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Author Topic: Repeater Coverage Logging?  (Read 655 times)
KE7UFJ
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Posts: 7




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« on: June 24, 2008, 01:30:12 PM »

I wonder if you all could give me your input?

I need to survey & document repeater coverage throughout the county and had the idea that I could pair a pc controllable rig and my USB connected GPS to facititate this process.

If I could key the transmitter, ID and unkey then capture the received signal strength reading and GPS coordinates and save them to a file. If I perform this function periodically as I travel the various roads of the county and collect a database of signal strength/location readings and plot them on a map.

Is anyone aware of an existing solution? Any tips or suggestions?

Thanks

Stephen
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KE5UVL
Member

Posts: 20




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« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2008, 05:48:02 PM »

Really, this should be quite easy to do. Drive in a straight line out from the repeater and keep keying up the transmitter.

Do this until your signal is getting scratchy and/or drops completely. You have now calculated the radius of the repeater signal.

Now calculate the circumference and this should be your GENERAL coverage area of the repeater. It may vary and coverage may not be a perfect circle.

For further accuracy you may calculate the radius from 4 points, or 8 if you are obsessive. This will iron out any of the weak points in coverage -- then it will basically be connect the dots.

(This only works if you're not using directional antennas on the repeater.)

Another easy solution is to get HAM's in the county to send reports in. They will live all over the county and can give signal reports for you.

Go to a club and recruit people to help with your cause. You may even get them to map out reports while they commute around the county. Map out the points and reported strength, and you get an idea there as well.

I've never mapped signal coverage of a repeater -- but this is the quickest way to do it while maintaining efficiency.
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KE7UFJ
Member

Posts: 7




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« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2008, 08:01:59 AM »

Thanks for the reply.
Unfortunately in this area you cannot drive in a straight line in any direction from one of our  repeaters. We have many mountains & valleys to deal with. If I were to travel the available roads and perform this task manually recording the info it would likely take me several weeks to complete.

I have a mapping program that I can upload the data into if I can collect it. I really need an automated method.

Thanks

Stephen
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KQ6UP
Member

Posts: 136




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« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2008, 03:21:52 PM »

Radio Mobile Deluxe is a program that uses shuttle lands survey data to plot coverage maps.  I have found that the information it provides is VERY reliable.  It is not very user friendly, but a hec of a lot easier than driving around and taking actual data.  Esp. given RMD gives results that match real data.

Chris KQ6UP
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