London Hamfest Report Sunday Sept 18, 2016

Thanks to Mike VE3MKX and his digital camera for a glimpse of the Heathkit heaven and gas masks this time out

img_3848 img_3843 img_3833 img_3826 img_3818 img_3813 img_3810img_3844

look at the sweet Ten-Tecs…..and a real find the Kw2000B…from the UK

 

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Baofeng DM-5R Buyer Beware

UPDATE: FOR THOSE THAT WILL NOT READ THE COMPLETE POSTING

THIS RADIO IF IT ONLY SUPPORTS TIER 1 DMR CAN ONLY BE USED IN SIMPLEX MODE AND THUS WILL NOT BE USEFUL TO ACCESS DMR-MARC REPEATERS OR THE BRANDMEISTER REPEATER NETWORK

THEY WILL BE USEFUL TO OPERATE AS A FRS OR GMRS RADIO IN DIGITAL DMR MODE ON TIME SLOT ONE

THE BAOFENG SERIES OF RADIOS HAVE BEEN FAITHFUL RADIOS AT A GREAT PRICE POINT OVER THE PAST YEARS AND AN IDEAL GO-KIT, GLOVE BOX, FIRST RADIO, 7TH RADIO, OR YOUR ONLY RADIO

BUT UNTIL Fujian Nanan Baofeng Electronic Co. CAN CONFIRM IF IT SUPPORTS TIER 2 THE PURCHASER OF THIS RADIO MAY NOT BE HAPPY IF THEY PLAN TO USE IT FOR DMR-MARC OR BRANDMEISTER REPEATER USE

THE 16 CHANNEL SELECTOR IS MISSING ON THE RADIO AS WELL

FOR MORE INFO ON THE STANDARDS GO TO http://dmr-marc.net/FAQ.html or http://ham-dmr.nl/?wpfb_dl=236

I have been alerted by several hundred emails about the launch of the new Baofeng DM-5R (I am the President of the Toronto Baofeng users group – TBUG) claiming a $70 us price and dual band capability. Baofeng China is not returning telephone calls or providing several evaluation units. Manuals , accessories or documentation is lacking. I have not found any FCC or IC type acceptance submissions.

If this is a real radio it well set the new standard for FRS and GMRS capabilities supporting the ETSI DMR standard. Interoperability with the DMR-MARC or Brandmeister Radio networks may be severely limited if initial research demonstrates this being a Tier 1 radio.

There is a lot of confusion about DMR and it is important to understand the various Tiers of operation.

Digital Mobile Radio (DMR) is a standard that has been developed by ETSI  – one of the world’s leading standards development organizations. Founded initially to serve European needs, ETSI has grown rapidly to become highly-respected as a producer of technical standards for worldwide use.

The ETSI DMR standard which sets out a digital radio specification for professional, commercial and private radio users. In practice, DMR manufacturers have focussed on building products for the professional and commercial markets for both licensed conventional mode operation (known as DMR Tier II) and licensed trunked mode operation (known as DMR Tier III). DMR is a two slot Time-Division Multiple Access (TDMA) system offering low cost and flexible digital voice and data solutions, and uses a well established 4FSK modulation scheme. The TDMA implementation in DMR offers a spectrum-efficiency of 6.25 kHz per channel whilst also giving the ability to deliver the advanced features that professional users require.

The standards that define DMR consist of four documents:

  • TS 102 361-1: the DMR air interface protocol
  • TS 102 361-2: the DMR voice and generic services and facilities
  • TS 102 361-3: the DMR data protocol
  • TS 102 361-4: the DMR trunking protocol

DMR TDMA also brings low infrastructure costs as one repeater can deliver two communication paths. DMR also offers great power efficiency. The standard is designed to operate within the existing 12.5kHz channel spacing used in licensed land mobile frequency bands around the word so making user migration from analogue to digital seamless.

DMR offers many benefits for a user to transition from analog to digital formats.

The ETSI DMR Standard defines three different tiers of operation

  • Tier I (unlicensed): DMR equipment works in Direct Mode (unit-to-unit) on public frequencies. Tier 1 DMR devices are best for individuals, recreation, small retail, or other situations that do not require wide area coverage. A repeater is not involved and it supports simplex transmissions.
  • Tier II (licensed conventional): This Tier is aimed to be a direct replacement for the analog conventional radio system. These DMR systems operate under individual licenses working in Direct Mode (unit-to-unit) or using a Base Station (BS) for repeating. It has a degree of wide-area coverage and is targeted at users “who need spectral efficiency, advanced voice features and integrated IP data services in licensed bands for high-power communications.”. This is for commercial users and is a typical business repeater system covering a city – wide area.
  • Tier III (licensed trunked): DMR trunking systems operate under individual licenses with a controller function that automatically regulates the communications. It also supports packet data services in a variety of formats, including support for IPv4 and IPv6. It is ideal for organizations looking to migrate from MPT-1327/EADS/LTR (logic trunked radio) systems or who want the full benefits of managed trunking, voice and data solution. This is for enterprise multi-site commercial users providing extended coverage across a provincial or even country boundary. This system has multiple repeaters.

If you have a Tier 1 radio, then the benefit to the user is digital format in a unit to unit direct mode environment. i.e. Simplex. This type of radio will not support Mototrbo offered by DMR-MARC or BRandmesster or standalone repeaters.

Ontario NVIS Event October 16th, 2016

Ontario NVIS Event October 16th

We invite all hams for a  southern Ontario regional NVIS communications event on October 16th from 1-4 PM EDT.

The goal of the event is to make contacts and talk to other operators using NVIS techniques. No restrictions on operation, just get on the air and operate with your best NVIS antenna.
Bands of interest are 40, 60, and 80, depending on conditions. Suggested frequencies for

SSB are 3.700-750, 5.375, and 7.060-070.

CW, 3.550, 5.3465, and 7.030.
We suggest this identifier when calling to make it easier to identify the participants: CQ NVIS Ontario “call sign”.
Ham operators across the province in many different clubs have expressed interest and hope you will join us on the air.

Participating clubs are :

Hamilton
Peel
Niagara
Kitchener
Kingston
York Region

In order to provide reliable communications with the 200 mile band the NVIS antenna is best to radiate between 70 to 80 degrees. A vertical has a low angle of radiation causing a bounce off the ionosphere that allows dx operation and is not appropriate for NVIS operation. We want to hit the F layer at the sweet spot of 70 degrees. This can be achieved by the use of dipoles at a low height. The common antenna height is 16 feet.

nvis-radiation-angle

The most reliable frequencies for NVIS communications are between 1.8 MHz and 8 MHz. Common bands used in amateur radio at are 3.5 MHz at night and 7 MHz during daylight, with experimental use of 5 MHz (60-meter) frequencies. Military NVIS communications mostly take place on 2-4 MHz at night and on 5-7 MHz during daylight.

Here are some simple antennas that can be easily made and deployed

http://arrl-ohio.org/SEC/nvis/NVIS%20-%20DX%20Engineering.pdf

I built this one

http://www.marc.on.ca/marc/ares/documents/NVIS_2040-80_20antenna.pdf

This is the AS-2559 DIY clone that I built but the leg lengths are not for 80m and 40m but with an antenna tuner it covers 80m-60m-40m easily. I use a 16 foot painter pole as the center support.

nvis_antenna

Another trick to increase the antenna take off angle towards 70 degrees is to use a mobile antenna and angle it accordingly

nvismobile

The last SET exercise proved the NVIS antenna to be useful with contacts made with the NCS (however they had the wrong antenna in place to be really effective). I did make contacts into Indianapolis, buffalo, Windsor with this antenna using 50 watts with 5-7 to 5-9 signal reports.

This has been a proven antenna design for many years with different variants and the simplest format can also be the inverted V dipole which could be a great antenna to use for the ONTARS or POWWOW nets.

NVIS is about radiation angle not so much as the antenna type.

New York Region – King City DMR Repeater

The York Region ham radio community is excited to have a new repeater available for use.The DMR repeater details are as follows:

442.1625 MHz Plus 5 MHz

Colour Code 1

Local 1 : Group 9 TS1

Local 2: Group 2 TS2

Range testing is underway with check ins from Uxbridge (Steve VE3EZ), Newmarket (Don VE3IXJ), Hamilton (VE3AM), Yonge/Sheppard (Robert VA3BXG) and mobile from Ikea – North York Leslie/401 (John VE3IPS)

Plans are for further antenna enhancements and additional talk groups

 

images a view of york region from Canadas Wonderland