A couple friends are into the survivalist movement, (bunkers and prepping), and pointed this out to me. First, what I'm talking about is not legal. Radios in the United States and Canada are certified for use in a specific use. For example, CFR 47 - Part 97 of the rules of the FCC say that an amateur radio can not transmit outside of amateur frequencies. Canada has the same rule, albeit I can't recall Industry Canada's specific code.
Radios from the orient are notoriously illegal, and the F.C.C. tends to confiscate what they can when they can, mostly on large shipments hitting the import/customs dock. Still, that does nothing for the individual buyer who frequents a web site in China, Korea, or Hong Kong.
A lot of survivalists are buying radios like these. Far for me to say this is what you should do, but this is common among some groups.
The rules state that amateurs, (with the appropriate license), may transmit in the bands of 28.000 to 29.700 MHz, 50.000 to 54.000 MHz, 144.000 to 148.000 MHz, and 420.000 to 450.000 MHz. Appropriate license means if you are licenses as a novice or technician you can use segments of these frequencies. For example, a tech can only use 28.000 to 28.500, legally.
The radio in this picture will transmit and receive 26.000 to 33.000, 47.000 to 54.000, 136.000 to 174.000, and 400.000 to 480.000 MHz. It also does one other thing which is illegal and that is to encrypt the conversation taking place between two radios. FCC and Industry Canada prohibit any transmissions which are not open to all users.
Back when I was in the states I would hear some transmission just below the CB band, (CB is 26.96500 to 27.40500), which were encrypted FM. From what I could research it was from a group out in Montana who use them as their private communications. And while 30-33 and 47-50 is technically low band business radio service, some groups are using these frequencies to communicate over distances of one hundred miles or more.
Ironically, here in Europe, some people are also getting on the bandwagon with these radios as well as I've heard un-encrypted transmissions of Italian, French, and possibly Swedish.
I'm not advocating the use of such radios, but letting you know they are out there in case you hear something unusual on your radio. Then again, if you prep.......
Ham Radio/SW DXing. Get involved! Let's take back America's Radio Waves! What's going on in ham radio in America...
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"I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them." - Thomas Jefferson
I have purchased small electronic kits from online Chinese companies at very low prices. Surprisingly, quality is good. I get pop up adds for dual band mobile amateur radios in the sub $100 dollar range. The Yaesu FT-8500 in my car about 20 years old. I have been tempted. When traveling out of the US, I have seen radios like the one mentioned in this post for sale. They are fair game in 3rd world countries. I follow the amateur radio rules religiously. I like my license. If the US ever gets so bad we need to be preppers, I am not so sure I am not too old participate.