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Vashon-Maury Island Radio Club Holds LACC and Repeater Show and Tell

Nov 4

Written by:
11/4/2014 9:55 PM  RssIcon

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOver 25 ham radio operators showed up for the local amateur radio club’s bimonthly meeting tonight at Vashon’s Emergency Operations Center.

John Galus, past president of the club demonstrated the newly upgraded Local Area Communication Caches (LACCs) for the Dockton and Burton radio stations. (The north end and Tahlequah and 5th Station 55 caches have yet to receive the latest updates, but received upgrades in the form of hand-me-downs from the other caches.)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERANotable upgrades include newly attached half tables that triple the working surface area, completely overhauled and simplified instructions for the stations, updated frequency lists – including the island’s new repeater, removal of low priority CD radios, and upgrades from Win 98 to Win XP on the Winlink (email over radio) modems and computers.

After a significant sugar infusion (courtesy of a major homemade cookie break) and opportunity to try out the LACC hands-on, the second half of the program commenced.

Bob Smueles brought the club up to speed on the newly installed repeater on Sunrise Ridge: KG7CM (for now), 433.775MHz (+5MHz, 103.5 tone). Initiated by former islander Randy Bardwell, who envisioned and created a software based, highly flexible repeater, this model was traded for a solid surplus police GE Master 3 repeater with a better frequency than we had previously had access to. The new repeater has superior clarity and a number of features we may take advantage of in the future.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMajor kudos were given to Tim Hardy (local and state’s MARS expert) for his donations of valuable equipment and expertise, John Galus who did much of the programming work, as well as Rick Wallace and the Voice of Vashon for facility work and additional funding support.

CERT and Ham members present discussed holding a day of hands on practice to gain familiarity with the LACCs and new repeater. Mark Ellis-Taylor apparently is already working with CERT volunteers and others toward this goal.

The only question left unexplored was why so many present (including both presenters) preferred red plaid…

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