ZS1FAS + Henk + Marc left Kuils River at around 07:30
Arrived on site 08:30
We did some maintenance work on the hut and cable tray with stays.
Stays had to be sanded off first, some rust were forming. We used grey NS4 and applied 3 coatings.
We mixed Tylon Keyit with cement and applied to the hut, quite a messy business!! Used a generator to operate the drill for the mixing part, did not want to interfere with the radio equipment.
Installed a new perspex lid for the electricity box.
Got some sun burn 😀
Left around 14:30
Back home around 15:30
ZS1VDV went to investigate the power supply.
The Hawequa VHF repeater was on backup power.
The problem was a crimp in the power distribution box that failed over time.
The crimp was replaced, soldered and heat shrinked
Lots of work done over the weekend and the donation drought has finally been broken! Yay!
All the juicy details inside, as always. Enjoy! 🙂
Jan ZS1VDV and David ZS1DDK performed maintenance on two repeaters this Sunday past. At the Piketberg site (145.625MHz), a local interference source was found. The repeater squelch was adjusted to 0.25microvolts, the controller was reconfigured to key on CTCSS and carrier instead of carrieronly and the duplexer was finetuned.
A circulator was installed between the repeater transmitter and the duplexer. At Hawequas (145.650MHz), the UHF link repeat setting was in an inconsistent state due to a deactivation on 15 Feb to protect the transmitter. The setting was deactivated then reactivated. On both sites, the controller firmware was updated.
A cash donation has been received from Dirk van der Berg ZS1VDB.
ZS1DDK and ZS1VDV started just past 05:00 in Bellville. Loaded all equipment and left Stellenbosch 06:00 for Piketberg.
Arrived 07:45 at Piketberg Site.
On Inspection 3 main problems was found:
- There is a local signal creating interference on the VHF Repeater
- The controller was set to key the link on COS, with the problem that this was too often.
- The duplexer was not tuned well enough.
- The SQL of the VHF Repeater was set to 0.25microVolt.
- The controller was set to key the link on the presence of CTCSS(PL) and COS(SQL).
- The duplexer was retuned.
- The circulator was installed between the VHF repeater and duplexer.
- The controller FW was updated.
Left Piketberg site around 11:30.
Quickly had lunch in Wellington.
Arrived at 13:45 at Hawequa.
- UHF Repeater was not TXing.
- The repeat setting on the controller was in an inconsistent state, this was due to deactivation which was done 15 Feb to protect the TX radio. The setting was deactivated and the reactivated.
Left Hawequa site around 14:15.
Arrived 15:00 in Stellenbosch unpacked.
Finally got home at around 15:45.
It’s been rather hectic around here lately. Tilers arrive tomorrow so shifting stuff out of the way has occupied lots of time. And energy. Ah, well, I need the exercise 🙂
Report attached for your perusal… enjoy! 🙂
Jan ZS1VDV and Rassie ZS1YT reinstalled the link controller and radios at the 145.650MHz Hawequas site on Sunday 14 February 2015. An interference issue was observed that could be cured by disconnecting the UHF link from Piketberg. Jan has requested monitoring of the interference and, if possible, observation of the UHF link from Piketberg.
ZS1VDV and ZS1YT installed the link controller and radios back at 650 site today.
Something is however keying (breaking the sql) on the UHF RX link radio.
By disconnecting the VHF en UHF at Piketberg with dtmf tones, I did stop this from happening. Which leads me to believe the problem is at Piketberg. (But does not exclude local noise at 650 site)
I would however like to confirm this, before doing a trip to Piketberg.
First thing, if you observe this noise on the 650 this week
- First try to send 8104 to 625 (piketberg). If this does not solve it, or you cannot get in goto 2
- Send 8004 to 650. This will disconnect the vhf en uhf links at Hawequa
Both these fixes only lasts 9 hours for now.
When you here the noise on the 650, check if you can here the same noise on 431.200 from Piketberg.
Any other info or ideas, please feel free to send.
Greetings and salutations!
Well, there’s been a bit happening lately and… nah, you’re gonna need to read the report to find out what. 🙂
Notes and Updates since last report
- Jan van der Vyver ZS1VDV and Mike Kellett ZS1TAF performed upgrades and maintenance work on the 145.675MHz repeater at Jonaskop on Saturday 6 February. A new minirack was installed and the repeater was replaced with one aligned to the controller and link radios. A new rackmount PSU and circulator were installed along with the controller and link radios. The fly lead between the duplexer and the heliax was replaced, the connection to the 4stack was serviced some water was dried out and the connection triplesealed. Initial reports indicate a significant improvement in the signal from the repeater. Further signal reports welcome.
- A new addition to the status report – the Riversdale repeater will be included in the WCRWG report henceforth. See below for the details.
ZS1TAF and ZS1VDV went to Jonaskop.
We left Stellenbosch at 06:15.
First did a quick status check on battery system, power supply and SWR on VHF repeater. All was fine, except the SWR on the VHF was a bit high (The first time I saw a VXR9000 cut back on it’s output power).
Installed small rack
Swopped out the repeater with the one aligned with link controller en link radios.
Installed new rack mount PSU.
Installed link radios.
Installed link controller.
Installed new circulator.
Replaced fly lead between duplexer and heliax (to remove a damaged barrel connector, in future we must replace the UHF t piece FMF)
Serviced the heliax to 4 stack connection. Found some water in connection. Was dried out and triple rubber taped and double isolation taped for UV protection.
Was back in Stellenbosch 14:00