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Saturday, January 28, 2017

If you think since Trump was elected, we are now 'home free' think again!

From the desk of Paul Stramer

Now is not the time to relax our vigilance and get absorbed into the media propaganda about all the great things Donald Trump is doing that appear to be what the patriot movement wants, and none of this is to suggest that Donald Trump is not absolutely sincere in his efforts to restore freedom in America.

While on the surface it might look like he is making all the right moves, and that his efforts with his pen might change things if carried out long term, there are some flies in the ointment that you need to know about.

To that end I recommend reading these three articles from Brandon Smith at Alt-Market.

How was that for some inside, long range strategy?

Brandon is a personal friend and fellow patriot that I have known for several years. I don't always agree with everything he writes, but in these three articles he has done a very good job showing that we are in a protracted long range war of evil trying to triumph over good, as all of history shows has been going on since the beginning of time itself.  Same old fight, different day, but now with huge advancements in technology that are being harnessed by the forces of evil in every conceivable way.

I would hate to be on the other side of this equation though. I would hate to be one of the elite that sees millions of people waking up, and who are using all the modern innovations in electronics and other tech to oppose the elite from so many different angles and with so many issues. In fact I will go so far as to say that from my own personal observation of being involved in this fight since the 1960s, that without the Internet tools we have been given, and the dedication of the millions of patriots who use them around the world, and of course God's Infinite Mercy, we would have by now surely been slaves in a total police state world wide.

There is another technology that is equally important, if not more important than all the Internet and computer tools for communications that we are using. It is particularly important to your personal safety and well being in your local community setting.

That technology is radio communications, and particularly HAM RADIO.

It took several years of persuasion to convince some of the key patriots around the country that it was critical to get a ham license and to actually start using radio communications to help with everyday logistics, let alone training for emergency communications protocols. But here we are, in 2017, with a very good network of communicators monitoring certain frequencies in an emergency network that ties local radio nets with national and international Ham networks using analog and digital systems that DO NOT DEPEND on the Internet in any way, and several radio systems that can greatly expand their range when the Internet is added to the equation.

The Cadillac of these systems is ham radio, and we will cover that in detail below, but first the systems that you can use without a license.  You will find that these systems are usable over shorter ranges than ham systems, but can be used effectively at the local community level to create security.

1. MURS or Multi Use Radio Service.

This is a small band of 5 frequencies in the VHF band that was established by the FCC in the fall of 2000 allowing for license by rule in part 95 of the FCC rules, requiring no individual call sign or license. For a detailed description go here:
See the details from the FCC here:  and the actual rules here:

Some of the pertinent points about MURS. 
a. There is a 2 watt limit on power output from the transmitter. There is no limit on gain of the antenna system the radio is connected to therefore no limit on effective radiated power.
b. The radios used MUST be type certified for part 95 by the FCC and have a type certification number on the radio. This requirement eliminates the many dual band ham radios from Baofeng, Wouxun, Anytone, etc.even though it is possible to program those radios to these frequencies. More on this later.
c. Murs radios can be connected to an external antenna, including mobile or base antennas. Most MURS radios that I have seen use a BNC type connector. The exceptions are the low priced units that do not have a removeable antenna.
d. There is a 60 foot limit on antenna height for base operation measured from the ground.
e. There is a 20 foot limit above a building the antenna might be mounted on.
f.  Previous holders of itinerant licenses in 2000 were grandfathered and can continue to operate on those frequencies including 154.570 and 154.600.
g. Channels 1-3 must be narrow band 2.5 khz deviation. 4 and 5 may be wideband 5 khz deviation. More on why this is important below.

The frequencies are as follows:
Authorized bandwidth
Channel Name
1151.820 MHz11.25 kHzN/A
2151.880 MHz11.25 kHzN/A
3151.940 MHz11.25 kHzN/A
4154.570 MHz20.00 kHzBlue Dot
5154.600 MHz20.00 kHzGreen Dot
As you can see from the regs above, the range will be very short. 2 watts is good for a couple of miles using a handheld, and maybe up to 10 miles using a base antenna.  There is no skip propagation at these frequencies like there is on CB. You are dealing with ground wave only.

Most dual band ham radios are not type accepted for part 95 use.
If you have a ham license you can have these frequencies in your radio FOR EMERGENCY USE ONLY. 
That means when someone is in dire trouble for their life or property, AND you can't get through on a ham frequency. See the regs on emergency use at the FCC website here: 

"§97.403   Safety of life and protection of property.
No provision of these rules prevents the use by an amateur station of any means of radio communication at its disposal to provide essential communication needs in connection with the immediate safety of human life and immediate protection of property when normal communication systems are not available."

2. GMRS (General Mobile Radio Service) and  FRS (Family Radio Service)

GMRS and FRS are both covered in the part 95 section of the FCC rules. Here is an overview on the FCC website:

Here is the link to the actual FCC rules on their website:

There are a multitude of cheap low power FRS radios, and GMRS/FRS combination radios available which are some times referred to as 'bubble pack' radio from wholesale outlets like Costco and Wall Mart. The FRS radios will be limited to 1/2 watt for unlicensed operation, and 5 watts with a GMRS license.

Again, the range of these radios is somewhat limited compared to a full blown ham dual band radio capable of using ham repeaters, but GMRS is a good choice for people who don't want to study and take a test. The license is for 5 years and costs less than $100, and the change to license by rule with no charge was proposed to the FCC in 2010. They have not acted on that proposal at this point.

You can get your GMRS license here:

Just register for the website and get your FRN number, then apply and pay for your GMRS license.
You should have your call sign the next day. Just log back into the ULS website to get it.

This is a great move and we recommend you start your radio experience with this GMRS band.

You will be authorized to use 8 frequencies that are 25 khz spacing and full 5 khz deviation at a full 50 watts of transmit power. Why is that important?  Well compared to a narrow band FM signal you will get a much clearer audio, and maybe 20% more range with a wideband signal. This frequency chart is from the website.

Notice in this chart the frequencies set aside for repeaters.

FRS/GMRS Channels

Channel numbers commonly used on 22 channel FRS/GMRS dual service radios are shown in the leftmost column. Most radios of this type are not capable of repeater operation and do not include the repeater input frequencies.
Common Channel ↓Frequency↓FRS Chan.↓FRS Max Output ↓FRS Max Bandwidth↓GMRS Chan. ↓GMRS Max Ouput ↓GMRS Max Bandwidth ↓Usage/Notes ↓
01462.5625FRS 1500 mW12.5 kHzGMRS 95 W25 kHzUnofficial national calling channel
02462.5875FRS 2500 mW12.5 kHzGMRS 105 W25 kHz
03462.6125FRS 3500 mW12.5 kHzGMRS 115 W25 kHz
04462.6375FRS 4500 mW12.5 kHzGMRS 125 W25 kHz
05462.6625FRS 5500 mW12.5 kHzGMRS 135 W25 kHz
06462.6875FRS 6500 mW12.5 kHzGMRS 145 W25 kHz
07462.7125FRS 7500 mW12.5 kHzGMRS 155 W25 kHz
08467.5625FRS 8500 mW12.5 kHz
09467.5875FRS 9500 mW12.5 kHz
10467.6125FRS 10500 mW12.5 kHz
11467.6375FRS 11500 mW12.5 kHz
12467.6625FRS 12500 mW12.5 kHz
13467.6875FRS 13500 mW12.5 kHz
14467.7125FRS 14500 mW12.5 kHz
15462.5500GMRS 150 W25 kHz
16462.5750GMRS 250 W25 kHz
17462.6000GMRS 350 W25 kHz
18462.6250GMRS 450 W25 kHz
19462.6500GMRS 550 W25 kHzUse restricted near Canadian border
20462.6750GMRS 650 W25 kHzUnofficial emergency/traveler assistance channel (PL 141.3)
21462.7000GMRS 750 W25 kHzUse restricted near Canadian border
22462.7250GMRS 850 W25 kHz
467.5500GMRS 1 in50 W25 kHzRepeater input
467.5750GMRS 2 in50 W25 kHzRepeater input
467.6000GMRS 3 in50 W25 kHzRepeater input
467.6250GMRS 4 in50 W25 kHzRepeater input
467.6500GMRS 5 in50 W25 kHzRepeater input. Use restricted near Canadian border
467.6750GMRS 6 in50 W25 kHzRepeater input, Unofficial emergency/traveler assistance channel (PL 141.3)
467.7000GMRS 7 in50 W25 kHzRepeater input. Use restricted near Canadian border
467.7250GMRS 8 in50 W25 kHzRepeater input

You can't have a repeater on MURS or on FRS. YOU MUST BE LICENSED to use repeaters.
You will need a GMRS license for these frequencies, and a Ham license to use ham repeaters.

A repeater is a transmitter and receiver usually in a high location like on a building or on a mountain top, that listens on one frequency and simultaneously retransmits what it hears on another higher or lower frequency. This greatly enhances the range of your communications. On GMRS you could realistically expect up to a 50 mile range using a good repeater. Range will vary according to location of your radio and the quality and location of the repeater system.

We really believe that any small group of people can get licensed on GMRS and put up a repeater. We have antennas for base stations that would work with up to 11 db gain.
There is NO test for this license, and the GMRS license covers your whole family. I am talking all your relatives including in laws. From the FCC website:
(a) An individual GMRS system licensee may permit immediate family members to be station operators in his or her GMRS system. Immediate family members are the:
(1) Licensee;
(2) Licensee's spouse;
(3) Licensee's children, grandchildren, stepchildren;
(4) Licensee's parents, grandparents, stepparents;
(5) Licensee's brothers, sisters;
(6) Licensee's aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews; and
(7) Licensee's in-laws.

GMRS can be used for personal business as well as other personal communications.  Ham radio can NOT be used for business.
Notice that unlicensed users of FRS can not use a radio with a detachable antenna, and can not transmit with over 1/2 watt of transmit power. For all practical purposes FRS radios are pretty useless for our purposes, but combination FRS/GMRS radios, with 5 watts of output power on the GMRS channels, can be used on several FRS frequencies at the full 5 watts output, WHEN YOU HAVE A GMRS LICENSE.

We have one type accepted GMRS handheld radio that we will be offering soon. It has 22 channels and full 5 watt power output on GMRS frequencies. It also has a scanner that can be programmed to listen to both VHF and UHF frequencies. The GMRS frequencies are locked in the firmware and can not be changed, but the tones associated with each channel can be changed. It also has all 8 repeater frequencies pre-programmed in. Just add the right tone for the repeater you want to use, and you are up and running.
I will make a special announcement soon after a good solid test of this radio, which will sell for less than $100 and is fully compliant and type accepted for GMRS by the FCC.

Contact us for other equipment recommendations.  800 889 2839

3. Ham Radio system advantages, licensing, frequencies, and equipment.

Now for the best emergency communications on the planet. Yes this requires some study, and a short 35 question multiple choice test, but the advantages of having that license are very much worth the effort.

The license is free, and for 10 years, and can be renewed on line for another 10 years, no charge.
You can study online at or at
for free, and when you are ready do a zip code search at to find a local ham in your area and find out where and when the next test will be.  The cost of the test is usually below $15 for the test materials.

Now you have your Technician class ham license. What does that get you?

Well for openers, the equipment does NOT need a type acceptance certificate from the FCC except for linear amplifiers.

Here are the Ham regs on the FCC website:

Even a casual examination of these regulations will show you the tremendous advantage of getting your ham license. I can't do all this research for you in this article so I will just list a few.

1. You are individually licensed, and not attached to a particular radio or station.
2. You have hundreds of frequencies you can use throughout the radio spectrum from 1.8 mhz to over 1200 mhz.
3. You can operate on most every mode including FM, AM, USB, LSB, CW, RTTY, PSK31 and about 50 digital modes.
4. You are limited in normal times to 1500 watts of power on most bands, and in emergencies you are not limited in any way, in terms of power or operating mode, or frequency, or equipment used.
5. You can build your own radios if you so desire, and you are not limited to the type of radio you can buy out there on the open market.
6. You will be part of a huge community of very experienced communicators that will help you increase your knowledge and practical experience along the way.
7. The normal range of your radio is usually much farther than any other service available in a comparable band.
8. The regulations are written with emergency and safety communications in mind from the beginning.
9. Ham radio is self policing. There are no government ham cops beyond the FCC itself, and they don't do much on the ham bands unless there are flagrant violations that cause grief and interference with other services. Even then, the first thing that happens is a letter to cease and desist.
10. Ham radio has the reputation of being the last man standing in an emergency communications disaster.
When everything else has gone down, ham radio still works, and that includes some satellite phone systems.
11. The availability of equipment is huge.  Ham radio has been around so long and there are so many dealers that there has been an ongoing price war for decades and the proliferation of equipment is almost unlimited around the world. Just type in 'ham equipment' on Ebay to see what I am talking about.
12. You will be one of almost 1 million ham operators just in North America alone, who all want to pass on their knowledge and skills, so take advantage of that while you still can.
13. Even an entry level Technician class licensee can use FM handheld radios to talk around the world using internet systems to tie ham repeaters together world wide. We do that all the time. It's called IRLP. Look it up at
14.  General class and above can use Single Side Band to work the world with a wire in a tree, and only 100 watts of power. The whole USA and Canada will seem like your back yard.
15. This is one of the best family hobbies I can think of. We have tested children as young as 8 with good results. I have 2 grandsons that got their Tech license at age 14.
16. In any emergency, with a little training ahead of time, you can save lives and property by using your ham radio to get the right information to the right people at the right time, when no one else can get the job done.
17. Your family and friends will be safer when you know what you are doing with radio, and you will be the go to guy in any emergency. You can really help people with this.
18. This can be a life long learning experience and you can take it as far as you want. There is no limit.
19. If you are computer savvy, there is a place for you in ham radio, because much of what we do is now controlled and made possible with computer tech. Even if you are not computer savvy, much of ham radio, especially at the entry level is not dependent on your skills with computers.
20. You can do this when you are old and gray like me. Once you know this stuff it's actually hard to unlearn and new inventions in radio can be downright exciting at times.

So there you have just a few of many good reasons to do the short study and get your ham ticket.

I could go on for hours, but let's take a break with some links to begin your education about radio.  Paul Stramer's radio store on line       Internet Radio Linking Project, Eureka node is 3363    Ham Callsign Directory. Type your zip code to get a list of hams in your area and study for your ham exams here.   Find any Ham repeater in the USA  Find information on EMP protection     Portable Solar power products like folding solar panels and storage devices   Nation Wide Frequency guide for all police and emergency services    Shows ham regs allowing emergency comm and emergency operational guidelines.   The permanent link to the latest version of the Oath Keepers national comm plan.   An example of an Oath Keeper ham radio base station for communications coordination.    AmRRon video explaining how to connect average non licensed people to emergency information and to hams and others.   Ham Radio Bands Chart

Paul Stramer  KC7MEZ  WQVW245
SLC Distributing
PO Box 116
Eureka MT 59917
800 889 2839

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