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Reviews Categories | Receivers: Scanners | Bearcat 300 (Electra) Help


Reviews Summary for Bearcat 300 (Electra)
Bearcat 300 (Electra) Reviews: 6 Average rating: 4.7/5 MSRP: $(missing—add MSRP)
Description: 50 channel programmable base and mobile scanner, vintage 1979-1987
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.mods.dk/view.php?ArticleId=992
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ERIEDXER Rating: 5/5 Dec 4, 2013 12:36 Send this review to a friend
A Classic!  Time owned: more than 12 months
One of the highest end synthesized scanners for its time, it was very innovative when it was introduced. These were hand built, most of them in Cumberland Indiana. This scanner is still very useful where I live in Erie, PA as very few services are digital or trunked here. I listen to action on the 300 all the time. My father bought this new in 1980, and it continues to work as it did when new. If you don't need a trunk tracking or digital scanner, these are easy to pick up cheap, they are repairable, they are easy to use and work excellent.
 
VO1MDS Rating: 5/5 Sep 8, 2008 15:22 Send this review to a friend
Great Receiver  Time owned: more than 12 months
Nice scanner,not much i can say that the other folks have not..but i own one of these,there great performers on al bands she has.i had the C-98 problem,fixed it.
Now i have a dead Keyboard,somehow it got shorted,seems somebody sprayed liquid on the front of the radio,and it got between the 3 layers of the internal of the keyboard,affectively shorting it out,now i need a keyboard,cant find one any place,so im going to HOMEBREW a new external keyboard for the scanner,now thats going to be fun let me tell yeah..hihi
But if anyone got a keyboard i love to hear from you,if not then on with the homebrew keyboard.

73 folks take care. nice scanner,worth the time to fix for darn sure.
 
WY0V Rating: 3/5 Mar 11, 2005 10:09 Send this review to a friend
Need BC-300 Manual  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I just picked up a BC-300 at the local Goodwill for $5.00. Where can I download the User Guide? I found a schmeatic but can't seem to locate the user manual online. Thanks, Gary WY0V (e-mail: wy0v@cableone.net )
 
ALEX_NS6Y Rating: 5/5 Feb 10, 2005 07:39 Send this review to a friend
Best. $5. Scanner. Ever.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I got one at a ham club auction for $5, and noticed it had a sticker saying "radio more dead than alive" on it. That's encouraging! I don't have the antenna, manual, funny AC power cord, or the slightest idea how to operate a radio without a VFO knob, but I have a feeling this sucker will teach me.

Last night I decided to see what I could do with it. It has a funny 12V power connector, and ground is a screw on the case. I attached an EZhook and alligator clip to that, and it powered up! I stuck a wire with a stripped end into the RCA jack on the back and got reassuring "static" noises. So, I tuned my IC-2100H to one of those annoying VHF data channels, and entered that freq into this, and it gets that. OK! Since I'm not about to go out and get funny cables and AC cords for this, I'm going to run it off of the same power supply as the 2100H - some case butchery later, it has two banana jacks/tiedown posts attached, in tasteful red and black. For an antenna, I plan to remove the RCA jack and install a panel BNC, but until then, I threaded a wire through the RCA connector and soldered the end to the wire going from center conductor to PCB. The other end of that wire goes to an alligator clip and my aluminum window frame. I put it all back together and it works so far - I haven't tested it on all the frequency ranges yet, but if I can listen to low-band VHF, 6m FM etc that's enough to make me plenty happy! And all it cost me was $5, a few parts I had lying around, and a few inches of solder!

As grubby as this was outside, it's clean inside, and I like how they have the circuit board upside down so the componants are safer from dust. This also has a function where you can trigger a tape recorder to record only when the squelch is broken. Andy, are you listening? There's a lot of room inside for the experimenter to add other circuits if they wish. According to what I've read, this was "da bomb" scanner when I got my ham license in 83, and is still considered one of the all time greats.

It seems to recieve as clearly as my IC-2100H on VHF, and the sound quality is decent. The display is easy to read, and it's easy to enter freqs - a lot of radios kick up a fuss if you don't enter just the right number of digits, this gave me no problems. It's big and heavy and cool, and looks great in my shack/workbench area with one of my soldering iron handpieces sitting on top.
 
KK7AC Rating: 5/5 Jun 15, 2004 13:38 Send this review to a friend
A great classic  Time owned: more than 12 months
Hands down, next to the Realistic 2004/5 series of scanners, this one of the greatest scanning radios of all time.

The Electra Bearcat 300 Service Search used great and much used features that need to be incorparated in current, modern day scanning radios. Inovative features such as large channel capacity (50 channels was alot back then!), aux. carrier switch to hook a recorder directly to the scanner, Non-volatile memory, a clock, channel count, aircraft band, dimmer, 12v and 120v operation, large color contrasted buttons, service search, and a vacuume florescent display. (Please bring back this type of display!! It can be seen in any lighing condition, plus its much easier to see especially at night). The classic "rolling zeros" let you know that you were scanning! It also would show you if you had channels locked out by watching the display. Another great feature now gone....

I have 3 of these radios. The first one I bought and is still my "bedside" scanner (after 20 years of daily operation) was purchased new in April 1984. I have only replaced a capacitor and the display since. The other I bought as they were being pushed out by Uniden in 1987. The other I bought on e-bay for $32 to use as parts (display for the old one, and a logic board for the newer one).

The receiver is THE BEST OF ANY SCANNER RECEIVER I HAVE EVER USED. period. Low band and VHF is unbeatable. I own a slu of vintage Electra Bearcats, regencys and realistics, but this one is indeed the crown jewel of them all. It my not employ the more modern features of todays scanners, but this one is timeless and set the pace for "high end" scanners. And as I said previous, some scanners today need to have a few of the features this one had. Electical construction of these old beauties is not of the quality we see today with modern CMC and wave solder machines. These were "hand built" in the USA or Puerto Rico and by todays standards looks like a birds nest inside. The one advantage to this is that it is very easy to work on and componets are large. Their physical ruggedness using hard plastic buttons and steel/die-cast cabnits and frames make them worth "recovering" if one goes south.

Find these on ebay or ham fest for as little as $40 in good working order. A like new in box with all accories and in good working order should fetch $75 to $100.

I you live in a small area (or dont need to listen to more than 50 channels) that still uses the greatest public safety band of them all (VHF) and want a REAL scanner, look no furthur.

......Please Electra; come back with the rolling zeros again!
 
K6MTT Rating: 5/5 May 11, 2004 15:06 Send this review to a friend
Iron Workhorse  Time owned: more than 12 months
I gave this a 5, based on the radio that it is - not compared to modern scanner features.

The '300 has got to be the most heavily built scanner made. It has 50 channels, in 5 banks. It has what I think is the best VHF-lowband receiver around. VHF-high and UHF are good. It's somewhat susceptable to intermod, but still probably in the upper 1/3 of scanners - there are others way worse. Has a usable tape recorder connection, including a solid state (no relay) switching output that can activate the recorder when the channel is active.

I first got one of these when it was the top of the line in the Bearcat (then Electra Corp., before Uniden) scanner line. It's still a great radio today - I have two of them obtained (cheep!) via eBay. Built like the proverbial brick outhouse, it seems to just go on and on. It makes a good base scanner as it's rather large - but it does also run on 12v DC - handy during a power failure. It has a cool (still my favorite) vacuum florescent display and does the patented (remember the fight over this?) "rolling zeros" display when it scans.

If you find one of these in working shape, then it will probably last forever. There were various glitches along the way and if you find one working, then it's beyond almost all of the issues that would come up.
 


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