New Club Members
Shelby NC Hamcation 2013 - KA9QJX
Early NSRC History

February 9 Meeting:
Border Patrol Radio

At our February meeting, Ed N9EP will share with us the challenges of installing an upgraded communications network for the Border Patrol, covering 1200 miles of border and 20,000 square miles of operating area in Maine. Ed does land mobile radio product and system design for Motorola. You may have worked Ed in any number of contests, and you may have used his repeater system on 442.8.

Come join us Tuesday, February 9, 7:30pm, at the Heller Nature Center in Highland Park. Bring a friend!


* Meetings are held the second Tuesday of the month at the Heller Nature Center unless otherwise noted. Topics are subject to change.

* Many presentations from past meetings may be accessed in the Resources/Downloads section here.

Upcoming meetings:

Mar 8 Living with Lightning

Apr 12 Building Your Own SDR Radio

May 10 Public Service

Jun 14 Field Day Prep/Surface Mount Devices

NSRC Winter Banquet Sat. Feb 20

We will be returning to the Chevy Chase Country Club (1000 N. Milwaukee in Wheeling) for this year’s banquet.  They have made significant improvements to the facility since the last time we were there. 

Our guest speaker will be Mike Nishi from Chicago Event Management, the Team that produced the Bank of America Chicago Marathon.  He will discuss some of the behind-the-scenes processes of managing such a large complex event with tens of thousands of participants.

The dinner includes the usual social activities, presentation of a few awards and basically having a great time!! Please join us. 

6:15 Social hour
7:10 Dinner
8:10 Presentations      

Please make your reservation before Feb 1.
You can reserve with PayPal here.
Or you can use this order form.

Upcoming VE Sessions

The North Shore Radio Club will be conducting Volunteer Exams for all grades of the amateur radio FCC License on Sunday February 28, and Sunday April 24,  at the Glenview Public Library - 1930 Glenview Road in Glenview, in the “Multipurpose Room” at 1:30 P.M.

All inquiries should be made to the session coordinator:

Mike Dusa  W9MJD
ARRL Liaison
Email 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.

Note: Candidates must present a legal photo ID. This requirement is usually met with a driver’s license, but it can be a passport or other legal identification card with the candidate’s photo on it.
When no photo ID is available, the candidate must present any two of the following:

- Non-photo ID/driver’s license (some states still have them)
- Social Security Card
- Birth certificate (must have the appropriate seal)
- Minor’s work permit, school report card, school ID card or library card
- Utility bill, bank statement or other business correspondence that specifically names the person
- Postmarked envelope addressed to the person at his or her current mailing address as it appears on the Form 605.

Amateur Radio: Get Your First License and On the Air!

The North Shore Radio Club will again be offering its Technician License Class in Vernon Hills starting January 28, 2016. Classes will meet on Thursdays, 6:00-8:30 p.m., for nine weeks. (There will be no class on March 24.) The FCC license exam will be administered in the final class meeting on March 31.

The class is open to students of all ages. We encourage parents, relatives or older siblings to accompany and support younger students. Students should plan one to two hours of outside study per week.

The class is offered through the community education program of high school District 128.

Online registration opens January 4, 2016, at (Look for the course under Adults/Special Interest). The cost of the course is $119, including materials. Instructors, who are members of the North Shore Radio Club, donate their services.

Please contact Derick Bonewitz AB9PR at or 224.456.2540 for further information.

If you wish to send this information to others, a pdf of the flyer can be downloaded here or by clicking on the flyer image above.

Ken Miller KW9I SK

Kenneth C. “Ken” Miller, 88, of Zion, IL, went to be with his Lord on Saturday, January 16, 2016, at Vista Medical Center East in Waukegan, IL.

Ken was born on November 21, 1927, in Zion to Carl Merton Miller and Ruth Marie Kratz Miller and lived in Zion most of his life. He graduated from Zion-Benton Township High School in 1946. He was a Sergeant in the Army during the World War II era and a Navy Photographer third class during the Korean War era. Ken married Cynthia Anne Koetz at Barber’s Point Naval Air Station on Oahu, Hawaii, September 18, 1951. He graduated from the University of Wyoming in 1954 as a Civil Engineer. Ken was a member of Christ Community Church in Zion where sang in the Choir, acted in the Passion Play and was active in the Spanish Ministry of the church. He was an Illinois Registered Professional Engineer and Registered Land Surveyor and retired in 1986 from the Lake County Department of Transportation as Engineer of Construction and Surveys. After retirement he began a 10 year around the world sailing odyssey with his wife Anne in their 35 foot sloop, “Resolute”. Ken had many hobbies including photography, hunting with the bow and arrow, flying, (both airplanes, sail planes, and models). He also loved sailing, amateur radio, and golf. Ken belonged to the Zion American Legion, Bong Eagles Free Flight Model Airplane Club, North Shore Radio Club, and the Waukegan Sail and Power Squadron. He also taught English as a Second Language. He was a strong supporter of Zion-Benton High School athletics.

Survivors include his wife of 64 years, Cynthia Anne; daughters, Rebecca (Peter) Wright of Beach Park, IL, Jennifer (Keith) Fitzgibbons of Zion, IL, Katherine Mostert of Salt Lake City, Utah, and Suzanne (Alex) Waite of Elmhurst, IL; grandchildren, Amy, Kevin, Beth, Lisa, Jennifer, Leanne, Christopher, Nicole, Lauren, Ian, Elise, Andrew, David, Ted, and Molly; five great-grandchildren; numerous nieces and nephews and other family.

Ken was preceded in death by his parents; grandson, Nicholas Mostert; and brother, Leroy Miller.

A Memorial Service was held on Saturday, January 23, 2016, at 11:00 a.m. at Christ Community Church, 2500 Dowie Memorial Drive, Zion, with Pastor Ken Langley, officiating. Memorial donations are suggested to the Zion Faith Homes or the Camp Zion Ministry of Christ Community Church.

Amateur Radio - A 21st Century Hobby

An excellent introduction to ham radio has been developed by the RSGB and is available on YouTube here. We encourage you to share the link.

Second Technician Class Produces 3 New Hams

November 18 concluded our second Technician license class and resulted in three freshly-licensed hams. Together with last semester’s students, we have now seen nine new hams get their first license.

The classes were started last January through District 128 Community Education at Vernon Hills High School. The class just ended was offered through New Trier Extension, the community education program of New Trier High School in Northfield. We have had enthusiastic support from both of these community education programs.

We will start up again on January 28, 2016, at Vernon Hills High School. Our plan is to alternate semesters between Vernon Hills and New Trier.

Please help spread the word about our class and have anyone who is interested contact Derick AB9PR. The class is open to students of all ages, and we especially encourage parents, relatives or older siblings to accompany and support younger students.

Tour de Cure Recognizes NSRC Volunteers

The 2015 American Diabetes Association Tour de Cure bicycle ride was an unparalleled success! Over 1400 riders raised over $700,000 for diabetes research, education and services. It was due in no small part to the work of the amateur radio operators that comprised the majority of the Communications and Safety team, including several North Shore Radio Club members.

For many years now, the NSRC has not only encouraged it’s members to participate, but has provided the Tour with equipment and technical expertise to help accomplish their mission- to bring back every one of the riders that go out…back safely.

 NSRC 2015 Field Day

Field Day 2015 was a great success - many new faces, lots of young folks trying out ham radio in the GOTA tent, and many dedicated operators filling the chairs throughout the 24 hours. Weather was the best in years, and while propagation was not the best, at least on Saturday - it picked up and we managed to eke out a small gain over 2014, for a new NSRC high score. We finished #20 overall — #3 in the 3A category — and #1 in Illinois!

Thanks to all for your help and participation!

Plus - two hams upgraded at the VE session held on Saturday - thanks Mike W9MJD.

NSRC at Dayton 2014

“Hot in Cleveland”…”It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”…But Dayton in May? Not so much…
Didn’t stop intrepid NSRC members, though, who are used to having parkas at hand even when the calendar says “Spring”.
(Click on photo to enlarge.)

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 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!

NSRC Winlink

We have an 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.