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More Comments on 220 MHz

John (N2JKV) on September 16, 2006
View comments about this article!

There have been plenty of comments regarding the 220 (222) MHz band and the scant commercial gear available, etc. I just want to throw in some other remarks on this.

One can find hams who are passionate about preserving and possibly even expanding our interests in this primary allocation, and this is very admirable. And there are plenty who don't really care and would give it away. While I can understand why someone might not care, needless to say this is quite dangerous! We don't need any precedents set with a band that is arguably regionally underutilized.

We all know what happens when precedents are set. I guess I would join the ranks of the "220 proponents". I do wish there were more folks using the band. On the other hand, if our community could only see the future... I wonder how many of today's hams would have proposed a swap when the FCC in 1973 was considering making a "class E" citizens band on 220? Imagine if there was a 3-year phase out of 27Mhz CB manufacturing and a 15-year total remaining lifetime until it would revert to an 11-meter amateur band? I probably would rather have another HF band, and would have supported such a scheme if someone had proposed it. But, as history played out, 220 is still ours and I think that short of such a similar swap proposal today, we ought to fight to preserve the band.

I have read all of the arguments about the disincentive to manufacturers due to lack of demand, no region 1 allocation, etc. But is somewhat a vicious circle when it comes to the supply/demand aspects. A typical HF radio has all the HF bands, and yet some hams may never ever use 160, 75/80, or 40. But it is still included in the radio. Some newer radios add 6M, 2M and 70cm. While this is nice for mobile usage, it seems to be overkill for base use.

To me, I would rather have a HF+6M base with maybe an optional module for 2M in one radio. For its complement, I would love to see on the commercial market an all mode radio with the 144, 222, 440, 1.2 GHz, and perhaps even 902 MHz as an optional module, all in one! Yes, some folks may never use 222. Some may never use 902. But at least it would be there and available. Plenty don't use 160 or 80 meters either, but it is in an HF rig. Having all these bands in a VHF/UHF radio would enable people to venture onto the other bands easily and conveniently. Perhaps niches would develop. The added populations on the bands would help preserve them.

Since I have HF + 6M covered as a base and have 2M/440 FM covered in the mobile, I would JUMP on the purchase of an all mode base (or mobile) rig that covered 144 through 1.2 gig. I expect that quite a few others would also jump on that and it would be a very marketable radio. What do others think?

Member Comments:
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More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N6AJR on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I would love to have an all mode all band rig, including 220, like on the ts 2000
or even a good multiband 6m, 2m, 220 mhx, 440 mhz and 1.2g machime for around the price of an 857d say under $600.

It wiolud be a hot seller. I currently have 9 hf rigs, of which 5 go above hf, the two 857d's and the ft 847 and the ts200 and the ic 746 pro. and then a half dozen mobile rigs in the shack for 2m, 440 6m, and 220, for monitoring purposes.som are fm and some multimode.
but a 160 to 1.2 would be sweet, a shack in a box

now how big is a fan dipole on 1.2 g


 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N3JBH on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
it look like Peacock upside down if you used differant color wires Tom. wahooooooooo a 60's flash back.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KI4PNL on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I agree completely. I would like to something like the Icom 910H, with all the VHF/UHF bands, and all mode. 6 meters would be nice for this rig as well. This would be great for satellite operation, and for contests and even ECOMM work. Its a really nice thought.

73
Shane
KI4PNL
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WW0H on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
KI4PNL has a good suggestion - it doesn't need to have HF & 6 meters, since those are plentiful already; but something like the 910 with 220 and more would be great. The mentioned price sounds like a good idea as well.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by VA3SAX on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I would definitely go for a rig that could do that...even better if 6 meters was on there as well provided of course that this rig would end up in a price range that is far below that of rigs like the 910
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W4MEC on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Good grief. Unless you are into moonbounce, mountaintopping, roving during a contest, or weak signal work on 6 and 2 meters, once you get past 2 meters, you're going to be talking to all the same people. It would seem, that there might be a reason to have gear that goes up to 1.2Ghz if you are in a crowded metropolitan area, or someplace where all the repeaters are closed, but judging from ARRL online poll data, and results of contests above 2 meters, there is not alot of hams interested in moving up. Hard Fact of FCC Life #1 - occupying and utilizing those freqs is not going to sway FCC opinion when they want to realocate the higher bands. The movie, 'Field of Dreams', brought the phrase, "If you build it they will come" to life. If you buy a rig for 1.2 gig and then complain about lack of activity, they still won't come. You will probably be asked why you bought it.

Charlie in NC
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W1YW on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
...and yet another step towards losing 3300-3500 MHz.

Will the last person on 3300 please turn off the light?
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W6RTW on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Although 222 MHz is generally under-utilized, we have several repeaters on the band geared toward Riverside County RACES support. Although FM, of which I have an old Yaesu 220 FM radio in the car, I like the ability of having all mode in the shack. I have accomplished this with an ICOM 706 MkII G and an Elecraft 222 Mhz Transverter. With that setup, I have 160 thru 440 Mhz all-mode. As earlier described a shack in a box (actually 2 boxes with the transverter) (Maybe 3 boxes with the power supply)
73,
Bob - W6RTW
http://www.home.earthlink.net/~w6rtw
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N3AWS on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I have long advocated a 220 MHz transverter compatible with the 706 style rigs for ~ $100.00--perhaps as a kit. Icom doesn't seem interested. Maybe Ten Tec would be?????

73,

Jim N3AWS
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N0AH on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
220MHz and CW.............ground hogs of Eham-
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by ONLYON6METERS on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
excellent idea!!! if it was affordable, i'd get 2!!! heck, i'd be more then satisfied if 220 was included in a 706/897 type of radio!!! i'd LOVE to add 220 capabilities (as well as 2m & 440...)for contesting & VHF propagation. so what if i only use it a couple times a year. i am 'ONLYON6METERS', using 6m SSB for contests & DX, & apparently so do many others, based on how 'little' it is used otherwise. but the manufacturers added 6m to their HF rigs & 6 seems to be exploding. 220 just might do the same.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W4CNG on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
You have got to remember where the RADIO is manufactured, JAPAN, NOT in the USA. Their band plan system does not match ours, hence NO 220Mhz, 900Mhz or 60 Meters. They also have many MORE folks buying radio's there than in the USA. This is not the first time this has come up, and likely will not be the last. These "Lost Children Bands" will likely not survive in the next 10 years.....
Steve W4CNG
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by G8KHS on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I wish we had 220Mhz in the uk and europe, I'm sure elecraft would sell lots of their XV222 transverters here, and they would get my order real quick too!
Alas, due to other spectrum users this will never be, a great shame, still we have all the other bands to use!

73, John G8KHS
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KB9RQZ on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
id love it althought I have some 222 mhz fm gear
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by AI2IA on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
My son and I are both hams. Between us we have two Alinco DR-235Ts and two Alinco DJ280Ts. Because there are two of us, we use 220 MHz whenever we can. It is ghostly quiet, has great building penetrating capapbility, and it is very inviting to easily make your own antennas. Since the antennas are physically small, we have a lot of fun making them. We often leave a DR-235T on for long periods of time and scan with it. We do hear some Spanish speaking hams taking advantage of it, and we in New York also hear hams across the Arthur Kill Creek in New Jersey conduct rag chews in FM on the band.
Why forego using the band when it is there for your use? If nothing else, you and a ham buddy should get yourself each a 220 MHz H/T and use them when you are in an urban environment or for any outdoor purpose. It would be nice to do much more on this band. If kits became available, some of us would do even more.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by NA5XX on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Yes 220 is a US and Canadian band so Kenyacom is reluctant to make equipment for it. That leaves the US manufacurers to fill the void and they don't. TenTec would cost to much and MFJ (we all know what that stands for). Seems the only radios of current manufacturer with full power are from Kenwood and Alinco. My question is, should a 220 rig really cost twice as much as a 440 or 144 rig. Lets have a 220 module for theso radios that have the option for a module. Allow two modules to be inserted for 1.2 and 220, or alow choice of 1.2 or 220 if only 1 slot is available. If equipment was availabe/affordable the 220 band would be quite active I believe. It is the chicken and egg question. Is there no/few 220 radios because of lack of activity, or is the no 220 activity do to lack of radios?
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WB2AMU on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Roger on many of the comments. I think that a nice compromise would be either a dual band all mode radio (220 and 432) or a tri-band radio (144, 220 and 432) all mode radio. Right now, 220 and 432 weak signal are only active during the ARRL VHF Contest. Two Meters weak signal activity is not where it should be either. You will not get a Japanese manufacturer interested in making this radio, so the only hope is an American manufacturer. During the ARRL September VHF contest the past weekend, I had to use a FM 220 MHz HT to make contacts. This was acceptable but not optimal. We need more daily users on the 220 MHz band in the weak signal section!
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N6TZ on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
There is sure an attitude that the FCC is going to take the 220 band from us for some other use. I would like to know what other use?

If any of you have visited hill-top comm sites in recent years, you will have seen a lot of empty racks in the rooms and old fibre-glass collinears laying on the ground in back of the buildings.

This is all a result of cell phone and wi-fi/wi-max technology taking over. The times, they are a changing!!

Hal, N6TZ
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W5TD on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
"Some newer radios add 6M, 2M and 70cm. While this is nice for mobile usage, it seems to be overkill for base use."

I don't understand this statement. You obviously have never worked the satellites, or experienced the joy of working tropo on VHF and UHF. There is life beyond FM when you get above 30mhz.

73s John W5TD
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W5TD on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
"I wish we had 220Mhz in the uk and europe"

And I wish we had 4 metres in the US. More Eskip there. Want to trade bands?

73s John W5TD
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W5TD on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
"Yes 220 is a US and Canadian band"

No, it is a region 2 band. Let's not limit it more than it already is.

73s john W5TD
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WA9SVD on September 16, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Some people are missing the point! A GOOD VHF/UHF multimode would be a great idea. But 6 Meters would have to be included. THAT would make it a true VHF/UHF radio, without having to carry around (or purchase) an additional HF radio! Since the 222 MHz band is only a Region II Amateur allocation, it would best be included as an option, for such a radio to have true international appeal and maeket. 900 MHz would be another band that could be available as an option. (And those options would have to be "user installable," not just added by trained technicians.) Modular assembly would be a good way to go about it, but be able to include all the modules from 6 M on up to atleast 1.2 GHz, without swapping modules. Soulds like a tall order, though.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KD4AC on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I agree, it would be nice to see more 220 equipment out there. I remember when I was a novice back in 1987, the market was flooded with 220 equipment from the "big three." I owned a Kenwood TM-632 (144/220) mobile and a TH-315. But then suddenly, the FCC took 2 MHz of spectrum and handed it to UPS for a radio system they never built. After that happened, the equipment started disappearing, with Kenwood being the last major manufacturer producing anything with 220 (the TM-331 and 742 w/220 module) at the time. And as I recall, the TM-331 sold for over $100 more than its 2M or 70cm counterpart.

There's been the argument that no one produces equipment due to lack of interest... well, one could also argue there's a lack of interest due to lack of equipment. But then again, 2M or 70cm equipment is plentiful and, depending on where you live, there's very little activity there. There used to be a LOT of 2M activity when I lived in San Diego, but now on most days you can scan across any of the repeaters and hear dead silence. And 70cm usage is almost non-existent because 95% of the repeaters in southern California are closed/private systems.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KG4RUL on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
My TS2000X has a 1.2GHz Module installed - permanently!

Perhaps what is needed is a plug-in bay in the TS2000 that could accomodate various band modules? You know, like the hot-swap bays in my IBM laptop computer?

The modules could have internal software programming that would be recognized by the main unit and would be used to alter displays, menus, etc. as needed. If they plugged in from the back, they could have appropriate antenna connections, etc.

You could even have more than one bay?

Dennis KG4RUL
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W6TH on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
.
Want more activity on 220 Mhz? ( No problem ).

May I suggest to make it a contest band. Oh yes, this goes for other unused bands as well.

...................As of today....................

Which band shows less activity, 220 Mhz or 28 Mhz?

...................The answer....................

...................28 Mhz........................

.:
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W4KDA on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I agree whole heartedly. I was astonished when I got my license that this was not already available. I thought I was the only one who wanted it. I would love to have a rig like this, and it is very technologically possible, feasable, and practical to make now days. It should also profitable. Chiken and egg for certain, the manufacturers don't see much 222 or 902, so they don't build rigs, but if they did, WE WOULD BUY THEM!!!! :)

-Kyle, W4KDA
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by K0JEG on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
SDRs and Transverters:

http://www.gnu.org/software/gnuradio/

http://tinyurl.com/owz4p (google search for 220 mhz transeverters)

There's lots of stuff out there, and many modern radios will easily interface with transverters, even to the point of changing their display to show the correct frequency.

I'm actually taking a look at the 220MHz band, just because it is there (I climb mountains for the same reasons...). The easist and cheapest way to get on the air will be a transverter connected to my FT-897d. Hopefully I'll learn a little something along the way.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N3OX on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
It wouldn't be profitable because we're not the major market. We may have more hams than Japan, but I bet we don't have more active hams. I would like to have 1.25m in my radio. I've been having fun in the V/UHF contests seeing how far I can work the big guns on 2m and 432... 222 would fill in nicely. We're not going to get it, so I'm looking at the W1VT or W1GHZ transverter plans for an eventual project.

Dan
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N3OX on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
It wouldn't be profitable because we're not the major market. We may have more hams than Japan, but I bet we don't have more active hams. I would like to have 1.25m in my radio. I've been having fun in the V/UHF contests seeing how far I can work the big guns on 2m and 432... 222 would fill in nicely. We're not going to get it, so I'm looking at the W1VT or W1GHZ transverter plans for an eventual project.

Dan
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WA1RNE on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I think the analysis is pretty simple;

In the 60's and 70's, 2 meters was the first and most popular FM band, followed by 440's popularity in the 80's. In the 70's and 80's, 2 became very crowded and 440 was really growing. Twenty years or so later, both have ample spectrum available and are now underutilized in most areas. I'm sure there are some exceptions, as there always is, but overall across the U.S., this has become the concensus.


With that history, consider what goes into marketing research. Maybe the manufacturers know something that we don't......like the possibility that we may lose 220 in the near future.


Someone mentioned the Elecraft transverter line. I bet if you were to ask Elecraft which transverter has the lowest sales it would be the 220 version hands down.


On that premise, it's not likely that an OEM would see any ROI by adding 220 to an HF + VHF/UHF/1.2gig rig. The marketing analysis has to predict an upward growth forecast. The margin on amateur gear is pretty low to begin with, so adding features that have a risky product life will never likely see the light of day.



Chris, WA1RNE

 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KC7QDO on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
It is ashame that there is not allot of activity on 222 that is for sure.

I have a old commercial repeater antenna that I use and I may have made about 10 contacts in the past 2 years since I got on the band.

Now even less of the manufacures are making rigs for 222 I think ADI quit making theirs and when it comes down to end at the end of the day if it is not making them money they stop that line of radio.

But at least there are still a few of us that will make contacts on two and go to 222 in CN87 just to make noise up there.

The band is allot like two in range but seems to knife edge the hills better and better bouncing like UHF but with out the path loss.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N1HO on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I took the 50MHz module out of my Yaesu FT-736R when I bought both the 220 and 1296MHz modules for it; I later bought an Icom IC746Pro to get back on 6m, and the duplication of 2m is just an added bonus. I also bought an all-mode brick for 220 as well.

So, would I like to see an all-mode rig that covers 222? Certainly!! My FT-736R is very nice but it is, frankly, an older design, and its receiver doesn't compare too well to the newer rigs out there today.

Most of the major/interesting HF rigs nowadays also offer 6m capability. It would be interesting to me to see this complemented with a VHF/UHF rig that covers the 144, 222, 432 (meaning 420-450, BTW), 902, and 1296 MHz., either all-at-once, or modularly as with the FT736R scheme.

Don't forget that we've already lost 220-222MHz, although it's not apparent to me as to _why_, as there seems to be little use of that band. Remember that UPS lobbied long and hard for it, and then discarded it at about the same time that it was granted. Too bad "use it or lose it" doesn't apply to commercial interests.

Granted, my interests are primarily weak-signal/narrow bandwidth, e.g., CW and SSB, but we should/could be making heavier use of 222 for packet, particularly for longer-haul links and gateways that would be usable for emergency communications, etc. Moving a lot of the Winlink telnet traffic up there (and to a higher speed) might be one step, for example.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KA2LIM on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
(And those options would have to be "user installable," not just added by trained technicians.) Modular assembly would be a good way to go about it, but be able to include all the modules from 6 M on up to atleast 1.2 GHz, without swapping modules. Soulds like a tall order, though.

Yaesu did that years ago in the form of a FT-736R and they are still bringing top dollar on the used market. And, the module's for the FT-736R selling for more than they did new. Too bad the manafacture's are missing this.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WB2WIK on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
There already was one rig that covered 50-144-222-432-1296 (pick four out of these five) MHz, and I have one: The FT-736R.

If it had a large enough market, it would probably still be on that market. Yaesu discontinued it after a several-year run because it didn't sell well enough to sustain continued manufacturing. And it's not a bad rig: I've had mine since it was new in '87 and it's never failed -- it's also almost never "off."

I suspect that all the manufacturers watched that story closely and decided not to do this again. Although the 736R was quite expensive (with four band modules, it was in the $2000 and up range), and Yaesu sold them for several years, I understand it was never profitable.

People who aren't involved in equipment manufacturing as a trade often underestimate the enormous cost of putting a product on the market in a way that customers will actually be satisfied. A big part of the formula is to work out the bugs first, before selling the first unit, and then to have distributors (or the factory -- or somebody!) be fully stocked with the equipment so it can be shipped immediately against orders, for at least the first few hundred systems. A few hundred 3-4 band weak-signal VHF-UHF multimode rigs with reasonably good performance and the most needed features will cost more than half a million dollars to produce and get into distributors' hands (or even build for factory stock) -- and that doesn't include the original R&D budget.

WB2WIK/6

 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N6TZ on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
After I had made a posting that is about 10 postings above this one, I begin to think......

Does anyone know what or who is using the spectrum that was taken from ham use of the lower half of the 220 band years ago?

Originally it was to be some kind of UPS tracking system, but that did not fly. The higher frequency spread spectrum linking systems beat it out of the box from what I understood.

We have several active 220 repeaters here in So. California, and here in Ventura County we use 223.5 simplex as our intercom to exchange everything from DX tips to "Hi, how are you", to "where to get a good burrito".

Earlier my posting said:
(There is sure an attitude that the FCC is going to take the 220 band from us for some other use. I would like to know what other use?

If any of you have visited hill-top comm sites in recent years, you will have seen a lot of empty racks in the rooms and old fibre-glass collinears laying on the ground in back of the buildings.

This is all a result of cell phone and wi-fi/wi-max technology taking over. The times, they are a changing!! )

Hal, N6TZ

 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KC0SHZ on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
It would be a great radio for tech class licensees who don't want to go into HF and would facilitate learing code as you could practice on bands that are regional in coverage, so a group in one city that wanted to work on CW could find a simplex frequency on 2 meters and do CW.

Most techs, including myself, don't buy radios that do ssb or cw. Looking back, I would have taken that option had there been one.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W0IPL on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I got a synthesized 220 rig over twenty five years ago (you remember Drake don't you?). The 220 segment is grossly underutilized in the Denver metro area. You have to go to such places as Los Angeles and NYC to find the band really used.

Based on the above, what is the economic feasability of the rig mentioned? - - Almost zero. - - Same reason there are so few 220 rigs today.

Wish all you want but manufacturers do their thing for money. Money that is not in what you are wishing for.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KE5EXX on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I began VHF rovering in January 2006 and so far have participated in 4 VHF or UHF contests.

I currently run 6 bands and hope to add 2304 for the Jan 07 VHF contest.

I am regularly amazed at the range and quality of 222. Even tho I use a Down East Microwave transverter to get to 222 on an Icom 706, I would certinly be interested in an all mode 50/144/222/432+ radio.

Who as pull with a big radio mfg??

73's de KE5EXX
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WA9SVD on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
With all due respects, "interchangable modules" is a poor idea; so is the Kebonedhead idea of making the UT-20 module in the TS-2K not user installable. Such modules were user installable in the TM-642/742 series, AND the venerable TS-790A. The modules should all be available at all times, and user-installable.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by 3CX800A7 on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
In Japan, and many other Asian countries, 222 to 225 MHz falls smack dab in the middle of one of their "Public Safety" allocations. Their may be a governmental proviso discouraging Yaesu, Icom, and Kenwood from marketing a 222 to 225 MHz transceiver in our IARU Region. As someone else pointed out earlier, 222 to 225 MHz is NOT limited to the United States and Canada. It is in active useage in Mexico, Central American, Carribean, and there is a resurgance of interest in Brazil. The Brazilians are using transverters for the most part.

Outside of Asia, in Germany, and other European countries, 222 to 225 MHZ is allocated to subscription radio broadcasting. Fixed (not satellite) stations transmit music, news, and other informational services to automobiles with the correct licesne key and authorized receiver to unlock reception.

Why would Japan risk their own public safety band when there are literally hundreds, if not thousands, of clowns in the United States whose first procedural action upon buying any HT or mobile -- is to "open up" the radio for transmissions outside of the amateur service? No, I am not one of those idiots. I can already anticipate the hostile reaction my post will receive. Okay, let me really get your goat (I am addressing the wankers, not the good people):

1) You are NOT allowed to transmit on any frequency you want to just because there is an emergency and you have a ham license. In fact, a fellow in San Mateo CA did just that. The nature of the emergency was not disclosed but the sheriff's department confiscated his radios and never returned them. In addition, he received a $3,000 fine and a NAL from the FCC. I am not making this up.

2) If the only real emergency most of you will ever experience in your lifetime is one that occurs within the firmament of your very own Depends.

3) If there's a genuine emergency, your last words will be, "Honey, is this milk past expiry?" About a second later your eyes will roll back into your head and you will lose consciousness from radiation poisoning.

The real reason (one of them) for the lack of 222 MHz and other VHF activity is RESTRUCTURING. You can thank K1ZZ, W5YI, WB6NOA, et al for that. Everyone got a "free upgrade" and migrated to HF where they received their first taste of ionospheric propagation. Hence, they never returned to VHF. The ARRL VHF contests are dead, the repeaters are dead (the scourge of ham radio, thank god!), and there is little-to-no-random weak signal activity thanks to the aforementioned reasons. No, nets don't count!

What the heck is the point of a "weak signal net" when most weak signal work is point-to-point anyway? I don't want to listen to some type-A control freak take check-ins for 45 minutes, followed by pink noise, while no one contributes anything of ANY value. They just drop their call and leave. Oh, and they get a nice wall certificate for net participation. How lame is that?

If one attempts to call CQ on 144.200, they are yelled at. That's very encouraging to newcomers. Yes, I'm sure there's going to be a big 'E' opening in the middle of October at 10 PM. *rolls eyes*

Those whom have been around for a while KNOW that I am speaking the truth ... and it's painful. I am not an OF. I am under 40 years old and qualify for QCWA (yuck).

We can also thank the FCC for the shaky UPS Audio Compandered SSB fiasco.

Get on the air!

Of course, my contribution has absolutely NO VALIDITY because I didn't post with my callsign.

My callsign begins with "Four Quebec Two". How's that?

IMMARSAT, WinStink, CDMA multiplexing, 20 kHz bandwidth data emissions on an already jam packed 14 MHz allocation, blueberry, dingleberry ...

Isn't it lovely?
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WB2AMU on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Check out this recent auction for the ICOM 375 all mode 220 MHz radio that was made in the 1980s...it went for almost $3000!!! The radio is OK according to most but is it worth $3000? Maybe because there is nothing else around???

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ih=011&item=320009616788&rd=1&sspagename=STRK%3AMEWA%3AIT&rd=1
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by K2WH on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Forget about 220 mhz. Right now the easiest and cheapest band to get on is the 33cm or 900 mhz band. Rigs currently cost about $ 50 for a handheld to $ 150 for a mobile rig. Both rigs are made by Motorola, are available in droves on Ebay, built lik a brick S__thouse and simply need to be re-programmed. Repeater coverage is about equal to 440 mhz.

Try 33cm.

K2WH
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N6AJR on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
by the way they do build 220 gear today, alinco dr-235, kenwood th-f6 tribanderand alinco dj -296, are the 3 I own, and there is a bunch of 220 activity here in northern calif. more than you would think, enough that it is hard to get a 220 repeater pair coordinate and available.

its not a waste land, just not as busy as 2m. most folks on 220 are some what more experianced, and have other bands available. most folks don't start with a tri band ht with 220 on it for their first radio.

It is just one more band to play with. I played AO-40 till it broke, did some leo sats, and still do some packet, along with contesting on uhf, vhf and 220 plus HF, some dxing and rag chewing. I even have some sstv stuff. there is lots to do on ham radio.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W5AK on September 17, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I too would love a GOOD VHF/UHF radio with the bands mentioned. Unlike what WB2WIK/6 stated, the FT 736R was a good seller because of the OSCAR 13 satellite. That was an OK radio with a fairly weak receiver (it needed a preamp) and power supply problems. I think the secret to a really solid VHF/UHF rig is to design a good IF system then add really solid modules for additional bands. By that, I mean modules that have low receiver noise figures and decent gain. Unfortunately AMSAT has become a flacid driver of VHF radio design. If one of the AMSAT groups could only get a high orbital bird up that really worked, the manufacturers would respond. Who would not want to work big time DX from their apartment balcony on satellites? So, I believe that successful AMSAT work will open up a new world to lots of hams to VHF and UHF. It did for me in 1976 when OSCAR 6 was so much fun.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KG6TT on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Personally, I am not big on 'one rig does it all'. First of all monitoring on one band becomes impossible when you are on another (well some rigs can do a few bands at once... sort of). Also, I never liked having myself that vulnerable... trouble in rig and you are off the air... totally. Lastly, these multi-band HF/VHF/UHF rigs are terribly expensive.

My choice is to have separate my HF from my VHF and my VHF from my UHF. Although there may not be a lot of 220 MHz choices, I managed to find a nice rig. Oh, it isn't exactly new but then again neither are nearly all my other rigs, yet they work and look like new... Just took some time and some patience.

73,
Jerry, KG6TT
Fairfield, CA
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KB9CRY on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I would love to see on the commercial market an all mode radio with the 144, 222, 440, 1.2 GHz


It's already here, called a Yaesu FT-736R. I've got two; works like a champ.

Phil
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KG4RUL on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
WA9SVD writes:

"With all due respects, "interchangable modules" is a poor idea; so is the Kebonedhead idea of making the UT-20 module in the TS-2K not user installable. Such modules were user installable in the TM-642/742 series, AND the venerable TS-790A. The modules should all be available at all times, and user-installable."

I don't understand your post at all. First you say that interchangeable modules are a "poor idea" - Then you say modules should be user-installable.

Dennis KG4RUL
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W5TD on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
"Lastly, these multi-band HF/VHF/UHF rigs are terribly expensive."

You can buy a brand new FT857D for less than $700. I recently picked up a used FT100D from a dealer for $549. You can find similar deals on used FT857 and Icom 706mKIIG. How much cheaper do you want?

73s John W5TD

 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N9SIU on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
It seems that 220 MHz is a vast waste land in the radio spectrum for US Hams. Most of the time there has been little choice in types of 220 MHz radios to choose from and those were usually expensive.

I do use my 220 MHz radios, an HT and mobile, around the Indianapolis area and there are a few repeaters that do have some use on a regular basis. One repeater system in particular 224.800-(K9XV) is tied into a 440 MHz and a 2M system. You can talk to a good number of Hams just about anytime of the day especially when going to or leaving the work place. The 220 MHz repeater is located at the Indiana Government Center and can be accessed inside the complex on low power and it works very well.

A good all mode transceiver would be nice for 220 MHz but the way the radios are pretty low in priority for most radio manufactures. However it would be nice to play with one when there was a band opening.

Bob N9SIU
Greenwood, IN
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W2RAC on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Someone needs to bring back a rig like the Yeasu FT-736r!
Stock 2 and 432 with optional 6, 220, 1.2. And an 902 option would be wonderfull. But since there has never been "amateur" 902 gear I doubt we will ever see that.

There are plenty 706's, 2000's, 847's, 857's, 897's, 100d's out there and many others. And they do most of the normally used bands, but I would like to see a simple made 222/902 transverter.

Many hams who are serious do use transverters. DEMI and others make nice equipment, and with a "base" rig like a Pro3 with bandscope make for a NICE setup.

Richard W2RAC
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WB2WIK on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
>RE: More Comments on 220 MHz Reply
by KB9CRY on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I would love to see on the commercial market an all mode radio with the 144, 222, 440, 1.2 GHz


It's already here, called a Yaesu FT-736R. I've got two; works like a champ.

Phil<

::Me, too. But the problem is, Yaesu discontinued it several years ago. If they brought it back today, it might sell better than it originally did!

WB2WIK/6
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W7ROY on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
MY COMMENT COMES FROM THE ASPECT THAT OUR CLUB WAS GIVEN A COMPLETE 220-222 MHZ TRUNKED ACSB SYSTEM. I HAVE BEEN SEARCHING THE FCC AND FIND THAT ALMOST HALF OF WHAT WAS ISSUED FOR LICENSES ARE CANCELED OR INACTIVE. WE GAVE UP FOR THE BETTERMENT OF TECHNOLOGY AND IT HAS NOT BEEN USED. THEY OUGHT TO GIVE IT BACK! THERE ARE SEVERAL 220 HAM REPEATER SYSTEMS HERE IN UTAH AND THEY ARE GREAT.

W7ROY
P.S. IF ANYONE KNOWS OF A USER OF EF JOHNSON 220 I HAVE THE SYSTEM WITH DUPLEXERS/COMBINERS/CIRCULATORS THAT CAN BE HAD CHEAP.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W5TD on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
"It's already here, called a Yaesu FT-736R. I've got two; works like a champ.

Phil<

::Me, too. But the problem is, Yaesu discontinued it several years ago. If they brought it back today, it might sell better than it originally did!

WB2WIK/6"

But not at the price it originally sold for. We are much too cheap today. Think it went for about $1700 with just the 2 and 440 modules. The 222 module was $309, and the 1.2g module was $500. Too bad you couldn't fit all 5 modules into it.

73s John W5TD
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by 3CX800A7 on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Someone get on the horn immediately to Jun Hasegawa and plead on their hands and knees for a transceiver that covers 222 to 225 MHz MULTI-MODE. Keep bugging him until he caves in! ;-)

What most folks don't realize is that a totally separate PA module is required for 222 MHz in coverage in ANY transceiver, i.e. DC-to-Daylight or specialty niche. It would drive the street cost through the roof. It's a funky allocation. You can't use the same 144/432 PA modules for the 222 MHz region. You can't squeeze water out of rocks like Thales.

I'm not trying to be discouraging. Just pointing out facts.

As an aside, I heard an anectdotal report that Kenwood was all set to introduce a 902 to 928 MHz FM rig in the US Market about 15 years ago. The rep appeared at the SCRRBA meeting but his impromptu visit wasn't on the agenda. Therefore, he wasn't allowed to speak. I can't confirm the veracity of that story. It sounds plausible. I will repeat it here simply to annoy the repeater coordinating council. If true, may it disturb and plague their dreams at night. Not that I'm interested in FM but that would have been pretty darn cool. I would have bought one! Granted, it was probably the wrong venue to introduce the idea and/or gain marketing feedback at the last minute. Perhaps the guy had only one weekend in the States and to fly home to Japan? They could have given him the floor for two seconds. That's how type-A control freaks function, though. They are incapable of seeing beyond their own selfish agenda. It's the antonym of syncretic, holistic, and ecumenical. Maybe I should drink less coffee?

222 MHz is a GREAT band, no doubt about it. Less cosmic noise than 144 MHz, fewer square wave harmonics from the NCR cash register emitting from WalMart five miles down the road, and no AWACS radar swooshes during in-flight training missions.

There's the marginal possibility of sporadic-E on 222 MHz. That's something I'd like to experience at least once in my lifetime. I've done just about everything else. I feel jaded. Hehehheheh.

It's bizarre ... sometimes signals will be MUCH stronger on 222 MHz than 144 MHz or 432 MHz -- all things considered (equivalence). I think it has something to do with the geometry within the tropo duct.

Too bad it's a public safety band in Asia and now dedicated to DBS in most of Europe.

But darn it ... it's our "secret" watering hole. At least the local nutcases think that no one can hear them on 223.5 MHz FM. Ohhhh, where is my spy decoder ring?

I'd like to find a 1-1/4 meter Gonset Gooneybird with the magic tuning eye.

Okay, *everyone* sing to the tune of the Kingston Trio:

"Where Have All the Gonsets Gone?"

Actually, I culled that title from another source (author unknown).

There was a dude in Denmark that had an STA to conduct EME experiments on 222 MHz. That guy was dead-on serious, too. He built an Eimac-design 8877 amp and everything. His STA has long since expired. 222 MHz is a tremendous EME band but alas it's our IARU region only.

902 MHz is great as well. It is NOT the junk band that most perceive it to be.

Yup, it's rather wild that all those 220 MHz SEACO systems died a quiet death and there are very few license renewals. The FCC really munched it on that whole fiasco: UPS, Gulf of Texas SEACO, and so on.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by K2ZN on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I just recently did my part - picked up an old non-functional Drake UV-3. With a bit of TLC, it's running as good as new. Unlike the newer rigs, this one actually has front end filtering for each band, which makes a world of difference.

Al, K2ZN
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by K1CJS on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
A rig something like the one the author proposes would be nice--but who would buy it? It seems like the hams who could afford new equipment like this rather spend big bucks on the newest HF rigs. There aren't too many hams who could afford the described rig willing to actually buy one.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WB2WIK on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
>RE: More Comments on 220 MHz Reply
by W5TD on September 18, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
"It's already here, called a Yaesu FT-736R. I've got two; works like a champ.

Phil<

::Me, too. But the problem is, Yaesu discontinued it several years ago. If they brought it back today, it might sell better than it originally did!

WB2WIK/6"

But not at the price it originally sold for. We are much too cheap today. Think it went for about $1700 with just the 2 and 440 modules. The 222 module was $309, and the 1.2g module was $500. Too bad you couldn't fit all 5 modules into it.

73s John W5TD<

===========================

That's exactly the problem. Many think that VHF multimode rig should sell for $599, like an IC-718, and it never could because all the parts are more expensive. To make matters worse, RF filtering has to be much *BETTER* for VHF-UHF operation than for HF, because of Part 97 requirements specifying spurious including harmonics must be >60 dB below carrier power. That's not an easy requirement, and made tougher for a multi-band rig or one that runs any power. I bought my IC-736R with the 50 and 220 MHz modules, new in '87 for about $2300. It came "standard" with the CW-Narrow filter, which I didn't expect...it was just "there" when I opened the rig. I bought the CW keyer module later, for another $60 or something like that.

If you convert $2300 in 1987 dollars to 2006 dollars, this rig should now sell for about $3200.

How many are going to run out and buy it?

WB2WIK/6
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WB2WIK on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Oops, correction: FT-736R, not IC!

(Did own an IC-736 once, though...no "R"...too many model numbers!)
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by K0KN on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Put me down for two of those $100.00 transverters!
If the cost for an HT or transverter is about the same, that's an easy choice for me - I'll take all mode capability vs. FM only ANY day!

As for the lack of equipment, you're all correct, it is a vicious circle. It's up to all of us to do something about it, or risk losing some or all of the allocation.

I'm not yet active on 222, but our club did decide to
start experimenting on 902-928.

We put a 902/928 Repeater on the air in our town, to encourage activity on this band. The Greater Kansas City area now has two 902/928 repeaters with great coverage of the city.

I purchased and modified the commercial radios for our repeater, and found that radios for 902 are cheap, and easy to modify. I've learned quite a bit in the process, and have had some fun along the way.


73,

Kyle Yoksh
K0KN
Olathe, Kansas
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by N1HLE on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
i would love a good all band radio that covers 220 as well.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KF4HR on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Here's my .02 on 220...

I ignored the band for years; first our allocation years ago 220-225, and then 222-225mhz. I even had a 220 module in my FT-736R for nearly 20 years and never used it! (By the way, it was previously stated that a loaded FT-736R was $2K new. Not true. If you added the 220 module, 1.2ghz module, ATV interface, and the other misc options it was closer to $3K. Believe me; I bought mine new.)

Then last year I bought a 220 antenna, connected it to my FT-736R. Not expecting to hear anything, I was surprised to find there was occasional activity on the band! Not nearly as active as 2 meters, but... Then I realized there were numerous 220 repeaters scattered about. The next thing you know I have 220 FM rigs in every vehicle I own, and several spares! 220 is great! Intermod problems? Nope! 6 or 8 people waiting for their "turn" to speak? Not that I've ever seen! Heck many 220 repeaters don't even use a encode tone in my area (DC); how amazing is that?

Now-a-days I'm on 220 more than 2 or 440. It's quiet most of the time so one-on-one hour long qso's are a regular occurance. (When is the last time you've had a long one-on-one qso on your 2 meter repeater?) On occasion someone new will pop in..., and you'll be surprised! Unlike popular 2 meter repeaters which can become rapid-fire-hand-offs and it becomes a challenge to remember "who goes next" - 220 seems to lend itself to more to easy-going rag-chewing. On a rare occasion (contest weekends for sure) you can hear 220 SSB stations too.

The only down side of going to 220 was trying to find decent equipment. I initially purchased an Alinco DR235T but I wasn't happy, so I sold it. I found out there's several older models that work very well.

As for 220 all-mode rigs; there's only two that I know of; a properly equipped FT-736R and the ICOM IC-375. And yes, there's 220 SSB activity on occasion, and always during VHF contests. Transverters are another good option.

Bottom line - 220, try it, you'll like it!
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WI7B on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!

I like the idea of more 33 cm activity. For $14.95 or less you can convert older cordless phones for low-power operation. Personally, I operate a repeater-coordinated 903.3 MHz SSTV beacon using with an external PA and commercial 5dBi antenna.

At the same time, our wide-area 2m/23cm/IRPL repeater network utilized 220 MHz radios as permanent links between counties. So, I'd say 220 MHz is NOT under utilized locally. Although its activity may be hidden from most hams...even those using it!

73,

---* Ken
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W5TD on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
"If you convert $2300 in 1987 dollars to 2006 dollars, this rig should now sell for about $3200.

How many are going to run out and buy it?"

Steve,

I agree completely. That is the problem with trying to bring new equipment to market. Everyone wants something for nothing. There was some guy on QRZ.COM trying to get 10,000 signatures on a petition to send to Icom, Kenwood, and Yaesu to make a 222 FM rig because he though the $249 that Alinco was charging was too much.

I heard that Icom lost alot of money on the 375A, and I believe it. They never made 222mhz gear (even for FM) after that. It is easy to get on eham.net and say I want this rig-but how many people will actually put the money out for it if and when it does come out? Probably alot less.

Too bad they don't make a followup to the 736R. The FT847 was an embarassment as the (supposed) replacement for the 736.

73s John W5TD
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W9BBB on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I Been on 220 mhz since the mid 70's. The band is full of surprises and the propogation is better than 440.
Another nice thing is its quiet. I wished the FCC would return the first two megs back to us.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KB9GIG on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
i have been on 220 now for around 7 years and i see a band growing with new repeaters coming on line.
we have a new repeater in this area just went on line this year here in central illinois.
But i wanted more i wanted ssb as well as fm and i wanted to use my ft 847 so i talked to a freind of mine bruce wilson of wilson enginering who is also a ham interested in 220, and he built a transverter that will interface to ANY 2 meter radio and requires only a few watts to drive the model he built for me puts out 80 watts on fm and 100 watts on ssb.
the receive section is EXTRA sensitive and and the unit has a preamp control switch on the front so can run a mast mounted preamp.
It has variable power and a built in power supply so i dont have to run it from my shack power supply,and best of all it easily interfaces to any 2 meter radio.so now i can use my ft 847 for the 220 band.
he also builds lower power units if you just want 30 watts or evn 7 watts,i enjoyed it so well i had him build me an amplifier for the 220 band it puts out 250 watts and uses an easy to find inexpensive 4cx250r ceramic tube,and is microprocessor controled so i cant dump it into a high standing wave or accidently overdrive it.
i didnt intend for this to bean advert. i just wanted to let you guys know of one direction i took to getting on this great band.
he builds ham gear for blind hams and loves the hobby as i do,so you might try talking to him if you have an idea of what you want,ill bet he could help
his information is
BRUCE WILSON (kb9lvd)
WILSON INGINEERING
217-234-2357



thanks for taking interest in the 220 band
JOHN STAFFORD (KB9GIG)
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W4KVW on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
My backup rig is a Yaesu 857D & I do not use even the 440 band(do not own an antenna nor have interest in one if it were FREE)I use it just for2 meters & some 6 meter qso's.Have NO use for 440,220 & 1.2 gig bands.I prefer a small amount of 2 meter activity,some 6 meter & a WHOLE BUNCH of good ole band is always open HF action for my usage.Thats my 2 cents but I know others would enjoy such a rig & hope for them maybe someone may build such a rig one day AGAIN.W4KVW
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by K0RGR on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Well, at least three manufacturers make commercial transverters for 222 Mhz. - Elecraft, SSB Electronics, and Down East Microwave.

The Elecraft units are particularly intriguing. These are kits, of course, and they have stackable xverts for 6, 2, 222, and 432. When mated to one of their HF transceiver kits, the transverters automatically switch as you change bands. That's about as good as having an integrated unit.

Maybe we can start a revolution. Instead of FM, everybody try doing SSB on 222. I think you'll be amazed at the coverage.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W5TD on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
"Maybe we can start a revolution. Instead of FM, everybody try doing SSB on 222. I think you'll be amazed at the coverage. "

Unfortunately, we can't get most people off of FM on 2 meters to give SSB a try there.

73s John W5TD

 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by 3CX800A7 on September 19, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Dear John KB9GIG,

Thank you for generously sharing that information with us. I mean that with all sincerity.

> KB9GIG wrote:

i just wanted to let you guys know of one direction i took to getting on this great band.
he builds ham gear for blind hams and loves the hobby as i do,so you might try talking to him if you have an idea of what you want,ill bet he could help
his information is
BRUCE WILSON (kb9lvd)
WILSON INGINEERING
217-234-2357
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KF4HR on September 20, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I own a FT-736R with 220 and 1.2ghz modules. Love the radio, but it is aging. I've heard Yaesu would prefer not to repair them anymore, (although I'm not sure how true that is).

Even though I had 220 capability, I ignored the band for years - up until last year. One day I got curious and put up a 220 antenna. I found there were numerous [quiet] repeaters located all around the northern Virginia area that provided excellent coverage! And even several 220 repeaters in southern portions of Virginia. I was hooked!

Now-a-days I'm using 220 more than 2 meters. It's quiet, there's no intermod, no trying to figure out "who's next" and thanks to the hard work of several repeater owners, the coverage is fantastic!

As for 220 gear - that's the pitfall. Unless you want an Alinco DR235T (and I didn't), or HT, your choices limited. I ended up buying older Kenwood tribanders, a TM-331A single band, and a real old ICOM IC-37A for my vehicles. I've been satisfied with them all.

But since this thread slanting towards potential NEW GEAR - here's my 2 cents...

I want to see the Big-3 build a replacement for the FT-736R...

BIG 3... LISTEN UP!!!

Design a base station radio which would come standard with the most popular 2 and 70cm bands, all-mode. Add THREE internal slots for optional 6, 220, and 1.2ghz modules. Add full duplex satellite capability, dual frequency display, a real time band scope that works on all bands (internal CRT or external plug-in PC monitor), IF-DSP, and most importantly - add at least 6 transverter ports (connections) that would allow the user to connect; 33cm, 13cm, 9cm, and 3cm transverters - with the ability to fine-tune the RF drive level for each transverter port individually. Each port would be programmable to a specific IF (2, 440 or 1.2ghz) frequency at the touch of a button on the front panel, and the display would be programmable to show the actual transverter frequency.

Your design cost would be mostly rapped up with the basic radio platform, with lesser amounts in the modules (as required by world market). And users would be free to experiment with other name brand transverters; SSB Electronic, Kuhue, etc, as they wish. And since you don't have to build the transverters - your design costs are lower and just provide us the platform.

Ok, Kenwood - Yeasu - ICOM... go design the thing! (I volunteer to be a beta tester!)
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KC0THF on September 20, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
What really is interesting is how the manufacturer's can build an HF-70 cm rig that is small enough to take just about anyway but they cannot put the same thing into a larger rig like the 756 Pro's and the new FT-2000. Something doesn't sound right here or is it just me? I think if you are going to spend $1500 -$3500 or even up to $13000 for the top of the line models, it should be able to do all the commonly used bands.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KF4HR on September 21, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
KC0THF - I agree! Perhaps the manufacturers see radios like the 756 series, and FT-2000 as specialized (HF & 6 only). The 756 radios have a "Dual Watch" function, but they don't have the ability to monitor two different bands at once. Since they can only use one band at a time, perhaps manufacturers think it would be a shame to have such a rig parked on a 2 meter FM repeater. The answer would be to add "dual band watch" capability, similar to the Kenwood TS-2000.

I know one thing for sure though. The first manufacturer that builds an all-mode radio that has 1.8mhz thru 1.2ghz (including optional 220), adds a nice band scope, IF-DSP, full duplex satellite capability, makes it easy to use higher frequency transverters, can monitor two different bands at once, and is digital ready - will get my business, and my current gear will be gone! COME ON.... 756ProIV! :))
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WA9SVD on September 21, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Dennis,
I worded that poorly:

WHat I object to are "optional modules" that must be either factory instaslled or require installation at a reapair station, by a "qualified technician" in K'woods words.
The modules would have to be USER installable, as in the TM7642/742, or the TS-790.

What I would also object to would be having to swap out modules to change bands; i.e., remove a 6 M module to insert, say a 900 MHz module, and then have to do the reverse to get back on 6 M. The radio should have bays for ALL the modules at the same time, even if some are left empty by user choice. But it would be imperative to have all the bands immediately available from the front psnel, and already installed. Otherwise, ease of use and especially reliability would suffer,
73
Larry WA9SVD
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by W5TD on September 21, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
One reason that the 756PRO and FT2000 series don't include 2 meters or UHF is that most of the hams purchasing those rigs don't want it. I remember seeing some posts that complaining that the 7800 was going to have 6 meters on it.

These rigs are bought by serious HF operations (at least initially at the new prices) and adding additional bands just opens up the receiver more for noise and IMD products.

The ideal HF/VHF/UHF rig would be a ham bands only on HF, with a low first IF (around 9mhz or so) and very narrow roofing filters at that IF. That would eliminate AM and FM, but most of use could live without that. 6 meters, 2 meters, and whatever else could then be added as internal modules (which would really be a transverter) which would use the 10 meter band as an IF for the module. The modules would also be ham bands only, to eliminate intermod and such. This is similar to what Yaesu did with the FT767, except that it was a general coverage rig on HF, with a first IF in the 70mhz range.

73s John W5TD
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by WB3IGR on September 23, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I AGREE... AND ALL MODE 144 MHZ THROUGH 1.2 GHZ COMMERCIALLY BUILT RADIO BY KENWOOD, ICOM, YAESU, OR ANY OF THE OTHER MFG'S. COME ON WAKE UP!! AND WITH THE NEW "NO-CODE" TECH'S THERE SURE WOULD BE A MARKET FOR THEM, AND AT A LOW PRICE, SAY ABOUT 500 TO 800.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KB0RDL on September 24, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I think there would be a good market for a 2 meter, 222, 440 triband mobile. I would have one in a heartbeat. I currently have a Alinco 222 single-band mobile.

However, practically speaking, repeater traffic is down so much relative to, say, 10 years ago that I would wounder how much use 222 would actually get. In the Kansas City area most of 440 is dead, along with substantial section of 2 meter. It seems to be in the large metro areas, like Los Angeles, Chicago, the SF Bay Area and similar places where 222 has a following simply because all of the 2 meter and 440 band pairs are taken and there's nothing else left. 222, however, does allow for a bit more privacy than other bands simply because so few people have them and most scanners exclude that part of the band.
 
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by N0XMZ on September 24, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Multi-band, multi-mode rigs for V/UHF?? Heck we can't even get the manufacturers to make a multi-mode single or dual-band rig for V/UHF (except the IC-910 that costs a fortune).

For SSB on 2m & 70cm, DC-daylight rigs like the '706 and now the 7000 is about all we're gonna get.
 
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by 3CX800A7 on September 25, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Most everyone seems to have missed my previous very important point:

You can't just add 222 MHz to a "DC-to-Daylight" radio for the sheer heck of it.

IT REQUIRES A SEPARATE PA SECTION!!!

Mitsubishi stopped manufacturing 222 MHz modules and there are no substitutes that I am aware of.

I'll say it again:

IT REQUIRES A SEPARATE PA SECTION!!!

Go up to the chalk board and write the above 1000 times, Charlie Brown.

That's the primary reason there's no 222 MHz TX capability included with the utilitarian "do all" boxes such as the TS-2000, out-of-production FT-847, etc.



 
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by W7ROY on September 28, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I WOULD LIKE TO ECHO ALL OF THE POS. COMMENTS ABOUT THE 220 BAND. I HAVE ENJOYED IT A LOT OVER THE YEARS. I HAVE HAD 220 FOR ABOUT 15 YEARS AND I SALT LAKE AT ONE TIME THERE WAS A GOOD SIZED GROUP OF USERS ON THE IREAN SYSTEM. WE ALSO HAVE THE SINBAD SYSTEM IN SO. EAST UTAH THAT USES THIS BAND. ALSO IF ANY REPEATER USERS NEED I JUST PLACED AN AD HERE FOR A REPEATER COMBINER SYSTEM THAT WILL ALLOW 5 REPEATERS ON 1 ANTENNA.
W7ROY
 
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by KC2WI on September 30, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Having never used 220 I guess I don't really know much about it, but I don't see the big deal.

What do you get that's any different than 144 or 440? Basically the same line of sight propagation. Maybe in some crowded areas the additional spectrum is handy, but other than that I don't see the attraction.

Actually the same with 440. I use 440 once in a while and there happens to be a great linked repeater system (see http://users.adelphia.net/%7Eka2fwn/) near my area, but other than that there's not much difference for the usual local FM comms.

Nothing against techs, but there are some in my area getting all fired up about a 440 repeater that is probably going up. But they will not be working anyone different or doing anything different than on the local 2 meter repeaters. And those repeaters are very quiet already.

So why not try 6 meters simplex phone FM or SSB?

Or better yet, get on the ball and work towards a license upgrade so you can try HF and really do something different.
 
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by KE7DIF on September 30, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Greetings all, I don't know if you have been watching the prices of 220 gear on eBay, but if you have you know the crazy high prices that people are paying for older 220 equipment. That says a lot about the state of 220.

Thanks,
Mike
KE7DIF
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by ONLYON6METERS on September 30, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
kc2wi writes 'Having never used 220 I guess I don't really know much about it, but I don't see the big deal.'-well, that IS the state of amateur radio as a whole. kids can dial up on their cell phone, or talk via text chat or VoIP on their computer ANYWHERE in the world-why would THEY desire to become interested in amateur radio, especially when facing that kind of attitude? you should be encouraging amateurs to do ANYTHING with the frequencies alotted us, not discouraging them from using them-and that goes to you other guys who added remarks discouraging use of the band. what i went through to get into six meters was incredible. you'd have thought i was maybe a leper or something. through my perseverence, and tech class license, i think i put out a pretty good signal there, as well as having a great time! had i listened to the naysayers, i'd probably be one of the wild indians on the CB band. but, instead i decided to prove those naysayers wrong. 220 mHz is a tougher battle, but that is another one of my desires-because of ham radio operators like kc2wi.
 
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by KT9Y on September 30, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
220 is a great band! And what a useful EMCOMM band too! Not too much public service stuff on there and it makes it a great band to use at emcomm events. After reading the posts on this subject, I think I am going to go out any buy a 220 radio. One step closer to using the band more. Now go out and get yours!! :)
73
tim/n9huw
 
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by WA4FOM on September 30, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
I'd definitely like to have a multiband VHF/UHF rig
that covered 144-1296 MHz with all modes (including
AM!). 6m would be nice to have also. It seems like
the "do-it-all-from-DC-to-daylight" radios tend to
get somewhat deaf above 6m, from what most of the
reviews indicate. Having 220 MHz in there would
definitely give me the impetus to use it.
 
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by KA5PIU on September 30, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Hello.

I am not sure about all mode, but.
How about a talkie that can do 10, 6, 4, 2, 220, 440, 900, and 1200?.
AM and FM.
The 10 and 4 meter band can be done by out of banding some radios leaving 220 that some radios already cover.
Only 900 and 1200 are the odd one out, Icom has sold 1200 MHz radios in the US in the past, no real market, same with 900.
In Japan, 1200 MHz is the place to hang.
900 is not open in Japan to hams, it is where the handyphone system is, but the Japanese 1200 rig put out of band will do 900, and 800, and 700, that is why the FCC does not want it in the US.
There is always the little module thing.
It is called a transverter.
 
More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KO1D on October 3, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
Why they don't just remake the old FT 736r and include modules for all bands 6 to 1296 is beyond me. The only argument I ever heard that made sense is that there is no money in 220 or 903 because not everyone has those bands. Still 220 is great band, even better propagation wise to 2m for public service work.
 
RE: More Comments on 220 MHz  
by KE5LIB on October 3, 2006 Mail this to a friend!
by AI2IA on September 16, 2006
"My son and I are both hams. Between us we have two Alinco DR-235Ts and two Alinco DJ280Ts. Because there are two of us, we use 220 MHz whenever we can. It is ghostly quiet, has great building penetrating capapbility, and it is very inviting to easily make your own antennas. Since the antennas are physically small, we have a lot of fun making them.
Why forego using the band when it is there for your use? If nothing else, you and a ham buddy should get yourself each a 220 MHz H/T and use them when you are in an urban environment or for any outdoor purpose. It would be nice to do much more on this band. If kits became available, some of us would do even more."


I agree wholeheartedly. If enough people did this, 220 would open up more.

Mark KE5LIB
 
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