[aprssig] Another APRS hidden feature

'Scott Miller' scott at opentrac.org
Sun Jun 10 14:06:14 EDT 2007

I figured everyone knew about this by now.  Guess I should be advertising it
more!  I used the same thing for tracking down my balloon launch last
November.  I had a Garmin GPSmap 60CS connected to an Alinco DR-135T with a
prototype T2-135 board installed.  Not only was I able to use the go-to
feature to get bearing and distance to the balloon, I also had target
course/speed, altitude, payload temperature, battery voltage, and ascent
rate on the waypoint detail screen.  For SAR use, you could include notes
about what the particular object is, instead of just a waypoint name.  Works
on Magellan units with serial input, too.
I believe the OpenTracker+ is the cheapest thing out there that'll do NMEA
waypoint output.  It won't do all of the fancy Garmin/Magellan stuff like
the T2, but it'll match the Kenwoods and then some as far as supported data
types go.  I was going to list it on my site (finally) this weekend, but I'm
not sure - I'm almost out of cases again, and it'll probably be the end of
the week before I can start shipping more.
I did get one new product listed, though.  I wound up with a bunch of extra
cases for the OT1x that I won't be using for that, so I made up some proto
boards to go with them.  They're great for projects requiring DB9's on both
ends - custom adapters, power converters, or whatever.  I've got them here
for $7 a set -
https://www.argentdata.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=58.  The new
surface mount OT1+ module will fit in there (not selling those quite yet,
either) so you can have a complete tracker with about half of the enclosure
left over for sensors or something.  Hmm, I've got some 7.2 volt NiMH
battery packs that'll fit under the board, too - I ought to sell some of


From: aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org [mailto:aprssig-bounces at lists.tapr.org]
On Behalf Of Wes Johnston, AI4PX
Sent: Sunday, June 10, 2007 10:40 AM
To: TAPR APRS Mailing List
Subject: Re: [aprssig] Another APRS hidden feature

This is a terrrific feature of my d700 and gpsmap276.  I had to move a
portable digipeater during a race event and on the way back from fetching
the digi, someone at the comm center plotted a point on the map where they
wanted me to place the portable digi at the other end of the course.  Worked
great!  All they had to do was plot it on the map and then call me by voice
to tell it it was there... I suppose entirely on aprs they could have txt
messaged the name of that waypoint to me so that I'd know to look for it. 

On 6/10/07, John Zaruba Jr <aa2bn at comcast.net> wrote: 

Hi Folks,

I haven't seen this discussed (in my memory) but there is another way
to use APRS tactically. 

If your GPS unit has road routing capabilities, and your APRS device
has a waypoint feature (like the D7, D700, and HamHUD II) you can use
the route to waypoint feature to navigate to an APRS object.

One example is to use an APRS Client program to create an object,
like a shelter, and broadcast it on RF where it is picked up by the
APRS device and exported to the attached GPS as a waypoint.  In my
case, I use a Garmin GPSMap 60csx, I select the waypoint and pick 
"follow roads", and either "shortest distance" or "shortest time" and
the GPS plots a route to the APRS object. I was helping a new ham
learn APRS last night, and we found that his Magellan unit (sorry but 
I didn't get the model number) has the same functionality.

I plan to use this on Field Day to help people find our site if
they're not familiar with it's location.

Just some food for thought... 


John AA2BN

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