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Author Topic: Are we going to lose 220 MHz?  (Read 1551 times)

Posts: 136


« on: December 27, 2002, 05:09:15 PM »

The following is an excerpt from an article on the Mobile Radio Technology website:

 "Lastly, the easiest target of spectrum opportunity may be the 222MHz–225MHz amateur radio allocation. Although radio amateurs have been appropriately vocal in defense of their spectrum, their pleas to leave their 222MHz–225MHz band alone may go unheeded if the FCC receives a petition that proposes a compelling commercial use for the spectrum.

Despite the radio amateurs’ contention that increasing numbers of them were using the 220MHz–222MHz band, the FCC still reallocated it. In the controversial decision, the FCC knowingly disregarded extensive use of the band. The commission referred to a directory for amateur radio repeaters in the 222MHz–225MHz band and ignored weak-signal and inter-city relay operations by amateurs in the lower band segment.

The FCC changed its amateur radio rules to allow entry-level licensees who pass a written exam to use 222MHz–225MHz without taking a Morse code test. But the number of amateurs using that band hasn’t risen as few choices of radio products are available for the band.

Overall, the 220MHz band dangles tantalizing possibilities. Technically, the band offers desirable propagation. It has long been the darling in the eye of the FCC’s technical planners. However, without a complement of suitable equipment manufacturers and without a track record of business success by licensees, the spectrum lies fallow.

With the clamor caused by the Nextel white paper that proposes to displace business and industrial users from their present channels at 800MHz, more attention is being paid to their future spectrum needs. Perhaps a re-born, re-planned 220MHz band is the answer.

The author

Todd Ellis has more than 15 years of experience in the computing and communications industries. As the operations manager for the Telecommunications Division at Booth & Associates, Raleigh, NC, he oversees a staff..."

Well, what do you guys think? Is 220 here to stay for us?

Posts: 628

« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2002, 10:50:36 AM »

Sounds like the enemy is at the gate.  Start melting the lead and join the ARRL. If you don't want to join, they have a frequency defense fund you can contribute to.


Posts: 91

« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2003, 11:11:22 AM »

Had never been on 220 before, until just acquiring a Kenwood TH-F6 tribander HT.  220 is alive and well, and is great!  
Lets encourage the commercial manufacturers to include 220 on their multiband gear.  (it is not permitted in many countries).

Posts: 8

« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2003, 12:40:38 PM »

I hope I can help. I just found and installed a 222MHz module for my FT-736R. Looking forward to FM and SSb contacts. Been interested and now can have another band for VHF DX. Just need to finish building the Yagi antenna. WE WILL NOT LOOSE ANYMORE OF THIS BAND........(I hope).

Bill - KC2GYD

Posts: 1003

« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2003, 03:05:32 PM »

The pity is that Todd is a ham (N2XL) and
has  turned on us.  This is not the
first time, either!

73 de Ronnie


Posts: 3270

« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2003, 10:38:15 PM »

No, we're not going to lose 222-225.  And N2XL is being a jerk.

The last time the FCC ignored all reason and stole the 2 MHz they did, it was due to payola from United Parcel Sevice ... which then abandoned its plans to use the band for its own trucks!  The 2-way industry moved in, but has yet to make any money on the limited allocations they have there.  The 2-way industry includes our local Booth & Assoc. here in Raleigh.  It's shameful to us RTP area hams to have such Benedict Arnolds among us.

Todd think's he's being clever, citing the last failure of the ARRL to keep the whole 5 MHz, as rationale to take the other 3 MHz away.  But now the FCC is the one with egg on its face.  No way they will pull that again, and as evidence, look at the fact (which Todd cleverly omits) that the FCC allows us a MHz of data badnwidth at 219 MHz.  This was to make up for the faux pas they committed.

I'm going to buy a 220 rig tomorrow, just for spite.

Posts: 1

« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2003, 11:10:44 AM »

222Mhz in California is used well but other parts of the country are sparse. Here in Austin, TX, there's a few of us that have started to use the band more frequently and it's showing to work just as well as 2M but without the noise! The repeaters we have aren't much but they work fine and there's plans to put a 222Mhz repeater back up at the 3M building (W3MRC) in austin. Except for Kenwood the prices of 222 rigs are decent, ADI and Alinco have good units (even though ADI is a Kenwood radio). I own the ADI 247 mobile rig and am having an Alinco DJ-280 sent to me at this very moment that another ham wasn't using (recycling!). Ever go to a hamfest and try to use 2M simplex? Try 222Mhz, you'll have no problem with interference.

Dave; a no good, no code Tech.
K5DRH, Round Rock, TX

Posts: 768

« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2003, 02:22:49 PM »

I certainly hope not! I just sunk a couple thousand bucks into 220MHz gear- a Kenwood TM742 triband, an Alinco DJ-280, a Kenwood TH-F6a handheld, a DEMI transverter for weak signal work, and a pair of beam antennas I'm going to pair up! And I plan to build one of the W1GHZ transverter kits also (haven't decided if I'm going to keep it or sell it to some other local ham in hopes of getting him/her on 220 too!) One member of our local club just put up a 220MHz repeater. My opinion? The band is getting more attention this past year than anytime I know of since I was licensed in 1991. To quote the guy selling the W1GHZ transverter kits on E-bay, "we have work to do on 222!". If anyone wants in on a kit, it's not too late, parts are going to be ordered on monday, January 20th, hurry while there's still time! Do a search on E-bay of "completed items" for 222 transverter and e-mail him yourself. He's a W5 call. There is e-mail support for the self/group build. (The kits are designed for the Yaesu FT-817, but may be adapted using your own knowledge and know-how to other radios.)

73, hope to work all on 222 soon!
-Web in Myrtle Beach, SC FM03RK

Posts: 7

« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2003, 12:08:10 AM »

The ARRL WILL NOT help. They rolled over when we lost the band earlier, and will do the same again. Yes, I am a ARRL member, but I remember those days. UPS pulled a BIG trick, and the league didn't help. Now that the lower portion is gone, and the "replacement" band is not accessable, it is only a matter of time before the band is gone to amateurs altogether.

Posts: 9

« Reply #9 on: January 22, 2003, 06:39:11 PM »

I got back into ham a few months ago after a 20 year absence.  I discovered that as a Novice I could now use 220 as well as part of 10 meters for phone.  I ran out and bought a 220 rig and set up in the shack.  There are 2 220 repeaters I can hit in the Houston area.  I have had the radio on on one of them for 3 months and have not heard as single human voice.  CQ calls go unanswered.  Is that the way it is everywhere?  If so, what would the loss be?  Other than the theory that if you give up one thing they will soon take more more.  I remeember the same flap when they gave 11 meters to CB years ago.
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