Status of the GB3DA Danbury Repeater (April 2013)

We’ve been receiving a lot of enquiries about the status of GB3DA, the primary 2 metre repeater for Essex. Many of the comments we’ve received are from regular participants in the Essex Ham Monday Night Net who’ve not been able to join in with our regular Monday get-togethers. As users of the repeater will no doubt know, the repeater, located at Danbury near Chelmsford, is not operating correctly at the moment. We understand that the Essex Repeater Group is working to resolve the situation. The regular Monday Night Net has not been able to run on GB3DA in recent weeks, and we’ve had to move to the 70cm repeater, GB3ER (Details of how to access GB3ER)

What’s up with GB3DA?

Danbury Church Green TX Site
Site used by GB3DA

At the moment, when a station tried to access the repeater, the repeater opens, transmitting white noise. It’s possible to talk over the noise, but the timeout doesn’t reset correctly, effectively making this popular repeater largely unusable, and certainly not up to running our regular Monday Night Net. The Essex Repeater Group website has been reporting for the last couple of weeks that they’re aware of the problem, and that it’s apparently not a simple squelch problem. No details have been forthcoming. We’re fortunate that one of the representatives from the Essex Repeater Group, Norman M0FZW, addressed a club meeting of the Thames Amateur Radio Group on the 5th of April to give an update on the issue. It seems that the team from the Essex Repeater Group has to overcome several hurdles to gain access to the repeater site in order to investigate the problem more fully. They are required to complete various method statements and safety statements, and the repeater keeper is running through all sorts of hoops to get access to the site to address the problem. Norman requested that users of GB3DA be patient and bear with them. The team is doing its best to resolve the problem, but it’s apparently not going to be a quick fix. Norman also reported that the 70cm repeater GB3ER is operating well (it’s housed at the same site as GB3DA). He also reported that it’s hoped that the GB3DB 6m repeater will hopefully be operating within the next 1-2 months. The 5/8 antenna is due to be repaired, but the work has been hampered by the weather – it’s hoped that this will be operating by the summer.

Monday Night Net

For the time being, the Monday Night Net will be moved to GB3ER – The 70cm repeater –  If this isn’t programmed into your rig yet, check out the details of how to access GB3ER We appreciate that this isn’t ideal for everyone, but the Essex Repeater Group is working hard to restore GB3DA to normal operation.

Update 15 April 2013

GB3DA started to behave itself on Monday the 15th of April, however the noise problem returned at 20:40, during the weekly Essex Ham Monday Night Net. We’d like to thank Justin G0KSC for giving participants a update on the likely cause of the problem, and why it’s likely to be less of a problem during warner weather., See Update on GB3DA Noise Issues (April 2013)

We’ll try to bring you further updates when we have some more information from the team at the Essex Repeater Group.

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One Comment

  1. Martyn 16 April 2013 Reply

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