Black Hawk County-New Trunking System?

Status
Not open for further replies.

bar422

Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2003
Messages
5
Location
IA
I just seen a post regarding a Black Hawk County E-911 trunking Project 25 System going in. It also says that all of the county's law enforcement will be on it. Does this mean they are getting off of the Racom system? I know the city (Waterloo) does have their own LTR system now and the notes say that they may leave their system for the new one. This is the first I have heard of it. I know they just approved a ALOT of money for radio equipment. Anyone else heard anything about this?
 

LID109

Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2004
Messages
21
Location
Midwest
the admin who posted that information is from Ann Arbor, Michigan. I hardly belive he has ANY idea what he's talking about.
 

bar422

Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2003
Messages
5
Location
IA
Well if you know what's going on why not tell us about it. I notice it says your location says Nevada so,I guess,do you know more about it?
 

pm1072

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2008
Messages
70
Location
USA
In a radio study somewhere, I read not too long ago done for the state of Iowa, that there were plans to construct a state wide P25 trunking system in 700/800 MHz band, likely very similar to the State of Illinois StarCom21. Which would be beneficial, because if it was a Motorola-owned system like StarCom21, it would easily allow for some type of interface for Iowa units (particularly those in the Eastern part of Iowa) to roam into IL and still maintain radio coverage with their comm centers, even if they were in large metro areas such as Chicago.

Yeah, as the previous poster above me mentioned: Nevada vs. Michigan I'd be curious to see why honestly either one would know for certain on any changes/proposed changes taking place within the State of Iowa/BH County for that matter.

So yes, feel free to tell us more.
 
Last edited:

w0fg

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Mar 7, 2005
Messages
462
Location
Decorah, IA
Folks from Iowa usually remember there is Nev-A-da the town and then there is Nev-ah-da the state, but maybe they don't teach Iowa history in schools these days. Judging from the other poster's screen name I'd be willing to bet he knows exactly what he is talking about . Whether or not he's premitted to share that information is something else.
 

bar422

Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2003
Messages
5
Location
IA
Yeah,right after I posted that I thought the same thing,but I guess if LID109 know whats going on and can't or won't tell anyone why bother even posting a comment. This certainly sounds like something a Racom employee would pull. They always think everything is top secret ( unless you know an employee).
 

Thunderbolt

Global Database Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Dec 23, 2001
Messages
6,920
Location
Ann Arbor, Michigan
The information that I received, comes from two sources within the public safety community in Black Hawk County. They are adamant about remaining anonymous for obvious reasons. Nevertheless, look for some changes to come to the county in the future. Likewise, the state of Iowa, wants to implement a statewide P25 trunking system.

Currently, there are two regional Project 25 trunking systems that will affect or are serving western Iowa. The first is ORION, which is located Omaha, Nebraska and will include Pottawatomie County in the near future. In addition, Harrison and Mills Counties are strongly considering moving to this system in the future, to enhance interoperability with neighboring counties, especially to the west.

Secondly, the STARCOMM TRS, which is located in the Sioux City, South Dakota area, currently serves Woodbury County. This regional Project 25 TRS, will include five additional counties in Northwest Iowa in it's Phase II expansion plan. The most likely candidates are: Cherokee, Lyon, Monona, Plymouth, and Sioux Counties.

Currently, the neighboring states of Illinois, Minnesota, and South Dakota are constructing and operating statewide Project 25 systems. Likewise, Missouri and Wisconsin are planning to follow the same route, in building similar networks, based on Project 25 protocol standards. Therefore, it would only make sense that Iowa has decided to follow the same path. Moreover, it would allow any unit from Iowa, to still have some form of communications when traveling to these neighboring states.

One problem that the Racom system will be forced to cope with, is that M/A-COM, has stated that they will not be providing support to their analog EDACS systems in the future. This means that EDACS system users are going to be forced to either upgrade to OpenSky, Project 25, or ProVoice digital technology. Sadly, we all know that the former platform has some really serious issues, just look at what has happened in the states of New York and Pennsylvania. Nonetheless, with so many states following the trend to Project 25 systems, I can envision Iowa making the same logical choice, especially when state officials are strongly advocating this technology for future use.

IMHO, since the state is looking at going Project 25, it would make sense that older public safety trunking systems that are nearing the end of their serviceability, will be upgraded to follow suit. Likewise, Motorola plans on discontinuing support for their older analog Type-II trunking systems in 2009. This will expedite the need to upgrade or place the older technology, especially when parts become scare, or are completely unavailable.

Of course this brings up the really big question: How will Iowa build their statewide trunking system?

At present, the state of Iowa has not signed any contract to build this system. Henceforth, there are several avenues that are open for them to follow:


  1. Contract with M/A-COM, Motorola, or another vendor, possibly even a third-party to build a statewide TRS, and then lease air-time from them. This is the case in Illinois and South Carolina.
  2. Build the system with state funds and federal grants in multiple phases, and completely own the entire infrastructure.
  3. Construct the system as part of regional interoperability networks, much like what is currently happening in the state of Arizona. Once these regional networks are completed by the local authorities, the state of Iowa will step-in and take over all future maintenance and upgrade costs; thus, owning the system.
  4. Become part of the IWN TRS, and share costs with the federal government to build the system out across the state. Currently, such plans are underway in Montana, Oregon, and Wyoming with their statewide trunking networks.
Either way, the future of public safety communications is going be very interesting in the Hawkeye State.
 
Last edited:

pm1072

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2008
Messages
70
Location
USA
Yes, very good comments there Thunderbolt. Nice to hear that apparently you have accurate enough sources providing you information. Yes, you are pretty well spot on about the antiquated technology currently used in the state of Iowa. There's at least one company that uses the word "Digital" since that's part of the accronym of what their system is, regardless it's probably close to 99% analog, with few talkgroups that are in unscannable digital, such as for investigations, federal agencies-security, etc. Funny how many of their customers at first thought their communications, were truly digital and private, including i-calls. They soon found out that wasn't the case. I hear very little use of i-call like I did in the early days. There was some quite interesting ****e on there.

I'm going out on a limb and say that it's likely the Iowa 700/800 system to become the straight 9600 baud P-25 digital standard, such as Starcom21 in IL, as well as the statewide system that they have in place in the state of Indiana as well. I can see the need for encryption to be used on the most sensitive groups, as currently used. When it's all said and done, the public should still be able to monitor routine police traffic, minus the investigative and narc groups from my standpoint.

I know in some of those states, though their systems are owned by Motorola, they do have the option to use the Motorola units or go with the EF Johnson models as well. I've heard the Johnsons are a good radio, a bit cheaper and are interchangeable with the Motorola XTS chargers and batteries.

Whether it's for the state of just the Black Hawk County area, I can see it coming soon. There is no true P25 going on in the state and as far as I know EDACS being antiquated cannot have regular P25 talkgroups, that are open source like Motorola, EF Johnson, or even Kenwood for that matter.

Anyways, my .02 cents worth on this topic. Take care!
 

pm1072

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2008
Messages
70
Location
USA
Thunderbolt, just got done reading about the STARCOMM system in the Sioux City area, the news and the system specs. I thought at one time that Racom ruled the system up there? I guess after 9/11 with the push for handing out more homeland security $$ must have brought that about, along with the ability to use the P25 CAI (common air interface), which isn't supported by antiquated EDACS. Cedar Rapids, has a P25 system that's been up for years, a multi-site in fact, and other than during the floods it kicks the pants off anything Racom analog EDACS can, as far as interoperability.

I've also heard through the grapevine that Racom's service contracts are unreasonably costly, as well as the pricing of accessories, such as batteries. Vehicle installs too must be quite costly from them, as I've seen pictures of radio shops located in Iowa that aren't MA/COM dealers that are actually doing installs for departments that have Racom/MA/COM radios in their vehicles for that matter. So that's gotta speak volumes as well.

Once again, another .02 cents worth....so we're now up to a .04. Perhaps we'll be up to a $.25 in this discussion. :)
 

Thunderbolt

Global Database Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Dec 23, 2001
Messages
6,920
Location
Ann Arbor, Michigan
After receiving additional information from my two sources, who are law enforcement officers in Black Hawk County; hence, it was in their opinion that their department was going to a Project 25 TRS. However, this is apparently not the case. Likewise, they have indicated that the new 700/800 MHz, radios they received are from M/A-COM. The new portables and mobiles will have the ability to operate on the following modes:

  • Analog
  • Project 25 conventional
  • Project 25 trunking
  • ProVoice
  • EDACS
Apparently, these new radios will fully support operations on both Racom, and the future state of Iowa Project 25 TRS. Conversely, with EDACS being phased out by M/A-COM, I would look for some major changes to come to the Racom TRS, least of which, would be the rebanding of various sites around the system.

73s

Ron
 
Last edited:

pm1072

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2008
Messages
70
Location
USA
After receiving additional information from my two sources, who are law enforcement officers in Black Hawk County; hence, it was in their opinion that their department was going to a Project 25 TRS. However, this is apparently not the case. Likewise, they have indicated that the new 700/800 MHz, radios they received are from M/A-COM. The new portables and mobiles will have the ability to operate on the following modes:

  • Analog
  • Project 25 conventional
  • Project 25 trunking
  • ProVoice
  • EDACS
Apparently, these new radios will fully support operations on both Racom, and the future state of Iowa Project 25 TRS. Conversely, with EDACS being phased out by M/A-COM, I would look for some major changes to come to the Racom TRS, least of which, would be the rebanding of various sites around the system.

73s

Ron
Yeah, they're probably going for something like the 7100P (I might have the model name wrong) which are close to being a $5900 portable radio from what I heard somewhere in the forums...or they're going to the Jaguar series. Nonetheless, they'll be ready if the state does go P25 trunking. I don't think they have too many problems with reception of the current RACOM EDACS system up there, as when i infrequently visit the area the units usually sound pretty good to me. Heard years ago that Unclear transmissions/drop-outs, and lots of problems existed up in Black Hawk. Suppose those are thankfully gone these days with the addition of more towers. As for the new portables, my guess is flexibility is the key and if a lot of the portables are aging it's time to replace them with something that's upgradeable in the future.
 

w0fg

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Mar 7, 2005
Messages
462
Location
Decorah, IA
I monitor Blackhawk Co/Waterloo frequently with a M-RK portable. The signal quality on that system is excellent. I can't remember the last time I heard dispatch have to ask for a repeat because of a poor signal from a mobile or portable. Phasing in P25 compatible equipment would make sense in the long term, but it would likely be driven by the availability of federal grants rather than a need to upgrade the existing system. System development scuttlebutt from patrol officers needs to be taken with a large grain of salt as, in my experience, very few have any real understanding of the technology involved.
 

bar422

Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2003
Messages
5
Location
IA
I agree on the signal quality,it is good (my M-RK monitors it fine).....then again it has only taken over 10 years to get it that way. For what Racom charges them every month per radio it should be. I have friends in Public Safety that use these radios everyday and most of them certainly don't rely on them or trust them. I heard Black Hawk Dispatch just the other day ask an officer to repeat his traffic 3 or 4 times and they still couldn't hear him! Wait until the next storm rolls trough and see which site goes down first.The members of the board should definitely be listening to these people but they are busy trying to find ways to come up with more money to fund this and now they recently approved a bunch more money for new radios. But at least some of the agencies are figuring out that they can get accessories and installs done for alot better price and are going to other shops. P25 compatable equipment is certainly the way to go,and just like it was said,this will come down to money and where they can come up with it.
 

splash1

Member
Joined
Sep 7, 2005
Messages
416
Location
Eastern Iowa
Latest info found on Iowa grants page for Blackhawk co.

http://home.att.net/~ilgrant/

IA Grants 8/20/08

IA Grants 8/21/08


BLACK HAWK COUNTY E911
715 MULBERRY ST.
WATERLOO IA 50703

Callsign: WQJF670
Radio Service: YE-YE

APPLICANT IS A COUNTY LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCY AND WILL USE RADIO
STATION TO COORDINATE ALL COUNTY AND CITY LAW ENFORCEMENT COMMUNICATIONS.

Action: ISSUED


Area of Operation
----------------------------------------------------------------------
1 FIXED 422956.0N 921552.0W WATERLOO BLACK HAWK IA
2 MOBILE 45.0 KMRA around site
3 UNKNOWN 6 IA

Pwr ERP # of # of (A)nalog
Ref Class Freq Out Out Units Pagers (D)igital
----------------------------------------------------------------------
1 FB2C 856.46250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 857.46250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 857.71250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 858.46250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 858.71250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 859.71250 100 200 1 0 AD
2 MO 811.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 812.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 812.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 813.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 813.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 814.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 856.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 857.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 857.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 858.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 858.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 859.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
3 FX1 811.46250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 812.46250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 812.71250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 813.46250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 813.71250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 814.71250 035 050 65 0 AD

Rick L
 

pm1072

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2008
Messages
70
Location
USA
Latest info found on Iowa grants page for Blackhawk co.

http://home.att.net/~ilgrant/

IA Grants 8/20/08

IA Grants 8/21/08


BLACK HAWK COUNTY E911
715 MULBERRY ST.
WATERLOO IA 50703

Callsign: WQJF670
Radio Service: YE-YE

APPLICANT IS A COUNTY LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCY AND WILL USE RADIO
STATION TO COORDINATE ALL COUNTY AND CITY LAW ENFORCEMENT COMMUNICATIONS.

Action: ISSUED


Area of Operation
----------------------------------------------------------------------
1 FIXED 422956.0N 921552.0W WATERLOO BLACK HAWK IA
2 MOBILE 45.0 KMRA around site
3 UNKNOWN 6 IA

Pwr ERP # of # of (A)nalog
Ref Class Freq Out Out Units Pagers (D)igital
----------------------------------------------------------------------
1 FB2C 856.46250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 857.46250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 857.71250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 858.46250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 858.71250 100 200 1 0 AD
1 FB2C 859.71250 100 200 1 0 AD
2 MO 811.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 812.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 812.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 813.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 813.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 814.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 856.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 857.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 857.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 858.46250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 858.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
2 MO 859.71250 035 050 800 0 AD
3 FX1 811.46250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 812.46250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 812.71250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 813.46250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 813.71250 035 050 65 0 AD
3 FX1 814.71250 035 050 65 0 AD

Rick L

Looks like some frequencies to prep for rebanding. Analog or Digital capable. So probably be the same as it is, making the system capable of the normal analog and occasional Aegis stuff for undercover/covert use. Someone will have to get up there and run etrunker one of these days when they go on air.
 

splash1

Member
Joined
Sep 7, 2005
Messages
416
Location
Eastern Iowa
new update from the Iowa grants page.

WATERLOO, CITY OF
715 MULBERRY
WATERLOO IA 50703

Callsign: WPJS208
Radio Service: YE-YE

APPLICANT IS A GOVERNMENTAL AGENCY IN THE ST OF IA. RADIO EQUIPMENT
WILL BE USED TO COORDINATE PERSONNEL IN THE CTY OF BLACK HAWK.

Action: MODIFIED


Area of Operation
----------------------------------------------------------------------
1 FIXED 422645.0N 922229.7W WATERLOO BLACK HAWK IA
2 UNKNOWN 6 IA
3 MOBILE BLACK HAWK IA 29.0 KMRA around a centerpoint

Pwr ERP # of # of (A)nalog
Ref Class Freq Out Out Units Pagers (D)igital
----------------------------------------------------------------------
1 FB2 851.01250 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 851.16250 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 851.41250 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 851.76250 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 852.17500 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 853.17500 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 853.65000 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 853.90000 050 078 1 0 A
2 FX1 806.01250 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 806.16250 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 806.41250 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 806.76250 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 807.17500 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 808.17500 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 808.65000 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 808.90000 015 060 75 0 A
3 MO 806.01250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 806.16250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 806.41250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 806.76250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 807.17500 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 808.17500 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 808.65000 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 808.90000 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 851.01250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 851.16250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 851.41250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 851.76250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 852.17500 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 853.17500 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 853.65000 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 853.90000 035 070 525 0 A



http://home.att.net/~ilgrant/

Rick L
 

HeartThrobs

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jul 31, 2006
Messages
38
Location
Black Hawk County, Iowa
Waterloo, Iowa Reband Freqs

new update from the Iowa grants page.

WATERLOO, CITY OF
715 MULBERRY
WATERLOO IA 50703

Callsign: WPJS208
Radio Service: YE-YE

APPLICANT IS A GOVERNMENTAL AGENCY IN THE ST OF IA. RADIO EQUIPMENT
WILL BE USED TO COORDINATE PERSONNEL IN THE CTY OF BLACK HAWK.

Action: MODIFIED


Area of Operation
----------------------------------------------------------------------
1 FIXED 422645.0N 922229.7W WATERLOO BLACK HAWK IA
2 UNKNOWN 6 IA
3 MOBILE BLACK HAWK IA 29.0 KMRA around a centerpoint

Pwr ERP # of # of (A)nalog
Ref Class Freq Out Out Units Pagers (D)igital
----------------------------------------------------------------------
1 FB2 851.01250 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 851.16250 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 851.41250 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 851.76250 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 852.17500 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 853.17500 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 853.65000 050 078 1 0 A
1 FB2 853.90000 050 078 1 0 A
2 FX1 806.01250 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 806.16250 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 806.41250 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 806.76250 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 807.17500 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 808.17500 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 808.65000 015 060 75 0 A
2 FX1 808.90000 015 060 75 0 A
3 MO 806.01250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 806.16250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 806.41250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 806.76250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 807.17500 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 808.17500 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 808.65000 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 808.90000 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 851.01250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 851.16250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 851.41250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 851.76250 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 852.17500 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 853.17500 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 853.65000 035 070 525 0 A
3 MO 853.90000 035 070 525 0 A



Radio Grant Pages for the Midwest...midwestgrants.com

Rick L
These are the reband freqs for the City of Waterloo's LTR system (city services, etc.) and not our county law reband freqs. They are active.

If anyone has entered the city's freqs from the RR Database you are missing 851.0125. The omission has been submitted and should be changed soon. (FCC Call Sign: WPJS208)

Myke
 

W0GEN

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jun 14, 2008
Messages
28
Location
Waterloo, IA
I am located in Waterloo, scan with a Grecom PSR-500, it was mentioned that we should run etrunker to determine what is active in this area. Can anyone enlighten me what etrunker is?
Thanks
Bill
 

HeartThrobs

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jul 31, 2006
Messages
38
Location
Black Hawk County, Iowa
Bill,
There is another program like ETrunker called UniTrunker. You can find information at, UniTrunker - The RadioReference Wiki It works with the PSR-500.

My other suggestion would be to search RR for UniTrunker for set-up and problems others have had..

Thanks for your weather station!!! I use it often.

Myke

I am located in Waterloo, scan with a Grecom PSR-500, it was mentioned that we should run etrunker to determine what is active in this area. Can anyone enlighten me what etrunker is?
Thanks
Bill
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top