Wanted: Suggestions for a P-PRR or similar walky talky

Discussion in 'Weapons, Equipment & Rations' started by Mr Happy, Oct 26, 2006.

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  1. Mr Happy

    Mr Happy LE Moderator

    I’m looking for suggestions here for a walky talky for skiing.


    I ski. The problem is that on pistes it’s easy to lose your ski buddies because everyone is wearing a similar jacket (red, blue, orange last season) and trousers (black) and so you can’t spot them so easily when there are hundreds of folks around wearing the same damned gear.

    The other problem is that pistes have horrendous mobile phone signals and when you ring someone they have to stop skiing at the side of the piste, take off their gloves, put their gloves away, find their phone and finally answer the phone – which normally of course means the call has been missed.

    So I figure I need a PRR or something like it.

    Features I’d like:
    Civi batt powered
    Headset / ear-piece
    External mike (throat / boom)
    Voice activated transmission or external pressel
    That the battery pack can be kept warm
    batt life - 8 hours
    1.5-5KM range (in reality 0.5 – 1.5 probably but the PRC349 was supposed to 3KM and years of experience makes me nervous).

    Features not needed:
    Too many channels
    Ability to be compliant with local countries broadcasting laws
    Anything else

    So, I’m after a simple but preferably powerful VHF system to communicate up to a 2-5KM
  2. Icom VHF marine radios offer hands free kits with voice activated transmission. I cant think of any product names, But having used them they seem to fit the bill.
  3. I realise legality isn't high on your list, but PMR446 (in Europe) or FRS (in the US) is both legal, cheap (£20 a handset) and sets are available that meet all your requirements.

    If you'd like specific recommendations, Motorola kit isn't the cheapest but has a reasonable rep.
    eg. http://www.nevadaradio.co.uk/acatalog/motorola-pmr.html

    The same site (which is only an example, there's dozens of UK sources for these things) also has Alinco, Icom and Yaesu sets (good but more expensive) and Goodmans (cheap and disposable) plus all the accessories.

    I've used a number of PMR446 sets successfully while on holiday etc. without any major issues. Actual range achieved is terrain-dependant; OK outdoors, but a bit iffy in shopping centres!
  4. Got this year a couple of Motorola T5530 FRS Radios

    lots of channels (1w and 0.5w) privacy (simple encryption key) mode, easy to use, etc.

    so far have done OK on Ex weekends (always protected them from water, etc, carried them on PLCE pouches or ALICE LCII ammo pouches)

    can take a rechargeable battery (included) or 3x AA Batts

    Bought them in the States for less than 40 dollars (walmart)

    as for the earbud/mic, I've bought earbuds/PTT mics on ebay, 3 dollars each plus 4.5 dollars airmail from Hong Kong... have worked very well so far

    just my 2 pence on the matter



    PS: They come in an ugly yellow color, but mad we a few camo bags for them as well... if used where yellow is not a concern, their belt clip (a la cellphone) is good too)
  5. Mr Happy

    Mr Happy LE Moderator

    The problem with all that 'cheap' radio stuff like teh motorolas for 80 quid or the goodmans for 20 is that inside they have $1 of chinese technology and try to make up for it with 'features' which i don't want (308 channels FFS).

    I need something that'll survive a tumble or two. The PRR (overt) I think would be perfect but I suspect its uber expensive - if its even available...
  6. Gremlin

    Gremlin LE Good Egg (charities)

    I hate to disagree with you too much, but the motorolas are exactly what you want for this purpose.

    I have been using my set for over three years, they have survived 7 skiing holidays (including being used by the children!!) and in Courchevel last year the signal was good enough to reach between the 1850 and 1650 ski areas. They also come with ear pieces and voice activation.

    More importantly PMR sets are also compatible with what everybody else is using, so if you meet up with others and want to expand your radio net then you can.

    The motorolas have also survived 3 seasons of shooting, so all in all a fairly rugged test.
  7. http://www.fieldandtrek.com/cat_id/EQUIACCE2WAY/product-Freequency-PMR-122tx-Radio-(Pair)-25647.htm
  8. Alinco do make an excellent one, the Alinco DJ-446

    European compliant and robust as hell.

    Threw mine down the M4 at 50 mile an hour on the bike last year when I had an accident. Still works.

    Headsets are fairly standard and will work with VOX or PTT.

    The DJ-446, if you know a person who can, and I did, with a minor alteration with solder can increase the range to 15 miles, I have talked on mine from St Peters Hill in Reading to Didcot and been heard clearly.

    Fairly well waterproof, mine lived on a motorbike for 3 years and never failed.

    Not cheap, approx £100 a unit but bloody good.

    Can be got from a shop called MODULATIONS in Abingdon although I'm sure you'll find other sources about.
  9. Another suggestion is the Entel HT446...

    Submersible and built like a brick sh*thouse.

    Again, not cheap at around £150 a pop but should last for years. I have just got a couple for range use and am well impressed...

    Will take a range of headsets/ pressles etc.

    Have a look on Google - lots of write ups & offers.

  10. http://www.446user.co.uk/ is worth a look as it has lots of reviews. They also rate the Entel highly.

    If you are geek minded, the site also tells you how to hook up a PMR relay to your PC, so that as long as you're within 2Km of your PC, you can talk to anyone else in the world who has done the same!

    Edited for bad spelling.
  11. Try this site: http://www.twoway-radio.co.uk/ Some good stuff on here, can be a bit pricey but its pretty comprehensive. Email comms is usually pretty good as well so if you email your requirements to them they should be able to find what you want.