By Rick Bunn – N4ASX
Club Repeaters: 147.315 (PL 107.2), 444.6 (PL107.2), 224.82 (PL107.2), 53.13 (PL107.2), 927.6 (-25Mhz, PL107.2), and 1282.600 (PL 107.2), DSTAR 145.38Mhz, 442.060, and 1284.600
NEXT CLUB MEETING
Our next meeting is FRIDAY, June 11th at Alexandria City’s new Emergency Operations Center at 3600 Wheeler Ave. We will meet in the Community Room on the first floor. Parking is the public lot right in front of the building. DO NOT PARK ON THE STREET!!! At 7:00 there should be plenty of spaces.
Our program will be Field Day! This is the BIGGEST club event of the year and it would be GREAT if we could get as many of the club members to come out for just a few hours as we could. See the web site for more details, but we will have at least 5 HF stations on the air and if we had 45 members come out we could stay on the air for the total 24 hours with each member only operating about 1.5 to 2 hours. Don’t worry about not having gear to contribute we have all kinds of gear available. The club owns four great HF transceivers. We have four rotatable dipoles available and several members have the Honda 2K generators. I know we can count on three and maybe we have two or three others. What we need is OPERATORS. Don’t worry about your class of license. We have extra class operators act as control operators so you can use all the bands all the way!
This year’s food chairperson is Stephanie Adamy. She does a gourmet job. Please bring something to share for dinner. The club covers the main course, but sides and deserts would be a nice contribution.
MARCH MEETING – Minutes KJ4FUU
Presiding: Marshall KI4MWP
Treasurer’s Report: Total – $8,452, Checking $313, Trailer fund $573, Education $2,427,Share $5,138
DSTAR: New UPS helped, but PC may be an issue, looking for refurbished PC, Verizon problems? For the Hamvention, 2m will be set to 38C, normal 2m will be 25C, 70cm will use reflector 1C.
Training: 7 Technicians, 1 General student left; Test is 05/22.
Web: Announcements section on home page; newsletters, attendance, check-ins, new privacy regulations required for club email.
Bull Run Run was a success.
Dayton Hamvention next week, 05/18-05/20/2012
Field Day 06/23,06/24 – Jack K5OTZ PowerPoint presentation, 1st Sunday in June, band captains will meet at Armistead Boothe Park for antenna layout planning.
23Cm radar issues?
Manassas hamfest 06/10
Holiday party at Mango Mike’s, 12/14
Civil War special event station at Ft. Ward, 09/08 – 09/09, if issues with the city can be worked out, but an alternate location may be needed.
Program: Dennis Bodson W4PWF ARRL Roanoke Division
50-50 Drawing: Vern (no call yet) (BUT, He has one now! KK4JQM – Congratulations on the call and the win…
05/17/2012 Tom KJ4FUU
05/24/2012 Larry KK4CBL
05/31/2012 Rich KA4GFY
06/07/2012 Ted W9TCE
73 Tom, KJ4FUU
Spring and early summer I think are the best times to be a licensed amateur radio operator. First, in mid-May is the Dayton Hamvention, one of the best places that a ham can have his or her equipment dreams realized (assuming you have a “flexible” credit card!). Myself and several other ARC members went to this year’s Hamvention and it was another great experience–large crowds, interesting new equipment, good flea market buys, and best of all, fantastic weather!
If you have ever considered visiting Hamvention, I suggest you definitely make it at least once–it is quite the experience that you’ll long remember.
Second, In mid-June, we have Field Day. This year’s Field Day activities are moving along nicely under Jack’s (K5OTZ) guidance. We met recently to go over the layout for the various stations at Armistead Boothe park, and hopefully the weather will be as nice the weekend of June 23 and 24 as it was then–blue skies, comfortable temperatures, and good DX’ing as far as one could envision! I’m looking forward to seeing ARC members at this year’s activities, so make sure you have June 23 and 24 marked on your calendar.
And lastly, we have the ARRL’s June VHF QSO Party held June 9 through 11. This party can be a lot of fun for those operating on 6M, 2M, 70CM, 220MHz, 900MHz, 1.2 GHz, and GHz 2.3 GHzz or higher bands. There’s nothing nicer that combining a drive in the Virginia countryside up to a high location on a nice day with a station setup (along with a picnic basket) and making some VHF contacts. A great outing can be had along with making some new contacts on some bands you may not have worked in a while. So, I hope everyone will have a great summer this year, and I hope to hear you on the bands soon!
Manassas Old Virginia Hams Hamfest – June 10th
Members of the club usually set up a tailgate spot or two so look for us on 147.315 simplex. Gates open at 7AM.
From the Schoolhouse –
Congratulations to our new and recently upgraded licensees!
Our most recent licensing class wrapped up on May 22 with new licenses for 6 class members and an upgrade for one. We also had two people join the festivities for the test, which included one new license and one upgrade. A good job by everybody. If you hear them on the air, say Hi and welcome them to the world of ham radio.
Vernon Olson KK4JQM Technician
Mathew A. Kirleis KK4JQN Technician
Dwight A. Nichols KK4JQO Technician
Paul L. Diaz KK4JQP Technician
David M. Wilburn KK4JQQ General
Edward J. Bradshaw KK4JQR General
Donghai Yu KB3YUN Technician
James G. Kincheloe KL3IA General
Matthew W. Genack KI4STB Extra
Dayton Hamvention Report
Our group or travelers was led by KA4GFY, a veteran of 20+ Dayton Hamventions. Also attending was KI4MWP, AF2D, W3RST, KG4NRD, KF7IJZ, N8IK, W9TCE and KI4BXH. It was the first ever Hamvention for KF7IJZ and KI4BXH. We also saw some Alexandria Radio Club alumni, N8OQ, K4BAV, and N9ACC.
Most everybody caravanned out on Thursday keeping in touch via our 70 cm link with an occasional call on 40 meters. N8IK was on his way back from a cross country trip on his motorcycle and met up with us at the hotel. Many of us were able to follow N8IK’s trip via APRS. His message on the return trip said “Heading for Hamvention.”
The weather this year cooperated with the Hamvention organizers. Not too hot, nor too cool, but just enough sun to get slightly red from being outside without sunscreen. No rupture problems this year either.
Kenwood introduced a new HF rig and Yaesu introduced a new digital handheld. Kenwood’s HF radio looks like it should be a good seller. Yaasu’s plan is to build an alternative system to DSTAR, with the new handheld as the start. This is certainly in keeping with the spirit of ham radio, the ability to experiment with new modes. One item that caught our interest was a 70 cm DSTAR repeater being built by a company from the US Northwest. It is supposed to have the functionality of the DSTAR repeaters in service now. The planned selling price is around $400, which should make it very attractive to anyone interested in putting up a DSTAR repeater.
This year’s big purchase goes to KF7IJZ, who bought a service monitor that operates up to 1.5 GHz. The great part about this is we have a project for it already. Our 23 cm analog repeater may need some adjustments, so now we have test equipment to do the job right. The most purchased item was the GRE PSR-800 scanner. Several vendors were selling them at Hamvention special prices, so KA4GFY, W3RST and KI4MWP all bought one. This scanner is fairly easy to set up. Just tell it where you are, and it does the rest. It also is the only scanner on the market right now that is able to track the new Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) format that is starting to show up on some trunking repeater systems in our area. Don’t panic, your current digital scanner is not outdated.
The flea market was well stocked with used commercial equipment. With the pending change to narrowband by Part 90 users, a lot of equipment is showing up hamfests. If you are into converting commercial equipment to ham use, keep an eye open. The mandatory cut over date is approaching and some of the current equipment will become unusable for commercial use, but not for our use on the ham bands.
One of the most notable items for sale was the Drake UV-3 transceiver. There were at least 3 for sale. These radios were made in the late 70s and early 80s. The unique thing about these radios is they were some of the first multiple band VHF/UHF mobile radios, with 2 meters, 1.25 meters and 70 cm. They could also be set up to operate with a separate control head and RF deck, features we see as standard now. In their day, this was pretty forward thinking.
One notable item missing this year was the Collins Collectors Association van. It had been retired since last year’s Hamvention. In case you’re wondering what’s so special about it, it was a 1960s Ford Econoline van that was outfitted with a complete Collins station built inside. Keep in mind that what was considered a mobile radio in the 1960s is not the same concept we use today. So, the equipment is quite a bit larger than what we are used to seeing in a mobile setup.
One very good sign on the health of ham radio was the continuous long line outside the testing room. Looking at the results posted outside in the hallway showed quite a few new licenses issued and quite a few more upgraded. Not only that, the DARA VE team was able to post directly to their VEC, which went almost instantaneously to the FCC’s computer. So, that meant if you took a test on Friday, you had a new license Saturday morning. Talk about service!
So, if you have attended the Dayton Hamvention, you should consider next year. It’s always the 3rd weekend in May. You never know what you will find. If you can’t find it at the Hamvention, you don’t need it.
June – FIELD DAY Planning – Jack K5OTZ
July – MARS – Gary Sessums – KC5QCN
August – D-Star 201 – KI4MWP (beyond the local repeater) – Marshall DeBerry KI4MWP
Oct – AMRAD (tentative)
Nov – Elections
Dec – Party
Up Coming Events
ARRL Field Day is not a fully adjudicated contest, which explains much of its popularity. It is a time where many aspects of Amateur Radio come together to highlight our many roles. While some will treat it as a contest, most groups use the opportunity to practice their emergency response capabilities. It is an excellent opportunity to demonstrate Amateur Radio to local elected community leaders, key individuals with the organizations that Amateur Radio might serve in an emergency, as well as the general public. For many clubs, ARRL Field Day is one of the highlights of our annual calendar.
Not only is this a great deal of fun, it’s a great time for those who don’t have HF equipment or are new to the hobby to get some time when the bands will be REALLY busy. Do not worry about not having experience this is THE event to learn.
We are not a contest club, so the goal is to have fun for 24 hours.
More information and planning at the next meeting. BE THERE.
73 Jack, K5OTZ
CLUB Christmas Dinner
Not too early to mark your calendar for this annual event! This year we will have the holiday party on our regular meeting night December 14th (second Friday). We have two choices of locations, primarily due to no room charge which is always an issue in this area, and both restaurants are available on 12/14. First choice is Mango Mike’s http://www.mangomikes.com/mangos-alexandria.html on Duke Street which we’ve been to for a couple of years. Price range is $25-30.
Monday Night Half Price Burgers – There is a group that gets together at Shooter McGee’s (Duke and Paxton Streets) on Monday evenings at 6:15 30 PM. A good burger and soft drink runs about $9.50.