After my last post someone referred to an expensive AM/FM radio as a great “burner” item. I like this idea. We have all heard of “burner” phones in movies and the news lately. For those not familiar, in our context a burner kit would consist of “disposable” communications gear.

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In this day and age with all of the high tech communications gear, we sometimes overlook the simpler things. This post is not about fancy comm gear or mind blowing tricks…its about good ole fashion AM/FM radio. Don’t stop reading…this is important.

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Here is a little something to put into your scanner…..These frequencies can be received with any analog conventional scanner. At first glance you may think, how are these frequencies relevant to grid down?  Well they are not. But…….the purpose of monitoring them is. All of the frequencies are in FM mode.

  • 137.100
  • 137.620
  • 137.910
  • 137.850
  • 137.300

With a little open source research you should be able to figure out what they are, some of you may already know. Put them into a utility scanner and let them run. It may take a while to get any hits, but,  with patience you should intercept something. If you use an outdoor antenna your success will improve. Give it a try and next post I will reveal the purpose of this exercise.  Feel free to post your logs or thoughts.

Dialtone OUT.


My Small Friend


When operating in my local AO I like to know what’s going on around me.  I try to carry a radio at all times but it’s not always possible. The Motorola minitor above rides on my belt and is programed with my local fire dispatch frequency. I am not currently a member of a local fire department but know one thinks twice when they see this compact radio on my side. These units can be found on ebay,  craigslist and ham fest for around  $20-$60 dollars.  One thing to remember is they must be programmed by a radio shop or someone with the radio interface box and software.  Also make sure the unit you get is in the frequency range of your monitoring target.


Minitor seen here for size comparison

Dialtone OUT.