Scanner for rail fanning.....

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by trainsteve2435, Jan 6, 2007.

  1. trainsteve2435

    trainsteve2435 Member

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    Hello everyone, can someone reccomend a good portable scanner for rail fanning? I looked on the radio shack site and they seem to favor the Pro 97, is this any good? Thanks!
    steve:oops:
  2. Jim Krause

    Jim Krause Active Member

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    I've never used one but have seen them advertised in the various railfan magazines.
  3. kf4jqd

    kf4jqd Active Member

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    I use my VHF/UHF Ham Radios to listen to the trains! Radio Shhack and Uniden makes good scanners. Just make sure you get at least a 100 channel scanner. The reason is there are 100 railroad channels in North America. You can go to my Ham Radio web site to get them. www.geocities.com/kf4jqd2002 The link is on your left hand side.

    Here's some Ham Radio Stores that carries scanners:

    R & L Electronics www.randl.com
    Amateur Electronic Supply www.aesham.com
    Ham Radio Outlet www.hro.com

    Andy
  4. railohio

    railohio Active Member

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    Any scanner with at least 100 memory channels will work fine for railfanning. Just be sure to replace the horribly stock antenna with a Diamond RH77CA or Comet BNC-24 and even the most basic model will work wonders.
  5. kf4jqd

    kf4jqd Active Member

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    That is right Brian. The antenna makes the radio!

    Andy
  6. trainsteve2435

    trainsteve2435 Member

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    Hey everyone, thanks for the input. I have one more question..... I live in west virginia, so will i only be able to listen to local train frequencies? Just wondering. Thanks!
    steve
  7. railohio

    railohio Active Member

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    You'll be able to hear whatever is in range of your antenna. In the hills you're probably looking at four to five mile range on a good day. Up here on the flat land I can easily hit fifteen miles range. This is contingent upon the broadcast equipment, too, but you don't have any control of that. You can get more range with a different antenna, like one mounted to your car or home. Those options, however, will limit to some degree the scanner's usefulness while railfanning.
  8. kf4jqd

    kf4jqd Active Member

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    Brian is right. How far away do you live by the railroad tracks? A few mile, you will have no problem using the rubber ducky, base station using the telescoping whip. BUT if you want to hear alot more, you a good out door base antenna. I'm alittle bias on base antennas because I am a Ham Radio Operator!

    Please Remember this for recieveing radio and tv signals. Antenna, Antenna, Antenna IS the MOST important part in recieving (and transmitting) signals!

    Best Regaurds,
    Andy KF4JQD:wave:
  9. kf4jqd

    kf4jqd Active Member

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    Here's my radio that I use in my car. While not talking to my friends on Ham Radio. I put the radio in scan. I listen to everything from police to the railroads. One more thing. In some states a mobile scanner IS illegal! As a Ham Radio Operator I am except by federal law!

    The radio is a Yaesu FT-7800 VHF/UHF. It has 1000 channels to program! I use an entire 100 channel bank for the railroads! It scans very fast too! Here's a link to more of it's specs.
    http://www.yaesu.com/indexVS.cfm?cm...rodID=QYzjsxzj0SY=&DivisionID=65&isArchived=0 THIS IS NOT A CB RADIO! YOU MUST BE A LICENSE AMATEUR RADIO OPERATOR TO TRANSMIT WITH IT!!!! Pentalies are 1 year in jail and up to $100,000 in fines! There are many Ham's that are railfans. There's a few I know in East Tennessee that works for the NS and CSX railroads!:thumb:

    Andy

    PS
    I put a posting in the General Area for building a scanner antenna!:thumb:

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