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Re: [coldwarcomms] WeCo 60B Selector

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  • Radioman390@cs.com
    OK. the later GE mobile phones were duplex when they became capable of five channels. The most common was the DTO-3 which was duplex VHF. It had three or four
    Message 1 of 4 , Nov 1, 2009
      OK. the later GE mobile phones were duplex when they became capable of five channels. The most common was the DTO-3 which was duplex VHF. It had three or four subassemblies, ET-21 receiver, ET-32 transmitter, a power supply, and a multi-freq board that added three channels. The decoder was a smaller version of the Model 60, made by secode but similar in that it had a loud stepper wheel. It was mounted on the outside of the case, and came in several "flavors" like 2805 Hz decoding and a early mechanical two-way rotary dialing scheme that preceded IMTS.

      I learned to count the pulses by hearing them mechanically transmitted and "knew" when I was getting a call before the "call" light came on and it started ringing.

      But there was also a simplex version known as the STO-3, or the very rare STO-2 which covered the "Z" channels (35 MHz base and 43 MHz mobile trasnsmit). New York had two channels ZL & ZR. ZL was also in Washington, New Brunswick, Philly, maybe Wilmington, and Baltmore. But because of low-band skip, the next ZL and ZR channels were located way out West.

      Midwest cities had ZA (Buffalo, Cleveland, etc). Mountain state had ZH as I recall.

      The "Z" channel service was promoted as "highway service" because it used directional antennas to provide solid coverage along Route 1.

      I had an STO2 when I lived on Staten Island, NYC, which had ZA channel in it. The channel came alive one day and I spoke with the mobile operator in Eau Claire Wisconsin. I had made it into full duplex phone by bridging a 0.01 capacitor between the receiver and transmitter antennas. The 8 Mhz "split" made it possible.

      The DTO/STO series had an external HV power supply transformer which was mounted on the outside of the case. It used a high pitched oscillator that leaked into the audio. The DTO3 had a little duplexer made by Secode which was a 2" cube with a SO-239 connector mounted on it. The STO had a flat panel over the hole with the SO-239 in the middle.

      The TO series mated to a very handsome control head with five channel pushbuttons, and the handset cradled across the top, sideways. They did use the squelch circuit, but not to block audio, but to trigger the "busy light".

      But my original mobile phone was a converted earlier Progline 2-way radio and had the internal vibrator PS. I carried a spare vibrator in case it ever seized up and tapping the actual vibrator didn't fix it. I had a key to open the case to slide it out to reach the vibrator (key number was 2055 or maybe 2105, and opened all GE radio cases). The Western Elec 60 sat next to the 2 way radio on on a wooden shelf I built over the gas tank. In fact I think I drilled into to mount the shelf.
      I'm still here.

      -----Original Message-----
      From: David <wb8foz@...>
      To: coldwarcomms@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Sun, Nov 1, 2009 6:27 pm
      Subject: [coldwarcomms] WeCo 60B Selector

      > It consisted of a two-channel GE Progress Line two-way radio (two

      > channels), with the high voltage coming from a vibrator power supply.

      > The Western Electric 60 decoder had been found by my boss at a metal

      > scrap yard right near the Pentagon (maybe where Crystal City is now).

      Wow, nostalgia alert...

      My first 2mtr rig was an OBT surplus Progress Line. I'll disagree though --

      AFAIK, all Progress Lines were transistorized inverters, no vibrators.

      Pre-progs [unofficial name] were buzzboxes..

      The mobile phone models were full duplex, with lower power output

      [2E26->6146] but a bigger power supply with external heat sink. They had no

      squelch or audio amp. The selector was in an external box by the handle.

      I built an audio amp for mine in the selector box, added an antenna relay,

      etc. It was in my 67 Beetle trunk...

      In Cleveland, MTS accounts could not be had by hook or crook. Later, when I

      worked in the 2-way business, we had a customer with 3 brothers, farther,

      and BiL. They had one license so [ahem...] we put them all on it; each

      "homed" to a different channel and with a business card saying "YJ-1234" or

      JK-1234 etc. With the manual ticketing [/min] no one at Ma ever noticed.

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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