Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Savannah Echolink Update

Here is a update on our efforts to establish a Savannah Area Echolink Node as reported by Jerry, W4SGA..........

I am delighted to announce after weeks or work, experimenting and troubleshooting a working Echolink repeater link (w4sga-R) is up and running.

It all began just after Christmas when Dan KF4MND, Ryan AJ4MY and Guy K4GTM and I got together and hooked up an Echolink station at my house on Cape Harwicke in Bryam County establishing a repeater link using Dan's interface and my Yaesu 857D to the 146.700 repeater. It worked great. But it tied up my radio I use for HF and literally took me off the air except for the Echolink repeater link. 2 days later I couldn't stand being off HF so I disconnected everything and put may station back together.

Since I already had a Yaesu FT2800M, a computer with high-speed internet that I could dedicate to Echolink and a Tigertronics Signlaink UBS unit I decided to get the proper interface cables and make this my Echolink station. Shortly after new years I got the connecting cables and started to work hooking it up. According to Tigertronics and the Yahoo Group for Echolink hundreds of system were running this setup or something very similar.

It took weeks of working about a hour at a time only a few days a week to exhaust every possible solution I could think of and a few things Tigertronics told me to do before I had to admit I had reached an impasse. I was able to get audio from the receiver into the Echolink software but I could not transmit. Using the PSK program Digipan and putting it into the tune mode I was able to confirm the software was activating the PPT circuitry but every time I tried to pass audio it would only made the Signalink box click. It would not transmit a continuous carrier.

Finally just Monday after another short call to Tigertronics I had it working. By the way - these folks are great. They don't care where or how you got their product, they are more than happy to help you and they really know their stuff.

On the front of the Signalink USB device are 3 knobs. One for receive, one for transmit, and on for delay. They told me to turn the delay knob from the 9 o'clock position, which was where it worked just fine for PSK on another radio, to 3 o'clock.

Well that did it.

A few more tweaks in the audio software and everything works fine now.

Granted, I have a lot more to learn and probably a lot more tweaks to make but we are on the air with w4sga-R link to the CARS 146.700 repeater in an experimental mode.

Quite a few people have used the link over the last 24 hours including about 6 stations that I logged from 2 land, California, Alabama, Canada, Australia, and a number of Georgia stations as well as several members of our club. I have talked to Guy k4gtm, Lyndy nd4xe, Dave KI4ROL, Ralph w4req and a few other people but haven't done much more than make sure it seems to work, sound good and is set up right.

It does sound good. Computer originated audio sounds as good as RF originated audio.

I do have complete remote computer access to the station so I plan to leave it up and running as long as I can monitor it and control it.

Please monitor it as well as much as you can and welcome people that connect by the internet. Also please let me know what you think of it and any problems you discover so I can look into them right away.

And above all, please use and enjoy this great new capability the Coastal Amateur Radio Club now has available to it's members and the HAM community at large.

I look forward to your feedback.

Jerry Perlman

Search Echolink stations for w4sga-w4sga

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

need help with getting the signalink usb to do DTMF, what's the secret? email me or connect after 3PM to 383875