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For remote site is there any need to have a power disconnect?

Dale97
Dale97 Member
I am working with a Flex 6600 that will be moving to a mountain top repeater site when the weather improves. This will be a club station, completely remote controlled. The radio will be on both Internet and a microwave network. A Raspberry Pi will be on the same network as the Flex. When users make a VPN connection to the Flex radio it will activate a relay connected to the Flex power-on connector.

At the moment the Flex is always connected to DC power and the Raspberry Pi watches for a VPN connection and will turn on and off the Flex radio when a VPN connection is active.

I am considering adding a latching relay such that the Flex normally has DC power but in the event that "something goes wrong" I can have the Raspberry Pi disconnect power to the Flex and then restore power. I want to know if there is any need for this ability. I would use a latching relay so I was not wasting current through a relay coil all the time.

I did have one experience in which the Flex radio did not boot up. I investigated and found that the red light on the power switch was giving 3 blinks then a pause which I believe indicates boot failure. I have the Flex and Raspberry Pi on a VLAN and think the error may have been caused by some firewall changes that messed up my network. I resolved this by disconnecting DC power to the Flex momentarily.

I do not know if toggling the remote power connection on the back of the Flex will do everything that actually power cycling the radio will accomplish. Does anyone know if a remote site should have the ability to power cycle the Flex radio other than using the remote on connection?

I am really enjoying this radio. I am a long-time ham but this is my first experience with a waterfall display and also my first experience being able to operate from the comfort of my office while the radio is out in a somewhat cold shack. This is a great new experience.

Thanks, Dale, K7FW

Answers

  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin

    Hi Dale

    I have been running remotely since 2005. For my FLEX-6600, I use the remote RCA connector for powering it off.

    When I really want to shut down things, I use another relay to turn off the Power Supply (70Amp Astron).

    I use a combination of KMTronic web switches to manage this which work very well if you want to keep it simple.

    There are many IoT remote switches that will work as well.

    I think you will find that there are many answers to you question.

    73

  • Dale97
    Dale97 Member
    I spoke with someone at Flex and the answer is that for a remote site some way to power cycle the radio beyond just the auxiliary power jack is useful. There is always a chance that something could get messed up - this is a computer after all - and a power cycle would be desired. So for our remote site the radio will normally use the aux jack to switch power on and off but we will also have a large normally closed relay that we can open to remove power from the radio should we ever find that necessary to force a full reset.

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