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Fort Detrick Radio System Jams Remote Garage Doors
WTOP Radio Network ^ | 27 FEB 2005 | The Associated Press

Posted on 02/27/2005 6:06:22 PM PST by Denver Ditdat

FREDERICK, Md. - A new radio system at Fort Detrick will improve communication with the Pentagon. The downside: some people may have to open their garage doors the old-fashioned way.

The Land Mobile Radio system will allow Fort Detrick and 10 other Army installations in the Washington region to communicate with the Pentagon and civilian emergency personnel by hand-held radios.

In a suburban sacrifice to emergency preparedness, Frederick residents could experience a rash of dead door openers in coming days, as the Army's Fort Detrick begins using a new radio system linking local and federal government emergency personnel.

The new system uses a frequency that has been owned by the military for decades but used only by a couple of consumer devices, including garage door openers.

Testing of the system has generated a dozen calls to Fort Detrick from residents with problems, and when the system begins operating on 3,000 military properties across the country in coming months, hundreds more complaints may follow.

"I think the Army ought to buy us a new opener or pay for a converter," Marty Kreps told The Washington Post.

"If the government was fair, they'd give us a tax deduction," Michael Foster said.

Negative, the Army says.

"This frequency belongs to the military," said Michael J. Batt, telecommunications engineer and frequency manager at Fort Detrick, who is coordinating the radio system rollout. "I'd rather know Frederick County has a radio system it can rely on in an emergency and have to walk a few feet to open my garage."

In May, residents near Eglin Air Force Base in Florida had problems with their garage door openers while the base was testing its land mobile system. In November, Fort Detrick finished work on a 150-foot radio tower, which juts above a grove of satellite dishes about a mile from the entrance to North Crossing. In mid-January, Detrick began testing the radios.

That was about the same time Darlene Foster returned from the Safeway to find her garage door immobile. And the same week, Marty and George Kreps learned that to open their garage, Marty Kreps said, "you have to pull up to the door like you're going to run into it."

Surfing the Internet, George Kreps learned that this was a known problem with two possible solutions: "Either you get a $60 kit" to change the frequency "or you spend $150 on a whole new system."


TOPICS: Government
KEYWORDS: amateur; amateurradio; banglist; fortdetrick; ham; hamhamradio; hampinglist; interference; maryland; radio; radiofrequency; rf
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I'm sure the folks who have been using the garage door openers aren't happy, but that's one of the pitfalls of a Part 15 device. You have to accept any and all interference from the primary user(s) of the band, and not cause any interference to them.

Something to keep in mind when BPL (also Part 15) starts to roll out.

1 posted on 02/27/2005 6:06:25 PM PST by Denver Ditdat
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To: 1066AD; 1ofmanyfree; 230FMJ; A knight without armor; AlexW; ASOC; bd476; bigbob; bikerman; ...
Ham Radio Ping List

Please Freepmail me if you want to be added to or deleted from the list.

2 posted on 02/27/2005 6:07:18 PM PST by Denver Ditdat (Ronald Reagan belongs to the ages now, but we preferred it when he belonged to us.)
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To: Denver Ditdat; Pete-R-Bilt; B4Ranch; Eaker; Squantos

Look, I told ya I'm sorry about the garage, honey.

Hey, I DID PUSH THE BUTTON.


3 posted on 02/27/2005 6:10:13 PM PST by glock rocks (WYGIWYG)
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To: Denver Ditdat
Sounds to me like we might have the first test of the new class action laws. It is interesting that the only mention in the article of finding someone to blame is about the government and not the manufacturer of the garage door opener. I would think that is where the liability, if any, would lie.
4 posted on 02/27/2005 6:13:07 PM PST by NonValueAdded ("We're going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good" HRC 6/28/2004)
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To: NonValueAdded

There is no liability. Those folks are using freq's that belong to the feds...always have. Any lawsuit will get tossed.


5 posted on 02/27/2005 6:15:50 PM PST by seadevil (after a 4 year hiatus from FR, I have returned)
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To: Denver Ditdat

Wait until it starts interfering with TV clickers.


6 posted on 02/27/2005 6:17:30 PM PST by bayourod (Unless we get over 40% of the Hispanic vote in 2008, President Hillary will take all your guns away.)
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To: seadevil

How about when some housewife sets off a rocket barrage with her door opener. LOL.


7 posted on 02/27/2005 6:18:30 PM PST by glock rocks (WYGIWYG)
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To: Denver Ditdat
:-)

Fort Detrick Radio System Jams Remote Garage Doors

This is very good news!

m

:-)

SHUSH!

8 posted on 02/27/2005 6:26:03 PM PST by maestro
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To: bayourod

Not the IR ones.


9 posted on 02/27/2005 6:26:40 PM PST by Bogey78O (*tagline removed per request*)
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To: seadevil

I'm not referring to lawsuits against the government but rather against the maker of the gd opener (which is what the people are calling them right about now). I agree that the feds are entitled to use those frequencies. But I wouldn't be so quick to claim that the manufacturer has no liability. I'm thinking that if a widely used national brand is involved, there might be some dickering room on the price of the refit kit.


10 posted on 02/27/2005 6:27:17 PM PST by NonValueAdded ("We're going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good" HRC 6/28/2004)
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To: Denver Ditdat

BTTT


11 posted on 02/27/2005 6:28:23 PM PST by Fiddlstix (This Tagline for sale. (Presented by TagLines R US))
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To: Denver Ditdat
"I think the Army ought to buy us a new opener or pay for a converter," Marty Kreps, professional whiner, told The Washington Post. "If the government was fair, they'd give us a tax deduction," Michael Foster, who is in favor of higher taxes regardless, said... "

Oh man, the Army --and the government-- same thing I suppose, is so stoopid, I could spit. Shame on them for imposing their goldarned rules on us, using their own reserved radio frequencies, to have a worthy communications system!

Many more lives would have been saved on 9/11 if only radio communications were better... oh, but the Army and the dumb gubmint is stopping our garage door openers, blah blah blah

I'd better quit now.

12 posted on 02/27/2005 6:40:03 PM PST by LurkedLongEnough (Delight the few.)
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To: glock rocks
How about when some housewife sets off a rocket barrage with her door opener


They don't call it Fort Doom for nothing
13 posted on 02/27/2005 6:43:37 PM PST by Cowman
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To: Denver Ditdat

Land Mobile Radio (LMR) has been around DOD for decades....it's of course just a frequency sharing issue. FCC is the culprit as even Uncle Sugar has to ask for frequency use. At least we did prior to and up to 1998 when I retired........


14 posted on 02/27/2005 6:43:57 PM PST by Squantos (Be polite. Be professional. But, have a plan to kill everyone you meet. )
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To: glock rocks

Quit callin me honey.......


15 posted on 02/27/2005 6:44:54 PM PST by Squantos (Be polite. Be professional. But, have a plan to kill everyone you meet. )
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To: Squantos
Quit callin me honey.......



Only if you stop calling me Shirley
16 posted on 02/27/2005 6:49:07 PM PST by Cowman
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To: Denver Ditdat

It would seem if the manufacturer is using the Army's frequency it would be up to the manufacturer to pay for the change. Funny thi gis the Army talking from Fort Detrick to the Pentagon, Thats a long wasy , Down here where I live the local Fire Department cant get to headquarters 13 miles away and they just bought a new 5 million dollar radio upgrade.


17 posted on 02/27/2005 6:53:14 PM PST by sgtbono2002
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To: Denver Ditdat

On the back of the opener motor housing you will find a wire protruding from and dangling below the cover; get a helper and splice in a long piece of solid wire while the helper operates the remote from greater distances until the distance limit is established; now alternate trimming the lead by 1/4s and checking for increased distance until by repeated trial and error the maximum obtainable distance is achieved. Leave it there and hope for the best; one might also try mounting a ground plane reflector if all else fails.


18 posted on 02/27/2005 7:00:06 PM PST by Old Professer (As truth and fiction blend in the Mixmaster of History almost any sauce can be made palatable.)
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To: Denver Ditdat

I know about Part 15, our garage door opener operates on 390.000 Mc (verified with my police scanner) which is also one of the frequencies Air Force One uses according to frequency lists that I have. I'm kind of leery to use it when I think about it, I live in a flight path and when the President flies in, he always flies over my house.


19 posted on 02/27/2005 7:03:55 PM PST by Nowhere Man ("Liberalism is a mental disorder." - Michael Savage)
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To: LurkedLongEnough
Many more lives would have been saved on 9/11 if only radio communications were better... oh, but the Army and the dumb gubmint is stopping our garage door openers, blah blah blah

IIRC, a lot of New York City's commo systems as well as TV/FM stations centered on the World Trade Center and when that fell, NYC was in a world of hurt in some ways until they could get the backups in the Empire State Buulding running. WNBC-TV was able to go back on the air with a hastily made antenna posted across the river in Alpine, New Jersey on Edwin Armstrong's FM radio tower. What is kind of funny about that is David Sarnoff and Edwin Armstrong had a falling out after Sarnoff kicked Armstrong and his FM gear out of the Empire State Building in 1935 and Armstrong went to New Jersey to build his tower in the sight of Sarnoff. I bet Sarnoff was spinning in his grave over WNBC-TV broadcasting from Armstrong's tower. Naturally, like back in the 1930's to the 1950's, the Empire State Building has returned at the premiere antenna space for FM and TV broadcasting.
20 posted on 02/27/2005 7:11:10 PM PST by Nowhere Man ("Liberalism is a mental disorder." - Michael Savage)
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