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Nov 3, 2023Liked by Steve Stroh N8GNJ

Steve, check out the Richie Brothers auction site. The currently have 494 'Light Towers' in their auction inventory.

https://www.rbauction.com/light-towers?cid=23763769953

Ren K7JB--

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Ren - That's a lot of light towers... I sense a surge in Amateur Radio light tower projects.

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Nov 4, 2023Liked by Steve Stroh N8GNJ

Yep...I see recent auction prices from $500-$4000 depending upon location and model.

There are a lot of international listing in their list. Several in BC, Alberta, Calif, and a LOT in Texas...

I'm only seeing 2 in Washington State, the operational one is in Spokane, but will be auctioned next month (Dec 21) through the Chehalis Richie Bros. location.

https://www.rbauction.com/idp/2014-multiquip-lt12-light-tower?invId=14224222&id=ci&auction=chehalis-wa-2023218

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Nov 4, 2023Liked by Steve Stroh N8GNJ

About that comment by W6EM on the symbol rate Notice of Rulemaking, this is what I call a "kitchen sink" argument. He even brings in January 6 and claims that a this rule-change will be "Clearly a potential threat to our national security" (as did Rappaport in an earlier comment). When somebody throws this amount of crap at the wall in hopes that some of it will stick, I have to wonder what their *actual* objection is. I do hope that the FCC can see through the smokescreen emitted by the Rappaport faction.

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Paul - I think the FCC has "seen through the smokescreen" and this NPRM is queued up for a yes / no vote. As I (very imperfectly) understand the FCC process, ex-parte comments only serve to have one's position on the official record, which is potentially useful for citations in the future.

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Nov 4, 2023Liked by Steve Stroh N8GNJ

We love the Raspberry Pi, but for many projects it's too much. The ESP32 and Raspberry Pi 2040 chips are great for low power and have enough processing capability to do AFSK and other audio modems. The Meshtastic protocol runs on ESP32 with a LoRa chip, for example. I can run a node (that can perform double duty as an MQTT gateway) on a single 18650 for over a day easily. Add a small solar panel and it can operate indefinitely. I think that the amateur radio community should consider some of these other chip options, especially for interfacing with mobile devices that can do a lot of the heavy lifitng.

As for the "No Winlink!" folks... 🙄 No one wants to bother with HF email.

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Ready - Agreed that the RPi classics are overkill for certain applications, and Amateur Radio should consider other chips / boards for Amateur Radio applications. But as Jeff Geerling points out in this blog post - https://www.jeffgeerling.com/blog/2023/rock-5-b-not-raspberry-pi-killer-yet, one of the prime reasons to keep using Raspberry Pi is the stellar support available from the Raspberry Pi organizations for making them widely available at reasonable prices (once the backlog demand is satiated) and support such as a dedicated, well-engineered Linux distribution that is tested for use on all Raspberry Pi boards.

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Nov 5, 2023Liked by Steve Stroh N8GNJ

Thanks for surfacing the new APRS to SMS service from NA7Q. I had seen some chatter about SMSGTE going offline but didn't pay close attention until now. Glad to see someone else step in.

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Cale - You're welcome, but I and Zero Retries are just the messenger. I can pass along info like this in Zero Retries when others make it available to me.

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Nov 6, 2023Liked by Steve Stroh N8GNJ

Thank you for sharing all of these sections (replying to the Cheap Data Radios section, but loved the Satellite section and many more!)

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N6UOW - You're welcome! Yeah, satellites... looking forward to heavier involvement in actually working Amateur Radio satellites!

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