The West Central Florida Group, Inc.

A non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization to promote Amateur Radio and Emergency Communications on Florida's West Coast

The West Central Florida Group, Inc. is a non-profit Amateur Radio organization.   We were founded in 2001 to manage and operate West Central Florida's only regional linked amateur radio repeater system.  The NI4CE System covers all or parts of fourteen counties and provides extensive mobile coverage along the I-75 and the I-4 corridors.  The system's continuing growth and annual operating expenses are supported via tax deductable donations. Please visit our Contribute Funds page for information on how you can help.

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Paul Knupke Jr
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WCFG

NI4CE & 70 CENTIMETERS

One of the most frequent questions we are asked is why are there so many 70 cm (UHF) repeaters in the NI4CE system? The simple answer is that coordinated VHF frequency pairs are hard to come by. The Florida Repeater Council grants all frequency coordinations on a first come - first served basis. We are fortunate to have 145.430 MHz at our Verna site in Central Manatee County and 145.290 MHz at High Point in central Pinellas County.

70 cm (UHF) frequency pairs, on the other hand, are more readily available. As some of the myths about 70 cm repeaters have been debunked and more dual band VHF-UHF radios have become available, Hams have embraced 70 cm operation with great results.  

The NI4CE system currently six 70 centimeter UHF repeaters:

442.95 MHz co-located with 145.43 in Verna (Central Manatee County)
443.450 MHz at Holiday (Pasco County)
442.825 MHz at Bartow in Central Polk County
442.550 MHz and 444.425 MHz (NXDN digital) at Riverview in Hillsborough County
443.950 MHz at Lake Placid in Southern Highlands County  

Our development of these communications resources now provides the nearly ten thousand licensed Amateur Radio operators in our area with a seamless, linked communications system that blankets Florida's West Coast from Citrus County (North) into Lee County (South) and extends inland as far East as Orlando. The NI4CE system provides excellent mobile coverage along the I-75 corridor from Brooksville South through Charlotte County and along the I-4 corridor from Tampa to Orlando. You will also find seamless mobile coverage along the US17 corridor in Polk, Hardee, DeSoto and Charlotte Counties and along the US27 corridor in Glades, Highlands and Polk Counties.

The NI4CE's use of 70 centimeter UHF repeaters provides area Hams with several unique communications opportunities. The shorter wavelength of the 70 centimeter UHF band allows more fluent access from inside steel and concrete structures, including office buildings, warehouses and houses. This shorter wavelength allows users to achieve higher gain with shorter antennas. This better enables the use of handheld, portable transceivers when weather conditions make the use of external antennas dangerous.
Hams living in Deed Restricted communities will also find it easier to operate on NI4CE 70 centimeter repeaters, enabling them to remain active in the Amateur Radio Service. 70 centimeter antennas can be easily mistaken for over-the-air television antennas. 70 centimeter antennas can also more easily be located in attics, if external mounting is not an option.

All NI4CE repeaters, both VHF and UHF, utilize a CTCSS tone of 100Hz. Our use of CTCSS (both transmit and receive) enables operators to configure their transceivers to eliminate squelch crashes and errant intermod signals that are prevalent in high RF locales.

The NI4CE system is on the air for all licensed Radio Amateurs to use. Plug it into your VHF/UHF radios and use it often. We also encourage you to participate in the many informational and emergency Nets conducted on the NI4CE system.

Home
Page

Paul Knupke Jr
Memorial Fund

NI4CE Map &
Frequencies

NXDN Digital
Repeaters

Photo
Album

SKYWARN
Regional Nets

Daily Net
Schedule

Contribute
Funds

About
WCFG


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