Communications for VSECU Point to Point

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    Hi all,
    Let’s use this forum as a “brain dump” for ideas on how to handle the VSECU Point to Point race this August.


    For reference, this is the link to the race map from the initial email.

    That is a pretty significant course, probably not something we can cover with VHF simplex. Pat suggested to me in passing using HF simplex, which I think would work fantastic if everyone volunteering has an HF mobile/portable.

    How far north does the Cabot repeater reach? I vaguely remember a coverage map Chris (K1MHZ) made that showed it reached pretty far, but I don’t think it went past Hyde Park?


    In case the race isn’t canceled, just wanted to say; I just got an Icom 706 (not mkiig). It does all HF bands,6m and 144-146 mhz (European model). I’d be happy to bring it along if/when the race happens.
    Stay healthy and 73’s
    Max, KC1MBX


    Good to know we have another possible HF station, Max!
    Dillon, as I’ve discussed, I’m not sure how far north Cabot reaches, but I’m a little more concerned about how far west it shoots. If the weather’s nice (missed my mark there) I’ll go for a drive and map the coverage.


    I plan on driving the full century course tomorrow morning (4/4) if anyone wants to monitor the repeater. Ideally, we’ll have full coverage between Lincoln Peak, Cabot and Williamstown. I will also be monitoring 10 meter SSB mobile on 28.4 MHz.


    First test is promising!
    I drove the full century course late this morning. The good news is it looks like we’ll be able to use our repeater system for most of it. Williamstown covers well in downtown Montpelier, East Montpelier and VT-14 out towards Woodbury. Past there, coverage is shaky, but Cabot picks it up nicely through Hardwick and up rt 15 and 16 into the area just before Glover. That’s when coverage gets fairly spotty, but picks up again strongly in Barton, sort of near the solar field/Leroux Brothers Transmission. Coverage is strong through Irasburg, Albany and Craftsbury, and there are even some places here where the Williamstown machine picks back up! (I even had a P25 digital QSO with Chris (K1MHZ) on Williamstown with minimal packet loss.) While stationary in Irasburg (Bob’s Quick Stop, to be specific), I had no trouble reaching Cabot.
    By the time I got to Morrisville/Elmore area, Williamstown was full-quieting once again, and those on the repeater had no trouble copying me at all.

    In some of the weak spots, I had to use high power to reach the machines – which in my case is 110 watts. We may want to consider the use of cross-band repeaters. This will be important for mobile stations – if they drive through spotty areas while transmitting, the net control station in Montpelier may not catch the full message.

    I have yet to drive the other courses, but this first test was pretty promising. I just thought I’d give a synopsis of my findings today.

    Thanks to WS3RVO, KA1HQR, K1MHZ, KC1EKV and WA2LRE for their help during my adventure today!

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