W1UE: “HQ9X-Building a Station in Paradise” at Algonquin ARC, May 14, 2019

AARC logoDennis Egan, W1UE, will present, “HQ9X: Building a Station in Paradise” at the monthly meeting of the Algonquin ARA on May 14 at 7:30 PM. Dennis operated from Roatan Island, situated off the coast of Honduras, during the recent ARRL DX Contest on February 16-17, 2019.

The Algonquin ARC meets  in the library of the 1st Lt. Charles W. Whitcomb Middle School, 25 Union Ave, Marlboro (enter through door #1 at rear of building).

Sci-Tech ARS at Science on the Street, Framingham State College

Rishi Bhagat, KC1BKX, writes:

On Saturday, April 27, 2019, Sci-Tech Amateur Radio Society (STARS) and its host New England Sci-Tech joined the “Science on State Street” event on the campus of Framingham State University (FSU).

STARS set up a large cube tent with an IC-7610, large display monitor, and a buddy pole for people to learn about ham radio. The radio was staffed by Rusty, K1FVK, and Bruce, N9JBT, while outside the tent Marcel, AC1DO, Janet, KC1IKP, and Bob, K5TEC, provided related activities and information. 

For more information about Science on the Street, visit http://christa.org/science-festival/ .

Hurricane Awareness Tour, P3 Hurricane Plane at Quonset State Airport, North Kingstown, RI, May 6, 2019

From wx1box.org:

The National Weather Service Boston/Norton Massachusetts forecast office in coordination with the National Hurricane Center will be hosting the P3 Hurricane Hunter Aircraft and the C-130 Aircraft, part of the NOAA/National Hurricane Center Hurricane Awareness Tour, on Monday May 6th 2019 at the Quonset State Airport in North Kingstown RI. Public tours will be open from 200-500 PM. School, Media and VIP tours and presentations will occur between 915 AM-200 PM. This is similar to what was done in 2007 at Quonset State Airport in Rhode Island and 2011 at Otis Air Force Base in Falmouth, Massachusetts and this year’s event marks the first time in 8 years having the Hurricane Awareness Tour in Southern New England. 

[Full story]

Armed Forces Cross-Band Test, May 11, 2019

Tom Kinahan, N1CPE, writes on the Wellesley ARS mailing list:

May 11 is the Armed Forces Day Cross-band Test, where Amateur stations  listen on military HF frequencies, and use the split function of their HF radio to talk with these stations that are listening in the Amateur bands where we can talk.

I do recommend everyone that can to try this, to show that you can do it.

If you complete a contact, you can get a QSL card from the station, if you follow the directions in the link below.

Frequencies and times for the various stations are listed.


Amateur Radio Support for Hudson-Marlborough Hazardous Waste Day, April 27, 2019

Algonquin ARC logoEric Williams, KV1J, writes on the Algonquin ARC mailing list:

Please join us as we support the biannual joint Hudson-Marlborough Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day on April 27th.  Several have already signed up and we should have a good turnout.

Our support is a combined effort by the Algonquin Amateur Radio Club and the Marlborough Emergency Management Team.  Using our radio communications skills, we manage the traffic flow and validate residency for the approximately 400 cars that come to the event.  We use the Emergency Management’s UHF radios.  If you have them, please bring your UHF portable radio since we will use the club repeater output frequency as a backup.

Please also bring your EMA vest or EMA yellow jacket if you have them.  I will bring vests for those that do not have one.

We setup at 8 AM and the event runs from 9 AM to 1 PM.  The event is next to the Marlborough Resident Drop-Off Facility, located at 860 Boston Post Road East in Marlborough, behind the Half Way Café near Home Depot.

Event Flyer from the Marlborough City web:  https://www.marlborough-ma.gov/sites/marlboroughma/files/uploads/household_hazardous_waste_flyer_s2019.pdf 

KB1TLR: Go-Kits, Falmouth ARA Meeting, April 25, 2019

Falmouth Amateur Radio AssociationBrent Putnam, W1NCH, writes on the Falmouth ARA Facebook page:

The April meeting of the Falmouth Amateur Radio Association will be held on Thursday, April 25, at 7:00PM in the Falmouth Emergency Operations Center (EOC).

This month, our own Vice President, Barry, KB1TLR, will be doing a presentation about go-kits.

And we have an announcement about a Go-Kit Contest!

The EOC (also known as the training room) is located at the back of the second floor of the Falmouth Fire and Rescue Department (FFRD) headquarters at 399 Main Street in Falmouth. The public entrance to the building and parking lot are off of King Street.

Several members will be having dinner before the meeting at Liam Maguire’s (273 Main Street, across from the library) at 5:30pm. It’s 900 Thursday, so call in on the FARA 900 repeater on 927.850 -25.7875, PL 88.5. If you don’t have 900, we’ll also be listening on the FARA K1RK repeater, 146.655-, PL 88.5.

All are welcome to join us!

WO1VES: “Digital Voice Hotspots for Ham Radio” at Billerica ARS Meeting, May 1, 2019

Andy Wallace, KA1GTT, writes on the Billerica Amateur Radio Society mailing list:

Everyone, I am excited to announce that Brian Gudzevich, WO1VES, will be our speaker for May.  Brian runs the “Wolf Pack Repeater System” in Stoneham and hosts the “Nut Net” on the Danvers repeater (145.47) at 11:15PM every day.

Brian explains his topic: “I will be presenting an introduction to digital voice hotspots for ham radio.  These hotspots are designed to link digital radios to reflectors over the Internet, and allow you to talk to people anywhere in the world without the use of a Repeater.  They will work with almost any make, model and digital mode.  I will also be giving a run down of the various digital modes, reflectors, and terminology.  Followed by a live demo.  I hope to give people a full understanding of how these hotspots work.”

That says it much better than I could. If, like me, you only use an FM rig to talk on repeaters this could be really eye opening and I am guessing it will also be a way to “work DX” with your HT or computer! I hope the turnout will be excellent.

In addition, the Near-Fest ham flea (May 3 and 4) and ARRL Field Day (June 22-23) are approaching fast and after Brian speaks we will have Club discussion about those events.

Andy, KA1GTT

President, Billerica Amateur Radio Society


Meetings begin promptly at 7:00 PM, first Wednesday of the month.

Our meeting location in Chelmsford is at:

Chelmsford Bible Church
128 Gorham St. (Route 3A)
Chelmsford, MA 01824

Please park in back and enter by the rear door. A map can be accessed by the “Club Meetings” notice on the right side of the website.

The Billerica ARS encourages members to get on the air! (GOTA). There are many exciting operating events over the coming cold months to enjoy. Let us know what you’re interested in.

Bring a friend (or aspiring ham) and join us!

Note: The weekly BARS Wednesday night net will not meet on this evening because of the club meeting. Members are encouraged to get on Billerica (147.12) on their way to/from the meeting instead.


Faster, More Contest-Friendly FT4 Digital Protocol to Debut in a Week

From ARRL Web:

A new, speedier, more contest-friendly digital mode is just days away in beta version. WSJT-X Developers say serious work on the new FT4 protocol began shortly after the FT8 Roundup held last December 1-2. The goal was a mode that could compete with RTTY contesting in terms of contact rates, while preserving many of the benefits of FT8. [More]

New England Sci-Tech General Class Course, Natick, May 18-19, 2019

New England Sci Tech logoFor junior high and high school students, homeschool students, and adults who already have a Technician level license, this fast-paced, two-day course will get you ready to take the GENERAL license exam. Topics range from the science of radio electronics to the FCC rules governing the radio spectrum.  Some preliminary reading and study is necessary to get the best results from this course. Material will be sent approximately a week before the course.

The GENERAL level course runs Saturday, 9 am – 5 pm and Sunday, 9 am to 1 pm, followed by the FCC General exam at noon, at New England Sci-Tech, 16 Tech Circle, Natick.

Included with course fee: printed handouts, lecture study guide, license fee if tested at our location, a guest pass to the NEAR/STARS Radio Room and radio club meetings for 2 months, and free coffee, tea, or hot chocolate during the course. Advance registration and payment required.

For more information and to register, visit <https://www.nescitech.org/product/weekend-general-class/>. For questions, e-mail bobphinney at nescitech.org or call 508-720-4179.


Marlborough High School Watch, May 24-June 8, 2019

AARC logoAnn Weldon, KA1PON, writes on the Algonquin ARC mailing list:

Volunteers are needed for School Watch. The time is 7-11 PM on many nights: May 24, 25, 26,27, 31 and June 1,2, 7, 8.  Please know this is to support the City [of Marlborough] and Marlborough High School who support  our radio club.  If you volunteer for the first few May dates, K1DIN will be in charge. Thank you for volunteering. Please respond to me at ALWMA2005@yahoo.com with dates you choose. 

KV1J on W1 QSL Bureau, New England Sci-Tech, April 23, 2019

Eric Williams, KV1J, Co-manager of the W1 QSL Bureau, is the featured guest speaker at New England Sci-Tech on April 23, 2019 at 7 PM. Eric will explain how the QSL card sorting works, and encourage attendees to do some actual card sorting.
Prior to the meeting, at 6 PM the club offers training on how to operate the HF station in the radio room (tours for visitors); at 6:30, everyone is encouraged to check into the net on 449.125 (CTCSS 146.2 Hz).  After the meeting and presentation is the Planetarium show and public telescope night, weather permitting.
New England Sci-Tech is located at 16 Tech Circle, Natick MA. Directions

NBEMS Demo at South Shore Hospital

Cape Cod and Islands District Emergency Coordinator Frank O’Laughlin, WQ1O, presented on VHF/UHF Narrow-Band Emergency Message System (“NBEMS”) at an Eastern Massachusetts Hospital Net meeting at the South Shore Hospital in Weymouth on April 6, 2019.

According to O’Laughlin, the meeting was “well attended by many, including Assistant DEC Henry Brown, K1WCC, and Section Emergency Coordinator Rob Macedo, KD1CY. “

Northeastern University Wireless Club Semester Wrap Up

Courtesy NU Wireless Club web site:

First off, thank you to everyone for a great semester!  We hope everyone enjoyed this semester’s events, workshops, and other club activities.  If you have any feedback from the past semester, or want to make recommendations for the next one we would love to hear from you. Feel free to reach out to any officer on slack.

Just some quick Summer notes:

  • Ham nets will continue through June
  • Door codes will last through Summer 1 and Summer 2
  • No events are planned, but still feel free to utilize the club space

ARRL Rolls Back Outgoing QSL Bureau Rates to 2011 Prices

ARRL flagvia ARRL Web:

ARRL is rolling back Outgoing QSL Bureau rates to 2011 levels. Effective May 15, 2019, the new rates will be:

  • $2 for 10 or fewer cards in one envelope.
  • $3 for 11 – 20 cards in one envelope, or
  • 75 cents per ounce for packages with 21 or more cards. For example, a package containing 1.5 pounds of cards — 24 ounces, or about 225 cards — will cost $18.

No transaction service fees.

Any cards received before May 15 will be charged the current rate. There will be no adjustments for cards received before May 15.

More information is on the ARRL website.

New England Sci-Tech Participates in 2019 Cambridge Science Festival

Leaders of New England Sci-Tech (NEST) staffed three exhibit tables this past weekend at the Cambridge Science Festival with “ham radio, meteorites, 3D space, and constellation night light kits.”

“We had 35 children make kits at the fair and more were made at [New England Sci-Tech] last evening when about 30 people came for the first night, ” writes NEST founder Bob Phinney, K5TEC.

New England Sci-Tech is a non-profit STEM+ education center and makerspace dedicated to project-based, hands-on learning for youth and families across theNew England community.

According to the Cambridge Science Festival’s organizers, “the annual 10-day (and night) celebration of science, technology, engineering, arts and math makes science accessible, engaging and fun for everyone through multifaceted, multicultural events.”  

Quannapowitt RA to Feature WO1VES: “Digital Ham Radio and Internet,” April 18, 2019

The Quannapowitt Radio Association will feature Brian Gudzevich, WO1VES, presenting on “Digital Ham Radio and Internet Connections” on April 18 at 7:00 PM. 

QRA meets at the Reading Senior Citizen Center at 49 Pleasant Street in the old fire house. Meetings are held on the third Thursday of each month, September through June. All are invited and holding an Amateur Radio license is not required. 

HF Operations on Marathon Monday

Marc Stern, WA1R, writes:
The Massachusetts HF Net will open sign-on Monday morning at 6 a.m. in standby mode in support of Marathon operations and will remain in this mode until at least 1800 hours local time. Eastern Mass. ARES leadership has asked all amateurs not involved directly to also standby.
This year, like last year, there will likely be rain starting about the time runners gather for the morning’s run. Unlike last year, which was complicated by energy-sapping cold and rain, this year’s rain is supposed to be warm and there is a chance of thunderstorms and lightning that will potentially cause runners problems.
For HF operations, the Weather Service station, WX1BOS, will be on the air and MEMA HQ will be on the air under the call WC1MA. The HF net will operate on its primary frequency, 3.930.
Thanks in advance,
Marc, WA1R