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Old 10-18-2017, 01:23 PM   #1
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2017 19' International
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Walkie-Talkies ... let's hear your recommendations

Thinking of getting a set of walkie-talkies to use when hitching up and parking the Airstream in campsites.

Last time I used walkie-talkies, they were bigger than a size 12 shoe.

Perhaps the technology has changed since then.

Any recommendations?
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Old 10-18-2017, 01:43 PM   #2
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I bought a set of these when I purchased the Airstream in April. They have worked great and I'd buy them again. At $29, they are throwaways. https://www.walmart.com/ip/Cobra-Cxt...-Pack/49674497
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Old 10-18-2017, 01:59 PM   #3
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We just yell at each other with the windows down

Seriously, we use the cell phones, I have mine on hands-free. I tried the walkie-talkie route but it just didn't work out. I need my hands free to drive and the hands-free feature works better for me. (I have a set of

Most of the time I stop, go look at what I'm backing into, then tell her to stand where I can see her and to wave her arms when I need to stop. If it's dark then we go to the cell phones.

I also have a set of those yellow balls on a magnetic stick. One goes on the hitch and the other AS A-frame front. Got mine at Harbor Freight, cheaper than Wal-Mart.

In the past, before our fishing group got VHF radios, I used a Motorola walkie-talkie. It was clear and had good range. I don't know if they still make those or not.
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Old 10-18-2017, 02:07 PM   #4
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We tried our cell phones, but coverage is not always available. Our Walkie-Talkies always have worked.
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Old 10-18-2017, 02:25 PM   #5
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I thought of cell phones, but I don't know if we will always have cell service up in the mountains our out in the wild lands.

So thinking of the walkie-talkies. But ... another thing to fool with.
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Old 10-18-2017, 02:42 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richw46 View Post
Most of the time I stop, go look at what I'm backing into, then tell her to stand where I can see her and to wave her arms when I need to stop. If it's dark then we go to the cell phones.
Maybe you could use these after dark:
https://www.amazon.com/Safety-Flashl...ashlight+wands
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Old 10-18-2017, 03:05 PM   #7
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I have a CB radio in the TV (needed for caravans) and a handheld CB for the spotter.
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Old 10-18-2017, 03:54 PM   #8
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Kind of a bizarre alternative and I'm not experienced enough yet to know how useful it is, but the back up camera that came with my 2018 has 2-way audio.
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Old 10-18-2017, 04:27 PM   #9
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Since my truck has really bright LED back-up lights on each extended side mirror and I replaced both the bed lights and the AS backup lights with 800 lumen LEDs, I can see the next county when backing into a site. I always get out and look around before backing and maybe once half way in, if bending to the right. We only communicate if I'm going to hit something and when I'm back where momma wants me. Just a few words hollered at me with windows down. I find this a lot less frustrating than her giving directions which I can't interpret..........
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Old 10-18-2017, 04:38 PM   #10
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They may work great for parking, but any radio that sells for $29 and advertises a 16 mile range is laughable.
You couldn't get 16 miles or 1.6 miles if you were on the Moon!
We used Motorola 1000's at work, IMO the best radio ever, and we couldn't get a mile without the repeater.

However, for 50', why not?

Seriously, the most important thing is for the spotter to know they have a speaking role. Not just stand and watch as you back into the power post.
It helps if they stand where you can see them in the mirrors. "Come on back."
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Old 10-18-2017, 05:15 PM   #11
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We have it easy since we are both hams and there is a mobile in the truck. DW takes a handy talkie and guides me in after we do a survey first to decide how we want to park. I just listen on the mobile. If I need to talk I can pick up the microphone. One of the units we have is not much bigger than a credit card and about 1/2" thick. Inexpensive FRS radios are a good option too, and serve for inter-vehicle communications when traveling together with friends. But as was mentioned, unless there is line of sight, not good for much beyond 1/2 mile.

A consistent terminology is key. We use curbside, roadside instead of right, left - whose right, facing which way?

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Old 10-18-2017, 05:41 PM   #12
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We have some small Motorola's that I got a few years ago for some long forgotten reason. They run on a couple AAA's and hold charge good for months. They are really small and drop right into a cup holder. They mostly have seen use over the years when I am doing a road trip with multiple vehicles...family, friends and so on. I used them this last summer when shuttling some teenagers to summer camp. Gave the second one to one of the mom's that was driving in the second car so we could relay needs for stops when going through the mountains where there was no cell service. I figure that we will get some more use out of them when we start RVing...hopefully next summer. But I have also started getting interested in Ham radios...thanks More Explore. Turns out the local club meets just a few blocks from my work.
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Old 10-18-2017, 06:40 PM   #13
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I’ve had these for 8 years, going back to my boating days. Work like a champ on land and water, VHF and GMRS. Built like tanks.

https://www.amazon.com/Cobra-MR-HH42.../dp/B000OYJ62U
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Old 10-18-2017, 08:13 PM   #14
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Any pair of discount-store radios is good enough for parking.

All I really want from my spotter is to know whether everything is OK. Anything more complicated than that, I get out and look myself, although with experience she's become better at more complicated guidance. Hand signals work for us, and never need batteries.
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Old 10-18-2017, 08:21 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al and Missy View Post
A consistent terminology is key. We use curbside, roadside instead of right, left - whose right, facing which way?
Exactly the reason why boats have port, starboard, forward, aft.
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Old 10-18-2017, 08:32 PM   #16
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Got some, soon realized hand signals are better.
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Old 10-19-2017, 05:43 AM   #17
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we bought some Motorola T600 off amazon

they work well for us
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Old 10-19-2017, 06:07 AM   #18
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I have a pair of Uniden radios. I got them from the Uniden outlet. They work well, but I find it easier to just turn up the volume on the backup camera.

The radios are handy when we hike with groups.
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Old 10-19-2017, 07:57 AM   #19
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We use Motorola T4500s that are very small and are kept in the TV. We find them convenient and recommend the use of walkie talkies. We have watched other couples yell at each other during the backing in process and are convinced they work to help guide the driver and preserve domestic harmony.
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Old 10-19-2017, 09:07 AM   #20
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We use GMRS radios for parking the trailer - sort of!

Have used Motorola, Cobra, Midland, and all seem quite comparable.

Not sure if it applies to all, but with some, if you have the security feature enabled,
i.e say channel 02-4 instead of straight 02, it seems to introduce a bit of a lag in functioing when you hit the press to talk button. In other words if you press "talk" and start speaking right away, the first couple of seconds of speech do not transmit - can be annoying. Just don't use the extra security channel code and transmiiting begins immediately you press talk.


As well, in our case (luckily my wife doesn't follow this forum!) I have had and continue to have a lot of trouble getting my wife to comprehend how the radio is to be used.

Problems include:

- trying to talk to me without pressing talk! (I see her talking in my mirror but don't hear a thing!)

- pressing talk and asking me something but then not releasing the press to talk button! (frustrating!)

- shouting into the thing 1/2" away from the mic so I can't understand a word!


These things continue to plague our two way conversations! I probably should just give up on it after years of trying - but hope springs eternal!

I do ask her to always stand so that she can see the truck mirrors so I can observe any panic reactions from her even though I may not hear anything!

Probably good old hand signals are the best!

With my background in railroads, I like the good old method of swinging a lantern (or LED flashlight!) vertically to indicate keep coming back, and horizontally to indicate stop. (Rapid horizontal swinging means "Right now!") My wife is good at this method!
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