CAVERN Network Control distributes these two inexpensive radios to our member operators with pre-programmed channels to make it easy for you to listen and join in.
1. CAVERN-Programmed RETEVIS RT22 Radio
- Tap “+/-” button to change the channel.
- Ch.8 is the day-to-day chat and check-in channel for CAVERN.
- Ch.9 is for emergency announcements and (siren) tests.
- Hold down the “—” (minus sign) key until you hear an “on” prompt to scan all 16 channels. Hold again to turn “off.”
- Press and hold down the “+” (plus sign) key until you hear static to “turn off squelch” and hear weak stations.
- Keep your radio on 24/7 so you don’t miss emergencies and other alerts.
- To maintain good battery life, periodically take your RT22 radio out of its charger for a few hours (keep it on!) instead of always leaving it plugged in (e.g. rotate 2+ radios on/off the charger).
2. CAVERN-Programmed BTech GMRS-V1 Radio
Until there is a full write-up here, please read Miklor.com’s easy-to-read guide. Note: guide says “All programming must be done in the Frequency Mode.” Not true: we list some exceptions, and a few helpful notes, below:
- If you hold the “F” button down too long you will get a big surprise (and so will anyone listening!) Try to avoid doing that accidentally. (Read Miklor to find out!)
- “M” button takes the squelch off (squelch suppresses noise but may also suppress weak signals)
- Ch 15 “GMRS 15” bypasses the repeater. Good for talking to your local group.
- Ch 000 is (or should be) “CF LNUE” which stands for CalFire Lake-Napa-Unit-East. That is the Cobb area’s CalFire dispatch center located in St. Helena. You can monitor this channel for initial Fire dispatch calls.
- Ch 33 monitors CAVERN for Emergency-only transmissions BUT DOES NOT TRANSMIT.
- To transmit an emergency alert: Ch 023 [MENU]1,3 [MENU] (display=”T-CTCS” prompt says “CTCSS”)1,0,3,5[MENU]=”confirm(ed)” (See video below)
- [MENU] 41 SC-ADD adds or removes that channel from scan. Very handy if you have a noisy channel you’d rather skip!
- Scan Button is the “*”. Prompt says “Scanning Begin”… (it sounds like “scanning beacon” due to the accent)
- The “#” button locks the keys. Set the upper band to “000” and the lower band to “023” and you can safely put your radio in your pocket!).