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Old 04-20-06, 02:23 PM   #1
cydewaze
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Has any one ever tried 2-way radios on a bike?

My wife and I do a lot of riding, and we like to chit-chat while we ride. I also have to occasionally yell out directions to her, but since she's been to a bazillion rock concerts during her life, she's just a little hard of hearing. And now that she's getting faster on the bike, the wind noise is making it even harder for her to hear.

Has anyone ever tried two-way radios while riding? I've seen motorcyclists with them, but never bicyclists. The setup I'm looking for would consist of two radios that can fit in a jersey pocket, along with an earphone w/ voice-activated mic.

It seems like this would be a good setup, as long as you have a mute button for when you get pissed at each other.

I threw a few keywords into Google, and came up with something like this:

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Old 04-20-06, 02:27 PM   #2
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Many tandem riders do this all the time. You may check in that forum for some recommendations.

~jg
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Old 04-20-06, 02:40 PM   #3
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I use the more bike-specific radios from Nady. They make stuff for motorcycles and the packaging is weather/sweat-resistant with belt clips and ear-pieces with velcro for helmets. Also has VOX for hands-free talking and some models comes with FM radio as well.
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Old 04-20-06, 02:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
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Many tandem riders do this all the time. You may check in that forum for some recommendations.

~jg
As a tandem rider- never used them to communicate with my co-rider. If he cannot hear me yelling in his ear then we are travelling pretty fast and I won't have the breath to speak. We do use it as communication to our Back up vehicle on our long rides, and find it invaluable to let them know that it is about time to get the kettle on. We also use it when out as a group. I always give one to the slowest rider, so that we can communicate with him- or him to us. Has saved a few problems when we he has come across another of the group with a Puncture or breakdown. Never used it with an earpiece though, as the time lag on pushing the button to talk makes for a stunted jerky conversation.

For group riding it has its uses- for communicating to a back up vehicle that is within range it is invaluable. For talking to someone next to you- pretty pointless.

But you may know better.
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Old 04-20-06, 04:01 PM   #5
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Used some VOX (voice activated) radios on a long trip down Baja in the '80s. It was sorta geeky and sorta cool. The radios had a range of about 1/2 a mile... but it was enough to altert the other rider of oncoming traffic, and enough to ward off boredom on the long lonely stretches.

These were some cheap Radio Shack radios.
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Old 04-20-06, 04:07 PM   #6
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Haven't used one, but almost bought some. Home depot had a bunch with "ranges" of 5, 8, 10, 12 miles. Helper said the actual reception range is probably 1/3 to 1/2 that. Wife didn't like the idea. I'm looking for a good disposable/prepaid
cell phone instead.
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Old 04-20-06, 04:18 PM   #7
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I have used them for several rides. They are great when you have several riders of different strengths ridding together that way you can keep track of each other. My brother and I just upgraded to Garmin Rhino 110 2 way radios w/GPS capabilities. You not only can talk to each other. but you can send your locations
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Old 04-20-06, 07:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
I use the more bike-specific radios from Nady. They make stuff for motorcycles and the packaging is weather/sweat-resistant with belt clips and ear-pieces with velcro for helmets. Also has VOX for hands-free talking and some models comes with FM radio as well.
Thanks, I'll check those out. We have a motorcycle shop that's close. We just want something where we can talk if we get seperated without having to pull over and pull out the cellphone. We might not use it on every ride, but there are a few rides that we do where it would be handy.
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Old 04-20-06, 10:13 PM   #9
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What do the pros use? I am under the impression that the TdF riders are in contact with the team cars. Having only watched 1 TdF (n00b), I am not sure.
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Old 04-20-06, 10:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cydewaze
My wife and I do a lot of riding, and we like to chit-chat while we ride. I also have to occasionally yell out directions to her, but since she's been to a bazillion rock concerts during her life, she's just a little hard of hearing. And now that she's getting faster on the bike, the wind noise is making it even harder for her to hear.

Has anyone ever tried two-way radios while riding? I've seen motorcyclists with them, but never bicyclists. The setup I'm looking for would consist of two radios that can fit in a jersey pocket, along with an earphone w/ voice-activated mic.

It seems like this would be a good setup, as long as you have a mute button for when you get pissed at each other.

I threw a few keywords into Google, and came up with something like this:

This is more of a tandem setup, haven't checked out the range but another option to consider.
http://www.precisiontandems.com/tand...relessnimh.htm
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Old 04-21-06, 07:13 AM   #11
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tap on the top tube in Morse Code... the stoker will be able to feel the vibrations

-.. . -.- ..-. ..... -. -..
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Old 04-21-06, 10:09 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kf5nd
tap on the top tube in Morse Code... the stoker will be able to feel the vibrations

-.. . -.- ..-. ..... -. -..
Unless you're riding over chipseal or gravel!
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Old 04-22-06, 04:58 AM   #13
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Two way radios are a good way to stay in touch while out riding. The radios you show above would more than suit your needs. I say try them out, and see what you think. Though, I am a licensed HAM radio operator, and my opinion may be a little biased
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Old 04-22-06, 05:13 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jur
What do the pros use? I am under the impression that the TdF riders are in contact with the team cars. Having only watched 1 TdF (n00b), I am not sure.
Pro's use FM radios which are similar, or the same as the radios licensed HAM radio operator's use to communicate. The riders radio's are small, and don't transmit a lot of watts. The team cars however have bigger radio's in them which gives them a lot more wattage. When a rider talks on thier radio, the signal is sent into the team cars radio, and put back out instantly at the much higher wattage of the car radio. The team car acts as a repeater in a sense, and allows the signal to be heard by all the riders on the team.
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Old 04-24-06, 09:17 AM   #15
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we use them for kayaking because we are too far out to get good cellphone signals.
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Old 04-24-06, 09:36 AM   #16
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I used to use them on all family rides. As long as the family stays in range they are great. I quit using them because groups (the family) can easily get too far away and lose communication. I've been thinking about using some of the more powerful ones again but just haven't found the perfect set yet. Those Rhino GPS units were attractive but their location signals work only on the FRS frequencies and are power restricted to be very distance limited. Those longer range units use frequencies outside of the FRS spectrum to get 10 -12 miles (which still effectively translates into just a few miles in hilly terrain).

Once everyone had cell phones, I figured the FRS radios were obsolete. But our annual ride across Wisconsin has frequently taken us out of coverage. And I think I'm noticing a trend for mobile services to withdraw from remote areas and concentrate on population and transportation corridors. Maybe this is just a temporary result of technology changes (turn down the old network before turning up the new), but it may be a permanent effect of the change from analog to digital networks.

Anyway, I'm considering revisiting the radios again.
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Old 04-24-06, 10:31 AM   #17
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Hmm...come on gang...no one is ripping on Paul here...what has this forum come to? Legit answers?

The correct answer to the question is: maybe she is just ignoring you.
Sorry had to be done.
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Old 04-24-06, 11:05 AM   #18
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Hey ... why divorces are so expensive?
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Old 04-24-06, 11:46 AM   #19
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I have to say, I'm a little surprised the "no-radios-while-riding--you-need-all-your-senses-to-keep-from-flying-off-the-road" crowd hasn't chimed in on this.

(sorry for the troll )
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Old 04-29-06, 09:13 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grasschopper
Hmm...come on gang...no one is ripping on Paul here...what has this forum come to? Legit answers?

The correct answer to the question is: maybe she is just ignoring you.
Sorry had to be done.
rofl, I'd lost track of this thread after I hit up a few motorcycle shops and found they had nothing in stock.

Glad to see you're keeping me on my toes John!

After thinking about this, I decided to do away with the VOX option. I don't want to hear Jess cursing me when I'm dragging her up some huge climb.
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