Operating Your CAVERN Radios

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

Operating the CAVERN-programmed RETEVIS RT22 (starts at 3:30) This old video with bad audio will be replaced soon!
  • 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!).
CAVERN GMRS Operators listen up! Here’s how to program your radio for Emergency transmit.

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