All posts by Rob Mavis - AE6GE

How to Call CQ

…or even answer one!

by Steve Katz, WB2WIK/6
eHam.net

It seems impossible, but it’s very true that most new hams don’t know how to call CQ. And a lot don’t know how to answer one, either!

We’re all to blame for that. There just isn’t as much “CQing” as there used to be, except during contests. One reason might be that we’re mostly using transceivers with VFO control – as silly as that sounds. Here’s the explanation: Back in the good old days (for me), we used mostly crystal controlled transmitters with separate, tunable receivers. The odds of having a crystal on exactly the same frequency as someone else who was on the band, and within range, at the same time was pretty slim. So, it was common to call CQ, then tune around, looking for answers.

Well, today, we needn’t tune around looking for answers, any answers will be right there on the same frequency we’re on. Experienced operators know it’s easy to break into an ongoing QSO, if you know how and when it’s appropriate to do so. I make a lot of my contacts like that: Just overhear an interesting conversation, wait for a pause, insert my callsign, and join the group. But many newbies, as well as some old-timers, are too shy to do this, or maybe just not very good at it. And it is frowned on by most to break into a conversation when you’ve absolutely nothing to add to it.

Continue reading How to Call CQ

President Expresses Appreciation to Amateur Radio Operators

ARRL News

NEWINGTON, CT, Jan. 16, 2007 – President George W. Bush has written the ARRL to recognize the just-ended Hello Amateur Radio public relations campaign and to extend “greetings to all those celebrating 100 years of voices over the airwaves.” The president said the centennial of Reginald Fessenden’s landmark Christmas Eve 1906 voice broadcast “opened the door for technological advances” that improved the lives of people around the world.

“I appreciate all who work in radio, and I am grateful to the Amateur Radio operators who provide emergency communications that help make our country safer and more secure,” President Bush wrote. “Your good work strengthens our society and represents the American spirit.”

Continue reading President Expresses Appreciation to Amateur Radio Operators

Amateur Radio Fan Distributes in Myanmar

by Phil Dirk
The Tribune (San Luis Obispo)

Jan. 26, 2007 – David Martin of Paso Robles holds an amateur radio license issued by the Karen National Union. That’s the rebel government in a disputed region in Myanmar, the Asian country we used to call Burma. Many of us still call it Burma, including Mr. Martin.

Martin, 60, also holds the highest level amateur radio license issued by the Federal Communications Commission. He operates a one-man business, manufacturing custom radio equipment and antenna components. He also makes animation mechanisms for animated figures such as those we sometimes see in stores and restaurants.

Radio technology is his avocation, and that avocation takes him to such places as Haiti, Albania and Myanmar. What he does there is to install and improve radio stations for Christian organizations.

Continue reading Amateur Radio Fan Distributes in Myanmar

Satellite Competition to Transmit the Voice of Africa

by Lesley Stones
myasdl.co.za

Jan. 25, 2007 – “AN UNUSUAL competition has been launched to find the voice of Africa, with the winner recording a message to be broadcast from SA’s new satellite. ”

The Sumbandila Sat should be launched by May, and once it is switched on the message will be the first signal to be heard from the satellite.

Sumbandila Sat will carry an amateur radio voice identification beacon built by the Southern Africa Amateur Radio Satellite Association. Now the association is looking for the ideal 15-second spoken message and has invited pupils of 16 years or younger to submit their ideas.

Continue reading Satellite Competition to Transmit the Voice of Africa

It’s Official – No Code Required for Ham Radio!

PRNewswire

NEWINGTON, CT, Jan. 24, 2007, – Morse code will no longer be a requirement for earning an Amateur Radio (often called “ham” radio) license. In a ruling published in the January 24 Federal Register, the FCC announced the elimination of testing for Morse code proficiency for all Amateur Radio licenses. The change will take effect February 23. The FCC will also allow new Amateurs to use more frequencies — including those which can talk all over the world.

While many Amateur Radio operators continue to learn and use Morse code, now it is only for their own enjoyment of the skill. Amateur operators have been using newer digital, image, satellite, voice and other modern wireless technologies for years. The elimination of code testing (Report & Order in WT Docket 05-235) signals the end of an era. Within hours following announcement that the code requirement was being dropped, ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio, reported that requests for study materials for new or upgrading licensees more than doubled.

Continue reading It’s Official – No Code Required for Ham Radio!

Amateur Radio Across the World (from Missouri)

Edited by: Jay Scherder
Reported by: Ben Kennedy
www.komu.com

CALLAWAY COUNTY, MO, Jan. 24, 2007 – From Morse code to the radio, to television and most recently the computer, it just keeps getting easier to communicate with others from around the world. But one group is so dedicated to the radio, they formed an amateur club.

Tom Vaccaro is one of the members of the Callaway Amateur Radio League.

“To me HAM radio is worldwide communication, I’ve contacted every state in the union and 168 countries. There are other members of the club here in the Fulton area that are in the top rank.” Tom Vaccaro, Callaway Amateur Radio League.

Dick White has contacted people in 333 countries out of 337. White has even made contact with a man from North Korea after HAM radios were banned and only one person was allowed to set up an amateur radio station.

Continue reading Amateur Radio Across the World (from Missouri)

Missouri Amateur Radio Club Special Event

Mid-Mo Amateur Radio Club Saturday activities

Jefferson City News Tribune

Jan. 23, 2007 – To observe the 90th anniversary of the First Transcontinental Relay, the Mid-Mo Amateur Radio Club has scheduled three events for Saturday [January 27, 2007], to which the public is invited:

  • 10 a.m., A short wreath-laying ceremony will be held at Willis Corwin’s grave in the Jefferson City National Cemetery located in the block just west of Clark Avenue between East McCarty and Miller streets.
    Military rites will be rendered by the honor guard team from Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1003.
  • 11 a.m., A granite plaque will be dedicated at the site of the Corwin home by Mayor John Landwehr, assisted by surviving members of the Corwin family and other dignitaries.
    This property is now part of the Exchange Bank parking lot, immediately behind First Presbyterian Church.
  • 2-5 p.m., The public may view the club’s Special Event operations, where their transmitters and receivers will be set up inside the First Presbyterian Church for a 24-hour operation.
    Radio contacts will be made with as many other amateur radio stations as possible throughout the world. Morse Code will be used extensively in addition to voice operations.

Tenn. Emergency Crews Train w/ Ham Operators

WTVF News Channel 5

FRANKLIN, TN, Jan. 20, 2007 – What would happen if disaster hit Middle Tennessee and wiped out emergency radio communication?

It turns out many communities would rely on amateur radio operators.

When county radios and cell phones won’t work, battery-powered radios manned by ham or amateur radio operators would still be up and running.

A network of such operators would help deliver crucial information and get help where it’s needed. For example, after Hurricane Katrina made landfall along the Gulf Coast in 2005, some of the first calls for help came from ham radios.

Continue reading Tenn. Emergency Crews Train w/ Ham Operators

Bill Puts BPL in Ham’s Way

Ham radio enthusiasts demand study of interference from broadband over power lines.

Red Herring
by Cassimir Medford

Jan. 19, 2007 – A bill wending its way through the United States Congress would force a regulatory agency to determine whether ham radio operators are on the right frequency or just full of static.

Amateur radio operators claim that broadband over power line (BPL) technology is polluting the airwaves used by ham radio fans as well as emergency services.

U.S. Representative Mike Ross (D-Arkansas), a ham radio enthusiast, reintroduced the Emergency Amateur Radio Interference Protection Act, the 2007 version of a bill that was included in the ill-fated Telecommunications Act, which died in the U.S. Senate last year.

Continue reading Bill Puts BPL in Ham’s Way

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FCC drops Morse requirement from amateur radio license

by Andrew Childers
www.hometownannapolis.com

Jan. 15, 2007 – Dropping Morse code from licensing requirements left some amateur radio operators beeping mad, but suited Bruce Becker just fine.

The Pasadena man, president of ARINC’s 20-member amateur radio club, came up one word short on his Morse code test during his last stab at a technician’s license 15 years ago and never found the time to test again.

“Right now I can use a high powered walkie talkie,” he said ruefully.

Last month the Federal Communications Commission announced it would be dropping the 170- year-old Morse code as a requirement from its technician licenses for amateur radio operators. The decision, debated for years, appalled some diehard Morse fans.

Continue reading … .. –. -. .. -. –. — ..-. ..-. Signing Off