SCARS News July 14, 2020


Meeting Wrapup – SDR Presentation — Menu

The July SCARS meeting was another great event. This time we had 15 in-person attendees, including three new hams. Congrats to these new licensees and upgraders. We also had about 17 folks that attended on the Zoom platform, and another 34 that watched the YouTube Live version.

This week’s presentation was performed by Jorge Duarte W3JDG over the Zoom system. This worked out well as he talked about the $20 to $400 SDR devices, he could show them in use at his radio ranch. The entire presentation is available on the SCARS YouTube channel so you can watch it for the first time, or watch it again to pick up some details that you missed the first time. Jorge has also made his presentation slides available online at Google docs.

During his talk, Jorge demonstrated some SDR’s that received airplane VHF AM signals, HF Morse code (from Russia), HF sideband signals, and VHF/UHF FM signals. Shown above is a screenshot of SDRAngel as it decodes a signal from the local DMR repeater. On the left, you can see the signal pulse from the repeater in normal spectrum analyzer display, and on the right, you see the QAM decoding. Additional information is also available on the SCARS SDR page. Thanks, Jorge for a great event.


Elmer Nights – Online Only — Menu

The SCARS Elmer Nights continue to be wildly popular in the online version and we’ll continue to meet using Zoom, YouTube, and the telephone. However, since the in-person meetings haven’t caught back on, we will stop those events until the conditions improve. During the online sessions, we have been able to diagnose, fix, and share a wide range of amateur radio problems. Last week someone was having trouble setting up a digital HF mode, and the group was able to help fix the problem and even provided signal reports to prove the signals were making the trip. Our most recent ‘defector’, Mike Furstenau N5MAF was on board to provide remote signal reports from his new QTH in Grayling, MI. There have been numerous antenna designs, discussions, and visual progress reports on a ton of projects.

So, until the conditions improve, fire up your computers or phones and we’ll see you Tuesday Nights from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm. Please visit the Elmer Nights page to learn the Zoom, YouTube, and telephone connection methods, and we hope to see you on the Elmer Nights.


Windstorm Aftermath — Menu

Last Saturday evening a storm blew through town that contained wind gusts from 80 to 115 miles per hour. The photo shown here was the first that gave an indication that there may be some trouble in the SCARS ham world. Kim Elmore N5OP was out checking the airfield and noticed the missing tower as he drove by. Last week we had the task of taking down the tower at the old Norman Red Cross building. Mission accomplished…

On second glance you’ll see that the wind made it happen. The HF beam elements survived, with some bends, but the boom has crumpled like the soda can material it’s made of. The Ringo Ranger made the trip to the ground with a few more bends in its ring, and the 80/40/20 fan dipole is still intact. A few of the spacers broke when the tower landed on them, but it should be none the worse.

Armed only with a water pump plier, Mark Kleine N5HZR was able to dismantle the rig and get it out of the parking lot.

The failure mode was fairly predictable. These unguyed towers typically flex frequently and the concrete stops the movement. Therefore the metal at the joint tends to fatigue and snap off. The top leg has shown to be rusty and turned out to be the weak link. The wind blast came from the N / NW and gave it the final push.

Richard Adkins K5RHA reports some additional trouble with his “what used to be vertical” vertical. Facebook reporters have deemed this now an inverted L, and the signal reports haven’t been favorable. If I remember correctly, that antenna suffered greatly in the last big ice storm.

And finally, Kenn Goodson KA5KXW reports that his dipole pulled down the tree used to anchor one end. While the force required to do this exceeds the 18 gauge wire used for the dipole, it makes for a great story.

There’s lots more lightning and wind damage all over town, so be careful as you move through town, and it might be worth looking at all of the hardware that you have hanging in trees, poles, and on house brackets.


LearnMorse H & Z — Menu

On the SCARS web pages, we have developed a series called LearnMorse to help you learn the 40 characters of the International Morse Code in 20 lessons. To help you stay active here is lesson 14, which starts with the characters H and Z. You can sign up there to receive email reminders to stay involved. Play the following audio to hear what these two characters sound like:

Text sent: h h h h h hhh z z z z z zzz hz zz hz hzz hzz hhz hzh h z

Characters Previously Learned

Characters that we’ve already learned are:
A E F G I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W Y 0 5 9 comma period slash


QRZ013: The Wit and Wisdom of the Great Q.R. Zedd — Menu

This ongoing series was written by SCARS charter member SK Jack Bickham WB5TZZ / KU5B. Jack was a prolific novelist, his two most known works were turned into the movies “The Apple Dumpling Gang”, and “Bakers Hawk.” These 104 Q. R. Zedd articles were originally published in the Central Oklahoma Radio Amateurs (CORA) Newsletter, the Collector & Emitter from September 1981 through April 1990, and are hosted on the SCARS web site. We are reprinting this series to provide you with a glimpse of the past.

Originally published in the October 1982 C&E.

The opening of the football season brings to mind the fact that Oklahoma’s premier DXer, the great Q.R. Zedd, was also a great sports star in his younger days, and remains today one of the Most brilliant analytical minds in the sports world.

This should not surprise us. When you are great — as Zedd himself is wont to remind his pals — you are great.

“I predict that it is going to be a great season for the Sooners as well as for the Cowboys of Stillwater,” Zedd, his booted feet propped up comfortably in the den of his home at Honor Roll Ranch, told us recently. “I expect OU to mop up on everybody and OSU to be close behind.”

Zedd, who was an all-American in four college sports — football, basketball, baseball and DXing — made a number of cogent gridiron predictions, among them the following:

Oklahoma will change its offense, putting the ball in the air at least fifty times, ten or fifteen of these times on purpose.

Oklahoma State will back away from its plan to redshirt Pistol Pete, and Pete will be out there as usual.

Tom Osborne will figure out still another way to lose a couple of games (including Oklahoma, of course), and will write a book about it.

Texas will go 2-9 for the year, winning only over Oklahoma and the Little Sisters of the Poor.

Notre Dame will lose a game, starting a fan campaign to bring back Terry Brennan.

Ohio State will lose a game, starting a fan campaign to bring back Woody.

Northwestern will lose a game… and then another game… and then another game….

Sportswriters will write a lot about having college football playoffs again. This will give them something to put in their Thursday columns, between the Wednesday columns about the latest football ratings and the Friday columns about how stupid the ratings are.

“Actually,” said Zedd, “my favorite sport aside from DXing is basketball. It is little known, but I helped Billy Tubbs a whole lot-with his team last year. You might say I taught him everything he knows.

“We had a great team my senior year in college,” Zedd went on, waxing nostalgic. “We played firewagon basketball. We tried playing defense in my junior year, but nobody liked it much. So in my senior year we just let you score as fast as you could so we could get the ball and go score on you. It usually worked great, as everyone knows.

“We had a play in my junior year, too,” Zedd went on. “We would come down and throw the ball into the post. Only we all kept forgetting how it went so we gave up on that, too.

“What we would do is, our point guard would hold up one or two fingers as he brought the ball upcourt, and people would think we had plays. It confused everybody, a little like when you call out of turn in a list operation and then act so innocent and apologetic that the MC decides to be a good guy too and lets you in after you missed the list.

“As history records, we had a truly great team. I think we would have won the NCAA if our center hadn’t been showing off for the cheerleaders and jumped up and fractured his skull on the backboard one night, which came right after our best-coordinated forward fell off the bench while tying his shoelaces and twisted his knee.,.”

Baseball was wonderful also, Zedd reminisced. “I used to love it when the big, fat guys were finished with football and the tall skinny ones were through with basketball and only us supremely gifted and well-rounded athletes were left, cavorting around out there on the diamond,” he said.

Zedd pitched for his team, recording seven no-hitters and a dozen one-hitters in his illustrious career. When not on the mound he played center field, and was an all-American at both positions as a junior and senior, He batted 722 as a senior, with 42 home runs in 39 games, including the College World Series in Omaha where he beat Southern California with a no-hitter, 4.-0, and went four for four at the plate, including three triples and a double, and four runs batted in. He was offered a job with the New York Yankees, as is well known, but declined because he preferred DX and did not want to put his pal Mickey Mantle out of work,

It was at this time that Zedd went to Hollywood for a few months, playing Ronald Reagan in three chimpanzee epics.

Zedd is also a superlative Frisbie player. He used to be a common sight on the University of Oklahoma’s South Oval, frolicking with the unspayed faculty dogs and student weirdos, but he had to quit when some lesser Frisbie players grew so discouraged after watching his excellence that they took the extreme way out and went to class,

“There is, however, no sport as great as DXing,” Zedd opined. “No other sport – not even Monday Night Football — is so demanding of great endurance and steadiness under pressure. Howard Cosell may think it’s tough to be an NFL quarterback, but that’s nothing compared to trying to crack a pileup with only a few kilowatts and a wide-spaced monobander. Why, only the other night I heard a horrendous pileup and recognized that it was for my good friend Randi in New Delhi, As I had not spoken with Randi for two days, naturally I tried to break in. Would you believe that even with my equipment and great natural talent on the airwaves, it took THREE calls to get him? I was nearly a nervous wreck!

“I am reminded of the time I was operating alone from high mountains in Tibet. The native bearers had deserted me, Even Ronald Coleman had gone home. I pluckily stuck it out, working the key with alternate hands while warming the other one with an ice cube. I worked 13,500 in two days, and was later given the Legion of Merit award by a grateful French government for my brave exploits when it developed that a lost regiment of the Foreign Legion saved itself from certain death in a desert sandstorm by setting their bearings on the steady, unfailing note of my distant CW transmitter, Or consider the time I went to Russia and saved a wrecked train by sending CW signals from the site with torn telegraph wires I held in my teeth, Why, son, it is possible to have sport and adventure in DXing even in your own home. No baseball team can say that.

Naturally we longed to hear more from the great man. But there was a contest on 40 meters, and Zedd said he felt an obligation to get on and allow a few hundred lucky stations to work him before bedtime.

“You mean,” we said, aghast, “that there are actually stations out there you have not yet worked?”

New stations are licensed every day,” Zedd pointed out to us, “And others are reinstated. I feel I have obligations, you know, and miles to go before I sleep.”

With that, he headed for the west wing of his modest shack. Soon we heard the howl of the generators and saw the artificial aurora effects caused by Zedd’s antennas, His voice sounded a bit tired on the mobile rig as we listened to him work the lucky ones on our way back to town. But he did not complain. Such are the burdens of greatness.

— KU5B


Newsletter News — Menu

This newsletter is announced in a number of places. Feel free to subscribe to the way that suits you best. If you’re an email person, you can subscribe by visiting https://w5nor.org/email. If you’re a twitter person, visit us at https://w5nor.org/twitter. And, each newsletter announcement is posted on the Facebook group at https://w5nor.org/facebook. And, if you like to search this yourself, you can go straight to the newsletter at https://w5nor.org/newsletter. Any way you found the newsletter, we’re glad you made it.

And, this newsletter should be for, and about, you. If you have a neat build project to share, or an interesting QSO, a new radio review, a new idea, an upcoming event, a member spotlight, or if you’d like to help produce the newsletter, please send an email to w5nor@w5nor.org. These don’t have to be polished articles, we’ll edit as required. Don’t forget a picture or two, that picture is worth a thousand words.


Local Hamfests — Menu

Briefly, here’s the list of the upcoming local hamfests. Hamfests are always great places to buy new equipment, sell your underused equipment, and find that great flea market bargain. They are always a great place to meet local hams and learn some new tricks.

7/24-25/2020 | Ham Holiday | Location: Online Event
8/22-23/2020 | Joplin Hamfest | Location: Joplin, MO
9/05/2020 | Arkansas State Convention | Location: Mena, AR
9/20/2020 | Reno County KS Hamfest | Location: Hutchinson, KS
10/04/2020 | Wichita Area Hamfest | Location: Wichita, KS
10/24-25/2020 | Texoma Hamarama Hamfest | Location: Ardmore, OK
11/1/2020 | Enid Hamfest | Location: Enid, OK
3/6/2021 | Elk City Hamfest | Location: Elk City, OK
4/2/2021 | Ozark Con – 4 States QRP | Location: Branson, MO
4/9-10/2021| Green Country Hamfest | Location: Claremore, OK
5/21-23/2021 | Dayton Hamvention | Location: Xenia, OH
6/17-19/2021 | Ham-Com | Location: Plano, TX

The ARRL maintains a list of all US hamfests if you would like to travel. Click here for the ARRL list of those within 250 miles.


Dates to Remember — Menu


SCARS Is On The Web — Menu

News, links, repeater info, hamfests, licensing, and more are linked from the menu sidebar at the SCARS Homepage – W5NOR.ORG!


Podcast: On The Air — Menu

The On the Air podcast is a companion to the bi-monthly On the Air magazine (an ARRL membership benefit) and takes a deeper dive into select features and projects. Each month, host and On the Air Editorial Director Becky Schoenfeld W1BXY will offer additional resources, techniques, and hints to help you get the most from the magazine’s content.

Audio Link

ARRL On the Air – Episode 7

A discussion of how to properly solder a PL259 coaxial cable connector. Also, courses that will help improve your public service skills.

The “On The Air” podcast homepage is available by clicking here.


ARRL DX Bulletin — Menu

SB DX @ ARL $ARLD028
ARLD028 DX news

ZCZC AE28
QST de W1AW  
DX Bulletin 28  ARLD028
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  July 9, 2020
To all radio amateurs   

SB DX ARL ARLD028
ARLD028 DX news

This week's bulletin was made possible with information provided by
The Daily DX, the OPDX Bulletin, 425 DX News, DXNL, Contest Corral
from QST and the ARRL Contest Calendar and WA7BNM web sites.  Thanks
to all.

THAILAND, HS.  Champ, E21EIC will operate E2A in the IARU HF World
Championship in a SOAB Mixed effort.  QSL via E21EIC and LoTW.

CROATIA, 9A.  Members of the Radio Klub Novi Bokanjac are operating
as 9A164T from Zadar to mark the birthday of Nikola Tesla.  QSL via
bureau or eQSL.

PHILIPPINES, DU.  Members of the Ham Society of the Philippines are
operating as DZ30SH from Malolos City until August 29, supporting
STAYHOME activities.  QSL via LoTW or eQSL.

BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA, E7.  Vedo, E72U informs us that E7HQ will be
the Headquarters Station of ARABH in the IARU contest.  QSL via
E70ARA or LoTW.

BONAIRE, PJ4.  John, K4BAI will participate in the IARU HF World
Championship as PJ4A.  Before and after the contest he will sign
PJ4/K4BAI.  QSL via K4BAI.

RUSSIA, RA.  Victor, RV3YR and Viktor, RN3YN will commemorate the
first Soviet-American space flight in the Apollo-Soyuz program with
the call sign UE45SA.  They will be QRV from July 11 to 19.  QSL via
RV3YR (d/B) or ClubLog OQRS.

POLAND, SP.  Special event station SN87LOT commemorates the
transatlantic flight of the Lithuanian pilots Steponas Darius and
Stasys Girenas 87 years ago.  QSL via SP1PMY, direct or via the
bureau.

CANADA, VE.  VC3STYWELL, the third COVID-19 special event station
run by The Seven Thirty Social Distancing Net, will be active until
July 19.  QSL via VE3ES.

INDONESIA, YB.  Special event station 8A343CJR celebrates the 343rd
anniversary of the Cianjur District on Java.  They will be QRV until
July 12 on 80, 40, 20, 15 and 2 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY, FT8 and
FM.  QSL via direct from info at qrz.com.

GREENLAND, OX.  Bo, OZ1DJJ will be QRV from Aasiaat Island as OX3LX
until July 30.  Look for him on 40 to 4 meters.  He will also try to
activate other islands of this IOTA group.  QSL via OZ0J.

OGASAWARA, JD.  Tony, JD1/JH1FFW will be QRV from July 15 to 19 on
40, 20, 15, 10 and 6 meters using SSB and FT8.  QSL via LoTW, eQSL
or the bureau system.

FAROE ISLANDS, OY.  Torsten, OY/DL4APJ and Udo, OY/DL2AQI will be
QRV September 15 to 23, holiday style on 80 to 10 meters, using CW,
SSB, RTTY, PSK and FT8.  QSL to their home QTHs direct, or via the
DARC bureau, eQSL or LoTW.

KOSOVO, Z6.  German team Z66DX will be QRV from October 15 to 28, on
160 to 10 meters, including the newer bands.  Look for them using
CW, SSB, RTTY and FT8.  Operators are DJ9KH, DL2AMD, DL2AWG, DL3APO,
DL9GFB and DM2AUJ.  QSL through Club Log OQRS for direct or bureau.
The LoTW upload will come later.

RUSSIA, R1.  The Russian Robinson Club announces that Milhail, R1MJ,
Yulia, R1CBL and Vitalia, RA1AGJ will be QRV from Gogland Island
(EU-133) from July 23 to 28.  They plan to operate in the RSGB IOTA
Contest with their individual calls.  Activity will be on 160 to 15
meters.  QSL via home calls.

BULGARIA, LZ.  During this year's IARU HF World Championship the
Bulgarian Federation of Radio Amateurs 80 meter HQ station will be
transmitting as LZ0AA from The Vakarel Transmitter broadcasting
facility which has been off the air since January 1, 2015.  The
transmit antenna, which was erected in 1937, is 215 meters high.
After the contest the antenna will be taken down.

CORSICA, TK.  Max, DL8UW is active as TK4VQO.  He is QRV on 160 to 6
meters using CW and SSB.  You can also find him every day on the
Medical Assistance Radio (MAR) net on 14332 kHz at 0730z.  QSL via
home call.

BURKINA FASO, XT2.  Max, DK1MAX will be active as XT2MAX sometime
during November to December.  Activity is usually holiday style on
all bands using mostly CW and FT8.  Look for more details to be
forthcoming.

THIS WEEKEND ON THE RADIO.  The IARU HF World Championship, FISTS
Summer Unlimited Sprint, SKCC Weekend Sprintathon and the QRP ARCI
Summer Homebrew Sprint will keep contesters busy this weekend.  The
4 States QRP Group Second Sunday Sprint is on July 13, the RSGB
80-Meter Club Championship, SSB is on July 15, and the NAQCC CW
Sprint is on July 16.  Please see July 2020 QST page 74 and the ARRL
Contest Calendar and WA7BNM Contest Web Site for details.
NNNN
/EX

The latest ARRL DX Bulletin is always at the top hereARRL DX Bulletin


Amateur Radio Newsline — Menu

– SAILOR IN DISTRESS GETS HAM RADIO HELP
– SWISS SOTA ACTIVATORS MARK 15 YEARS ON AIR
– WIRELESS INSTITUTE OF AUSTRALIA MEETING SET THIS MONTH
– TOWERING OPPOSITION FOR VERMONT HAM’S PLANS
– UK REGULATORS DELAY RADIO SWITCHOVER TO DIGITAL
– KIDS’ CW CLUB GETS VANITY CALL SIGN
– NEW ARES TO SERVE RURAL WEST VIRGINIA
– IARU NAMES NEW COORDINATOR OF ELECTROMAGNETIC COMPATIBILITY
– WORLD OF DX
– KICKER: EXCHANGING VOWS AND SIGNAL REPORTS

SCRIPT

AUDIO

The Amateur Radio Newsline can be found at ARNewsline.org.


Ham Nation — Menu

Bob and Don remember Charlie Daniels, Paul Ewing N6PSE on the Intrepid-DX group, Neil Rapp WB9VPG with Virtual YOTA Day Winners, Amateur Radio Newsline with Don, Solar Update with Dr. Tamitha Skov, stick antennas with Gordo, your questions with Amanda and more!

The last half-dozen or so episodes are linked right here: Ham Nation


73 de Mark N5HZR

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