By Stana Horzepa, WA1LOU
After returning home from Hamvention 30 years ago, I wrote the following for ARRL’s packet radio newsletter Gateway:
TAPR UNVEILS packetRADIO AT DAYTON
The Tucson Amateur Packet Radio (TAPR) booth at the Dayton Hamvention was buzzing with the unveiling of a number of new packet-radio products including prototypes of the TAPR “packetRADIO,” a low-cost (approximately $250) two-stage VHF transceiver designed exclusively for packet-radio applications. TAPR’s packetRADIO features 9600 baud FSK and 1200 baud AFSK 2-meter operation with 25 watts output, five crystal-controlled channels and a transmit-receive turnaround time of less than one millisecond (ms).
The working prototypes displayed at the Hamvention were the result of a six-week crash project by TAPR. Beta-testing will begin soon with the radios expected to be available to the general public in approximately six months.
TAPR’s packetRADIO generated a lot of excitement at Hamvention in 1989, but the project was never completed and was eventually cancelled to the disappointment of many packeteers including myself.
Fast-forward 30 years…
While cleaning out the TAPR warehouse, John Koster, W9DDD, found the packetRADIO prototype and brought it to the TAPR board meeting for show and tell. I ended up with it and brought it home to add to my collection of vintage packet radio TNCs.