Located at Grand Grammont, Pain Pot, in the commune of Peyrat le Chateau, East of the Haute Vienne, departement 87, is a hilltop site at 758 metres, surmounted by a 30 Metre Radio Tower.
Whilst the tower is used by professional services, it is fortunate that this has become to home to “Virginie” the VHF 145 MHz repeater running on Channel R2 145.650 Mhz (-600 KHz shift and 88Hz CTCSS) for the Limousin Region.
“Virginie” is our name for the repeater, as the voice used in the repeater control software, SVXLink, developed by Tobias SM0SVX.
The radios used in the repeater are Motorola GM350 Transceivers. The transmitter of the pair develops 8 watts, but its output then drives an amplifier that sends around 100 Watts to the antenna after passing through the transmit section of the 6 duplexer cans. The receiver is enhanced by a Microwave Modules pre-amplifier that gives an extra 12 db of gain. The colinear antenna is mounted on the summit of the tower and fed by high quality heliax. Its position gives a 360 degree radiation pattern over several departements.
SVXLink can give many options to configure the software. This installation on the VHF Repeater is on a Raspberry PI Model B+ using an 8GB Micro SD Card. It has Echolink operating as standard, with a side option of Metar Information on several local airports and the two major airports in Paris.
With the callsign F5ZJE, “Veronique” the 50 MHz repeater is now operational. Transmit frequency is 51.870 MHz with the receiver on 51.270 MHz. With a four cylinder duplexer, the antenna is a 1/4 wave ground plane, which is mounted near the summit of the same tower. The transceivers are Motorola Maratrac mobile transceivers, the transmitter of which generates around 55 watts. This repeater also has a Raspberry PI B+ and SVXLink at its heart. A CTCSS of 88 Hz is required to access the repeater.
Finally alongside its VHF partners will sit the HF Transmitter of the F1ZCF 29MHz HF Repeater Named “Vanessa”. Because of the frequency range, the receiver of this repeater needs to be sited elsewhere but as the control of the repeater will also be managed by SVXLink and a Raspberry PI B+, there will be no need for a hard-wire or UHF link between them. SVXLink has the added ability provided by a network link or relaying audio through a TCP port allocated for this purpose. “Vanessa’s” receiver site is still to be finalised, but due to the nature of 29 MHz it is not necessary to be close.
Now operational is “Vera” “Virginie’s” little sister, an additional receiver to the VHF repeater to fill in black spots with SVXLink’s sister package RemoteTrx. “Vera” is situated at Grelette in the south of the Haute Vienne, and connected to “Virginie” by our own network.
“Virginie” has the capacity to interpret the stronger of the two receivers, “Vera” or her own. This makes it easier for the users to the south and west of the repeater to communicate more easily. There is a certain amount of hysteresis on the system so there is no flutter between the receivers.
“Valerie” is under construction as a replacement UHF repeater with VHF command simplex. This repeater will replace the existing UHF repeater at St Junien (87) that currently uses NHRC 3+ Logic. Veronique will also be connected to the server by SVXLink.
“Violette” is a further VHF repeater awaiting placement when full authorisation is given to install it. This repeater will have no EchoLink, but will have connection to the SVXLink server. Full details will be disclosed when the go ahead has been given.
Chris F5VMR – G4NAB
Club Radio and Scientific of the Haute Vienne – F8KFZ
Version Français http://wp.me/p5ObbB-8