Thursday, August 14, 2014

AllStar Node 41153 - 927.2375 - a B.Y.R.G Portable Repeater

The KØXM Portable Allstar Network repeater is complete!

Chuck - KØXM & I put the finnishing touches to it this evening.

The controller is a DMK Engineering URI and a Beagle Bone Black 
( in the orange case of course....) :) with a load of Arch Linux and Asterisk APP_RPT software.

I hope Chuck get a lots of use while in San Diego. It will let him pass some of his down time with us back here in KC while being on the road.  

The repeater was built in true Back Yard Style - mostly outside and with lots of recyled parts and pieces. While not very pretty it is a fully functional full duplex low power repeater. 
( 4 watts TPO)  

Parts Used: 
2 - Kenwood TK-941 - Recycled 900 Mhz                 mobile radios
1 - Beagle Bone Black with Allstar Software
1 - Orange BBB case
1 - DMK Universal Radio Interface
1 - Recycled Linksys SHSO router
1 - Recycled Sinclair 800-960 Mhz Duplexer
1 - Recycled 900 Mhz magnetic mobile antenna

1 - SM-25 recycled Duracomm power supply
1 - DB-5 recycled Duracomm DC power distribution block
1 - Pelican case of unknown origin, was given to us at  the Warrensburg hamfest this year.
All the mounting hardware was out of the well stocked junque box at home and at work.

All For Now 
Comments Invited - 73

SmØke out.....

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

August 2014 - Some New 900 Mhz Fun and Games!

Sorry for not posting in awhile. 

I been rather busy this summer with all kinds of projects and such.

Chuck - KØXM & I have been doing lots of things at some of our repeater sites here in the metro.

We have finally got network installed at the Foxridge site so we can hook the 927.5875 quantar and the UHF 442.100 repeater to our asterisk network.

Anyhow found out a few days ago Chuck, KØXM will be making a trip to 6 land later this month so he needs a portable repeater to keep in touch back home here in Ø land while he is there.

Hence this post..... here is the start of the project.

The pictures are in no particular order at this time will format them later today and write a description as we move along. 

The controller will be a DMK Engineering URI and a Beagle Bone Black ( in and orange case of course....) :) with a load of Arch Linux and Asterisk APP_RPT software.

Here at work we recycle almost everything, including blemished rack panels, they make great radio mounts for pelican cases ! :) 

Friday, April 11, 2014

More 900 Mhz Fun!

Well today is an unplanned day off from the normal working day. 

We are having some heavy, dirty, & very noisy work done here at the "The Facility".

So since I am Baby sitting the construction crews I thought I would "dust" off one of my staled 900 MHz repeater projects I had been working on in my spare time.

It is made into a scrap RLP chassis that got damaged in shipping and the front panel is also a scratch & dent special.

You see working here I have chassis options that some folks do not have.

The plus side is we have a metal brake and drill press and lots of hardware at my disposal.

I had the front panel cut for almost a year now, I got it drilled & painted this morning and I finally got the main chassis laid out & drilled today.

Glad I had lots of space here.. more holes.......... :)

So now I am dry fitting all the radio gear to see if there is any other holes and such that need to be added.

I added some more progress to the project, I had to re-drill the radio mounting since I did not allow for the front panel brackets, so everything had to move back 2 inches so it would fit.

I got to keep the duplexer holes, but I had top raise it off the bottom with some tall standoffs.

You all wonder what is inside??

  • 2 -TK-931 Trunked/Conventional Kenwood Radio.
  • 1 - Sinclair 800-900 low power duplexer.
  • 1 - DMK universal radio interface, to connect to the Allstar Network
  • 1 - Scratch & Dent RLP power supply chassis from the scrap bin
  • 1 - Scratch & Dent steel front panel of unknown model from the scrap bin.
  • Add some misc screws, fans and  such for the final hook up and connections.
Power out of this device will be about 8~10 watts, good enough to cover a 
small area or use as a low power standby repeater. 

All For Now 
Comments Invited - 73

SmØke out.....

Friday, October 4, 2013

442.1500 Repeater Antenna Service and Check Out

Here are some more Images from the 442.1500 Repeater Site.
Included are the pictures from the Facebook page and some others that were sent after the fact.


442.1500 Repeater Antenna Fixing Party.
With Kyle-KØKN, Barry-WØLHK, & Neil-KØGXL
At the St. Lukes South Medical Center, Overland Park, Ks
Wednesday 10/2/2013, we got the DB-420 straightened.
Neil-KØGXL, and Kyle-KØKN did the work and they did a terrific job !

All For Now 
Comments Invited

SmØke out.....

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Work & Fun At The Same Time!

Where else can one go to work and have fun at the same time?
At Duracomm of course!
Today I am working on a very large wall of LEDs that make up a 12 ft diagonal video wall.
Yes I said 12 feet!   

P6 Video Screen
I have been putting this together for a couple of weeks now. Why it take so long you might ask?
Well the system came to me with no assembly instructions and the manuals that did come were 
in another language and very little English.  So my task was to assemble this system and make 
an English assembly document so others can do it after I am done playing with it. 

Rear View of System
The hard part will be setting up the PC that will drive this unit as I believe it uses some kind 
of RS-485 signalling to send the picture information to the screens.
I love my job! :)

All For Now 
Comments Invited

SmØke out.....

Saturday, July 13, 2013

ON BEING LUCKY - A Story by TC Dailey - WØEAJ

I’m not as lucky as my Dad was, but I’m right up there.  My Dad could walk into a dance, or carnival, or the like... win the door prize, and/or walk out with the top prize, by the very act of “being there”.  Mom said it was uncanny, and almost embarrassing.

Trash Day
I’m not THAT lucky, but growing up in the 50’s and 60’s (ham radio’wise) was definitely one of the grandest times to have been a kid, interested in electronics and radio.  Municipal Trash Collection day, in Kansas City, was on a Thursday, so along with the “other” crazy kids I hung around with, all of us would leave for school early, so we could rummage through the “neat trash” that people had thrown away, and come home with old radios, and anything else that looked electronic, for absolutely NO money, and little effort.


One of THE best parts was getting the ALLIED RADIO, Burstein-Applebee, LAFAYETTE, Jamaica Radio, & HEATHKIT catalogs in the mail, and barring a drool-cup, salivating over the radios in the ham sections (that you KNEW you could never afford).

Ham radio gear back then, seemed to be in Wrinkle Paint – so very cool and “official” looking.  Black wrinkle, Grey wrinkle, & Green wrinkle were what told you that whatever it was, it MUST be cool... therefore good.  Of course, there was National’s gunmetal silver-grey, Hallicrafters’ matte black & silver, Hammarlund’s 2-tone grey, WRL’s weird grey-green trim, Johnson’s grey & maroon, and of course Harvey-Wells’ TBS-50 et. al. in grey wrinkle with red trim.  Gonset had the mobile twins in CHROME, and Multi-Elmac made the AF-67 & 68 “Transciter”with a chrome “ring” around the face, but radios had a personality – an “identity” if you will.  Simply put, they didn't all wear the same clothes.

Harvey-Wells’ TBS-50
Oh, and there was something, about gear back then... that incredible scent of Bakelite  warm resistors, wire insulation, capacitor wax, and the heady aroma of “burned dirt” atop tubes, all mixed together in a sort of ham’s “Eau d’ Cologne du Electronique” , that to this day, makes my head swim with memories when I smell it, wafting out of the top or back of yet another radio I've resurrected, or been privileged to turn on.

Multi-Elmac AF-68 “Transciter.
I just finished putting back together, a Multi-Elmac AF-68 “Transciter.  It’s a 60 watt AM & CW transmitter that was primarily intended for mobile use.  Many hams have used them (and still use them) for an AM exciter – thus the name Transciter (transmitter & exciter) at the home station, and they are a direct comparison for the famous Johnson Ranger, which has similar power and features.  Some users of the AF-67 & 68, insist that the Multi-Elmac has better audio, but it’s up to the owner.

As a kid, I saw one in a car, parked in front of the main store of the old Burstein-Applebee (for whom I worked, later on) in Kansas City.  It was SOOoooo pretty, and just looked like the ne’ plus ultra of mobile rigs (which it was) of the time.  Not long after the AF-68 was brought out (featuring the 6m band, and leaving off the 160m band), our hobby swung toward SSB, and the concept of the “Transceiver”, putting everything into ONE box.  

The companies that didn't catch on, didn't last – heck, even some that did (National, Hallicrafters, SBE, SWAN, Eldico, Heathkit & Cosmophone, among others) didn't hold onto the market, either.  

It’s been said that the Yaesu FT-101 caused the “death of Heathkit”, and I believe they’re right.. but even those “hybrid” rigs like the Yaesu’s, Kenwoods, & Drakes have good smells and memories – Sorry, but my ICOM 756 PROII works swell, but it just doesn't have that PERFUME.

dit dit. 

TC Dailey - WØEAJ