12 Check-Ins to The 144.240 Net Last Night

12:45pm Thursday

144.240 net control WB9LYH reported that propagation was good last night.  Check-ins were:  K9ILU and N9JBW EN61;  KC9VHD and AB9QH EN62;  N9IYV and KB9PSE EN52;  N9YK EN71;  NG9K and N9RXM EN41;  KA9DVX EN51; and WB0SWQ and WA9BNZ EN40.

We finally have high pressure overhead that isn’t moving much.  Extended periods of stable weather often mean improved band conditions.  VHF/UHF’ers need to get on the air during this stretch and call CQ, and start some activity; see who’s out there.  Mornings and evenings (esp. toward and after dark) would tend to have the best conditions.  Spin the beams, call around, keep the airwaves alive.

WB9LYH expects to be on for the next several Wednesdays.  The 144.240 net is called every Wed. night at 8pm central/9pm eastern.  Net control WB9LYH is located in EN54cl, which is Central WI, near WI Rapids or about 1.5 hours west of Green Bay, WI.  Mark has a big signal and enjoys pushing the propagation limits.  Please let VHF’ers in a very wide radius know that we’re on the air on Wed. nights.

From central WI, WB9LYH starts out looking NE, E and SE.  Eastern time zone is always targeted first with the 144.240 Wed. net.  From there, Mark starts edging S, then SW, W, NW and N to finish.  All licensed amateurs are welcome; the net is informal and the purpose is to increase activity on 2 meter SSB.  We always appreciate you helping to spread the word and doing  your part to make the SSB/CW portions of the VHF/UHF bands more active.

RIP Bob — WB0YWW

3:45pm Saturday

Very sorry to report that WB0YWW became a silent key early this month.  Bob had been battling cancer for several years.

When I was actively running the 144.240 net (years back), I always smiled when I heard from Bob.  He just had a way about him and while I was never able to eyeball with him, I sure enjoyed his personality on the radio.   I saw in an obituary that he enjoyed going out and watching storms.  I wish we had talked about that;  I love doing that too.     Bob was one of our earliest, most frequent and loyal check-ins.  Time on the radio was more fun with him around.
My sympathies to his wife, family and loved ones.

 

144.240 Net Reports From 4/13/16 to 5/11/16

3pm Saturday

The last net report I posted was back on 4/7.  In this post, there will be net reports for 4/13, 4/20, 4/27, 5/4 and 5/11.

Back on April 13th, there were 10 check-ins to the 144.240 net:  K9ILU, KD9BGY, KC9RIO, N9JBW, K9CCL and N9IYV EN61;  N9YK EN71;  WA9BNZ and WB0SWQ EN40 and KB9PSE EN52.

On April 20th, there were 9 check-ins:  K9ILU, N9IYV and KD9BGY EN61;  WB8LNG EM79;  AB9QH EN62;  KB9PSE EN52;  W9BBP EN40;  N9XJE EN53 and N9XRM EN41.   Want to welcome N9XJE to the net; always grateful for new signals on 2m SSB.

On April 27th, there were 11 check-ins:  KG9B EN54;  K9ILU, KC9RIO and KD9BGY EN61;  WB8LNG EM79;  KY9E EN52;  NG9K and N9RXM EN41;  WB0SWQ and W9BBP EN40;  and KG0SJ EN22.   Also want to welcome KG9B to the net.  Nice to hear you on 2 meter SSB.  That’s 2 new ones from central WI in 2 weeks.

On May 4th, there were 12 check-ins:  N9JBW, K9ILU, KA8BTW, KD9BGY and KC9RIO EN61;  AB9QH EN62;  WB8LNG EM79;  N9RXM EN41;  W9BBP, WA9BNZ and WB0SWQ EN40;  and KG0SJ EN22.

Last Wed., May 11th, there were 13 check-ins to the 144.240 net.  Net control WB9LYH reported good propagation to the east.  Check-ins were:  AC8GD and KC8ZJL EN71;  WB8LNG EM79;  K9ILU, KC9RIO and KD9BGH EN61;  KB9PSE EN52;  N9RXM EN41;  WB0SWQ, W9BBP and WA9BNZ EN40;  WB9FBO EN52 and KA8FFM EN56 in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
Net control WB9LYH also noted that a WB4 called briefly, but Mark could not copy the rest.  Mark said there was the best propagation to the southeast that he has heard for a while.
Also want to welcome WB9FBO to the net.  That’s 3 new calls in the last 5 weeks.  Those of you who are helping us spread the word — THANK YOU.

OK, ALL CAUGHT UP ON THE NET REPORTS for the last 5 weeks.  Finally.

Friendly reminder:  The 144.240 net is called every Wed. at 8pm central/9pm eastern by WB9LYH in EN54cl.  That’s central WI, near WI Rapids, or about 1.5 hours west of Green Bay, WI.   We have been calling the 144.240 net since June of 2008.  If  you’re into history, our net story is here:  http://kc9bqa.com/?p=5363
Net control WB9LYH has a big signal.  Stacked 17B2 yagis and a ridgetop QTH and 500 watts.  You don’t need all that to talk a few hundred miles on 2 meter SSB, but it surely helps!  Mark can routinely work other well-equipped stations out to 400 miles — under normal band conditions.  With summer out there somewhere (had snowshowers and 39 degrees today on MAY 14th!) we will have nights with enhanced propagation.  Please let VHF’ers in a very wide area know that WB9LYH is there on Wed. nights, and he loves to push the propagation limits.  Just like with the mystery WB4 station who almost made it in on May 11th.

All licensed amateurs are welcome to the 144.240 net.  We appreciate local and DX check-ins, we appreciate regulars and those who just drop by from time to time.  The net is informal and the purpose is to create more activity on 2 meter SSB.  We always encourage you to help spread the word and get more signals on the air.

WB9LYH expects to be on next Wed., May 18th.  He starts the net by looking northeast, east and southeast.  Eastern time zone is always targeted first with this net (again, start time is 8pm central/9pm eastern)  By about 8:10-8:15 central, WB9LYH is edging south, looking into IN, IL and southern WI.  Then he starts looking SW into MO, IA and KS.  Eventually he looks W, NW and N, from (roughly) 8:20-8:45pm.  All times approximate, never know which direction might have more activity.

My Towers, Yagis and Coax are Sold — IC-575H and SB-230 Are Still Available

7:30pm Tuesday

Happy to report that I sold my towers, yagis and coax this weekend.  That means my station is about 2/3rds liquidated.   What remains are odds and ends that I’m not ready to catalog at this time.   I will get my act together by next month.   The biggest items will be rotors, but they are still up on the towers so that will take some time, too.  Don’t worry, when I’m ready to sell accessories, I will make a post and publicize things via various email lists.

***One thing that is for sale right now — I have a well-used, but perfectly operational, Icom IC-575H, mated to a Heathkit SB-230 that puts out about 220-230 watts, max.  You can get on 6 and 10 meters just in time for summer E skip season, for the low price of $450.***   Quite honestly, I should charge more, but I don’t mind this going to a good home.   You get a discount because the dial lamp is out — big deal.  I can see the freq. display just fine without the dial lamp.
I am not going to ship this combo.  When I sold most of my rigs and amps and transverters back in the spring of 2014, I was glad to drive up to 100-150 miles to either deliver or meet hams halfway.  If you are interested in this combo, email me.  My everyday email is good at www.qrz.com or if you can’t log in there you can also use wi.todd (AT) yahoo.com.   If you know of someone who wants to get on The Magic Band with a quality rig and an amp that puts out at least 200 watts, tell them to jump on this deal.

Made Multiple New Posts This Weekend.

8am Thur.

If you haven’t visited kc9bqa.com in a while, be aware that I made many new posts this past weekend.  Scroll down this “front page” and make sure you catch all the headlines.   Several important events that VHF’ers will want to be on top of.

1)   Central States VHF Society has their 50th annual conference from July 28-31 in Rochester, MN.
2)  August UHF Contest is *ON*
3)  Spring VHF and up Sprints start Monday night, April 11th, from 7-11pm in your local time zone.    Spread the word and get on the air for the Spring VHF and up Sprints.
4)  I posted a listing of known VHF/UHF clubs in WI and adjacent states that you can join or follow.

Detailed info about these topics are right down the front page here at kc9bqa.com.  You are free to share the info here with your clubs, ham buddies, etc.

14 Check-Ins to Last Night’s 144.240 Net

7:45am  Thur.

WITH THE 144.240 NET last night, net control WB9LYH in EN54cl reported “the band is getting better”.  Glad the band conditions are getting better, because the weather sure isn’t!   This morning I have 33F and a dusting of snow (40 miles N of Milwaukee), with possible shoveling snow tomorrow.  Supposed to warm up about a week from now.  That would be welcome.

Here’s the check-in list from last night:  K9ILU, N9IYV, KD8BGY, KC9RIO, N9JBW and K9CCL EN61;  WB8LNG EM79;  KY9E EN52;  WB0SWQ EN40;  KC9OVD, N9RXM and NG9K EN41;  KG0SJ EN22 and KA9VDU EN53.

Net control WB9LYH in EN54cl, central WI, expects to be available every Wed. night in April.

If you like short stories, you’re done.  🙂  If you don’t visit kc9bqa.com often or want more info, please read on:

The 144.240 net is called every Wed. at 8pm central/9pm eastern.   Net control is WB9LYH in EN54cl, central WI, near WI Rapids.   Antenna pattern from Central WI is NE, E, SE, S, SW, W, NW and N over the next 45-60 minutes.  Eastern time zone is always targeted first.  All licensed hams are welcome.  The net is informal and the purpose is to increase activity on 2m SSB.

WB9LYH has a very big signal and loves pushing the propagation limits.  His typical range on 2m SSB, with normal band conditions is 300-500 miles.  But on nights with band enhancement, contacts beyond 500 miles are possible *IF* the stations are out there, giving it a try.  DX is always welcome to with the 144.240 net.   Help us spread the word in a very wide circle, especially with warmer weather and better propagation just around the corner.
We really appreciate our net check-ins thru the years, but the recipe for a truly healthy band is to have lots of signals on the airwaves on a daily/nightly basis.  Call your own CQ’s in various directions whenever you can.  So many of us fall into the rut of “just listening”.  Well… if dozens of VHF’ers in many grids and states are all “just listening”, then how many signals are heard??  That’s right, zero.  Then everyone says, “the bands are so dead.”  There’s a remedy for this — Call your own CQ’s — start something.

I want VHF’ers to know there are many fine nets and activity nights, all 7 nights of the week, scattered across the Midwest/Great lakes and Plains.  Three posts here at kc9bqa.com detailing those VHF/UHF nets are dated Oct 13, 15 and 17th, 2013.  Use the “archives” at the right and click on “October 2013” and go from there.   Please spread that VHF/UHF net and activity night info to hams everywhere.

 

We have called the 144.240 Wed. net from WI since June 2008 and our history is here:  http://kc9bqa.com/?p=5363

KC9BQA Towers, Yagis and Feedline For Sale

EDIT, EDIT —  8pm Tuesday, April 19th, 2016
I sold my towers, yagis and coax this weekend.    Please consult a post dated 7:30pm April 20th (guess WordPress uses UTC time) if you need more details.  I will have various accessories and rotors to sell in the next month or two, but I’m not ready to catalog them at this time.  Plus the rotors are still up on the towers and I’m not sure when everything will come down.
IF YOU WANT A USED AND WORKING ICOM IC-575H AND SB-230 AMP FOR A GREAT PRICE OF $450, read the post I’m referencing above and then get in touch with me and we’ll get that deal done.  You have to be within several hours of me, I’m not shipping.

11am Sunday

As mentioned before here at kc9bqa.com, my towers, stacked yagis, along with all phasing lines, harnesses, custom H-frames and feedline are for sale.   It’s not easy for me to put this into print — if you know me personally, you know how passionate I was about V/UHF’ing (especially the contests) from 2004-2012.

If  you are (or know) someone who is looking to get on VHF/UHF in a big way, then I am exactly who you should be talking to.  Feel free to tell your ham friends and steer them to kc9bqa.com.

If you haven’t visited kc9bqa.com in some time and are wondering why I’m off the air, see posts dated March 15, 2014 at kc9bqa.com.  I have a month-by-month “archives” feature on the right of my homepage.

WHAT EXACTLY IS STILL IN THE AIR??

I have two towers — one is 100′ and the other is 70′.  ( I suppose HF’ers might be interested in these towers, too)  Both  towers are Rohn SSV and self-supporting.  No guy wires needed.   The 100′ tower has a wide, robust base and the 70’er is more of a straight stick.
Antennas on the towers are:
28 MHz:  5-element HyGain (bought new and installed June 2011)
144:  Pair 12 el K1FO design
222:  Pair 16 el K1FO
432:  Pair 25 el K1FO
The 144, 222 and 432 yagi pairs were bought new from C3i back in late 2003.
There is a very sturdy custom H-frame that holds the 222 and 432 yagis in perfect balance.

902:  Pair 33 el K1WHS (DirectiveSystems.com)
1296:  Pair 45 el K1WHS
2304:  Single 76 el “blowtorch”
These yagis were bought new and installed in the summer of 2005.
There is also a nice H-frame from Directive Systems that holds and balances the 902/1296 yagis.

All phasing harnesses, power dividers and H-frames are part of the deal, along with two very stout mastpipes in the 15-20′ range.
Besides the towers and yagis, there’s hundreds of feet of coax on those towers.  Rough guess is 400-500′ of 1″ hardline (in 4 separate runs), 250-300′ of 1.5″ hardline (in 4 separate runs) and several hundred feet of 9913.   I also have a spare piece of 1 1/2″ hardline in the shed, guess-timating about 60-70′.   All feedline is also included in the prices below.

 

SO WHAT’S THIS ALL GOING TO COST, TODD?
Because this is the 7th anniversary of kc9bqa.com, I’m knocking 15% off my previous price.  Plus there are bonuses for those who buy all or most of what’s here.  Selling everything piece-by-piece is a last resort for me.  I’m not a real fan of haggling and I have no interest in dealing with pure tire-kickers.

**If you have a sincere interest in all or most of these items, I will gladly talk with you and we can exchange ideas and thoughts.**

The absolute rock-bottom price for both towers, all yagis, all feedlines, phasing harnesses, power dividers, H-frames and 2 very sturdy long mast pipes is $3000.   The terms for achieving that price are:
1)  You buy everything at once and you haul it away, however you care to.
2)  You safely take it all down.
3)  You are an active V/UHF’er who will put this good stuff ON THE AIR.
4)  You are a pleasure to deal with.

While it’s not my first choice, I will certainly talk with buyers who don’t meet all 4 conditions.  Just realize that you won’t get the absolute rock bottom price.

I know that $3000 for two big self-supporting Rohn SSV towers, stacked long yagis on 144, 222, 432, 902 and 1296 MHz, plus single long yagis for 28 and 2304 MHz is a great value.  Plus you get custom-made mastpipes,  stout H-frames to keep everything in the air in balance, phasing harnesses and power dividers, plus individual runs of (used) hardline for each band.  This is a turnkey solution for putting up an award-winning, multi-band VHF/UHF station.  Don’t know of anyone else who is selling something like this.  I wish when I wanted to get back on the air in 2003, I had found a deal like mine!  It would have saved me so much time and money.

Again, the $3000 price above is my absolute rock bottom number for selling *everything at once*  If I start parting stuff out, then the prices will be higher.  Not crazy high, but higher.  I may not end up selling everything to one buyer, but that’s how you get the lowest overall price.  Also, if it turns out I have to use “my guy” to take everything down, which is an option, then I add $1500 to the bottom line price, because it will cost me at least that much for takedown.
If you are interested or have sincere questions, email me, we can exchange phone #’s and possibly find a time when you can visit and inspect everything for yourself.   My everyday email is good at qrz.com.  I also use wi.todd (at) yahoo.com, but I don’t think to check it very often.

**As of April 3, 2016, I have only posted this info to the Badger Contesters email reflector.  Of course, it would be easier for the buyer to be local or semi-local.  Later this week, I will be posting to other Midwest VHF email lists and then I will also make a push to the Central States VHF Society members.  Then after that, I may advertise nationally.  In other words, don’t mess around because someone else may jump in here quickly.**

Two Email Lists VHF/UHF’ers Should Know About

7:30am Sunday

Grateful for the opportunity to make some useful posts the past few days.
When I got the info about the 2016 UHF Contest still being ON, I received it via the VHF email list.
For more info about the VHF email reflector, go here: https://w6yx.stanford.edu/mailman/listinfo/vhf

There’s another email list VHF/UHF’ers need to know about.  It’s the VHF Contesting list and this link http://lists.contesting.com/mailman/listinfo/VHFcontesting explains how to get started and how to view the list archives.
There are several lively discussions at this email list lately.  Visit the archives if you want to know more about many topics related to VHF contesting.  It can be very educational.

The August UHF Contest is ON for 2016

7:30am Sunday

Back on March 23rd, I received some great news in my email, via the VHF email reflector.
The 2016 AUGUST UHF CONTEST IS ON

If you enjoy V/UHF contesting, it’s important you help spread this news to everyone you know who is on 222, 432, 902, 1296 MHz and higher.   Those are some great bands, and the UHF contest is the best time to find activity.
Again, The 2016 AUGUST UHF CONTEST IS ON.

The announcement below is posted in its entirety.

Please save August 6-7 for the 2016 August UHF Contest.

It will be held as scheduled this year, but under new sponsorship

After ARRL announced that it would not sponsor the UHF Contest in 2016, a group of radio amateurs from coast to coast came together to make sure that the contest does occur in 2016.

The sponsoring group includes the leaders of several large VHF-oriented clubs, two volunteers who write contest results articles for QST, the editor of the “World Above 50 MHz” column in QST, two people with extensive computer log-checking expertise, and others who are concerned about the future of contesting on the amateur bands above 222 MHz.

This will be the 39th annual August UHF Contest. We believe continuity is important.  Even a one-year hiatus is not a good idea for a contest that has shown an upswing in logs submitted for several years in a row.

The new sponsors will try very hard to make the 2016 UHF Contest a good one. There will be gavels awarded to the top-scoring clubs plus certificates for all division leaders.  We will try to publish the results promptly and prominently online and in print.  In addition, the Northern Lights Radio Society will again sponsor “Rovermania” and the limited (three-band) rover award–both fixtures of the August contest.

We already have a website to promote the UHF Contest. It includes a history of the UHF Contest and a photo gallery of rovers in five different time zones.
http://augustuhf.org     OR   http://uhfcontest.org  (either domain name will get you there)

See you on the bands above 222 MHz on August 6-7, 2016 (1800z Saturday until 1800z Sunday).

73, Wayne Overbeck, N6NB

KC9BQA adds:  There’s another great email list VHF/UHF’ers need to know about.  It’s the VHF Contesting list and this link http://lists.contesting.com/mailman/listinfo/VHFcontesting explains how to get started and how to view the list archives.
There are several lively discussions at this email list lately.  Visit the archives if you want to know more about many topics related to VHF contesting

 

Listing of VHF/UHF Clubs in or near Wisconsin

7:15am Sunday

As of June 2015, I know of 5 VHF/UHF clubs in and near WI.  When I say “VHF/UHF Club”, I’m talking about clubs where the emphasis is on SSB/CW/Digital modes on bands like 50, 144, 222, 432 MHz, clear on up to microwave bands like 902, 1296, 2304, 3456 MHz, and even into 5 and 10 Gig and beyond.
If you are even a casual VHF’er, but would like your contest scores to go toward a club total, consider joining any of these clubs.  All the info you need to get started is below.

1)  My club is the Badger Contesters.  Their website is at www.badgercontesters.org.  If you are within 175 miles of Oshkosh, WI, you are in the BC circle.  A graphic showing our territory is available at:  http://www.badgercontesters.org/club_area.html  The BC’ers are a low-key, low-stress, no-dues club.  If you want more info, go to the website or contact me.

2)  NLRS stands for Northern Lights Radio Society, which covers MN, and probably adjacent parts of W and NW WI and N IA.  Their website is at www.nlrs.org.

3)  SMC stands for Society of Midwest Contesters, based in IL and parts of adjacent states.  SMC is a very active HF club, with a decent number of V/UHF contesters, too.  Their website is at www.w9smc.com   SMC has done some amazing things, getting their HF contesters to try 6 meters in the June ARRL contest (when sporadic E skip usually opens up 6m across the country)

4)  CVVHF stands for Chippewa Valley VHF and they are pretty much centered on EN44.  I’m sure their territory covers most of NW WI and plenty of the U.P. of MI.  CVVHF’s website is at www.k9cvc.org.

5)  As of late summer, 2014, Michigan is now represented here.  Several motivated guys got together and have created the Michigan VHF-UHF Society or MIVUS.  Their website is at http://mivus.org/  Check them out.

If you enjoy V/UHF contesting, these clubs would like very much for you to join and then submit your contest scores as part of the club’s  aggregate score.

I am not aware of any active V/UHF clubs in IN or IA.  If I’m mistaken, someone set me straight.