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Scout Radio news Item

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  • Bob Bruninga
    Scout Radio Enthusiasts: Here is what I am submitting to my local Council s newsletter. You might want to submit it to your area council as well. PLEASE
    Message 1 of 1 , May 5, 1999
      Scout Radio Enthusiasts:

      Here is what I am submitting to my local Council's newsletter. You might
      want to submit it to your area council as well. PLEASE change the
      Email address at the end to yours so that your area contacts you. I
      was going to refer everyone to join the SCOUTRADIO Reflectors, but
      thought including all the details of how to subscribe was too much
      detail to include in this first announcement. (I still think we
      need only 1 reflector so as to simplify things and cut down on copies).
      This is written to appeal to the general public, so it tries to
      simplify it to essentials...


      Recent Government rules changes now make it
      easlier than ever to stay in communications while
      in the woods or on outings. This is Great news
      for scouting. The new Family Radio Service (FRS)
      is a license free radio band that can be used by
      anyone for personal communications and because of
      the mass market, these good quality FRS radios are
      sold just about everywhere for $40 to $80.

      While visiting Broad Creek Scout Reservation
      open house last week, I noticed several families
      who arrived outfitted with FRS radios including Mom,
      Dad, and the kids. In order to share the experience
      my family joined with one of the other families
      on channel 1 so that we could all play radio and the
      kids could meet new friends. Thats when we realized
      that Scouting needs to have a published and agreed
      SCOUTING CHANNEL. This way Scouts on outings can
      have a good change of finding other Scouts in the area.

      We propose Channel 1, Tone 0 for a National Scout
      Calling channel. There are 14 channels and there are
      38 private tones making for over 500 combinations of
      ways NOT to communicate. Although there are only 14
      channels, the tones keep your radio silent at all
      times until someone else on the same channel and with
      the same Tone calls. THen you will only hear them.
      Note, only one conversation can occur on any one
      channel at a time.

      We choose Channel 1 for the very good reason that
      until now, more than half of all radios sold were
      single channel only and all were sold on channel 1.
      Thus many scouts can only talk on channel 1. Also
      most of these early radios (which are now deeply
      discounted in price to less than $30 if you can find
      them) did not have any Tones. THus Channel 1, NO
      tones, or Tone 0, is the best place to use as a
      "calling channel". Once you find out where everyone
      is, and if the channel begins to get crowded, then
      you may move off to another agreed channel and tone
      combination. But always start on channel 1, tone 0.

      Though lacking the range and power of good HAM
      Radio Walkie-Talkies, these FRS radios give good
      commercial quality communications over 1, to 2 miles.
      These correspond approximately to the available power
      ranges of .1 to .5 Watts respectively. Actual range
      may vary greatly from 10 miles from a mountain top
      to only a few blocks inside buildings in a dense city.

      The FRS Radios are a good way to not only get good
      quality off-the-shelf communications now, but also to
      get your boys interested in Radio and then later
      advancing them up to HAM radio. There is an E-Mail
      news reflector on this new subject of SCOUTRADIO.
      Contact Bob Bruninga at WB4APR@... for more info.
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