Monday, November 14, 2016

Ham shack shelving

Been working on getting my ham shack in order and to make room for more gear, still have led lighting to install and some central grounding but at least the carpentry is done for now...

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Little HF Playing last night

Checked in to the OMISS 40M & 80M SSB nets last night didn't have much luck with the 40m as band conditions were horrible for me, & too much noise. I did have much more success on the 80 meter SSB band and worked 8 states easily in a matter of no time...

Also using the Netlogger program makes logging QSO's and following the net very easy. and also allows quick and easy uploading to Eqsl and LOTW.

Worked or been worked by: N2KED, KB8VRK , W4DFR, N2TRJ, W5HEH, WB0YBZ, and couple others, will update my call list when I look at my logs again.

As of last night I made my 2 worked stations quota for membership and now an now a member of OMISS.  My member number is: # 10875


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Friday, October 7, 2016

Good day testing

Well today was a good day and after a week of playing around with settings adjustments etc I had two good QSO's one on DMR and one on YSF, so far i had no reports of dropouts in audio and reception was good too... I still have a little bit of tweaking on the receive side as I occasionally will get a small drop in audio or digital garble. I was able to confirm that today on the System Fusion side while listening to a reflector off of the internet where the internet didn't drop and my radio had a couple blips. Not sure but may also be my Kenwood radio and hope to get one in from a different manufacturer soon and go back to the test bench.

more pics and details to follow soon on what I did and how I got it all working.


Thursday, October 6, 2016

DMR in action

Here are a couple pics of the MMDVM working in DMR mode and showing reception on a TYT MD-380 Radio..

PCB soldering and testing MMDVM

Well got couple boards assembled and started testing digital modes on the MMDVM hardware and software. the SP8nth board works nicely and i made some modifications to suit my use better, (change of some resistor values etc...).

So far its working decent, once I was able to get the audio levels calibrated. DMR has been working great talking on the national Talkgroup TG3100 on the Brandmeister network.  I am using a Kenwood TK-860H that I modified for ham band use and made the custom accessory cable to access the data audio input and discriminator audio out. 

on the Yaesu Fusion side its been working pretty good as well... been connecting to the Alabama Link reflector and been able to monitor QSO's easily, and tested some transmissions and so far no dropouts of audio.

The level on the output of the MMDVM is at mic level and the Kenwood DI (data input) likes to have line level audio so i had to add an outboard audio amplifier to boost the modulated data to get the right level and deviation to support digital modes. so far I only tested it with the Kenwood radios as that's all I have, and looking to get a couple Motorola GM300 or the 1250 radios used cheaply as many others have had great luck with MMDVM...

more updates soon...
73's WV8TIM

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Boards arrived

Well it looks like the boards have arrived from OSHpark... Now the real fun part, soldering all the components on one and test it out...

Wednesday, September 21, 2016


Got my email from OSHpark that my SP8NTH 6.0 boards have been shipped and my components from Digikey are on the way. I hope to have them Friday and the fun part of  assembling them. all SMD components so will take a little time doing by hand.

If all goes well I should have a working repeater in the following week and start testing the software and reflectors. I also got the build successfully running on the Odroid C2 hardware and noticed major difference in performance compared to the Raspberry Pi 3 although I loose on board WiFi on the C2 I can always us a usb wifi stick if needed... The nice feature on the C2 is the gigabit Ethernet interface, also with the large heat sink and more on board ram would make it a nice candidate for using one as a dedicated YSF-Reflector.. Well theres more time to play with that later on....

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Just released from over at the MMDVM camp!!! These look sexy as f... Cannot wait to get my hands on one.

Friday, September 16, 2016

These new digital modes......

I am very excited about the MMDVM and hope to get the boards soon to actually put this into a full test. I already have a ID-880h in my vehicle that I use for D-star and analog access to all the local repeaters in the area and my Allstar Link nodes.

Currently I am the only one in the area that uses D-Star and with my hot spot located actually on a tower on a mountain top I have great coverage with it.. usually I am on Reflector 1 Charlie (REF001c) and sometimes on REF030c.  D-Star never took off well in my area which is a shame as I really enjoy using D-Star.  I do enjoy using hf to talk with people around the world but sometimes propagation isn't in the best condition to support it, the use of the internet and digital modes just adds another layer of just what amateur operators can do, and the tech savvy part of me loves it.

There are also many Fusion repeaters in the area, thanks to Yaesu's nifty price offering for clubs to buy the new digital repeaters (as far as im concerned it was a very successful sales gimmick to sell radios and boost C4FM usage).   Both local clubs that I am members are now fusion capable and more going up in the area. So far none have the wiresX feature added, so there is no connect ability to other systems.   

Well with, this new modem and software it will be nice to play with my Yaesu FT1D handheld on some reflectors and just see what this puppy can do. 

Thankfully a fellow ham has a couple DMR radios that he is going to loan to me to do some DMR testing as well, When i built the D-star repeater last year he asked me if there was a solution for DMR yet as there was interest in that mode in the southern part of the state. Hopefully with MMDVM and some old radios we be able to set up some multi mode repeaters in the area that can an be multilingual  with D-star / DMR / C4FM / and now P25 that's in the works in the software...

Thursday, September 15, 2016


Well hello and welcome to my little spot on the web,  This will be sort of a personal page / blog about my journeys into amateur radio.   I have been around amateur radio ever since I was a kid with boy scouts and some family into electronics rf and anything technical I was always amazed by it all...I never got fully into ham radio till about 2014 and getting my Technicians licence and since then its been full speed....

Now as an Amateur Extra licence holder I have privileges to many more RF bands and being an Engineer by career  I have been heavily involved in building and designing many things.

The greatest thing about amateur radio is you are encouraged to experiment, try new things, build radios, amplifiers, antennas etc.. Most of the things that exist today are because of the experimenters and thinkers.

Im glad to be involved in it and look forward to meeting tons of like minded people who all share the same thing. be sure to check once in a while there will be much more to post....

Take care