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Operation of VE6AO (Emergency Power Mode). CARA DX Meeting May 4, 2011 Michael Ross VE6TC . VE6AO Main HF Stations. Agenda . Accessing the property Generator connection Operating position setup North station emergency power mode Station operation Creature comforts Station shutdown .

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Operation of VE6AO (Emergency Power Mode)

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Operation of VE6AO(Emergency Power Mode)

CARA DX Meeting May 4, 2011

Michael Ross VE6TC

VE6AO Main HF Stations


  • Accessing the property

  • Generator connection

  • Operating position setup

  • North station emergency power mode

  • Station operation

  • Creature comforts

  • Station shutdown

Getting access to the station

  • Members have 24/7/365 access.

  • Complete a CARA membership form.

  • Complete a key fob agreement form.

  • Give or email to Mike ve6tc@rac.ca

  • $10 key fob refundable deposit (option on membership form).

  • Or accompany an existing member who has access.

Accessing the property

  • Open the gate combination padlock using the 4 digit combination XXXX.

  • Push on the loop then pull to open the padlock.

  • Open the gate then spin the combination so the code is not showing and hang the lock on the gate.

Accessing the building

  • Swipe your key fob on the grey striker to the left of the basement door.

  • (If there is a power failure and the UPS battery has run out, you will need to get someone with a physical key to let you enter the building).

  • Open the door and immediately enter the security code XXXX on the keypad to your right.

  • Confirm the continuous tone stops or re-enter the security code.

  • If you unintentionally set off the alarm, the alarm company will call the phone on the wall. Answer the phone and when asked, give them your name and security system password XXXX.

  • If you do not answer the phone when the alarm company calls, they will send a guard and charge us for the visit.

To enter the radio rooms

  • To enter the radio rooms, swipe your key fob on the grey striker at left of the inner basement door.

  • (If there is a power failure and the UPS battery has run out, you will need to get someone with a physical key to let you enter the radio rooms)

  • Open the key security box on the inside of the inner basement door using the combination XXX to retrieve the keys to open the equipment security boxes and tool box.

To open the combination key box

  • Rotate left (counter clockwise) two turns.

  • Stop at the first letter X.

  • Rotate right (clockwise) one full turn past the first letter to the second letter X.

  • Rotate left (counter clockwise) directly to the third letter X.

  • Push the button to open the key box and take the box cover and keys with you.

To access the station security boxes

  • To open the toolbox use the small key with the black plastic end.

  • To open the 3 equipment security boxes, use the larger silver key.

  • To open the VHF amplifier security box, use the two small gold keys.

  • Insert the silver key and rotate right (clockwise) to unlock.

  • Remove the key and put it somewhere you can find it when leaving.

Generator connection - North Station

  • Open the blind on the radio room window.

  • Remove the wooden window slider blockers.

  • Open the window and slide the 110 V and 220 V power cord plug ends out the window.

  • Unplug the North and South station 110 V power bars from the wall and plug into the orange extension cord, to the right of the North station.

  • Unplug the North station Alpha Amplifier 220 V power cord from the wall and plug into the white 220 V extension cord receptacle.

Generator setup – North station

  • Unload generator from the vehicle.

  • Place on the ground beside the stairwell.

  • Connect ground wire to generator ground.

  • Start the generator following the instructions.

  • Then plug in 110 V and 220 V power cords to generator.

Generator connection - North station

North tower operating position equipment stowed

North tower operating position setup

  • If you are the only operator in the station, use the right hand station.

  • Using the large silver key from the lockbox, unlock the station console(s).

  • Place the two red desktop inserts into the lid of the box to form a table top.

  • Remove the computer monitor, headphones, mouse and foot switch.

  • Put the monitor base under the desktop insert in front of the computer.

  • Put the wooden spacers under the other desktop inserts to level the two inserts.

  • Pull the sliding equipment shelf forward.

North tower operating position equipment operational

To start the computer logging program

  • Turn on the computer and monitor.

  • After loading all the start up files double click on N1MM logging program icon at desktop bottom right.

  • If you are casually operating, i.e. not in a contest, the log to use is DX 01/04/2010.

  • If this is not the log that is loaded, push File>Open existing log and select above file.

  • If the transmitter keys up while N1MM is loading, push the ESC key or step on the footswitch.

  • To operate RTTY click on the Microham icon in the bottom left toolbar, select RTTY

To turn things on

  • Turn on the W2IHY equalizer (if it is turned off).

  • Turn on the rotor controllers (the top controller switch is on the back right).

  • Turn on the amplifier using the ON/OFF button (left most power switch).

  • Wait for 180 seconds before transmitting while the amplifier warms up.

  • Turn on the radio by pushing and holding the power button for 2 seconds. (top left)

  • Push the operate button on the amplifier.

Alpha 9500 Amplifier& FT-2000 Transceiver

To set up on a frequency

  • Push the band you want to operate on the amplifier top left.

  • Confirm the band you selected matches the antenna selected on amp bottom left.

  • If band and antenna is different, pick the correct antenna.

  • Pick a clear frequency and after listening a few minutes, ask if the frequency is in use.

  • Adjust the power output on the radio to drive the amplifier to the desired output power.

  • Maximum power allowed is 2250 W PEP in single tower mode and 1125 W each, in two tower mode.

Station logging hints

  • Remember to always use the station call sign VE6AO and log all contacts made.

  • Log the station call sign, report given, report received, name, state and other comments.

  • Hit the enter button to log the contact.

In power outage use North station only, if only one 5 kW generator used

North station two tower mode (not with only one 5 kW generator)

Station operation

  • Push the footswitch to transmit.

  • Adjust the mic gain to stay in ALC range.

  • Adjust the receiver using right AF gain control.

  • Adjust the RF power at bottom left outer knob.

  • Change bands by pushing the band buttons.

  • Change modes by pushing the mode buttons.

  • The Alpha 9500 amplifier will auto tune and select the correct antenna.

Creature comforts

  • Water – Do not drink the tap water. Drink bottled water only. Water in blue containers in the outer radio room is not for drinking!

  • Food – Only microwave noodle soups in stock.

  • Sleep – There are a couple of couches upstairs.

  • Heat – Thermostat is between the washrooms. The space heater on the floor is to keep your feet warm, (from commercial power only).

  • Emergency Lighting – Flashlight and black desk lamp above North station, when connected to generator.

  • Washrooms – At the far end of the basement.

  • 3 Sump Pumps – Monitor sump pit water levels if power fails.

  • Security – Access control system, alarm system, video monitoring.

  • Telephone – Shaw internet phone.

  • Internet – Shaw hard wired and wireless internet.

  • Television – Shaw cable TV available in outer room.

Station shutdown

When you are ready to leave:

  • Make sure the tool cabinet is locked, or lock it.

  • Make sure the window blind in the radio room is down or lower it.

  • Make sure all equipment boxes are closed and locked.

  • Make sure the tool chest is locked.

Station shutdown

  • Close all equipment security boxes and lock them by rotating the key left (counter clockwise)until the latch engages and the key reached the “locked line” on the lock cylinder.

  • If the key does not reach the locked line, push the door shut firmly and wiggle it till the key turns to the locked line. It is best to make one quick, firm, continuous rotation of the key, to properly engage the lock.

Station shutdown

  • Make sure the webcam computer is on and the camera program is running, indicated by a green light in a camera icon in the bottom right toolbar.

  • If the light is red or the camera program is not running, restart the webcam program by double clicking on the webcam icon.

  • Wait for the camera to connect then push the START button.

  • Close the camera window.

  • Turn off the monitor. Leave the computer ON.

Webcam Computer

Station shutdown

  • Leave the radio room lights on.

  • Leave the inner radio room door open.

  • Leave the outer radio room lights on.

  • Put the keys and key security box front cover back on the key box on the inner basement door.

  • Rotate the combination lock left (cc) 2 turns.

  • Confirm the front of the key security box is securely closed.

Station shutdown

  • Leave the outer radio room.

  • Close and confirm the outer radio room metal door is latched and locked.

  • If you have opened the front door, ensure the security bar is back on the door, the doors are both closed and the upper and lower manual deadbolts are engaged.

  • If you have changed the temp setting on the thermostat, change it back before leaving.

  • Leave the basement lights off.

To exit the building

  • With the outer basement door CLOSED:

  • Enter the security alarm code XXXX , on the keypad to the left of the door.

  • Leave the building through the basement door.

  • Confirm the system is armed by listening for quick beeps from the keypad.

  • Quickly exit the outer basement door and confirm the door is latched and locked.

  • Confirm you hear the alarm system beeping from outside the basement door.

To exit the property:

  • The last key fob holder out of the parking lot should:

  • Open the gate combination lock using the 4 digit padlock combination XXXX.

  • Push on the loop then pull to open the padlock.

  • Close the gate and re-lock the combination lock onto the gate.

  • Push on the loop and spin the combination randomly to lock it.

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