[aprssig] How to detect silent/stealth digis/Igates?

Andrew P. andrewemt at hotmail.com
Fri Feb 21 08:20:21 EST 2014

Hi, Tom.

Although sensitivity testing is good, what I'm really looking for is a simple up/down test, as in "Does it still work, or has the weather emergency taken this one out?" Considering the "wonderful" ice storm we had recently in my area (southeastern Pennsylvania) that had broken some of our antennas and had power out for several days in some parts of the county, being able to proactively test "is this digi still working?" during an incident (preferably without having to leave the EOC or shelter) would be very useful (as in, "do we need to deploy alternate communications relays?").

I will ask the AEC in my group for more information, and ask him why we don't want the digis beaconing (saving power? being stealth doesn't stop them from digipeating).

I did try driving by one of the suspect digis last night, and it wouldn't digi me when I was parked right across the street from it (where two others 5 miles away were still digipeating me), so I'm assuming it's dead or antennaless right now.

Andrew Pavlin, KA2DDO
member, Chester County ARES/RACES

> From: esarfl at gmail.com
> Date: Thu, 20 Feb 2014 07:57:43 -0800
> To: aprssig at tapr.org
> Subject: Re: [aprssig] How to detect silent/stealth digis/Igates?
> On Thu, Feb 20, 2014 at 7:45 AM, Andrew P. <andrewemt at hotmail.com> wrote:
> > Greetings, all.
> >
> > How can one detect if a 'stealth' (non-beaconing) digi is working? I just got assigned to keep track of my county ARES group's digipeaters, and I'd like to find a quick way to test them for operation without having to do site visits.
> The only clue you gave us to their configuration is that they don't
> beacon, so we know they have a non-standard configuration. Some more
> information about their configuration needs to be known before we can
> describe how they will behave during a test.
> Here's one tip for now: If driving to the base of the tower for a
> test, you will fail to test the receivers sensitivity. A better test
> would be reception of a transmission from the boundary of the intended
> coverage area.
> Tom KD7LXL

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