SEMARA Radio Room Tutorial Postponed

Update 01/13/2018 by W1RJC: This post was updated to reflect the latest information provided by Don, WA1BXY.

Please see Don, WA1BXY‘s earlier post regarding the new radio room.  He had hoped to hold a showing and tutorial, but this has now been postponed until further notice.

It was originally scheduled for Sunday, January 7, 2018, however the driveway was not plowed from the earlier blizzard.  It was then rescheduled for Sunday, January 14, 2018, but Don has also postponed this stating that there are no cables available for the radio until he has a chance to get them made.

When Don schedules a new date, we will be sure to post it.

Business Meeting Postponed – January 11, 2018

Marcel, W1MLD has announced the following:

Due to the impending weather conditions Thursday evening, I am postponing the business meeting until next Thursday, January 11, 2018.  Safety is my concern.

Marcel, W1MLD
SEMARA President

As of this posting, the National Weather Service in Taunton has issued the following under its Watches, Warnings & Advisories section:

…BLIZZARD WARNING FROM 7 AM TO 7 PM EST THURSDAY…

Bill Vincent, W1POW, SK

It is with great regret that we announce the passing of longtime SEMARA member William L. Vincent, W1POW of Dartmouth.  Bill passed away at home on Sunday, December 31, 2017 surrounded by his family at age 92.  He was a ham radio operator since 1992; originally assigned the call sign N1LTY before getting his vanity call sign W1POW which reflected his past.

Mr. Vincent was held as a German Prisoner of War (POW) for eight months during World War II while serving in the European Theater.  During that war, he attained the rank of Private First Class.  Besides ham radio, Bill was also a member of the American Legion, the Rod & Gun Club and he worked for Nabisco as a delivery man until his retirement.  He leaves behind his loving wife of 61 years, Gloria M. (Botelho) Vincent.

Please share your thoughts and memories of Bill using the “Comments” link at the top of this story.  We send our sympathy to Gloria and his family for their loss.  May he rest in peace.

Thank you for your service, sir.

W1POW

… -.-

SEMARA Radio Room Tutorial – January 7, 2018

Don, WA1BXY reports:

Still a work in progress.  Got the computers and monitors in.  In process of getting them setup and updated.  Waiting for more stuff to be delivered, but starting to look like a radio club again.  Hope to have it all up and running in the next few weeks “time permitting.”

With that said, is there any interest from members who would like to start a contest group?  Put on some good showings and standing to hopefully get W1AEC really recognized as a competitive station?  If so, let me know and we can hash out the details.

Also, I am looking at January 7th to show whom ever wants to learn how to run the two stations that we have up.  One station is the Kenwood TS-570 which is 85% complete.  The other is the Elecraft, which is 99% complete.  That Sunday, I will be at club.  If anyone is interested in this, please let me know.

Thanks,

Don, WA1BXY

Click the above image to view the full size photo.

220 & 900 Repeaters Fully Functional

2016-10-09After many days and hours of work, the SEMARA 224.800 repeater is now back on the air and interfaced to a new repeater controller.  It has the ability to link via IRLP, EchoLink and RF through a remotely selectable 16-channel UHF radio.  It is mainly parked on the New England Network (IRLP 9120 / EchoLink 9129 *NEW-ENG*), in which the Quahog Repeater Network based in Rhode Island is also linked most of the time.

The SEMARA 927.8375 repeater’s IRLP node is now back up and running.  It is once again parked on New England Amateur Radio 900 MHz Network or “NEAR-900” (IRLP 9125).  The repeater controller for this repeater was left in place, due to the fact that using the IRLP node itself as a repeater controller isn’t reliable.  This means that all three SEMARA repeaters are now using their own SCOM 7330 repeater controllers and each repeater also has its own IRLP node.  Keep in mind that the fans in this repeater still need to be replaced, in which I need to get together with Jeff-N1ZZN to swap them out.

The 147.000 EchoIRLP node had apparently froze a few weeks ago.  Joey-KC1FWN had brought this to my attention last week.  The node was rebooted this morning and it successfully began working again.

Looking to the future, the 900 fan swapping and mounting of the 220 equipment in the 2m rack are the next tasks to tackle.  The equipment doesn’t look at all impressive right now sitting around at the repeater site unmounted.  I start a new job tomorrow and my time will be limited, however most of the heavy work has been finished.  Eventually, a dedicated 220 antenna will also need to be mounted at the top of our tower as I had previously mentioned.  The 220 repeater is temporarily using the 220 section of a tri-band antenna (a Comet CX-333) which is less than ideal.  I recommend that the club looks into buying a 4-dipole array antenna next year and plans a hardline/antenna install around the summer of 2017 through NETCOM’s maintenance window in our agreement with them.  At some point at a future meeting going into 2017, I will try to be present to talk about this and to make a motion to do so.

Thanks for your patience and enjoy your 2m, 220 and 900 SEMARA repeaters!

73,

Richard J. Cabral, W1RJC
SEMARA Repeater Committee

220 & 900 Repeater Update

2016-09-01Quick update before tonight’s business meeting:

The Raspberry Pi board for the 900 node which is used to link it into the 900 network was bad.  In the picture, the one in hand is the bad one with its replacement being tested behind it.  The board is $35, but I had this brand new one that I am donating to the club.  Also, the fans in the 900 repeater that cool the PAs have seized.  Via Jeff-N1ZZN, we will get replacements next week from another Motorola MSF5000, also at no cost to the club (thanks Jeff).

Planning to get the 900 repeater back on the air when I pick up the fans from Jeff.  The 220 repeater wiring is complete with a few level adjustments and programming of the repeater controller remaining.  I’d like to be able to make one trip to the repeater site and get both repeaters beck on air together when I get the fans from Jeff.

I hoped to have this all done in August as I previously stated.  Let’s aim for next week (again, please don’t hold me to it, but I will try).

Thanks for everyone’s patience during the downtime.

Richard J. Cabral
SEMARA Repeater Committee

220 & 900 Repeaters Temporarily Off-Air

2016-07-30SEMARA’s 224.800 and 927.8375 repeaters are temporarily off the air as of today for a repair and upgrade.

1) The 900 repeater’s IRLP node failed over a month ago and it wasn’t liked to NEAR-900.  After a couple of trips to the site, it was determined that I need to re-image the SD card.  That node is being repaired and reconfigured and it will now also act as the repeater controller.

2) The 220 repeater will receive the repeater controller that was previously on the 900 repeater.  This will allow it to be interfaced to both its own IRLP node (4215) and a UHF link radio for the first time.  This will allow the repeater to be configured in a few different ways for linking.  More info on its linking status/schedule will be announced soon.

I am working from home this upcoming week which will give me additional free time to work on this project.  This is why I decided that now would be a good time to take the repeaters offline and execute the above changes.  I will send out another update when progress and/or completion occurs.  The SEMARA business meeting is this Thursday and if possible, I’ll try and get it all finished before the meeting, but I cannot guarantee it.

Thank you and sorry for any inconvenience that temporarily being off-air may cause.

Please note: 147.000 and it’s node (4210) are still ON-AIR and are unaffected by this work.

Thanks,

Richard J. Cabral
SEMARA Repeater Committee

Dave Dean, K1JGV, SK

2016-05-17

Photo Credit: Michael Ponte, W1BZJ

It is with great regret that we announce the passing of longtime SEMARA member David G. Dean, K1JGV of Dartmouth.  Dave passed away on the morning of Tuesday, May 17, 2016.  He was 77 years old.  Dave was a kind gentleman and an all around nice guy who had a strong passion for the things he did.  At SEMARA, he will always be remembered as one of our most dedicated buildings and grounds members.

Please share your thoughts and memories of Dave using the “Comments” link at the top of this story.  We send our sympathy to Amy and his family for their loss.  May he rest in peace.

K1JGV … -.-

John Williams, KB1EVY, SK

2016-02-11

Photo Credit: David H. Pascoe, KM3T; WRTC Station Test 2013

It is with great regret that we announce the tragic passing of John E. Williams, II, KB1EVY of East Wareham at age 70.  John passed away prior to noontime on Tuesday, February 9, 2016.  According to NBC 10 (WJAR, Providence), police officers had executed a well-being check at his 118 Glen Charlie Road home and discovered his body.  He suffered from multiple gunshot wounds and it is unknown at this time who the suspect(s) is/are.

Although not a SEMARA member, John was very active on the air.  According to his QRZ page, he owned a Kenwood TS-530S and TS-440S for HF where he was active primarily on 75 and 15 meters.  He was also periodically on 2-meters across various local repeaters.

Share your thoughts and memories of John using the “Comments” link at the top of this story.  We send our sympathy to his family for their loss.  May he rest in peace.

KB1EVY, SK