Information on Remote Repeater Links
Set-up and configuration of a Remote Repeater Link
A Remote Repeater Link (Figure 1) is an analog VHF or UHF transceiver (HT, mobile, or base) configured to provides the Sysop and local users full RF access to the Echolink network over a local repeater that is not already Echolink enabled. The basic configuration consists of a radio;
- Configured in repeater mode (+/- shift on transmit)
- Tuned to the frequency of a repeater within RF range
- Connected via a compatible radio-to-PC interface (same as used for transmitting digital modes) to an Internet connected computer (desktop, laptop, RaspberryPi, tablet, etc.) running Echolink (or compatible variant) software in Sysop mode
- Tone Squelch Encode is set for the repeater being accessed)
Often, older used mobile or inexpensive handheld units are employed, but there are new rigs available with Echolink capability built in. If the repeater to be linked is nearby, very low power and simple antennas can be used to make the connection. These type of links are ideal for deployment in an emergency situation, to extend the coverage of an otherwise isolated repeater.
PROS: Very simple to implement, minimal equipment investment, portable, great for emergency deployment, excellent way to extend the range of a local repeater
CONS: Repeater trustee access required to properly configure the repeater to be "Network Friendly" (waiverable in an emergency situation), primarily operated in VOX - "Voice Operated Xmitter" (transmitter) - mode (COR - "Carrier Operated Relay" - mode keying is preferred, but more complicated).