This is the Campion Center in Weston, MA, home of the MMRA 146.79, 224.70, and 442.70
repeaters and the receiver for our 10m repeater. 442.70 serves as the MMRA's HUB #2. The Campion Center was originally built as Weston College, but is now a retirement center for Jesuit priests. In addition to being on a tall hill,
the building is 4 stories high with a tower on the roof!|
The original Weston repeater was constructed by the Marlboro FM Association
back in the late 1960's. In 1971, the association was incorporated as the
Minuteman Repeater Association (MMRA) and it moved the system to its present location.
With continual technical improvements, the Weston repeater has been on the
air for 25 years, and is the flagship station of the MMRA.
Since its inception, Weston operated on 146.820 MHz. However, in
September 2005, MMRA moved the 146.820 frequency pair to its new Brookline
location, and changed Weston's frequency to 146.790. Brookline's high location necessitated
a clearer frequency. '82 was superior to '79 in this regard.
The left-hand rack contains the 10m remote rx & 442.7 HUB2 repeater.
At the top you see the 442.7 duplexer.
Below the duplexer is the 10m remote receiver. This system receives signals on 29.58MHz and transmits them via a UHF link frequncy to the transmitter, which is located at our Marlborough East facility.
The remote receiver controller and power supply are one down from the duplexer. Next is a Mastr II chassis which holds a 29.58 MHz 10m receiver and UHF auxliary link transmitter.
Below that is the SCOM 7330 Controller for 442.7, followed by Astron power supply. Below that is the IRLP node, and finally the Kenwood NXR-810 repeater. The Kenwood generates 6W into the Henry power amplifier below it, which then puts 50W into the duplexer. At the very bottom of the rack is the link transceiver, which allows an RF connection between HUB2 and HUB1.
HUB2, 442.700, originally went on the air on December 16, 2006. The Kenwood repeater was installed on December 29, 2020.
The right-hand rack contains the 2m and 222 repeaters.
The 222 duplexers are at the top of the rack, the Spectra Engineering MX800 repeater is directly below them.
Next is the SCOM 7330 controller which currently controls the 146.79, 224.70, and link radio.
The link radio is directly below the controller. The brass colored cabinet near the bottom is the Mastr II 2m repeater (now longer in service - see the next photo). At the bottom is the Astron 50A power supply.
|Due to intermittent and previously repaired but now recurring issues with the Mastr II amplifier, WES is currently on the air with MMRA's spare DR1X repeater. Output power is reduced to 20W instead of the nominal 50W. At the May 2022 meeting, membership will be voting to approve a permanent replacement system. If the motion passes, the club will be purchasing a Kenwood NXR-710 repeater and Henry power amp (identical to the system recently installed at the quincy site.|
The main tower is on the left in the photo. The 146.790 DB224 is at the top. Below it and on the right side-arm is the 224.7 antenna and below it on the same side-arm is an ancient dipole array which we use for the HUB2 to HUB1 link system. On the left is the black fiberglass antenna which the main antenna for HUB2. Out of sight, even lower on the tower is a UHF corner reflector used for the 146.79/224.70 link to the main HUB.
There is a smaller 21 foot mast on the corner of the building which has
the 10m receiver antenna on the top and the UHF link (not visible) for it below.
On March 30th, 1996, an MMRA work crew descended on the site to put up a new antenna. Shown here is the view of the site with the old Station Master antenna, with the work crew on the tower.
This photo, and the photos that follow, were taken by Chris Conti, N1NVL, during that session. Shown here are the MMRA's own tower monkeys: Bob Feltmate, WA1ZJE (on top) and Bryan Cerqua, W1BRI (down below).
Also in this photo, behind the work crew, is the side-mounted 222 MHz repeater antenna.
The site is linked back to the hub of the MMRA network, the W1MRA/R 449.925 repeater in Marlboro, MA, via the 440 MHz corner reflector antenna.
In this photo, work begins on prepping the new antenna, a Decibel Products
DB-224 4-bay open-dipole antenna.
The coax jumpers between the antenna elements are securely taped to the
Unlike a typical fiberglass antenna, this antenna will withstand years of flexing, which it will encounter mounted at the top of the tower. The antenna is 21.5' long, weighs 32 lbs, rated for 100 MPH winds, and gives a 6 dB omnidirectional gain.
|In the photo to the right, Al Kunian, KA1AL, a former repeater trustee, looks over the new antenna prior to its installation. David Croll, KT1X, is shown walking in the background.|
|Here, tower monkeys (WA1ZJE and W1BRI) successfully install the new antenna at the very top of the tower. From there, they can look due East right into Boston!|