January Club Meeting Round-Up & Project Reveal!

We had a great meeting tonight! Thanks to the 21 people that made it out tonight. Sharon Whitehill, and two other representatives from the Nixa Community Foundation came out to the meeting to award us our grant for $1950.00 for the upcoming repeater projects. Watch for the positive press in the Nixa Newspaper as well as the Christian County Headliner and the Nixa Xpress.

James Adkins, KB0NHX, and Kent Doucey, N0IRM, accepted the grant check and thanked the foundation for the grant and their past and continued support of the club and our efforts to improve emergency communications in the Ozarks.

Afterwards, we unveiled the club's new project for 2012. The project is a combined effort from the Nixa Amateur Radio Club, the Southwest Amateur Radio Group in Newton County, and the Missouri Highway Patrol Amateur Radio Club, KM0HP. We will be building a 3-repeater linked system to cover Southwest Missouri. All areas of the 18-county Region D are will have radio coverage. The repeaters will be linked 100% of the time by RF and open to ALL amateurs for use of every day communications, for special events, or during disasters as needed.

The K0NXA Springfield repeater will be on 147.015+, PL 162.2 Hz and will be located on the East County tower site about 5 miles East of Springfield on Chestnut Expressway. The antenna will be at 400' above ground level, and will consist of a Daniel's MT-2 repeater with a 75a Duracomm power supply and 300-Watt Crescend amplifier. The TX RX duplexers are on order, and we need to raise approximately $1600 to pay for the antenna installation, purchase coax and jumpers, and a rack mount shelf for the power supply. The repeater is located in the hardened Greene County TRS building and has battery and generator backup capable of running the equipment for several weeks. Special thanks to the Greene County TRS, Mercury Towers, TA Total High-Speed Wireless, the Yukon Amateur Radio Association, TX RX, and SCOM controllers, and Andrew for their contributions to this repeater site.

*** Proposed Coverage Map for the 147.015 Repeater ***

The 147.015 & 145.390 repeaters will link to the club's new K0NXA 442.150+ Repeater, PL 162.2 Hz, to be located in Crane, MO high atop one of the Crane city water towers.
The repeater is a Motorola Micor, 125-Watt repeater. The Andrew DB-420 antenna will be mounted at 200 feet AGL. The repeater will be located in the hardened, climate controlled Verizon wireless building, and will have battery and generator backup for ultimate reliability. Should this site fail, the backup linking repeater will be the 442.275 repeater on Cox South Hospital, which also has generator backup power. We want to give a special thanks to Verizon Wireless, the City of Crane, and Andrew Corporation for their contributions to this site. For this site, we need $300 to purchase the IRLP computer and interface, $300 to purchase the EchoLink computer and interface, and $75 to purchase interface cables and connectors.

*** Proposed Coverage Map for the 442.150 Repeater ***

The last piece of the puzzle is the KM0HP 145.390- repeater, PL 91.5 Hz. The repeater is sponsored by the Missouri Highway Patrol Amateur Radio Club and the Southwest Amateur Radio Group in Neosho. The repeater is a 110-Watt GE Master III repeater with SCOM 7330 controller and TX RX duplexers. The DB-224 antenna will be mounted at 300 feet AGL. The repeater will be located in the Missouri Highway Patrol's hardened concrete aggregate building and will have battery and generator backup power, capable of running the site for several weeks. Again, this repeater will link full time to the Granby 442.150 repeater. The only expense left for this site is to purchase a UHF link radio for $325.00. Special thanks to Andrew Corporation, TX RX and Midwest Mobile Radio Service (Motorola Radio Shop) in St. Joseph, MO for their contributions to this repeater.

*** Proposed Coverage Map for the 145.390 Repeater ***

Below is a combined coverage map for the entire system when completed - Green indicates 147.015 coverage, Red indicates 442.150 coverage, and Blue indicates 145.390 coverage.

In addition to the 3 linked repeaters, the system will also have an IRLP node and an EchoLink node for VoIP and linking use. And, a Raytheon JPS NXU-2A commercial VoIP link will be online, allowing SEMA and other public service agency hams to use existing dispatch consoles and mobile command centers equipped with such devices to link into the system if amateur equipment is not available, or if they are not in range of the linked repeater system, such as an emergency NCS at the SEMA radio room in Jefferson City, MO.

We are looking for your help to raise the remaining $2500 to $3000 to complete the project and get all 3 repeaters on the air. With the coax and antennas arriving by the end of February, it will soon be time to finish the projects. Club member Larry Grinstead, WA0JZK, will be putting together a brochure for us to take around to local businesses and seek the necessary donations to complete the project. Remember, we are a 501(c)3, and all donations are 100% tax deductible! As a club, this is "our" project, and we want everyone to participate so that they feel like they can take ownership in the system, and be proud to help provide such a system to the region. This will not only be good for everyone in our club, but all amateurs in Southwest Missouri. We are asking everyone to get involved by asking for donations from business people you know,and even those you don't know, or by writing grants to fund the project. Dean Gaines, KC0SQD-SK, was one of the best. Several years ago, he raised hundreds of dollars going into numerous businesses around town. Every business would make a donation, anywhere from $25 to $100 and more! Any amount helps!!

A system like this will be perfect for the annual MS-150 bike ride so that people all along the route can communicate back and forth between Joplin and Springfield. Mobile and stationary severe weather spotters and all ARES & RACES groups will also be welcome to use the system as needed.

We will be providing updates each month at the club meeting, so if you want to know how the system is progressing, make sure to come out! Our next meeting is Saturday, February 11, 2012, at 6:00 p.m. at the Nixa Fire Department General HQ, located at 301 S. Nicholas Rd in Nixa, MO.