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Amateur Radio
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Call Sign Routing

One of the immensely powerful features of D-Star is Call Routing. Essentially the node or Repeater you are working through automatically connects to the Repeater or node where the person you are calling was last heard.

Not only is this feature powerful, but also very desirable, let's compare Callsign Routing with Reflector operation.

reflectorOn a Reflector many Repeaters, hot-spots and nodes are all connected to one Reflector.

As you can see, this works fine, but 2 stations can tie up or block the Reflector at busy times, and that is not desirable. There is no reason why a QSO between 2 amateurs should be retransmitted over 40 or more Repeaters and Hotspots tying up local repeaters for the duration of the QSO

This is where Callsign Routing is so desirable and efficient. Only 2 Repeaters or Hotspots are tied up using call sign routing

To accomplish this using the Icom G2 system, you have to put the callsign of the person you were calling in the URcall field. This in turn connects you to the Repeater or node where the person was last heard.

This works, however it requires the constant swapping of the contents of URcall even if when the information is programmed into memory. With the dawn of DCS Reflectors and CCS routing you can use DTMF numbers to call another station and eliminate this constant swapping of URcall contents..

Prior to  using CCS call routing you must register your call sign. This is a quick process, the only personal information required is your callsign, name, a valid email address and password, After you complete the registration you will be assigned a 4 digit DTMF code. When registering skip the  “Repeater Sysop”, “Repeater Call” and “Repeater Module” fields. Click here to register.

CCSroutingFollowing registration anyone using a CCS enabled node or repeater can attempt to call you using your assigned DTMF code.  It is not necessary to disconnect from a Reflector before placing a CCS call, however it is good practice. To advise other users of your DTMF code it's also good practice to place your DTMF code in the "Suffix" field of your callsign entry on the transceiver, or in your outgoing text message.

To locate an amateur's  DTMF code, search here by their call sign. If the Amateur you are looking for isn't registered they will not appear in the list.

So let's walk through, how to call another amateur using CCS Callsign Routing

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  • Disconnect the Repeater or Hotspot from the Reflector.  DTMF # will do this for you .
  • Assuming you are calling, G4WXN, whose CCS number is 3737.
  • Press the PTT and enter 3737 on the DTMF keypad or use your radio DTMF memory for stored codes.
  • The Repeater or Hotspot will connect to the Repeater or Hotspot where G4WXN last heard. If G4WXN has moved out of range of the last repeater used and has not keyed up on another Repeater he will not hear your call. It is good practice to key up at least once when changing repeaters to register your DTMF call sign on the network.
  • You will hear “Linked to G4WXN”.
  • Call G4WXN as you would on a local repeater.
  • When finished disconnect using DTMF A

The  above applies to repeaters running the ircDDB gateway or ircDDB add-on software developed by G4KLX and derivative works. Please consult the repeater trustee for information about the system running on your local repeater's gateway.

The above is derivative explanation of call sign routing based on information published by G4WXN, Derek W Haden.

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