Category Archives: Projects

Projects

WARG Practical and Information sessions – Meetings

WARG is changing the way meetings are run to include more informational/practical sessions. We’re considering bi-monthly General Meetings, where the alternate month will involve informational/practical sessions. We’re also looking at the restructure of formal General Meetings to ‘compress’ the formalities to enable simular informative sessions to follow.

Please let us know any topics you’d like to learn about related to Repeaters/AR.

Some Ideas we have so far…

Meeting:

Radio measurements – Bring along your mobile/HT radios and we’ll test things like audio levels, deviation, power output, frequency shift etc.
Learn how/why different stations sound different via the repeaters

Meeting:

Roleystone site visit – Come along and see what a repeater site looks like.
Learn about all of the devices required for a repeater, how they connect, and what they look like.

Meeting:

WARG network and features – Learn what repeaters are out there and what features they have availabale to users.
APRS network – Learn what APRS digipeaters/gateways are out there and what features they have availabale to users.

Meeting:

sweep/tune a complete set of new cavities for Tic Hill
sweep/tune/test other cavities in container
test/refurbish spare antennas in container

Meeting:

Repeater theory – Learn how a repeater works, what parts there are, what functions are available
building up spare repeaters

Meeting:

Program up APRS digipeaters x3
Manufacture/mount APRS enclosures x3
presentation on APRS graphs/monitoring

Meeting:

Brainstorming/presenting smart controller features for smart linking
old network design
current network design
future network design
System Expansion planning
System refurbishment planning

Meeting:

Build new DC distribution boards x3
testing of old Walliston Batteries

Victoria Park 70cm Repeater

The Vic Park 70cm repeater VK6RVP was returned to the Vic Park area in 2011. The repeater is currently only running on a Discone antenna so the repeater range is quite limited. When time/equipment permits, The repeater will have a dual band co-linear(previously used for this repeater) installed which should help improve it’s coverage. The new location is less ideal than its location over the past few years, and with a lower mast, though it’s expected that it will still be sufficeient to give coverage to the CBD as was it’s original purpose.

Thanks to William VK6KWT, VK6TWO and VK6FMON for the installation.

Roleystone Working Bee – 18th Feb 2012

Another productive ~5hr working bee at Roleystone on Feb 18th. Tasks carried out were:

New Cavities swept, tuned and tested on 146.700
Old Cavities swept and tuned (then returned to service – new ones will now go to Tic Hill)
Foliage under Guy Wires removed
Foliage around Shacks removed
Foliage around HF Beacon Antenna removed
Foliage along driveway removed
Mute levels adjusted
re terminated 23cm coax connector
took measurements in preparation for cable tray between mast and shack.
Took several photos
Consumed Coffee
Consumed Muffins
Consumed Smartie Choc Chip Cookies
Suffered many prickles/thorns/splinters from bushes.

Thanks to those who gave signal reports at the time. We’d appreciate if everyone could give an indication of access coverage since the changes.

Sweep plots were captured and will either get published on the WARG website or emailed out on this list. (please contact me if you would like me to send you a copy directly)

We will require another working bee at some stage in the near future to:

Install cable tray
recover coax/ethernet cables from Mast
Possibly swap main antenna (pending changes to coverage reports)
Commission 3rd run of LDF5-50 (already installed)
remove foliage around perimeter/fire break
Level checks on audio interfaces (repeaters and news link)
Sweep DSTAR 2m Cavities
General tidy up of cable routing within shack
Possibly recommission VK6BBR
Document cables/connectors/interfaces for all equipment (for site database)

Many Thanks to VK6TWO, VK6FMON, Bruno, VK6AIF, VK6ZRW, VK6DB, VK6AXB, VK6LV, VK6JAH, VK6ZMS

Roleystone – Q1 2012 Working Bee

The Roleystone Repeater site requires another Working Bee to do a bit of a tidy up and make some improvements to the installation.

With the installation of 3 new LDF5-50 up the 80m mast, the old rigid line needs to be removed and sold/disposed of.

Cable tray is required to tidy up the coax runs between the Radio Shack and the Tower. Ray VK6ZRW is looking into a source for materials.

After a prolonged ‘Mains Failure” around August 2011, two spare 80W Solar Panels were placed flat on the roof and connected to the main batteries by Heath VK6TWO. These will have to be mounted in a more robust and efficient way. Some redesign of the DC power/Batteries would also be worthwhile.

Warradarge – New site for coverage to Geraldton

In November, Martin VK6ZMS, Heath VK6TWO and Monique VK6FMON traveled to a potential new site in Warradarge to assess the suitability for extending 2m Voice and APRS coverage up to Geraldton.

Warradarge is aproximately 260km north of Perth along the Brand Highway, and about 180km NLOS SSE of Geraldton.

A 10m mast was raised to enable some propagation/coverage testing from the 290m HASL Warradarge Hill.

The VK6RPT  2m APRS Digipeater was installed, along with 4.5dB antenna, deep cycle battery and 80W solar.

APRS packets from Warradarge have been received by VK6RCT, VK6RTH, VK6REX and VK6RAV.

Performance from the site has been much less than expected so a higher gain antenna will replace the current one to better assess the site for suitability.

Great thanks goes to Craig VK6FLAM who did a lot of the prep-work for this trip, but unfortunately had a last minute emergency which stopped him from attending.

It’s expected that 2012 should see permanent APRS and 2m Voice in this area, enabling coverage from Geraldton through to Cateby.

WARG Shop – LDF4-50 and LDF5-50 DIN connectors for sale – CHEAP

We currently have a very large supply of NEW DIN connectors suitable for LDF4-50 and LDF5-50 Coax.

We are looking for a Commercial / Bulk purchaser who may be interested in purchasing these connectors.

DIN connectors are used for high power coax connections in many commercial installations such as Telstra/Optus/Vodaphone base station sites, FM and TV broadcast sites etc.

All connectors are NEW, sealed in individual plastic bags, with instructions and individual boxes.

We also have many NEW mast/tower feedline securing brackets to suit LDF4-50, LDF5-50, LDF6-50, LDF7-50.

Lengths of LDF4-50 may also be available for purchase.

If you know of a company or individual who may be interested in purchasing some or all of these connectors, please get in contact with us for a list of model numbers and quantities.

Thanks to Bob VK6KW and Heath VK6TWO for the aquisition.

Fundraising – WARG Chocolate Drive

WARG are continuing to run the fundraiser chocolate drive in 2012 to help fund many of the ongoing WARG projects.

If you think that you can sell some chocolates to raise some funds for WARG, or would like to purchase them for yourself, please contact the Treasurer – Monique VK6FMON.

Thanks to Monique VK6FMON.

Cataby VK6RCT Working Bee – APRS

December 2011 saw a working bee at the Cataby repeater site.

Party consisted of Craig VK6FLAM, Graham VK6LV, Heath VK6TWO and Monique VK6FMON.

Activities consisted of:

APRS installation – Antenna/Coax/TNC/25W Radio/Lightning protection

2m Voice – Cavity Sweep/tune, Lightning protection, 5w handheld into antenna to reach VK6RAP.

Batteries – voltage/charge monitoring

Mast – Inspection

The Batteries were identified as requiring replacement. APRS voltage beacons indicate that overnight the voltage is reaching as low as 12v, then rising during sunlight hours.

Foliage in the area has increased significantly since the last visit so some fire prevention maintenance may be required.

VK6RAV – Hoddy’s Well (Avon Valley) – 2m + APRS

Hoddy’s Well, ~100km East of Perth now has APRS and 2m FM Voice repeaters.

Coverage ranges from Perth to the East right through to Kellerberrin.

Voice Repeater consists of the old VK6RAV from Northam.

APRS equipment consists of an Argent Data OT2 Digipeater coupled to a 25W radio.

The VK6RAV 2m Voice repeater can be accessed on 147.275+

APRS on 145.175

Both services were fully operational as of Aug 2011

Many thanks to Jim VK6CA, Craig VK6FLAM, Rob VK6UFO, Heath VK6TWO, Martin VK6ZMS, Monique VK6FMON.