Archive for April, 2015

Good Advice I Repeat From Time to Time

Friday, April 24th, 2015

8am  Friday

Many times, hams don’t know where or when to find signals on bands like 144, 222 or 432 MHz.  They get discouraged and give up.  This is a correctable situation.  Spread the word to hams about what is possible on the SSB/CW portions of bands like 50, 144, 222 and 432 MHz.   For more info about many nets and activity nights in a wide area surrounding WI and the Great Lakes, visit posts dated Oct. 13, 15 and 17th, 2013 at

IT’S ALSO WORTH MENTIONING that the best recipe for healthy bands is to call random CQ’s at any old time.  Create your own activity.  It’s so easy to fall into the rut of “just listening”.  If 20 guys are all near their rigs “just listening” and nobody calls CQ, then everyone thinks the band is dead.   CALL CQ, CALL CQ.  Swing the yagis around, call in different directions.  Get something started.

This Week’s 144.240 and 144.252 Net Reports

Friday, April 24th, 2015

7:45am Friday

WB9LYH was back at the mic Wed. night for the 144.240 net.  Mark reported “tough conditions”.  His 9 check-ins were:  K8GDT EN91;  K9CCL, KC9RIO, KA8TBW and KD9BGY EN61;  WD9DCW EN52;  WA9BNZ EN40;  N9RXM and KC9OVD EN41.

WB9LYH expects to be on with the Wed. 144.240 net for April 29th, May 6th and May 13th.  Start time is 8pm central/9pm eastern.   Mark’s QTH is Central WI, near WI Rapids or grid square EN54cl.  Mark’s antenna pattern is NE, then E, SE, S, SW, W, NW and N over the next 45-60 minutes or so.  Depends on how many check-ins there are, so be a little flexible.

On to K8TQK’s Monday night 144.252 net report.  Bob’s in EM89je, which is far south-central OH, near Chillicothe.  K8TQK calls the 144.252 net every Monday at 8:30pm eastern.  Antenna pattern is N, then NE, E, SE, S, SW, W and NW over about the next 45 minutes.  If Bob has a particularly big net, it might run closer to an hour.  Just depends on how each night goes.
K8TQK had 19 check-ins Monday night.  KU8Y EN61;  K8GDT EN91;  W3IP FM19;  NG4C FM16;  VE3ZV EN92;  WD4NMV EM85;  W4VAS, W4LES, W9BN and W4IMD EM84;  W4YZJ EM64;  KA2KQM EM74;  KI4ROF EM55;  N9RXM EN41;  WB0SWQ EN40;  WB8ART and N8XA EM79;  KB8GUE EM89 and KC8VHD EN62.

WB9LYH Calls 144.240 Net @8pm Central/9pm Eastern Tonight

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015

11:45am  Wed.

I emailed WB9LYH to confirm that Mark will be back with the net tonight.  Good news — WB9LYH says he expects to be on tonight, next week and at least the first 2 Weds. in May .

Net starts at 8pm central/9pm eastern.  WB9LYH is in EN54cl, which is Central WI, near WI Rapids.  Pair of long yagis and 500 watts from a great location means he gets out a very long way.  Stop by tonight or any Wed. and hear what’s happening.

Antenna pattern from EN54cl is NE at first, then E, SE, S, SW, W, NW and N over the next 45-60 minutes or so.

144.240 Net Called Tonight by N9XKH in EN52il (WI/IL State Line)

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015

8:15am Wed.

As mentioned in this weekend’s net report, tonight’s 144.240 net will have an alternate net control.

Dennis, N9XKH will kick things off at the usual start time of 8pm central/9pm eastern.   His QTH is EN52il, which is on the WI/IL state line between Madison, WI and Rockford, IL.   I assume Dennis will follow the usual pattern of looking NE and E into MI first, then start sliding east/southeast into OH and IN before turning south and southwest to pick up IL/MO and then KS/IA and then northwest and north to pick up anyone in MN and northern WI or the U.P. of MI.

Get on tonight and see who’s out there.  Give N9XKH some check-ins.

I would plan on WB9LYH being back to call the net on Wed., April 22nd.

This Week’s 144.240 and 144.252 Net Reports

Saturday, April 11th, 2015


WB9LYH reported improved propagation with the 144.240 net on Wed. night.  Mark’s 14 check-ins were:  N6ORS EN53;  WB9SJA EN60;  W8IO EN63;  K8VFV EN82;  K9CCL and KD9BGY EN61;  W8SOL EN71;  N9XKH EN52;   N9NDP EN62;  KB9KLD EM58;  WB0SWQ and WA9BNZ EN40;  KC9OVD EN41 and VE3KRP in EN58, Thunder Bay, ONT.
I know we’ve never had both EM58 and EN58 check into the same net before.  I think that’s fun.  🙂
Also, WB9SJA is a new all-time check-in to this net.  Welcome and thanks for getting on 2m SSB.

N9XKH in EN52il will call the 144.240 net next Wed.  Usual start time of 8pm central/9pm eastern.  N9XKH is Dennis and his QTH is on the WI/IL state line, between Madison and Rockford.  Like WB9LYH, he will look NE to start, then E, SE, S, SW, W, NW and N over the next 40-60 minutes, depending on activity levels.
I will try to post a reminder here at next week, but you can help by spreading the word.

K8TQK had 19 check-ins to his 144.252 net back on Monday night.  They were:  W8SOL EN71;  N8WNA and N8AIA EN82;  VA3HD FN14;  W2UAD FN13;  AC3L/M FN00;  W3IP FM19;  WA4NJP, W4LES, W4IMP and WB4NMV EM84;  K4LY EM85;  N8XA EM79;  KI4ROF EM55;  N9RXM EN41;  KB8GUE EM89;  KD9BGY EN61 and KB3TNZ FN11.

REMINDER —  The Spring VHF and Up Sprints start this Monday night, April 13th, with the 2 meter band.   Runs from 7-11pm in your local time zone.  Full Sprint info is 3 posts below, dated April 1st.

This Week’s 144.240 and 144.252 Net Reports

Thursday, April 2nd, 2015

8:15am  Thur

WB9LYH reported good activity to the east last night with the 144.240 net.  The 12 check-ins were:  W8IO EN63 (MI side);  N8WNA and N8AIA EN82;  KC8ZJL and W8SOL EN71;  K8GDT EN91;  KD9BGY, K9CCL, N9JBW and KC9RIO EN61;  N9NDP EN62 and WA9BNZ EN40.  VE3ZV in EN92 reported hearing WB9LYH (via the real-time ham chat, I presume) but WB9LYH couldn’t hear him.

The 144.240 net is called every Wed. at 8pm central/9pm eastern by WB9LYH in EN54cl, central WI, near WI Rapids.   Mark has stacked 17B2’s (horizontal polarization, per the custom on SSB) and 500 watts from a ridgetop QTH and can easily work out to 300-400+ miles to stations with longer (horizontal) yagis up in the clear.   All licensed amateurs are welcome.  The net is informal and the goal is to promote activity on 2m SSB.  DX is always encouraged to listen along and give it a try.  We never know when there may be a night with band enhancement and those 500-1000 mile surprises pop in.  It’s a real thrill when that happens so help us spread the word in a very wide circle surrounding EN54.
The antenna pattern from EN54 is NE, E, SE, S, SW, W, NW and N over the next 45-60 minutes.  Exact times can’t be pinned down; it depends on activity levels.   Eastern time zone is always targeted first.

There is a chance that WB9LYH could be called away next Wed.  If this happens, and he can find an alternate net control, I will post that info here when I get it.  Either way, plan on the 144.240 net next Wed at the usual time of 8pm central/9pm eastern.

The 144.252 net is called by K8TQK in EM89je, south-central OH every Monday at 8:30pm eastern.  I still publish Bob’s net reports because a few years back, he partnered with us on Wed. nights.  The 144.252 Monday net’s antenna pattern from EM89je is N, NE, E, SE, S, SW, W and NW over the next 45-60 minutes, depending on activity levels.   K8TQK also has a big signal and is always looking for more check-ins in a wide circle surrounding EM89.

K8TQK also had 12 check-ins this week:  N8WNA EN82;  WB8AUK EN80;  W3IP FM19;  KB3TNZ FN11;  K8OY EM88;  K4SAN FM05;  WB4IXU EM86;  WA4NJP, W4LES and W4IMD EM84;  WB8ART EM79 and KB8GUE EM89.

With Spring Here, Time to Repost My For Sale List

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

6:20am  Wed.

I realize it’s April Fool’s Day, but I wouldn’t joke about my station being for sale.

To keep this post short, I refer you to this link from Dec. 13th.

That should get you thinking about buying a first-rate, multi-band VHF/UHF station.

2015 Spring VHF and Up Sprints Start with 144 MHz on April 13th

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

6am  Wed.

Want to repost the Spring VHF and Up Sprint info.
Originally posted this on Feb. 23, but with the 144 MHz sprint only 2 Mondays away, this is a good time to get the ball rolling.

The info below comes from WB8BZK Mike, who’s part of the organizing committee for the 2015 Spring Sprints.  Feel free to distribute this far and wide.  The sprints and contests always need more signals on the air.

The Central States VHF Society is proud to sponsor and announce the dates and times for the 2015 run of the VHF and up Spring Sprints!

144 MHz: Monday, 4/13/15 from 7 – 11 PM local

222 MHz: Tuesday, 4/21/15 from 7 – 11 PM local

432 MHz: Wednesday, 4/29/15 from 7 – 11 PM local

Microwave, 902 MHz and up: Saturday, 5/2/15 from 8 AM – 1 PM local

50 MHz: Saturday, 5/9/15 from 2300Z until 0300Z Sunday, 5/10/15

More information and rules will be posted at:


Kent O’Dell KA2KQM & Mike Metroka WB8BZK
Central States VHF Society Spring Sprint Organizing Committee