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Topic # 193570 15-Mar-2016 14:41
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Question for the "Clever Ones"

 

There is always talk about having a conventional radio am/fm battery powered on hand in case of "the big one"

 

So the FM radio that is on my cell phone will that work if cellular towers are down?

 

also will terrestrial tv still function?

 

I am assuming that there is a good possibility that the internet on landlines will be down.

 

Towers will be possibly down..

 

Oh what was the case in Christchurch? What comms were up and running? Maybe CB radio? LOL





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  Reply # 1513758 15-Mar-2016 14:46
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After an earthquake you will want to conserve cellphone battery!!

 

 

 

Best bet is either a battery AM/FM radio, or a recharable one - you can get torch/radios with a handle to charge them.

 

 

 

A battery in am AM/FM radio will last a long time - days. As it could be a considerable amount of time before the electricity supply is restored. So do not plan to rely on there being an electrical supply. Period.

 

 

 

A number of cellphone towers went up and down for ages after the quake. Some were because the generators installed to power them ran out of fuel.

 

 

 

On a previous phone with a FM receiver I tried it out, but found it chewed through the battery so I stopped using the radio.


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  Reply # 1513759 15-Mar-2016 14:47
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gnfb:  <snip> Oh what was the case in Christchurch? What comms were up and running? Maybe CB radio?


The internet went down, but the cellular network kept going.





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  Reply # 1513760 15-Mar-2016 14:49
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In a major event everything will be dodgy. Cell sites will have limited life span if the grid is down and local radio stations will be either dead or on limited power. A basic battery radio or dynamo radio is the best for a survival kit.





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  Reply # 1513764 15-Mar-2016 14:52
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Biggest issue was comms was overwhelmed with people trying to ring out or in. I had to charge my cell from the car as no power for a week.





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  Reply # 1513765 15-Mar-2016 14:52
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At least the main broadcast sites in each center will have 12 hours plus of fuel on site for the generators to run the site. That and I suspect a large contract with the local tanker company to make sure its topped up where ever possible. 


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  Reply # 1513766 15-Mar-2016 14:54
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Get a good sized battery at home, 30AH to 120AH. Get a solar panel to charge it if you want to maintain it. You can get batteries and solar panels for moderate prices.





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  Reply # 1513768 15-Mar-2016 14:54
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gnfb:

 

Question for the "Clever Ones"

 

There is always talk about having a conventional radio am/fm battery powered on hand in case of "the big one"

 

So the FM radio that is on my cell phone will that work if cellular towers are down?

 

also will terrestrial tv still function?

 

I am assuming that there is a good possibility that the internet on landlines will be down.

 

Towers will be possibly down..

 

Oh what was the case in Christchurch? What comms were up and running? Maybe CB radio? LOL

 



 

I have a wind-up AM/FM radio / torch / flashing beacon. I think it was $25 from Mitre 10 or similar.

 

No need for batteries.....just give the handle a few cranks every few minutes. 

 

Something like this: http://qsquakesafe.com/product/solar-wind-up-radio/

 

 





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  Reply # 1513771 15-Mar-2016 15:00
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timmmay:

 

Get a good sized battery at home, 30AH to 120AH. Get a solar panel to charge it if you want to maintain it. You can get batteries and solar panels for moderate prices.

 

 

 

 

Good idea, but Ive never seen any, as Ive never looked. Where would we get these from?


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  Reply # 1513774 15-Mar-2016 15:07
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tdgeek:

 

 

 

Good idea, but Ive never seen any, as Ive never looked. Where would we get these from?

 

 

You can buy batteries with a solar panel built in from Amazon. Alternately @jeffnz can sometimes get batteries for a reasonable price, then just grab any size solar panel and solar charge regulator you want from trademe. I haven't gotten around to it yet, because getting the panel onto the roof sounds like too much hassle. However I might just get a small panel, 20W or something, and use it in an emergency. For regular I'll just charge it from the mains.





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  Reply # 1513775 15-Mar-2016 15:07
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 If it all goes south,

 

A single cetralised radio tower is reasonably easy to maintain/repair/operate, compared to potentially hundreds of cellular towers,

 

You can chopper in parts/fuel if you have no access, and from this single point you can potentially communicate with a very large number of people either in homes or cars.

 

And with a crystal set you could even do AM without batteries.....

 

 


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  Reply # 1513777 15-Mar-2016 15:10
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Linuxluver:

gnfb:


Question for the "Clever Ones"


There is always talk about having a conventional radio am/fm battery powered on hand in case of "the big one"


So the FM radio that is on my cell phone will that work if cellular towers are down?


also will terrestrial tv still function?


I am assuming that there is a good possibility that the internet on landlines will be down.


Towers will be possibly down..


Oh what was the case in Christchurch? What comms were up and running? Maybe CB radio? LOL





I have a wind-up AM/FM radio / torch / flashing beacon. I think it was $25 from Mitre 10 or similar.


No need for batteries.....just give the handle a few cranks every few minutes. 


Something like this: http://qsquakesafe.com/product/solar-wind-up-radio/


 


The good ones are OK, the bad ones do not last long. I had one of these cheap ones the handle broke. No AM iirc. Get a Sony or something like that water resistant also iirc.

gzt

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  Reply # 1513780 15-Mar-2016 15:15
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FM transmission tends to be relatively local and short range repeated. AM transmission is much longer range so you can easily get signal from further away stations if local infrastructure is badly damaged or unreliable.

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  Reply # 1513782 15-Mar-2016 15:18
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AFAIK (and I'm happy to be proved wrong) most cellphones sold in New Zealand do have an FM radio receiver chip and this should work OK after an earthquake, assuming the radio stations are still broadcasting. Usually you will need wired headphones, as the cable doubles as the radio receiver antenna. Personally, I have a battery powered transistor radio at home and another at work because in the event of power being out for (possibly) an extended period of time, I'd rather save my cell phone battery for attempting to contact family. 

 

A lot of FM radio chips in phones sold overseas (and it may be happening here - I really don't know) are disabled, as manufacturers/carriers want you to use paid data to listen to music streaming services (iHeart Radio, Spotify, etc.) - see: The Hidden FM Radio Inside Your Pocket, And Why You Can't Use It which claims that in the US:

 

"Most smartphone models come with a built-in FM feature. Samsung, Apple and LG are among those who have not switched on the chip, but HTC and Motorola chips haven't been blocked... Sprint has turned on the FM chip for phones on its network... It's a critical resource in an emergency. When the power grid is out, the only lifeline for the American public is having an FM tuner."

 

Terrestrial TV may function if (1) the broadcasting station itself is still operational, (2) the broadcasting tower hasn't fallen down, and (3) you still have an electrical supply at home.


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  Reply # 1513783 15-Mar-2016 15:18
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I have this solar charging torch / radio, but in practice it looks like it should cost $5 on ebay (but actually costs $25). That store is good though, I've gotten good stuff from them, water containers and such.

 

I got a USB adapter for my big 30AH batteries, to charge the phone. It also runs the router/UFB modem, and can charge my AA batteries - my AA charger works off 12V and I have the right adapter.





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  Reply # 1513784 15-Mar-2016 15:22
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And don't forget your car radio!
I would make sure one of the pre-sets is to RNZ National - they're the designated CDEM emergency broadcaster IIRC.
[567AM broadcasts from Titahi Bay and used to provide coverage all the way up to Hawera]

 

Even if your car is damaged, most likely the radio will still work and the battery will keep it going for a considerable period.
If you are lucky, you could run the car engine to charge up the battery


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