eHam

eHam Forums => Misc => Topic started by: W6TLY on February 11, 2014, 05:21:35 PM



Title: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: W6TLY on February 11, 2014, 05:21:35 PM
I know this one comes up from time to time, but it is true, it really is dead in LA, and for that matter most places.  There are more repeaters in LA than most states have.  There are several very high level ones, stuff from 6m FM to 1.2gig FM, linked systems, "private" systems, D-STAR systems, and on and on.

But, listen around, 90% of these systems get about 15min of use in a 24hr period.  The ones that get more are often full of... "oh yea, I got this new gun, and the Govt. wants to take it way from me....", or ".... that President of ours....", or "....yea, well I was running 1200w PEP into my 50 element yagi up 300 feet using 9913 and type N connectors, plus a pre-amp and gold plated cavities, and carbon fiber spreaders and was only getting an SWR of 1:1.2, my rotater was really spinning once I put some marine grease on the bearings, and then when I coupled my home-brew co-phase loop into the flux capacitor and keyed down, you should have seen the neighbors cat jump."


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KE4JOY on February 11, 2014, 07:14:44 PM
Dunno about your local repeaters... HF is alive and well  ;)


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KR4BD on February 11, 2014, 07:16:30 PM
I agree.  HF is "where it's at".


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: N5INP on February 12, 2014, 04:43:08 AM
But, listen around, 90% of these systems get about 15min of use in a 24hr period.

Then ham radio is dead in Fort Worth too, because it's the same situation here - most repeaters are hardly used at all.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: VE3FMC on February 12, 2014, 05:03:57 AM
Although I do not always monitor the repeaters in this area (St. Thomas-London, Ontario) when I do I rarely hear any conversations.

HF is where I spend my days. And I rarely hear any local hams operating on those bands.
Hey maybe I am lucky, I have the bands all to myself in this area  ;D


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: W8GP on February 12, 2014, 06:21:58 AM
What's a repeater?


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: G3RZP on February 12, 2014, 07:41:51 AM
My local repeater is lucky if it gets more use as a repeater than as a beacon automatically sending its callsign every 15 minutes or so.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: N5INP on February 12, 2014, 07:42:33 AM
What's a repeater?

LOL.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: W1JKA on February 12, 2014, 07:42:54 AM
Re: W8GP

Repeater?? A rifle of various calibers able to fire 5-7 shells without reloading. One of the things W6TLY heard the boys talking about on the LA uhf/vhf frequencies.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: WI8P on February 12, 2014, 07:57:53 AM
What's a repeater?

Funny answers aside, was that a serious question?


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K9YLI on February 12, 2014, 08:22:44 AM
Ithink what killed repeaters  is   tone control.. lIt used to be fun to talk to people freomall over the place
on 2 meters.   .82  wausau  82 rochester  82 mpls.. all open..often  using  82 wausau as input.. rochester
hams hearing it and using there  input which I could hear.
ONe night about  0200 there were about 20 hams on 82  from  the  UP to St Louis  all on a big round table,.
Then the repeaters all got    ''toned up'  to make  them like a local police department, reserved for the locals only.
Nowthe fun of contacts all over like   HF  is gone..
Lets try and experiment  and  remove tone from all repeaters and see what  happens.
 


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K6LCS on February 12, 2014, 12:29:02 PM
>> ... dead in L.A. ...

Repeater conversations and "personalities" are like about any other "club" environment. You need to visit a few
until you find one that fits YOU well.

I post a little list of 80 or so systems in and around Southern CA that I have found to be welcoming of new users - from
new licensees to us jaded oldsters. Try a few of the systems here ...

http://k6lcs.com/k6lcs/Docs.html

Clint K6LCS
909-241-7666 - cell


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: G3RZP on February 12, 2014, 12:36:46 PM
The other year, on vacation around Albuquerque, I couldn't get into  the repeater or the morning net. Why? The repeater wasn't in the ARRL directory and there was no info on the sub-audible tone frequency needed for access.

At least here, repeater ID contains the sub-audible tone frequency needed for access.

They are real friendly to visitors in New Mexico......


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K6LCS on February 12, 2014, 01:11:54 PM
>> ... The repeater wasn't in the ARRL directory ...

ENTIRELY the club's fault, of course. If they do not submit their info to repeater guide editors, they cannot expect to get published.

The ARRL has made it painless for repeater owners to add their info to the ARRL Guide -

http://www.arrl.org/repeaters

... so there's really no excuse for a system that WANTS to be used NOT to be included!




Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: AA4PB on February 12, 2014, 02:01:36 PM
Ham radio is a heck of a lot more than a repeater. On HF I hear stations active 24/7 so "ham radio" is not dead.



Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: WB2WIK on February 12, 2014, 03:09:16 PM
In L.A., 147.435 MHz is almost never "dead." ;)

However, I wish it was. :P


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KR4BD on February 12, 2014, 08:12:38 PM
An earlier poster said it all...  PL tones have done a lot to kill repeater use.  I don't want to sound like an old timer...

BUT....

Back in the 70's, my two meter rig was a Kenwood TR-7400.  It came with no PL capability.  I traveled all over with this radio and was able to get into repeaters EVERYWHERE.  Now, when I travel, it is becoming more difficult to find non-PL-ed repeaters. 

With most rigs, it is rather difficult (and UNSAFE) to program PL tones "on-the-fly" provided you even KNOW the proper tones to use when traveling in a distant location.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KE7TMA on February 13, 2014, 03:36:32 AM
The other year, on vacation around Albuquerque, I couldn't get into  the repeater or the morning net. Why? The repeater wasn't in the ARRL directory and there was no info on the sub-audible tone frequency needed for access.

At least here, repeater ID contains the sub-audible tone frequency needed for access.

They are real friendly to visitors in New Mexico......

Some modern radios will automatically search for repeaters and put them into a special memory bank for you, and figure out the tones as well.  Lots of repeaters have this information available to APRS users as well, so all you need to do when you come into an area is look at your screen.  I know that that fancy Kenwood APRS HT will let you punch one button and get all set up for working a new repeater just from APRS data.

Maybe they wanted to create a bit of a puzzle solving challenge for you!


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KE7TMA on February 13, 2014, 03:47:30 AM
I know this one comes up from time to time, but it is true, it really is dead in LA, and for that matter most places.  There are more repeaters in LA than most states have.  There are several very high level ones, stuff from 6m FM to 1.2gig FM, linked systems, "private" systems, D-STAR systems, and on and on.

But, listen around, 90% of these systems get about 15min of use in a 24hr period.  The ones that get more are often full of... "oh yea, I got this new gun, and the Govt. wants to take it way from me....", or ".... that President of ours....", or "....yea, well I was running 1200w PEP into my 50 element yagi up 300 feet using 9913 and type N connectors, plus a pre-amp and gold plated cavities, and carbon fiber spreaders and was only getting an SWR of 1:1.2, my rotater was really spinning once I put some marine grease on the bearings, and then when I coupled my home-brew co-phase loop into the flux capacitor and keyed down, you should have seen the neighbors cat jump."

---BEGIN QUOTE---

FCC starts acting in Southern California repeater jamming cases

"I think what most of the people in this room agree with is that we need some enforcement in Southern California. Can we please get some enforcement here in Southern California!"

That was the plea of one Southern California ham made to Riley Hollingsworth when the FCC official spoke on the Queen Mary Ocean Liner attraction in Long Beach.  Now, less than two weeks later, Hollingsworth has acted by issuing two Los Angeles Area hams stern warning letters regarding alleged malicious interference to several area repeaters.

Receiving the letters are Todd Young, W6TLY of Culver City and Brian Frobisher, WA6JFK, of Los Angeles. Both are accused in ongoing malicious interference to the KJ6TQ repeater on 449.925 MHz operated by the Metropolitan Amateur Radio System and the WB6TZY repeaters on 2 meters and 70 centimeters owned by the Cresenta Valley Amateur Radio Club.

The FCC says that the interference has occurred at various times starting in 1997 and includes the playing of tapes and music to jam the repeaters. The letters from Hollingsworth to Young and Frobisher does not mince any words. He tells them that this type of operation will not be tolerated by the FCC. He also says that one more incident will result in fines and legal action to remove both hams from the airwaves.

The warning letters to Young and Frobisher are believed to be the first of several dozen that are expected to go out in the coming weeks. If they don't meet with success, look for the government to take stronger action against rules violators in the Southern California region.

---END QUOTE---

Maybe they've just learned to ignore people who abuse the repeater system.  You have a lot of guts complaining about repeaters after receiving a letter from the FCC telling you to stop your malicious jamming.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KF5JOT on February 13, 2014, 06:47:00 AM


Then ham radio is dead in Fort Worth too, because it's the same situation here - most repeaters are hardly used at all.

Michael:  The Azle repeater has a couple of busy times...7-8 am and often around 5-6 pm. There are a couple of us on it from 10-11 pm also. There are a couple other machines that are pretty busy during drive time and and other hours. I think the 88 machine has a couple of evening nets and one area machine has a huge astronomy net one night a week. I've got 39 of the area machines programmed in on my Icom and there seems to be traffic on at least one of them all the time. Might have to hunt a bit to find it tho. I've been told that a couple of the 440 repeaters have some busy times too.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: W4KYR on February 13, 2014, 08:58:42 AM
20 years ago, a ham op from our radio club went to visit his brother in California, he took his HT with him. He said all the 440 repeaters there were closed and no one could use them. So I asked him how does one get to be a member of the closed repeater. He said it was by invitation only. 

Is the story really true that all the 440 repeaters in California are (were)  closed to other hams and no one could join them unless it was by invitation only? I thought the story was a bit farfetched. But since we are on the subject, I thought might as well ask.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KJ6ZOL on February 13, 2014, 11:25:17 AM
i recently bought a Baofeng UV-B5. I don't use it that often, but keep it charged in case of an emergency, like a flood or wildfire (I live in CA's Central Valley, so earthquakes aren't too big of a concern) so I can listen to ARES/RACES if need be. I had a Baofeng UV-5R when I first was licensed, but didn't like it that much. I'm happier with the B5. I keep the ARES/RACES official repeaters in the memory. I mainly use HF as well. I know of places where repeaters are kept going for service to long haul truckers, so they can find out road conditions without having to use a CB. When properly linked, a repeater can let the truckers know road conditions several hundred miles away. Compare that with a CB, where the usual range is a few miles, unless you're operating illegally.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: N6AJR on February 13, 2014, 11:54:22 AM
well, even though I am in northern CA, there is activity in So Cal, for one is this years convention in Visalia is sponsored by the SOCAL dx association ( http://dxconvention.org/ ) and I will be there.  there are a lot of hams involved and it is a super place to go.  It beats pacificon all to pieces.  so look into their club for  los angles radio fun.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KF7VXA on February 14, 2014, 04:30:33 PM
There are plenty of places repeaters are fairly dead, but if you listen at times such as the AM go to work or PM, trip home, there is usually always some activity.
You yourself can increase use if you get with some other hams and plan on meeting on the repeaters, others will follow.

When going on a trip, I use the ARRL repeater trip guide. Many times there are no PL codes, but if you spend some time, many times these can be found and added, it has worked for me.
HF is the way to go, lots of activity, but if you don't talk on your local repeaters, then maybe you are a part of the problem.
Find some friends and meet on the repeaters from time to time.
It's good they are there if needed, but I too would like to see much more activity on them than there is.
At times, some areas have so many repeaters that it's hard to figure which one to use. Some areas with only a couple repeaters seem to be far busier.
As to LA, it because many regular people have fled the area and left it to the gang bangers who don't get licenses. I was in the San Diego area, left in 1999, best move I've ever made, California has lots going for it, but the ruling class and their taxes, laws, rules and regulations have made it a very unfriendly place and too many people have ruined it. You should have lived in San Diego in the 1960's, it was fantastic, fast forward to 2014, you can keep it.

73's John


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KK6GMN on February 14, 2014, 08:15:42 PM
Up here in the SAC valley we have a lot of active repeaters.  Lots of nets, lots of chatter, not all ham or politics related.  I find it very fun to get on the 2m and 70cm bands and talk to folks.  I do like HF as well, but repeaters are very far from dead.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K6CPO on February 15, 2014, 12:55:16 PM
Ithink what killed repeaters  is   tone control.. lIt used to be fun to talk to people freomall over the place
on 2 meters.   .82  wausau  82 rochester  82 mpls.. all open..often  using  82 wausau as input.. rochester
hams hearing it and using there  input which I could hear.
ONe night about  0200 there were about 20 hams on 82  from  the  UP to St Louis  all on a big round table,.
Then the repeaters all got    ''toned up'  to make  them like a local police department, reserved for the locals only.
Nowthe fun of contacts all over like   HF  is gone..
Lets try and experiment  and  remove tone from all repeaters and see what  happens.
 

Repeaters started using tone squelch not "to make them like a police department" but to allow more repeaters.  By using CTCSS access, it allows the same pair of frequencies to be used in different locales and not interfere with one another.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: AA4PB on February 15, 2014, 01:11:07 PM
I think what killed repeaters is tone control.

All you have to do is set your tone to the frequency for the repeater you want to access. The use of tones keeps someone from keying up multiple repeaters that use the same RF frequency. With most transceivers you can program multiple memories with the same RF frequencies and different tone frequencies. Then you just select the memory for the repeater you want to use. With 100+ memories on most radios there should be no shortage.



Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K9MHZ on February 16, 2014, 11:42:34 AM
I don't live out there, but anecdotally in the 5-6 times I'm Ontario per year, I don't have any trouble finding some activity.  The linking they do across 6 m to 23 cm and everywhere in between with the possible exception of 2 meters (they're dorks here in Indy, too) is very cool. 

Maybe the "dead repeaters" matter is everywhere because there are so many of them?  I don't remember so many repeaters "back in the day", especially when we were all crystal-controlled, and the repeaters themselves were specifically-built, big, and full of tubes.  Now, with even a little knowledge of radio interfacing, some cavities, antennas, and a good location......and you too can have your own system.  Not wrong, but maybe some unintended consequences, especially in the cell phone era?

Dunno.




Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KB2FCV on February 16, 2014, 11:59:02 AM
There is so much more to ham radio than repeaters... 95 percent of my activity is not on repeaters. Tons of interesting facets of radio to get into. Check them out!


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: N1DDS on February 16, 2014, 01:58:00 PM
I visited Miami, FL last July and found at least 20 active repeaters....only one of which I heard being used during a 3 day weekend!  The hams on that system do not follow the basic "rules of the road" like identifying themselves properly.  It's the wild, wild west there.  Makes me appreciate the ham environment in the SF Bay Area more.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K6CPO on February 17, 2014, 12:30:13 PM
Repeaters in San Diego are very active, some more than others, but most seem to be used regularly.  There is a very large retired community here and a lot of them are hams that are on the radio a good deal. The activity levels go up at this time of year as the snowbirds migrate south to escape the winter weather.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: ONAIR on February 17, 2014, 02:35:09 PM
In L.A., 147.435 MHz is almost never "dead." ;)

However, I wish it was. :P
   LOL!!!  Good point!  Same goes for 450.  Unfortunately, the entire world is now listening to those repeaters over the internet!!!   http://www.w6nut.com   http://ww.w6dek.com   http://www.my435.com


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K9MHZ on February 17, 2014, 04:15:40 PM
Yep, 2 meters is quite the trailer park, Jerry Springer crowd  here in Indy as well.   


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KC7BYP on February 17, 2014, 09:37:15 PM
Yes ham radio isn't dead. The tones are there to keep repeaters from causing QRM with each other.  And most of the repeaters around my QTH only have the tone to help weak stations get in. There is many diffrent things to do with ham radio.  Like I live in an apt.   Right now the only way I get on hf is via a prog from www.remotehams.com (http://www.remotehams.com)  this prog lets me control an other ham's remote base station in an other town via the internet.  See what I have posted about it on my blog   http://steveshamshack.com (http://steveshamshack.com) .  When I get good enough at flying remote control model helicopters I plain on buying a big gas powered r/c helicopter and fit it with a high scan tv camera and transmitter/ data transmitter that will transmit video and data (altitude and aprs coordinates) down to my laptop.  There are still digital cameras available at the hobby shop.  But as all of you know live video transmission can't be done without a license.   Also the last time I had to go to the VA main clinic
in Portland Oregon I forgot my TomTom navigator.  I had to get on the local repeater to get directions to get to a store I was going to.   One time I blew a tire out in the middle of nowere with no cell coverage and my spare tire was flat.  I was able to rase the local repeater and ham operator came out and gave me a hand.  He turned out to be the owner at the local tire shop.  So there you go. Ham radio isn't dead.

Steve kc7byp
Ham radio is a heck of a lot more than a repeater. On HF I hear stations active 24/7 so "ham radio" is not dead.




Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K8YS on February 18, 2014, 02:01:55 PM
>> ... The repeater wasn't in the ARRL directory ...

ENTIRELY the club's fault, of course. If they do not submit their info to repeater guide editors, they cannot expect to get published.

The ARRL has made it painless for repeater owners to add their info to the ARRL Guide -

http://www.arrl.org/repeaters

... so there's really no excuse for a system that WANTS to be used NOT to be included!




Depends on the state coordinating committee. There was a time that the ARRL Repeater Directory would NOT acccept an entry unless it was placed by the state repeater coordinator.

I do not know if this is the current policy, but it was.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KQ6Q on February 19, 2014, 01:09:25 AM
Try the Catalina repeater on 2m - wide coverage San Diego to Santa Barbara, no PL tones used. That's your best bet for a random local contact, the rest of the repeaters are used by groups associated with them,and folks are at work, on the internet, etc.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: W6TLY on July 15, 2014, 07:05:25 PM

FCC starts acting in Southern California repeater jamming cases

"I think what most of the people in this room agree with is that we need some enforcement in Southern California. Can we please get some enforcement here in Southern California!"

That was the plea of one Southern California ham made to Riley Hollingsworth when the FCC official spoke on the Queen Mary Ocean Liner attraction in Long Beach.  Now, less than two weeks later, Hollingsworth has acted by issuing two Los Angeles Area hams stern warning letters regarding alleged malicious interference to several area repeaters...

Maybe they've just learned to ignore people who abuse the repeater system.  You have a lot of guts complaining about repeaters after receiving a letter from the FCC telling you to stop your malicious jamming.



Well, if you'd do some more research you'd find out how this case really ended up.  Many repeaters were being "jammed" during this time, including public safety communications.  Only a short time after first being contacted by the FCC, "they" got to the bottom of it, and guess what?  It stopped.  After having several conversations with Mr. Hollingsworth about this subject, neither he nor the FCC was willing to present to me or the ARRL any of their evidence.

Here is where this and other QRM was coming from during this time:  http://hamsonline.proboards.com/thread/66

This issue has from time to time come up, but if you'll check with two of the largest and most active groups in Southern California (MRA - Mountain Repeater Assoc, a now defunct group, of which I was a long time member and good friend of the founder, K6VE, as well as many, many years with the PAPA System as a member and their lead web / media officer) I think you'll find that my operations have been and continue to be of the highest caliber.  The ability of a repeater owner to "think" he knows who is causing problems (yes, I did operate on the system in question at the time) and simply send a letter amazes me.  Again, never was I presented with any form of evidence.  I later spoke with Bill Pasternak (News Line) and he published, on an episode of News Line, a bit of "my side of the story".  You seem to be handy with a web search, I'm sure you can find it.

73 OM.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KM4AH on July 15, 2014, 07:52:17 PM
There are two many repeaters period. If you got rid of 75% of them and did away with the tones you might actually get some activity. Was in the 70's anyway.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: W6TLY on July 16, 2014, 08:01:51 AM
There are two many repeaters period. If you got rid of 75% of them and did away with the tones you might actually get some activity. Was in the 70's anyway.

Agreed, here in Los Angeles / SoCal anyway.  I'm the OP on this thread and I'm standing by what I originally said.  HAM radio, at least repeater activity, is about dead in SoCal, at least it is relative to what it was only 20 years ago or less.  Repeaterbook.com (http://www.repeaterbook.com/repeaters/index.php?state_id=06#sthash.3afiOtkX.dpbs) says there are 2,300 repeaters in California. Twenty three thousand!

Two of the highest level machines, Mt. Wilson and Mt. Disappointment used to be be active all the time, they were machines where you actually had to "break" if you needed to make a call.  Now, there literally are 3 QSO in a 24 hrs period.  In the AM on the Mt. Wilson box, there is an informal "net" of OM's that have been meeting on the air for decades.  Other than that, you might hear one other call a day.

The other problem, and its been talked about here on eHam and other boards, are private or closed systems.  I don't know how it is in other states / cities, but in SoCal at least 50% of the spectrum set aside for repeater use (144 - 1.2) is marked as private or closed.  The funny thing is, plug any of these freq's into your VFO and listen for a day, you'll nearly always hear even less chatter than the already dead "open" repeaters.  I realize it is very expensive to build and maintain a stand alone repeater, and a linked system exponentially are even more so, but... But, if equipment is sitting on a hill top doing nothing, then what is the point?  I'm not sure what the answer is to get more activity on repeaters in general, but for private systems, if they need to make some $, so help support the equipment, they need to entice users to "use" the equipment.  They need to welcome ALL HAM's to at least try their repeater(s).  Who knows, maybe some would become paying users.

Amateurs are an finicky bunch, as you know if you've been a HAM for very long. We talk about disaster communications, how we want to help, about the contacts we've made and the new friends we've met on the air, but ID on a closed system (in SoCal anyway) and most of the time you'll hear nothing, because no one else is using it, or you'll be instantly reminded that "this is a closed system".

HAM radio is  already dieing, and we're only adding nails to the coffin.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: W6TLY on July 16, 2014, 08:06:47 AM
>> ... dead in L.A. ...

Repeater conversations and "personalities" are like about any other "club" environment. You need to visit a few
until you find one that fits YOU well.

I post a little list of 80 or so systems in and around Southern CA that I have found to be welcoming of new users - from
new licensees to us jaded oldsters. Try a few of the systems here ...

http://k6lcs.com/k6lcs/Docs.html

Clint K6LCS
909-241-7666 - cell

Clint - Thank you for this list!


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: W4KYR on July 16, 2014, 08:29:46 AM
Are all the 440 repeaters still private and closed in Southern California? This is what I heard from a fellow ham who visited there in the 1990's.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K8AXW on July 16, 2014, 09:33:51 AM
Quote
.yea, well I was running 1200w PEP into my 50 element yagi up 300 feet using 9913 and type N connectors, plus a pre-amp and gold plated cavities, and carbon fiber spreaders and was only getting an SWR of 1:1.2, my rotater was really spinning once I put some marine grease on the bearings, and then when I coupled my home-brew co-phase loop into the flux capacitor and keyed down, you should have seen the neighbors cat jump

And you expect to hear......WHAT? 


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K6CPO on July 16, 2014, 11:42:05 AM
Are all the 440 repeaters still private and closed in Southern California? This is what I heard from a fellow ham who visited there in the 1990's.

No...

In San Diego we have a number of "open" 440 repeaters, including one that covers all the way up into Orange County.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: NO2A on July 16, 2014, 12:49:52 PM
I think one thing that`s killed repeaters is the attitude heard on many of them. Unlike hf,for the most part,repeaters attract an unfriendly environment. How many times have you thrown out your call,only to hear a,"kerchunk" but no reply. Or you`ve heard a group talking to each other,so you announce your prescence. Nobody answers,you`re not allowed to talk with them because they don`t "know you personally."How does this make a new or old ham feel? Or maybe you needed an audio check,and some wise guy says,"Your crappy radio sounds like s**t." You get the point. Or the ones out in CA,where you hear,"I`m getting high and watching tv,what are we doing tonight guys?"By contrast,last night on 40m I was invited to join a roundtable on ssb with a very nice crowd. Why can`t repeaters be like that? I dunno,but many times I`ve thought about yanking my 2m/440 rig out of my car and selling it.(or just plain running it over,along with my ht`s.)No joke.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: KJ6ZOL on July 16, 2014, 01:03:58 PM
I think one thing that`s killed repeaters is the attitude heard on many of them. Unlike hf,for the most part,repeaters attract an unfriendly environment. How many times have you thrown out your call,only to hear a,"kerchunk" but no reply. Or you`ve heard a group talking to each other,so you announce your prescence. Nobody answers,you`re not allowed to talk with them because they don`t "know you personally."How does this make a new or old ham feel? Or maybe you needed an audio check,and some wise guy says,"Your crappy radio sounds like s**t." You get the point. Or the ones out in CA,where you hear,"I`m getting high and watching tv,what are we doing tonight guys?"By contrast,last night on 40m I was invited to join a roundtable on ssb with a very nice crowd. Why can`t repeaters be like that? I dunno,but many times I`ve thought about yanking my 2m/440 rig out of my car and selling it.(or just plain running it over,along with my ht`s.)No joke.

I decided not to get a 144/440 rig for my car because it would be a waste of money. I already have two Baofengs, and never use them. I keep one charged for EmComm use, but other than that I don't use them. CA has a lot of people getting high, that's for sure, weed and meth addicts.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: AK7V on July 16, 2014, 02:39:01 PM
Yeah, repeaters are boring.  I tried to take part in some nets but sitting there listening to "no traffic" dozens of times, waiting for my call to come up, was about as fun as watching paint dry.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K8AXW on July 17, 2014, 08:42:29 AM
Yes....very true....repeaters can be very boring.  In many cases repeaters are under utilized.  But it doesn't have to be this way.  Have any of you "bored" people ever tried to initialize a conversation?  Doesn't anyone ever have a "problem" that they would like to discuss or working on a project that you would like to talk about?

If you can't get a response on that repeater (more than one try - Different times of the day) then move to another repeater. 

BTW, as an aside, this is why I always recommend to a "newbie" not to put your available money into V/UHF gear while getting started in ham radio.

A repeater is just that.  You don't put anything into it, nothing comes out!


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K0JEG on July 26, 2014, 12:22:47 PM
The PAPA D-star system seems fairly active. It uses reflector 12-A for linking, so anyone can link up. Much of it is the same few people, but that's the case with most repeaters these days.

I think what killed off repeaters was the cheap, small HF mobile radios, and the end of the morse code requirement for HF privileges. Don't get me wrong, I'm very happy I didn't have to pass a code test (and I tried a few times) to upgrade, but when I was a technician only I had a lot more motivation to be on local (and sometimes not so local) repeaters. Since getting my General and Extra class license I've been focused more on HF (and finding it somewhat lacking). Given only so many hours in a day VHF and above has taken a back seat, but recently I've renewed my interest in VHF+ bands. There's a lot going on that doesn't get much attention (and much of the attention it does get is negative in the case of new digital modes) that holds my interest far more than a 5-9 report from a KW station working a pileup.


Title: RE: HAM Radio IS Dead in Los Angeles
Post by: K8AXW on July 27, 2014, 08:10:56 AM
JEG:  I've given your comments a lot of thought and reflection based on the ham activities around here, both repeater and HF operation.  I'm afraid I have to disagree with you.

In recent years the number of hams has increased dramatically.  Again, based on local activity and not official numbers, it seems the licensee increase has been in the Tech category.  Most have moved from the 11m band to 2m FM.  Initially there is a flurry of activity from this group and then, and here I'm guessing, most find a more regimented method of communication compared to the rollicking banter on CB and become bored.  Then you hear less and less from them.

Very few upgrade.  Down through the years I've asked casual questions about their interests, eventually getting around to their interests in ham radio and I've found that very few actually DO anything except listen or talk on their VHF HT.

I've found that the most active on 2m are those who upgraded and are active on HF, community service, etc.  These are the ones that have something to talk about!  You'll find these gravitating to 2m to find the old timers who can answer questions and help them and actually are making an effort to integrate.  However, these are few and far between.