On Topic Rugged Radios

SMS81

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Hey Steve I will take that challenge. Know a few who do. But they are in the manufacturing industry which tend to be very far from the public line light.

What’s your stake in the company? Sales/service?

Maybe you could answer why is there such a huge mark up on the rugged rebranded radios that are marketed to the offroad community?
I have no dog in this fight, but how can you be sure it is a rebranded product or one that just looks the same? I know a Rigid light bar will cost me $1200 but I can get one on Amazon that looks exactly the same for $55. Just because it looks the same doesn't mean it is. I could be wrong, but I cant believe it is the same rebranded product. I would assume it is a cheap knock off of a popular product?
 
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MTPyle

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Pretty sure the company that sells the cheaper one online is not at the races supporting us.

pretty much every business has products and services that they mark up and sell. That’s pretty much what a business is. They add value and customers are willing to pay for that value.

Mike
 
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usmcgunrock

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I have no dog in this fight, but how can you be sure it is a rebranded product or one that just looks the same? I know a Rigid light bar will cost me $1200 but I hi can get one on Amazon that looks exactly the same for $55. Just because it looks the same doesn't mean it is. I could be wrong, but I cant believe it is the same rebranded product. I would assume it is a cheap knock off of a popular product.

Look up TYT radios. Same hardware, buttons, mics, programming software, etc. some of the radio HAM guys have gone through them also. If they are different then that’s awesome but anytime the question is raised the reply is deflection and can’t explain what is different.
 

usmcgunrock

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Pretty sure the company that sells the cheaper one online is not at the races supporting us.

pretty much every business has products and services that they mark up and sell. That’s pretty much what a business is. They add value and customers are willing to pay for that value.

Mike

I get that. I work in manufacturing. We make a product for a company with their branding along with our own version of it. Same product but with visual differences. We have a suggested retail which is about what we sell our product for. They choose what they sell their version for but not what they got it from us for since they buy in bulk. So we make money, they make money, and the customer gets a good priced product. But if that company marked up over twice what they get the product for they wouldn’t sell any because it is a market that a lot of people know the products. Now if that product is marketed to a crowd that is not familiar with the products and then marked up even more since they know the crowd they are marketing to does not know any better… is that still normal business practices?

Hopefully I am wrong but have never seen anything that says otherwise.
 

Borracho Cantina

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What’s your stake in the company? Sales/service?

Maybe you could answer why is there such a huge mark up on the rugged rebranded radios that are marketed to the offroad community?[/QUOTE]

Call him. He left his phone number.
 

MTPyle

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I honestly do not know what I can buy the same
Handheld online that Rugged sells. I would assume it’s way less. But just like with Rigid I have no problem buying a product that cost more when I know I am getting good support. I was not always this way. Haha. I would spend days of my time to save money on things like that.

at the end of the day it’s up to the customer to decide if it’s worth the asking price. Clearly many agree it is. Including myself. I knew I was paying a premium but I also knew I was getting premium support so it was a good deal.

I agree things can be priced too high and it seems like companies take advantage but it’s a free market and nobody has to buy radios from any vendor. They can just buy the stuff online. Well except for when they are in the desert. Then they have no choice if they want them.

Mike
 

Racer277

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I have bought the boa fangs from both amazon and rugged.
I prefer to spend the extra and buy the radio pre programmed from rugged.
They have better service and are at the races in case I need a change or help.
And I have used that help from them.

When you are at tech are you hoping that hamradiooutlet.com is going to help you immediately and in person?
I cannot imagine there is anyone that doesn't know you can buy the radios cheaper but who do you want your money going to and why?
 
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usmcgunrock

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I have bought the boa fangs from both amazon and rugged.
I prefer to spend the extra and buy the radio pre programmed from rugged.
They have better service and are at the races in case I need a change or help.
And I have used that help from them.

When you are at tech are you hoping that hamradiooutlet.com is going to help you immediately and in person?
I cannot imagine there is anyone that doesn't know you can buy the radios cheaper but who do you want your money going to and why?

I am not new to racing and I know what it is like to have and not have vendor support at races. But thanks for bursting my bumble that the ham radio store wasn't going to follow me around and work on my comms. I have also used both Rugged and PCI for support with different racing programs. I lean more to the commercial grade radios in a race application and go both ways on intercom systems with Rugged or PCI. Chase radios I build my own setups.

I have also bought baofeng radios off amazon. But have programmed them myself. Not too difficult.
Call him. He left his phone number.

I was going to but it was too late in the evening and didn't want to be rude. So sent him a DM. If he doesn't come back on then I will.

I honestly do not know what I can buy the same
Handheld online that Rugged sells. I would assume it’s way less. But just like with Rigid I have no problem buying a product that cost more when I know I am getting good support. I was not always this way. Haha. I would spend days of my time to save money on things like that.

at the end of the day it’s up to the customer to decide if it’s worth the asking price. Clearly many agree it is. Including myself. I knew I was paying a premium but I also knew I was getting premium support so it was a good deal.

I agree things can be priced too high and it seems like companies take advantage but it’s a free market and nobody has to buy radios from any vendor. They can just buy the stuff online. Well except for when they are in the desert. Then they have no choice if they want them.

Mike

I agree about the vendor/market. And the desert haha. Rugged does have some cool accessories and great intercoms. I just would never pay for one of the RM series radios that have a huge mark up no matter how much support comes with that radio. And the FCC thing is about the RM series radios.
 

bajafox

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Personally I hope Rugged sticks around. Competition is good for the sport, at least I read that a lot on here.

Took me a long time to save up for a PCI radio. Not everyone has PCI funds.
 

NIKAL

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I’m confident in saying the Rugged Handheld is manufactured by BaoFeng. Not sure about other incar radios? But I bought a HR5 “blue radio” and around a year later I was having an issue where I could hear, but I could not transmit out. I called Rugged to see if something was locked, or if the push to talk buttons can be fixed? They told me to keep the battery, send the radio back and they would send me a new radio minus battery, as they suspected it was a bad button. Oh and they put all my extra (10) channels in the new radio. I’m 99.9% sure if I ordered a Boafeng from Amazon or some odd site I’d be SOL. So for me paying a few bucks more was worth the service.
 

Bro_Gill

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The issue is, the handheld Baofongs are capable of transmitting on reserved emergency channels in California and other states, which is a crime in and of itself by non-emergency people. Simply push the right buttons when programming a frequency and suddenly you are chattering on the same channel that your local fire department dispatches on, and you can cover the dispatch tones and prevent dispatches from going out. Narrow banding only solved part of the problem as many channels were already in use and could not be changed as they were for statewide use for large emergencies and disasters across the board for all emergency response agencies. I would use my baofong as a second radio on incidents for non-repeater channels (direct as we call it) so I could monitor 2 channels separately and the smaller size of the baofong meant I wasn't carrying 2 bricks on my chest. The other issue is, Rugged programs assigned channels into these radios and it causes the licensed users to have to put up with all the chitchat traffic from non-licensed users in places like Barstow, where we constantly have tot ell people to get off our assigned channel at races who are out cruising around in their golf carts near Calico!
 

MTPyle

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Bro

I totally agree. But again that’s not a Rugged issue. That’s a desert radio issue that many companies including PCI are causing.

not sure what the solution is but if it does not get under control soon it will be a real problem for us. I think requiring a license is a good way to help control it. At least then in that process the user would understand the law and how to use the frequency. Currently I bet 95% of the people using these frequencies in our sport have no idea they are breaking the law and potentially causing harm to legal commercial operators.

really the recreation users should be on the channels the FCC assigned to that group. Then the racers can use the channels they get licensed for.

I think Rugged and PCI need to work together with the FCC to come up with a good solution. Or the FCC will just start to go after us racers.

Mike
 
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SMS81

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The report makes it seem like when confronted about what was going on they tried to BS the FCC. That might not have been a step in the right direction.

I disagree, they clearly admitted fault and rectified it. PCI nor Rugged can control what frequency we are using. Anyone can purchase the programming software.
 

sand shark

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This explains why the radios started coming locked and with fewer channels. My radio I could program/fine tune the frequencies with the knob. Friends that purchased the same set up several months later could not.

I have a friend that buys the radios off Amazon or Ebay. You have to get a cable from Rugged to hook up the intercom to the radio, which normally goes in the mic port. If you buy them from Rugger you connect the intercom on the back of the radio as they add a wire to allow this. People forget that Rugged sets up the radios so it easily interfaces with intercom and provide you will all the necessary wires/cables to make it an easy install.

Those that complain about the cost - Once you buy the radio from Amazon, the programmer and all the cables/wires need you are maybe saving a few dollars over getting a kit all set up.
 

cubed

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The Rugged citation is for selling keypad programmable radios, while those are legal in other countries they are not legal to sell in the US.

I have paid for a licensed private frequency for my business, one thing not mentioned so far is that most if not all of these licences are limited to a specific geographic location, mine gives me a 60 mile radius from my base. The same frequency will not be licensed again within a certain distance to limit interference. Just because you have a licence in the Wasatch front in Utah or the San Diego area does not mean your radio is legal in the Las Vegas area, there is a good chance you will be walking on another license outside your area. My licensed frequency happens to be the same as a prominent trophy truck teams #2 channel, they at times have complained about "the idiots using THEIR channel" when my crew were just trying to get the job done. As an off road guy I have sometimes turned off my repeater and used my talk around channel during a race as a courtesy to the racer, but I certainly am not required to, even if they have a license it is not valid in my area.
Trunked channels with multiple users are common in populated areas and those are a whole different deal.
Narrow band has been implemented to roughly double the number of frequencies available to license, basically stuff another channel between every existing channel, it is now illegal to program a wideband channel into a radio, it is also illegal to operate a wideband radio (yay, criminals we are, one and all) The communications company I use for my business radios will no longer program or service wideband radios because they can lose their licences if they do.

Point is we are operating illegally in many ways, and it is virtually impossible to get legal. Nobody seems to care because of the limited short term nature and mostly remote location of the violations, very few legal operators are being affected so it gets little attention by the authorities. If we get lots of year around violators (recreational users) near populated areas this will become an issue for regulators and result in a crackdown for sure.
 

bajafox

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In Baja, on more than one occasion I've had people ask me if I had a radio and could try reaching their team. The only way I was able to do that was with a modded ICOM radio I used to use that was programmable. It does have it's advantages in Baja when someone needs help and you need to enter their frequency to help them reach their team, not often, but it has happened to me more than once.
 

dan200

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I disagree, they clearly admitted fault and rectified it. PCI nor Rugged can control what frequency we are using. Anyone can purchase the programming software.
5. In response to these complaints, the Spectrum Enforcement Division (Division) issued an initial letter of inquiry (LOI) to Rugged Radios on August 14, 2018.6 The LOI directed the company to state whether six radio frequency devices had been properly tested and certified under the Commission’s rules and whether they operated within the proper technical parameters of their respective certifications. The LOI also inquired whether the six models included the proper labels and user information disclosures. Rugged Radios provided incomplete, inconsistent, or inaccurate statements in its LOI response.7 Ultimately, the Division found it necessary to issue a series of further inquiries in order to obtain information needed to resolve the investigation.8 While Rugged Radios would repeatedly provide inaccurate information about the compliance of certain devices in succeeding responses,9 it ultimately corrected the inaccurate information in its final response.


TLDR- at some point a lawyer told them to stop bullshitting the FCC.
 
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