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Old 12-12-2018, 06:14 AM   #1
jquinlan
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Default Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

I'm new back into the Model A world after being out if it since the late 80's. Back then everyone used CB radios to communicate when out on tours. Because there really wasn't many other options at the time. But the world has changed a lot since then.

I'm planning a Model A trip from Tampa Florida to the MARC membership meet in Savannah. As there may be cars from some other clubs, I was wondering across the board what people nowadays are using to communicate. I've heard the inexpensive 2 way handheld radios are the most popular option nowadays. But do some clubs still use CB's? Cell phones are also another option. What does your club use while touring?

And can you recommend a good hand held radio ?
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Old 12-12-2018, 06:39 AM   #2
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

We use cb radios. Works great.
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Old 12-12-2018, 07:21 AM   #3
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

I phones TEXT.
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Old 12-12-2018, 08:10 AM   #4
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

Zello is an app you can run on a smartphone which turns the phone into a push to talk two way radio. However, you have unlimited range as long as you have cellular service. Group channels so everyone hears everyone too. Works great for a large group and is legal and safe to use while driving. Big red button in middle of your phone screen, push it to talk, audio comes out the speaker, no need to hold it up to your face.
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Old 12-12-2018, 08:58 AM   #5
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

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Zello is an app you can run on a smartphone which turns the phone into a push to talk two way radio. However, you have unlimited range as long as you have cellular service. Group channels so everyone hears everyone too. Works great for a large group and is legal and safe to use while driving. Big red button in middle of your phone screen, push it to talk, audio comes out the speaker, no need to hold it up to your face.
VERY interesting. In 2017 we used zello to monitor hurricane search and rescue operations in Texas and it really was a great app. Many of the volunteer rescue boats that showed up from all over used zello.

Never considered using it as a group communication tool while driving but it makes sense.
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Old 12-12-2018, 09:13 AM   #6
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

Jim, a lot has changed since you have been gone. Personally I would also recommend cellular communication however I would recommend you and the other Model-Aers NOT parade to Savannah as a group, ...but instead travel in small groups at 1-2 minute intervals with plenty of rendevous' along the way.


As the group leader, take the time to make up small booklets that your group participants can follow outlining stops, turns, and points of interest along the way. Groups of 2 - 3 Model-A's rarely impede traffic however groups of 6 or more together almost always cause traffic issues for others. In those larger groups, the cars at the end are always trying to make sure they don't get caught at a traffic signal, and the cars in front typically slow down or pull over waiting on those who got detained. This has the potential for creating unnecessary safety issues. Then there is always the few participants that need to take an unscheduled bathroom break but do not want to inconvenience the rest of the group by asking for everyone to stop. Google Maps and Google Earth are your friend these days for mapping out trips such as this. Find points of interest along the way to route your participants to drive by. Antique stores, small town squares, roadside parks, and larger convenience stores make great 15 minute stops for people to stop and stretch their legs. Then cell phone numbers of different ones can be placed in your tour book should anyone have a problem. Good luck and safe travels.
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Old 12-12-2018, 09:29 AM   #7
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

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Jim, a lot has changed since you have been gone. Personally I would also recommend cellular communication however I would recommend you and the other Model-Aers NOT parade to Savannah as a group, ...but instead travel in small groups at 1-2 minute intervals with plenty of rendevous' along the way.


As the group leader, take the time to make up small booklets that your group participants can follow outlining stops, turns, and points of interest along the way. Groups of 2 - 3 Model-A's rarely impede traffic however groups of 6 or more together almost always cause traffic issues for others. In those larger groups, the cars at the end are always trying to make sure they don't get caught at a traffic signal, and the cars in front typically slow down or pull over waiting on those who got detained. This has the potential for creating unnecessary safety issues. Then there is always the few participants that need to take an unscheduled bathroom break but do not want to inconvenience the rest of the group by asking for everyone to stop. Google Maps and Google Earth are your friend these days for mapping out trips such as this. Find points of interest along the way to route your participants to drive by. Antique stores, small town squares, roadside parks, and larger convenience stores make great 15 minute stops for people to stop and stretch their legs. Then cell phone numbers of different ones can be placed in your tour book should anyone have a problem. Good luck and safe travels.
Great advice Brent, thanks. At this time there are only a couple Model A's going and it may just be a few of us. And I thought about most of what you wrote and will be taking that into consideration if there is a bigger interest. The more I think about ZELLO (suggested above) the more it seems to be the perfect cellular app for this sort of thing. Because if someone gets a little behind and has to stop to use a bathroom or something, when they get back on the road, they can communicate with the entire group with zello and not have to worry about range. They can be 20 miles away from the leader and still have perfect communication. Whereby cb radios and two way hand helds have to worry about falling out of range with the group. Zello is like a 2 way radio that never gets out of range. Plus your "frequency" or channel is private and you don't have to worry about others blocking your channel.
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Old 12-12-2018, 12:38 PM   #8
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

Zello would work well as long as you have cell service. Here, once you leave town, more often than not the “no service “ message pops up.
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Old 12-12-2018, 02:25 PM   #9
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

Does anybody use the FRS (Family Radio Service) radios? They're inexpensive, have decent range, and are simple hand-held walkie-talkie type devices.
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Old 12-12-2018, 02:45 PM   #10
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

Our club uses the Family Radio Service (Motorola Talkabout 2-Way Radio's). With some cell phone back-up. It is common for us to tour in areas with no cell service.
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Old 12-12-2018, 03:19 PM   #11
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

Cell phone are supposed be hands free in California. With all the traffic here, really don't like to see drivers on their cell phones while driving. Our club is still using CB radios. Hand held CB's are terrible and weak.
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Old 12-12-2018, 04:15 PM   #12
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

My experience is that CBs are still the best way to go. Mobile phones might sound like a good idea but there is so much country where there is no coverage that they are useless too much of the time. In addition, we are not allowed to even touch a phone while driving so they are a no-no.
Distances are very often large enough that a hand held radio is of little use, Even a hard wired radio with proper antenna is of limited value for the same reason.
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Old 12-12-2018, 04:33 PM   #13
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

I still prefer a CB radio. Whether it's just 2 cars or 20- it's instant communication without worry about a signal.
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Old 12-12-2018, 04:56 PM   #14
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

Pre Planning on stops along the way!
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Old 12-12-2018, 05:07 PM   #15
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

Just tried Zello in my TS. Found that at 45, couldn’t hear my wife talk. Going back to cb’s.
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Old 12-13-2018, 03:04 AM   #16
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

Morse code with our headlights..... but since the car ahead never pays attention to the one behind, it never seems to work.

We mostly rely on cell phones but find that the majority of time nobody can hear it ringing when driving, so it isn't until we make a stop that we realize someone is missing. Eventually I want to get a CB and hopefully convince others that it is a good idea. In the mean time my family uses hand held radios, they are really only good for line of sight but they have been a great asset when we used them. Those of you who have CB's, do you get a lot of feedback from the ignition?
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Old 12-13-2018, 09:45 AM   #17
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

There is some feedback but squelch most of it. Also, a resistor coil wire does wonders. I have cb’s in all 4 cars. Used them for over 40 years.
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Old 12-13-2018, 09:50 AM   #18
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

If you have trouble hearing your cell phonewhen using zello, here is the solution. https://www.ebay.com/itm/Ham-Radio-P...edirect=mobile
They work amazingly well. It is a speaker, mic, and ptt all in one. Connects to you cell via bluetooth. Has a clip on the back to clip to your shirt collar or epaulet. I have a set of these and they work amazingly well. Loud and clear audio, dont have to touch your phone. If cellular service is weak not holding the phone but setting it by a window such as the package tray behind the seat helps. Your hand is a shield for the antenna.
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Old 12-13-2018, 02:15 PM   #19
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Default Re: Touring with other Model A's - How does your club communicate

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If you have trouble hearing your cell phonewhen using zello, here is the solution. https://www.ebay.com/itm/Ham-Radio-P...edirect=mobile
They work amazingly well. It is a speaker, mic, and ptt all in one. Connects to you cell via bluetooth. Has a clip on the back to clip to your shirt collar or epaulet. I have a set of these and they work amazingly well. Loud and clear audio, dont have to touch your phone. If cellular service is weak not holding the phone but setting it by a window such as the package tray behind the seat helps. Your hand is a shield for the antenna.
I didn't even know they made stuff like that Eagle. Excellent find. Their ad says it's perfect for zello. Thank you for posting the link !! I'm getting one.
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Old 12-15-2018, 01:15 AM   #20
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I didn't even know they made stuff like that Eagle. Excellent find. Their ad says it's perfect for zello. Thank you for posting the link !! I'm getting one.
Get two! Then you have someone to talk to. I have found them to work flawlessly. Crisp, loud audio, somewhat noise cancelling mic.
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