History of the 440.05 Maple City Repeater - Link




Coverage Maps


The Maple City 440.05 MHz repeater was on the air for about a year during 1990-1991. 

The site was at the former home of KF8KK on Co Rd 669 just west of Maple City.  The 56' tower was the original home of the 147.30 repeater before it moved to the much better site atop the ski hill at the Sugar Loaf resort just north of neighboring Cedar.   Once the 147.3 repeater moved to SugarLoaf, the 440.05 repeater was placed in operation in order to provide access to the HF and VHF remote base functionality.

When KF8KK sold his Maple City home, this system was dismantled and the equipment dispersed for other uses.

Soon after KF8KK (WB2VTN at the time) moved to Maple City from Long Island NY he erected a 56' Rohn BX tower in his yard and proceeded to put antennas on it.

Since the first radio system to use the tower was the initial airing of the 147.30 repeater (using gear from the old VTN 145.19 Oceanside NY rptr which was brought to MI), the top of the tower has a Hustler G7-144 antenna.

Side mounted on the tower are two dipole elements from a '4-pole' VHF array.  These were used for Johns hamshack transceivers.  On the left lower side arm is a small 440 whip antenna which is what ultimately became the antenna for the 440.05 Maple City UHF repeater.

These photos were taken after the 147.3 repeater moved from this location and over to the Sugarloaf resort site.  

The 440.05 repeater was a genuine GE Progress Line base station.  This is a workhorse from the 50's-- and should be returned to the smithsonian. This rig is still in the KF8KK antique radio museum-- though it may have been transferred to the LOSF facility.

GE Progress lines, in modern times, were the antipathy of 'hi performance' this unit worked and fulfilled it intended purpose at the time.



Below the Progress line is another of those 'KF8KK' repeater controllers. This particular installation made good use of the linking flexibility built into the design.

Below the controller are two shelves with transceivers on them.  One of the transceivers was a TAD 3w VHF Low unit set to operate on the 29.92 10m FM repeater channel.  10FM was open a fair amount in the early 90's and the Virgin Island repeater could be worked this way.

On the other shelf where two more VHF hi-band transceivers.  What frequencies these had in them escapes me at the moment.  One of them was likely used to pick up the output of the 147.3 repeater as part of the cross linking scheme.

At the bottom of the rack is a four cavity UHF Sinclair duplexer.

Not shown in this photo is the HF Remote base which was remotely tied in from the main hamshack inside the house via some twisted pairs.

The back view of the rack isn't OSHA approved to close your eyes-- that old GE Progress line was a vacuum tube rig-- high voltages abound!
Just for grins, this photo is of what normally is found in those old 'art deco' Motorola base station racks from the 50's and 60's. 

This particular setup is an old 'Sensicon A' series base station.  It looks like a VHF Low band 60w model to me.   I'm not quite sure where I obtained this gem. 

That's an old Teletype ASR33 to it's left.

These old Motorola racks are quite handy, and the ones shown here are still in use in various IOOK repeater systems.