AB1OC: “Helping HAMs and Young People to Develop New Skills and Get On The Air” at Waltham ARA Meeting Online, March 30, 2022

Waltham ARA logoPlease join the Waltham Amateur Radio Association  at 7 PM on March 30, 2022 when Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC, will present “Helping Hams and Young People to Develop New Skills and Get On The Air.” 

[Contact Waltham Amateur Radio Association President Ron Senykoff, KG1T, at <rsenykoff@gmail.com> for video conference details.]

New FCC Application Fee Will Not Apply To Amateur Radio License Upgrades

FCC logoFrom ARRL News:
 
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) staff has clarified in response to an ARRL request that the new $35 application fee will not apply to most license modifications, including those to upgrade an Amateur Radio Licensee’s operator class and changes to club station trustees. The FCC staff explained that the new fees will apply only to applications for a new license, renewal, rule waiver, or a new vanity call sign. As previously announced, the new fees take effect on April 19, 2022.
 
“We are pleased that the FCC will not charge licensees the FCC application fee for license upgrade applications,” said ARRL Volunteer Examiner Coordinator (VEC) Manager Maria Somma, AB1FM. “While applicants for a new license will need to pay the $35 FCC application fee, there will be no FCC charge for future upgrades and administrative updates such as a change of mailing or email address. Most current licensees therefore will not be charged the new FCC application fee until they renew their license or apply for a new vanity call sign.”
 
ARRL previously reported that the new $35 application fee for Amateur Radio licenses will become effective on April 19, 2022. Further information and instructions about the FCC Application Fee are available from the ARRL VEC.

KJ6VU: “Building Out a Ham Radio Trailer” at New England Sci-Tech ARS Hybrid Meeting, March 29, 2022

New England Sci Tech logoThe New England Sci-Tech Amateur Radio Society (NEST) will meet on-line and in-person on March 29, 2022 at 7 PM and feature “Building Out a Ham Radio Trailer” by George Zafiropoulos, KJ6VU. 
 
In this presentation, George will describe the process of designing and building out a radio trailer for field operating events.  Topics covered will include construction, power, radios, antennas, and accessories.
Bio: George has been a ham since 1972. He has a wide variety of radio interests including home brewing, QRP, and repeater building. His current station is a Flex 6400, an Elecraft K3, and a modest 6 band vertical (6BTV) and several QRP rigs. His favorite mode is HF CW and he can be found on DMR talk group 31075. George is the designer of the Sierra Radio Systems repeater control systems and the PackTenna line of portable antennas.  George is also the co-host of the Ham Radio Workbench podcast. You can listen to over 150 episodes of the show on any podcast player or directly from website https://www.hamradioworkbench.com  Additionally, George was honored to be interviewed by Eric Guth, 4Z1UG, on Eric’s QSO Today Amateur Radio Podcast. You can hear that interview  at https://www.qsotoday.com/podcasts/kj6vu 
 
(Face masks are now OPTIONAL for vaccinated visitors.)
 
3:00-7:00 – Radio room open; GET CHECKED OUT for the radio room.
 
6:00-7:00 – Mini-class: How to become a Volunteer Examiner (VE). Register HERE.
 
7:00 pm: “Building Out a Ham Radio Trailer” by George Zafiropoulos, KJ6VU.
 
8:00 pm: RADIO SHOP TALK – Each Tuesday after the regular meeting, join us for Technical Topics and Ham Radio Shop Talk. Hang out and ask any technical questions for discussion.
 
For Zoom conference information, email Bob Phinney, K5TEC, at bobphinney -at- nescitech -dot- org or call 508-720-4179.

Eastern Massachusetts Hospital Net – Saturday April 2nd, 2022 at 1000 AM EDT

John O’Neill-K1JRO, South Shore Amateur Radio Group writes:

Good evening,

This coming Saturday the South Shore Health Amateur Radio Group will hold an Eastern MA Hospital Net commencing at 10AM. We realize that the regular locations for some groups are still unavailable due to ongoing COVID restrictions.

We encourage those effected to use their home or mobile stations to check into the net.

We will use the following repeaters and systems in the order listed.

1. Plymouth Repeater 146.685 tone 131.8
2. W.Bridgewater Repeater 146.775 dcs 244
3. DMR – EMHN Talkgroup 8851 Time Slot 1 on select NEDECN repeaters: NEDECN – Boston, Hingham, Bourne, Dennis, and Martha’s Vineyard repeaters
(The MV repeater is currently disconnected from the network).
4. Falmouth Repeater 147.375 tone 110.9 Hz
5. Simplex Test on 147.420

NET Protocol: Please wait for Net Control to ask for Check-ins. When asked to check in please use the standard net check-in procedure which is: Here is.., un-key, wait 3 seconds to check for doubling, then give your or your facilities call sign, your first name, and your facility’s name.

We extend an invitation to any health care facility or EOC of any city or town that is served by one of the participating hospitals to join the Net. We also extend an invitation to any RACES or ARES member to check in during the NET.

We are always looking for groups or organizations to try their hand at Net Control duties. If you are interested in trying your hand at Net Control please let us know. We can be reached by sending an email to ssharg@outlook.com or replying to this message. The goal is to rotate Net Control practice and the experience among as many individuals and groups as possible.

We thank the repeater trustees for their generosity in allowing us to conduct these monthly nets and the use of their systems in an actual event.

We hope to hear you Saturday.

John O’ and the SSH group
K1JRO – W1SSH

K1MJC Fox is On the Loose in Waltham, March 27, 2022

Mike Cormier, K1MJC, writes on the Waltham ARA list and NEMassFoxHunters list at 2:43 PM on March 26, 2022:

Yes, the K1MJC Fox is out first time for 2022!

I checked the weather, supposed to rain Saturday afternoon, but Sunday is supposed to be nice and decided to put it out on a Lark, perhaps Sunday maybe a bit chilly in the 50s.

The fox is in “Storer Conservation area” within the City limits of Waltham, MA.

I’ve decided to try out the “Delayed Start” feature, and set it to begin transmitting 12 hours later, so it should start transmitting or around 2 am and should be active all day Sunday. I also water-proofed it so a little rain this evening should not hurt it.

As usual, it will be retrieved before sundown Sunday.

There is no logbook with it so you could just post to the IO group if found.

The map on this page would prove useful!

https://walthamlandtrust.org/trail-guides/

NOTE: Perhaps in the near future, Eliot and I will put out tandem foxes, and the proposed location tentatively would be the “Greenough Conservation Land” in Carlisle MA.

Happy hunting!

Mike C. K1MJC 73

[Oops… forgot to mention, the fox is transmitting on 146.565. -Mike]

New Amateur Radio License Applications Fee To Become Effective April 19, 2022

FCC logoFrom ARRL Web:

A Public Notice released by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on March 23, 2022, in MD Docket No. 20-270, announced that new application fees for Wireless Telecommunications Bureau applications will become effective on April 19, 2022. The new fees, mandated by Congress, apply to applications for Amateur Radio licenses including those associated with filing Form 605, the Amateur Operator/Primary Station Licensee Application.

Effective April 19, 2022, a $35 fee will apply to applications for a new Amateur Radio license, modification (upgrade and sequential call sign change), renewal, and vanity call signs.

Anticipating the implementation of the fee in 2022, the ARRL Board of Directors, at its July 2021 meeting, approved the “ARRL Youth Licensing Grant Program.” Under the program, ARRL will cover a one-time $35 application fee for license candidates younger than 18 years old for tests administered under the auspices of the ARRL Volunteer Examiner Coordinator (ARRL VEC). Qualified candidates also would pay a reduced exam session fee of $5 to the ARRL VEC. ARRL is finalizing details for administering the program.

ARRL had filed comments in opposition to imposing a fee on Amateur Radio license applications. The FCC initially proposed a higher, $50 fee. In a Report and Order (R&O), released on December 29, 2020, the amount was reduced — the FCC agreeing with ARRL and other commenters that its proposed $50 fee for certain amateur radio applications was “too high to account for the minimal staff involvement in these applications.”

ARRL Volunteer Examiner Coordinator (ARRL VEC) Manager Maria Somma, AB1FM, explained that all fees are per application. “There will be no fee for administrative updates, such as a change of mailing or email address. The fees will be the responsibility of the applicant regardless of filing method and must be paid within 10 calendar days of FCC’s receipt of the application. For applications filed by a VEC, the period does not begin until the application is received by the Commission, a ULS file number assigned, and an email sent by the FCC directly to the applicant.”

VECs and Volunteer Examiner (VE) teams will not collect the $35 fee at license exam sessions. New and upgrade candidates at an exam session will continue to pay the $15 exam session fee to the ARRL VE team as usual, and pay the new, $35 application fee directly to the FCC by using the CORES FRN Registration system (CORES – Login).

When the FCC receives the examination information from the VEC, it will email a link with payment instructions to each successful candidate who then will have 10 calendar days from the date of the email to pay. After the fee is paid and the FCC has processed an application, examinees will receive a second email from the FCC with a link to their official license or explanation of other action. The link will be good for 30 days.

Somma also explained that applications that are processed and dismissed will not be entitled to a refund. This includes vanity call sign requests where the applicant does not receive the requested call sign. “The FCC staff has suggested that applicants for vanity call signs should first ensure the call signs requested are available and eligible for their operator class and area, and then request as many call signs as the form allows to maximize their chances of receiving a call sign.”

Further information and instructions about the FCC Application Fee are available from the ARRL VEC at www.arrl.org/fcc-application-fee. Details for the ARRL Youth Licensing Grant Program will be similarly posted there, when available.

K1UI: “What Can We Do About Noise Interference?” at the Billerica ARS Online Meeting, April 6, 2022

Billerica ARS logoTom Walsh, K1TW, writes on the BARS mailing list:

Next BARS Meeting: April 6, 7PM on Zoom

Speaker: Rob Leiden, K1UI
Assistant NE Division Director

Topic:  What can we do about Noise interference?  Help is coming.

One of the biggest problems faced by amateur radio in this era of new technologies is the growth of noise that interferes with nearly every aspect of our hobby.  Solar panels, LED (including pot farm grow lights) power supplies, dimmer switches, computers and many other devices generate interference as do power line failures, cable TV leakage and other service malfunctions.

The New England Division is creating RFI teams, trained and equipped to help hams find and fix noise problems. Teams are forming in all six New England states.   One has started up in the Eastern MA section and our goal is to have at least one in every section.  Rob will be describing how these teams should be able to assist our members if you experience RF noise problems at your station. 

Those who have the technical background and interest to lead or join your section’s team, should contact their ARRL section manager. The section managers will work with division Leadership to establish RFI teams throughout New England.

Rob Leiden, K1UI is both an ARRL Assistant Division Director for New England and an ARRL Assistant Section Manager for Eastern Massachusetts. 

[For Zoom conference details, email Bruce Anderson, W1LUS, at w1lus -at- hotmail -dot- com.]

Additional Operators Sought for K2H Massachusetts 13 Colonies Special Event Operation, July 1-7, 2022

Larry Krainson, W1AST, writes:

Each year from July 1 through July 7 the 13 Colonies special event stations are on the air. The goal is to work all 13 of the colony stations plus the extra bonus stations. This is a fun event that hams of Massachusetts are part of. 

The call for Massachusetts is K2H. Team K2H is looking for a few additional ops to activate K2H during the 7 days of the 13 Colonies special event station.

If you have ever wanted to be on the receiving end of a DX pileup, this is a fun way to do something very similar.

Last Year the Team K2H ops worked 15,265 stations. We are aiming to beat that this year due to much better band conditions.

Would you like to be a part of Team K2H?

We’re looking for hams that can commit to operating at least 5 of the 7 days and work at least 500 contacts, which is very easy to do.

You can operate SSB, CW, Digital or Satellite. 

All logging must be on a computer program that can export an ADIF file format.

If you would like to join the team or learn more, please contact: Larry, W1AST, at:

W1AST@arrl.net

The last day to sign up is June 9th.

Larry, W1AST

  • ARRL WMA ACC
  • HCRA President
  • Visit my Ham Radio club website at: www.HCRA.org
  • Team K2H – 13 Colonies Massachusetts State Manager
  • Project Big E 2022 Organizer

Algonquin ARC Tech Night Schedule, March-June 2022

AARC logoThe Algonquin Amateur Radio Club has announced the schedule for its upcoming Tech Night sessions via Zoom, and in the training room of the Marlborough Central Fire Station building at 215 Maple Street in Marlborough:

 

Date Location Item
Thursday, March 24, 2022 Zoom Tech Night:  Lantern Battery Challenge
Thursday, March 31, 2022 Zoom Free Night: Hop on and discuss anything.
Thursday, April 28, 2022 Fire Dept HQ Training Room Tech NIght:  IN PERSON ANTENNA BUILDING
Thursday, May 26, 2022 TBD Tech Night:  TBD
Thursday, June 23, 2022 TBD Tech NIght:  TBD – maybe moved to field day weekend at the field day
Thursday, June 30, 2022 TBD Tech NIght:  FREE Night>Field Day wrap up
     
  Field Day  AARC Monthly Meeting
  EOC Meeting Tech Night
[updated 3/21/2022]

Call For Presenters: 2022 HamXposition, August 26-28

HamXposition logoPhil Temples, K9HI, writes:

Don’t just attend the 2022 Northeast HamXposition—BE A PART OF IT! The HamXposition Committee seeks fresh and exciting presentations for this year’s joint ARRL New England/Hudson Division Convention on August 26, 27 & 28, 2022. We’re looking for talks of both a technical and non-technical nature. As a HamXposition presenter, you will have the opportunity to share your subject and knowledge with amateur radio operators from around New England, New York, the surrounding states, and Canada.

In addition to talks and forums throughout the day on Saturday, we will feature Saturday evening entertainment, workshops on Friday, and a half-day Sunday program.

If you represent a regional club or organization (e.g., YCCC, NEQRP, WRONE, MARS, etc.) we can help facilitate open forums or closed meetings by providing you a meeting space.

Non-profit groups who wish to set up information tables should get your requests in early. While the tables are offered without charge, we ask for some volunteer time in return to assist us with ticket sales and other logistics during the convention.

To register as a speaker or presenter, please go to https://hamxposition.org/speaker.html or email k9hi@hamxposition.org if you have additional questions.

We look forward to seeing you at the Convention.

73,

Phil Temples, K9HI
Program Chair
Northeast HamXposition
k9hi@hamxposition.org

Army MARS to Reach Out to Amateur Stations For Reception Reports

Tom Kinahan-N1CPE, US Army Military Auxiliary Radio System, writes:

ARMY MARS to reach out to Amateur Stations for Reception Reports

Due to current events, the BBC has resumed shortwave broadcasts into Ukraine and Russia. In order to improve Amateur to MARS communications, MARS stations will be requesting to see if amateur stations can provide a reception report for these BBC transmissions. The BBC broadcasts are :

Frequency English Broadcast
15730 kHz 1300-1500Z
5875 kHz 2000-2200Z

The request is to see if you can hear any of these daily broadcasts, and get your report to a MARS station near you. MARS stations for their part will be reaching out on normal amateur frequencies, using their amateur callsigns. You will be asked for your callsign a signal report, time and frequency of the report, and your city and state.

The signal report can take the form of: Good Readable, Readable, Poor, Unreadable. If you listened, but didn’t hear anything, we want to know that with an Unreadable report.

The end result will be for stations to learn if their stations can receive these international broadcasts, to indicate a possible need for station improvement.

The exercise will last through March 25, but if you have gathered some reports, please don’t lose them, and send them after that time, to me by email, if you were unable to identify a local ARMY MARS station.

Let’s have some fun with this! Thanks for your support.

Tom Kinahan
US Army Military Auxiliary Radio System
Region One Director
aaa1rd@usamars.us

K1KI: “New England QSO Party Yesterday and Today” at Framingham ARA Meeting, April 7, 2022

Framingham ARA logoDirector Emeritus Tom Frenaye, K1KI, will present at the Framingham Amateur Radio Association (FARA) meeting at 7:30 PM on “New England QSO Party Today and Yesterday.”

He will also talk about “Come on in, the water is warm” and “Improving your HF operating skills.”

Tom ran the ARRL Contest Department for 4 years from 1977-81. He served on ARRL and ARRL Foundation boards from 1985-2018. Tom started the New England QSO Party in 2002, with the help of Bob, W1RH. K1KI was volunteer and site location coordinator for the World Radiosport Team Championships held in the Boston area in 2014. He is a former New England Division Director and past president of the Yankee Clipper Contest Club.

FARA meets the first Thursday of the month (except in July and August) at 7:30 pm .  All area hams and those not yet licensed but interested in amateur radio are welcome to attend.

Members will receive a zoom invitation.  Non-members may request an invitation by sending an email to John president@w1fy.org.

NE1D: “Hunting & Activation of Parks On The Air” at Nashoba Valley ARC Hybrid Meeting, March 17, 2022

Nashoba Valley ARC logoBruce Blain, K1BG, writes:

The Nashoba Valley Amateur Radio Club’s March meeting is Thursday, March 17th at 7:30 PM at the Pepperell Community Center (in Pepperell). Doors will open at 7:10 PM.

We will also “simulcast” this meeting via Zoom (details are below), giving people who live outside the local area or who have concerns about meeting in person an opportunity to participate. Masks will be available for those who meet in person.

This month’s meeting will feature Dimitris Paliyannis, NE1D.  Dimitris will speak on “Hunting and Activation of Parks on the Air.” My understanding is that Dimitris will explain the program and talk about participating from the point of view of calling station.

Need directions? Click here and put your own address in box “A”.

Thanks and 73. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

Bruce, K1BG

978-772-2773 or bruce.blain@charter.net

PS. Thanks to the Pepperell Community Center for the use of the building, and thanks to Jim Hein, N8VIM, and his employer, Medtronics, for the use of the Zoom account.

 

W1MJ Fox Will Be Deployed in Belmont, March 20, 2022

Eliot Mayer, W1MJ, writes on the NEMassFoxHunters list:

This Sunday, March 20, we are expecting partly sunny weather with a high near 53F in Belmont, MA.  I will deploy the W1MJ 5-watt fox in the Rock Meadow Conservation Area in Belmont from 9:30 AM until 5:30 PM.  The fox will transmit frequently on 147.54 MHz.  Information about this fox is available at http://w1mj.com/fox

The Rock Meadow parking lot is at 248 Mill St, Belmont, MA.  This is approximately 30 minutes from Westford per Google Maps.  If the lot is full, parallel parking on Mill Street is allowed.  Due to the rain expected on Saturday, please come prepared for mud in some parts of the meadow.

Per our online meeting over the winter, I will do another deployment at some point at Greenough Land in Carlisle, which closer to Westford.

73 DE W1MJ

CAARA Emergency Communications Group Hosting a Disaster Go Bags Presentation – Tuesday 4/5/22 at 7 PM at the CAARA Clubhouse

KB1PGH-Dean Burgess, Cape Ann ARES Emergency Coordinator, writes:

We will be hosting a meeting of the Cape Ann Amateur Radio Association (CARA) Emergency Communications group on Tuesday April 5th, 2022 at 7 PM at the CAARA Clubhouse on 6 Stanwood Street in Gloucester Mass. We’ll be discussing how to create disaster go bags. Everyone is invited to bring their own disaster go kits down and to show them off as well.

73,Dean-KB1PGH
Cape Ann ARRL/ARES Emergency Coordinator

W6WN: “Phones, Fires, and Failures – the need for more resilient disaster communications systems” at Sci-Tech ARS Meeting, March 15, 2022

New England Sci Tech logoThe New England Sci-Tech Amateur Radio Society (STARS) will meet on-line and in-person on February 8, 2022 at 7 PM and feature  Alan Thompson, W6WN, presenting on “Phones, Fires, and Failures – the need for more resilient disaster communications systems.”
 
Description: This presentation is about the 2018 Camp Fire, with an emphasis on the colossal communications service failures that put people’s lives at risk and why these same failures will likely happen again. According to the presenter, we must find more resilient solutions to help ensure our communities get timely, life-saving information about fast-moving disasters like the Camp Fire.  This conclusion is especially the case in light of our present-day over-reliance on cell phones and the Internet – technologies which, in turn, depend on a trillion dollars of highly vulnerable infrastructure not failing. 
 
Biography: – Alan Thompson, W6WN, grew up and still lives in Placerville California. He was first licensed at the age of 11 and was the second youngest amateur radio operator in the U.S. at that time. He recently re-entered the amateur radio service in 2017 after building a career as a commercial satellite Internet Field Engineer. His clients include the Federal Aviation Administration, T-Mobile, the Department of Health Services, Facebook, Intelsat, Bank of America and Merrill Lynch. In 2018, Alan was part of a Disaster Recovery Team that installed several emergency satellite Internet backup systems to help restore cell-phone service shortly after the Camp Fire destroyed the communities of Paradise and Magalia, California. What he saw there and later learned about the colossal communications failures that occurred during the fire turned Alan into an “Accidental Evangelist” for fire safety and the need for alternative communications systems in the event of disasters. Alan is currently serving as the Public Information Officer for the El Dorado County Amateur Radio Club (EDCARC.net), and is the Chief Advocate for the Club’s non-Ham, Neighborhood Radio Watch program (edcarc.net/neighborhood-radio-watch).  
 
3:00-6:00 – Radio room open; GET CHECKED OUT for the radio room.
 
For Zoom conference information, email Bob Phinney, K5TEC, at bobphinney -at- nescitech -dot- org or call 508-720-4179.