NEAR-Fest Moving to Hillsborough County (NH) Fairgrounds

NEAR-Fest logoFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Phil Brooks, KA1PXZ, Chief of NEAR-Fest, is pleased to announce that, effective October 4th, 2024, the New England Amateur Radio Festival, known as NEAR-Fest, will be held at the Hillsborough County Agricultural Society Fairgrounds and Youth Center located at New Boston NH, approximately 15 miles west of Manchester.

The reason for the permanent change in venue is due to ongoing scheduling conflicts with other events at the Deerfield (NH) Fairgrounds, NEAR-Fest’s home for the past eighteen years.

The hard decision to move the popular New England hamfest was taken by a unanimous vote of NEAR-Fest’s Board of Directors on May 17th, 2024.

In endorsing the decision NEAR-Fest’s Benevolent Dictator Emeritus, Michael Crestohl, W1RC, aka “Mister Mike” commented: “This was inevitable. The Deerfield Fairgrounds is becoming more and more popular with exhibitors and, as a designated agricultural fairgrounds, they have to give priority to agricultural events. We had a fabulous eighteen-year run. I am confident that Phil and Kelley, along with their team, will take NEAR-Fest forward at our new location for many years to come.”

Other than the location nothing else will change. It is still the same NEAR-Fest we have all known and loved since 2007!

NEAR-Fest XXXVI will be held Friday October 4th and Saturday October 5th, 2024 at the Hillsborough County Agricultural Society Fairgrounds, located at 17 Hilldale Lane, (Route 13) New Boston NH. GPS Coordinates 42.9842430, -71.6793460.

See you there!

NEAR-Fest (The New England Amateur Radio Festival, Inc.)

PO Box 172, Barton VT 05822 (781) 639-9172

World Wide Web: www.near-fest.com E-mail: ka1pxz@near-fest.com

Map of Hillsborough Co. fairgroundsMap of NEAR-Fest QTH in Hillsborough Co.

KD1D Fox Hiding out in LIttleton, June 15, 2024

Alan, KD1D, writes on the NEMassFoxHunters list on June 15, 2024:

The KD1D Fox is once again at the Prouty Woods conservation area in Littleton, MA.  The official entry point to the trail is at the end of Wilderness Road, which starts just past the Police Station Parking lot.  Follow the semi-paved road (Speed Limit 10 mph), keeping an eye out for the resident chickens.  You can park near the barn and gate.  

The KD1D Fox is a 55 mW beacon transmitter, repeating a 25 second voice message every 60 seconds on 146.565 MHz FM simplex.

You probably won’t be able to hear the transmitter until you get behond utility pole # 22, so be patient and enjoy the woods and critters.  

I plan to leave the Fox out until noon on Tuesday.   If you can’t make it on the weekend, it should still be transmitting after work hours on Monday evening.

When you find it, please enter Callsign, Name, Date and Time in the logbook.

Best of luck! 73 DE KD1D Alan

Nashoba Valley ARC Field Day Press Release

Nashoba Valley ARC logoNEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Release
For additional information contact:
John Bielefeld
19 Ernie Drive
Littleton, MA 01460
Cell: 508-254-5863
Email: jeb2117@gmail.com
 
Ham Radio Operators On the Air for Nationwide Event June 22nd – 23rd
 
Ham radio operators from the Nashoba Valley Amateur Radio Club in Pepperell and surrounding towns will be participating in a national amateur radio exercise from 2PM] on Saturday until 2PM on Sunday, June 22nd – 23rd. The event is ARRL Field Day (www.arrl.org/FieldDay), an annual amateur radio activity organized since 1933 by ARRL, The National Association for Amateur Radio in the United States.
 
Hams from across North America ordinarily participate in Field Day by establishing temporary ham radio stations in public locations to demonstrate their skill and service. Their use of radio signals, which reach beyond borders, bring people together while providing essential communication in the service of communities. Field Day highlights ham radio’s ability to work reliably under any conditions from almost any location and create an independent, wireless communications network.
 
Some hams from New England will also use the radio stations set up in their homes or taken to their backyards and other locations to operate individually or with their families. Many hams have portable radio communication capability that includes alternative energy sources such as generators, solar panels, and batteries to power their equipment.
 
This year’s event is also noteworthy given that a particularly active hurricane season is predicted. “Hams have a long history of serving our communities when storms or other disasters damage critical communication infrastructure, including cell towers,” said John Bielefeld (call sign K1JEB), NVARC’s Field Day chairperson. “Ham radio functions completely independently of the internet and phone systems and a station can be set up almost anywhere in minutes. Hams can quickly raise a wire antenna in a tree or on a mast, connect it to a radio and power source, and communicate effectively with others,” Bielefeld added.
 
During Field Day 2021, more than 26,000 hams participated from thousands of locations across North America. According to ARRL, there are more than 750,000 amateur radio licensees in the US, and an estimated 3 million worldwide.
 
Among the tenets of the Amateur Radio Service is developing and practicing skills in radio technology and radio communications, and even contributing to international goodwill. Hams range in age from as young as 9 to older than 100. A self-study license guide is available from ARRL: The ARRL Ham Radio License Manual (www.arrl.org/shop/Ham-Radio-License-Manual) and for Kindle (https://read.amazon.com/kp/embed?asin=B07DFSW94G). For more information about ARRL Field Day and ham radio, contact John Bielefeld at jeb2117@gmail.com and visit www.arrl.org/what-is-ham-radio.
###

Radio Club of America: “A Lifetime of Wireless Propagation Research”

Bruce Tinkler, N9JBT, writes on the stars-radio list:

RCA: fostering wireless innovation graphic

RCA Interview Tuesday June 11, 9 p.m. ET.

A Lifetime of Wireless Propagation Research: In-Building, Underground, Tropospheric, You Name It!

Featuring Dr. Robert Johnk

Dr. Robert JohnkRobert (Bob) Johnk (M’91 – SM’07) received his Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Colorado in 1990, where he specialized in electromagnetics and antennas.

Bob recently retired as research engineer from the Institute for Telecommunication Sciences (NTIA/ITS) where he was engaged in advancing the state of the art in radio-channel propagation measurements/analysis and mentoring new engineers in the art of measurement science.

During the development of the FirstNet National Public Safety Radio System, Bob conducted research on in-building wireless propagation and methods for improving in-building public safety communications. Prior to joining NTIA/ITS in 2007, he worked at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Boulder, Colorado for 17 years, where he was the leader of the time-domain fields project.

Bob has received best paper awards from the IEEE EMC Society, NTIA, and NIST. In 2011, Bob received the IEEE EMC Society’s Technical Achievement Award for his work “in the development of free-space time-domain measurement techniques”.

Bob has also received a U.S. Department of Commerce Silver Medal award for his work in Public Safety communications. Bob is a Life Senior member of the IEEE and a member of both Eta Kappa Nu and Tau Beta Pi.

This interview will be conducted by RCA President-Emeritus, John Facella.

REGISTER HERE

Cape Cod Amateurs Assist With Communications for Dave Birtwell Walk for Alzheimer’s

On Saturday, May 18, amateur radio operators from the Falmouth Amateur Radio Association and the Barnstable Amateur Radio Club provided communications support for the Dave Birtwell Walk for Alzheimer’s at Scusset Beach State Reservation in Sandwich.
 
Jon, N1ILZ, was net control. Irish, KC1TNX, staffed the Med Tent. Doug, N1OEI, and Stephen, KC1QEM, provided communications for two golf carts to move supplies and assist walkers in need of a ride. Rich Fox, KC1TCA, and John Grullon, KC1SAT, staffed water stops while Barry, KB1TLR, monitored the walk turn-around, keeping folks on course. Ham Radio Team Captain Chris, WA1CMR, teamed up with Walk Captain Jamie Crowell in a third golf cart to monitor the course and to help where needed.
 
Despite the inclement weather the amateurs got the job done, receiving numerous thanks from the walk organizers and compliments on their professionalism. The hams are looking forward to assisting the Alzheimer’s Walk again next year. —Chris Ranney WA1CMR
 
 

Cape Ann ARA Tech-In-A-Day Review, Middleton, June 1, 2024

Cape Ann Amateur Radio Association members held a Tech-In-A-Day Review and Volunteer Exam Session on June 1, 2024, at the North Shore 911 Dispatch Center in Middleton, MA. Fourteen students attended from various 911 dispatch centers around the Boston metropolitan area.
 
“I am happy to report 12 out of 14 students passed their licenses,” reported Bill Poulin, WZ1L. 
 
Volunteer examiners included:  Bill Poulin, WZ1L; Larry Beaulieu, AJ1Z; and David Suuronen, KB1KR.
 
Kudos to the CAARA gang for a job well done!
 
CAARA Tech In A Day June 1, 2024
Shown here: CAARA Tech In A Day attendees
 
 

W1HUD Hudson High School Updates

W1HUD Update: April 2024

  • The Hudson High School Facilities installed a Diamond Vertical on the roof to complement the 18 ft tall Hy-Gain 5-band vertical antenna. Collectively we now have HF/VHF/UHF coverage. – Thank you to Facilities!  A special thanks to W1TF for his generosity for needed parts and  N1CNG for testing.
  • AARC – Kicked offed the Technician License Prep course. We have have a very excited group taking part and look forward to taking the test at the end of the year.
  • Spring – Fox Hunt Equipment – Special thanks to KV1J for organizing the equipment list and Hudson Home and School Association for purchasing the materials. 
  • Reminder W1HUD is on the Marlborough Repeater 446.675 every Friday 9:40-10:15. We typically discuss weekly topics and jump on around 10am. – Join us!

 

W1HUD Update: May 2024

  • AARC – Is wrapping up the very first Technician License Prep Course.  We have three students looking forward to taking their test some time this Summer.
  • The First W1HUD Fox Hunt – Special thanks to AARC for organizing a successful Fox Hunt. The students had a great time working with AARC and HHS Volunteers to learn about the technology and techniques needed to find a low frequency transmitter on the HHS campus.
  • The club will get together will get together one last time for the 23-24 school year on Friday 6/7 – Reminder W1HUD will likely be on the Marlborough Repeater 446.675 around 10am. – Join us!
Hudson High School W1HUD group photo
SPRING 2024: Some of the W1HUD crew. Thanks to AARC Members: KV1J, N1CNG, KA1PON, KA1GFN, N1NVJ, K1NKR and HHS Technology Staff for making it happen.

Field Day Publicity Suggestions

ARRL Field Day 2024 logoBill McIninch, KA1MOM, writes:

This is from the Facebook open group for Field Day, a page read almost entirely by hams:

1) Posting in the Field Day group on Facebook is not likely to get you any more visibility with the public or get people to come visit your site. So if your goal is to get visitors, especially non-ham visitors, rethink where you are posting.
 
2) Make sure that your posts contain all the necessary information such as:
 
  • What the event is all about (make it understandable for non-hams)
  • Why someone might want to visit
  • Where the event is (include an address)
  • When the event is (use local times), especially when it’s open for public tours
  • Who is involved (include point of contact info) and who is invited
  • How to get more info (maybe use a QR code that takes people to a website)
3) Consider creating an Event, not just a post. Events are shared by Facebook.
 
4) Avoid technical jargon.
 
5) For other hams to find you, make sure you put your location in the Field Day Locator.

ARRL Service Disruption

Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC, writes:

Hello everyone,

Many of you have probably noticed that several ARRL online services and the HQ phone system have been down. The ARRL is working as quickly as possible to restore all services, and progress is being made. You can see the current status of the restoration at this link –

http://www.arrl.org/news/arrl-systems-service-disruption

You can check this link periodically for further updates. It will likely take some time to get everything fully back up and running. We appreciate your patience.

——————————————————————–
ARRL New England Division
Director: Fred Kemmerer, AB1OC
ab1oc@arrl.org
——————————————————————–

You-Do-It To Close

You-Do-It logoAn iconic Boston-area store, You-Do-It Electronics Center in Needham, will soon close its doors:

To all our valued customers, 
 
Join us in commemorating the legacy of iconic “Youdoit” Electronics Center. For 75 remarkable years, we’ve been the cornerstone of the electronics industry, delivering exceptional products and unparalleled service.
 
After many fulfilling years of serving our community, we’re announcing the closure of our beloved store. While the decision to close is bittersweet, we know that the memories created will endure. 
 
As we prepare for this transition, we encourage you to come say goodbye and take advantage as we sell off our existing inventory and place special orders for popular products. Additionally, we will be selling office furniture and industrial shelving at deep discounts.
 
Please note we will be closed Saturday, May 25 through Monday, May 27 for Memorial Day Weekend. Our new hours of operations starting Tuesday May 28 will be 10am to 5pm Monday through Friday. 
 
Thank you for your patronage. Stay tuned for details on the exact closing date and any special events in the upcoming weeks. 

N1DM: “OSCAR Program” at Wellesley ARS Hybrid Meeting, May 21, 2024

General Meeting, May 21, 7:30 PM

Topic: The OSCAR Satellite Program, presented by Dom N1DM

Warren Recreation Center, 90 Washington St., Wellesley, near the intersection of Route 16 and Walnut St.
https://wellesleyma.gov/720/Warren-Recreation-Center

Parking is in the rear of the building and folks can enter at the basement level double doors, through the light tan wood doors, then take a left and up an ADA ramp. We will be in Room 008 on the right near the end of the hallway. If entering through the main front doors, one simply takes the elevator or stairs down to the basement.

This meeting will also be available on Zoom. [Contact danbrownw1dan (at) gmail -dot- com for details]

W1MJ Fox Deployed, Belmont, May 17, 2024

Eliot Mayer, W1MJ, writes on the NEMassFoxHunters list on May 17, 2024 at 7:16 PM:
 
The W1MJ Fox is deployed for the weekend.
 
Location:  Lone Tree Hill Conservation Area in Belmont, MA
Parking:  Mill St (main parking lot), Belmont Day School, and a spot or two along Concord Ave
 
Fox Details
Call:  W1MJ
Frequency:  147.54 MHz (corrected from previous post)
Power:  4 watts
Hours of Operation:  7:00 AM to 7:00 PM Local Time, May 18-19
 
This fox is running much higher power than most of the other foxes announced on this forum.  Come prepared – attenuator, 3rd harmonic in memory, etc.
 
Map of Lone Tree Conservation Area
 

KD1CY: “SKYWARN” at PART of Westford Hybrid Meeting, May 21, 2024

PART of Westford logoThe May [PART of Westford] meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 21, 2024, beginning at 7:30 PM at the Cameron Senior Center, 20 Pleasant Street, Westford, MA, and via Webex video conference.  For those attending via video conference, a meeting link is below; just click on the green button to join in.  You can join the conference any time after 7:00 PM to check out your gear or just rag chew until the meeting starts. Bear in mind that internet connectivity from the senior center may be unreliable.
 
The meeting agenda includes 
  • A presentation on SKYWARN by Rob Macedo, KD1CY, Eastern Massachusetts Section Emergency Coordinator. Rob has also served as the ARES SKYWARN Coordinator for NWS Boston/Norton (formerly Taunton) since 1996 and has been an avid SKYWARN Spotter since he got his Ham license in 1988.
  • Field Day plans.
 
All attendees are encouraged to bring donations of non-perishable food for the Westford Food Pantry.
 
See you Tuesday!
 
73,
George, K1IG

President, PART of Westford 

[Contact George Allison, K1IG, at geogeall@me.com for WebEx meeting invite]

NA1T: “Emergency Management and American Red Cross,” Nashoba Valley ARC Meeting, May 16, 2024

Nashoba Valley ARC logoThe Nashoba Valley Amateur Radio Club’s May meeting is Thursday, May 16th at 7:30 PM at the Pepperell Community Center (in Pepperell). We start gathering at 7 PM to socialize before the meeting starts.

May’s guest speaker will be Steve Davidson, NA1T. Steve is heavily involved with emergency management and the Red Cross in the New Hampshire amateur radio community. Steve will be describing and demonstrating some of the equipment he uses in emergency deployments, as well as what he and his ARC cronies were up to during the recent Solar Eclipse.

I’m looking forward to Steve’s presentation!

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

Amateur Volunteers Requested, Dave Birtwell Memorial Walk for Alzheimer’s, Sandwich, May 18, 2024

Barnstable ARC logoWe still need three or four more volunteers to for the Dave Birtwell Memorial Walk for Alzheimer’s at Scusset Beach Reservation, Sandwich this Saturday, May 18th, 2024.
 
Volunteers to be at the walk from 10-3 with a 2 meter handheld radio. Jon, N1ILZ, will provide Net Control for a 2 meter simplex net and I will be coordinating our activities the walk headquarters.
 
Time is short and we could really use your help. 
 
Christopher Ranney
WA1CMR
508-681-9981

WO1VES: “Fusion, C4FM, and Wires X Yaesu Digital Mode Echosystem” at Cape Ann ARA Meeting, May 11, 2024

CAARA logoCape Ann ARA Presidenet Brandon Hockle, NQ1W, writes on the CAARA mailing list:

Hello Members and Friends of Cape Ann Amateur Radio Association,

Just a quick reminder that Brian Gudzevich, WO1VES, will be giving a talk on Yaesu System Fusion / C4FM / Wires X and the Yaesu digital mode radio ecosystem up at the CAARA Stanwood Clubhouse this weekend Saturday 5/11 @ noon.
 
Lunch will be available for a small donation to our repeater maintenance fund, which will help CAARA in its mission to replace the damaged 2m antenna system at Blackburn Circle with a new commercial grade antenna setup.
 
This should be another fun time for the club, as our tech talk series during the members meeting have all been really well attended. I think you’ll agree that this year’s speakers have been excellent, each bringing  some fresh new insights on well traveled paths of our hobby as well completely new topics for us to learn. All levels of operator should find value in these great presentations on radio!
 
I hope to see you all there!
 
Regards,
Brandon Hockle NQ1W

WB2BEZ: “Grounding and Safety In The Ham Shack” at Billerica ARS Hybrid Meeting, May 1, 2024

Billerica ARS logoDoug Bruce, N1WRN, writes on the Billerica ARS web site:

I am pleased to announce that we will be having Donald Kane, WB2BEZ, as our Guest Speaker for the in person/Zoom Meeting at the Church on May 1, 2024 at 7:00 PM. Don will be presenting on Grounding and Safety In The Ham Shack, so you won’t want to miss this talk! Here is Don’s bio for inclusion in the May Newsletter.

Don has been a licensed ham for over 45 years (ARRL Life Member) and is a Registered Professional Engineer in the State of New York with over 40 years of engineering experience including: Product Safety Evaluation; Electric Utility Substation and Plant engineering; Design and Manufacture of Diesel powered generators, including controls and switchgear; rail transit rolling stock and infrastructure engineering and electrical construction and HVAC. This talk will present an overview of grounding and bonding, as applied to the typical amateur radio installation, with regard to power, lightning protection and RF (antenna) grounding.

We 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.

I am looking forward to “seeing” many of you on Wednesday 5/1 here at 1900.

Doug, N1WRN

The Zola Gang Builds a Kit

Dan Brown, W1DAN, writes:

On a rainy Saturday April 20, members of the Zola-Middlesex amateur radio club gathered at the Brigham House in Newton Massachusetts to build a kit! In attendance were club members Frank, N1FMV,;Nina, N1NGK; Matt, N1IBB; Jerry, W3BBP; Nora, N1GLE and Margaret, KA1BZE. The helpers were Bob, WA1UIY; Tony, K1CEI; Don, KB1OTQ and YL Odette; Dave, W8JVY; Bruce, KC1FSZ and Dan, W1DAN.

Of note the Zola gang consist of hams who have sight and emotional impairments. The club was formed by Eric Falkov, K1NUN (SK), in 2012. After his passing in 2013, Bob ran the club and merged the Middlesex club into the Middlesex -Zola Amateur Radio Club. Frank N1FMV is now president.

The Zola radio members digging into the kits.

Figure 1 . The Zola radio members digging into the kits

To get the project started, Bob researched and ordered enough of the $20 TM-Tech DP-TM-0259 FM receiver kits from Amazon for all who wanted to build one. Before our session Bob built one of the kits to gauge the build process and difficulty. Dan and Bruce went to Bob’s QTH to check the kits out as well.  These kits contain an RDA Microelectronics RDA5807M single chip broadcast FM radio tuner and an MD8002A thee-watt audio power amplifier IC on a small printed circuit board. The FM receiver IC uses I and Q decoding and a DSP core to process stereo audio. It is essentially a Software-Defined Radio. Two AA batteries supply 3v to the system and a 2.5” speaker that provides surprisingly good sound. This kit requires no soldering and the only tool needed was a small Philips head screwdriver, which was supplied.

Bruce KC1FSZ assisting Matt N1IBB with his radio kit build

Figure 2 . Bruce, KC1FSZ, assisting Matt, N1IBB, with his radio kit build.

After Bruce explained the theory of operation of the receiver IC, club members were introduced to the feel of all parts as the helpers explained the part and how it should be assembled. The case was formed of light wood similar to Balsawood that wrapped around the sides and attached using tongue and groove as well as very small screws. Some of the instructions were not clear and the screw sizes needed at certain locations turned out to be wrong, but once we figured all that out, the process went smoothly.

Nora N1GLE was the first to finish a kit!

Figure 3 . Nora, N1GLE, was the first to finish a kit!

After success, folks enjoyed pizza for lunch. This was a fun project that provided the club members with efficient FM receivers for future enjoyment. Who knows, maybe they will hear some distant stations via summertime tropospheric ducting. Many thanks to Bob, Bruce, Don, Odette, Dave and Tony for good assistance!

73,

Dan Brown

W1DAN

April 21, 2024