ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

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W1KNE
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ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by W1KNE »

So I have a question. We have several sites listed in our Wiki as being in locations where no actual FCC licenses exist, and one which conflicts.
How confident are we these sites actually exist where they are located vs, going based on older preliminary data from early monitoring?

If someone here has 100% confirmed their location, please indicate on this thread where in the town they are located?

The sites in question are:
Site 26 - Westford
Site 30 - Exeter, RI
Site 31 - Salem, MA
Site 32 - RR has this as Sudbury, We have it as "Pine Hill" in Waltham. There is no Pine Hill in Waltham. Multiple searches for a hill with that name came up blank. Does this mean to say Prospect Hill?
Site 33 - Fitchburg
Site 35 - Narragansett, RI

I know there are issues with how Industrial has these sites licensed, but none of the frequencies "confirmed" at the six above sites are licensed to anywhere near them, nor are there any ICE licenses within 5 kM radius of the general areas.

If the site on the DMR wiki page for Industrial is *not exactly known*, this needs to be clarified on it.
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by garys »

In previous conversations on the topic, the subject of "market licenses" came up. If you do a deep drill down on the ICE 900 licenses you'll find some that don't listen specific sites for licenses. As you mention Industrial is not all that specific with frequencies used sometimes.

The Salem site was confirmed by Eric as being on Gallows Hill in Salem. I had it located to Middleton, but since they are not that far apart at all and Eric got signal with no antenna I'll go with his siting.

"Pine Hill" is the name I gave to the Waltham site. The actual site is 39 Sachem Street at the top of the hill. I discovered it by accident and since there is a Pine Hill Circle in the area, I went with Pine Hill. Sachem Street is actually off of Trimount Street, so it could also be Trimount Hill for all I know. The site is licensed to American Tower, but that's all I could find on it. I've posted about that and asked if anyone else could find information, but never got a reply. This is not very far from Prospect Hill and originally Eric thought the site might be there. I was sitting in the Prospect Hill Park lot when I saw the tip of the Sachem Street tower poking above the trees. It took me about an hour to find the road that leads up to it, but it's there. It's a residential neighborhood, which I found strange. It looks like someone bought a lot of land and stuck a tower and block house on it.

Here is the Google Maps ground view of the site. http://tinyurl.com/ycmuxh2d. I sat in about that spot with my SDR set up sans antenna and had to turn the gain down to zero in order for the two dongles not to be overloaded.

RR has it as Sudbury because early on we thought it might be there and as they do so often, someone lifted information from our site and used it without attribution. Which is why I don't submit anything to them. Scan NE has far more accurate data on ICE and Bearcom/Comtronics than does RR.

It took about three years to pin the Waltham site down because there is no license data on it. I drove through a lot of locations in the Metro West and Metro North area during that time trying to find it. As I think did Eric.

I've been by the Westford site and again had plenty of signal without an antenna on my SDR site.

About a year ago I was planning on doing a swing through RI in order to verify the sites down there. Eric beat me to it, as he often does. He also drove out to the Rutland site and figured out the missing frequency there. It was only "missing" because it had a bad PA and was transmitting at very reduced power.

Eric is the guru on digital communications in my view. I've learned a lot from him about how it works and hot to receive it using SDRs and software. He and a lot of other members here have been tracking down DMR and NXDN systems for several years now. I trust his information completely.

As I said, our information on these systems is much more accurate and up to date than any other site. That's because people have worked hard on making it there. I know that other members have done the same as Eric. Drive around with radios and pin down sites.

Do with it as you like.
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by W1KNE »

Thank You Gary, I have commented below...
garys wrote:
16 May 2020 13:59
"Pine Hill" is the name I gave to the Waltham site. The actual site is 39 Sachem Street at the top of the hill. I discovered it by accident and since there is a Pine Hill Circle in the area, I went with Pine Hill. Sachem Street is actually off of Trimount Street, so it could also be Trimount Hill for all I know. The site is licensed to American Tower, but that's all I could find on it. I've posted about that and asked if anyone else could find information, but never got a reply. This is not very far from Prospect Hill and originally Eric thought the site might be there. I was sitting in the Prospect Hill Park lot when I saw the tip of the Sachem Street tower poking above the trees. It took me about an hour to find the road that leads up to it, but it's there. It's a residential neighborhood, which I found strange. It looks like someone bought a lot of land and stuck a tower and block house on it.
Pine Hill is in Plymouth. I looked it up using acme mapper's US topo map and there is no name. So the site name can be just "Waltham" for now, or Sachem St. The tower it's on is owned by Pinnacle Towers. I'd rather not used "made up" or "guessed" names at locations.

RR has it as Sudbury because early on we thought it might be there and as they do so often, someone lifted information from our site and used it without attribution. Which is why I don't submit anything to them. Scan NE has far more accurate data on ICE and Bearcom/Comtronics than does RR.
I've been slowly cleaning up the RRDB on the ICE system but still needs work.
I've been by the Westford site and again had plenty of signal without an antenna on my SDR site.
Where in Westford?
About a year ago I was planning on doing a swing through RI in order to verify the sites down there. Eric beat me to it, as he often does. He also drove out to the Rutland site and figured out the missing frequency there. It was only "missing" because it had a bad PA and was transmitting at very reduced power.

Eric is the guru on digital communications in my view. I've learned a lot from him about how it works and hot to receive it using SDRs and software. He and a lot of other members here have been tracking down DMR and NXDN systems for several years now. I trust his information completely.
OK , I know Eric frequents here, so hopefully he'll chime in.
As I said, our information on these systems is much more accurate and up to date than any other site. That's because people have worked hard on making it there. I know that other members have done the same as Eric. Drive around with radios and pin down sites.
Again, thank you for the information. This thread isn't about the accuracy of them vs us, it's just about getting clarifications on the sites.

Much appreciated.
Mike Fitzpatrick
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by disp617 »

I believe Westford is at the ski area.
W1KNE wrote:
16 May 2020 15:18
Thank You Gary, I have commented below...



Pine Hill is in Plymouth. I looked it up using acme mapper's US topo map and there is no name. So the site name can be just "Waltham" for now, or Sachem St. The tower it's on is owned by Pinnacle Towers. I'd rather not used "made up" or "guessed" names at locations.




I've been slowly cleaning up the RRDB on the ICE system but still needs work.



Where in Westford?



OK , I know Eric frequents here, so hopefully he'll chime in.



Again, thank you for the information. This thread isn't about the accuracy of them vs us, it's just about getting clarifications on the sites.

Much appreciated.

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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by garys »

It's near the Tubing Park. The FCC data says "Off Powers Road," which it is.

I found that by accident while researching the frequencies for Waltham. 938.4250 at two sites. One is Westford, the other is in Middleton. More on that in a second. Anyway, I was out in the Westford area during the time period I was looking for the mystery site that ended up being in Waltham. That turned out to be a dead end for that, but it did tell me that there was a site there.

Both Westford and Middleton have the same frequencies listed, but I don't think any of them are actually used at either site. I'll have to do a comparison when I have a chance.

Which brings us back to Middleton. Which is how Site 31 was previously listed. Eric (who I really hesitate to disagree with) says that it's in Salem. It does show WQAB713 in Middleton on Richardson's Farm (off of Mt Vernon St.). You can see the tower from Route 62. Which is not to say that it has the 900 site there, but when I drove by it was very strong, again without an antenna. I changed the site and confirmation data based on a post by Eric. It's probably in this thread somewhere. Maybe if I ever get the time, I'll hit both sites and do a comparison. Or maybe Eric will if he sees this and is interested.

There are probably 100 "Pine HIlls" in New England. Just as there seem to be a lot of "Bald Hills" or "Baldpate Hills." ;) People aren't all that inventive with place names. I don't know how much it matters what we name it as long as we have the locale correct. In that vein, the Sudbury site is technically in Framingham. I think it almost straddles the line.

Yes, Pinnacle Towers. While I was trying to find out more information I found a site that lists all towers in a particular city or town. My search showed some properties owned by American Towers, but I think they were all on Bear Hill. The name stuck in my mind. I know that there is some site registration on the FCC site, but I never had luck searching it. I might need a tutorial.

Anyway, the best technique I've found for locating tower sites is a combination of looking at the ICE website where they show tower sites, the FCC database, and driving as close as I can and using my SDR set up with no antenna on it.

I've been able to locate both ICE and BearCom/Comtronics sites that way. Except Site 12. I ran into a Comtronics tech at a client site and just asked him. He told me and I drove up there a few days later. Nice site (Shaker HIll). But I digress.

From looking at the licensing data for both systems I wonder if they license frequencies for various sites in anticipation of potential future use? As a site gets busier they can just install and activate new repeaters as needed. Just a thought.
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by wb1hbu »

Hello,

Westford is in the area of the Nashoba Valley Ski Area. Since ICE has WQAB713 there, I assume the Westford site is co-located at the top of the hill.
https://www.google.com/maps/place/42%C2 ... 71.4489668

There is even a picture of the site and a cell site.
https://goo.gl/maps/tm3eWMMBGAc2hYjQ6

73 Eric

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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by garys »

There's a license for Westford for the 900 Mhz site. It's just that the licensed frequencies aren't actually in use there.
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by ecps92 »

30 and 35 are correct.
35 is the same site as 102.7 FM
both rental sites, unlike most ICE sites. Not sure how/why they have not been licensed.

31 I think Eric tracked down

Much of the early posts for some of the No FCC license sites were speculations based on signal strength, which Eric has confirmed vary wildly in certain areas
and some of the early assumptions put 32 in Sudbury w
W1KNE wrote:
16 May 2020 11:59
So I have a question. We have several sites listed in our Wiki as being in locations where no actual FCC licenses exist, and one which conflicts.
How confident are we these sites actually exist where they are located vs, going based on older preliminary data from early monitoring?

If someone here has 100% confirmed their location, please indicate on this thread where in the town they are located?

The sites in question are:
Site 26 - Westford
Site 30 - Exeter, RI
Site 31 - Salem, MA
Site 32 - RR has this as Sudbury, We have it as "Pine Hill" in Waltham. There is no Pine Hill in Waltham. Multiple searches for a hill with that name came up blank. Does this mean to say Prospect Hill?
Site 33 - Fitchburg
Site 35 - Narragansett, RI

I know there are issues with how Industrial has these sites licensed, but none of the frequencies "confirmed" at the six above sites are licensed to anywhere near them, nor are there any ICE licenses within 5 kM radius of the general areas.

If the site on the DMR wiki page for Industrial is *not exactly known*, this needs to be clarified on it.
Bill Dunn N1KUG
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"The tougher it is to find a frequency, the more it makes me want to work to find it. - I've learned to use the SEARCH Button"

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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by W1KNE »

ecps92 wrote:
17 May 2020 12:35
30 and 35 are correct.
So where is site 30 in Exeter?
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by ecps92 »

Best research from the FCC = Coordinates: 41° 33' 52.4" N, 71° 37' 35.2" W as well as some local signal stalking [long ago]
W1KNE wrote:
17 May 2020 15:53
So where is site 30 in Exeter?
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by PFD1993 »

The coordinates for Exeter look to be for the tower on the Wyoming Towing property at 565 Nooseneck HIll Rd. I never really paid too much attention to that tower before. I guess I will have to take a closer look next time I'm in the area. ;)
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by garys »

That's a possibility, but the actual location (based on what Bill provided) is about 1/4 mile off of Gardner Road. There's no ASR data for that one. The one near the tow company shows a total height of 684 feet, which would give good coverage.

ETA: Adding "FAA Obstacles" to the search adds a lot of towers, but still not that one in the woods.
PFD1993 wrote:
18 May 2020 11:32
The coordinates for Exeter look to be for the tower on the Wyoming Towing property at 565 Nooseneck HIll Rd. I never really paid too much attention to that tower before. I guess I will have to take a closer look next time I'm in the area. ;)
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by PFD1993 »

Ahh, the Gardner Rd site is on the access road to the Cranston Portuguese Rod & Gun Club in the 400 block of Gardner Rd. I will take a ride by there and see what I get for "hits". Thanks for the info! :cool:
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by garys »

Of course this is all more or less guess work. It's good to have someone who knows the area take a look.
PFD1993 wrote:
18 May 2020 12:18
Ahh, the Gardner Rd site is on the access road to the Cranston Portuguese Rod & Gun Club in the 400 block of Gardner Rd. I will take a ride by there and see what I get for "hits". Thanks for the info! :cool:
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by IggyWFD »

Looking on google maps, when you zoom in you can see a red/white thin structure standing in the middle of the woods near a building. It is located between Gardiner Rd & Bell School House Rd. It appears to be set way back off the road with very limited access.. Best of luck on your hunt
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by ecps92 »

Correct - hard to see, but between the FCC data search for licenses and No Tower listings as well as some DF [Heard with No antenna] work - that is the location :)
PFD1993 wrote:
18 May 2020 11:32
The coordinates for Exeter look to be for the tower on the Wyoming Towing property at 565 Nooseneck HIll Rd. I never really paid too much attention to that tower before. I guess I will have to take a closer look next time I'm in the area. ;)
Bill Dunn N1KUG
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"The tougher it is to find a frequency, the more it makes me want to work to find it. - I've learned to use the SEARCH Button"

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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by W1KNE »

ecps92 wrote:
19 May 2020 10:04
No Tower listings as well as some
Towers under 200 feet aren't normally required to be registered, unless they meet specific requirements from the FAA otherwise.

That tower in RI is on the property of a Ham, and used by several leasing commercial tenants.
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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by ecps92 »

Exactly - not all towers being used commercially will appear in the FCC for those exact reasons. :beer:

I prefer to use the FCC Lat/Lon search by Freq within a 0.5 mi radius of my searching locations, using 0.1000 MHz thru 999.9999 MHz
which tends to find plenty of the sites or even provide targets to search when the 900 sites do not appear in the FCC :)

This one took sometime, but was finally found :)
W1KNE wrote:
19 May 2020 12:50
Towers under 200 feet aren't normally required to be registered, unless they meet specific requirements from the FAA otherwise.

That tower in RI is on the property of a Ham, and used by several leasing commercial tenants.
Bill Dunn N1KUG
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"The tougher it is to find a frequency, the more it makes me want to work to find it. - I've learned to use the SEARCH Button"

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Re: ICE DMR Trunk Unlicensed Sites - Clarification

Post by garys »

The frequencies used by the Exeter site are licensed to ICE, but at the Hopkington and Johnston sites only. Again, just some of the 900Mhz weirdness that we see.
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