The PRC-25 Field Radio

The most commonly used communications device in Vietnam was the PRC-25 radio. It had a range with the flexible antenna of about 3-4 miles in the flat land of the delta. With different antennas that could be extended to about 20 miles, maybe even more on a good day. All the controls were mounted to the top and the battery was contained in a compartment on the bottom. There were two places to attach handsets and two knobs to set the frequency and a knob each for volume and squelch. The antenna attached to the top too. There were handles at each side.

It was water proof but the handset wasn't. It had to be held up when crossing waterways or arm pit deep mud. Normally it would hang on a ring high on the shoulder strap. With the volume turned up the sound would carry far enough for someone a few feet away to hear. The coiled cord was long enough so that a man walking behind you could use it.

It was an FM signal that overlapped with some of the civilian radio and TV channels. We would on occasion find some civilians with a radio tuned into our frequency. They would be "detained" for that.