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690 & Digi

posted Jul 17, 2010, 12:15 AM by Hamish Dobson   [ updated Jul 17, 2010, 1:33 AM ]
The 690 repeater which has been operating from the top dipole on the new pole now consists of  Tait T300 modules operating to specification. The digi on the new licenced frequency of 144.575MHz is also in operation being installed at the same time as the 690 Tait T300 modules. Both repeaters seem to be working correctly with 690 appears to have similar coverage to the national system repeater (allowing for the additional transmitter power and aerial gain of the national system) and the digi seems as before to be outperforming the voice repeater at the same site, the advantage of digital with short burst of data quickly repeated over voice not repeated which requires most of a transmission to be fully understood
  I would like to thank all those who have assisted to enable the latest installations in particular  Alan for arranging access, Roger who repaired and tested the 690 equipment,programmed the digi and supplied all the equipment so it only need to be installed in the rack, Peter who assisted and ended up painting the hut with water resistant Febsil and Warren and Nathan,amateurs who supplied and operated the test equipment to confirm that both the equipment and aerials of the digi and 690 are operating to the standard expected. (A long day for them coming from well south of Napier to be north of Wairoa by 0900 hours, then checking out the rally course as well as other work and then almost back to Hastings by 2000hrs - all seen on APRS via the digi but at least they know that 690 and the digi are now operating correctly and as hopefully they will continue to do during the rally)
 The only possible future improvements would be licencing the repeaters to allow additional transmitter power or higher gain aerials or aerials at a greater height ( aerial changes would also improve reception) for better transmission and/or receiving equipment better able to receive weak signals with the high level of RF noise at the site.  All of these would require major outlay even if permission could be obtained and with the present uncertainty over the long term siting of the repeaters would not seem to worthwhile for the possible gain.