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"Texting" on a Ham Radio: ICOM ID-4100A

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Well, that feature is leveraging the D-Star protocol and I've never tried doing D-Star in simplex. I would have to try that out if I had someone who was close enough.
 

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Well, that feature is leveraging the D-Star protocol and I've never tried doing D-Star in simplex. I would have to try that out if I had someone who was close enough.

I have D-Star in my cars, Icom 5100As. Interesting to listen to the rare D-Star transmission . . . picked up someone on Westford repeater the other day talking with someone 3100 miles away in Scotland, both clear as a bell. Couldn't understand the Scot due to accent however, [laugh].

As a new Ham I'm totally lost and nobody I know around here that is a Ham knows anything about D-Star. Otherwise on FM Waltham repeater seems to be locked in with a "sewing circle" every day, all day. Not much other activity on 2m/70cm that I can hear. I've become a SWL at this point.
 
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I have D-Star in my cars, Icom 5100As. Interesting to listen to the rare D-Star transmission . . . picked up someone on Westford repeater the other day talking with someone 3100 miles away in Scotland, both clear as a bell. Couldn't understand the Scot due to accent however, [laugh].

As a new Ham I'm totally lost and nobody I know around here that is a Ham knows anything about D-Star. Otherwise on FM Waltham repeater seems to be locked in with a "sewing circle" every day, all day. Not much other activity on 2m/70cm that I can hear. I've become a SWL at this point.

Try Paxton. There are the drive-time rag chews, but otherwise, the box is pretty open except when there are nets running. George's Old TImers net is at 730pm daily and runs up to an hour and then there is the nightly NTS nets at 9pm which run less than 10 minutes.

I've had my license for a couple years now and I still don't get D-Star. I've signed up to Westford and have talked to a couple people out west on it, but I do find the audio quality sub-par compared to full quieting FM. Yeah, there is compression that impacts it, but man...I just can't be bothered. Trying to use Fusion as well...not many Fusion repeaters here in Central MA to play with...so I'm trying the DVMini. Again...not super up on that mode as well.
 
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I think Paxton would be a bit far for me to reliably pick up, >50 miles PTP.

You'd be surprised. We get people from the North Shore down to Plymouth who can hit that box. Its about 1350 ft up.

Hell, one of the NTS net controllers lives out in Hull, MA and he comes in without any problem. And as the crow flies, that's about 53 miles give or take.
 

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You'd be surprised. We get people from the North Shore down to Plymouth who can hit that box. Its about 1350 ft up.

Hell, one of the NTS net controllers lives out in Hull, MA and he comes in without any problem. And as the crow flies, that's about 53 miles give or take.

I'll have to add Paxton to my Yaesu FT-60 and see what happens.
 

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I received nothing last night on Paxton when I was home (had to head out and serve papers so got back here ~8PM) and mostly static with a partial one-party only conversation this morning on Paxton.
 

cockpitbob

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Well, you have a HT...so that MAY impact your ability to reach it. Be interesting to see.

A base unit or mobile unit has no issues from what I've seen.
I put a home made J-pole in the attic and that made a dramatic difference over standing in the front yard with a 15" whip antenna. As they say, spend the money on an antenna, not more power.
 
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I received nothing last night on Paxton when I was home (had to head out and serve papers so got back here ~8PM) and mostly static with a partial one-party only conversation this morning on Paxton.

Well, that's unfortunate. It is a great repeater. Not checked out Marlboro during the morning/evening commutes, but my few times on the box doesn't really show it to be too busy. I'm guessing you can hit that one at least.

- - - Updated - - -

I put a home made J-pole in the attic and that made a dramatic difference over standing in the front yard with a 15" whip antenna. As they say, spend the money on an antenna, not more power.

True that. I have a Diamond X50 up about 15 feet and can get to a lot of repeaters vs using an HT. But my main antenna is on the roof of the house about 35-40 feet up and it has a ton of gain at both 2m and 440. Just under 9 db at 2m and about 12 db at 440. (Diamond X510). With that antenna, I can hit northern Connecticut and central NH without too much effort.
 
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one-eyed Jack

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You'd be surprised. We get people from the North Shore down to Plymouth who can hit that box. Its about 1350 ft up.

Hell, one of the NTS net controllers lives out in Hull, MA and he comes in without any problem. And as the crow flies, that's about 53 miles give or take.
Many times I was able to work Paxton from my pontoon boat on Pawtuckaway lake in Nottingham NH. 75w, half wave vert. on a big aluminum roof on a 800+ acre water ground plane. Jack.
 

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I've used the Paxton repeater from the parking lot of HRO in Salem on an HT before. It required holding it out over the car roof to get decent audio on TX, but it worked.
 

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Well, that's unfortunate. It is a great repeater. Not checked out Marlboro during the morning/evening commutes, but my few times on the box doesn't really show it to be too busy. I'm guessing you can hit that one at least.

I've heard a little traffic on Marlboro. Haven't had time to program the ID-5100s for Paxton yet. Probably this weekend.

No antennas in/on the house until I get my contractor to help me install grounding rods (he's a Ham also) amongst other work he is occasionally doing here. Not happening until late Fall most likely, at which point I want to put in an HF rig in the house.
 
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I've heard a little traffic on Marlboro. Haven't had time to program the ID-5100s for Paxton yet. Probably this weekend.

No antennas in/on the house until I get my contractor to help me install grounding rods (he's a Ham also) amongst other work he is occasionally doing here. Not happening until late Fall most likely, at which point I want to put in an HF rig in the house.

Why do you need help with the grounding rods? Is it the part about tying into the panel?
 

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Why do you need help with the grounding rods? Is it the part about tying into the panel?

It's the part about driving a 8' rod (multiple) into the ground that is full of large and larger rocks in multiple places. My contractor came up with a good idea (rent a jack hammer, remove blade and use it to pound the rods into the ground). His plan is a 1 day rental and do about 3 of us who all took the licensing course together, and we split the rental cost. Also will be drilling holes thru the side of the house, I'd prefer a professional to deal with these items. Plus until he's done and I empty the Pod sitting next to my driveway I can't get a tree company to come in and remove some trees that need to go. After that I'll be stringing wire between trees for the antennas.

When I put birdfeeders, shepherd hooks, even lawn lights in the ground it takes forever as I hit rocks on the way down and all around where I want to put them, so putting ground rods in will not be a trivial matter.
 

cockpitbob

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Don't forget this is a ground for ham radio, not building wiring safety. If you hit a rock after it's so deep you can't get it out, just cut the top of the rod off and call it good. The difference between 5' and 8' won't be noticeable. I've read of people cutting 8' rods in half and using twice as many 4' rods.

When I put birdfeeders, shepherd hooks, even lawn lights in the ground it takes forever as I hit rocks on the way down and all around where I want to put them, so putting ground rods in will not be a trivial matter.
Reminds me of my dad who was from Oregon. When he and Mom moved to CT he cleared a garden area for her. After stripping the sod and turning-in some manure he came in and said "It's done, but you'll never be able to grow a straight carrot."[rofl]
 
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