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April 25, 2017, 06:24:24 PM
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CAP Talk  |  Operations  |  Tools of the trade  |  Topic: Radio Compliance, Radio Gear, Approval
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Elkland
Newbie

Posts: 4
Unit: NER-PA-507

« on: April 18, 2017, 12:57:20 PM »

Hello all. Looking into getting a portable for our squadrons use. The Motorola Astro Saber seems to be the best route to go. Once the radio is purchased and programmed to CAP standards, do we have to go to Wing to get it approved for use? Also, the HT1250 and CDM-1250 series are marked as non-compliant. Any idea why they are not compliant? They would be really nice for CAP use.

More questions. I was told we were going to be sent a repeater to cover our area. Just wondering if CAP will choose a spot and say we are putting it here even if it a horrible spot. Or would they ask my squadron, as me being a Ham radio operator and knowing where all the good spots are, and put it where I would suggest. What size tower would they install. 10 foot pole or a 300 foot self supporting.
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Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award
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Posts: 27,250

« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2017, 01:08:39 PM »

Hello all. Looking into getting a portable for our squadrons use. The Motorola Astro Saber seems to be the best route to go. Once the radio is purchased and programmed to CAP standards, do we have to go to Wing to get it approved for use?

Assuming it's purchased with corporate funds, it will need to go into ORMS, and if you expect it to get encryption keys, probably
before it can be programmed, as CAP will not provide the keys to PORs.  Whether it needs a "station license" varies by wing.

More questions. I was told we were going to be sent a repeater to cover our area. Just wondering if CAP will choose a spot and say we are putting it here even if it a horrible spot. Or would they ask my squadron, as me being a Ham radio operator and knowing where all the good spots are, and put it where I would suggest. What size tower would they install. 10 foot pole or a 300 foot self supporting.

Repeater placement is a complex and political exercise, and won't likely include input from your squadron unless you happen to be POC for a Sprint tower.
It is most likley being planned for the roof of a large office building or on an EMS or cell tower in your area.

Repeaters are generally managed by the Wing DC staff without input from the local units.

Your Unit or Group's Commo can provide or ascertain this information for you on both subjects.
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"Effort" does not equal "results".
The contents of this post are Copyright 2017 by eclipse. All rights are reserved. Specific permission is given to quote this post here on CAP-Talk only.

chuckmilam
Recruit

Posts: 21
Unit: GLR-KY-216

« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2017, 01:11:16 PM »

To answer the "why are they not compliant" question, here's a quote from the CAP National Technology Center Equipment Compliance Reports web page (emphasis added by me):

"Please Note: The equipment in these lists have been evaluated by comparing the manufacturer's published specifications with the published requirements of the NTIA in Chapter 5 of the "Manual of Regulations and Procedures for Federal Radio Frequeny Management" (Redbook)."
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SarDragon
Global Moderator

Posts: 9,731
Unit: NAVAIRPAC

« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2017, 01:24:13 PM »

To add on to Eclipse's answer, repeater placement is very carefully researched beforehand. There are height, power, and range considerations.

A site survey must be made, and this is frequently the most expensive part of the installation, other than the actual repeater. The last one CAWG did was in excess of $1500. (This was a major factor nationwide in the narrow band update with respect to the transmitter frequencies. Change the freq - get a site survey.)
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Dave Bowles
Maj, CAP
AT1, USN Retired
Mitchell Award (unnumbered)
C/WO, CAP, Ret
Elkland
Newbie

Posts: 4
Unit: NER-PA-507

« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2017, 02:18:34 PM »

I have 2 possible sites that a repeater could be placed. One site would cover well but a tower will need to be installed. The second site is on top of a 911 tower on the big hill. We had a VHF Ham repeater on it and had good coverage to portables county wide. But with the county's tower, you gotta be cleared in 100 ways and have permission from 20 people to even think of going in. Then if the repeater was to ever malfunction, CAP might as well abandoned it in there. Our VHF ham repeater was on that tower but it had broke few months back and we have no way of accessing it to get it back on the air. Haven't really had good connections with the EMA here.
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Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award
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Posts: 27,250

« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2017, 02:26:45 PM »

Both of the above would likely be non-starters.

Also, your preferential coverage area might not fit the wing's plan.
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"Effort" does not equal "results".
The contents of this post are Copyright 2017 by eclipse. All rights are reserved. Specific permission is given to quote this post here on CAP-Talk only.

Elkland
Newbie

Posts: 4
Unit: NER-PA-507

« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2017, 02:37:11 PM »

We have 4 repeater surrounding us to the north, east, south, and west. The location on the 911 tower would give us the best coverage to the areas the other 4 repeater's don't cover. I live on a hill and have a hard time hitting any of them so coverage is about none here. Terrain is very hilly here. I feel it would be best at least let Wing have my comments. Hate to have them put a repeater up and find out we can't even use it for anything. We'll just be playing as it goes for now.
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Spaceman3750
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 2,556

« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2017, 02:58:02 PM »

Your group comm officer would be the place to start.

http://gp6.pawg.cap.gov/group-staff
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"I always wondered why somebody doesn't do something about that. Then I realized I was somebody." - Lily Tomlin
"I'm sorry sir, which tab were we on?"

The moment any commander or staff member considers themselves a gatekeeper, instead of a facilitator, they have failed at their job.
I can't fix all of CAP's problems, but I can lead from the bottom by building my squadron as a center of excellence to serve as an example of what every unit can be.
CAP604
Recruit

Posts: 5

« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2017, 03:17:31 PM »

Just curious if you have ever read the 100- series of CAP regs or even discussed this with Higher, be it Group or Wing?  The answers to your questions are actually all there, including this one:

6.10.1. Except for tactical repeaters operated to support a particular mission or CAP activity (see paragraph 8.4.), fixed repeaters will not be placed into service, moved, modified (such as changing antenna, height, etc.), or transferred to another wing without prior approval by the National Repeater Coordination Group and subsequent amendment of the TA by CAP-USAF. Wings will submit all requests for new repeaters or changes and modifications to existing fixed repeaters via the on-line Repeater Application and Review System in the Communications section of eServices.

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etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 544

« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2017, 05:28:01 PM »


 I was told we were going to be sent a repeater to cover our area. Just wondering if CAP will choose a spot and say we are putting it here even if it a horrible spot. Or would they ask my squadron, as me being a Ham radio operator and knowing where all the good spots are, and put it where I would suggest. What size tower would they install. 10 foot pole or a 300 foot self supporting.

I'll relay what so many others have told me when I start asking questions like this:

"All these type decisions are made above your grade level."  ;)
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SarDragon
Global Moderator

Posts: 9,731
Unit: NAVAIRPAC

« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2017, 05:46:38 PM »

Way above.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

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Dave Bowles
Maj, CAP
AT1, USN Retired
Mitchell Award (unnumbered)
C/WO, CAP, Ret
Elkland
Newbie

Posts: 4
Unit: NER-PA-507

« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2017, 07:39:37 PM »

Just curious if you have ever read the 100- series of CAP regs or even discussed this with Higher, be it Group or Wing?  The answers to your questions are actually all there, including this one:

6.10.1. Except for tactical repeaters operated to support a particular mission or CAP activity (see paragraph 8.4.), fixed repeaters will not be placed into service, moved, modified (such as changing antenna, height, etc.), or transferred to another wing without prior approval by the National Repeater Coordination Group and subsequent amendment of the TA by CAP-USAF. Wings will submit all requests for new repeaters or changes and modifications to existing fixed repeaters via the on-line Repeater Application and Review System in the Communications section of eServices.

I have read over the 100- series. You would be correct. It would be best for me to contact the group or wing about it. Thanks
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CAP604
Recruit

Posts: 5

« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2017, 03:09:27 PM »

Happy to help, and stick with it... Comms is a very valuable capability for CAP
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radioguy
Recruit

Posts: 20
Unit: MER-NC-019

« Reply #13 on: April 19, 2017, 04:30:08 PM »

Hello all. Looking into getting a portable for our squadrons use.


Before you purchase any radio equipment for squadron use, suggest that you check with your Wing or Group comm folks.  Many Wings have equipment on hand and available for assignment.

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SarDragon
Global Moderator

Posts: 9,731
Unit: NAVAIRPAC

« Reply #14 on: April 19, 2017, 07:38:57 PM »

Back to the repeater Q.

The repeaters in use by CAP are heavy duty rack mount units. The unit includes the actual repeater transceiver, the duplexer cans, a substantial surge protector, and in some cases, a UPS. This has a several thousand dollar cost. Then add on the antenna, a TNC, a site survey, and power line installation.

If you want one installed, who is going to pay for it? Start-up costs will run close to $10,000, and then there's the monthly power bill. This is not a trivial request.
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Dave Bowles
Maj, CAP
AT1, USN Retired
Mitchell Award (unnumbered)
C/WO, CAP, Ret
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CAP Talk  |  Operations  |  Tools of the trade  |  Topic: Radio Compliance, Radio Gear, Approval
 


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