UK Licence Free Walkie Talkies - A Guide

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UK Licence Free Walkie Talkies - A Guide

Postby Steve » Fri Nov 10, 2017 12:54 pm

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Licence Free Walkie Talkies in the UK?

Anyone can buy one (or more) licence free walkie talkie two way radios and use them for back to back communications straight out of the box with no need for a licence. The ranges of radios can vary from just a few yards to many many miles depending on what you use and the conditions in which you use them. But which are the best to get? What has the best range? And which one’s are actually licence free and legal to use in the UK?

UHF is probably the most popular band however VHF frequencies are available. One important point is, just because you buy a pair of walkie talkies on ebay, it does not mean they are legal to use, so first we will look at what are actually legal to use.


Full article here https://ukradiotransmissions.wordpress. ... in-the-uk/
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Re: UK Licence Free Walkie Talkies - A Guide

Postby m0lsx » Fri Nov 10, 2017 2:23 pm

Steve wrote: The ranges of radios can vary from just a few yards to many many miles depending on what you use and the conditions in which you use them.


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Many many miles may happen during lift conditions, but even from mountain top to mountain top with nothing in between but fresh air, many many miles is not going to happen.
The realistic range for licence free radios is measured in yards for the average user with a totally legal licence free radio. With distances of a few Km's being the best most will see unless there is a lift n or unless they can get nothing but fresh air between them & the other radio.
My wife & I working the 70cm band, handheld to handheld struggle to cross more than two average sized fields most of the time & even two fields can be a struggle at 4 to 5 watts into a whip antenna that is illegal on licence free if hedges or crops get in the way.
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Re: UK Licence Free Walkie Talkies - A Guide

Postby Steve » Fri Nov 10, 2017 3:59 pm

Yes that is true in a lot if not most cases. In the article though I am looking at all UK Licence Free options available which includes CB Radio.

I have had contacts on more than one occasion on PMR446 from Derbyshire to Wales, around 70+ miles in distance using a standard legal 446 set, albeit on a high point, looking in my logs I also had a contact with an MW3WZZ from Derbys to Wales. CB contacts on a regular basis over many miles are also easily achievable, especially with base and mobile antennas in use.
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Re: UK Licence Free Walkie Talkies - A Guide

Postby m0lsx » Fri Nov 10, 2017 7:50 pm

Steve wrote:Yes that is true in a lot if not most cases. In the article though I am looking at all UK Licence Free options available which includes CB Radio.


But even with a handheld CB you are still talking about short ranges unless there is a lift on, or unless you have a really good path, due to the inefficiency of the antennas. CB's handhelds have the major disadvantage of needing a good counterpoise/earth. Plus even a one eighth wave is just over 4 feet long, so antennas are not good on CB handhelds to say the least.
We use to use legal handheld CB's for site protection back in my shortwave broadcast days & handheld to handheld a mile is brilliant unless you are on a high point. A friend did work someone from America on 10 meters FM simplex who was using a handheld radio back in the 80's, but the indexes were so high then that you could work the world on a wet piece of string at least one day a week back then.

Edited to add. Now that SSB is legal, even at 4 watts the world is legally workable now, Licence free.But not long distances with a handheld. Or not unless you are both in good positions or unless there is a lift on.
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