Rugged Radios....Yes or No?

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1Louder

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AZ
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Chris
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K
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K1LDR
No... they are pretty much promoted to folks that don't want to take the time to get a license. Oh and yes they are re-colored cheap Boafeng radios.
 
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NateWW35

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628
Denver, Colorado, USA
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Nate
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W
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KE0TXQ
Nope, business bands are programmed in. Many of the frequencies (that I've looked up in my areas) are used by hospitals, schools, private security firms, etc. Even if you are way the heck out in the woods, the chances of potentially interrupting/interfering with something important going on is there. While nearly impossible to figure out it was you/your group, it's best to not even think about using said frequencies.

The reason they're called "race radios" (if I understand correctly), is teams lease a frequency for the duration of a race for their comms. During said time, they have exclusive rights to the frequency, but I may be misinterpreting it a bit.

Also, as mentioned, they're the cheap Baofeng/TYT/other Chinese radios in special colors and with their programming for nearly double the price.
 

BigDogYJ

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Jamison
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Donato
These guys have been going to King of the Hammers events the last few years. Early on they were decent. They were selling Yaesu and Standard Horizon vertex radios for a reasonable price. But a few years ago they switched to these baofeng cheap Chinese radios and they charge more than they did for the yaesu‘s. The owner is a little off-putting at times too. If your looking for an alternative, PCI Race radios has treated me well and sells high quality gear.

If I’m not allowed to mention other vendors here let me know. I apologize ahead of time.
 
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Downs

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Hunt County Texas
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Downs
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Man don't even get me started on these guys. I made a video about it a while back and caught a lot of flak for it from the Rugged Radios "white knights". The only advantage to me is they come prewired for headsets but you can accomplish the same thing with a stand alone aircraft intercom box. They've started pushing sponsorships to the big overland and off road Youtube Channels and spreading even more. When confronted about this stuff the channels double down and try to defend RR.

 

12express

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98
Phoenix, AZ, USA
First Name
Don
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W
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N7IFO
When I was at SEMA 2016.. I spotted some blue baofeng UV-5R's from a distance while walking through the off road section. As I got closer, I realized it was re branded as "rugged radios" and about crapped my pants when I saw the prices they wanted.. I laughed out loud and waited a moment to ask the rep what they were smoking, but he was busy schmoozing some poor fool into buying some. NO WAY should a $20 HT be worth over $100, no matter what programming it has. They really soak people who buy them.

I've been into radio for a long time and i'd never recommend rugged radios to someone. The technician class license is incredibly easy to get. Just do it!
 
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Slopitch

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Overland Bound recommends you get your Ham License and use Ham Radio on the trail.
Powerful, reliable, loaded with features.
So if you pay for a general "technician" license (no test?), can you broadcast on your mobile ham radio? Will ham be able to communicate with others who have CBs?
 

12express

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98
Phoenix, AZ, USA
First Name
Don
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W
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N7IFO
So if you pay for a general "technician" license (no test?), can you broadcast on your mobile ham radio? Will ham be able to communicate with others who have CBs?
All ham radio licenses require a test that you must study for. You can broadcast from just about anywhere with a ham radio, especially your vehicle. Frequencies that ham radios use are allocated to specific ranges of the radio spectrum. They generally will not operate within the Citizens Band.
 

Slopitch

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Helena, AL
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So if you pay for a general "technician" license (no test?), can you broadcast on your mobile ham radio? Will ham be able to communicate with others who have CBs?
Looked it up and the simple answer to my second question is NO, Ham cannot talk to CB.