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( video links follow introduction )

Out of high school ( 1975 ), I went into the Army ( Fort Jackson, SC ) .  They breached my contract after the first electronics school and gave me the choice to stay in and pick another MOS, or separation .  I got out and joined the Navy .  When I took the entrance exam in the Navy, they told me that I could pick anything in the book so, I picked Aviation Electronics Anti-Submarine Warfare Technician ( designation AX ) .  I worked as the in-flight technician on P3-C patrol aircraft ( hurricane and enemy submarine hunter - 4 turbo prop engines )  .  I loaded the computer ( 64k iron core memory ) from a magnetic tape transport ( 15 inch tape reels ) in pre-flight .  I troubleshooted and maintained the computer operations and peripherals during in-flight ( 10 hour flights ) .  Then I dismounted the tape, shut the system down, and removed and replaced any malfunctioning black boxes to turn in to maintenence at post-flight .

We were called ' push buttons ' because I was paid as rank E-3 from day 1 and guaranteed E-4 rank after completing my first school .

After getting out of the Navy, I worked as a railroad switchman for Southern Railway for almost 10 years .  During that time I messed around with CB radios a bit, but never thought about ham radio .  While working at the railroad, I knew I didn't want to keep doing that for 40 + more years, so I studied computer programming on my own and eventually got a job . 

During those early years of personal computers, I got my first one; a Radio Shack Color Computer .  Using it, I studied BASIC, assembly, and C language .  In about 1981, I experienced my first experiment with DIGITAL SOUND recordings .  I found an asembly language routine, in one of the two national computer magazines, that sampled the value at a memory address which corresponded to the joystick position .  The joystick movement varied a 5 volt source and the computer's analog to digital converter presented a number that ranged from 0 to 255 to the joystick memory address .  The assembly routine read that memory address value and stored the numbers to memory . After storing, it had a function to read those stored numbers and then apply their value out to the speaker for playing the digital sound .  To modulate the 5 volts of the joystick, I connected the output of an audio tape player to a resistor and a capacitor, then to the 5 volt wire of the joystick .  The sound of the audio out of the tape player caused the 5 volts at the joystick to vary at the audio rate .  It was the first time I had ever heard sound coming from a device that had no moving parts involved .  At that time, I speculated that we would have music players with no moving parts within 10 years; I was wrong, it took 20 years !

Some time after that, I got my first 300 baud, manually operated, direct connect modem .  Using those manual modems, you would have to call up your friend and tell them to turn on their modem at the same time you turned on yours; one person would flip a switch to ' answer ' mode and the other person switched to ' originate ' mode; then you would both hang up the phones and your modems would connect to each other and allow you to play games or some other ' networked ' activity .

Before ' auto answer ' modems hit the market, I devised a way to get my equipment to function in that capacity ->

I connected a transformer to the phone line so that the ring signal voltage would modulate the 5 volts of the joystick input, thereby having values stored in mermory by the afore-mentioned assembly routine .  Then I wrote a C language program that would read those stored values and deduce when the phone was ringing .  When the C program saw that the phone was ringing, it would energize the cassette tape motor relay that was in the computer .  The power to the modem was wired to that motor relay, so that when the computer energized the relay, the modem power would be turned on and it would connect to the calling modem .

In order to facilitate using one phone line for regular calls and modem connection calls - I modified the C program to not answer the phone unless the phone rang one time, then no ring for over 10 seconds, but rang again within 30 seconds .  That way if it was a regular call, the computer would not turn on the modem, but if it rang once then a 10 second pause and then rang again within 30 seconds, it would power up the modem .

Fast forward 30 years, I have worked as a programmer for a mortgage company, a small company where we developed the dispatching and tracking software for UPS Freight, and a nationwide bank .

I never went to college until recently and earned an Associates in Science degree, graduating with high honors .  GPA 3.94  I made all A ' s but one B in algebra ... DOH !  During one of my HTML web development courses, I made a web page entitled ' Real Secret Agents Don't Use Facebook '  -  Index to the course work for two classes

Somewhere in the middle of August 2017, I decided to get an analog radio and then found out about Fusion and DMR, so I decided to get my ham license .  I am enjoying using my TYT MD-2017 on my SharkRF OpenSpot .


Upcoming Brandmeister Administrator Appreciation Net TGIF 31665

Recently during a TGIF talk group 31665 net meeting, I suggested that a future meeting could be a ' Brandmeister Administrator Appreciation Net ' .  Come join talk group TGIF 31665 on DMR or Fusion or WIRES-X and find out about each Friday at 8 : 30 PM EST net meeting and when the ' Brandmeister Administrator Appreciation Net ' will be taking place .

I suggested that the ' Brandmeister Administrator Appreciation Net ' should not be technical or ham detail oriented, but simply hams talking about associations and ' good times ' that they had on DMR .  I think that many hams out there have wonderful stories to tell about how they have enjoyed DMR QSO ' s since Brandmeister and DMR came to be popular .

Say hello to the TGIF talk group 31665 ' grand master of ceremonies ' - Robert ( in Coral Springs, Florida ) K4WVZ and ask about when the ' Brandmeister Administrator Appreciation Net ' will be happening ...


These are the first YouTube videos for me, I hope to improve in future by finding a better recording application and learning to make better presentations .

Two OpenSpots On One GL Mini Router / View OS Dashboard from Cellphone Providing Hostspot - K7CET

This video demonstrates how to configure your GL Mini Router to be able to have two OpenSpots connected to your GL router . You can have your computer and an OpenSpot connected to the router at the same time so you can configure the router and not have to move the network cable to and from the computer to the OpenSpot. Also, you will be able to access the OpenSpot configuration web pages from the same cellphone that is providing the hotspot connection .

Note : I misspoke about the LAN ports of the GL mini router getting their IP address from the cellphone . The addresses are statically defined on the router .


If you are using a TP-Link router, here is a video for configuring it; produced by Jason -> KD5TJG ->

OpenSpot Video


Another video shows how to set up your MD-2017 codeplug, OpenSpot and Brandmeister to use static talkgroups .

Note : You do not need to create a separate zone just for TG 9 .  You can simply include TG 9 in with other channels in your existing zone and select it there .  Just make sure you have the channel setting for TG 9 ' Group List ' selected for the Rx group list containing all the TG ' s that you are wanting to make static on Brandmeister .  Also, Brandmeister now requires a 7 digit or 9 digit DMR number - AN 8 DIGIT NUMBER IS NOT ACCEPTABLE !

Also, the United States Brandmeister servers do not seem to work correctly at this time, I am sure they are working to correct the problem, but if you notice that the radio is hanging on one talk group for a long time even when there is low activity on that talk group and you know there is activity on other talk groups in your static list - then you should try selecting a different Brandmeister server in the Connectors tab of the OpenSpot . The Canada server works well .


Another discovery I made is how to access ad hock talk group entries on the OpenSpot ->

This video demonstrates the ability to access ad hoc talk group entries that are not programmed into your radio .



This video shows how to change the frequency range of your MD - 2017 codeplug and keep all the data intact . Ordinarily if you load your codeplug and try to change the frequency range, it will clear all the data and you have to start the codeplug from scratch . This demonstration shows how to use a hex editor to change the correct values in your codeplug to make the frequency changes inside the file .



This video shows how to configure your MD 2017 radio for using the One Touch Access buttons to make a call for 4000 disconnect and OpenSpot 9001 IP address and 9998 Brandmeister server number .  The MD 380 and 390 are similarly configured .



WARNING - Make sure you save your data to a file before you make any changes - any mistake could cause your radio to malfunction !

Proceed at your own risk !

This video demonstrates how to change the transmit power level of the low setting on the MD-2017 . This procedure also applies to the MD-380 and the MD-390 . There are also many other settings that may be beneficial for resolving problems communicating with a hotspot - such as frequency adjustments ...

Change Frequency / Transmit Power Level MD 2017 380 390 - K7CET



The purpose of this video is to demonstrate downloading and converting the DMR-Mark contacts database, then loading it to the MD-2017 radio .

Note : In the video, I talked about my using the Windows 10 Game DVR Recorder, but I forgot to say that after you choose a window, then you press and hold the Windows key and press the G key to bring up the recorder control dialog .

Add DMR Marc DMR ID Contacts Database to MD 2017 - K7CET



The purpose of this video is to show how to use your DMR radio and your SharkRF OpenSpot to connect to System Fusion and the room of your choice . 

Note : I forgot to mention that you should go to the Settings tab and in C4FM settings section - look for the label ' Default callsign for DMR calls: ' - put in your callsign there . ( in order to see this section - make sure to check the ' advanced mode ' checkbox at the bottom right of the OpenSpot Dashboard )

K7CET 73

SharkRF OpenSpot DMR to System Fusion - K7CET




8513770 Last modified: 2017-12-15 04:03:49, 13817 bytes

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