The WI9MRC repeater has been a Milwaukee icon for close to 50 years. From its early beginnings as a mobile antenna on a 400’ tower, to a multi-site voted receive system it’s worn many hats. Due to the nature of clubs, people, and different ideas things did not always work as well as they could. Changes in membership, family priorities, and lack of time are all things that can affect the ability to do equipment maintenance. On top of personal obligations, things like outdated equipment, lack of documentation, years of hastily made field repairs, and limited site access make the operation of a club repeater a challenge.
In the early winter months of 2021, the long-neglected WI9MRC repeater singled it was tired. Site visits and a general assessment of the system drew the conclusion it was on life support. After many discussions, debates, and planning the decision was made to start from scratch. It was no longer cost-effective to dump money into a dying relic.
On February 6th, 2022 the WI9MRC Technical committee, along with the control operators installed a new Motorola Quantar as the foundation for the new repeater. We are pleased with the performance; the system is working better than it has in years. Range, audio clarity, and signal stability are welcome additions. As of May first the entire repeater has been replaced, along with the Antenna, Feedline, and Duplexer. Our most recent addition is a battery bank capable of sustaining the repeater for 30 days off the grid, a welcome addition with the spring storm season in full swing.
The Milwaukee Repeater utilizes 146.31 MHz in, 146.91 MHz out with a PL of 127.3 Hz.