On Sunday Morning 29th April 2012 our main tower suffered massive damage in the high winds.
At 5.22 am the lower part of the latice tower folded which caused the whole tower to fall into a nearby tree.
Amazingly not a single antenna or feeder was damaged and even the wind turbine and blades are in perfect working order.
In order to keep all of our repeaters on the air we have moved GB3WE’s folded dipole onto our small wind turbine mast. This mast holds the GB3WB 4-Stack already, so its coverage is unaffected.
To keep GB7WB on air we have had to temporarily fit a colinear to the very short remains of the damaged tower, so it is practically at ground level. Obviously coverage will be well reduced, but at least GB7WB is still on the air.
It was a very big and dangerous job to get the whole tower and turbine out of the tree. But to make the area as safe as possible as quickly as possible we have worked on the site more or less night and day for three days in some terrible weather conditions.
Here are a selection of photos of the damaged tower.
GB7WB Fan Control Thermostat Modified & Fitted.
The thermostat we had only had a ‘normally-closed’ contact and we needed a ‘normally-open’ contact to put the 24v fans on when ever the repeaters got too hot.
With three FX5000 repeaters stacked on top of each other, with their six combined crystal ovens and three power amplifiers etc you would be surprised just how hot they get!
A grub-screw was removed which was fitted to provide a rest for the center contact of the bi-metalic strip. A small screw with a solder-tag and wire was used to replace the grub-screw and the wire was attached to the spare solder post.
Now we have a single-pole, double-throw set of contacts and the fan switches on when the temperature rises.
The Weston Repater Group recently completed a new dual-mode D-Star GMSK ircDDB & FM repeater for Plymouth. GB3IE is now on test in Plymouth, and will hopefully be in full dual-mode service very soon when its new NoV arrives.
GB7WB & GB3WB Both Using DV-RPTR Modems For GMSK D-Star.
Both of our D-Star repeaters have now moved over to DV-RPTR modems and are controlled by Jonathan Naylor’s latest beta software.
Get more details of the DV-RPTR modems here: http://www.dvrptr.de/
Find out about Jonathan’s G4KLX repeater software here: http://db0fhn.efi.fh-nuernberg.de/~g4klx/ Both repeaters are operating better than they ever have and don’t suffer from any problems.