As a christmas present I got a hamradio ... / 2012-12-27

2012-12-27 As a christmas present I got a hamradio ... 6 years ago
As a christmas present I got a hamradio transceiver, a Wouxun KG-UVD1P. I should not use it until I get the right amateur radio license! All the more reason to study for it and pass the exam.

I plan to use it to work FM repeaters when I get my license. I hope to do long rides on the recumbent again and using this radio at the same time. It is a small radio, it fits in my hand. The speaker microphone should make use on the recumbent easy.

Otherwise I'm getting myself familiarized with it and trying to understand it all. I bought it with a speaker microphone and a programming cable and software. The software with the programming cable came on a recordable small-format CD-ROM and only mentioned Midland product numbers so I had to look up that the Wouxon KG-UVD1P is also known as the Midland CT790. This is Windows software and since the cable has a PL2303 serial/usb convertor you also need a driver for that. Programming repeater names and frequencies into the radio using the software is easy.

Having to use Windows isn't my idea of very usable hardware, so I searched whether someone had already done something and I found Open Wouxon (OWX) which allows reading the radio and writing it from Linux and other Unix versions. Reading over the serial/usb cable worked the first time:
$ owx-check -p /dev/ttyUSB0 
Found radio: KG669V
$ owx-get -p /dev/ttyUSB0 -o file.bin
Found radio: KG669V
Reading address 0x1FC0 (99% done)
$ cp file.bin backup.bin
$ owx-export -i file.bin -o wouxon.csv
$ vim wouxon.csv
and I was able to make some edits, writing data back gave me timeouts on the first few tries where the owx-check utility showed perfect communication with the radio.
$ owx-put -p /dev/ttyUSB0 -i file.bin -r backup.bin 
owx: Radio not responding
$ owx-check -p /dev/ttyUSB0 
Found radio: KG669V
$ owx-put -p /dev/ttyUSB0 -i file.bin -r backup.bin 
owx: Radio not responding
$ owx-check -p /dev/ttyUSB0 
Found radio: KG669V
$ owx-put -p /dev/ttyUSB0 -i file.bin -r backup.bin 
Found radio: KG669V
Skipping address 0x1FF0 (99% done) 
Strange, but in the end it all works.

The manual of the Wouxon KG-UVD1P gives me the idea that this radio is one where a lot is done in software. It can be programmed to go outside hamradio bands for other uses. The manual is somewhat terse and the English used isn't too great, but it works for me.

I found this review of the Wouxon KG-UVD1P by N9EWO which has more on longer use and compares it with other amateur radio sets. I'll post updates on this after I get to actually use it.
Reviews of the Wouxon KG-UVD1P at eham.net

Wouxon KG-UVD1P manufacturer webpage

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