Elk City 444.525 UHF machine to Change PL Tones

The WX5BSA 444.525 repeater near Elk City switched from an 88.5 Hz PL tone to 141.3 Hz. This was at the request of Dan K5FVL who has a repeater on the same frequency at Stillwater which likewise used an 88.5 PL tone. The Stillwater machine is part of the TARC Supersystem which is a network of linked repeaters covering eastern Oklahoma and Northwest Arkansas. This link system is vital to support the Eastern Oklahoma - Northwest Arkansas Skywarn net. That in turn supports the National Weather Service Forecast Office during severe weather. The link system does not use a back-bone, but depends on the repeaters listening to each other. With the main repeater being the 443.85 in east Tulsa. It works best if all the repeaters in the system use the same PL tone. Under normal band conditions the Elk City repeater and the Stillwater repeater don't bother each other, but this year in early spring there were some very strong band openings, and things got a little crazy. ORSI informally recommends the 88.5 pl tone for repeaters in the NE part of the state, mainly because the TARC link system established 88.5 as the PL tone around the NE part of the state as the link system was rolled out, and ORSI dropped the co-channel spacing of repeaters from 120 miles to 90 miles with the use of PL tones. Usually more of a concern on two meters than 70 CM, but tropospheric propagation has been unusually strong this year.

FCC rules require that if an uncoordinated repeater causes harmful interference with a coordinated repeater, it is the responsibility of the operator of the uncoordinated repeater to resolve the situation. in this case though both repeaters were coordinated and met all coordination standards. In a case like this the FCC says the trustees of both machines should work together to resolve the situation. ORSI is happy to serve as a mediator in a situation like this. Dan K5FVL and the TARC were willing to lend technical expertise to help the Elk City machine to make the change. We were sure that TARC would alo provide financial assistance to Elk City if they agreed to make the change. ORSI, K5FVL, and TARC sincerely appreciate Gary