Saturday, April 18, 2020

The Baofeng Virus ( A communicable disease)

I wanted to address a scourge of modern paragliders in Hawaii. It used to be that you could talk to anyone clearly on their radio at almost any time. Then the flying community was flooded with cheap Chinese radios and since paragliders do love cheap stuff, especially for not essential items, they were all over them.

Lately, I notice that it has been hard to contact another pilot on the radio. I thought it was because my hearing was really going bad, but then Reaper comes over the radio crystal clear. Reaper uses old style radios. Now lots of pilots all have dead batteries, poor transmission, unintelligible wind noise, it might even be time to do away with radios all together. Even Alex was hard to hear for a while and he is presidential, but her seems to have gotten over it lately.

The point is I would hope people in the future might not waste money on a cheap radio that sometimes works and get something solid and dependable. Oddly enough my radio that has lasted all these years is an old VX-150, the other radios I have had have all come and gone.

Flying is funner when talking with friends!


Geronimo John said...

Dave - I agree with you on the quality of radios. When we need them, it can be a matter of life or not.

June and I use old Kenwood TH-22A radios. We buy them on E-bay for no more than $50. I can mod them to get all but one of the USHPA frequencies. The 158 freq is above the "Light Mod". This radio is not conducive to a MARS CAP mod, but we don't use 158 freq so it is not an issue.

Should any of our local pilots need help doing the light mod on this radio, just give me a call.


nightshift said...

Hear,hear, Dave! Get it? (ba-dum-dum)
I'm with you. I still have my old VX-150. In the flying business communication quality is king.

Thom said...

I wish I had my old 150 but unfortunately it was not water proof and went on one of my goofs.

But now there is another radio in use. Ask JK don't want to spell it here.

Gravity said...

Ham Radio Outlet still sells Kenwood TH-K20A handheld 2m FM radios in the 144MHz 5.5 watt for $129.95. Perfect for paragliding and not Chinese junk...

I get a discount as I have been buying from them for over 30 years. Call sign - Gravity Hawaii.

Spare batteries are $22., and handset microphones are $34.95

firedave2 said...

I also prefer a radio that has an alkaline battery pack available. I put new batteries in about once a year and never forget to recharge.