Jeff & Dan,
I will address both responses. First, Jeff, yes buying used equipment is a stop gap measure and I believe I pointed out that is not the best option for a couple of reasons. Converting an new radio such as a Multiplex radio, to me, is not a stop gap measure. Those radios can be readily imported, modified, and openly marketed. To me, that is a good, permanent solution.
Dan, as you point out there are maybe a few small time manufacturers that are producing 75 Mhz. It remains to be seen if these small operators can stay with the market. As fast as the manufacturing rats are jumping the 75 Mhz ship, I would not hold my breath. Maybe I am way off base here(and I do hope I am), but I predict that within the next few years there will be zero manufacturers of 75 Mhz radio systems in the market. As I pointed out in my response, and this is just my personal preferences, I like to stick with the familiar products that have been good to me. I have been bitten a couple of times by doing something different. I am not discouraging anyone from buying one of these systems. Any other interpretation of my statements is grossly misguided. If you want to buy one, knock yourself out. Its a free market and its your money.
Dan-you also pointed out that:
27MHz, as has been pointed out, is a bit of a mess.
50MHz is a HAM band and while it works just fine, equipment is harder to find than that for 75MHz.
75MHz is the most common one used today for subs in the USA/Canada.
I agree completely with what you have written about the available freqencies.
Jeff-I am not suggesting that the fact that we operate on 75 Mhz is the problem, I am suggesting what you, later, pointed out that there is a lack of solid, well known company(s) that will stand behind the product from a warranty and break/fix perspective. To the contrary, I think Dan is correct with his point, and you and I have discussed this many times before; the best option may be purchasing 35/40MHz gear from Europe and have it legally modified for use on 75MHz here in the States. The European equipment has been around for decades and is manufactured by well known, long established companies with a good track record for customer service and parts replacement. The modifications are, from my limited knowledge, quite simple. I think this may be the best option for long term viability of the hobby with good, solid equipment.
If the smaller manufacturers can survive and fill the niche while proving that they are worthy of patronage due to producing quality products with outstanding service, then that is the most desirable option. The more product that is available from different manufacturers, the better quality they will be.
Jeff-What are the two units available for conversion from Multiplex? I know both you and Dave Welch have a unit. I played with Dave's last year at the Regatta. It is a VERY high end product and fit my hands very well. I loved the sticks on them. They were extremely smooth. I think that we need to seriously investigate this route and see what is possible.
Dan-I really don't want to go the 2.4 ghz route with airplanes. I have a few of those. I don't enjoy them as much as subs. The last option is completely out. I can't knit worth a darn!