RF GAIN

Miami County Amateur Radio Club, Inc.
RF GAIN
K9ZEV - Peru, Indiana
Sample Issue, 2014
Getting an Amateur
Radio License
To get started, you need to study and
be able to pass an examination to obtain
INSIDE
an amateur radio license. The first thing
Special Features
Getting A License 1 you need to know is which exam you need
Radio Time Line
7
to take. Assuming
you do not yet have
Departments
Meeting Minutes 2 a license, you must
ARES/RACES
3 begin with a TechniLadies With a License 2
RF GAIN Top 10
6 cian Class License.
Club Events
6 This is the entry level for all hams.
Truth & Wisdom
8 (“Ham” is a nickname for amateur radio
operator.)
Download
You need to pass a multiple-choice
Your FREE Copy!
K9ZEV.org
exam of 35 questions. Study material will
consist of a pool of 396 possible questions.
You will pass the exam when you get 26 questions or more
answered correctly. The study guide or class that you take will
cover the basic things you need to know as a licensed amateur
radio operator.
The topics you will learn about are: FCC Rules; station
license responsibilities; control operator duties; operating
practices; radio and electronic fundamentals; station setup and
Continued on page 3
RF GAIN © MCARC July, 2014 — Page 1
Minutes: July 12, 2014
Meeting was called to order by
President Bill, WD9GIU, at 11:00
a.m. at the Miami County EOC.
Jennifer, KC9HIS, read the
minutes from June meeting. The
financial report was stated and
both were accepted and filed.
The Field Day Committee
report was given by someone and
it was decided by the membership
to do better next year. (These are
not real minutes of a meeting, just
some junk to fill up space in a
mock-up newsletter. Hopefully it
will come to fruition.) –Ed.
MCARC
Meetings
Second Saturday 11:00 am at EOC
Officers
President: Bill McAlpin, WD9GIU
Vice President: Danny Webb, N9MOS
Sec./Treasurer: Jennifer Fisher, KC9HIS
Directors
John Stoeckert, KC9GWC
Gary Thorne, KC9RNN
Dwight Hammond, WC5W
Repeaters
VHF 147.345+0.6 mHz.
UHF 443.175+5.0 mHz. 131.8 pl
2-Meter Nets
MCARC NET Sun. 8:00 pm
ARES/RACES NET Mon. 8:00 pm
LADIES NET Thursdays 8:30 pm
RF GAIN
Editor: Angie Flory, KF9QW
Publisher: Dwight Hammond, WC5W
WEBSITE
For more information: K9ZEV.org
New Version of RF GAIN to
Hit the Scene
A couple of club members (oldtimers) are kicking around the
idea of resurrecting the club
newsletter RF Gain. These members are somewhat reluctant to do
so, knowing that it will probably be
a “Lone Ranger” type of task.
It has been since the mid ‘90s
that the club had a newsletter. It
was most likely dropped due to
cost of printing and mailing.
The new RF GAIN would be
made available in the portable
document format for email and
download from K9ZEV.org.
MCARC Ladies Net
Last month the Ladies Net was a
hoot! We talked about very interesting things again.
NCO on the 3rd was Deb,
N9HWT, and the topic was “Favorite TV Commercials.” That may not
sound exciting to you, but that gals
had a blast with the comments expressed.
Then on the 10th Linda,
KC9ZWX, was NCO. The regular
check-ins talked about ??? topic.
Michelle, KC9VXK, was control
operator on the 17th and her topic
was “Dirty Jobs” or “Things You
Really Dislike Doing.” There were six
RF GAIN © MCARC July, 2014 — Page 2
ladies on the net and each one
lamented on jobs they hate to
do.
On the 24th, KC9ZWX
opened the net with
the question, “Who
influenced you the
most in your life?”
Seven women chatted about the influential people in their
lives and reminisced of the
life-changing days of long ago.
Finally, on the 31st,
N9HWT was NCO again to
talk about, “How has your
summer been so far?” And
“What topics would you like
to bring to the net?” Deb got a
lot of good ideas for
topics from the
group. I’m sure all
the control ops were
taking notes that
Thursday night.
You are welcome
to join the Ladies With A
License on the MCARC Ladies
Net, Thursdays 8:30 p.m. on
147.345 mHz.
--N9HWT, Deb
Continued from page 1
operation; communications modes and methods; special operations; Emergency and Public Service Communications; radio
waves, propagation and antennas; electrical and RF Safety.
This may sound a bit overwhelming at first, but you will see
how easy it is once you get started.
What you can do with a Technician Class License.
After earning your Technician Class License, you can use all
amateur VHF and UHF frequencies (frequencies above 50
mHz). You can also operate on the 80, 40, and 15 meter HF
bands using Morse code, and on the 10 meter band using
Morse code, voice, and digital modes.
Now you say, “That’s confusing!” Let me give you an exRF GAIN © MCARC July, 2014 — Page 3
ample....
The FM radio in your car receives 88 to 108 mHz. It’s the
FM broadcast band.
These FM radio signals are line-of-sight, which means you
generally can’t receive FM stations more than 50 miles away.
On the AM broadcast band, mainly at night, you can receive
radio stations from hundreds of miles away. It is a
much lower band of frequencies.
So, when a ham radio
operater has a 2 meter rig
(a nickname for radio) in
his car, he will be using the
144 to 148 mHz. band of frequencies.
The 2 meter mobile ham will be on FM mode as well. We
sometimes refer to 2 meters as VHF (very high frequency.) Two
meters is mostly used for local communications.
The other “meter” bands (ranges of frequencies) are where
amateur radio operators have been authorized to communicate
with each other. Each band of radio frequencies acts differently.
Using the HF (high frequency) bands, hams can talk virtually
around the world!
So, when you have a Technician Class License, you are
authorized by the FCC to talk to your friends locally on VHF.
And you can use HF for long distance communications. For
instance, on the 10 meter band (28.0 to 28.5 mHz.) it is common to talk to other hams across the country, and when conditions are good you can visit with amateur radio operators
around the world.
If you feel lost, don't worry.
All hams were at this point one time. It may be hard to
RF GAIN © MCARC July, 2014 — Page 4
believe now, but this stuff will be second nature once you start
learning more about Amateur Radio. A few months after you
get the Technician Class License, you'll be talking about this
stuff like the other hams.
Do I have to learn Morse code?
No, you don't need to learn Morse code to get your ticket
(the nickname for Amateur Radio License). Beginning in
February 1991, the requirement of learning Morse code was
dropped for the Technician Class License test. In fact, in February 2007, the code requirement was eliminated from all
levels of Amateur Radio.
Morse code is still in use by many hams. Some say it's tradition, others say it's what Ham radio is all about. On the other
hand, some hams say it's outdated and needed to go, while
others say we need to
keep up with changing
technology. Many hams
still take the time to
learn code because with
poor band conditions, code is usually the most efficient way to
communicate long distance. Those di-dah-dits are easier to
hear than voice. Plus, it is another skill to learn and become
proficient at. It's just one of the many aspects of Amateur
Radio communications.
Ham License vs. CB.
Amateur Radio is a high-tech hobby that has something fun
for everyone. Hams are people from all walks of life no matter
what age, gender or physical ability. Anyone can hold an Amateur License - there's no minimum age. Hams practice courtesy
and respect for others.
Read the entire article online at
www.K9ZEV.org/articles/getting-started.php
RF GAIN © MCARC July, 2014 — Page 5
RF GAIN TOP 10...
...Bad Things about having
Darth Vader as a Guest Op
10 –Keeps referring to you as “my
Emperor.”
9 –Says all your base rigs belong
to him.
8 –His normal speaking voice is
worse than poorly tuned SSB.
7 –Says he doesn’t need a receiver, he can sense disturbances
in the Force.
6 –He keeps calling some guy
called”Luuuuuuuke.”
5 –Snack time is really not a pretty
sight.
4 –Hears a guy calling you and
immediately cuts your rig in half
with his light saber.
3 –When you key the transmitter,
it interferes with his respirator.
2 –Insists on using some kind of
Death Star repeater.
And the Number 1 Bad Thing
about having Darth Vader as a
Guest Operator...
1 –He keeps telling you to “Crank
up that there leenyar and come
over to the Dark Side.”
ur
Amate
Radio
!
Lives
MCARC Events
September 5th-7th is the
Chili Cook-off / Campout at
the Mississinewa Campground. Bill will have an HF
station set up for those who
would like to try to contact
“Indiana State Parks On The
Air.”
October 11th Miami
County Amateur Radio Club
Autumn Simplex Sprint 2meter contest. Activate as
many townships & counties as
possible.
Feedback, comments, or
article submissions are
appreciated. Please send
to [email protected]
Thank you for your
contributions, the Editor.
RF GAIN © MCARC July, 2014 — Page 6
A Radio Time Line
Lets look back at the significant events from radio history
picking up with 1917.
1917—The First transcontinental message relay is accomplished
in January.
1917—In April, 6,000 licensed amateurs shut down as
America enters World War I and 4,000 amateur enlist, Amateur Radio is suspended for the duration of the war. The US
Navy takes control of all radio use.
1917—First mention of the Wolff Hong and Rettysnitch—
devices to insure good operating practices appear in the pages
of QST.
1918—Legislation is introduced to give the Navy permanent control.
1919—In September, thanks to the efforts of the ARRL,
Amateur Radio gets back on the air.
1921—Maxim sends a message from 1AW to California and
gets a reply back in just over six minutes via relay. A second
transatlantic test is successful. American amateur signals are
heard in Scotland.
1921—The US Department of Commerce admits it cannot
control the growing ranks of Amateur Radio operators and asks
the ARRL for help.
1922—Amateurs are prohibited from broadcasting to the
public at large and a new commercial broadcasting license is
required.
1923—American amateur Fred Schnell and French amateur
Leon Deloy achieve the first two-way transatlantic contact. The
Second National Radio conference gives hams the ability to
operate anywhere within specified bands—not isolated channels of frequencies.
RF GAIN © MCARC July, 2014 — Page 7
right will be the winner. Everybody gitts a gold star, but
For Sparkgaps, & Old-Timers—All others must pay 2¢
ello and welcome to a bit the winner will have earned it,
of truth and a whole lot of hi hi.
The winner will be acknowlwisdom, my name is R.F.
Curmudgeon and I am full of edged by having their answer
it (T&W, that is!)
This column is sortof a “what is it?” Or a
“how would a radio
operator use this?”
type of place. The whole
idea is to gitt young
whippersnappers to
learn a thing or two
about RF and to make ‘em
published in the very next
realize there ain’t no such
month’s RF GAIN.
thing as a young codger.
Send me your 2¢ worth on
So now I reckon you’ll be
the above photograph via
yakkin’ it up on the 2-meter
electronic mail and share
repeaters about what in tar
nation kind of apparatus this your knowledge with some of
must be... dag-nabbit! I almost the younger hams who read
this world-famous publication!
gave it away.
I’m countin’ on ya now.
Well now here’s your home–R.F. Curmudgeon, Z9RF
work. Find out what you can
and give me your best SWAG
We receive photos & comments via email.
answer and who ever is first
Send a scan of your interesting old picture
and/or closest to gittin’ it
to [email protected]
H
RF
GAIN
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RF GAIN © MCARC July, 2014 — Page 8