I’ve removed all of the amateur radio equipment from Schweitzer Mountain for maintenance. My hope is that I’ll only have it offline for a week.
Unfortunately the 145.230 transmitter has died. I measured no power out although I could hear that the exciter is working. Tonight I’ll dig into that to learn what is wrong there. Before it failed it did seem to get noisy and cause desense, so I won’t be surprised if I find the problem to be a failed PA transistor. However, there isn’t a smell like I would expect if the thing had failed under power, so we’ll see.
The work I do will completely remove the RLC-3 controller. While that continues to perform flawlessly, it is 1990’s technology that is fairly limited. Instead the UHF and VHF radios will be connected directly to the computer and will become independent app_rpt nodes. This will give us a lot more capability for local use. Of course it will also greatly improve the use of those radios as nodes on STARnet as well as the AllStarLink.
Anyone wishing to participate in this work, or just wanting to see the gear before it goes back up, should contact me. You’re welcome to come by the house and take a look and help twist wires.