31 votes
Accepted

Why do people say, "get a nickel," on repeaters?

"Getting a nickel" is a reference to how metered pay phones work (worked?). You'd put in some coins, make your call, and when the time you'd payed for expired, the phone operator would ...
webmarc's user avatar
  • 4,105
13 votes

Is there any legal recourse against unauthorized usage of a private repeater in the USA?

The short answer seems to be that yes, the FCC apparently does consider the repeater operator's rules as enforceable. They have in the recent past (e.g. 2013 and 2017) sent out official Warning ...
natevw - AF7TB's user avatar
12 votes
Accepted

Why can't I hear myself from a second radio when bouncing off a repeater?

You are experiencing what is commonly called desense (short for desensitization). The strong signal of your transmitter overloads your receiver making it unable to demodulate the much weaker, on-...
Glenn W9IQ's user avatar
  • 18.6k
12 votes
Accepted

What should I put on a QSL card for a repeater contact?

I never saw a standard in the last 25 years. I usually put something in the comment like 'using repeater xxx'. Where the xxx is the callsign of the repeater.
ON5MF Jurgen's user avatar
12 votes
Accepted

What are the regulation requirements for running a repeater?

The regulations for an amateur radio repeater are fairly minimal. To answer your specific questions: "Does one need a particular license?" Your license must permit transmissions on the repeater ...
WA9ZZZ's user avatar
  • 286
10 votes

How to clean up profanity on airwaves

I've heard --from reliable sources-- that about the only thing that can stop that is to make recordings that you can send to the FCC. Include well-thought-out documentation with callsigns, times and ...
Mike Waters's user avatar
  • 7,958
10 votes
Accepted

Why is a separate repeater required for digital modes? Why can't an analog repeater be used for digital modes?

There is a kind of repeater that can repeat any kind of transmission: it's called a linear translator. It's technically equivalent to an SSB receiver linked to an SSB transmitter. It works for any ...
Phil Frost - W8II's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

Why don't I hear the CTCSS tones when listening on the repeater input frequency?

Many radio manufacturers are aware that people don't want to hear CTCSS tones - so they put high-pass filters on both the output (speaker) and input (microphone). That eliminates the tone before it ...
user3486184's user avatar
  • 1,902
10 votes
Accepted

Why am I not hearing repeater identification more often?

(written assuming you and the repeater are in the USA) Also, repeaters (indeed, any station aside from telemetry) are only required to identify every 10 minutes during communication and at the end of ...
webmarc's user avatar
  • 4,105
9 votes
Accepted

From where do repeaters get their power supply?

You are correct that most repeaters that are on buildings or typical towers get their energy from the commercial grid. The repeaters that I own are all commercially powered. Repeaters that are ...
Glenn W9IQ's user avatar
  • 18.6k
9 votes

In-house repeater?

The simplest way of accomplishing your goal doesn't require a conventional and expensive repeater system. It's completely passive (no electronics needed). Put a Yagi on your roof pointed at the ...
Mike Waters's user avatar
  • 7,958
9 votes

What are the regulation requirements for running a repeater?

WA9ZZZ's answer missed the issue of control of the repeater. The repeater must be under control of one or more control operators, or under automatic control, at all times when the repeater is on. ...
rclocher3's user avatar
  • 9,192
9 votes

Beginner listening to a repeater - only hearing one station

It is presumed that you were receiving on the 2m band. It appears that you were listening in, using 'repeater reverse' mode. In other words, you were listening in on the repeater's input frequency ...
vu2nan's user avatar
  • 757
9 votes
Accepted

Talk Around vs Reverse

Talkaround: Transmitting and receiving on the repeater output frequency. Thus, you "talk around" the repeater directly with the other station. (Same as simplex). Both stations in a ...
WA9ZZZ's user avatar
  • 361
8 votes
Accepted

If repeaters share the same call sign are they "Connected"

I wouldn't assume that repeaters with the same call are connected. What the call sign denotes is that they're owned and operated by the same operator or club -- for instance, in my area, there are ...
Zeiss Ikon's user avatar
  • 4,097
7 votes
Accepted

Should I add call signs with /R suffix to the logbook?

FT8 decoding can use a technique called a priori (AP) whereby it uses naturally accumulating information for the purposes of increasing apparent sensitivity by about 4 dB. There is an increased chance ...
Glenn W9IQ's user avatar
  • 18.6k
7 votes
Accepted

How can I be sure I'm actually hitting the repeater?

The simple answer is to transmit on the repeater's input frequency, saying something like " < your callsign > testing" and listen for the repeater's courtesy beep (assuming there is one) on its ...
mike65535's user avatar
  • 1,035
7 votes
Accepted

Call sign ID for a "homebrew" or improvised repeater?

Are you up to buying a Raspberry Pi, two USB sound cards, some assorted transistors and such, and making your own interface cable? If so, you can run svxlink. It supports all sorts of fancy things ...
hobbs - KC2G's user avatar
  • 12.4k
7 votes
Accepted

How come wifi repeaters aren't just amplifiers?

This type of repeater is sometimes called a linear transponder, particularly when it is installed on amateur radio satellites (I don't know of other uses). There are several problems with using it in ...
Kevin Reid AG6YO's user avatar
  • 24.5k
6 votes
Accepted

How do repeaters work? (The technical side)

It is possible to repeat a signal without demodulating it. This is done on some amateur satellites where it is called a linear transponder. The advantage of this method is that it can carry multiple ...
Kevin Reid AG6YO's user avatar
  • 24.5k
6 votes
Accepted

Using a Duplexer and Diplexer in Series

Yes, it will work with the proper attention to details. I have done the same in the past at two repeater sites to take advantage of the coverage of the dual band antenna. Do take care as the third ...
Glenn W9IQ's user avatar
  • 18.6k
6 votes

Ham radio repeater

Possible, yes. A good idea as your plan for emergency communication while hiking on a remote and hazardous trail? I wouldn't count on it. As you've already observed, although there are repeaters along ...
Phil Frost - W8II's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Which one is the tx frequency of a repeater?

If you program your radio for duplex operation (for use with repeaters), the frequency normally displayed on your radio is your receive frequency, which is the repeater's transmit frequency. If you ...
user10489's user avatar
  • 6,230
5 votes
Accepted

Why is repeater post-xmit "burst" stronger than repeated signal?

You are probably experiencing what is called "desense". The strong signal of your transmitting radio is getting into the receiver on the receiving radio and blocking its ability to receive the ...
Glenn W9IQ's user avatar
  • 18.6k
5 votes
Accepted

VHF/UHF digital single-frequency repeater without duplexers?

There are currently products from multiple major and minor DMR equipment manufacturers to support single frequency repeater (SFR) function. They may have different names but essentially do the same ...
BM2NHC's user avatar
  • 116
5 votes

Trouble figuring out what is meant by this repeater callout?

13.8 and 12.8 are plausible as battery voltages. It is possible that this repeater is solar-powered; to test this theory, notice if the number varies consistently with the time of day (and weather). ...
Kevin Reid AG6YO's user avatar
  • 24.5k
5 votes
Accepted

building a relay for 5.8Ghz?

Let's work an example. Say the aircraft transmits at 1 watt, or 30 dBm, on 2.4 GHz. The aircraft is 500 meters away, giving a free space path loss of 92 dB. Between transmit and receive antennas ...
Phil Frost - W8II's user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

How can I tell if someone is mistakenly transmitting on a repeater output frequency, instead of the (offset) input frequency?

Some ways, roughly in order of increasing difficulty but also automatability: Most repeaters have a "courtesy beep" they transmit when their squelch detects the end of an incoming transmission, ...
Kevin Reid AG6YO's user avatar
  • 24.5k
5 votes
Accepted

Can one repeater be used to hit another repeater?

A repeater simply listens on one frequency, and retransmits what it receives on another frequency. If one repeater happened to listen on the frequency another was transmitting, theoretically you could ...
Phil Frost - W8II's user avatar

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible