Our club operates under the rules set forth in the US Government Code of Federal Regulations Title 47, Chapter I, Subchapter D, Part 97, in addition to, our own Constitution and By-laws and operating guidelines and rules outlined below.
Our club Constitution and By-laws are available here for your inspection.
"A repeater is not a public utility - you don’t have a "right" to use it! When you are using someone else’s repeater you are, in effect, a visitor in the owner’s station. So, you should conduct yourself accordingly. If you use that station in a manner that the owner finds objectionable, that person has every right to revoke your privilege of using it!" (Source: The ARRL’s FCC Rule Book)
The owners of the repeater systems, the Officers of this amateur radio club, as well as the site hosts, require that you follow these guidelines while using the WA7DRE affiliated repeaters and facilities:
- Traffic Priority
- Highest: Actual emergency communication. Immediately yield the system to any station declaring an emergency. Offer to help any station declaring an emergency. If you are not actively helping with the emergency, do not transmit.
- Emergency communication nets, drills and practice. Emergency communications personel conducting official business will always have high priority.
- Regularly scheduled nets. Either of local origin, or nets originating from elsewhere on the interconnected network of repeaters.
- Scheduled or unscheduled repeater maintenance and testing.
- Lowest: Routine traffic between licensed amateurs.
- Considerate…never knowingly uses the air in such a way to lessen the pleasure of others.
- Loyal…offers loyalty, encouragement and support to their fellow radio amateurs, the Washington Digital Radio Enthusiaists radio club, and to the American Radio Relay League, through which Amateur Radio is represented.
- Progressive…with knowledge abreast of science. Using a station that is well-built and efficient. Operating practice is above reproach.
- Friendly…slow and patient sending when requested, friendly advice and counsel to the beginner, kindly assistance, cooperation and consideration for the interests of others. These are marks of the amateur spirit.
- Balanced…radio is their hobby. They never allow it to interfere with any of the duties they owe to their home, job, church, school, or community.
- Patriotic…their knowledge and their station are always ready for the service of his country and their community
- If you are unsure how to operate the repeater's features, please don't perform experiments. Ask for help over the air.
- While your callsign is digitally encoded along with your digital audio transmissions, you are encouraged to say your callsign verbally occasionally as well. Some people are driving or cannot look at their transceiver screen to see who is transmitting.
- Do not acknowledge transmissions from unlicensed stations. Do not discuss unlicensed transmissions or interference with others over the air. Persons deliberately causing interference will stop sooner if there is no noticeable effect caused by their interference.
- Control operators are Randy Wilkinson-W4LKS (509-993-7739), and Glen Ahlborn-K1RR (509-216-0666), contact either or both of them if you have concerns about what is currently going on with the repeater.
- Leave plenty of time between key-ups...don't quick-key. This is especially important on D-STAR. Others cannot send link or unlink commands while you are talking. A 3 second pause between transmissions is recommended.
- Kerchunking is OK on D-STAR. Your callsign will be announced over all of the connected links. This is similar to just saying your callsign over the air on an analog repeater system.
- Please be knowledgable about when when nets will occur. Before unlinking the repeater, ask over the air if anyone would mind if you link it to another repeater or reflector.
- Please avoid lengthy conversations or rag-chews on the WA7DRE repeater/gateway system. Especially while it is connected to a reflector, as it usually is. To avoid all D-STAR operators in Washington from having to listen to your long conversations, connect to an unused channel on a reflector. Or connect the repeater directly to the repeater that your friend is using. Also consider buying or making a local hotspot for your home or neighborhood so you don't have to use exscessive time on our repeater.
- Soap boxing, which goes hand-in-hand with overly long conversations, is when people carry on a conversation on the repeater that is a thinly disguised broadcast. The subject is generally to "put down" an institution, group, or an individual for as wide as possible an audience. This is very objectionable to other repeater users and listeners. Using the club’s repeaters as a platform for soap boxing is unacceptable. Conversations on the repeaters should be friendly ones. Do not make them negative commentaries on institutions, groups, or people. Avoid discussions on inappropriate subjects including politics, sex and religion! Don’t use the repeaters to "put people down." Amateur Radio is not a broadcast medium – 97.113(5)(b).
Are we talking about censorship? No, far from it. A person may have the right to stand on the street and say bad things about someone. They don’t have the same right when they are a guest in that person’s house. When using a WA7DRE repeater, you are a guest operator of our stations. No one has any right to use the club affiliated repeaters in ways that the owners feel are objectionable as described herein.
- Permission to use a WA7DRE affiliated repeater is at the discretion of the repeater owners as well as, the Washington Digital Radio Enthusiasts amateur radio club. Abuse of the repeater system is grounds for your usage privileges to be revoked.
- If your callsign is registered on the WA7DRE gateway, be sure to keep your email address current. If your email address is out of date and email messages we send to you bounce back, your registration will be immediately deleted and you will no longer be able to use D-STAR. Similarly, if you ignore messages from us, or do not reply to our messages, your registration may also be deleted. This will happen even if your government issued amateur radio license is current and valid. We cannot authorize you to use the global D-STAR network unless we can contact you.
- If your callsign is registered on the WA7DRE gateway, and you allow your government issued amateur radio license to expire, your registration will be immediately deleted and you will no longer be able to use D-STAR.
- We cannot register your callsign on our gateway unless you are licensed in the United States. We don't know the rules for amateur radio operators in your country, so we cannot authorize your use of D-STAR. Please seek to become registered at a D-STAR gateway in your country.