Making my first node.. #iso


David Cameron - IRLP
 

The Motorola Maxtrac/Radius radios make great node radios, but they are not easy to program. You need special cables, a really OLD computer, and most importantly the licensed software which is no longer available. Motorola aggressively defends their copyrights so you will not find it just sitting online.

They also have a problem in the VHF portion of the band, because most of them are not made to cover below 146 MHz. So if you plan to use them on VHF and your TX frequency is below 146, they do not work right unless you REALLY know what you are doing. They will take the frequencies and transmit there, but at completely random power level, deviation, CTCSS levels, etc. A lot of people don't know this. I once had a 25W radio putting out 43W on one channel and 400mW on the next.

This is not really an IRLP discussion, and I don't want it to start up as a discussion or debate about Motorola. Please visit this site for a plethora of info on the radios (and others).

http://www.batlabs.com

David Cameron
VE7LTD

On 2021-01-12 11:10 p.m., MUSTBAJ@GMAIL.COM wrote:
I'm wanting to make my first node and I have some questions. I'm considering getting a GM300 radio but I want to make sure I'll be able to program it. Is there somewhere I need to purchase or download the software to program one of these? It's basically my last step before I pull the trigger.


K1IMD
 

MUSTBAJ@... (Whomever you are?)
I agree with VE7LTD's comments.  However a few more tidbits.  Radius GM300's & Motorola Maxtrac's (both are similar underdash radios) come in multiple flavors, different band splits, power levels and some GM300's are narrowband FM only.

Despite the few negatives they make outstanding node radios.  Easy to interface, no hacking into the radio, Gated PL/COS, Reverse Burst.  I have built several IRLP nodes with those series radios and a couple have been on the air since 2001!

If you are shopping for a radio you may want to look for a little newer radio that is a little more flexible.  The Motorola Pro Series aka CDM750, CDM1250 or CDM1550.  If UHF make sure you get the low split 403-470MHz version, there are CPS hacks no allow a high split radio (450-520 MHz) to work in the ham band but the results are mixed.  VHF models work fine out of the box in the ham band 138-174 MHz. In any case always seek the low power model.  High Power model radios will have over heating issues if parked on a busy reflector.  They use the same accessory connector as radios mentioned above and are even easier to interface.

Good luck in your quest!

73
Jon
K1IMD

On 1/13/2021 9:06 AM, David Cameron - IRLP wrote:
The Motorola Maxtrac/Radius radios make great node radios, but they are not easy to program. You need special cables, a really OLD computer, and most importantly the licensed software which is no longer available. Motorola aggressively defends their copyrights so you will not find it just sitting online.

They also have a problem in the VHF portion of the band, because most of them are not made to cover below 146 MHz. So if you plan to use them on VHF and your TX frequency is below 146, they do not work right unless you REALLY know what you are doing. They will take the frequencies and transmit there, but at completely random power level, deviation, CTCSS levels, etc. A lot of people don't know this. I once had a 25W radio putting out 43W on one channel and 400mW on the next.

This is not really an IRLP discussion, and I don't want it to start up as a discussion or debate about Motorola. Please visit this site for a plethora of info on the radios (and others).

http://www.batlabs.com

David Cameron
VE7LTD


On 2021-01-12 11:10 p.m., MUSTBAJ@... wrote:
I'm wanting to make my first node and I have some questions. I'm considering getting a GM300 radio but I want to make sure I'll be able to program it. Is there somewhere I need to purchase or download the software to program one of these? It's basically my last step before I pull the trigger.








Teton Amateur Radio Repeater Association (TARRA)
 

It would be helpful to always include your name (so we know who we are talking with) and your call sign (so we know you are a ham). It may be helpful to give your location since some of us may be able to take care of programming and setting up your radio for you you.

Mick - W7CAT
Node 3464

----- Original Message -----
From: MUSTBAJ@...
To: IRLP@irlp.groups.io
Sent: Wednesday, January 13, 2021 12:10:11 AM
Subject: [IRLP] Making my first node.. #iso

> I'm wanting to make my first node and I have some questions. I'm considering getting a GM300 radio but I want to make sure I'll be able to program it. Is there somewhere I need to purchase or download the software to program one of these? It's basically my last step before I pull the trigger.
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Bob DeMattia, K1IW
 

OK, I know we weren't support to start a discussoin, but have to chime in...

(1) It is fairly easy to find someone with the programming software.  If you can't find a ham-friendly person to do it,
the local radio shop probably still has the ability and will charge you ~ $25.  I'm not a radio shop, but I purchased
the software many years ago to maintain repeaters and many link radios.  I've programmed radios for people
here where they send them to me and I send them back - if it is a simple programming request, I only charge
the return shipping.

(2) The most-common VHF ones have a published range of 146-174 MHz, but they work just fine from 144-146.
One of my club's repeaters actually uses one for a 144.83 input and has been working just fine for years.  On the
transmit side, the final amp is broad enough to handle the slightly lower frequency.  The Motorola programming
software appears to block frequencies below 146, but a simple trick built into the unmodified software allows
programming outside that range.   The most-common UHF ones are posted to go from 438-470, and will
actually work down to 434 without too much effort,

73,
Bob - K1IW



On Wed, Jan 13, 2021 at 10:37 AM Teton Amateur Radio Repeater Association (TARRA) <tarra@...> wrote:

It would be helpful to always include your name (so we know who we are talking with) and your call sign (so we know you are a ham). It may be helpful to give your location since some of us may be able to take care of programming and setting up your radio for you you.

Mick - W7CAT
Node 3464

----- Original Message -----
From: MUSTBAJ@...
To: IRLP@irlp.groups.io
Sent: Wednesday, January 13, 2021 12:10:11 AM
Subject: [IRLP] Making my first node.. #iso

> I'm wanting to make my first node and I have some questions. I'm considering getting a GM300 radio but I want to make sure I'll be able to program it. Is there somewhere I need to purchase or download the software to program one of these? It's basically my last step before I pull the trigger.
>
>
>
>
>
>
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