NI4CE System

Also known as “Big Stick”, NI4CE is West Central Florida’s regional VHF/UHF Amateur Radio communications connection.  NI4CE covers all or parts of twelve different counties and provides seamless coverage along the areas I-75 and I-4 corridors.  All sites are linked.

For Polk ARES Skywarn activities, the NI4CE system is used predominately as our backup should one or more of the WC4PEM repeaters become inoperative. When Polk ARES shifts into an Emergency net, ie: we have operators at the EOC and/or in shelters, Skywarn activities would be shifted to the NI4CE.

Along with the WC4PEM system repeaters, operators within Polk County – ARES and non-ARES – should also monitor the NI4CE system repeaters.

Repeater Frequencies: (all use a tone of 100.0)

  • Bartow 442.825 +
  • Riverview 442.550 +
  • Verna 145.430 – & 442.950 +
  • Lake Placid 443.950 +
  • Holiday 443.450 +


Along with the extensive analog coverage by the NI4CE analog repeater system, an addition to the emcomm toolbox has been added now with the NI4CE NXDN network of repeaters. Many West Central Florida EOCs, as well as the National Weather Service office in Ruskin, are equipped with NXDN.

The NI4CE Digital network is compatible with ICOM IDAS™ and Kenwood NEXedge™ portable and mobile radios. These radios operate with one-fourth the bandwidth of a conventional, analog Amateur Radio transceiver but with clarity that analog transceivers cannot match.

The NXDN NI4CE repeater system was key to assisting radio amateurs provide emergency communications during hurricane Ian. In fact, check out pages 67 & 68 of the February 2023 QST magazine, and you’ll find an article titled “Notes from a Catastrophe: Hurricane Ian.” During this emergency, “NXDN radios provided clear, dependable communications.”

Below is a coverage map and frequencies of the NI4CE NXDN repeater system. Note: Two additional NXDN repeaters have been added to the NI4CE repeater system in Laurel, and in Sumter County at the Villages.