Jump to content

Site buildout on the Monster.


WRKC935
 Share

Recommended Posts

Some have read the other post that I sort of hijacked with my crazy GMRS plans.

Guessing some have questioned the validity, my ability, and said " cool story bro".

 

Here is what we started with in the winter of 17.

https://flic.kr/p/2hLHs8V

 To say it was a mess is an understatement.  The previous owner had contracted crack heads to do the tear out.  They took anything metal.  They even took a door.  Not to mention every bit of conduit.  I had been in the site 6 months prior and everything that AT&T had there was still in the building.  It took 3 very large roll off dumpsters to get it all out of there.

 

So I went to work rewiring, reworking and rehabbing the building. 

At this point, we have a large AREDN (Amateur Radio Emergency Data Network) with access nodes on all four corners of the tower covering 900 2.4 and 5.8

There is a large ham packet switch network hub in place covering all bands including HF.

And of course a GMRS repeater (soon to be more).

Not to mention the ongoing projects.

A Centracom Gold Elite console system.

Several ham repeaters, DMR and analog.

I semi serious HF station... More antenna's to be installed in the spring. 

 

Couple shots of the interior

https://flic.kr/p/2khe2Ti

 

https://flic.kr/p/2kjeWTE

 

Now there was some discussion about my plans to put up 4 GMRS repeaters and how that was going to happen.

 

Here is the 8 port combiner

 

https://flic.kr/p/2kjeofT

 

https://flic.kr/p/2kjaCPs

 

Some of the repeaters

 

https://flic.kr/p/2kjeWGT

 

https://flic.kr/p/2kjeo64

The MTR on top is the current GMRS repeater we have on line.

The XPR's in other photos are going to be used as well for this endeavor.

 

 

Here is the Centracom CEB stack.  This is a work in progress that will be interfacing to the control stations in the second photo and the repeaters as I get that fully programmed and running.

https://flic.kr/p/2kjaCA1

 

https://flic.kr/p/2kjeo88

 

Up till now, it's all just in a block building. 

So here is the tower next to the block building

 

https://flic.kr/p/2hLJtx7

 

And a couple photos of the firefighters training on the tower.

We donate access for high angle and rope rescue to all fire departments in the  area.

 

https://flic.kr/p/2khdz69

 

https://www.flickr.com/gp/36646490@N05/hzD6f1

 

 

So that's what I am working with.

It's been time consuming, but fun.  And the best part is, since it's all private, I can do as much or as little as I feel like on any given day.

 

Specifics on the tower.

Height 239 feet to the lightning rod tip.

43 feet from leg to leg.

Two decks on top, one is octagon.  The lower is square.

THe lower deck is 40 by 40 with 4 horns

Upper deck we haven't  measured, but it's smaller, has 2 horns.

 

Since I always get ask about the horns.

They are 12 foot wide and 15 feet tall at the apex of the top.

Electrically they are a section of a 24 foot dish. 

Beam width is 1.5 degrees and the mathematical gain is just under 40 DB for 11 Ghz and 30 something for 6 Ghz.

 

 

 

Feel free to ask questions.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Our SAR team used one of those ATT long wire sites for years the town had. They had gotten it due to back taxes. American tower didnt pay taxes and the town took it. We were there for around 10 years. Site sold for 25K at tax auction finally. The biggest issue with those sites in the NE is the rust and noise it creates. I looked to purchase it but the insurance alone was unreasonable for a private owned site. If there waas people renting it may of paid off but in 20 years no one wanted to go on it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Site is owned by the other guy involved with this. So it is privately held. The previous owner was in process of razing the site when it was purchased. They had not scheduled the explosives team to drop the tower and sold it to my buddy for the value of the land under it. His goal is to be strictly ham radio. There have been inquiries about space for rent by WISPs and a commercial broadcaster that wanted to put police scanners there for their news team. He was and still is adamant the site is not to be a business venture. If the site had been commercially viable he would not have been able to buy it anyway.

 

As far as repairs. The building was a mess. Ther was nothing there in way of electric. The first order of business was to get a temp service set and get the tower light working. Then it was money hand over fist to rebuild. I would say with the generators, electrical, securing the site, camera system, and other expenses he spend 12K in addition to the purchase price. Thats not counting the taxes, insurance or electric bill.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Site is owned by the other guy involved with this. So it is privately held. The previous owner was in process of razing the site when it was purchased. They had not scheduled the explosives team to drop the tower and sold it to my buddy for the value of the land under it. His goal is to be strictly ham radio. There have been inquiries about space for rent by WISPs and a commercial broadcaster that wanted to put police scanners there for their news team. He was and still is adamant the site is not to be a business venture. If the site had been commercially viable he would not have been able to buy it anyway.

 

As far as repairs. The building was a mess. Ther was nothing there in way of electric. The first order of business was to get a temp service set and get the tower light working. Then it was money hand over fist to rebuild. I would say with the generators, electrical, securing the site, camera system, and other expenses he spend 12K in addition to the purchase price. Thats not counting the taxes, insurance or electric bill.

It is wonderful what some folks are capable to finding and doing. I love the fact the the owner is generously giving to the amateur radio community of his time and resources.

 

Michael

WRHS965

KE8PLM

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We are trying.  But it IS a work in progress.

 

On a side note.  Can pictured be posted via links here?  I have tried to post images here that are on Flickr here and had no luck. 

If there is some secret to this would someone let me know what that is please.

Plan is to archive the project here and being about to directly post pictures and not just links I believe would be beneficial.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with attaching vs links. I hate imagine links in posts. Requires an extra step to view, and links always get broken so the thread gets hosed for future readers.

 

Personally I do all my forum work using my iPad and the TapaTalk app. To insert a picture I merely hit the image button, a browser opens where I then navigate to the image, accept and voila.

 

I hope someone that does that successfully with a standard browser will chime in for you.

 

Michael

WRHS965

KE8PLM.

 

 

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 6 months later...

OK,,, progress update.

Have two repeaters on the air now.  725 and 675.  the 675 has traveler PL in it. 

Need to get 675 on the console and both on the logging recorder.  But that's not a big deal.

When we added the second repeater and went to  the split antenna's the talk out suffered and we ended up installing a Station Master antenna on the TX combiner to make up for the loss.  This will most likely end up being a db420 before long though.  I am still not happy with it as it don't talk out like it did with the 408 on the top of the tower.

 

Combiner is tuned for 735, 675 625 and 575.  If these two get busy I will add another repeater.  But I doubt that is gonna happen.  Number of users on 725 never really took off like I thought it might so we will see how things go. 

Site is now going to have public safety radio equipment in it and will meet all requirements for that level of communications equipment.  Meaning battery / UPS with generator.  So the repeaters WILL have 100% expected up time short of equipment failure. 

 

Repeaters are listed on here.  As stated on the listings these are OPEN repeaters and if you hear us on feel free to say hello.  For short comms, 725 is fine... If you are going to rag chew, please use 675 and leave holes for others to join in.  Access IS FREE... donations of useful equipment and cash are always welcome but NOT required for access.  We are looking at installing solar and wind generation gear and hope to have the repeaters with GREEN power.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Update to this build out.

At this point.  I will not be building out 625 or 575.

I have encountered both analog and DMR repeaters??? on these frequencies in the coverage area that the system exists in.

The coverage footprint would be identical to the repeaters I have on the air at 725 and 675 and this would not be fair or reasonable for those system operators to attempt to compete with my coverage footprint. 

If those frequencies clear at a later date and no other repeater exists on those frequencies, or I am approached by those system owners wishing to plug their repeater into my combiner and share my antenna system.  I have zero interest in interfering with other open systems.  And I will work to maintain coverage for other GMRS users as long as there is a perceived need. 

 

At this point I am going to redirect my efforts at setting up the dispatch console and the resources for it.  And increasing the HF antenna performance from the site. 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...
On 9/15/2021 at 1:44 PM, jlwilkers said:

OK, it just wasn't me hearing DMR on GMRS.  This is highly illegal!

Nope,,, it's happening.  I would venture a guess that the guy that is running the GMRS pay to play business is the one doing it, but I don't know that for certain.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, WRKC935 said:

Nope,,, it's happening.  I would venture a guess that the guy that is running the GMRS pay to play business is the one doing it, but I don't know that for certain.

 

Is he running in the clear, or encrypted?  I was never able to pick up anything on it.  Just heard the prominent DMR signature... tried receiving with my Anytone DMR radio; but nada.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 minutes ago, jlwilkers said:

Is he running in the clear, or encrypted?  I was never able to pick up anything on it.  Just heard the prominent DMR signature... tried receiving with my Anytone DMR radio; but nada.

I haven't made any attempt to decode it with a scanner or service monitor and get the CC or Group Call ID numbers to see what it is for sure.

I would hope that it was clear.  But figuring that it's DMR on GMRS which as you pointed out is illegal, going the extra mile and encrypting it wouldn't be a surprise.

I can't remember if I am hearing it on 625 or 575 but I think it's 575.  I may throw my Whistler scanner in the van and see what I come up with at some point.

The other thing I would like to figure out is if it's a repeater or just a subscriber.  I would guess it's a repeater because I hear it from Columbus all the way to Mt Vernon.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, WRKC935 said:

I haven't made any attempt to decode it with a scanner or service monitor and get the CC or Group Call ID numbers to see what it is for sure.

I would hope that it was clear.  But figuring that it's DMR on GMRS which as you pointed out is illegal, going the extra mile and encrypting it wouldn't be a surprise.

I can't remember if I am hearing it on 625 or 575 but I think it's 575.  I may throw my Whistler scanner in the van and see what I come up with at some point.

The other thing I would like to figure out is if it's a repeater or just a subscriber.  I would guess it's a repeater because I hear it from Columbus all the way to Mt Vernon.

 

There is one up here too in the NE. Most users are 4 digit IDs, but two hams that are on the system use their ham ID and have never had a GMRS license in their life. I have a name, FRN, home address, recordings and everything and the FCC brushed it off.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, tweiss3 said:

There is one up here too in the NE. Most users are 4 digit IDs, but two hams that are on the system use their ham ID and have never had a GMRS license in their life. I have a name, FRN, home address, recordings and everything and the FCC brushed it off.

That's interesting that they don't seem to care. 

I ain't gonna lie.  If I could run DMR on GMRS, I certainly would.  Well actually I would prefer to run P25 on GMRS and AES encryption.  But the rules say no... so No.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, WRKC935 said:

I ain't gonna lie.  If I could run DMR on GMRS, I certainly would.  Well actually I would prefer to run P25 on GMRS and AES encryption.  But the rules say no... so No.

 

So if I take my Radioddity RD-5R DMR HT and program it to a GMRS repeater split, say 462.550/467.550, and I transmit to the repeater on 467.550; you are saying that another DMR radio receiving my transmission on the output of 462.550 will understand what I am saying?

Interesting!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 hours ago, WRKC935 said:

That's interesting that they don't seem to care. 

I ain't gonna lie.  If I could run DMR on GMRS, I certainly would.  Well actually I would prefer to run P25 on GMRS and AES encryption.  But the rules say no... so No.

 

The official response was pretty generic

Quote

Your complaint provides valuable information and is shared among FCC bureaus and offices to spot trends and practices that warrant investigation and enforcement action. If the FCC needs more information about your complaint, we will contact you directly.

Each year, the Enforcement Bureau takes hundreds of actions on behalf of consumers that result in tens of millions of dollars in penalties. These actions encourage companies and individuals to abide by the law and reduce future misconduct.

Thank you for your help in furthering the FCC’s mission on behalf of consumers.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 hours ago, MichaelLAX said:

So if I take my Radioddity RD-5R DMR HT and program it to a GMRS repeater split, say 462.550/467.550, and I transmit to the repeater on 467.550; you are saying that another DMR radio receiving my transmission on the output of 462.550 will understand what I am saying?

Interesting!

NO that is NOT what I am saying.  The only way that works is if there is a DMR repeater programmed for that frequency and color code you are on.  If the repeater is analog ONLY as the FCC rules require then they would NOT hear you transmitting on DMR.  Whats' more that is illegal to do, so I wouldn't advise it.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 minutes ago, WRKC935 said:

NO that is NOT what I am saying.  The only way that works is if there is a DMR repeater programmed for that frequency and color code you are on.  If the repeater is analog ONLY as the FCC rules require then they would NOT hear you transmitting on DMR.  Whats' more that is illegal to do, so I wouldn't advise it.

 

So what are you saying? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, MichaelLAX said:

So what are you saying? 

I think I was pretty clear here.  A DMR radio will not be able to TX into an analog repeater (required by FCC rules pertaining to GMRS).  The repeater would need to be a DMR repeater.  I am curious if you are trying to shine me on... or if you really don't understand radio systems any better than you are indicating?  If you don't know.. that's OK.  Having a GMRS license doesn't require any technical knowledge of radio, like ham radio does.  But I am not sure I can explain this enough if you don't understand the difference and why it wouldn't work.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it is clearer now.  After tweiss3 said:

Quote

There is one up here too in the NE. Most users are 4 digit IDs, but two hams that are on the system use their ham ID and have never had a GMRS license in their life. I have a name, FRN, home address, recordings and everything and the FCC brushed it off.

You then said:

Quote

I ain't gonna lie.  If I could run DMR on GMRS, I certainly would.  Well actually I would prefer to run P25 on GMRS and AES encryption.  But the rules say no... so No.

That lead me to believe that transmitting DMR through an existing GMRS repeater would work, even if not allowed by FCC rules. But upon reflection after your reply; of course that could not be the case.  I was misreading the anecdote.

It is now clearer to me that the example posted by tweiss3 must be an illegal DMR repeater set up in his area in the NE, and I agree that it is interesting that the FCC has not had the resources, yet, to shut it down.

I do think that a desire to use AES encryption is very troublesome; but then again, you said you "ain't gonna lie!" 😉

Urban Dictionary says that "to shine me on" is to ignore someone or continuously not follow through with an engagement.

I am not sure this is relevant to our exchange, but let me assure you that I was not attempting to shine you on! 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, MichaelLAX said:

That lead me to believe that transmitting DMR through an existing GMRS repeater would work, even if not allowed by FCC rules. But upon reflection after your reply; of course that could not be the case.  I was misreading the anecdote.

It is now clearer to me that the example posted by tweiss3 must be an illegal DMR repeater set up in his area in the NE, and I agree that it is interesting that the FCC has not had the resources, yet, to shut it down.

Yea, I'm about 100 miles NE of his tower. I was only noting I found another DMR repeater on GMRS, separate from the ones he has found.

 

This does bring up an interesting point. I did just see a post about an ID5100 that will pass P25 traffic through the cross-band repeat feature. Would any other normal repeater with CSQ pass DMR/NXDN or any other digital mode as well, if it just needs a carrier? There isn't anything significantly different than passing packet or any AFSK mode through a repeater.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/21/2021 at 8:21 PM, WRKC935 said:

Nope,,, it's happening.  I would venture a guess that the guy that is running the GMRS pay to play business is the one doing it, but I don't know that for certain.

 

What is the "GMRS pay to play business?"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Guidelines.