Icom D-Star Terminal and AccessPoint Modes


If you own an Icom  radio that supports Terminal and AccessPoint features (currently, the ID-51A Plus2 or the ID-4100A), the following may be of interest to you.

 Terminal and AccessPoint modes only work using ICOM Callsign Routing. This means when you connect to another gateway via you radio’s Terminal mode or AccessPoint mode over the internet, you will be heard there, but users who want to reply will need to know how to use Callsign Routing and capture your callsign (usually by pressing the radio’s Callsign Capture button while you are still transmitting).  If they don’t do that, you will not hear their reply.  The same applies to when you want to reply to a callsign routed call.
This means Terminal and AccessPoint features do not support linked connections to reflectors.  REPEAT:  The new Terminal and AccessPoint modes do not support linking to REF or any other reflectors.  They…

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Throw Back Thursday

This is taken from the CARF (now known as RAC) Repeater Directory from 1990.  You will notice tones were not in use back then.


The following link will give the full Canadian Listings.


My thanks to VE3IPS for supplying the information.


CounterPoise Directionality with Compromise Antennas


Many compromise antennas are the 6 to 12 foot variety. The Buddistick, SuperAntenna MP1, Pac-12, and a Chameleon (it has various variants) all offer a short antenna with multi band capability.

The key to these antennas is to have an elevated counterpoise. I have done several Field Strength Readings in the field and in a controlled location to try to understand if there is any directionality to its placement.

YES I have found that there is!

Point it towards the station you are trying to work. There is noticeable improvement in the transmit signal that it would be worth the effort to locate the counterpoise accordingly.

I dont think I am seeing much in the way of reception of signals.

A gain of 3 db is the equivalent of doubling or reducing by half your power.


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“It’s not real Ham Radio!” by Chris G7DDN

(This a a bit of a long read, but it opens up a lot of questions where this hobby is going these days.  Comments are open on this – what’s your opinion?)

A Pioneering Background

I was musing recently on the wonderful history of Amateur Radio, from the early pioneers with spark transmitters and the race to get the first signals across the Atlantic, up to the Microwave enthusiasts who developed the way forward for space communications and satellite technology (and, whisper this, mobile phone technology!) Continue reading

Yaesu FT-891 HF Mobile Current Drain and life as a Portable operator


You can wait forever to have the Yaesu engineers design a replacement radio for the FT-817**. It turns out they were too busy working on the brilliant FT-891 radio that has become my replacement for the FT-817 (I am still keeping my 15 year old radio). Yaesu sold a ton of 817s, 857s, and 897s to many hams that used it for mobile and qrp activity.

Why the 891 you ask?

At $600 USD its a steal. The new DSP chips make it a wonder to behold and fix all the DSP issues the previous models had. Add in the speech compressor, scope watch and a sensitive receiver at that price and there is no question why they were sold out by christmas time pending another production run. Thanks to my friends at HRO in finding me a radio in time for my 6Y5 dxpedition.

Sure there is no built…

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Digital Voice Hotspot Frequency Band Plan


Please not the band plan guidelines for digital hotspots as there has been interference issues of late.

The following frequencies are being used in Canada and US for DV Simplex (Hotspots).

Band     Frequency 

2 m     145.670 MHz 

2 m     145.750 MHz 

2 m     145.790 MHz     

70 cm 433.300 MHz     

70 cm 434.400 MHz     

70 cm 445.800 MHz     

70 cm 446.500 MHz     

The suggested Canada  bandplan has designated these frequencies for Digital use:

2 m     144.300 – 144.500

        144.900 – 145.100 (Packet 144.970-145.090)

        145.590 – 145.790

        147.435 – 147.585 (Simplex)

70 cm   433.000 – 434.800

        445.800 – 445.975

        446.500 – 446.975

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