As mentioned before I’m remodelling the attic. The attic used to be my radio room, so that had to go for a while. Now, more then a year later, the attic is almost ready. My two sons will move from the first floor to their new rooms at the attic hopefully this summer. And that means two rooms come available on the first floor! One of those rooms will be my new radio room.

After more than a year without my own place to store my radio stuff, do experiments and repairs, I really miss it. Not to mention all the collected radio/electronics stuff laying around the house because I have no place to put it. She-who-must-be-obeyed is not pleased either with the messy situation but put up with it for now.

The good part about this situation is I’ve had more then a year to think about how I want my new radio room to look like and what I want to install for it. I’m gonna put in some special power supply, internet connectivity on fiber, and of course I will rebuild all the antenna material and weather station with all new cabling. There will be a new cable tray from the roof to my radio room, I will create a dedicated earth rod for the radio room etcetera.
So it was way to silent on this blog but I will keep you guys and gals posted on everything that comes ahead with furnishing my new radio room!

Hope you all survived the boring times, more news is coming your way!

Setup Echolink node PA8E

Motivation

A few years ago I’ve setup an echolink – RF bridge with the Kenwood TM-D710. With this I could listen and talk to an echolink node of No Agenda from Adam Curry. It’s quite an awesome thing to be able to walk in and around the house with my handy talky and be able to listen and talk to people on the other side Continue reading

second TM-D710After I bought my first Kenwood TM-D710 in 2012 I discovered this was the ideal rig for me, mobile as well as stationary. I use it primarily in the shack and took it with me in the car when went mobile. I figured it would be convenient to have a second TM-D710 main-unit in the car, then I only have switch the front panel between shack and car. In order to help me trace a second TM-D710 unit, I set a Google Alert on Kenwood TM-D710.
Forget totally about this alert until a few weeks ago I received a mail there was a new entry for my search term. I clicked it and it was an ad on a local sales site. After a short bid I got a message from it’s previous owner Rudy PD1RVM. So a long story short: a few days later my second TM-D710 arrived. It was still in it’s original box and in mint condition. After some short tests the rig seems fine and I had to determine which one to put in the car and which one stays in the shack.
I did some modifications (adding GPS to the display-unit, swapping the noisy fan of the main-unit). After some thinking I decided to use my old front-panel (with GPS-module) and the main-unit from the second TM-D710(with slightly more noisy fan) in the car. The front-panel of the second TM-D710 went to my old main-unit in the shack. No sooner said then done I tested the config in the car. Worked excellent!
But when testing the setup in the shack, it fails to connect to my weather station. That’s weird! Tried different things but nothing helps. I suspected the GPS-port on the front-panel of the second TM-D710. It had to do something to do with the port. Finally I took apart the front-panel from my old radio, connected the GPS-module to the standard Kenwood wire and connected it to the new front-panel. Indeed, also nothing.
Next step: take apart the new panel and find something blackened. But to my total surprise it wasn’t broke; there was a beautiful build in GPS-module as well! That explains a lot, when there is a GPS-module in it, the serial port is occupied from the inside. I’m never able to see any device I connect from the outside.
Tested the new front-panel in the car to see which GPS-module performed better. No doubt about it: it’s the one in the second TM-D710! It has a fix within 2 second where I had to wait at least a minute for my old GPS-module to get a fix.
Disassembled the GPS-module from my old front-panel and connected the weather-station again. Now it plays immediately.

Now I’m a proud owner of two TM-D710’s. One for mobile and one for my shack.