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Family Radio Service


Contents

Introduction

The Family Radio Service, or FRS, is an unlicensed, simplex only, personal radio service in the US covered by Part 95 of the FCC's regulations. Hand-held FRS transceivers are typically used by families, children, and campers to communicate. Shopping malls, theme parks, and special events are all great locations to monitor FRS communications. Radios may not have external antennas or power amplifiers attached to them. Power output is limited to 2 watts on the 462 MHz channels (1-7 and 15-22), and 1/2 watt on the 467 MHz channels (8-14). Bandwidth is limited to 12.5 kHz (2.5 kHz peak deviation) on all channels. GMRS users may also communicate with FRS users since all FRS frequencies are now shared with GMRS.


Frequencies

Frequency  Type  Alpha Tag  Description  Mode  Tag 
462.56250  FRS 01 Channel 1  FMN  Other 
462.58750  FRS 02 Channel 2  FMN  Other 
462.61250  FRS 03 Channel 3  FMN  Other 
462.63750  FRS 04 Channel 4  FMN  Other 
462.66250  FRS 05 Channel 5  FMN  Other 
462.68750  FRS 06 Channel 6  FMN  Other 
462.71250  FRS 07 Channel 7  FMN  Other 
467.56250  FRS 08 Channel 8  FMN  Other 
467.58750  FRS 09 Channel 9  FMN  Other 
467.61250  FRS 10 Channel 10  FMN  Other 
467.63750  FRS 11 Channel 11  FMN  Other 
467.66250  FRS 12 Channel 12  FMN  Other 
467.68750  FRS 13 Channel 13  FMN  Other 
467.71250  FRS 14 Channel 14  FMN  Other 
462.55000  FRS 15 Channel 15  FMN  Other 
462.57500  FRS 16 Channel 16  FMN  Other 
462.60000  FRS 17 Channel 17  FMN  Other 
462.62500  FRS 18 Channel 18  FMN  Other 
462.65000  FRS 19 Channel 19  FMN  Other 
462.67500  FRS 20 Channel 20  FMN  Other 
462.70000  FRS 21 Channel 21  FMN  Other 
462.72500  FRS 22 Channel 22  FMN  Other 


Recognized Channels

Some groups try to consistently use the same channel / tone combinations.

  • 01 / 00 (462.5625 / CSQ) - National SOS Radio Network
  • 03 / 00 (462.6125 / CSQ) - AmRRON CH3 Project
  • 07 / 15 (462.7125 / 110.9) - MilCom/Airshow Hobbyists (backup)
  • 11 / 22 (467.6375 / 141.3) - Birders (no roger beep, please)
  • 14 / 38 (467.7125 / 250.3) - MilCom/Airshow Hobbyists
  • 20 / 22 (462.6750 / 141.3) - Travelers information/assistance


CTCSS

Most FRS radios have CTCSS capability. Some higher end units may also have DCS. The companies marketing the radios usually refer to these tones as "privacy codes" even though they provide no privacy. Instead of asking FRS users to understand the actual tone values, integers are used instead. Most, but not all, manufacturers use the same numbers as Motorola:

CTCSS tone (Hz) Commonly assigned "code"
67.001
71.902
74.403
77.004
79.705
82.506
85.407
88.508
91.509
94.810
97.411
100.012
103.513
107.214
110.915
114.816
118.817
123.018
127.319
131.820
136.521
141.322
146.223
151.424
156.725
162.226
167.927
173.828
179.929
186.230
192.831
203.532
210.733
218.134
225.735
233.636
241.837
250.338


Canada

American-standard FRS radios have been approved for use in Canada since April 2000. The revised technical standard RSS 210 has essentially the same technical requirements as in the United States. Since September 2004,low-power GMRS radios and dual-standard FRS/GMRS radios have also been approved for use in Canada, giving additional channels. In Canada, no license is required and no restrictions are imposed on the GMRS channels.


Mexico

Since tourists often bring their FRS radios with them, and since trade between the U.S., Canada, and Mexico is of great value to all three countries, the Mexican Secretary of Communication and Transportation has authorized use of the FRS frequencies and equipment similar to that in the US. However, dual-mode FRS/GMRS equipment is not approved in Mexico, so caution should be exercised in operating hybrid FRS/GMRS devices purchased elsewhere. http://web.archive.org/web/20091026203800/http://geocities.com/wd9ewk/xe-frs.html Mexico's Family Radio Service (FRS) equivalent retrieved 2009 Oct 23


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