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CARA's annual Junk in the Trunk ham swap meet & sales will take place October 9th at 08:00 at the Culpeper Agricultural Enterprises on Rt 29 in Culpeper. We expect vendors as well as a bunch of hams with equipment to sell, swap, or buy. Come on out and enjoy the day. Bring your radio "junk" to sell / swap - admission is still just $5 per car. Hope to see you there!



Email for information: k4mvm@arrl.net

Club: Culpeper Amateur Radio Assn (CARA)

On site testing?: No

Conferences / Workshops?: No

Flea market: Yes

Indoor / Outdoor: Outdoor

Cost: $5.00 per car

Ham Community attending?: We will not be attending

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Is it time to rename the hobby?
It used to be that an "Amateur" was someone who was not paid for something they did. The Olympics were Amateur Sports.  The best of the best but no one got paid to train and compete.  The definition of amateur was:"noun 1. a person who engages in a pursuit, especially a sport, on an unpaid rather than a professional basis."  Then somewhere along the line a second definition was added: "2. a person who is incompetent or inept at a particular activity."  this seems to be the more accepted definition.  

Should we be renaming ourselves to "Volunteer Radio Operators" to shake that definition of incompetence from our hobbies name?  
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So I found this tide clock in a thrift store.  About a pound of solid brass, not the thin tin brass stuff.  I had seen them online for $160 but there wasn't a price tag on it.  I asked the lady how much it was, expecting to hear $60 - $80 or so.  She said the clock doesn't work and she'd take fifteen bucks for it.   I couldn't get my wallet out fast enough.

I bought a clock mechanism for ten bucks and did some photoshop work on some photo cardstock.   Now I got a neat clock for the shack.

""CQD, CQD, this is Titanic......."

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Feedback please: Homebrew grounding system
After having spoke with several seasoned hams about my setup, I've come to the conclusion that I need a grounding system for my rigs and antennas for safety purposes. For the past few days I've been doing some research and I've come up with a system that I think will work and will last, but I have some questions and I would like some feedback. Thanks in advance!
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Do you operate in the heat? Want a hat or cap that will keep you cool? Want breathable masks and gaiters? Check out Mission.
From their website:
Mission® was created to help you lead an active lifestyle so that you could do more and enjoy more in the heat. With thoughtful design and state of the art technology, we’ve developed a broad portfolio of instant cooling gear which includes hats, neck gaiters, towels and more. They cool instantly and keep you cool for hours so you can do more of whatever it is you love.

We take pride in creating products that support your passions and enhance your experiences from going on a run to doing work in the yard. That is why all of our cooling gear is made from lightweight, ultrasoft, proprietary fabrics with cooling technology that enhance the natural process of evaporation. Additionally, they are always chemical free and will never wash out. 

When the heat challenges you to do less...

Cool More. Do More.™
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K3MRI at QSO Today 2021
Hi Ham Community. This coming weekend I'll be giving a presentation on 'Shaping the Future of Ham Radio' on QSO Today. My presentation is on Saturday August 14 from 2200 to 2300 UTC 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM Eastern. If you'd like to attend, here is the link to register at QSO Today.
If you'd like to discuss anything I say or have any further questions, feel free to do so here.
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Horizontal V - AKA Vee Beam
@KW4TO and I have been discussing the horizontal V. It's a really interesting antenna. Thinking of building one and trying it out. Needs quite a bit of space but, in theory, if well set up could do very well. Here is an article by Andrew Roos ZS1AM from 2004.

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Carolina repeaters
Well.  If no one else from North Carolina is going to make the first post to the "Tarheel" section, I reckon I'll do it. Most of you learned Ham operators know that the true inventor of "Radio" was a man named Reginald Fessenden and not Guglielmo Marconi.  No offense to Guglielmo Marconi because he made some extraordinary discoveries and got other scientists interested in the possibilities of radio.  But Marconi used "spark" transmissions.  Fessenden was a proponent of Continuous Wave transmissions.   It is true that Fressenden proved his concept using a continuous spark transmission, but Fessenden went on to develop the concept to what we now know today as radio.  Much of Fessenden's work occurred on The Outer Banks of North Carolina at the same time the Wright Brothers were here doing their experiments on their "flying machine".   In 1900, Fessenden made the first transmission of speech by radio when he transmitted a 127-word voice message from his North Carolina Cape Hatteras transmitter tower to a tower on Roanoke Island, North Carolina.  In 1906 he made the first radio transmission across the Atlantic Ocean.

Due to ut situation on the warm Atlantic Ocean, and our proximity to the cool air of the Smoky Mountains, North Carolina is the land of the word “ducting”.  Due to temperature changes occurring constantly over the water and land structures we have an absolute radio wonderland for those that are into that.  If you are interested in Hamming it up while on vacation North Carolina is the place to string up a dipole or a G5RV.  Coastal North Carolina will not disappoint you, Ten AND 6 are wide open.
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Civility on the air
As many of you know, Ham Census has been gathering impressions from operators... what do we think about various aspects of the hobby. More importantly, being solutions-oriented, Ham Census asks them to send a message to various constituencies, among them, other hams.

One operator said this:

I would therefore like to both start a mini poll here and a discussion around civility in amateur radio. Also, if you believe there is a lack of civility, how do we improve things?
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Home-made CW key
I started work on my key the other day.  Unfortunately none of the stores around here have 1/2 x 1/2 square stock for the beam so I'm at a stopping place until I order it online.  I wanted something more custom than the regular old generic ones, and the beautiful ones I can fnd are outrageously priced.
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Operating in the field
This was actually a 'test' setup prior to my motorcycle trip to the Arctic Ocean. As you can see, I was testing my electric fence to, hopefully, keep grizzly and polar bears at bay (it works). Behind the tent you can see the mast for my antenna and right next to me is the battery pack / radio combo. All this, and the tent, on the bike you see in the 'garage'!
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A well produced map (ICOM) showing both the ITU and the CQ DX Zones of the world.
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A question that may remain unanswered. I direct it mostly at CW ops because we use Q-codes more than talkers. QRI?? Depending on the source of your definition, it broadly asks the question: "How is the tone of my transmission"? The answers I have found seem to agree that 1=Good, 2=Variable and 3=Bad. In every other evaluation scale in ham radio, the higher the number, the better, not the worse. 5/9 means what it means; it's better than 2/6. So why is QRI in reverse order? Anyone have any idea?
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ARRL Insurance Program
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While our capabilities are wide-ranging, you will find that the approach in all corners of Risk Strategies is similar. We are a passionate advocate for our client's needs ... consultative, client focused, always bringing to the table a keen financial perspective, grounded in the economics of risk.

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The Radio Club of America
Uniquely, RCA brings under one umbrella professionals from every segment of the wireless industry, including:  antennas, broadband, broadcasting, cellular, consumer, distribution, education, legal/regulatory, manufacturing, marketing/sales, microwave, military, patents, public safety, satellites, semiconductors, transportation, and towers.  As a result, synergistic relationships are created across industry lines. RCA’s Mission: “The promotion of cooperation among those interested in scientific investigation in the art of Radio Communication.”
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One day activation to IOTA EU-101 / OHFF-0846 Kvarken Archipelago 13.5.2021
Annoucement of activity:
ON AIR from Iota EU-101 island, OHFF-0846 flora&fauna area tomorrow.
Callsign: OH6V (operated by me and OH6EZU)
Starting time: 0900 UTC.
Bands: 80-6m
Modes: SSB, Data (FT8/4)

Battery powered activation so ON AIR as far the battery keeps going.
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Cube 2M antenna
Got the plans in QST. Honestly works like a charm. Good omni antenna and I could swear, with gain. I know, not likely, but it gets me to a repeater I could not make with my j-pole.
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FCC Part 97
This is a link to the new US Government eCFR site which includes Title 47, Part 97, which concerns the Amateur Radio service. The main link points to the full text. This link points to the Table of Contents.
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Ham Census is born
Would amateur radio operators engage? Would they give up ±45 minutes of their day to answer over 200 questions about our passion? We were not alone, did it make sense to launch another? And we were told, by a very influential, well-known amateur radio business person, that we would likely fail because there was no way that amateur radio operators would give up that much time to answer that many questions, if there was no reward at the end. Guess what, it's here, it's getting great traffic, hams are answering the questions, and the data is amazing. As expected, some of the questions are providing anticipated results. For instance, no surprise, most hams are transmitting HF at 100W. Duh, most of today's transceivers have a 100W output so it's not wonder. But then there are questions about RFI, band usage, and interference that were surprising. For instance, 72.1% of operators do some kind of operating (D-Star, etc) using the internet. Another surprising one was the number of operators who have four or more HTs. 48% of operators who took the Census said they had at least four HTs. 15.1% said that they had over 6 HTs!

As I write, the Census is in its early days but if early response is indicative, Ham Census may become a reference tool for all those wanting to know how the practice of amateur radio is faring worldwide. To date, we have responses from 24 countries. Our goal is 150!
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Are manufacturers supporting gear?
Quote from Ham Census participant:

Do you agree? Are manufacturers putting out equipment but not providing sufficient support.

Another participant agreed:

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KF7P Metalwerks
Your one stop shop for grounding/bonding, lightning protection, tower equipment, and custom made entry panels.
  • 1 reply

KB6NU No Nonsense Study Guides
In 2005, I was cooling my heels at the public-information table at our club’s Field Day site, when up walked Bruce, W8BBS. In his hand, he had a copy of his Tech license exam study guide. What he had done was take each question in the question pool, reworded them as statements, and then reorganized them into paragraphs, adding text where appropriate to tie it all together and help it read more like a book.

We talked about how several folks had successfully used the study guide to get their licenses and how much they seemed to like his approach. Then, we talked about how he might get the word out so that more people could use his study guide. After quickly paging through the study guide, I volunteered to post it on our club’s website.

In 2006, Bruce was unable to update his study guide, so he gave me permission to to do it. That version was the first issue of the No-Nonsense, Technician-Class Study Guide. In 2007, I produced the first No-Nonsense General Class Study Guide. In 2012, after much coaxing, I came out with the No-Nonsense Extra Class License Study Guide. All three study guides have been updated as time has gone on and are current with the latest question pools.

In additions, all three of these study guides are now available as PDF files, Kindle files, and ePub files.  I planned to also produce  iPhone and iPad versions, but I can’t seem to get Apple to straighten out my iTunes developer account. 😞 You can certainly purchase the Kindle version, though, and read it on the iPhone or iPad with the Kindle app.

I can honestly say that I have helped thousands of people get their amateur radio licenses. If you are one of them, thanks for downloading or purchasing one of my study guides.
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Hamshack Hotline
Hamshack Hotline (HH) is a FREE dedicated voip telecom service for the Ham Radio community.  Typically, phones are established in hamshacks, EOCs, Clubs & club members, ARES, and other Ham related areas and functions.  It is not the intention of HH to replace traffic carried over radio in an emergency or other tactical operation, but rather to augment it, by offloading managerial tactical operations and providing a full duplex path for such communications when spectrum is occupied, conditions diminished, or otherwise unavailable.   HH also supports FAXing of information (with appropriate equipment) which allows tactical offices to share documents & data between tactical locations.   In a non-tactical use, HH is an effective resource for off-air troubleshooting when you need to coordinate a troubleshoot of a radio circuit off-air and between multiple SMEs.   In addition to all this, conference bridges on the HH network allow large groups of Hams to coordinate & meet in real time anywhere in the world.

Getting on board HH is easy!  Just acquire a supported SIP capable phone (our network prefers to register hardware phones first), and open a ticket once you have your phone.  If you have one of the phones on HH Supported Endpoints 1-7-19, then also include a picture of the Phone’s MAC address for super easy provisioning.  Before joining HH, please read and understand our HH Covenant3 If you have any questions, our FAQ’s in knowledge base area on our help desk may help, if not – feel free to open a ticket on our help desk.

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IARU Region 2 Bandplan
The three IARU regional organizations develop band plans to offer guidance to radio amateurs on how the different operating interests and modes of emission can be best accommodated in the limited spectrum available. Observing band plans is good amateur operating practice. In most cases observance is voluntary although some administrations incorporate the band plan for their egion into national regulations. Also, many contest sponsors require that competitors adhere to band plans.

To the extent possible, the IARU R2 band plan is harmonized this with those of the other regions. It is suggested that Member Societies, in coordination with the authorities, incorporate it in their regulations and promote it widely with their radio amateur communities. Of course, if a band plan conflicts with national regulations the national regulations must be observed.
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