Category Archives: HAM Radio

Articles that pertain to HAM Radio such as HF operation, contests, new equipment, etc.

GD-77 Cedar Rapids DMR Codeplug

Updated May 23, 2018

Anyone operating a DMR GD77 radio in Cedar Rapids or Iowa City may find the following codeplug handy.

This codeplug is based on the very hard work of the Iowa DMR Group.  I have attempted to duplicate the MD380 codeplug for the GD-77

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Illinois DMR Codeplug for MD380

Hi folks, I recently took a trip to Illinois and needed an MD380 codeplug for the trip.

I used as the foundation the code plug available at the Chicago DMR group homepage: http://chicagoland-cc.org/

Then I modified the codeplug to replace the WI talkgroup with Iowa 3119 on all zones.

You can download my modified codeplug here: MD380 030317 All

Thanks to chicagoland control center (DMR group) for their awesome codeplug.

Monitoring Outdoor Temperature with RTL-SDR

If you’re like me you’re interested in knowing the outdoor temperature.  If you’re also like me, the prospect of spending $$$ for a computer weather station doesn’t sound too appealing.  Once again, the wonderful $30 RTL-SDR dongle to the rescue!  In today’s blog post I will show you how you can use the RTL-SDR to intercept the wireless signals sent from your neighbors outdoor weather stations, and how to use these to know the weather around your home.

First, you will need an RTL-SDR dongle, connected to an antenna.  I am presently using my TV antenna to feed my RTL-SDR dongle, which is connected to my VMWare server and assigned to a virtual machine.

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SDR Based Flight Tracking

I recently had the need to track the arrival of a flight into the airport near my house.  Of course, I could use any of the online services available for this, but being a HAM radio operator, I wanted to track this data myself.  I discovered that with a $30 RTL-SDR dongle, this can easily be done.

First, I built a co-linear antenna for this.  This is a simple antenna made by connecting stub pieces of coax together.  I opted for a 4 element co-linear which is not the best configuration.  I will at some time build an 8 element and place it within a PVC pipe.  This is just a proof of concept.

Using the plans here https://www.balarad.net/ I made a 4 element antenna.

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