will be different and you can catch each one. The alternative is to set the delay short (1 second) and try to memorize each tone set. 

              Joe M. 

              On Jun 23, 2014, at 10:20 PM, "lists@... [BCD396XT]" <BCD396XT@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

              OK, I think I got a handle on what it does when it receives correctly-set tones, but the real question is how do I go about identifying them. I had the scanner set to 0.0 / 0.0 and it found the first one. It flashed for about 15 seconds or so then disappeared. What do I do when they tone out two or three 2-tone groups in immediate succession?
            • w2irt
              Well, this past week has been an adventure in tone decoding, that s for sure. I set up on the regional fire channel and found far more tones being sent than I
              Message 6 of 7 , Jun 25, 2014
                Well, this past week has been an adventure in tone decoding, that's for sure. I set up on the regional fire channel and found far more tones being sent than I ever imagined. I think I got most of the important ones from their nightly tests but I'm still missing a few.

                Usually they'll send the tones twice then the voice message, which does help a lot, but for the EMS squad they send two different groups in immediate succession.

                Is there any software I can connect to the radio that will grab and write to memory every group received (and the time of the call)?
              • MCH
                You can simply record the tones on a PC (or a HomePatrol model) and play them back over a cheap low power transmitter such as FRS or one I use - a 900 MHz
                Message 7 of 7 , Jun 25, 2014
                  You can simply record the tones on a PC (or a HomePatrol model) and play them back over a cheap low power transmitter such as FRS or one I use - a 900 MHz wireless headset transmitter. 

                  Joe M. 

                  On Jun 25, 2014, at 10:33 PM, "lists@... [BCD396XT]" <BCD396XT@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                  Well, this past week has been an adventure in tone decoding, that's for sure. I set up on the regional fire channel and found far more tones being sent than I ever imagined. I think I got most of the important ones from their nightly tests but I'm still missing a few.

                  Usually they'll send the tones twice then the voice message, which does help a lot, but for the EMS squad they send two different groups in immediate succession.

                  Is there any software I can connect to the radio that will grab and write to memory every group received (and the time of the call)?
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