SPARC New UHF Hub

 

No thanks to Stacey Green, a rogue local FAA employee, the SPARC UHF was dismantled and removed from its site in September, 2020. This took the entire SPARC repeater system off the air.

It took several emails and phone calls, and all was straightened out. SPARC had valid land use and power use from the FAA, and land lease from Sitnasuak. The building had been deeded to SPARC by the FAA years ago. The phone line had been rededicated and paid for by SPARC.

The power cable and switch was severed and dug out. The phone line was severed. The building was removed. All at the urging of Green.

However, now the entire site, building, etc. has had its legal status restored, and the original building is now safely stored by SPARC.

As the hub was down, the Newton site was cleaned up and arrangements made to replace the container up there with a new building. This smaller building was in storage at RAM.

After some palavering, it was decided the SMALLER RAM building would be a better fit for the HUB site, and the larger building would be deployed to Newton peak later in 2021.

The Yaesu repeater and phone patch were repaired and reinstalled in the new HUB building, solar panels, controllers, and numerous details were attended to. After some weeks, the HUB building was trucked out to the VOR access road, to the hub original site.

Trucking Hub

Copyright © 2021, Ramon Gandia, AL7X

TSR Trucks the building to Site 6/3/2021


Arriving on site, Rolland Trowbridge, KD8JOU, operates the fork lift and carefully takes it off the Truck. He then had to pick it from the Solar Panel side and place it in position.

Fork Lift Operating

Copyright © 2021, Ramon Gandia AL7X

Rolland operating the Fork Lift


The building is now in position, but just laying on the ground on small blocks. It was 10pm, so we locked it up and went home.

Building in Position

Copyright © 2021, Ramon Gandia AL7X

June 3, 2021 -- Building in Position


The next day, we went to the site and worked all day. Leveling, blocking, making sure lined up with sun, etc.

Blocked and Leveled

Copyright © 2021, Ramon Gandia AL7X

Blocked and Leveled in Position

On June 7, 2021, we took the antenna pipe mast to the hub site; It was cold, windy, drizzly and we decided not to do further work that day, other than taking notes and measurements.

On Tuesday, June 8, the work crew went out to the hub site.

Crew: Chris, Clara, Ramon.  Tony took the Picture

Copyright © 2021, Ramon Gandia AL7X

Chris Gandia, Clara Tootkaylok and Ramon Gandia AL7X
Not shown is Tony Gandia who took the picture


To make a long story short, we raised the antenna and hooked it up to the radio. The Hub Radio was connected to a battery and powered up. Solar chargers are NOT connected at this time, but good enough for 24 to 48 hours.

Pretty with Antenna

Copyright © 2021, Ramon Gandia AL7X

Hub Station: Finished on the Outside

Remaining is to hook up the batteries to the solar chargers and the radio.

I tested the hub. Had no problem accessing it on UHF with a handheld on low power from about 8 miles away. Seens to work ok.

BAD NEWS: I was not able to raise the Nome Downtown repeater. The Downtown unit is split in two sites. The transmitter is on top of the Church Cross, and that worked ok. The receiver site is on Emmon's KL0FP shop at east end. It did not come up. I tried to get a hold of Carl with no luck, and will try run him down in person tomorrow, Wednesday 6/9 about it.

I need to drive up to Anvil with my car and try hit the Skookum and Goldengage repeaters from there, to test them.

Newton was dismantled, and will be reinstalled later this summer. However, as a temporary measure, I can power it up on a spare antenna here at my house at the BASE of Newton. At least can be tested that way, although I am optimistic as it worked well last fall when I brought it down for new building.

 
 

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