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Posted: 5/4/2015 10:52:32 AM EDT
I want something that lets someone press a button outside the front door of our office and they can identify themselves or sent a signal or page to everyone using our handheld radios. Any ideas? or experience with a system like that?
Link Posted: 5/4/2015 11:06:41 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/4/2015 11:12:13 AM EDT by johnny_dot_exe]
If you want a system that will page the radios, then start searching for "XXX intercom" replacing XXX with the type of radio you have...VHF, UHF, DTMF if they're capable, etc. There are also plenty of basic wired and wireless intercom solutions, just gotta google search and pick out the models that are getting good reviews and go from there. Going wired will avoid possible headaches in the future.

There are also outdoor intercom boxes that will ring over a phone line. I set one up that rang a red buttonless phone over a 1.5-mile dry line that I made live using a small virtual line box. The box had a series of little jumper switches that allowed me to configure how the line worked. I had it set to ring only one way(intercom to phone), but when the phone picked up they could talk to each other as if it were a phone call. The intercom itself was basically a button and speaker with a built in light for night use, but it was very well built(all metal construction). Inside of that intercom were some jumpers to configure how the intercom operated, like keeping the call live until the party on the other end hung up which didn't require you to hold the intercom button. It's been a while so I don't remember the names of any of this equipment, unfortunately. I'll see if I can dig up paperwork from that project. If you did this then you would only need a physical phone, that box, a line run between the two(only one pair needed), and somewhere to place and power that box. I don't see why you wouldn't be able to split that pair to several phones, but I never tried it.

I've also set up systems for storm shelters using a Zetron box connected to a Kenwood base unit. Fire and 911 staff could hit a speed-dial on their base/handheld radios on the same frequency of that base unit to output a DTMF code to toggle a relay in that zetron box. In both of those projects that relay cut power to a mag lock so they could remotely let people in to the storm shelter. This would be overkill and very pricey for a need like yours, though. Those Zetron boxes can do far more than what I have them doing. One of those shelters used that intercom-over-dry-line I mentioned above which rang a phone at the 911 center.

ETA: Here is the intercom I used on that one project - http://www.doorking.com/telephone/1819-information-phone. Still looking for that little phone box I used to make that dry line live.
Link Posted: 5/4/2015 11:10:27 AM EDT
Cyber key?

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