There is a group that meets each week for a net held on an Allstar node that I would like to join in on. While I may be able to use a club repeater, which I recently joined our local club and am waiting to hear back on their rules I also started looking into what it would take to have my own node. It seems a bit more involved than the DMR/YSF/D-Star hotspot type set-ups. A lot of the information I have found is a few years old which by tech standards is dated. Perhaps that is because the DMR stuff took over. I am not ready to bite the bullet and buy a DMR radio, I already have analog radios and can acquire a Baofeng much cheaper than a DMR radio. I may eventually invest in a hotspot but if I do I will probably go the YSF route and get an FT-70R. Back to the Allstar nodes. It looks like most of my options are going to be in the realm of a little homebrew. My soldering skills aren't the best but this looks fairly straight forward (http://www.bay-net.org/uploads/1/2/2/7/122774721/w6mnl-allstar-baycon2018.pdf). I am curious if anyone has built a node like the one mentioned in this presentation and if you can share any thoughts on it. I am not looking to run a full radio, even low power at 5 watts is overkill for what I want,I just want to be able to be able to use the node around my apartment, out on the balcony, maybe just around when walking outside. I am also not looking to spend a ton of money on this, in fact if I did the UV-82 route I wouldn't bother with the fancy box for everything. I am still researching stuff, not sure if WB3DZZ is still in business his name came up as someone making cables cheaper than the URI ones. If I got over a fear of complete and utter failure and had spare parts I could probably try my hand at the cable, again my soldering does need work. Looking for thoughts and feedback from the pros.