Navstar 220 VHF

Communication & Navigation Equipment: VHF, UHF, GPS, Satellite phones ETC.
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Navstar 220 VHF

Post by Michael » 15 Feb 2017 15:08

Gents,

I have a Navstar 220 VHF radio that has been in my garage for a while now. I want to use a 2-way radio when we go 4x4ing and especially on trips like the river trip and duide trip.

Please give some recommendations whether I should keep my VHF or swap it for something like a Bosvark UHF?
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Re: Navstar 220 VHF

Post by iandvl » 15 Feb 2017 16:53

Michael,

I am very unfamiliar with the Navstar 220. However, a quick Google indicates it isn't a VHF, but rather a 29MHz radio.

Unfamiliar with the 29MHz, I use primarily VHF (and I have a few UHF units). My understanding, however, is that 29MHz is pretty much dying out, and that most offroad use is nowadays VHF or LF UHF. Might be wrong, but Christo would have a better idea.

If you do want to throw it out, please let me know - I'll make a reasonable offer on it :)

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Re: Navstar 220 VHF

Post by iandvl » 15 Feb 2017 17:31

Sorry. I am confused today. Should have thought a bit before replying.

The dying out offroad frequency is 27MHz.

Your Navstar 220 is 29MHz. Which would indicate that it is probably for marine frequencies (ie: boat to shore etc). I have no need for a marine radio, but you will probably get some value for it if advertised on a matine forum.

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Re: Navstar 220 VHF

Post by Michael » 15 Feb 2017 18:48

Ian, thanks for the info on the radio............ shows you how little I know about them.

I will have to do some reading on the internet about 2-way radios to get some more info
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Re: Navstar 220 VHF

Post by iandvl » 15 Feb 2017 19:21

I would personally recommend VHF. But it comes with additional overhead (licensing and similar). Also, even when licensed, you are going to run into issues using a VHF radio cross-border.

The license-free UHF devices work very well. They also do not require licenses (for low power use). Biggest issue is probably the power (restricted to ~5W unlicensed) which means decreased range and similar. That notwithstanding, they do generally give a few km range line of sight, which is fine for general convoy use.

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Re: Navstar 220 VHF

Post by Michael » 16 Feb 2017 08:50

Ok done a little bit of reading and I see that it is mostly used for marine purposes, but it is also used by the 4WD club of South Africa and also for overlanding.
VHF is obviously preferred as the range is way more and is not limited to line of sight.

What can I expect to get for this radio including a magnetic base antenna?
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Re: Navstar 220 VHF

Post by Kagiso II » 16 Feb 2017 14:49

You Bro -- If you advertise it down COAST ways [veral in die Wes Kaap] sal jy beste prys kry. Hulle gebrfuik dit twee doelig -- Boot EN 4x4 .. twe vlieë met EEN klap [iNyathi het bv antennas op vir 29MHZ EN VHF - long range [wels donder die radio's gekom]

ek sê maar net ... :oldtimer: :oldtimer: :oldtimer:
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Re: Navstar 220 VHF

Post by ChristoSlang » 16 Feb 2017 20:51

VHF is the way to go. Most clubs have moved or are moving to them. They use better FM technology that provides clear audio quality. The licensing is cheap - if you can afford a 4x4 and its fuel bills you can surely afford the R100 or so annual fee. BTW: licensing is one of the downsides of the improved tech - you help pay for the channel reservation required due to the improved transmission range (i.e bother factor). Each country defines their own ranges & allocations, which is why the ZA licensing does not cover usage in other countries.

UHF is for talking to aircraft (these are VERY directional radios). The unlicensed ones are unlicensed because their low power ensures they can't really reach (i.e. bother) anyone you can't see. Probably good if you want to go outside of ZA, but just because we do not require licenses for them does not imply the same for other countries. ZA laws are for ZA - other countries make & and enforce their own laws. Caveat emptor, YMMV, ask around, read up, etc...

HF, CB,and all the other HF mobile radios are what your grandpa used. Leave those to him, and make sure he does not bequeath any of them to you in his will. They typically use AM (instead of FM) which is more susceptible to noise & interference and suffer from low output power like the other license-free radios. Worst of all worlds - only buy one if all your buddies have them! But I'd suggest educating your buddies, or getting new buddies rather... :rolling:
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Re: Navstar 220 VHF

Post by Alex Roux » 16 Feb 2017 21:05

Christo

I have always thought that UHF is least hassle (since it is licence free), and we mostly only talk when in convoy in any event.

But now you have half-convinced me on VHF

Can you perhaps give a step-by-step summary of the process one should follow to get VHF'ed?
1) Get the licence first?
2) Where?
3) Then take licence with you to acquire the VHF radio, and where?
4) etc.

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Re: Navstar 220 VHF

Post by iandvl » 16 Feb 2017 21:31

1: Get the license first ?

Yes. Reputable dealers will require your registration before selling you a radio.

2: Where ?

I am license with ORRA. No issue if you are a member of a recognised club (NOROC is registered - you will merely need a letter from the club radio office - Christo, IIRC).

4x4 community forum has now also managed to get authorisation to use the same frequencies as ORRA, but I am no longer a memer there, so cannot comment.

3: Take licens3 with you for radio

Necessary, but not exactly. Eric Keen will sell to you provided you provide your ORRA application on purchase. Ie: complete the ORRA forms, CC him, and he'll forward goods. Great. He is based in Klerksdorp, but he has shipped stuff to me before I have even paid previously, and his prices are good.

As radio officer, Christo will probably fill in the gaps I have left. Maarnouwat.

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