Saturday, January 31, 2009

Can someone explain this to me?

Can someone explain this to me? A while back I talked with my ex-wife about getting my son licensed for Ham Radio. She basically said, "I don’t know anything about it and I don’t want it in my house!". My response was "Is Dakota a prisoner in your home!". I didn’t ask her to put out any money. I would pay for the license and the radio. The radio I had in mind is the Vertex (a division of Yeasu) VX 150. I am not sure what the problem here was.

Just before Christmas I had the opportunity to buy a Vertex VX 150 used on Ebay. The person had it listed with FREE shipping at that time and I had a 10% off coupon from Ebay. I thought, why not, lets put a bid on it. I didn’t really think I would win the radio, but I did. I wanted it as a replacement for my Radio Shack Pro 79 scanner. What I got was the Vertext VX 150 radio, the AA cell holder , and an extra rechargeable battery for just a little over $85. I just check Universal Radio’s website and this radio with the options listed is running $166.85 new with those options. So, I got a good deal on it. In the picture above the Vertex VX 150 is the radio on the left. The PRO 83 hand held scanner on the right is my son’s that I got him for Christmas. As you can see they are nearly the same size. The VX150 has a slightly longer antenna on it.

The good news hear is the radio is in perfect condition, the reception is great, and it was engineered to military standards so it is a tough little radio. I can talk on the 2 meter ham band if I want and it picks up the railroad (which is why I bought this in the first place). I wanted it to replace that Pro 79 because this radio is small enough to fit in my shirt pocked and had the top LCD viewing area (nice if it is hanging on my belt). The use would be standing trackside I could hear trains calling signals and know what was coming at me next.

The radio so far has exceeded my expectations. I think if I could get my son licensed this would be a great little radio for him. He might just get the one I purchased before Christmas if I can’t find another deal on one. This radio would allow him to talk into the repeater in Decatur Indiana (A system of two radio’s one takes input audio on one frequency and the other broadcasts out the message that was received on an output frequency). I can talk to the repeater from my house (which is about 25 miles away or so). I would also give my daughter the same opportunity in the future I am giving him if she wanted it. Every time I have mentioned it to him she says "Me too". We will see how she feels when she is 8 or 9 years old.
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