NEXT MEETING, Monday Night, October 3rd, 2016
LOCATION: To Be Announced
TIME: 5:30 p.m. Eat and Meet, 6:30 p.m. Meeting
PROGRAM: To Be Announced
CHECK BACK HERE OFTEN – Meeting info will be posted here as soon as it’s available.
AR Links System Welcomes a New Partner, WD5B
146.685- (141.3) in Dardanelle
The Central Arkansas UHF Group and the AR Links System would like to welcome Richard Duncan, WD5B as a new linking partner. Richard’s 146.685 (141.3) VHF repeater overlooks Lake Dardanelle and is linked 24/7 to the AR Links System through our main repeater 443.200 in Little Rock. This repeater gives us great coverage in the Russellville and Dardanelle area AND it’s on a backup generator! We have long wished for a repeater in this area. We are very fortunate to have Richard come forward and offer to link to us! Make sure this frequency is in your radio and give a shout anytime you travel I-40 through Russellville and Dardanelle With a good mobile, you should hear this repeater from Pottsville to Ozark and beyond.
Our New Baby!
We are so proud of our new baby! It’s a girl. (Well, we’re really not sure.)
We’re talking about our new UHF repeater on Shinall Mountain, installed October 24, 2015. It’s a Kenwood Commercial, model TKR-850K and it set us back a pretty penny–more like 118,500 pennies. That’s right, with tax, it cost us $1185.30 but it was a good buy, a wise investment and it’s an incredible machine. It is a self-contained, rack mounted unit and provides 100 watts out! In 2013, we replaced the antenna and feedline on KARK’s tower, so the new repeater completes the project and gives us an enviable system. It replaces our ancient, cobbled together, 443.200 machine that was hand crafted from two Motorola GM300’s (taxi radios) and held together with zip ties and duct tape. (Really!) Talk about an UPGRADE!
Let us pause to thank our chief engineer, Joel Echols, N5QLC and our club president, Randy Wright, AE5RW, for their many hours of tedious labor to build and install the incredible system you see in the photo. In the same rack, you can see our stand alone 146.775 VHF repeater, our 145.490 VHF input and also our link radios. The repeaters, link radios and remote base are controlled by one RLC Systems controller.
Now, all we have to do is pay for our new baby. We were fortunate to have enough cash on hand to pay for it up front, but our bank account took a big hit. We need to raise a little cash right now to replenish our bank account and be prepared for the next repeater, antenna or feedline disaster. “It’s always something” as the saying goes. Lightning is not our friend.
Our Stand-Alone UHF Machines in Metropolitan LR/NLR
The CAUHF Group has two of Central Arkansas’ best UHF repeaters. “Three Dot O” or 443.000 has just been moved to the Little Rock Midtown area, near Markham and University. The PL tone is 100.0. This heavy duty machine is built around a Motorola MSF-5000 commercial grade repeater. The coverage area extends out about 25 miles. With a 35-50W mobile, this repeater easily reaches Conway, Jacksonville, Lonoke and Benton. Also, this is your best bet for Handie-Talkie coverage in the downtown Little Rock and North Little Rock area and beyond.
“Eight Five” is the nickname for 444.850, and resides at the Arkansas School for the Blind (ASB). The PL tone is 114.8. ASB is located on a high peak about 1/2 mile west of the Capitol Complex. This is a small 20W machine with a coverage area that is basically just Little Rock and North Little Rock–maybe a five or six mile radius of the downtown area. Still, you can easily talk on this machine using a Handie Talkie anywhere in the downtown area, or using a mobile radio, you can hit it from a little farther out.
Please make sure you have these frequencies and PL tones programmed into your radios. And remember, these machines are NOT LINKED into the AR Links System–OR to each other.
Let’s All Get Together!
For quite some time, we have considered establishing standard simplex frequencies for use within the CAUHF Group (and for anyone else who wishes to play along with us). All of these frequencies fall within the ARRL Band Plan for VHF and UHF. Here’s what we’ve come up with thus far. We will not use PL tones on any simplex frequency (unless it becomes necessary in the future). During special events, disaster drills, etc., we can refer to these as “tactical channels”. These standard frequencies are taken from a similar plan developed by the New York City Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Service (ARECS). They use far more than 10 frequencies and they also use PL tones, but these 10 should be enough for us, at least for now. Please program all of these simplex frequencies into your mobile radios and HT’s. You never know when you might need them.
|VTAC Channel||VHF||UTAC Channel||UHF|
|VTAC-1 National Simplex||146.520 MHz||UTAC-1 National Simplex||446.000 MHz|
|VTAC-2||146.535 MHz||UTAC-2||446.025 MHz|
|VTAC-3||146.550 MHz||UTAC-3||446.050 MHz|
|VTAC-4||146.565 MHz||UTAC-4||446.075 MHz|
|VTAC-5||146.580 MHz||UTAC-5||446.100 MHz|
Some folks just pick any old frequency for simplex but that really is not wise. If you are not careful, you can accidentally pick a repeater frequency. Also, you must remember that VHF simplex frequencies need to be at least 15kHz apart and UHF simplex frequencies need to be at least 25kHz apart (as shown above) to avoid interfering with each other. From the ARECS plan, we used the VHF National Calling Frequency as the baseline at 146.520, then for each succeeding “channel”, we went up 15kHz. We also used the UHF National Calling Frequency as the baseline at 446.000, then for each succeeding “channel”, we went up 25kHz. At this point, this is merely a proposed plan–just a suggestion. Let’s hear your thoughts.
This is the place to come for the latest news and information about the CAUHF Group. Also, don’t forget to check-in to our regular Tuesday Night Net, held every Tuesday evening at 8:00 p.m. on all of the AR Links System Repeaters such as 443.200 in Little Rock, 444.700 in North Little Rock and a dozen or so more around the state. Click on the AR Links System tab above.