Radar data decoding

I'm pretty new at this NOAAPort thing, and I'm having a bit of difficulty 
getting started..      I found this message on the ldm-users e-mail archive:

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Does anybody know the format of this data? Is it the same format as is broadcast
by the current NIDS providers? Is there a document somewhere that describes the
data format so one could write a decoder? I did a quick search on NOAAPORT and
 NIDS, but came up empty.

-Chad

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Chad W. Johnson                           E-mail: chadj@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Programmer/Meteorologist                  Voice: (608) 265-5292
Space Science and Engineering Center      Fax: (608) 263-6738
University of Wisconsin -- Madison
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But I couldn't find a response.     I'm really looking to use the non-graphical 
data from these radar files but am getting nowhere in terms of finding a format 
to use and running with it.      We have version 5.1.2 of LDM, and the NMC3 
data feed, so I know we are getting NIDS data..    and I already have completed 
a script that strips off the header.. decompresses the data.. and then strips 
off the other header that was inside the compressed data.    So I have lots of 
files of raw radar data.. and no idea how to get it into some sort of textual 
format.   I'd like to build a decoder (if one doesn't already exist) to take 
this raw data and process it into a form I can use.   I'd appreciate it if 
anyone who has hit this problem before or who hasn't and knows where to find 
information could fill me in on what road to proceed down next.    Thanks a 
bunch in advance for your time..

Sincerely,
Chaz Braxmeier