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That software is the CHIRP freeware. And you can't legally use any frequencies other than GMRS frequencies, and those only if you have the 10 year $70 FCC license.

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Both Rugged and PCI can add a channel for your use. They do it for race teams all the time. It’s unlikely, that you will find a channel that someone else isn’t using however. Depending where you ride, you might encounter a lot of traffic or never hear anyone else.
 

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Go to YouTube and search BaoFeng UV-5R. You can program from the keypad super easy.


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However, using CHIRP is much much easier. Like using a laptop vs a phone to program a spreadsheet.

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Both Rugged and PCI can add a channel for your use. They do it for race teams all the time. It’s unlikely, that you will find a channel that someone else isn’t using however. Depending where you ride, you might encounter a lot of traffic or never hear anyone else.
Correct! Our whole group (10rigs) all run Rugged Radios. Their onsite at multiple events we attend annually. Glamis Thanksgiving, UTV takeover, etc. They made us our own channel as far off the grid as they could get and programmed all of our radios. We used to get tons of side chatter using the mainstream channels like Baja Pits, but now we have our own.
 

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They used to sell their radios unlocked where you could go to any frequency you wanted and save it. Now the FCC has cracked down on them apparently and radios come locked with their pre-programmed 30 channels aka everyone and their mom will be on channels. It is very annoying and sucks Rugged isn't putting this info out there ahead of time. I had to find out the hard way, bought my 3rd radio and all of sudden couldn't set it to the frequency/channel I wanted. Essentially making the radio useless for me when communicating with my groups frequency. So I went ahead and ordered a programming cable off eBay for like $8 and downloaded free software to program it. Rugged is working with a company that supplies the cable and their software, but that route is $50 plus shipping.

I haven't received the new cable yet in the mail, so don't have any feedback about how easy or difficult it is. It should be pretty straight forward... hopefully.
 

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They used to sell their radios unlocked where you could go to any frequency you wanted and save it. Now the FCC has cracked down on them apparently and radios come locked with their pre-programmed 30 channels aka everyone and their mom will be on channels. It is very annoying and sucks Rugged isn't putting this info out there ahead of time. I had to find out the hard way, bought my 3rd radio and all of sudden couldn't set it to the frequency/channel I wanted. Essentially making the radio useless for me when communicating with my groups frequency. So I went ahead and ordered a programming cable off eBay for like $8 and downloaded free software to program it. Rugged is working with a company that supplies the cable and their software, but that route is $50 plus shipping.

I haven't received the new cable yet in the mail, so don't have any feedback about how easy or difficult it is. It should be pretty straight forward... hopefully.


I know that everybody’s on the Rugged Radio bandwagon, and they do offer good customer service. But they have been rebranding cheap Chinese radios for years. I don’t really understand how they have never been called out on this, but it is what it is. With a few Internet searches and the willingness to try, you can have everything they offer at a fraction of the cost. I have been using the TYT TH-9000D 60 watt in a direct fit Rugged Radio mount for over year and a half now with no issues. I picked up a frequency chart off of Rugged Radios website that they pre-set in the units they sell and programmed the TYT radio with the same names and frequencies for ease of communicating with writing partners that are currently using rugged radios. All channels were programmed from the face of the radio in little over an hour. And now if this is true that they are selling their radios locked seems to me even more of a reason to search out other options.

https://www.ruggedradios.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=296_1127&products_id=1274
BaoFeng UV-5R Dual Band Two Way Radio (Black) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B007H4VT7A/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_LWyGDbSR4NS58

https://www.ruggedradios.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=296_26&products_id=2013
TYT TH-9000D 136-174MHz 60W 200CH 8 Group Scrambler Car Truck Mobile Ham Radio https://www.amazon.com/dp/B006QMM9XM/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_JZKGDbXWGFJ0X

Here is what Rugged calls their FP-RM25.

QYT KT-8900 Mini Dual Band Mobile Transceiver 2M 136-174MHz/70cm 400-480MHz 25W Amateur Car Radio (HAM) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077M6D1WQ/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_XaLGDb5CRKJ22

Here is what Rugged calls their RM25R-WP waterproof radio.

TYT TH-8600 Dual Band Mini Mobile Transceiver IP67 Waterproof Car Radio 2M/70CM 25W Amateur Two Way Radio w/Cable https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07F3WXL2V/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_SeLGDbA15MQDY


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They used to sell their radios unlocked where you could go to any frequency you wanted and save it. Now the FCC has cracked down on them apparently and radios come locked with their pre-programmed 30 channels aka everyone and their mom will be on channels. It is very annoying and sucks Rugged isn't putting this info out there ahead of time. I had to find out the hard way, bought my 3rd radio and all of sudden couldn't set it to the frequency/channel I wanted. Essentially making the radio useless for me when communicating with my groups frequency. So I went ahead and ordered a programming cable off eBay for like $8 and downloaded free software to program it. Rugged is working with a company that supplies the cable and their software, but that route is $50 plus shipping.

I haven't received the new cable yet in the mail, so don't have any feedback about how easy or difficult it is. It should be pretty straight forward... hopefully.


I know that everybody’s on the Rugged Radio bandwagon, and they do offer good customer service. But they have been rebranding cheap Chinese radios for years. I don’t really understand how they have never been called out on this, but it is what it is. With a few Internet searches and the willingness to try, you can have everything they offer at a fraction of the cost. I have been using the TYT TH-9000D 60 watt in a direct fit Rugged Radio mount for over year and a half now with no issues. I picked up a frequency chart off of Rugged Radios website that they pre-set in the units they sell and programmed the TYT radio with the same names and frequencies for ease of communicating with writing partners that are currently using rugged radios. All channels were programmed from the face of the radio in little over an hour. And now if this is true that they are selling their radios locked seems to me even more of a reason to search out other options.

https://www.ruggedradios.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=296_1127&products_id=1274
BaoFeng UV-5R Dual Band Two Way Radio (Black) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B007H4VT7A/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_LWyGDbSR4NS58

https://www.ruggedradios.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=296_26&products_id=2013
TYT TH-9000D 136-174MHz 60W 200CH 8 Group Scrambler Car Truck Mobile Ham Radio https://www.amazon.com/dp/B006QMM9XM/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_JZKGDbXWGFJ0X

Here is what Rugged calls their FP-RM25.

QYT KT-8900 Mini Dual Band Mobile Transceiver 2M 136-174MHz/70cm 400-480MHz 25W Amateur Car Radio (HAM) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077M6D1WQ/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_XaLGDb5CRKJ22

Here is what Rugged calls their RM25R-WP waterproof radio.

TYT TH-8600 Dual Band Mini Mobile Transceiver IP67 Waterproof Car Radio 2M/70CM 25W Amateur Two Way Radio w/Cable https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07F3WXL2V/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_SeLGDbA15MQDY


Sent from my iPhone using RZRForums.net
True on everything you said, however, what they do is wire in a jumper cable on the radio to work with intercoms. I haven't found a suitable intercom company that I can wire with a 3rd party radio. This is really what you're paying for with Rugged. Otherwise like you say they are just a middle man. Then they also program the radio, which sure is a benefit or was a benefit. Now that the radios are locked and I can't change the programming on the radio itself sucks big time. I am going to play with the software once I get the data cable in the mail and see if I can unlock it! I imagine it should be easy to do as this is no state of the art devices we are talking about. Should be a simple setting. Or even I may have to do some sort of factory reset and then just re-program the memory channels. Either way, I'm determined to get around this locked radio.
 

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They used to sell their radios unlocked where you could go to any frequency you wanted and save it. Now the FCC has cracked down on them apparently and radios come locked with their pre-programmed 30 channels aka everyone and their mom will be on channels. It is very annoying and sucks Rugged isn't putting this info out there ahead of time. I had to find out the hard way, bought my 3rd radio and all of sudden couldn't set it to the frequency/channel I wanted. Essentially making the radio useless for me when communicating with my groups frequency. So I went ahead and ordered a programming cable off eBay for like $8 and downloaded free software to program it. Rugged is working with a company that supplies the cable and their software, but that route is $50 plus shipping.

I haven't received the new cable yet in the mail, so don't have any feedback about how easy or difficult it is. It should be pretty straight forward... hopefully.


I know that everybody’s on the Rugged Radio bandwagon, and they do offer good customer service. But they have been rebranding cheap Chinese radios for years. I don’t really understand how they have never been called out on this, but it is what it is. With a few Internet searches and the willingness to try, you can have everything they offer at a fraction of the cost. I have been using the TYT TH-9000D 60 watt in a direct fit Rugged Radio mount for over year and a half now with no issues. I picked up a frequency chart off of Rugged Radios website that they pre-set in the units they sell and programmed the TYT radio with the same names and frequencies for ease of communicating with writing partners that are currently using rugged radios. All channels were programmed from the face of the radio in little over an hour. And now if this is true that they are selling their radios locked seems to me even more of a reason to search out other options.

https://www.ruggedradios.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=296_1127&products_id=1274
BaoFeng UV-5R Dual Band Two Way Radio (Black) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B007H4VT7A/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_LWyGDbSR4NS58

https://www.ruggedradios.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=296_26&products_id=2013
TYT TH-9000D 136-174MHz 60W 200CH 8 Group Scrambler Car Truck Mobile Ham Radio https://www.amazon.com/dp/B006QMM9XM/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_JZKGDbXWGFJ0X

Here is what Rugged calls their FP-RM25.

QYT KT-8900 Mini Dual Band Mobile Transceiver 2M 136-174MHz/70cm 400-480MHz 25W Amateur Car Radio (HAM) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077M6D1WQ/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_XaLGDb5CRKJ22

Here is what Rugged calls their RM25R-WP waterproof radio.

TYT TH-8600 Dual Band Mini Mobile Transceiver IP67 Waterproof Car Radio 2M/70CM 25W Amateur Two Way Radio w/Cable https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07F3WXL2V/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_SeLGDbA15MQDY


Sent from my iPhone using RZRForums.net
True on everything you said, however, what they do is wire in a jumper cable on the radio to work with intercoms. I haven't found a suitable intercom company that I can wire with a 3rd party radio. This is really what you're paying for with Rugged. Otherwise like you say they are just a middle man. Then they also program the radio, which sure is a benefit or was a benefit. Now that the radios are locked and I can't change the programming on the radio itself sucks big time. I am going to play with the software once I get the data cable in the mail and see if I can unlock it! I imagine it should be easy to do as this is no state of the art devices we are talking about. Should be a simple setting. Or even I may have to do some sort of factory reset and then just re-program the memory channels. Either way, I'm determined to get around this locked radio.
You can program as many channels as you wish with the software. If you have a radio with all the channels RR used to program in you can download them into the software and upload them into a new radio. Very simple from what I'm told.
 

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You can program as many channels as you wish with the software. If you have a radio with all the channels RR used to program in you can download them into the software and upload them into a new radio. Very simple from what I'm told.
I want to do more than just program an infinite number of channels. I want to program channels and unlock it so I can manually go to any frequency I want when on the trail. Think of it like this, run into a random group of people and they all have radios. They tell you hey tune to channel 155.500, however, because I don't have that pre-programmed and my radio is locked, I can't. That is what I want to avoid. I want to on-demand go to whatever frequency I want. I want to also be able to be like hey there's a lot of random chatter on this frequency let's go to XXX.XXX instead or just scroll through random frequencies to find an empty one. IF everyone scrolling through the same 30 pre-programmed channels rugged has good luck finding an empty one. At least at a place like Glamis. Luckily right now all my friends and I have the unlocked (older) rugged radios and can still do that. My new one however, I can't. That is my base camp radio. So it will get unlocked one way or another.

I also want to figure out how to unlock them so when I have a friend who buys a new one, we can unlock it from the get-go and have no issues with communications once on the trail. As there won't be any programming going on while on a ride.
 

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You can program as many channels as you wish with the software. If you have a radio with all the channels RR used to program in you can download them into the software and upload them into a new radio. Very simple from what I'm told.
I want to do more than just program an infinite number of channels. I want to program channels and unlock it so I can manually go to any frequency I want when on the trail. Think of it like this, run into a random group of people and they all have radios. They tell you hey tune to channel 155.500, however, because I don't have that pre-programmed and my radio is locked, I can't. That is what I want to avoid. I want to on-demand go to whatever frequency I want. I want to also be able to be like hey there's a lot of random chatter on this frequency let's go to XXX.XXX instead or just scroll through random frequencies to find an empty one. IF everyone scrolling through the same 30 pre-programmed channels rugged has good luck finding an empty one. At least at a place like Glamis. Luckily right now all my friends and I have the unlocked (older) rugged radios and can still do that. My new one however, I can't. That is my base camp radio. So it will get unlocked one way or another.

I also want to figure out how to unlock them so when I have a friend who buys a new one, we can unlock it from the get-go and have no issues with communications once on the trail. As there won't be any programming going on while on a ride.
All your wishes will come true with the software and programming cable.
 

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Dsrew619 .... what radio did you buy?


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RM60, though this new locking of radios is not unique to that model. Rugged was told by the FCC they must lock all of their radios, if not they could be fined. I talked to them at Sand Sports Super Show about it. I assume this locking of radios is true or being enforced by the FCC to any USA supplier/seller of radios including PCI.
 

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On the Quick-Start Guide for every radio Rugged sells:

FCC Licensing Information:

This FCC Certified two-way radio operates on radio frequencies that are regulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). To transmit on these frequencies,
you are required to have a license. For questions regarding licensing, we recommend you contact Forest Industries Telecommunications (FIT) at 888-583-2929 or visit
their website at https://fcclicense.org/fit

This also applies to any CCR (cheap chinese radio) like Baofeng, TYT or others. New rules will prohibit some of them from being sold in US unless transmit power and available frequencies are limited, for instance not being able to transmit 8 watts on FRS frequencies.
 

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Dsrew619 .... what radio did you buy?


Sent from my iPhone using RZRForums.net
RM60, though this new locking of radios is not unique to that model. Rugged was told by the FCC they must lock all of their radios, if not they could be fined. I talked to them at Sand Sports Super Show about it. I assume this locking of radios is true or being enforced by the FCC to any USA supplier/seller of radios including PCI.


You may try restoring the radio back to its factory settings. This may override what Rugged locked. You would then have to reprogram your channels.


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I want to do more than just program an infinite number of channels. I want to program channels and unlock it so I can manually go to any frequency I want when on the trail. Think of it like this, run into a random group of people and they all have radios. They tell you hey tune to channel 155.500, however, because I don't have that pre-programmed and my radio is locked, I can't. That is what I want to avoid. I want to on-demand go to whatever frequency I want. I want to also be able to be like hey there's a lot of random chatter on this frequency let's go to XXX.XXX instead or just scroll through random frequencies to find an empty one. IF everyone scrolling through the same 30 pre-programmed channels rugged has good luck finding an empty one. At least at a place like Glamis. Luckily right now all my friends and I have the unlocked (older) rugged radios and can still do that. My new one however, I can't. That is my base camp radio. So it will get unlocked one way or another.

I also want to figure out how to unlock them so when I have a friend who buys a new one, we can unlock it from the get-go and have no issues with communications once on the trail. As there won't be any programming going on while on a ride.
This is not a good plan. If you want to do this, get the ham or GMRS license and know what is legal and what is not. Without a license and a list of available frequencies to choose from, you're liable to end up on a law enforcement, or search & rescue, or a repeater channel and create problems. If you just want to talk in your group without a license, use FRS handhelds on the channels that allow max FRS power (1-7, 15-22) and use privacy codes to squelch out those not in your group.
FRS/GMRS combined channel chart

Like many, I bought an 8 watt Baofeng handheld. Then I started to learn what the requirements and limits were. Sometimes I wish I had stayed with FRS...
 

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I want to do more than just program an infinite number of channels. I want to program channels and unlock it so I can manually go to any frequency I want when on the trail. Think of it like this, run into a random group of people and they all have radios. They tell you hey tune to channel 155.500, however, because I don't have that pre-programmed and my radio is locked, I can't. That is what I want to avoid. I want to on-demand go to whatever frequency I want. I want to also be able to be like hey there's a lot of random chatter on this frequency let's go to XXX.XXX instead or just scroll through random frequencies to find an empty one. IF everyone scrolling through the same 30 pre-programmed channels rugged has good luck finding an empty one. At least at a place like Glamis. Luckily right now all my friends and I have the unlocked (older) rugged radios and can still do that. My new one however, I can't. That is my base camp radio. So it will get unlocked one way or another.

I also want to figure out how to unlock them so when I have a friend who buys a new one, we can unlock it from the get-go and have no issues with communications once on the trail. As there won't be any programming going on while on a ride.
This is not a good plan. If you want to do this, get the ham or GMRS license and know what is legal and what is not. Without a license and a list of available frequencies to choose from, you're liable to end up on a law enforcement, or search & rescue, or a repeater channel and create problems. If you just want to talk in your group without a license, use FRS handhelds on the channels that allow max FRS power (1-7, 15-22) and use privacy codes to squelch out those not in your group.
FRS/GMRS combined channel chart

Like many, I bought an 8 watt Baofeng handheld. Then I started to learn what the requirements and limits were. Sometimes I wish I had stayed with FRS...
Ha I'm not worried about the FCC chasing me for using my radio without a license. I will be unlocking it. I saw their rules as to what you're promising to obey with your license, and that is all normal common stuff I do anyways. So I already don't violate their rules, not going to pay a fee to acknowledge to them who I am and that I will obey the rules. Thanks though.
 

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Ha I'm not worried about the FCC chasing me for using my radio without a license. I will be unlocking it. I saw their rules as to what you're promising to obey with your license, and that is all normal common stuff I do anyways. So I already don't violate their rules, not going to pay a fee to acknowledge to them who I am and that I will obey the rules. Thanks though.
That's your prerogative, but please don't advocate breaking the law on RZR Forums. Transmitting without a license is already "violating their rules". Unlocking your radio would be "violating their rules". Transmitting on unauthorized channels ("violating their rules") might be recorded and might be used to locate you; names or address or phone number might slip out inadvertently. Your choice, I know, but please don't advocate it here.
 
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