Radio at Maker Space

Maker Space is a community owned and run workshop in Newcastle upon Tyne (see our about page).

Interest in radio started with a shared curiosity in short range embedded devices and particularly LoRa which is one of the first readily available technologies to allow license free transmission over longer distances. Over time this has extended into obtaining / dusting down amateur radio licenses particularly from the perspecive of using / understanding current technologies such as Software Defined Radio and digital systems rather than being bound to more traditional paths often associated with big name amateur equipment (remember the Tony Hancock sketch?). We know we are not alone with similar interest groups evident in other Maker groups and recent changes in license conditions and access to on line exams are really assisting the renewed interest in radio building and experimenting.

We’re not a traditional radio club we’re makers who happen to share an interst/fascination with radio technology in the same way as we also share interests in electronics/3d printing/laser cutting etc. If you feel this might be you / how you want to get involved then come along and say hello.

Some of our recent activities include:

  • Digital Mobile Radio (DMR) in amateur spectrum including repeater construction/operation. (three of us succeeded in scratch building the 2m duplexer)
  • Amateur Packet (including APRS and APRS over 70cm LoRa)
  • LoRa / LoRaWAN
  • Paging (POCSAG) in amateur spectrum
  • Home control and other ISM based tech including Zigbee/433MHz controllers
  • Software Defined Radio (mostly dongles, innovative boards and open technologies including GNU Radio and open hardware transceiver designs)
  • Radio Sonde (weather balloon) tracking
  • Marine WEFAX and NAVTEX reception
  • Quad flight control (including FPV)
  • Broadcast technologies (DAB)
  • HF communicaton both digital and traditional (morse) using open equipment designs

In the Amateur (Ham) Radio sphere we operate a number of services covring the centre of Newcastle and Gateshead:

Brandmeister linked DMR repeater GB7MS (2m)

Brandmeister linked DMR repeater GB7XY (70cm)

DAPNET Pager service MB7PNE

APRS over LoRa (70cm) Gateway MB7UMS

While using DMR Makerspace members generally use the informal talk group 23564 .