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NEAR-Fest I - Help Us Solve A Problem...




 
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Author Topic: NEAR-Fest I - Help Us Solve A Problem...  (Read 4228 times)
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W1RC
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« on: April 17, 2007, 07:51:50 AM »

A situation has arisen that is causing us some concern and the NEAR-Fest I organizing team is asking for your inpoot and assistance.

There are no public address facilities at Deerfield.  The Fair Association felt that it was not worth the expense of installing speakers and wires to a central point because the grounds are only used by them for only one week a year.

Like most of us I always ASSUMED that the horns we saw (and heard) on the poles at Deerfield, Rainchester and Hopkinton were part of the fairgrounds and the Hosstraders only had to connect their PA equipment to these wires and were in business.

However the reality of it is that Bob W1GWU had to install all those speakers and run wires to the sound trailer EVERY TIME the Hosstraders event was held.  For many years Bob operated a sound service business and I recall seeing him at other events, including the Deerfield Fair, where he was providing public address services.  In addition to everything else he did with the Hosstraders, Bob donated his efforts and provided this service at all their events.  He told me that he had to install (and un-install) over 100 horns at Hopkinton in order to provide PA service that covered the entire fairground.  I can't even imagine how much time this took to set up before and take down after the actual event.  I don't even want to think what it would cost NEAR-Fest to contract with a professional to supply and set up this equipment.

We have three, possibly four hours before the gates open at 9:00 Friday morning to get this set up and working.

Our Director of On-Site Communication Engineering Services, Tim Smith, WA1HLR, has designed an ingenious system that utilizes radio (of all things) and a series of Public Address "Modules" to be strategically located throughout the Grounds.  His master station consists of an AM (what else!) broadcast band low power transmitter operating on 650 KHz.  The Modules consist or old AM car radios with a 12VDC power supply, speaker and wire antenna neatly packaged in a box.  These can be easily attached to a pole with power outlets (of which there are plenty) at Deerfield.  Set-up and tear-down time us less than an hour.  Cost is negligable.

However with less than three weeks to go we don't have very many of these "sound modules" ready to go and here's where you can help.

1. Bring a "Boom-Box" and set it up on your table.  We will keep the messages fairly brief so not as to annoy you and your company.  However there will be two micro-broadcasters operating on FM during NEAR-Fest I.  They have offered to broadcast  any official messages for the duration of the event so if you want entertainment and official messages this option will be available.

2. If you have any old AM car radios, speakers and a cheap 12VDC power supply you can build a "NEAR-Fest Sound Module" and bring it along.  The antenna can be a piece of wire inside the box.  You can use a cardboard box to contain it temporarily and make a more permanent housing for it over the summer.  We can then tape these to the poles for the event.

3.  Tim has a 100 Watt PA amplifier that allegedly works.  He says that the three PA horns he has "need work".  We will need this for the traditional PA system we will ahve operating in the area around the NEAR-Fest I Command Center during the event and also for the Prize Drawing ceremonies.  IF you have any such equipment and are willing to loan them to us we will be appropriately grateful.

4.  There will also be an ancillary P.E.W.S. system in place, primarily Friday evening and into the early hours of Saturday.  This will be a most important feature especially during the social events that will be taking place.  In order to avail yourself of the P.E.W.S. system advisories you will need a 2m FM radio whose receiver has a CTCSS (PL) decoder.  If you plan to host or attend any of these events you would be well advised to have this equipment operational so as to have this critical P.E.W.S. capability.  This will be explained in greater detail by Engineer Tim Smith shortly.

Thanks for reading this lengthy diatribe but I am sure that with your help we can provide efficient and satisfactory on-site communication with a minimum of expense and set-up/take-down time.

Please e-mail me if you can help.  w1rc@near-fest.com

73,

MrMike, W1RC
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« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2007, 11:10:24 AM »

 Thats a great idea for a Public Broadcast Emergency Service  (PUBES) for the Fest.... ..    klc
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Todd, KA1KAQ
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« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2007, 01:14:19 PM »

Don't forget that RCA PA we talked about a couple months back, Mike. Also 2 large horns, including the one off my old ambulance. I may be able to lay my mitts on two more of those big PA horns too, but hadn't heard back so I figured you were set.

If you're going the remote-radio-route, you won't need them.
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W1RKW
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« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2007, 04:56:11 PM »

Go wireless man!
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« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2007, 09:13:09 PM »

Forget the PA. Don't need it. Just post a 2 meter CB frequency and your cell phone number if anyone needs to contact central control. All you need is a couple of pre-programmed numbers for the Fire Department Rescue squad and the Police Department. The Rockingham County Sheriff's Department in Brentwood does the dispatching for those guys so you probably only need that number. Or just 911. I keep forgetting that we spent so much time setting that up.
Keith
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« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2007, 10:00:15 PM »

A situation has arisen that is causing us some concern and the NEAR-Fest I organizing team is asking for your inpoot and assistance.

[snip]
Our Director of On-Site Communication Engineering Services, Tim Smith, WA1HLR, has designed an ingenious system that utilizes radio (of all things) and a series of Public Address "Modules" to be strategically located throughout the Grounds.  His master station consists of an AM (what else!) broadcast band low power transmitter operating on 650 KHz.

Mike,

I suggest you ask the tailgaters to leave their car radios on and tuned to 650 KHz.

Bill W1AC
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« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2007, 12:35:29 AM »

I don't think they have a PA system that covers every square foot at Dayton.

Most outdoor hamfests that I have ever attended had one small PA system in the area where the tickets and prize drawings etc took place.  Those interested in those events gathered within earshot, and everybody else, in the flea market and other activities, went about their business and didn't pay any attention to it.
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« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2007, 01:35:29 AM »

Quote
Our Director of On-Site Communication Engineering Services, Tim Smith, WA1HLR, has designed an ingenious system that utilizes radio (of all things) and a series of Public Address "Modules" to be strategically located throughout the Grounds.  His master station consists of an AM (what else!) broadcast band low power transmitter operating on 650 KHz.

Let me guess. Instead of Big Ben chimes on the hour like the BBC, this station's ID will be the sound of urination into a Mason jar.  Undecided
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« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2007, 03:44:21 AM »

I don't think they have a PA system that covers every square foot at Dayton.

Most outdoor hamfests that I have ever attended had one small PA system in the area where the tickets and prize drawings etc took place.  Those interested in those events gathered within earshot, and everybody else, in the flea market and other activities, went about their business and didn't pay any attention to it.

I don't recall any outside PA system in Dayton over the last several years. Actually I don't recall any outside PA system ever. But, then again, it might have been too much party the night before.
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