APRS Workshop- April 21, 2018

The WVRA is sponsoring an APRS Workshop on Saturday, April 21st. The event will be held at the State Patrol Headquarters in Wausau.

APRS is a packet mode used to automatically transmit data from station to station, such as GPS coordinates, weather/station info, station to station messages, etc. APRS is integrated into most higher end VHF radios, however, even a basic used radio is capable of handling APRS traffic.

The purpose of this workshop will be to learn how to setup a TNC and to build a station. While we will touch on software, we do not have the resources to work on installation/debugging APRS applications.

After a review of how APRS works, we will have a chance to assemble a station. You are welcome to bring a VHF radio and TNC. We’ll help make sure it’s tuned and in good working order. We will also be spending time talking about the Argent OpenTracker TNC. This is an inexpensive TNC/GPS solution that will work with most radios. If you would like to purchase an OpenTracker prior to the workshop, the WVRA will be submitting a group order. A discount is available if we have enough pre-orders. Pre-orders are due by the April 3rd meeting (cash or check). The OpenTracker USB package includes: TNC, GPS receiver, and power cord (custom cords for common radios are available – please indicate radio make/model on registration) and the cost is $95.00 (prior to bulk discount if we meet that goal)

You do not have to purchase the OpenTracker to attend the workshop. We will cater to all types of TNCs as time allows.

To register, please fill out the registration form below:


  • 9am – Intro to APRS
    • AX.25 – What is it
      • WVRA APRS/Packet Radio Systems
      • Uses for APRS
    • Connecting to a Serial Terminal
    • Commands
    • Paths, Symbols, and (un)proto-cols
    • SSID (No – it’s not your Social Security Number)
    • GPS Info
    • Types of TNCs
  • 10am – Intro to the Argent Systems Open Tracker
  • 10:30am – Break
  • 10:45 – APRS Assembly and Tuning
  • 1pm (or earlier) – end


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