WIRES (Wide-Coverage Internet Repeater Enhancement System) is an Internet communication system which expands the range of amateur radio communication. For WIRES-X operation, an amateur node station connecting to the Internet is used as an access point connecting your wireless communication to the Internet. Your station can communicate with other amateur stations all over the world using a node within your radios range.
Your Spout Springs Repeater has a node also on this system, allowing world-wide contacts to be made over the associations 2-Meter repeaters, and your own Technician license!
“Will I have to buy a new radio?”
~Absolutely not! Analog users (the majority of us) can access the system. Wires-X on the repeater is Analog, therefor attempts to connect to the repeaters in Digital mode will be ignored. There are digital repeaters in our area, so be sure to check out the local repeater listings we have published HERE.
“Can I turn the Wires-X System On/Off when I want to?”
~Not really! Because the SSRA is always connected/enabled, and we are usually in our own room. Pressing your PTT (Push-To-Talk) and pressing * on your DTMF keypad will disconnect the Spout Springs Repeater from the currently connected room (for about 15 seconds). Keep reading…
“Who Can Hear Me?”
~You decide! In short, anyone who is in the currently connected room. When a user connects to a NODE or ROOM”, the room may be full of other users, or only a few. Some might be in the USA, others could be overseas! By default, the SSRA resides in our own room which is #21979, which may or may not have other users in it. Keep reading for more on this.
“Is This Like Echolink or IRLP?”
~Somewhat. In the sense that it is yet another way to link the SSRA to other systems in the world. With Wires-X, a node such as ours at the SSRA, connects to a room, which might already be hosting other nodes. Think of this as something like a “chatroom”. Wires-X (a Yaesu system) provides “Rooms” that often host several other nodes (like ours), some of which might be repeaters or personal nodes, belonging to a single operator. Keep reading…
“Do I need to upgrade my license to use Wires-X?”
~No! A newly licensed Technician class operator can access the system and still make contacts with other states, and countries. A license upgrade is NOT required to use Wires-X. The SSRA does though encourage users to continue their self-education and consider reaching out for upgraded license privileges.
“What if I need the repeater for an emergency?”
~Easy, use the repeater as you normally would, because stations locally still hear you on our repeaters. Or, chose to disconnect the system first, from WIRES-X. Either way, your emergency traffic WILL be heard locally, and possible on other systems as well if we are still connected.
Pressing your PTT, then * , will quickly disconnect (hang-up) anything the SSRA is currently connected to. NOTE, this can only be done in-between transmissions.