ARRL and AM. minute #64, July 19-20, 2002

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by W0TDH, Aug 15, 2002.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
ad: L-HROutlet
ad: l-rl
ad: Subscribe
ad: Left-2
ad: L-MFJ
ad: Left-3
ad: MessiPaoloni-1
  1. mackinac

    mackinac Banned

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (W1RFI @ Aug. 16 2002,05<!--emo&amp;:0)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Questions about where to put some of the wider, but purely data digital modes, were probably the impetus behind this motion, but the scope of the motion is not limited to digital or digital voice.  [/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    Ed, thanks for such a reasonable posting on the topic.  After reading a few complaints about the motion being &quot;taken out of context&quot;, I read the minutes on the ARRL site.  It is basically as you state: the motivation may have been digital modes, but the proposal is not so limited.

    The posting by W5JBP gave the impression that he was confused on the term &quot;subband&quot;.  On most HF and VHF bands both &quot;data&quot; and &quot;phone&quot; (to use Part 97 terms) are each restricted to a subband within each band.  It is a bit disconcerting to read this from the ARRL president.

    One thing that annoys me about these discussions are the mode bigots.  One of the good things about amateur radio is the variety of modes one can try, so I rather dislike the posters the disparage AM, even though I am not using it right now.  I do hope the ARRL takes  this opportunity to expand the options open to hams and not let it be used to eliminate some modes that happen to be unpopular with a few.
     
  2. W5ATX

    W5ATX Guest

    I too was wondering why it sounded like the president of ARRL was confused about the subband subject. To ask how many of us use voice in &quot;the subband&quot; shows a lack of clarity. ALL voice is in the VOICE subband.

    Mr Haynie's comment that &quot;we&quot; are interested in digital is also cause for concern. WHO exactly is he referring to? If he means himself, and is speaking in the third person as many hams are wont to do, that's fine. He is entitled to his interests just any other ham. If his reference is to the ARRL or the directors (who essentially constitute the ARRL for decision making purposes), ham radio could have a problem.

    The ARRL should be interested in ham radio. ALL of it. If the position of the ARRL is to be interested in the welfare of only one technology to the exclusion of others, there's a serious problem. This would just be another demonstration that ARRL does NOT represent amateur radio, but rather only the special interests or certain factions.

    ARRL does not represent me. They have not in many years. Thus my decision not to be a member. If I were, I would certainly be casting my vote in the next directorship election with this subject in mind. Should I even be commenting on this, being a non-member? Perhaps not. But I have decided the good of the amateur community at large may depend on posts like mine.

    This statement by Mr Haynie sounds dangerous folks. Members of ARRL need to consider how this will affect them, the president's lack of clarity being a serious issue.

    Good luck,

    Chris
     
  3. K3XR

    K3XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    chris, w5atx and some others make a good point about &quot;subbands&quot;, while i can't find the term in part 97, safe to say it refers to the breakdown in 97.305, including phone subbands.........it's interesting to note that cw has no subband...as it may be transmitted any place on the band (97.305(a))...

    the reference to comments on motion 64 being taken out of context...so far, every quote i have seen is word for word as it appears on the arrl web site...

    one thing i may be reading wrong, see what you think, is that motion #63 talks about .....&quot;A NEW AD HOC-HOC COMMITTEE THAT WILL STUDY THE NEW HF DATA MODES IN THE AMATEUR SERVICE&quot;.....and that is followed by #64.....&quot;AT THE NEXT PRACTICAL OPPORTUNITY, THE ARRL SHALL PETITION THE FCC TO REVISE PART 97 TO REGULATE SUBBANDS BY SIGNAL BANDWITH INSTEAD OF BY MODE&quot;.....seems to me you would want to wait for the committee to report on the data modes before you petition the fcc on signal bandwith as you are likely to have a better idea of what to ask for .....
    dan,k3xr
     
  4. W1RFI

    W1RFI Ham Member QRZ Page

    &gt; ARRL does not represent me. They have not in many years. Thus my decision not to be a member. If I were, I would certainly be casting my vote in the next directorship election with this subject in mind. Should I even be commenting on this, being a non-member? Perhaps not. But I have decided the good of the amateur community at large may depend on posts like mine. &gt;

    Sorry about that; I hit the ctrl key and accidentally sent the last post before I was done.

    As a member, you WOULD get the opportunity to vote for ARRL Director and Section Manager -- an opportunity I take every chance I get. And as a non-member, you do have every right to your opinion. I can think of a few organizations I cannot support and still feel I have a right to speak out against. But please do look at the overall accomplishments of ARRL and ask yourself whether you, and Amateur Radio, are better served by your being a member or not. Yup, ARRL honks me off a bit from time to time, too, but when I look at things like I just mentioned in my last (aborted) post, I make the decision every few years to re-up, to support those things and to give myself more opportunity to influence the things I do not feel are being done the way I feel they should be.

    Tom Frenaye told me that I am one of a handful of people that regularly make their views known to him. That gives me an influence on ARRL policy way ahead of those who do not communicate, or do not join.

    73,
    Ed Hare, W1RFI
     
  5. W1RFI

    W1RFI Ham Member QRZ Page

    &gt;&gt; ARRL does not represent me. They have not in many years. Thus my decision not to be a member. If I were, I would certainly be casting my vote in the next directorship election with this subject in mind. Should I even be commenting on this, being a non-member? Perhaps not. But I have decided the good of the amateur community at large may depend on posts like mine. &gt;

    &gt; Sorry about that; I hit the ctrl key and accidentally sent the last post before I was done.

    Even worse, I managed to delete the whole thing. Let me try again. :)

    ARRL does not represent my views 100% of the time either. But in drawing from my own work, can you say that ARRL didn't represent you when it reached an MOU with the FCC to work jointly on power-line interference cases? Right now, the Lab staff are handling about 75 active cases, with more coming in every day. Some of them have over 50 staff hours invested already. Did the League represent you when the Lab staff did an interference study on 70 cm to help with the Savi Technologies RFID threat on that band? Does ARRL represent you when they participate in the IEEE C63 &quot;RFI&quot; committee to try to deal with interference problems at the consumer manufacturer level? How about when they worked with HomePlug, the Home Phone Networking Alliance to persuade them that they needed to include 30 dB more protection in the radiated emissions level in their standard than FCC rules require to help prevent widespread harmful interfernece on HF? Do the 500+ QST articles made available for download from the ARRL Technical Information Service web pages meet your expectations to help beginners get started in ham radio? How about the information pages on a wide variety of subject? What about the Big Project, an educational initiative to bring ham radio into the classrooms of America to invest in ham radio's future generation? What about the technical and operational on-line courses?

    These are just a few examples off the top of my head about how ARRL has represented me over the past year or so. Yup, there are a few areas where I have disagreed with the action they have taken. And Tom Frenaye hears from me regularly. In some cases, we agree to disagree, and in other cases, when I hear his explanation about why the Board chose to do something, I have changed my mind and think he is a good guy after all. :)

    At any rate, I just wanted to give you my personal reasons for writing that check every few years. HQ staff and the Board of Directors have to pony up their dues dollars just like everyone else. :)

    73,
    Ed Hare, W1RFI
     
  6. W0TDH

    W0TDH Ham Member QRZ Page

    Honest Oversite or a Techie Hoodoo &gt;

    If the Author's of Minute 64 would declare a more specific intent as to what they meant now , here or es at the next Board Meeting, that might fly. If however, there is no positive response from that quarter then I think we really need to let our opinions be heard. The Board Members need to hear from you. Please Do send them an e mail as to your thoughts on this issue.Anyone needing e mail addresses of folks to send your thoughts to, please give me a buzz. There in EVERY issue of QST [​IMG])

    Tom - K0PJG
    Life Member ARRL
     
  7. W1RFI

    W1RFI Ham Member QRZ Page

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (K0PJG @ Aug. 16 2002,19:11)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">If the Author's of Minute 64 would declare a more specific intent as to what they meant now , here or es at the next Board Meeting, that might fly.  If however, there is no positive response from that quarter then  I think we really need to let our opinions be heard.  The Board Members need to hear from you.  Please Do send them an e mail as to your thoughts on this issue.Anyone needing e mail addresses of folks to send your thoughts to, please give me a buzz.  There in EVERY issue of QST [​IMG])

    Tom - K0PJG
    Life Member ARRL[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    By my read, the motion represents a &quot;sense of the Board.&quot; The details of that petition are to be worked out and will be approved by the Board before they are sent to the FCC, in the normal fashion. (The Board members regularly communicate by email and the Board committees have teleconferences, etc.)

    With that in mind, I agree wholeheartedly that people should indeed make their views about this subject known to their Directors! You can easily do so by using the addresses or telephone numbers posted in QST or at:

    http://www.arrl.org/divisions

    It is my personal view that the rules should be written to maximize the flexibility of amateurs in doing the types of operating and experimenting that they would like to do. In some countries, the rules are simple: These are your power limits and band edges -- stay within them. While I don't that this would work well in a very large amateur population like we have in the US, I believe that a division of sub-band by bandwidth instead of mode would be a step in the right direction. 6 kHz would be a reasonable number for bandwidth in the &quot;wide&quot; band portion of the band and 2 kHz would be a reasonable number in the narrow part. This would accomodate all reasonable current useage of the band and leave room for some real experimentation by the service.

    Just my personal opinion, of course. And if if yours is different, that is all the more reason to let your Director know how you feel to cancel my input! :) This W1RFI personal opinion does not represent a clarification of the intent of the minute, though I don't think it is too far off the mark.

    73,
    Ed Hare, W1RFI
     
  8. W8FAX

    W8FAX Ham Member QRZ Page

    I think Mr. Hanynie needs to keep himself better informed as to what the organization he is supposed to be leading is really up to. Nowhere in the proposal does it say anything about digital, or any other mode specifically. As usual, the ARRL is trying to fix something that is not broken. (re: incentive licensing, support of lower license requirements, etc) It has been proven over the last few years that WHAT is proposed to the FCC, and what ENDS UP are often two completely different things. Look at the fiasco over the power levels being arbitrarily changed to PEP, which even the FCC cannot accurately check, let alone hams with limited resources. AM'ers get their bristles up immediately because of the history of the bandwidth question. (BTW, there are MANY SSB sigs on the air now that are VERY wide, as a result of ops trying for &quot;hi fi&quot; sound.) Most AM'ers have spent countless hours either building their own equipment, or refurbishing older stuff to use on the air. This was the original &quot;essence&quot; of ham radio. NOT plug and play. AM is just as viable a mode today as any other. (Try and use SSB when the dopler effect comes into play) I do agree that there is much unused space now in the ham bands and that some re-asignment may be called for, but the ARRL needs to REALLY research what they are proposing to do before they yet again do something &quot;for ham radio&quot; as they have in the past.
     
  9. K4KYV

    K4KYV Subscriber QRZ Page

    What set this off was Minute 64 of the July 2002 ARRL Board Meeting which reads in its entirety:

    &quot;64. On motion of Mr. Frenaye, seconded by Mr. Stinson, it was VOTED that at the next practical opportunity the ARRL shall petition the FCC to revise Part 97 to regulate subbands by signal bandwidth instead of by mode.&quot;

    According to League officials, the intent of the proposal is to allow for digital modes that are too wide for the CW band but not allowed in the phone band. They say they have no desire to restrict the bandwidth of AM or any other mode.

    A potential problem with the bandwidth approach was stated very well by Dave Sumner: &quot;But it's certainly true that in going from a regulatory regime based on mode of emission to one based on bandwidth there are bound to be consequences, intended and otherwise, that will have to be considered very carefully.&quot;

    The AM community is concerned because we remember Docket 20777 back in 1976, and the language in Minute 64 sounds too familiar.

    Another problem with bandwidth limitation is that the present rules are intentionally vague about maximum bandwidth, stating simply that we must use &quot;good engineering and amateur practice.&quot; According to the FCC, this allows amateurs the maximum flexibility for experimentation, self education in the radio art, and communication, all of which are part of the Basis and Purpose of amateur radio as defined by Section 97.1 in the rules. The imposition of rigid, specific bandwidth limitations would end that flexibility and limit the amateur's ability to use and experiment with the various modes. It would accelerate the already existing trend that has largely taken amateur radio away from building, designng and modifying equipment and technical experimentation, towards &quot;plug-in appliance&quot; operating, which means simply buying factory-built rigs, plugging everything in, talking.

    Regardless of mode, there is no specific bandwidth limit that can be defined by &quot;good engineering practice&quot;. It is better to let common sense be our guide. For example, a recently developed speciality of interest in the amateur community has been &quot;hi-fi&quot; SSB. Some of these stations have built or modified SSB rigs capable of transmitting audio 100-5000 hZ or more. Some say the a 5 kHz wide SSB signal is too wide. Well, that depends on the situation. Why wouldn't it be good amateur practice to run audio 20-20,000 Hz, generatiing a 20 kHz wide SSB signal, when there is little or no adjacent activity in the band, such as on 10m when it is otherwise dead? But it might be considered poor amateur practice to transmit even a 5 kHz wide SSB signal when the band is heavily congested. That's the kind of flexibility the FCC is talking about.

    If the sole purpose of amateur radio is to transmit only signals with minimum bandwidth, then let's outlaw AM, SSB, SSTV, PSK-31 and all other modes that take up more bandwidth than plain ol' Morse CW, and make all bands CW-only. The answer of course is that we don't all want to limit ourselves to CW. You may run SSB because you prefer to carry on a voice conversation than to manipulate a key, even though SSB takes up 10 times the bandwidth. By the some token, I may prefer AM operation over SSB, even though AM takes up twice the bandwidth. What justifies where the specific line should be arbitrarily drawn between personal preference and signal bandwidth?

    Another problem with specific bandwidth limits is that it makes no distinction between sidebands generated by spurious distortion products and sidebands generated by the frequency components of the modulation. Splatter caused by overdriving the amplifier is totally different from sidebands generated by the high frequency components of the voice modulation. Most of the obnoxious splatter heard from AM and SSB signals is caused by distortion and flat-topping, not by the fidelity of the audio used to modulate.

    No-one has proposed to eliminate CW from the ham bands, but there are many proponents of eliminating the Morse Code test. Actually, the code test has already been effectively eliminated in the US and elsewhere with the 5 wpm speed. Personally, I am in the camp of the Russians and the Germans, who are seeking to keep the international code requirement for HF licence, and they prefer the minimum speed in their countries to remain at 12 wpm. This requires some commitment of effort beyond a written test with the exact questions and answers available for memorisation. A Russian spokesperson went so far as to say that CW is what separates ham radio from the CB'ers.

    I think the solution to the problem of digital modes is not to redefine the subbands by bandwidth instead of mode, but to eliminate subbands altogether. The US is one of very few countries in the world that still subdivides its bands. Subbands have not existed in most European countries for many years, and Canada recently got rid of its subbands. Since incentive licensing, the US has been saddled with the most complex system of subbands that has ever existed in any country in the world, with our bands divided by both mode and licence class. Other countries separate wideband modes from narrowband modes by voluntary band plans similar to the current ARRL band plan for 160. Amateurs who violate the agreed-on bandplan and repeatedly cause harmful interference to others who follow the plan, could still be cited by the FCC for not following &quot;good amateur practice&quot; as defined under Section 97.101 (a) as well as provisions in 97.101 (b) and (d). The 160m. band has been without subbands ever since it was fully restored to amateur use in the early 1980's, and this has worked well despite the complaints of a small but vocal minority.

    Regarding band congestion and the use of wider-bandwidth modes such as AM and NBFM, eliminating subbands would relieve much of the phone-band congestion that exists today. Typically, during periods of heavy band activity, such as 75m. during Friday and Saturday evenings in the winter, or 20m. throughout the day on weekends, a pattern can be observed. The same pattern was observed on 80 through 15 m. during Field Day, when all modes were in heavy use: CW can be heard in the lower 50 to 75 kHz of the band, and particularly during contests, the bottom 50 kHz may become very congested. The phone bands may become so congested that it is difficult to find a spot to operate, especially during SSB contests. But the frequences that lie between the lower 75 kHz of the &quot;CW band&quot; and the low-frequency edge of the phone band, lie nearly idle. At any time, there may be a half-dozen or so digital modes such as RTTY and PSK-31, along with a substantial number of non-US amateur signals (mostly SSB). There may another half-dozen or so CW signals in the Novice segments. Otherwise, this portion of each HF band has become a de facto &quot;American-free&quot; segment. This is very inefficient use of spectrum space in this country.

    In conclusion, there is no need to impose specific bandwidth regulations and restrict or eliminate certain modes, in order to relieve band congestion and permit the use of new digital modes. Instead, we could simply eliminate subbands altogether and rely on voluntary band plans for any needed separation of modes. Interests in various modes in amateur radio come and go with time. It is much easier to modify voluntary band plans than to go through the cumbersome rulemaking process to adapt to changing technology and interests of the amateur community. The present subband system is based on an era before WWII when the vast majority of hams operated CW, equipment was crude and phone operators were in the minority. This is not to imply that CW should be phased out or that the code test should be eliminated, but that the present subband system prevents the most efficeint utilisation of our existing frequencies.

    Don Chester, K4KYV
     
  10. K6UEY

    K6UEY Ham Member QRZ Page

    DON-K4KYV Well done.
    Your post was not in the vien of my original thinking but you bring out several things that seem to make a lot of sense.
    The one question that does still bother me though as you pointed out there is already a problem with adjacent channel interferance with the so called HI FI SSB signals in a very crowded band at times. Do you really believe that with out band width restrictions individuals will respect the spectrum above and below their signal,it doesn't seem to happening now although as you say the bandwidth regulations are pretty vague at present. Courtesy as well as the written regulations should be followed which is not always the case as frequently as it used to be.
    Good post Don, well done TNX.......    73,   ORV
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page