SCANNING  TIPS

 

GETTING STARTED

 

  1. Purchase a scanner that fits your needs. If you are looking to listen to police, fire, and other emergency frequencies you will need a scanner with trunking capabilities. If you are using a scanner mainly for racing you will not need the trunking function.
  2. You probably should have a 100-200 channel scanner. I have found more channels to be better especially if you attend races where more than one series is running. Some scanner manufacturers offer special modifications to double and triple the number of channels.
  3. If you are planning to purchase a scanner make sure that it is computer programmable. Most companies will include the software as part of the purchase. Computer programming will save you a great deal of time and it will allow you to enjoy the races even more.
  4. Be sure to read the scanner manual carefully and follow all the directions.

 

 

PROGRAMMING THE SCANNER

 

  1. One method is to program the driver frequency to the corresponding channel number such as car #8 into channel #8. The drawbacks to this are drivers having several frequencies or cars having the same number. The advantage is that it’s easier to identify the driver you are listening to by looking at the scanner.
  2. The second method is bank scanning. That means loading each bank of channels for a different purpose. For example you could have one bank for the top 10 drivers, another bank for track frequencies, one for officials, and another one for misc. frequencies.
  3. A third method is a combination of the first two, which is what I prefer to use. I program in car to channel frequencies for a series such as the CRA Super Series. Then I use a bank for tracks and officials and then another bank for alternate or secondary driver frequencies. And finally another bank for unknown frequencies that have been picked up on race day at the track.

 

 

BATTERIES

 

  1. Make sure you use the appropriate batteries recommended by the scanner manufacturer.
  2. Keep battery packs charged during periods of extended non-use or storage. Deep discharge of rechargeable batteries can and will reduce or destroy their usefulness.
  3. Always have at least one fully charged battery pack in reserve. Nothing is more annoying than to have your batteries go dead halfway through a race.

 

 

HEADSETS

 

  1. The most important information is to get the best headset that you can afford.
  2. Make sure they are noise-canceling headsets with a least a 20 decibel quieting rating.
  3. At the very least always have some foam type earplugs available for use. Always make sure that any kids with you have some form of ear protection on.

 

 

ACCESSORIES

 

  1. Splitter---this allows two headsets to be hooked up to one scanner.
  2. Leg Strap---this will prevent your scanner from possibly falling through the bleachers when you stand up to see something on the track.

 

 

FINDING NEW FREQUENCIES

 

  1. Tracks. Search between 150-155 MHz and also between 450-470 MHz.
  2. Drivers. Search mainly between 460-470 MHz. You might also check between 450-460 MHz for a small number of drivers that use this band.
  3. Best time to search for new frequencies.
    1. Caution flag periods. This is literally a beehive of activity, as you should listen for driver’s first names, or car positions on the track, etc.
    2. Out of car driver intros. They usually start at the back of the field. After the driver has been introduced and gets hooked up his crew chief will run a radio check. If you are searching in the 460-470 band you might get lucky and grab a new frequency.
    3. Pre-race autograph sessions. Most of the drivers will not know their frequency but one of his crewmembers nearby will know. Just ask.
    4. During hot laps or practice. Some tracks are very accommodating to fans and will let you enter early to watch practice. Since the number of cars on the track at any one time is usually limited it is an excellent time to pick up new frequencies.
    5. Ask another fan. An excellent source for frequencies. Someone else may have a frequency that you are looking for and you might have one that they need. All you have to do is ask---it’s that simple. I have met and made many new friends at racetracks doing just this. Pretty soon you may develop a mini network for gathering frequencies.
    6. Check the Internet. There are many websites that have frequency lists some of which are pay services and others are free. This website, www.greatlakesfreq.com is a free service so enjoy! There are also some tracks that include frequency lists in their programs but these are pretty rare.

 

 

USE OF NUMERIC FREQUENCY LISTS

 

  1. The purpose of these is quite simple since it saves time in looking up frequencies in a normal list.
  2. Frequencies are grouped in a numerical order—all 450’s together then 460, 461, 462, up to 470, etc.
  3. Lets say you are searching between 460-470 MHz and you find an active frequency. You go to the numeric list and quickly check to see if it’s an unknown or a regular frequency. If it’s not on your numeric list then you place the frequency in the “unknown” bank that I referred to earlier in the Tips. You will probably end up with several frequencies in that “unknown” bank and eventually those will be identified as the race event goes on.

 

SUGGESTIONS AND TIPS

 

If you have any scanning suggestions or tips that you would like to pass along just email them to greatlakesfreq@yahoo.com so they can be included in future revisions of this section.

 

SPECIAL THANKS

 

I would like to thank Mike Delaney for letting me use some of his information in this section.

 

 

 

 

 

 

UPCOMING

EVENTS

 

 

 

June 7th

JEGS All Stars Tour

Dixie Motor Speedway (MI)

 

 

 

June 8th

ARCA Midwest Tour

Dells Raceway Park (WI)

 

 

 

June 8th

Main Event Series

Shadybowl Speedway (OH)

 

 

 

June 8th

Stan Perry Memorial Tune-up

Angola Motorsport Speedway (IN)

 

 

 

June 15th

ARCA/CRA Super Series

Battle at Berlin 251

Berlin Raceway (MI)

 

 

 

June 15th

Stan Perry Memorial

Angola Motorsport Speedway (IN)