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Quantar build


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#1 Guest_Aron_*

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Posted 16 June 2019 - 08:46 PM

Firstly, yes I am unlicensed..as of this post, just so we're all clear. I've been putting in the hours of research required to set up my family a GMRS repeater system, complete with mobiles (Kenwood TK-8180H-K) and HTs. I have every intention of acquiring a license, especially for the amount of users (12-16) and the coverage area (200-600 acres).  I am aware of the 47CFR95.179 coverage, and we are in compliance (also, this isn't a business, its just family use). The hesitation on a license is a result of research, practicality, product availability (looking at old Part95 commercial equipment) and reliability. I feel like this is necessary to mention first, just to clarify the situation.

On to the inquires and rambling...  I've recently happened an opportunity of obtain a Motorola Quantar.  My previous endeavors of GMRS repeaters resulted in several thousand dollar modern repeater (not too happy to spend money on). Or linking two radios together with Arduino repeater boards (a pair of Kenwood TK-890H). So finding a potentially cheaper and industrial option looked very appealing (thus how I found this forum/site actually). Bottom line, I'm liking what I see about the Quantars...but I may not know entirely what I'm getting into.

As far as I know, I am looking for a gold plated chassis, range 2 TX exciter (TLN3253) range 2 TX amp (TLN3445), range 2 RX (TLN3314). I'd like the potential of 100 watts for emergencies, but sadly I can only get 25 watt amps for these rigs and remaining Part95 compliant. (unless these rigs can operate on a  multi power function, i.e. I use a 100 watt amp on 'low' power).

I've read several people that use the Q's on GMRS, so I know it can be done...I just don't fully understand (yet) what all goes into making one.

Do I still need a repeater controller with this? I've seen 'yes' and 'no' regarding a controller.
I'd really like basic DTMF control.

I'd prefer remote PC programming/monitoring, if possible.

Thanks for your time,

Aron
 



#2 berkinet

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Posted 17 June 2019 - 05:28 AM

Go directly to http://www.repeater-...l#main-indexall will be revealed.
And, BTW, welcome to the guest forum, now go get your license.

Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.

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#3 WRAK968

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Posted 17 June 2019 - 08:57 AM

A reasonable option could be the GR1225/RKR1225, both are different versions of the same repeater. They require little work to set up, and usually operate at 45 watts. (Maximum allowed for GMRS) The nice part is that you can usually get them with a duplexer and programing/tuning for less than $500 and in a small package that wont take up a server rack of space.



#4 berkinet

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Posted 17 June 2019 - 09:26 AM

A reasonable option could be the GR1225/RKR1225...

The 1225s are indeed solid serviceable repeaters with built-in controllers. However, they have a seriously bad habit of blowing the final PA amplifier. They work best when run at half their rated power on a 50% duty cycle.

 

However, before you buy a 1225, I would strongly suggest looking at a MTR2000. This is a solid piece of equipment, also with a built-in controller. It has no bells and whistles, just 100% duty cycle ability at the rated power.  On a good day you can get a MTR2000 for near the same price as a 1225. Unlike the 1225s, the MTR2000 can be rack mounted. OTOH, it does not come in a neat little metal box like the 1225s. Also note, you will probably have to buy a duplexer. But, a basic mobile unit, like the one included in the 1225s, won't set you back very much.


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Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.

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#5 WRAK968

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Posted 17 June 2019 - 03:22 PM

The 1225s are indeed solid serviceable repeaters with built-in controllers. However, they have a seriously bad habit of blowing the final PA amplifier. They work best when run at half their rated power on a 50% duty cycle.

 

However, before you buy a 1225, I would strongly suggest looking at a MTR2000. This is a solid piece of equipment, also with a built-in controller. It has no bells and whistles, just 100% duty cycle ability at the rated power.  On a good day you can get a MTR2000 for near the same price as a 1225. Unlike the 1225s, the MTR2000 can be rack mounted. OTOH, it does not come in a neat little metal box like the 1225s. Also note, you will probably have to buy a duplexer. But, a basic mobile unit, like the one included in the 1225s, won't set you back very much.

(the 1225 is also rack mountable :P )

I run mine at 35W output and run a cooling fan across the heatsink. The nice thing about the unit is the instant battery revert when the power goes out, and the easy of linking to other systems (I just ordered the RIMS that plug into the back)

The major downside to the system is programming though :( the 1225 requires an XP system or older, and I cant justify spending $100+ just to program the repeater.

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#6 berkinet

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Posted 17 June 2019 - 03:39 PM

(the 1225 is also rack mountable... ...The nice thing about the unit is the instant battery revert when the power goes out...
...The major downside to the system is programming though :( the 1225 requires an XP system or older, and I cant justify spending $100+ just to program the repeater.

I thought the battery revert kit was an optional extra. But of course since this radio is only available second hand, some units might include them. We had a GR1225 and it was not rack mountable, maybe that is what differentiates your RKR.

As to XP, that is easy to solve... just run a VM. The 1225 RSS runs just fine in a VirtualBox XP VM. We use an RPi at the site and share the USB port over the net to a VM running XP. The same setup that worked on the GR1225 now works on our mtr2000.

Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.

-- Marcus Aurelius


#7 WRAK968

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Posted 17 June 2019 - 03:55 PM

I thought the battery revert kit was an optional extra. But of course since this radio is only available second hand, some units might include them. We had a GR1225 and it was not rack mountable, maybe that is what differentiates your RKR.

As to XP, that is easy to solve... just run a VM. The 1225 RSS runs just fine in a VirtualBox XP VM. We use an RPi at the site and share the USB port over the net to a VM running XP. The same setup that worked on the GR1225 now works on our mtr2000.

Sounds good with the VM, I do have a drive with an XP shield installed however I still need to order the program cable. Good to know the XP shield will work. Thanks



#8 Guest_Aron_*

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Posted 17 June 2019 - 08:47 PM

I looked at the 1225s actually, and didnt like what I saw.  I haven't seen the RKR1225 before, that looks interesting.

I liked the Quantar for its style...industrial. Meaning its modular and robust. I had entertained the possibility of a GE Mastr III, but shied away from it due to programming (rather complex and not user friendly per se).

Main goals are, PC programmable (NOT with DOS equipment...windows 98 and beyond preferable, or linux), preferably remote PC access/monitoring/programming, and to bump that 50watt barrier if possible. yes the Q doesn't fit all those bills, but for its purpose, its more than adequate.

Furthering my seriousness, not that any of you need convincing....I've obtained a Rohn 25G 40ft tower. No HOA to bug me (property insurance maybe), and lots of room to mount/base it. I do plan on making it 100% off grid, solar & battery backup (50/50 on generator backup...its just family use, not emergency services after all :P ).



#9 Guest_Aron_*

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Posted 17 June 2019 - 11:03 PM

Looking into the RKR1225, its a nice Part95 repeater :) Always glad to see a 100% compliant rig. But sadly its 50% duty cycle at 100% output :( And its 30MHz separation in UHF. The Quantar is roughly 4MHz separation, and thats before duplexer tuning (yes I know the duplexer doesn't affect frequency spread, but it helps to have a  radio already built to crisply define frequency separation rather than making the duplexer filter everything out).

In other news, I really like ICS controllers. ICS and Open Repeater are an awesome combo.



#10 Corey

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Posted 19 June 2019 - 09:59 AM

Looking into the RKR1225, its a nice Part95 repeater :) Always glad to see a 100% compliant rig. But sadly its 50% duty cycle at 100% output :( And its 30MHz separation in UHF. The Quantar is roughly 4MHz separation, and thats before duplexer tuning (yes I know the duplexer doesn't affect frequency spread, but it helps to have a  radio already built to crisply define frequency separation rather than making the duplexer filter everything out).

In other news, I really like ICS controllers. ICS and Open Repeater are an awesome combo.

 

I build repeaters, tune duplexes, transmit combiners and I have no idea what you are trying to say here.... What?


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Just My $.02

 

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#11 okinater

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Posted 19 June 2019 - 10:18 AM

Maybe referring to the pre selector having a 4 MHz pass? I dunno, a bit confusing to me too. I have 20+ Quantars in service and they are work horses.



#12 Corey

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Posted 19 June 2019 - 11:07 AM

Maybe referring to the pre selector having a 4 MHz pass? I dunno, a bit confusing to me too. I have 20+ Quantars in service and they are work horses.

 

I agree, great repeaters but still pricey. I have been building GMRS repeaters out of MTR 2000's, they are bullet proof.  I was not sure what he was trying to say with separation of 30 MHz vs 4MHz, GMRS uses 5MHz separation and a filter or pre selector would have 4Mhz of bandwidth. Sounds like he was trying to talk technical without knowing what he was trying to say. For his intended use a Quantar is way over kill....


Just My $.02

 

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#13 marcspaz

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Posted 19 June 2019 - 11:58 AM

Sounds like he was trying to talk technical without knowing what he was trying to say.


Sounds like a kid I once heard say he put 7.5" pistons in his 6 cylinder Mustang engine to get higher compression for his supercharger... and now it runs 9 seconds in the quarter. I never laughed so hard in my life.
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#14 Guest_Aron_*

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Posted 19 June 2019 - 06:52 PM

The RKR 1225 states it has 28MHz frequency separation, the Quantar states 4MHz (3 in some cases I've read). I figured this referred to the radios ability 'separate' definitively between two sets of frequencies, without added aid (such as a duplexer or other filters). In the case of the Mastr III, their units have built in tune-able helix filters for very fine frequency separation.

And please, no mustang references, eeww lol. ESPECIALLY a V6. Inline 6 and diesel only please :)

The MTR2000 was the primary choice until I came across a supplier with a hand full of Quantars for sale.



#15 PastorGary

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Posted 19 June 2019 - 07:45 PM

Staff Note - Guest posts must be manually approved before they show up in a guest thread and time delays are always possible in approving guest posts.

Therefore, we are now recommending that the guest 'Aron' become licensed and join the forum as a registered member to better exchange information.


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