Attention: Local D-Star Users – New Equipment!

The VARC would like to inform local D-Star users that it has received the new D-Star VHF module and 1.2 GHz duplexer for the existing 1.2 GHz voice and data modules.  The VARC technical team is in the process of installing the new equipment at the clubs repeater site.  The equipment was provided via a grant administered by the Department of Health.  The VARC has been asked to sponsor the equipment for local amateurs so they can use the equipment to provide communications during emergency situations.  The club is providing the antenna and power systems for the new equipment.  If you are interested in supporting the D-Star effort please use this website to join the club.


Icom announces new mobile radio – IC-7100!

Since ICOM revealed the new IC-7100 transceiver there’s been much speculation on price.

Given that it’s an updated replacement to the IC-7000, and that it includes D-STAR, we know that the street price in the US will exceed the $1300 price tag on the 7000. But the question remains, how much more?

There are few clues.

One source in the Far East has put the price at 158,000 yen which equates to about $2000 US. That seems more than reasonable for a brand new HF/6M/VHF/UHF and D-STAR transceiver in this class.

We don’t yet know when it will be approved by the FCC for sale in the US, but when it is, I imagine it will be in hot demand at $1,899.

How about you, what do you think the price tag will say when it finally becomes available?

D-Star System Testing Update

As many of you already know the D-Star project has been under way.  It was last month that the UHF D-Star (443.7125 MHz) repeater was placed on the air for testing.  It has been linked to systems all over the world and many contacts have been made by local stations who are D-Star capable.

After programming and testing VARC members turned up the (1299.200 MHz) data channel.  So now users who have a Icom ID-1 radios can now access the internet via their radio.  The RF connection is not as fast as DSL but it is usable for emergency communications.

The next part of the D-Star project is to bring up the 1.2 GHz voice module.  In order to move forward a special duplexer will have to be purchased for the system.

If you are interested in D-Star please contact KF4GTA.



Repeater Project Update – June 3

Yesterday members of the technical team met to work on the repeater project.  Right now all work is focused on the repeater equipment itself.  The D-Star equipment was installed in the new 6 ft cabinet and placed in the new equipment room.  Both the VHF and UHF repeaters were removed from the short cabinets and installed in a new 6 ft cabinet.  The taller cabinets allow for more room in the equipment room.  The team also prepared some high speed data equipment and cabling that will be used for a temporary high speed data link to the tank.  This circuit will be used until the permanent DSL circuit can be installed.

Today team members installed the high speed data equipment.  A Wifi link was established on the 900 MHz band which will allow for the D-Star and Allstar equipment to be brought up for testing.   Progress is being made with the team putting in more than 40 hours each since the beginning of the year.  The team would like to thank those who have generously provided their time, other resources or financial support towards the repeater project.

New D-Star / APRS / Repeater Equipment Room = Progress!

Again the technical team assembled early this Saturday morning in order to begin work on the new larger equipment room for both the analog and the new digital D-Star repeater systems.  They were able to install most of the AC power conduit, breakers, outlets etc. and other electrical equipment needed in order to operate the repeaters, D-Star and APRS equipment.

The room is cooler since it is inside of the water tank but the air will have to be conditioned in order to control the humidity levels.  Because there were large air gaps between the tank wall and the room walls the team had to use spray expansion foam in order to seal the room better from the rest of the tank itself.  The team still needs to finish the electrical, build a better entry door to keep the outside out, paint the concrete floor, and other miscellaneous work tasks.  Once the room is ready then the equipment will have to be moved and installed.  A lot of work has to be done in order to have the room ready before the Century Bike ride in March so the team plans to work the next few Saturdays until the work is done.

The old VARC equipment shelter was built almost 30 years ago and is made of wood materials.  The VARC was going to have to make critical decision in regards to its shelter because even though it is still serviceable it is not large enough to house the new D-Star equipment that the VARC received through a government grant last year.  Because of this the VARC technical team made a request of the city and was able to secure the new equipment room from with the help of one of the clubs emergency communications partners- Ashley Tye who is the director of  EMA.

The VARC is truly grateful to Ashley, the city, and our very own technical team for the help and support with this project.  The VARC also thanks those members and non-members who have contributed to the project financially but more funds are required in order to complete the project.  So please send your check today!

D-Star System Progress Report

On Thursday June 2 the technical team met with the EMA director during lunch to discuss various logistic issues related to the installation of the new D-Star repeater systems. Main topics covered were system housing and communications connectivity for the new system.  The technical team is continuing forward with the system installation.

DStar Repeater

The city of Valdosta and surrounding counties will soon have a DStar coverage. Through a grant made by the Tift regional hospital, a 1.2ghz & 440 repeater will be installed at the Valdosta city water tower for licensed amateurs to use.

On March 26, 2011, VARC technical team met together to assemble, configure, and test the new D-Star repeater system. Below you will find photos during the initial stages of configuration.
Your content here…

Your content here…

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