Quincy Radio Club New Year’s 2024 Special Special Wooden Nickel Event

The Quincy Radio Club (KW1NZE) will be on the air from Sunday, December 31 19:00 EST (0000 UTC) to Monday January 1 18:59 (2359 UTC). HF (SSB, CW, FT8) Wires-X Quincy Room #63826.

We will be welcoming in the new year from the city of Quincy Massachusetts, home of Dunkin Donuts, John Adams, John Hancock, the first commercial railroad in the US, Howard Johnson’s, surf guitarist Dick Dale, Academy Award actress Ruth Gordon and the location of the largest Flag Day parade in the USA. These are but a few of the extraordinary people, events and institutions that have come from our great city.

All stations that work KW1NZE during this event are encouraged to send a SASE to the above address and receive a highly collectable wooden nickel. Hope to get you in the log!!

Getting Winlink pat, VARA, and ARDOP working on M1/M2/M3 Macs

Hi all,

I’m sure there are other modern Mac owners who would like to join the Winlink network. As part of my work with the West Middlesex ARES group here in Massachusetts, I worked out a pat configuration that is fully functional with ARDOP and VARA HF modems, despite their being Windows-only applications.

I’ve had this working for about 6 months now, and I’ve finally gotten around to writing the instructions necessary for others to try out. They are in a blog post on my web site at:

It’s also the most recent blog post on my ham radio site, wg1v.org.

A caveat: Before folks get too excited, this does involve a piece of payware software called Crossover, which is a commercial version of WINE. It’s available from codeweavers.com and costs $74, but it is available as a 14-day evaluation for you to see if it’s worth paying the money. I suspect that it is now possible to make this work with the open source version of WINE, but 1) I haven’t done that, and 2) I’m happy to pay the Codeweaver folks who make running Windows stuff on Macs easier.

I’ve made this configuration work with both an Icom IC-7100 and a Flexradio 6600, so I’m pretty certain it’s adaptable to most modern radios with a USB audio and CAT interface.

I hope hams using modern Macs find this useful.
Carl, WG1V

Technician Licensing Class Begins January 11, 2024, in Dartmouth

Southeastern MA ARA logoMarcel L. Dumont, W1MLD, writes on the Southeastern MA ARA mailing list:

Tony [Souza], NN1D, will be giving a class for your tech ham license beginning the second week of January on Thursday, January 11, 2024.

The classes will be held at the Dartmouth Police station on Tucker Road just south of Route Six. The classes will be held for four weeks with testing on the fifth week. The classes will be from 7 PM till 9 PM each night except for the first night at 6:30 for registration. The cost will be for the book only at under $15.00. The class is free.

Anyone interested should call Tony at 508-493-0417 ASAP.

FEMA Region 1 Winlink Testing

KI1U-Mike Corey – FEMA Region 1 Emergency Management Specialist in Disaster Communications writes:

Good afternoon,

FEMA Region 1 will begin conducting monthly Winlink tests starting January 2024. The purpose of this test is to exercise the Regional PACE plan, Winlink is part of the “Emergency” category of the plan. We would like to include Amateur Radio and SHARES stations in New England in this test. Here are the details:

Testing Procedure: Each month FEMA Region 1 Disaster Emergency Communications Branch will generate a Winlink message to participating stations. The message will be sent via Winlink through an Amateur Radio or SHARES gateway. The message will contain simple instructions on how to reply – which form to use, information requested, response time, etc. The receiving stations will reply to FEMA Region 1 via Winlink with the requested information within a set timeframe. The date and time of the monthly test will vary.

Participating Stations – Open to Amateur Radio or SHARES stations in New England. Stations must have Winlink capability and a valid Winlink email address. Participating operators should be aware that this test is conducted without announcement, so it is important that Winlink messages are checked regularly.

How to Sign Up – Stations wishing to participate can sign up online at https://forms.gle/sTibzJjZhftHXR4J9

Please feel free to share the above information with those who may be interested in participating. Any questions, let me know.



Mike Corey
Emergency Management Specialist | Disaster Emergency Communications
Response Division | FEMA Region I

N1JDH: “Vertical Antenna Design” at Cape Ann Amateur Radio Association, January 13, 2023

Cape Ann ARA logoBrandon Hockle, NQ1W, writes on the Cape Ann ARA mailing list:

Just a quick note to remind everyone that Paul Krueger [N1JDH] has been kind enough to come back for the second in our lecture series on antennas!

Last time he gave an excellent overview of some of the horizontal antenna systems we commonly work with as hams and a look at computer models of them at various heights. This month we will get to enjoy a similar treatment for vertical antenna design!

Paul has put together a fine presentation with models of some the most common vertical design cases and models of their radiation patterns.

We hope that you can come to the presentation and follow up discussion during the January CAARA members meeting January 13th at noon.

Brandon Hockle NQ1W

KBØYH: “Factors Affecting Small Transmitting Loop Antenna Performance” at Sci-Tech ARS Hybrid Meeting, December 19, 2023

New England Sci Tech logoThe New England Sci-Tech Amateur Radio Society will meet on-line and in-person on December 19, 2023 at 7 PM and feature: “Factors Affecting Small Transmitting Loop Antenna Performance” by Augie “Gus” Hansen, KBØYH.

This presentation is an updated version of one given in the first QSO Today Academy in September 2023. A Small Transmitting Loop Antenna (STL) of diminutive size can perform very well on both transmission and reception if care is taken in the design, material selection, and construction phases. The program STLcalc is used to reveal the performance impacts of main loop conductor material, size, shape, and length, as well as the type and quality of the tuning capacitor. Performance is gauged by efficiency, which is maximized by increasing radiation resistance while reducing loss resistance. In addition, some suggestions are provided on ways to obtain good coupling to the transmission line over a wide tuning range.

Augie “Gus” Hansen, KB0YH, is a semi-retired electrical engineer, computer programmer, author, and technical trainer. Although he has deployed numerous types of antennas for broadcast and ham radio use, he has worked on STL (a.k.a., magnetic loop) antenna design, construction, and operation for three decades, primarily to help those who are prevented from using visible antennas. This latest project, STLcalc, started as a Python language programming exercise. A forced march to produce something useful is a great way to quickly learn a new language!

New England Sci-Tech Hosts Lexington Boy Scout Troop

Lexington BSA troop at New England Sci-Tech for radio merit badge trainingSeventeen boys and girls from the Lexington BSA scouts participated in a three-hour program at New England Sci-Tech in Natick toward their radio merit badge, electronics merit badge, and amateur radio license.

For two groups over two weekends, Jon Lyna, George Lyna, Rusty Moore, K1FVK, and Bob Phinney, K5TEC, led radio and electronics activities. Scout leader John Aldridge created the curriculum which he and Bob plan to make a regular program for scout activities at New England Sci-Tech.

Eastern MA VOTA Competition

Volunteer On The Air logoJon McCombie, N1ILZ, writes on the Eastern MA ARRL Members list:

I hope everyone in the Section has been having a good time with the ARRL Volunteers On The Air (VOTA) program this year, making lots of QSOs and racking up lots of VOTA points!

A reminder about the VOTA competition here in the Eastern MA Section: after the VOTA event concludes, the one Eastern MA ARRL member with the highest VOTA point total (per the VOTA Leaderboard, https://vota.arrl.org/leaderboard.php?state=MA&submit=Filter+by+State) will receive a softcover copy the of the ARRL-100 Antenna Book, compliments of ARRL.

To enter: make sure to upload all your QSOs to LoTW; on or after Jan 10, 2024, I will award the Antenna Book to the EMA-Section ARRL member who has the highest VOTA point total per the VOTA Leaderboard.

There is also an Eastern-MA-Section ARRL-Affiliated club competition. The one EMA ARRL-Affiliated club with the highest combined VOTA point total will receive the 6-volume ARRL-100 Handbook, to do with as they please. A club may raffle the Handbook to a member at a meeting, or donate it to a club or public library, or … the club calls it.

To enter the club competition: make sure your club members have uploaded all contact to LoTW; on or after Jan 10, 2024, send an email to n1ilz@arrl.org and attach a spreadsheet listing the callsigns of club members and their claimed VOTA scores. I will confirm VOTA scores from the VOTA Leaderboard, and the winning club will receive the Handbook.

Questions? Email me at n1ilz@arrl.org.

73 de

ARRL Eastern Massachusetts Section
Section Manager: Jon W McCombie, N1ILZ

Volunteer Registration for 2024 Boston Marathon Now Open

Boston Marathon Communications Committee <contact@hamradioboston.org>

Dec 7, 2023, 11:00 AM

Volunteer registration for the 2024 Boston Marathon opened yesterday. Returning volunteers have received an email from the BAA that included registration instructions. In order to make registration as smooth as possible, we are providing specific instructions for our Amateur Radio Operator (ARO) volunteers.

If you haven’t previously volunteered, or have a friend who would like to volunteer, please go directly to the Volunteer Registration page and follow the instructions for new volunteers.

Step by Step Sign Up Guide:

A few notes for volunteers:
Almost all amateur radio positions are single person assignments. We are not able to group people on a single assignment, but we will try to accommodate which segment you are assigned to in order to allow for similar start/end times.

Don’t delay! Volunteer registration closes on Friday, February 2 at 5:00 PM EST. It would help our planning processes if you could complete your registration by Friday, January 26.

Help us get the word out by forwarding this email to your club and other amateur radio operators who might wish to volunteer. Most volunteers first learn about the event through word of mouth. If you know new licensees who might like to join us, please make sure to let them know about it. Even just a quick mention at your club meeting can be a big help!

If you have any questions about the upcoming volunteer registration period, or the 2024 Marathon generally, please get in touch anytime. Volunteering at the Marathon is a big job and we appreciate the time and effort everyone puts into it. We’re happy to do what we can to make your work fun, comfortable, and effective.

We look forward to seeing everyone again soon.

Thank you, and 73,

Boston Marathon Communications Committee

Please make sure to whitelist volunteer@baa.org and contact@HamRadioBoston.org to make sure you receive BAA and ARO committee communications.
NOTE: You must be at least 18 years old to volunteer for the Boston Marathon.

Harvard Wireless Club Honored With 50-Year ARRL Affiliation Plaque

photo l-r: Phil Temples, K9HI; Cameron Lu, KC1LZI; Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC
L-R: Phil Temples, K9HI; Cameron Lu, KC1LZI; Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC. Photo courtesy Anita Kemmerer, AB1QB.

ARRL New England Division Director Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC, and Vice Director Phil Temples, K9HI, recently visited the W1AF club shack on the Harvard University campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and awarded a 50-year ARRL affiliation plaque to HWC Vice President Cameron Lu, KC1LZI. The ARRL Board of Directors recognized the club in the form of an official motion at its July, 2023 meeting in Windsor, Connecticut. 

The club has a distinguished history, and is one of the oldest radio clubs in the country. It was founded  in 1909 as “The Radio Society of the Institute of Geographic Exploration at Harvard” and changed its name to the Harvard Wireless Club a year later. 


Reminder: December 4th, 2023 MEMA RACES/ACS Communications Test Net

Hello to all,

     I hope the Thanksgiving Holidays were enjoyable for everyone! This email is the typical monthly message to let everyone know that Monday evening, December 4th, 2023 is our first non-holiday Monday of the month and, as such, will be the next RACES/ACS/Preparedness Net night. I would like to thank all stations that participated in last month’s Section Emergency Test as well as Skywarn Recognition Day this last weekend.

      As always, I am looking for Net Control stations to staff our sector nets for the evening. This month I am planning to be able to run the Sector 2A net. As always I am looking for NCS operators to lead the Sector 2B (Plymouth County) net. Sector 2D has already arranged for an NCS operator for this month’s net and Sector 2C is a Winlink only net on a monthly basis.

              For any operators interested in performing the duties of Net Control Station (NCS), there are materials available to make the task fairly simple and straight forward. The net pre-amble and role call lists are available at http://wc1mab.org/RACES_R2_Interim_Preamble.pdf and http://wc1mab.org/Month.php with the role call lists on the left column near the bottom. If anyone is worried that they mess up running a net, please remember that, in many cases, a less than perfect net is WAY better than no net at all! At the conclusion of any net, any operator that acted as Net Control Operator should send a note to WC1MAB@gmail.com letting me know who ran the net and who checked in so that the proper numbers can be reported to our served agencies. We cannot always count on our normal net control operators to be available in the event of a large scale emergency, so every RACES operator should be prepared to act as NCO if needed when disaster and emergency strikes!

Winlink Net Instructions From Don Rolph: 

*Winlink Net*

To participate:

– create a check-in form using the Winlink standard checkin form

– send via Winlink after 6 AM EST Mon. December 4th and before midnight EST December 5th (any mode, but include mode in check-in form) to KF1D

   I continue to ask that any operators who have the time, please try to check into sector nets from near-by sections. This will allow our Net Control Operators to practice fielding nets with a strong check-in count and will also serve to help practice with relays or modified sector assignments in the event that a single repeater is out of service. 

   For those operators who serve as Net Control Operators, please try to remember to send me a list of the stations and communities that check into your nets. The numbers are reported to MEMA to show them our level of participation. I am continuing to work on a graphical map based report to show which parts of our section have strong coverage and which areas may need a more targeted recruitment campaign to improve our ability to provide back-up communications in an emergency.

The Region #2 and State Net Schedule for this evening is as follows:

Net Frequency/Offset Time
Sector 2A 147.00 /+0.60  PL 19:30 Local
Sector 2B 145.39/-0.60  PL 67.0 20:00 Local
Sector 2C Winlink Net Check-In 6AM-Midnight Local Time
Sector 2D 146.865/-0.60  PL 103.5 19:30 Local
6-Meter State Net 53.31 / -1.0  PL 71.9  


Note: Net activity on this repeater has been hit and miss. Please report any activity.

19:00 Local
MA RACES HF Net 3930 KHz LSB moving up to 3955 KHz until there is a clear frequency 18:45 Local
MA MEMA NBEMS Net Frequency:  3584.5 MHx, Center Frequency: 1500 Hz, Initial mode: THOR22 19:00 Local

    I appreciate you all answering the call to help our communities remain prepared. Thank you all for helping us keep things on track and prove that we remain a consistent source of communication capability to the Commonwealth. This net provides a monthly reminder to our communities and served agencies that we stand ready with a quiet professionalism prepared to serve as a voice to whomever needs one to get help and resources to where they need to be.

 If you know someone who would benefit from being on this list, please have them contact me at  WC1MAB@gmail.com and I will add them to this distribution. Thank you all!

      If anyone has any questions or comments I can be reached by e-mail or cell phone. Thanks for being a part of our team and I look forward to hearing back on who can participate this month.


Michael Leger (N1YLQ)

MEMA Region #2 RACES Officer

C: 508_995_0203 

Reminder: Eastern Massachusetts ARES Net – Monday December 4th, 2023 at 830 PM on the MMRA Repeater System

Hello to all…

The December Eastern Massachusetts ARES section net will be Monday December 4th, 2023 at 830 PM on the MMRA Repeater system.

For frequencies that will be linked into the ARES Net on the MMRA Network, please see the following link from the MMRA web site detailing the repeaters that will be linked in through Hub 1:
https://mmra.org/repeaters/repeater_linking.html (Click the ARES box to see the repeaters and other systems linked)

We look forward to your participation and remember, we are always looking for Net Controls to run the ARES Net. We will have a number of announcements and items for this month’s net and we will continue the NTS practice message that we started doing in these nets in October 2023. Also, the first ARES Net of 2024 will be Monday January 8th, 2024 due to the New Years holiday falling on the first Monday of the month.

Thanks for your continued support of ARES!

Respectfully Submitted,

Robert Macedo (KD1CY)
ARES SKYWARN Coordinator
Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator
Home Phone #: (508) 994-1875
Home/Data #: (508) 997-4503
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
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Massachusetts RACES Nets – Monday 12/4/23 for HF, Region 2D VHF, NBEMS & Winlink – Times and Details Below

Don Rolph, AB1PH, Walpole area ARES Emergency Coordinator writes:

The MEMA RACES nets are held on the first Monday of the month, unless the first Monday is a holiday, when it is delayed one week, The RACES nets for Dec will be held on Mon Dec 4 at:
The HF net will start at 6:45 PM ET: using the following frequency plan:
We will start at 3930 KHz moving up to 3955 KHz until there is a clear frequency,
Marc Stern WA1R will be net control.

Region 2D VHF net:
7:30 PM ET VHF net on 146.865 MHz PL 103.5 (Sharon Repeater)
We will have a general call up of any RACES, ARES, or other interested stations. If there is time, we will have a simplex test.
Jeff Marden N1JCM will be net control.

HF 80 meters NBEMS net:
7:00 PM ET
Dial Frequency: 3584.5 MHx
Center Frequency: 1500 Hz
Initial mode: THOR22
We will have checkins, followed by an ICS-213 format message using FLMSG.
Don Rolph AB1PH will be net control.

Winlink Net:
Bryan Marcotte KF1D will be. net control.
Send a winlink checkin form to KF1D, copy AB1PH, between 0600 Monday Dec 4 and 2400 Monday Dec 4.
We look forward to you checking in!

Don Rolph

WA2NDV: “Basic Satellite Tracking” at Billerica ARS Online Meeting, December 6, 2023

Billerica ARS logoPlease join us at the Billerica Amateur Radio Society meeting on December 6, 2023 at 7:00 PM. Frank Garofalo, WA2NDV, on Basic Satellite Tracking.


Frank was originally licensed in 1970 in Corona Queens, New York by way of the Electchester Amateur Radio Club and his cousin, Hugo (SK). He was in 8th grade at the time and it gave his life a direction.

Amateur Radio has allowed him to work in many diverse places including 18 years at NBC-NY and 15 years as a VoIP Engineer for the cable company with 3.5 million voice customers. It all started at the proverbial 5 kW three-tower directional AM radio station! Now he is retired. He asserts that the ham license and First Class (General now) Radiotelephone licenses have been more useful over the years than any college degree.

He uses an IC-9700 for satellites with an InnovAntennas on a G- 5500 AZ/EL rotor. Rig and rotor are computer controlled with S.A.T. a stand-alone satellite tracker.

His satellite contacts on LEOs and MEO as of Nov 21, 2023, 92 countries, 771 grid squares worldwide, 50 states, 4017 QSOs with 1446 unique stations and three NA1SS astronaut contacts through 41 satellites.

BARS will announce the link to join the Zoom meeting before the meeting, but it will be posted to the BARS email list and should not be shared outside our Club. Are you on the email list? If not, please send an email to bars-subscribe@w1hh.org and then simply reply to the robot response from the server and you will be subscribed.

Observing our Zoom meeting requires only a web browser and headphones/speakers. You do not need a webcam or microphone unless you want to speak or be seen.

Before our meeting date, please go to https://zoom.us/test and see if it will function for you. If you have problems, we can try to assist – feel free to ask questions on the BARS email list.

We are looking forward to “seeing” many of you on Wednesday 12/6 on the Zoom session at 1900.

Doug, N1WRN