The ARRL Letter, Vol 28, No 11 (Friday, March 20, 2009)

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  1. AA7BQ

    AA7BQ QRZ Founder Administrator QRZ Page

    IN THIS EDITION:

    * + Hams Assist Woman Injured in Desert
    * + ARRL Youth Editor: Young People Can Help with Emergency
    Communications, Too!
    * + ARRL Releases Revision of "Experimental Methods in RF Design"
    * + FCC Denies Petition to Increase Size of Amateur Radio Question Pools

    * + Global Simulated Emergency Test Scheduled for April
    * + African Radio Organization Applies for IARU Membership
    * Solar Update
    * IN BRIEF:
    This Week on the Radio
    ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration
    + W1AW QSYs on 160 Meters
    + Addressing Change Coming to ARRL Magazines
    Rich Beebe, N0PV (SK)
    Burghardt to No Longer Sell Amateur Radio Equipment
    Eighth Annual VoIP Conference Scheduled for April 18

    +Available on ARRL Audio News <http://www.arrl.org/arrlletter/audio/>

    ===========================================================
    ==>Delivery problems: First see FAQ
    <http://www.arrl.org/members-only/faq.html#nodelivery>, then e-mail
    <letter-dlvy@arrl.org>
    ==>Editorial questions or comments only: S. Khrystyne Keane, K1SFA
    <k1sfa@arrl.org>
    ===========================================================

    ==> HAMS ASSIST WOMAN INJURED IN DESERT

    It was a sunny day, not a cloud in the sky, when Hal Whiting, KI2U, Todd
    Kluxdal, Kluxdal's father and Whiting's two sons decided to go out to
    the Poverty Mountain area in Arizona to search for airplane crash sites.
    Whiting, who lives in St George, Utah, and Kluxdal, who lives in
    Mesquite, Nevada, took two vehicles that day. According to Whiting, they
    always take two vehicles, just in case a problem pops up: "We always
    have two spare tires, extra gasoline and a tow rope. We take enough food
    and supplies to stay two or three days." In addition to the extra
    equipment, Whiting took the one thing he never goes without -- his ham
    radio.

    "It was a bit after lunch, about 73 miles into our trip," Whiting told
    the ARRL," when we were flagged down by a man wanting to know if we had
    a satellite phone, since he couldn't get coverage on his cell phone."
    Whiting didn't have a satellite phone, but he asked the man if this was
    an emergency. Whiting said that the man told him that one of his friends
    had been injured when her ATV rolled on top of her. "I told him I could
    call for help on my ham radio," he said. The injured woman was knocked
    unconscious by the fall, but had regained consciousness and was speaking
    coherently, but was in pain.

    "I picked up my mic and put out a call on the 146.910 repeater, one of
    four repeaters run by Dean Cox, NR7K," Whiting said. "I called for
    assistance a couple of times when Mac Magee, N6LRG, in the Arizona Cane
    Beds, answered."

    "Mac lives about 50 miles away from the accident site," Whiting said.
    "It's funny -- it's usually Washington County hams who are on the
    repeaters, since that's the direction they're pointed in. But Mac lives
    in Mohave County. And the accident happened in Mohave County. We were
    lucky, since if the call was answered by a ham in Washington County,
    there would have been a delay in them getting the info to the proper
    authorities in Mohave County, but with Mac answering, all our
    information went right to the proper place."

    That morning, Magee told the ARRL that he came into my shack "and for
    some reason, turned on the 2 meter rig and it happened to be on the
    146.910 repeater. I usually have a problem with the repeater 'hearing'
    me, so I rarely use it. About 11:20 Arizona time, I heard someone call
    and say they had emergency traffic and needed help. I fully expected a
    bevy of hams to answer the call, since so many are in range of that
    machine, but after his second call, and no answer, I took it."

    Magee said that the calling station had been flagged down by another
    motorist. "He told me there had been an accident in the vicinity of
    Poverty Mountain," he said. "I really had no idea where that was, but I
    began to write down details. As soon as I had basic info, I called 911.
    The Mohave County Sheriff Office answered; I explained who I was and
    what the call was about."

    The dispatcher asked Magee for the coordinates to the site, and Magee
    relayed the request to Whiting. "I looked at my GPS and gave Mac my
    coordinates, but he said the dispatcher wanted the coordinates from the
    accident site," Whiting said. "So I got in my 4-wheel drive and drove
    down the ridge to the site, about 5600 feet above sea level, and got the
    coordinates. I had to drive back to the ridge, another 1000 feet up, to
    call Mac back, because I couldn't get a signal down there."

    Whiting told the ARRL that in addition to his ham radio, he also carries
    a set of FRS radios. "I gave one of the FRS radios to Todd and he drove
    his Jeep down the ridge to the accident site," he said. "I kept the
    other one and Todd was able to relay me information about the injured
    woman's condition and I was able to relay that information to Mac who in
    turn relayed it to the 911 dispatcher. Mac put the mic right up to the
    phone so the dispatcher could hear exactly what was going on."

    Magee said the 911 dispatcher requested more information: "While Hal was
    replying, I held the phone up to my radio speaker. When he finished with
    the details, I asked them if they copied that. The dispatcher said he
    did, and they held me on the line. Hal and I talked a while as he gave
    more data. When the dispatcher returned, they said a chopper was being
    dispatched from Phoenix! Well, we finished that call after they had the
    actual accident site GPS coordinates that Hal had passed on."

    With emergency help on the way, Kluxdal returned to the ridge and he and
    Whiting and his group went on their way to go check out an airplane
    crash site, the original intent of their trip. "The family members told
    us to go on and get on with our trip, so we did, after making sure they
    were all okay," Whiting said. "So we left to go to the crash site, about
    3-4 miles away. As we were getting ready to return, we saw the
    helicopter overhead, taking the injured woman to the hospital in Las
    Vegas. We returned to the top of the ridge and a sheriff's deputy was
    there and he told us that our GPS coordinates were off, but only by 20
    feet! He said that the helicopter crew was real happy that they were so
    on-target."

    Whiting said they were glad to have been able to help. "This is a remote
    area," he said. "There's only one way in, one way out with no shortcuts
    to get in and out. There are only dirt roads, and it can get very muddy
    when it rains a lot. I was out that way two weeks ago and got stuck in
    the mud there, but it was all dry this past weekend."

    Whiting said he learned a few things after this trip: "I am glad I had
    my radio equipment with me, and I am glad there was someone listening on
    the repeater to take the emergency call. Having the spare FRS radios
    created an efficient means for relay with a non-ham person, and having
    the GPS equipment provided a very effective means for the helicopter
    rescue team to locate the accident, since they did not want the road
    designation information but the exact patient coordinates. It would have
    been useless to have my equipment if there had not been someone
    listening. This proves that there is a good reason to keep your radios
    with you and in good operating condition."

    Whiting, who was first licensed in 1976, is the ARES Assistant Emergency
    Coordinator for Washington County. A CAD Manager and Aerial Photographer
    for Bulloch Brothers in Mesquite, Nevada (he and Kluxdal are
    co-workers), he is currently teaching an Amateur Radio licensing class
    to 13 prospective hams at the Dixie Regional Medical Center in St
    George.

    Magee said that before this incident he had never been involved in an
    actual emergency. "I have established emergency communications networks,
    in particular for the LDS Church in Newbury Park, California, where I
    was the Stake Emergency Communications Coordinator." He told the ARRL:
    "Our communications group won the first worldwide test of the system
    back in the late 1980s. This is like ARRL Field Day, but involved mostly
    LDS members and facilities, then under the name of Mercury Amateur Radio
    Association (MARA) <http://www.mara.net/>. I feel very pleased in
    knowing that I had the opportunity to serve in this rescue incident and
    that every penny I spent on my system, radio and antenna was certainly
    worth it. In these days of extensive cell phone service and coverage,
    isn't it satisfying to know that ham radio can still be of use for
    public service?"

    ==> ARRL YOUTH EDITOR: YOUNG PEOPLE CAN HELP WITH EMERGENCY
    COMMUNICATIONS, TOO!

    ARRL Youth Editor Duncan MacLachlan, KU0DM, of Prairie Village, Kansas,
    says many young hams want to help out with Emergency Communications and
    ARES activities, but really don't know where to start. "One disadvantage
    of being younger hams is the fact that legal guardians are a must for
    most situations," MacLachlan said. "While a young ham may not be able to
    go out and save the day with a handheld transceiver after a large storm,
    there are many ways they can aid in emergency operations."

    MacLachlan said that the first step in helping to support Emergency
    Communications is to join the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) or
    a local club that works with city or county to provide emergency
    communications services. "When you approach your EC -- the Emergency
    Coordinator, basically the president of that ARES group -- I recommend
    that you have discussed with your parents what you can and can't do in
    an emergency in terms of Amateur Radio response. If your parents are
    like mine, chances are they're not fond of the idea of having their kid
    running around a disaster zone in the name of emergency communications.
    I'd recommend asking your EC if there is a position you could fulfill
    from home, or even in the EOC (Emergency Operations Center) where
    operations are carried out."

    One example of a duty that a young ham could fulfill at the EOC would be
    Net duty. In an emergency response effort, MacLachlan said that hams
    establish a Net to relay emergency traffic or other information to the
    people responsible for responding to the event: "Chances are the Net
    will last longer than 10 hours, and since hams are human, the primary
    Net Control (NC) will need a break at least several times in that time
    period -- you could help as back-up. Another duty that could be
    performed is shadowing various emergency response personnel for the
    city. Believe it or not, not a lot of Emergency Managers have their
    Amateur Radio license. If they go out to drive around and survey damage,
    they need to have a link to the ham radio Net in case they hear anything
    they need to respond to."

    MacLachlan recommends that young hams contact their EC and ask what
    roles there are that they could perform for the group in an emergency.
    "If you know your parents' threshold of what you can and can't do, let
    the EC know upfront that you do have limits," he cautions. "Make sure
    you participate in as many emergency communication drills as you can and
    consult with your EC and other members."

    According to ARRL Emergency Preparedness and Response Manager Dennis
    Dura, K2DCD, young hams also need to check with their local government
    officials, as well. "Due to legal considerations, not all emergency
    management officials can have young people in their domains, such as an
    EOC," Dura explained. "While you can still help out with your ARES
    group, you might not be allowed to help out in the EOC."

    MacLachlan strongly encourages local Emergency Coordinators to think of
    ways of creating positions that younger hams could fulfill in an
    emergency. "We're the next generation," MacLachlan said, "and starting
    emergency response at a young age is the best training for when we're
    ready to take the helm."

    ==> ARRL RELEASES REVISION OF "EXPERIMENTAL METHODS IN RF DESIGN"

    The revised first edition of "Experimental Methods in RF Design" is now
    available from the ARRL <http://www.arrl.org/catalog/?item=9239>.
    Co-written and updated by Wes Hayward, W7ZOI, Rick Campbell, KK7B, and
    Bob Larkin, W7PUA, "Experimental Methods in RF Design" explores wide
    dynamic range, low distortion radio equipment, the use of direct
    conversion and phasing methods and digital signal processing. Use the
    models and discussion included in the book to design, build and measure
    equipment at both the circuit and the system level.

    Readers are immersed in the communications experience by building
    equipment that contributes to understanding basic concepts and circuits.
    The updated version of "Experimental Methods in RF Design" is loaded
    with new, unpublished projects. Presented to illustrate the design
    process, the equipment is often simple, lacking the frills found in
    current commercial gear. The authors understand that measurement is a
    vital part of experimentation. Readers are encouraged to perform
    measurements on the gear as they build it. Techniques to determine
    performance and the measurement equipment needed for the evaluations are
    discussed in detail and include circuits that the reader can build.

    Contents of "Experimental Methods in RF Design" include:
    * Basic Investigations in Electronics
    * Amplifiers, Filters, Oscillators and Mixers
    * Superheterodyne Transmitters and Receivers
    * Measurement Equipment
    * Direct Conversion Receivers
    * Phasing Receivers and Transmitters
    * DSP Components
    * DSP Applications in Communications
    * Field Operation, Portable Gear and Integrated Stations

    A follow-up to the widely popular "Solid-State Design for the Radio
    Amateur" (published in 1977), "Experimental Methods in RF Design"
    includes a CD-ROM with design software, listings for DSP firmware and
    supplementary articles. It is available from the ARRL for $49.95.

    ==> FCC DENIES PETITION TO INCREASE SIZE OF AMATEUR RADIO QUESTION POOLS


    In April 2008, Michael Mancuso, KI4NGN, of Raleigh, North Carolina,
    filed a petition with the FCC, seeking to increase the size of the
    question pools that make up the Amateur Radio licensing exams
    <http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/prod/ecfs/retrieve.cgi?native_or_pdf=pdf&id_do
    cument=6520001890>. Mancuso sought to increase the question pool from 10
    times the number of questions on an exam to 50 times more questions. On
    March 19, 2009, the Commission notified Mancuso that it was denying his
    petition
    <http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-09-618A1.pdf>.

    In his 2008 petition, Mancuso claimed that the current question pool is
    too easy to memorize and "that there has been a significant increase in
    the number of Amateur Radio operators receiving their licenses over at
    least the last decade or more who do not appear to possess the knowledge
    indicated by the class of license that they have received. Most
    discussion about this topic, both on the air and on Internet forums,
    generally refers to these widespread observations as the 'dumbing down'
    of Amateur Radio. It has been widely assumed that the cause of this
    observed situation is based upon the subject material addressed by the
    license examinations, that the material requirements specified for the
    examinations does [sic] not meet some minimum level of knowledge
    expected by some or many in the Amateur Radio community."

    The FCC pointed out to Mancuso that each applicant for a new or upgraded
    Amateur Radio operator license "is required to pass a written
    examination in order to prove that he or she possesses the operational
    and technical qualifications required to perform properly the duties of
    an amateur service operator licensee, i.e., that he or she is qualified
    to be an amateur service licensee."

    The Commission summed up Mancuso's petition, saying, "You argue that the
    current question pool size is no longer adequate, because online
    practice examinations enable examinees to memorize a question pool
    without fully comprehending the subject matter being tested.
    Consequently, you propose to increase the size of the question pools, in
    order to hinder memorization."

    The Commission concluded that Mancuso did not present grounds for the
    Commission to amend its rules: "As noted above, the purpose of the
    examinations is not to demonstrate an applicant's comprehension of
    certain material, but rather to determine whether he or she can properly
    operate an amateur station. Moreover, your contention that there has
    been 'a significant increase in the number of Amateur Radio
    operators...who do not appear to possess the knowledge indicated by
    their class of license' is not supported by any data or facts."

    The FCC pointed out to Mancuso that the Commission's Rules only dictate
    the minimum number of questions for each question pool for the three
    Amateur Radio license classes. This, the Commission told Mancuso, "does
    not prevent the National Conference of Volunteer Examiner Coordinators
    (NCVEC) from increasing the number of questions in a question pool
    should it decide that this is appropriate. We conclude, therefore, that
    the petition presents no evidence of an existing problem or other reason
    for a rule change."

    ARRL Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ, said that while he
    agreed with the Commission's decision, he disagrees with the rationale
    behind it. "The International Radio Regulations require that
    administrations verify the operational and technical qualifications of
    prospective amateur licensees, using Recommendation ITU-R M.1544 for
    guidance," he said. "The present examinations confirm to this
    requirement."

    ==> GLOBAL SIMULATED EMERGENCY TEST SCHEDULED FOR APRIL

    IARU Region 1 has invited the HQ stations of IARU Member-Societies, as
    well as the EOCs of Emergency Communications Groups (ECGs), to
    participate in the 2009 Global Simulated Emergency Test (GlobalSET), on
    Saturday, April 18, 2009 from 1100-1500 UTC
    <http://www.arrl.org/news/files/2009GlobalSET.pdf>. The GlobalSET will
    take place on and near the emergency Center of Activity (CoA)
    frequencies on 80, 40, 20, 17 and 15 meters, ± QRM. IN the US, ARES
    groups that will be representing EOCs need to register through their
    IARU International Emergency Communications Coordinator. Registrations
    should be e-mailed to ARRL Emergency Preparedness and Response Manager
    Dennis Dura, K2DCD <k2dcd@arrl.org>, and must include the call sign
    (this will be used as the name of the ECG) and the EOC that the ECG is
    representing, as well as a list of the names and call signs of all
    operators involved.

    The intent of the 2009 GlobalSET is for established IARU Headquarters
    stations and EOCs to test their capabilities. Dura said that W1AW will
    be the official ARRL and ARES representative for this event. Other ARES
    groups that participate from EOCs (as per their established response
    plan) are also invited to participate. "While we appreciate individual
    interest in participating, the purpose of the GlobalSET is to allow IARU
    Member-Societies and other EOCs they support to test their
    infrastructures and procedures at the highest levels," Dura said. "Other
    events, such as ARRL Field Day and the annual ARRL SET are available for
    individuals to test their preparedness."

    According to IARU Region 1 Emergency Communications Coordinator Greg
    Mossop, G0DUB, the GlobalSET is not a contest, but an emergency
    communications exercise to develop skills needed to provide an
    international emergency network.

    Mossop said that the GlobalSET has four objectives:
    * To increase the common interest in emergency communications.
    * To test how usable the CoA frequencies are across ITU regions.
    * To create practices for international emergency communications.
    * To practice the relaying of messages using all modes: Voice (SSB),
    Data or CW.

    "The exercise will build on earlier GlobalSET exercises and will focus
    on generating and relaying messages in a common format across country
    borders, rather than the information gathering capabilities that we've
    done in the past," Mossop said. "We will pass messages in a format that
    we may have to use for the agencies we may serve. The message exchange
    will take longer than in previous exercises, and stations will have to
    be patient to transmit their messages across country and language
    boundaries."

    Each participating station is to send messages to their Regional HQ
    station using the IARU International Emergency Operating Procedure
    <http://www.darc.de/referate/notfunk/info/emerg-ww.pdf>, using IARU
    message forms <http://www.iaru-r1.org/IARU-msg1.pdf>. Stations should
    relay the messages they receive to their Regional HQ station; the Region
    2 station is TG0AA in Guatemala. To comply with license regulations in
    some countries, all messages should be addressed to Greg Mossop, G0DUB,
    and should come from a licensed radio amateur. Messages should contain
    fewer than 25 words and should not include anything that would be
    considered as a "real emergency" message by a listener. Mossop suggests
    constructing messages that include weather conditions, the number of
    operators at the station or even an interesting fact about the station.
    "There is no limit on the number of messages to be sent," he said, "but
    each one must have a unique message number." Regional HQ stations will
    not be sending messages, only receiving them.

    Mossop recommends that in order to create "a more realistic situation,
    please limit your transmitting power during the exercise to 100 W. We
    are especially interested in stations operating mobile/portable and/or
    on emergency power."

    Usually held in May, the 2009 GlobalSET was moved to April to tie into
    World Amateur Radio Day. The theme of the 2009 World Amateur Radio Day
    is "Amateur Radio: Your Resource in Disaster and Emergency
    Communication." "This is an ideal opportunity to showcase the work of
    emergency communications groups around the world," Mossop said.

    For more information on the 2009 GlobalSET, including a list of CoA
    frequencies for Regions 1, 2 and 3, please see the GlobalSET
    announcement <http://www.arrl.org/news/files/2009GlobalSET.pdf>.

    ==> AFRICAN RADIO ORGANIZATION APPLIES FOR IARU MEMBERSHIP

    In the IARU Calendar, No 188 dated March 11, 2009, IARU Secretary David
    Sumner, K1ZZ, reported that the Union des Radioamateurs du Congo (URAC)
    in the Republic of the Congo has applied to become an IARU
    Member-Society (IARU Proposal No 245) <http://www.iaru.org/cal188.html>.

    Sumner said that the Republic of the Congo (whose capital is
    Brazzaville) is not to be confused with the Democratic Republic of the
    Congo (whose capital is Kinshasa); that country's amateurs are already
    represented in the IARU by the Association des Radio Amateurs du Congo
    (ARAC). The Republic of the Congo was formerly a part of French
    Equatorial Africa and became independent in 1960. Its ITU-allocated call
    sign prefix is TN.

    URAC was formed in Brazzaville on October 8, 2008. Its officers are
    President Mao Monguimet, TN5MM; Secretary General Ulysse Yinda, and
    Treasurer Chynauldat Bangue. The URAC lists 15 members on its roster,
    including three licensed radio amateurs.

    Sumner said that the URAC has stated to the IARU that it has the ability
    to meet its financial obligations as a member of the IARU through fees
    from members; that it is legally able to act in the furtherance of IARU
    objectives within the Republic of the Congo; that it will adequately
    represent the interests of radio amateurs throughout the country, and
    that it will adhere to the Constitutions of the IARU and of IARU Region
    1. The IARU Region 1 Executive Committee has examined URAC's application
    and has found it to be in order.

    In accordance with Bylaw 3 of the Bylaws of the International Amateur
    Radio Union <http://www.iaru.org/iarucnst.html>, it is proposed that
    Union des Radioamateurs du Congo be elected to IARU membership. A voting
    sheet for Proposal No 245 was sent to all IARU Member-Societies.
    Member-Societies need to submit their votes no later than August 11,
    2009; votes received after this date cannot be counted.

    ==>SOLAR UPDATE

    Tad "By banks where Sun beams earliest rest" Cook, K7RA, this week
    reports: This reporting week -- March 12-18 -- there were no sunspots,
    but we saw a couple of promising magnetic anomalies which faded away
    before ever emerging as sunspots. Sunspot numbers for March 12-18 were
    0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0 and 0 with a mean of 0. The 10.7 cm flux was 68.7,
    68.2, 68.5, 68.4, 69.4, 68.8 and 68.4 with a mean of 68.6. The estimated
    planetary A indices were 6, 16, 9, 7, 5, 3 and 1 with a mean of 6.7. The
    estimated mid-latitude A indices were 6, 10, 7, 5, 4, 3 and 0 with a
    mean of 5. For more information concerning radio propagation, visit the
    ARRL Technical Information Service Propagation page
    <http://www.arrl.org/tis/info/propagation.html>. To read this week's
    Solar Report in its entirety, check out the W1AW Propagation Bulletin
    page <http://www.arrl.org/w1aw/prop/>. This week's "Tad Cookism" brought
    to you by John Clare's "May" <http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/may-2/>.

    __________________________________

    ==>IN BRIEF:

    * This Week on the Radio: This week, the Feld Hell Sprint and the 10-10
    International Mobile Contest are on March 21. On March 21-22, be sure to
    tune in for the the Russian DX Contest, the Oklahoma QSO Party and the
    North Dakota QSO Party. The BARTG HF RTTY Contest and the Virginia QSO
    Party are March 21-23. The 9K 15 Meter Contest and the QRP Homebrewer
    Sprint are March 23. The SKCC Sprint is March 25. Next week, look for
    the CQ WW WPX Contest (SSB) and the EU EME Contest on March 28-29. All
    dates, unless otherwise stated, are UTC. See the ARRL Contest Branch
    page <http://www.arrl.org/contests/>, the ARRL Contest Update
    <http://www.arrl.org/contests/update/> and the WA7BNM Contest Calendar
    <http://www.hornucopia.com/contestcal/index.html> for more info. Looking
    for a Special Event station? Be sure to check out the ARRL Special Event
    Station Web page <http://www.arrl.org/contests/spev.html>.

    * ARRL Continuing Education Course Registration: Registration remains
    open through Sunday, March 22, 2009, for these online course sessions
    beginning on Friday, April 3, 2009: Amateur Radio Emergency
    Communications Level 1, Radio Frequency Interference, Antenna Design and
    Construction, Ham Radio (Technician) License Course, Analog Electronics,
    and Digital Electronics. Each online course has been developed in
    segments -- learning units with objectives, informative text, student
    activities and quizzes. Courses are interactive, and some include direct
    communications with a Mentor/Instructor. Students register for a
    particular session that may be 8, 12 or 16 weeks (depending on the
    course) and they may access the course at any time of day during the
    course period, completing lessons and activities at times convenient for
    their personal schedule. Mentors assist students by answering questions,
    reviewing assignments and activities, as well as providing helpful
    feedback. Interaction with mentors is conducted through e-mail; there is
    no appointed time the student must be present -- allowing complete
    flexibility for the student to work when and where it is convenient. To
    learn more, visit the CCE Course Listing page
    <http://www.arrl.org/cep/student> or contact the Continuing Education
    Program Coordinator <cce@arrl.org>.

    * W1AW QSYs on 160 Meters: On Monday, March 9, the Hiram Percy Maxim
    Memorial Station, W1AW <http://www.arrl.org/w1aw.html>, began using a
    new 160 meter frequency for its CW transmissions. According to W1AW
    Station Manager Joe Carcia, NJ1Q, there was "increasing activity" near
    the previous bulletin frequency of 1817.5 kHz. "In order to reduce the
    possibility of interference, W1AW has moved to 1802.5 kHz," Carcia said.


    * Addressing Change Coming to ARRL Magazines: A change in the postal
    regulations for flat mail processing takes effect March 29 that will
    require the addressing area on the front of any flat, bulk-processed
    mail (such as magazines) be positioned to new specifications. According
    to ARRL Sales and Marketing Manager Bob Inderbitzen, NQ1R, QST, QEX and
    NCJ magazines will all have the delivery address imprinted upside down,
    but positioned in the same area on the front covers.

    * Rich Beebe, N0PV (SK): South Dakota Section Manager Rich Beebe, N0PV,
    of Sioux Falls, passed away March 16. He was 46. Beebe had served as
    Section Manager since October 2002, running unopposed for each two-year
    term of office. According to the ARRL Field Organization Rules and
    Regulations, ARRL Membership and Volunteer Programs Manager Dave Patton,
    NN1N, in consultation with Dakota Division Director Jay Bellows, K0QB,
    will appoint a new Section Manager to fulfill Beebe's remaining term of
    office that ends March 31, 2010.

    * Burghardt to No Longer Sell Amateur Radio Equipment: On March 16, Jim
    Smith, W0MJY, owner of Burghardt Amateur Center in Watertown, South
    Dakota <http://www.burghardt-amateur.com/>, announced that the company
    will no longer sell Amateur Radio transceivers and accessories. The
    company, now called Burghardt Radio Repair, has canceled all backorders.
    In an e-mail, Smith blamed the current economic conditions for the
    change that forced the company "to re-evaluate our goals and direction.
    We will continue to provide radio repair service as it has become a very
    busy business. Our technicians are very experienced and parts
    inventories are good. Thank you for your support in the past and we look
    forward to continuing our relationships through our servicing facility."
    Jim Smith's son, Mike Smith, KC0FTM, told the ARRL that even though the
    company has had to lay off employees in the past couple of months,
    "Burghardt will concentrate on service, just like we have been doing
    since 1973." Burghardt was founded in 1937 by Stan Burghardt, W0IT (SK),
    as Burghardt Radio Supply. He sold the company to Smith in 1982,
    remaining active in the company until January 2002. Burghardt passed
    away in 2004 at the age of 93.

    * Eighth Annual VoIP Conference Scheduled for April 18: Each spring
    since 2002, the Nevada Amateur Radio Repeaters, Inc (NARRI) has
    sponsored the Annual VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) Conference in
    Las Vegas. Attendees have discussed such protocols as the Internet Radio
    Linking Project (IRLP). IRLP System Designer David Cameron, VE7LTD, was
    the keynote speaker for the first six years of the conference. The 2009
    conference is open to discuss all forms of VoIP communications. This
    year's meeting encompasses a broader scope, including all major VoIP
    systems in use by the Amateur Radio community such as IRLP, EchoLink,
    EchoIRLP, All Star, D-Star and DV Dongle; VoIP for emergency
    communications will also be on the agenda. According to Conference Chair
    Kent Johnson, W7AOR, there will be plenty of presentations and
    demonstrations at the conference. The conference is from 8:30-5 on
    Saturday, April 18 in Las Vegas in the conference area of the Circus
    Circus Hotel, under the North High Rise; enter from northeast side of
    the swimming pool. There will be plenty of presentations with
    demonstrations. For more information, please contact Johnson via e-mail
    <w7aor@narri.org> or visit the VoIP Conference Web site
    <http://www.narri.org/Annual_VoIP_Conference.html>.

    ===========================================================
    The ARRL Letter is published Fridays, 50 times each year, by the
    American Radio Relay League: ARRL--the national association for Amateur
    Radio, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111; tel 860-594-0200; fax
    860-594-0259; <http://www.arrl.org>. Joel Harrison, W5ZN, President.

    The ARRL Letter offers a weekly e-mail digest of essential and general
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  2. NN4RH

    NN4RH Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Hmm. I guess I'll go first. And I haven't posted a blatant troll or mis-paraphrased anyone lately, so here goes.

    So as far as the FCC is concerned, it's OK to operate an amateur station without comprehending what you're doing?
     
  3. W6EM

    W6EM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Doesn't surprise me, Ron. After all, the new "sheriff," Ms. Smith, could care less what goes on with the spectrum.

    Next, ABC Fuzz-Supply will be selling not just Kenwood 2M gear, but the others as well.
     
  4. WA6ITF

    WA6ITF Ham Member QRZ Page

    No. We are heading back to the way things were when I got my license in the 1950's. Back then it was (1) Get a basic license. (2) Get on the air. (3) Make lots of mistakes. (4) Get scolded by your peers. (5) Learn from your mistakes and become a knowledgeable operator. (6) Join the A-1 Ops. (7) Begin scolding the newcomers who make the same mistakes you made.
     
  5. WO2RET

    WO2RET Ham Member QRZ Page

    FCC apathy

    Since the code requirement has been dropped, the 75/80 meter band has just about become a CBer's delight. The code requirement should at least be reinstated for Extra and I would like to see it put back in for General. Either that or beef up the FCC regulators and start strictly enforcing part 97. I've only been an amateur operator since 2004 but I studied hard and worked my way up to Extra and if I can learn 5wpm code ANYBODY can. What I hear on the 75/80 band now is one of the reasons I took the CB units out of my vehicles.
     
  6. WA6ITF

    WA6ITF Ham Member QRZ Page

    Obviously you were not around in the late 1950's when we had what amounted to all sorts of "hate groups" inhabiting 75. Or in the 60's and 70's when we had entities like "The Free Thinkers Net" and others of its ilk. And guess what -- no CB'ers -- all Advanced and Extra -- most having taken their tests in front of FCC examiners.

    75 today is little different than it was when I first got licensed and the type of operation found on it is one of the reasons I have avoided it like the plague. But please do not say its CB'ers or any other particular group. It isnt any "group." Its the nature of those there since time in memorium -- and nothing more.

    de
    WA6ITF
     
  7. K5CO

    K5CO Ham Member QRZ Page

    in Ca

    THAT IS PROBABLY TRUE IN GIRLIEMANLANDIA; NOT NECESSARILY IN THE SANE PORTIONS OF THE CONTINENT.
     
  8. W6EM

    W6EM Ham Member QRZ Page

    I would agree, generally. The root of the 75 problem is, despite all of the spectrum available, a "net-privileged" mindset. From day one, 75 has been a reserved-space band. So, it follows that individuals who get burnt out or don't like the nets stake their claims and take their friends with them.

    The CB mentality, even expressions like "come-back," is alive and well on 160 and 40 as well as local 2M repeaters. That sure as heck wasn't around in the 50s and 60s. Or, even the 70s.
     
  9. W5HTW

    W5HTW Ham Member QRZ Page


    I hope so, except for the part about the A1 Operator's Club. The rest of it is a process of learning. That was the purpose of the Novice class license, but it ws not the purpose of the Extra Class license, as it is today.


    I agree with K5CO. I operated 75 meters for years without hearing ANY of that garbage that is on there today. There were nets and there were roundtables, and there were individual contacts. First I ever heard crap on 75 was when I ran across W2OY and tried to have a contact with him.

    But I also remember 75 meters starting to go sour in the very late 1960s, especially around cities, where the new "tune in, turn on, drop out, and the hell with the rules" philosophy was sweeping the nation. It began to enter amateur radio as well. For the very first time I heard free use of light profanity. Still, it didn't really get bad, except perhaps in Mexifornia, until the mid 80s.

    Even today I hear a LOT of interesting conversations on 75 meters. I don't operate there but I listen. It isn't all CB and profanity and 'up yours.' But it is pretty bad. I don't think there will ever be an effort to change it, as ham radio is not part of the FCC's agenda, as long as we mess up our own sandbox and stay away from others.

    Ed
     
  10. AB0WR

    AB0WR Ham Member QRZ Page

    Your experience was totally different than mine. My elmer gave me an old receiver and I listened for a year *before* he would even give me the Novice test.

    The right way to operate was pretty obvious from just *listening*.

    tim ab0wr
     
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