News

The Mid Cornwall Beacon and Repeater Group

Annual General Meeting (A.G.M.)
At a recent meeting of the committee, it has been decided not to proceed with a A.G.M. for this year, due to the Covid 19 virus pandemic and postpone the meeting until October 2022.

Beacon News – GB3MCB Beacons
During the recent past, a second antenna beaming towards the continent has been added to the 2mtr beacon, the other beacons continue to operate as normal, with the ocasional “tweak's” required.

We have long wanted to replace the 23cms beacon, I (Roger G4OCO) have programed an Ardunioto key a simple transmitter, using the A1A mode of keying. I just need a suitable 5/10 watt transmitter to complete the project. If you have one, or know of anybody who can supply such a unit, please contact myself if you can help.

Repeater News – GB3NC & GB3HB Repeaters
Units continue to perform well, with GB3NC now on a new antenna that was installed in the summer. The signal reports so far indicate a similar coverage area that the previous Hustler G7 provided.

The EchoLink side of repeater has been complety rebuilt using a Raspberry Pi 3, again using part of the SV0SVX SVX software suite, following an SD card issue in the original Raspberry Pi 2.

GB3HB being a dual mode repeater is now “Fusion” capable, with linking provided by M1AEG, thank you Andrew.

Televsion News – GB3NQ Television Repeater
The repeater has continued to evolve, additional inputs have been added using 146 Mhz and 437 Mhz, with of course its original input on 1249 Mhz, Digital using the DVBS standard 2 MS/S F.E.C. ½.

It has been completely rebuilt using the Raspberry Pi Single Board Computer (S.B.C.), and British Amateur Radio Club (B.A.T.C.) “Ryde” receivers. This repeater is not 24 hours, but operates 10am to 10 pm with streaming on the internet courtesy of G8LCE.

A substantial bursary has been received by the group, granted from the British Amateur Radio Clubof £558.00, to cover the cost of upgrades and the enhanced capabilities.

The MCBARG Committee
President: Bryan Pearce G8GOR
Chair: Lisa Willis 2E0PXI
Deputy Chairman: Keith Holland, G3MCD
Secretary: John Newman, G0VDU
Treasurer: Keith Holland, G3MCD
Deputy Treasurer: Mike Bundy, G4WVD
Beacon keeper: Nick Camp, G7KFQ
Repeater Keeper & NoV holder: (GB3NC & GB3HB) Mike Bundy, G4WVD
Repeater Keeper & NoV holder: (GB3NQ) Kevin Francks M0BFB
Echolink & Publicity: Roger Gregory, G4OCO
Website: John Newman, G0VDU
St Austell ATC: Stephen Thompson, G8TNA
Maurice Richards, G3WKF
Keith Boney, G0KTD
John Brooks, M0HJO
Luke Penny, M6YEN
Peter Taylor G8BCG
Viv Watson G7AWG

Club Reps:
Rich Willis, 2E0TGK (Cornwall Radio Amateur Club)
Chris Ring, M6WIW (Poldhu Club)
Don Roomes, G0RQL (Holsworthy Club)
Bryan Pearce, G8GOR, (Newquay Club)

Cornwall Search and Rescue Team Contact:
Phil Matthews, M0PHM

Beacon and Repeater Details:

website: www.gb3nc.org.uk

The group currently operates and maintains the following beacons and repeaters at a site andmast on Hensbarrow Downs, St Austell. Nat.Grid Ref: SW990574 QRA locator IO70 OJ

Beacon frequencies - all have the call sign GB3MCB
6m - 50.005MHz and 50.443MHz 4m – 70.025 MHz
2m – 144.469 MHz 70cms – 432.470 MHz
23cms – 1296.860 MHz 3cm – 10,368.980MHz

Repeaters:

GB3NC – FM Output 145.725 MHz Input 145.125 MHz
(access with 77 Hz CTCSS or 1750Hz tone burst plus 5 secs of audio)
Echolink Node 282184


GB3HB - C4FM & FM Output 433.375 MHz Input 434.975 MHz
FM in/out access with 77 Hz CCTS or 1750 Hz toneburst. C4FM in/out 77 Hz with linking provided by M1AEG.

Television Repeater

GB3NQ - Output 1316 MHz D.V.B.S. 2 MS's FEC ½. Inputs 1249 MHz, 437 MHz and 146.5 MHz Digital.

And Finally
Subscriptions are now due, so please include the group on your Christmas list to pay. Stay safe and enjoy the festivities of the season.

73
Mid Cornwall Beacon and Repeater Group Team

The Mid Cornwall Beacon and Repeater Group - July 2020


A message from the Treasurer & Temp.Chair,  Keith Holland , G3MCD  
As all club meetings and rallies have been cancelled,  we haven’t been able to meet any of our members and supporters this year or visit any of the local clubs.

With all the problems over the past few months we would like to say “Thank you” to those of you  who have remembered the Repeater Group and sent your membership payments via Paypal.

The main event of the year when we usually meet most of our supporters face-to-face is  the CRAC Rally in Truro every July.   I know most of you use this as a reminder to come to our stand and hand over some of your hard earned dosh to help with our electricity bills and on-going maintenance costs.

It is a pity that we won’t see you this year, but look out for the heartfelt plea in this newsletter from John, G0VDU our Secretary, to pay your subs by other means this year.

Local Nets
As well as the round Cornwall call-in after the RSGB News on Sundays,  we have been running a net on Mondays at 7pm on GB3NC just to catch up with members and check that all is OK

GB3NC Antenna Replacement
As lockdown has eased it has allowed us to get back to some much needed maintenance.

The main antenna for the GB3NC repeater suffered a lot of damage in the winter storms and had to be replaced with a new Hustler G7.  Below left shows the damaged antenna leaning over and below right shows Nick G7KFQ at the top of the mast  erecting the new Hustler antenna. The photo was taken by Luke M6YEN who was up there with him. In the background is one of the ATV lantern antennas.

ATV and DATV News

Our thanks to Paul, G6MNJ and Keith, G0KTD for all their ongoing work on the GB3NQ DATV repeater.

It suffered some damaged in a storm in early July,  but is now operational again.

It currently runs analogue from 10am to 12 noon and then a 15 minute DATV  digital slide show, followed by a 15 minute analogue slide show starting every hour on the hour until 10pm.

Accessing it by ATV or DATV on 1249MHz or 437MHz overrides the slide show.

The photo above shows Keith, G0KTD with the new GB3NQ DATV repeater on the bench to the right. An enormous amount of work has been done during lockdown to make the DATV pictures receivable on simple Sat Boxes and other devices costing less than £45.

The picture below shows the DATV picture being received on a Satlink WS6906 using a simple “ Panetone Tin” antenna on a hedge pointing towards Hensbarrow!!

The Satlink device is a digital receiver and is normally used to align satellite dishes.  It has a three and a half inch screen,  which shows the satellite being received. The basic coverage of the receiver is 950 to 2150MHz and the image is the GB3NQ testcard on 1316MHz.

Repeater News

The  main GB3NC antenna which had become damaged during the winter months and  was replaced with a new Hustler G7 on 24th June by Nick, G7KFQ and Luke, M6YEN.

The GB3HB  (70cms) repeater was switched off in early June and one of its antennas was being used as a temporary antenna for GB3NC until the repair work could be done.

Luke took his mobile phone up the mast and relayed some interesting live pictures of the work being carried out  via the new MCBARG Facebook page.

There were some unique live pictures of the old antenna being brought down the mast which were also relayed on our new Facebook page.  The photo below right shows the old 18 foot antenna being brought down – not an easy job !

When the new antenna was installed and working most people reported an increase in signal strength of about 2 “S” points all over Cornwall.

The photo below shows  Lisa, 2E0PXI adding strength to the new Hustler G7 by fibre glassing all the joints, in her back garden   before it went to Hensbarrow to replace the damaged G7.

 

The old Hustler G7 antenna being lowered carefully down the outside of the main mast.

Beacon News

Repair work has been done on the 23cm beacon plate antenna and support pole which was suffering from a bad fracture (it is amazing what damage wind and salt air can do – see the photo of the fracture on the 2 inch diameter support pole ).

The photo above shows the tremendous strength of wind and weather.  The sharp-eyed lads spotted this large fracture in the 2” diameter pole supporting the 23cm beacon antenna, when they were doing a routine inspection.
It was quickly replaced. Well done lads – that could have given someone a nasty headache!

The 70cm beacon failed during lockdown and is currently off the air awaiting a few components and repair time.  We hope to have it up and running again within the next four weeks,  depending on component lead times.
All other beacons are working correctly after this week’s site work.

The 2m beacon antenna (3 element yagi) was replaced because it was showing a high SWR and causing some cross mod. “extra transmissions” on 2m.

Our new Facebook page

Click on link above

Lisa, 2E0PXI, our vice chair, at the repeater site looking at live streaming of our Facebook page on her phone.

The live stream was video being sent by her son Luke, M6YEN from his phone at the top of the mast!

The picture on the phone below shows Luke adjusting the 23cm flatplate beacon antenna after repair and repositioning.

Major Donation
A big “Thank you”  to the Newquay Club for a £500 donation voted for at their AGM in February 2020.  (That will be 60% of our electricity bill this year).

Talks to clubs
At the moment we are not giving any talks to clubs, but we hope to resume this facility when the current crisis is over.

“CORONA” Net  on GB3NC on Mondays at 7pm

“CORONA” stands for  “Collection Of Radio Operating NC Amateurs”

A net will be held on Mondays at 7pm on GB3NC for a bit of light hearted banter during the lockdown period.  It will be conducted by Roger, G4OCO,  or if he is working, by Keith, G3MCD.

Items for Sale 

See our website for details.  This will be updated regularly as the group is given items to sell.

Teamwork at the Repeater site

A message from John, G0VDU, Group Secretary

Welcome to the MCBARG Supporters Group.

Due to Covid 19 we have not been able to meet face to face at the usual Radio Rallies, swap notes and thank our membership for the support  they give us each year.

We would normally collect Subs and donations that help us to maintain the Repeater Group and its services.

You can help by sending your usual subscription of £15.00 with voting rights or a donation using PayPal or a cheque made out to the MCBARG via the secretary or if you wish a bank transfer is acceptable at Lloyds Bank Sort code 30-98-98 account number 00879621.

However you choose, to contribute, please let us know who sent it, with your email address to enable us to update our records and keep you in touch with our News Sheets & events.

Please keep safe- Enjoy your Radio

The Mid-Cornwall Beacon and Repeater Group Team

 Thank  you and Stay Safe

Run by the Mid Cornwall Beacon and Repeater Group Input frequency 1249 MHZ – Output frequency 1316 MHz 437 Mhz digital DVBS – 2 Msym/see SR setting below.

VPID=256, APID=257, PMT PID=4095

GB3NQ has had a upgrade with three Ryde receivers 23cms 70cms 146.500

Datv Symbol Rates are set SR333 on 146.500,(1000,2000,FEC on all other bands), 2m RX installed and talkback on 144.750.

The new Logic is installed which will beacon for 4 minutes then go in stand by for 12 mins.

The repeater can be awakened at any time on a valid signal, from Analog TX 23Cms, or Digital TX on 70Cms DATV.

Please be patient on the Anolog Front anolog in anolog out. 23 Cms