I wanted to give a quick update on a Ham Radio project I’ve been working on lately. I’ve been playing with APRS for about 20 yrs now and I really like the technology and it’s offering in emergency situations.
My first dabbling was taking a Tiny Track 3 and with the help of Bert KG4BEC we soldered the kit together and build an interface cable between the FT-2500M (my first mobile radio) and the TT3 and other cable to my Garmin E-trex and the TT3. I used that to beacon my position when i was mobile around town and abroad.
After all this time I never really played with the messaging aspect of the platform and when I was looking at the Offerings from Yaesu. Yaesu seems to be the only manufacturer that has a full APRS set of features as compared to others.
I picked up an FT-DR recently and I took it on a trip with me and had fairly good success picking up other RF stations and even some messaging on a limited basis as not all other stations are message cable much like my older setup.
To continue experimentation at home out of range of any digipeaters. I built an iGate/Digipeater.
During my research I was leaning towards a Mobilinkd but they were out of stock while I was ready to get something. Then I found DigiRig which is a sound card that could easily connect to a PC or in my case a Pi. They also sold interface cables with several radios. I had a FT-25 single band vhf radio that I won from a Ham Radio Concepts giveaway that I wasn’t using a whole lot and decided to get the DigiRig and an FT-25 connection cable.
Next step was to install Direwolf on a Pi. I did this in a round about way but it can be done from this guide: https://github.com/wb2osz/direwolf/blob/master/doc/User-Guide.pdf
Once I configured the .conf file I had a working iGate/Digipeater and It’s been running great!