Great Lakes Division

Serving Radio Amateurs in the Michigan, Ohio and Kentucky  Sections

  

Jim Weaver, K8JE

Great Lakes Director

Weaver's Words..

Updated 06/26/2014

V I S I T    F I E L D    D A Y    T H I S    W E E K E N D

-    ARISS to go Quiet this Winter

-    ARRL Hosts Online Practice Exams

-    Scott Yonally, N8SY Returns as Ohio SM

-    Dale's Tales for July

-    FCC Revises Amateur Radio Rules

-    Activities for Young and Wanna-be Hams featured at ARRL National Convention

-    W1AW/p Stations:  How do They Come About?

-    Closing Item for the Day

-    Tentative Travel and Hamfest Schedule

 

+++ ARISS to go Quiet this Winter +++

Charlie Sufana AJ9N of the ARISS program reports there will be no Amateur Radio operations from the International Space Station beginning

10 November through 7 December this year.  The reason for the quiet hours is there will not be a radio amateur on board.  Amateur operations continue until 10 November and will resume after 7 December when a new crew comes on board the station.

 

+++ ARRL Initiates Online Practice Exams +++

"The ARRL has launched a new online resource that allows users to take randomly generated practice exams using questions from the actual examination question pool. ARRL Exam Review for Ham Radio™ is free.

Users do not need to be ARRL members. The only requirement is that users must first set up a site login (this is different and separate from any ARRL website login the user may have).

“'The ARRL’s online Exam Review is designed to help license examination candidates review their progress as they study,' said ARRL Marketing Manager Bob Inderbitzen, NQ1R. 'As you complete a chapter or section of a license manual, you can turn to the online program to review all of the related questions taken directly from the examination question pool. After answering each question — right or wrong — the correct answer is shown, and a page reference to the license manual is displayed for further review.'”

This, of course, is not the only online test examination service available, but it adds still another dimension to the ARRL services available to amateurs and people studying for an Amateur Radio exam.

(From ARRL)

 

+++ Scott Yonally, N8SY Returns as Ohio SM +++

Ohio Section Manager Scott Yonally, N8SY has been elected to a full two-year term as SM.  His election to the office was uncontested; therefore, he is delared elected.

Scott had been appointed effective January 1, 2014 to succeed former Ohio SM Frank Piper, KI8GW who resigned to meet increased work demands.

 Scott has been doing a fine job in managing ARRL operations in the Section.  His new term in office begins October 1.  It will end September 30, 2016.

Congratulations, Scott.

 

+++ Dale's Tales for July +++

Greetings all.

In a couple of weeks, many of us will be converging upon Hartford and Newington for the National Convention of our ARRL.  It is a huge celebration of our 100th anniversary and certainly an event one should not miss.  Visit: http://www.arrl.org/convention-forums-and-presenters

for a listing of the forums and the schedule. These programs are top notch with the experts in the field making the presentations.  Checking various site links from the ARRL home page will allow you to examine the Youth Programs and all of the other convention-related events.  Time is short, you can register on-line, head out and enjoy the National Convention.

The Field Day Safety article on page 70 of June QST is a good reminder to never overlook the importance of safety at our Field Day sites.

Operators and visitors alike need to be kept aware of the urgency of site safety.  Taking a short-cut to save time could be a life-endangering mistake.  I do hope that everyone enjoyed a safe and secure Field Day operation and contacts were at all time high numbers.

 

73, see you on the bands.

 

Dale Williams WA8EFK

Vice Director, Great Lakes Division

wa8efk@arrl.org

 

+++ FCC Revises Amateur Radio Rules +++

 

On June 9, the FCC issued a Report and Order (R&O) that addressed a couple of topics that had been submitted through petitions and tidied a few items that needed correction.  The changes of substance in the R&O relate to giving essentially life-time credit for certain amateur exam elements and permitting some forms of TDMA digital.  I will address only the life-time credits.  The entire R&O can be read at http://transition.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2014/db0609/FCC-14-74A1.pdf.

The licensing changes make it less formidable for someone whose license has expired beyond the grace period for renewal, to become relicensed.

Essentially, holders of expired General, Advanced, and Extra licenses, and of Technician licenses issued before March 21, 1987, can regain their former license status by passing the current Element 2 (Technician) examination.  There is no need to retake the higher-level license elements.

The result of the new rule is that former licensees will be given credit for examination elements beyond element 2 as follows:

- Former Extra Class ops will receive credit for Elements 3 and 4.

- Former General Class and Advanced Class ops will receive credit for Element 3. Old CSCEs cannot be used as proof of credit for any exam element.

 

+++ Activities for Young and Wanna-be Hams featured at ARRL National

Convention +++

The ARRL National Centennial Convention July 17-19 in Hartford, Connecticut, will include a variety of activities aimed at young and prospective hams.  These activities will include two youth forums, a hidden transmitter hunt, a scavenger hunt and the Youth Radio Lab.

Focused on younger and would-be amateurs, he ARRL Discovery Station in the ARRL exhibit area in the Exhibition Hall will appeal to the interests of visitors of all ages.

“'The Discovery Station will have a range of hands-on exhibits to help visitors to understand the basics of radio waves, and projects that young operators can explore in the world of exciting world of Amateur Radio,' said Tommy Gober, N5DUX, who will head up the ARRL Discovery Station team. 'Stop by the Discovery Station to discover the different parts of what makes up a radio wave, try out some of the electronic kits available through the Education & Technology Program (ETP), and get inspired to create something of your own.'

"Gober said the Discovery Station will feature some of the robots developed by ARRL Teachers Institute participants, as well as a CubeSat simulator, and an audio-frequency oscillator with an oscilloscope display and speakers — to help visitors understand the relationship between amplitude and frequency. Visitors will be able to change these relationships by moving their hands over a sensor. 'We’ll also have two different-sized coils to stretch or shrink to demonstrate the relationship of coil size and spacing on inductance,' Gober added.

'Essentially, [we’ll offer] stimulating, hands-on things for visitors to do.'”

"Visitors do not need to be Amateur Radio licensees to attend the convention, but registration is required for all attendees, including youth. Two-day tickets (Friday and Saturday) are free for those who are age 21 or younger. Advance registration is recommended."

For details about youth activities, go to https://www.regonline.com/builder/site/Default.aspx?EventID=1248082#youth

(From ARRL)

 

+++ W1AW/p Stations:  How do They Come About? +++

Amateurs tell me that contacting the W1AW/p stations from each state and US territory, and on each band, is the best part of the year-long ARRL Centennial Party.  On the other side of the coin, I've spoken with many amateurs who have been operators at a W1AW/p station and been told this was one of the greatest experiences they have ever had in Amateur Radio.  In short, the roving W1AW has proven to be a real blast for everyone involved!  But, how are the operators of these portable stations selected?

The first step in identifying W1AW/p operators is for staff at HQ to select an amateur from the state or territory to head one of the operations.  Typically, the person selected has a proven track record of quality operating under Contest or DX pileup conditions.  The reason for this is that each W1AW/p station generally is inundated with calls curing the first several days it is on the air.  Skill in managing hoards of stations calling at the same time is critical to the success of the portable operation.

Once the coordinator for a portable operation has been selected, he or she must determine the best way to fill the time slots the station will need to be on the air. Taken to the extreme, for an operation to be active on eight bands simultaneously, 24 hours a day for 7 days, the coordinator will need to fill 1,344, 1-hour time slots.  To this, add four operating modes (CW, SSB PSK-31, RTTY) whih brings the number of ooperator-time hours to 5,376.  Using an ideal two operators on each hour slot, the total of operator hours jumps to 10,752.  Obviously, all eight of the bands will not be open 24-hours/day, so these extreme numbers will not be needed. Regardless, the number of operators needed to put eight bands using multiple modes on the air for a week is rather great.

Working from the number of operator-hours that are needed to be filled, the coordinator might next determine if the operation needs to be spread throughout the entire state, or if there is a sufficient density of amateurs in one locality to get the job done.  Oh, and one more thing .

. .  How many stations are there that can do the job of giving W1AW/p QSOs out effectively in pileups?  As much as many hams love to operate QRP, I don’t think that using a QRP station with a long-wire antenna would generally be very effective.  Strong stations are probably the best for most modes and situations.

I don't pretend to know the best answer to all the questions a portable coordinator faces.  What I think I know is that a few of the portable operations that have taken place so far this year have used truly awesome, single station sites that boast several operating stations -- top-of-the-line club contest stations.  In most instances; however, operations have been spread throughout much or all of a state to utilize most effectively the resources of operators and equipment that are available to achieve the greatest results.

Merely thinking about this casts a new light on how one might want to answer the question, "Do you want to get a group of guys together to operate W1AW/p for a week?"

Fortunately, the amateurs who have answered this question "yes" have done a great job of coordinating the staffing and operation of their W1AW/p charges.

 

+++ Closing Item for the Day +++

Over the past several years, I have received many questions concerning any action the FCC may take regarding the operating activities of Glenn Baxter, K1MAN.  Of course, I had no more insight into the Commission's thinking than anyone else.  FCC has now spoken.

Mr. Baxter's application to renew his license has been denied.  This denial came as routine action and can be seen at http://wireless2.fcc.gov/UlsApp/ApplicationSearch/applMain.jsp?applID=3052669.

 In addition to the opening screen, there is an attachment that can be read by clicking on the "Attachment" link.

 

+++ Tentative Travel and Hamfest Schedule +++

Jul 10-13 -  Michigan Summer Outing, Hale, MI -- WB8R, MI Staff

Jul 12 - 20/9 RC Tailgate and Hamfest, Austintown, OH

Jul 17-20 - ARRL Centennial National Convention 2014, Hartford, CT -- K8JE, WA8EFK

Jul 20 - Van Wert Hamfest, Van Wert, OH -- Ohio Cabinet

Jul 20 - PSC Meeting, Hartford, CT -- K8JE

Jul 21-22 - ARRL BoD Meeting, Hartford, CT -- K8JE, WA8EFK Jul 26 - 2014 CMARC Outdoor Hamfest, Lansing, MI -- WB8R

Jul 27 - Portage HAMFAIR '14 - Randolph, OH -- WA8EFK, Ohio Cabinet

Aug  2 - UP Hamfest, Delta County ARS, Escanaba MI

Aug  2 - Ohio Section Conference & Columbus Hamfest, Columbus, OH -- QSL Checking - N8SY, Ohio Cabinet

Aug  3 - Seaway Trunk Swap, Port Huron, MI -- QSL Checking

Aug 10 - Central Kentucky ARRL Hamfest, Lawrenceburg, KY -- QSL Checking -- KY4Z

Aug 17 - Warren Hamfest, Cortland, OH -- QSL Checking

Aug 24 - Cuyahoga Falls ARS Tailgate Hamfest -- Stow, OH

Sep  6 - Greater Louisville Hamfest, Shepherdsville, KY -- KY4Z -- QSL Checking

Sep  7 - Findlay Hamfest, Findlay, OH -- WA8EFK, N8SY

Sep 13 - GRAHamfest, Wyoming, MI -- QSL Checking -- WB8R

Sep 13 - Richmond Hamfest, Richmond, KY -- KY4Z

Sep 14 - Adrian Hamfest, Adrian, MI -- WA8EFK, WB8R

Sep 21 - OHKYIN ARS Hamfest, Cincinnati, OH -- QSL Checking

Sep 28 - Cleveland Hamfest & Computer Show, Cleveland, OH -- QSL Checking -- N8SY

Oct  4 - 'Vette City Hamfest, Bowling Green, KY -- QSL Checking -- WA8EFK, KY4Z

Oct  5 - Conneaut ARC Hamfest, Conneaut, OH

Oct 18 - Muskegon Color Tour Hamfest, Muskegon, MI -- WB8R

Oct 19 - Kalamazoo Hamfest, Kalamazoo, MI -- QSL Checking - WB8R

Oct 25 - Hazard KY Hamfest - Hazard, KY -- KY4Z

Oct 26 - USECA Hamfest - Madison Heights, MI -- WB8TKL

Nov  2 - Massillon ARC Hamfest, Massillon, OH -- QSL Checking - N8SY

 

*********************************************************************************

Jim Weaver, K8JE

Director, Great Lakes Division

5065 Bethany Rd.

Mason, OH 45040

Tel. 513-459-1661; e-mail K8JE@arrl.org

 

Dale Williams, WA8EFK

Vice Director, Great Lakes Div.

291 Outer Drive

Dundee, MI 48131

734-529-3232; e-mail wa8efk@arrl.org

 

 

 

 

 

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