Remote Shack est. 2011

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Josh

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When I moved out of my parent's home 5 years ago, I didn't leave without the things I liked best about where I'd lived most of my life, these being the ability to monitor railroad radio comms in the area (South of Detroit MI) and the ability to monitor ATCS radio comms (the radio-based railroad signal systems). I started with a mobile radio, phone patch and laptop, but over the years have evolved to the shown setup, which from very top to bottom include:

Cable modem and Wifi/Router, Kenwood NXR710 base radio (used for scanning/monitoring railroad comms), the Astron rack mount 25 amp power supply, below that is a Motorola GTX900 mobile radio used for listening the CSX BCP frequency (basically a data radio), to the right is a Kenwood NX-700 that used to hold the duty of the NXR, but was retired to backup status, or another monitor radio.

Below that is a shelf that holds the iMics that interface with the rack server underneath and the CriticalRF RoIP interface currently connected to the NXR.

The 1U rack server is an newer Intel processor, with 4GB Ram, running windows 10. It hosts a program for the RoIP interface radio, and a couple ATCS feeds passed through railstream. (the 2nd ATCS radio is a remote... it's in a weatherproof box on the chimney).

Underneath that is a shelf holding some paperwork and other junk, and at the bottom of the rack is a 120v 4 outlet power strip with cutout swtiches... but another surge protector/power strip was necessary..

Does anyone recognize this type of rack from any particular company's radio product? It came with a couple shelves and the power strip/power supply at the bottom. There's a SO239 on the bottom with a short run of RG58 to a PL259 that would have attached possibly to a duplexer, if this was a repeater rack originally. I'm not too sure.. it all fits the bill for my functions, even though the hole pattern leaves a lot to be desired.
 

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wd9cms

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That's an impressive set-up, can you control the radios remotely? How do you like CriticalRF RoIP interface?

Thanks,

Bill
 

Josh

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Wyandotte Michigan
In answer to the questions,

When the mobile radio was set up as the base radio, I was able to control it via serial port forwarding and a virtual serial port on my computer. It wasn't always a stable connection such as if either IP changed or an internet outage occurred while running. I'm working on a better solution with the NX710 using a KTI-3 Network interface unit.

The critical RF RoIP product is really nice. I've had it for 5 years now. The software was a bit buggy at first, for instance, at the radio end, the software would keep the radio keyed even after the remote released the PTT key if it ran for too long. Also, if the internet connection dropped, it wouldn't automatically reconnect. This was all resolved, and things are more or less refined to where I have no complaints.

It would be nice to have a product that was both RoIP and function control... but that would most likely be too niche of a market to develop.

-Josh
 
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