HF Radio needed ?

Submitted: Monday, Oct 14, 2002 at 00:00
ThreadID: 2153 Views:1861 Replies:6 FollowUps:8
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Leaving Adelaide in 3 weeks for a 6 week trip via the Darling to Bourke,Lightning Ridge, Sunshine Coast, Rockhampton ,Longreach, Opalton, Old Cork, Down the Diamantina, Bedourie, B'ville, Haddon Cnr, Innamincka [Eastern side of border] ,Cam'n Cnr, Strez And finally the Flinders and then back home...Damn it. Would it be advisable to take a HF radio on this trip, or would UHF be enough? Only the one vehicle on the trip, have GPS, winch etc. Thanks in advance.
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Reply By: ken d - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Richard-
Depends what you want the radio for.- A UHF wont give the range if you are calling for help.- HFs are great for breakdowns, and OK for phone calls however if you want one for self preservation, make sure you have and know how to set up temporary antenna and power feed etc. Many medical emergencies are from vehicle acidents, and most vehicle accidents I know of have knocked out the HF. - Have you considered an EPIRB, about $300. Portable, simple operation and gives your location. After a bit of a sticky hiking accident, I now carry a pocket one.- You can never have too many ways to communicate in an emergeny.- Cheers Ken.
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Reply By: Bruce- Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
just a little advise that may help...had friends just come back from up there..they were at a Dubbo c/p and had camera taken from vehicle , 3 others were broken into as well..police were called..told them they could do nothing and asked which way they were headed ..of to Broken Hill they said ..polce advised them not to stop at Wilcania at all ..apparently the locals..that is the darker skinned ones...are very,very light fingered ...and getting worse cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Des - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Bruce .. you sure got that right. Pass through at the speed limit and don't stop for ANYTHING!!. I could enlighten you further, but TAKE NOTICE..You have been warned. (And no I,m not a racial, I,ve got mates who are "the darker skinned ones" as Bruce puts it, and they would tell you the same) Have a good trip. Des :)
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Follow Up By: Steve L - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Lat time we went through Wilcannia we were advised that if there were cars parked along the road before the town to pull in at the end of the queue. Apparently the locals occassionally decide to attempt to obtain 'tolls' from passing traffic at the bridge. Those in the know will stop before town when this is happening and wait for a semi to go through then follow the semi into town - the semi drivers don't stop and the locals get out of their way. That said, we've had no problems, but we don't stop either (after hearing a few stories from friends who have).
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Follow Up By: Richard - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Hey, don't worry. I've been through Willcania heaps of times and one thing I don't do is stop there. I always stop at Emmdale or Little Topar if I have to. I'm only turning left there...nothing else.
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Reply By: Member - Mal - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Richard, I have a HF and love it for the security and the social side of its use. The trip you describe is not really remote like the Simpson Desert or Canning Stock Route. It is probably not worth the money to buy a HF when you can hire a Satphone for a fraction of the cost. Buy an EPIRB as well. Mal T.
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Reply By: Bob Y. - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Richard, At one stage of your trip, you'll be passing right through our "back yard". We no longer use HF, though we do have them, as UHF does for the bulk of communications. Boulia, Diamantina, Winton, and Barcoo shires have extensive UHF networks, with 3 or 4 repeaters linked up to cover the whole of each shire. Most properties use UHF, and many have repeaters as well, to cover all corners of station. Safety of staff is a big concern on most bigger stations these days. Rural Fire Board has also sponsored repeaters in some of the shires. Once you get round Innamincka, there are plenty of gas/oil vehicles moving about, so I'd suggest you would have little to worry about. The Epirb, and hire of Satphone, as suggested, would give you peace of mind. Have a good trip, you'll be in God's Country! Catch you later....Bob.
PS pack a spare Aircon Belt, it's been up in early 40's up here lately, but the nights are glorious, with a blanket necessary in early hours of morning.
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Follow Up By: Richard - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Early 40's, you beauty,bring it on. Down here in this s-hole we're still in the thros of winter, had bugger all summer last year, I'm well overdue for some sun and heat.
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Follow Up By: Richard - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Also Bob, if you see a green GU Patrol roaming in your 'back yard' give us a call.
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2002 at 00:00
Richard, No worries, we'll send a Toyota down if you need a hand, Regards, Bob.
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Reply By: Richard - Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00
Haven't you got anything better.
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Follow Up By: Richard - Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 16, 2002 at 00:00
that should be in here!!
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Follow Up By: Member - Mal - Thursday, Oct 17, 2002 at 00:00

Thursday, Oct 17, 2002 at 00:00
Richard, there isn't anything better! Mal T.
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Reply By: ExplorOz Team - Michelle - Thursday, Oct 17, 2002 at 00:00

Thursday, Oct 17, 2002 at 00:00
Richard I would agree that you do not "need" an HF radio for this trip plan and UHF will suffice. If the emergency situation concerns you, hiring a satphone is the solution. We are soon doing a Hot Topic on the various costs, features etc of these units but I can let you in on a little tip that not even one of the local dealers knew - if you use a unit on the Iridium network, you can have people send you messages (like SMS) for free via the Iridium website. Then you will only pay for any calls you make (and therefore zero if you keep it for emergencies only and dont' have on) plus the cost of hire (did you know that most Police Stations in the outback have then for hire? eg. Birdsville) with drop offs at other stations. However, if you anticipate that you will love the outback and undertake other outback trips then an HF radio can't be beaten. You don't have to buy the top of the line if its just to have as an emergency backup - you can get a basic unit for $1000.
AnswerID: 7536

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