April 8 Meeting
* Skywarn by Scott W8UFO
* Boy Scout AirFest and Radio Scouting by Brian KC4LMD
At our April 8 meeting, Scott W8UFO will bring us up to date on the Skywarn spotting network - how it works and how you can be a part of it.
And Brian KC4LMD will share the plans for AirFest 2014, the first Boy Scout Camporee of its type to be held in Romeoville August 8-10. In addition to exposing scouts to all that the field of aviation has to offer, AirFest will also host special event station K2BSA/9 and other “Radio Scouting” activities.
Please join us Tuesday, April 8, 7:30p, at the Heller Nature Center, 2821 Ridge Rd. in Highland Park. Bring a friend!
May 13 Wire Antennas and Antenna Modeling
June 10 Auxiliary Power & Field Day Preparation
July 8 Fox Hunt (Location TBD)
Aug 12 Building Your HF Station - 101
Sept 9 QRP Night - Emily Oaks
Meetings are at Heller Nature Center unless otherwise noted.
*** Many presentations from past meetings may be accessed in the Resources/Downloads section here.
April 27 VE Session
The North Shore Radio Club will be conducting Volunteer Exams (VE) for all grades of the amateur radio FCC License on Sunday, April 27, 2014 at the Glenview Public Library - 1930 Glenview Road in Glenview, in the “Multipurpose Room”, from 1:30 P.M. to 4:30 P.M.
All inquiries should be made to the session coordinator:
Mike Dusa W9MJD
Please DO NOT contact the library.
There is a nominal fee of $15.00 for the session, that covers all testing materials. To better prepare for the session, please contact Mike Dusa in advance so we can have all of the materials available.
February VE Session Results
The VE session at the Glenview Library Feb. 9 administered by Mike W9MJD and NSRC VE volunteers, resulted in two upgrades and five new Techs.
Upgrades to Extra Class:
KB1ZVX Richard Freeman, Glenview
K9LPK Dave Russell, Zion
New Technician Class:
KD9AMF John Drouillard, Morton Grove
KD9AMG Jonathan York, Winnetka
KD9AMH Mariusz Gladys, Addison
KD9AMI Ilo Miladinoski, Woodridge
KD9AMJ Tony Plovich, Naperville
Congratulation to all, and thanks to our VE’s for their efforts!
September Emily Oaks QRP Results
Participation this year was excellent - antenna and table space was at a premium. (See George KK9X’s photos here)
Propagation wasn’t the greatest, but an opening over the Pole on 20m helped a few members.
Congratulations to the 2013 “Emily” winners for QSOs with greatest distance/watt:
CW Randy K9OR QSO with RA9MP
5662 miles/5 watts 1132 miles/watt
SSB Greg W9GAK QSO with RZ9UI
5751 miles/5 watts 1150 miles/watt
Digi Warren KC9IL QSO with KJ4IZW
672 miles/1 watt 672 miles/watt
No ‘pure homebrew’ rigs were entered this year, so no winner in that category.
Other notable efforts:
SSB Rob K9RST QSO with K7XE
1335 miles/5 watts 267 miles/watt
SSB Derick AB9PR QSO with KF4GDX
564 miles/5 watts 113 miles/watt
Introducing Boy Scouts to Ham Radio
We have set up a small station at the Boy Scout camp for the Northeast Illinois Council, called Makajawan. When I was up to visit last week, there were 23 scouts taking the Radio merit badge! The station consists of an Icom 7200, donated to the program by Icom as a loaner for the season. We also have a Yeasu 757GX, an older radio but which seems fairly reliable, and an Alinco VHF station with two Baofeng HT radios.
The boys have been having fun with the VHF radios running around camp doing search and rescue drills. The Icom radio is working very well both as a PSK demo and as an HF voice station. This is connected to a 20/40 meter trap dipole. The Icom works brilliantly with Ham Radio Deluxe, so you have complete control of the rig from a laptop interface. That was really a great deal of fun to work with. Greg Karlove W9GAK helped me set up the station and the interface earlier this summer. We both got more ticks than radio contacts! The Yaesu was not working very well at all, so I did some antenna repair work and got it to hear better, but I have little confidence that it will last the summer with the antenna we provided. The balun had a dead short!
I was surprised to see that there are no AM radio stations to be heard during the day, we are that far north…plus that says more about the state of AM radio! There have been hams stopping by the station every week to help the boys get on the air, and frankly, this might be the weakest link. We need to find a way to make the station available to the boys at night. Also, this set up is currently only on East camp, which has about 300 scouts. There is another camp across the lake that does not have a station at all.
Based on what I have seen, I am very encouraged by the participation and interest. There is plenty of opportunity for us to do more. Next year, I am hoping I can spend more time at camp and help generate more interest in this activity.
NSRC 2013 Field Day
Field Day 2013 was held once again at the Grove Cultural Center in Lake Forest, June 22-23. We had a great turnout - whether to enjoy the hospitality tent, the Saturday picnic, take advantage of VE testing, learn how to communicate by satellite, or operate in the phone, cw, vhf or GOTA tents.
Although the weather was favorable for Saturday and Sunday, band conditions were mediocre - marginal on 15, nil on 10, minimal on 6 - with S9 noise on the low bands. Our preliminary score tabulation shows about 11,400 points - down some from last year, in large part due to the noise level. (Be sure to read K9RST’s President’s Blog). While we were #1 in 3A in 2012, we’ll have to wait until Fall when scores are published to see how we did this year. Regardless, we always have fun!
NSRC 2012 Field Day Video
This is a short video showing some of the activities at the 2012 annual ARRL radio emergency event, called Field Day. North Shore Radio Club created three HF radio stations, a VHF weak signal station and a GOTA, Get on the Air station for newer operators. This is ham radio’s premiere summer event. The goal is to contact as many stations as we can in a 24 hour period, so it is part contact, part social and all fun, especially when the weather behaves!
North Shore DMR is Here!
The North Shore Radio Club is now sponsoring a 440 DMR repeater, connected to over 165 repeaters worldwide and 3 in the Chicagoland area. DMR is ham radio’s newest 2-way communications protocol, is an international open standard, and features 2 voice channels from one repeater that occupy 1/2 the bandwidth of an analog repeater. DMR radios are made by multiple manufacturers, feature excellent battery life, and are very affordable.
NSRC JNOS BBS/Packet Cluster/Callsign Lookup/WX Server and Winlink Servers Upgraded
UPDATE 12/17/12: The JNOS BBS/Packet Cluster/Callsign Lookup engine and Winlink Server has been upgraded to a new PC and more reliabile internet connection. Please give it a try.
The NSRC Tech Team welcomes you to our new NS9RC-1 JNOS packet BBS system on 145.01 MHz with 30W of power at over 100’ high from Techny. This isn’t your traditional BBS system. It has wormhole connections to other BBS stations in the USA, Canada, and Australia. It has a DX cluster and a feed from Weather Underground for weather conditions and forecasts. As usual, all you need is a 1200 bps TNC, a VHF radio, antenna, and a computer with a terminal program.
Please visit our Tech Blog to learn more about using JNOS for the first time.
We also have a working NS9RC-10 Winlink RMS Packet server on 145.61 MHz 1200 baud for sending and receiving email over RF. Learn more about it here.
Northern Cook County Skywarn Net Frequency Change
Northern Cook County Skywarn (WX9NC) is moving its spotter nets to our own 147.345+ MHz repeater with a tone PL of 107.2 Hz effective this spring. Our 2m repeater has much improved coverage and we hope that more hams will be able to participate in spotting severe weather for the National Weather Service. Severe Weather Net controllers for 2013 are still needed! For more information or to volunteer your services visit here.