Archive for October, 2009

50 MHz sprint at 6pm central/2300 utc Sat. night Oct 24th

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

     One last reminder to make time for the 6m Fall Sprint tomorrow night, from 6-10pm central time or 2300-0300 utc time.    I will be on, looking for contacts in all directions.    Like the 2 meter sprint last month, I’m looking for good participation in this one.  

     http://www.svhfs.org/fall_sprint_rules_2009.pdf   is the link to the rules.

146.43 FM Net Report from Last Night — 13 check-ins

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

     Had cold rain last night, and a slow start to the FM net.   By about 9pm, we’d taken 13 check-ins, and had a good time.   This net now starts at 8:00pm central/0100 utc. 

     We heard from:
     KC9KPV and KM4G Germantown.  WB9WHO, KC9PQF, KD9LEH, W9AOL, WB9TFH, KA9OFA, AB9UA and KB9TNY all in the Milwaukee area.  K9FI in Brookfield and KX9M in Sussex.   The DX award (such as it was in poor conditions) went to N9HR Tom in Ixonia, Jefferson Co.   Tom’s got a nice signal.   Only 20w out, but an 8 el vert. beam up 60′ gave him an S9 signal on a night where many were S5 or lower. 

    

    KC9KPV has  been looking for more DX-type activity from MI, IN and IL with his vertical beam up high the past 3 weeks.   He’s doing this on 146.43 from 7:30-8pm central, or 0030-0100 utc.   He looks MI at the start, and then slowly rotates toward IN and later ILL.    This is the third week where he hasn’t raised anyone.  
    I’m sending out a bunch of email so it’s publicized.   I’m asking any readers from those states to help get this started.   Either check-in with KC9KPV yourself, or tell your club or buddies about this.   We’re looking for FM stations in Lower MI, N IND and N and NC ILL to look toward the NW side of Milwaukee from 0030-0100 on 146.43 every Thursday night.
     Of course, you’re also welcome to check in at or after 0100 utc with me.   It’s just that KC9KPV has the gain.   My antenna on 146 FM is omni-only.

144 SSB Net Reports from Wednesday

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

    WB9LYH called the 144.240 net from EN54cl and bagged at least 24 check-ins.   Mind you, this was with steady rain and very flat conditions.   With this net, WB9LYH starts out looking south at 7:15pm central/0015 utc thru WI and ILL, and he then moves his beam clockwise.   We encourage everyone to use the chat at www.on4kst.com because it shows you who all is logged in and ready to play radio.   I also can update everyone on where net control is looking, and who net control is hearing.  

     Besides getting at least 24 check-ins, it was great to see 25 guys drop by in the chat.   This idea is taking hold, and the more that use it, the more activity will grow on 2 meters.   Not just on the net freq. but also with stations working each other, and using the chat for coordination.    WB9LYH and I both encourage net check-ins to QSY down from the net freq. and work each other.   Swing your beams around and enjoy the activity that’s been stirred up. 
     If we can end get dozens of guys in multiple states in the www.on4kst.com chat on net nights, the 144 band could be packed.    It helps a lot if you spread the word to everyone you can think of in a wide area.   WB9LYH has 300-400 mile range to decent stations in flat conditions.   I hear it every week. 

     Here’s who I heard WB9LYH work:   W9RWS and N9LOH EN52.  W0FAY, N0RWR and KA0OKM all EN42.   N0IRS EM29; K0TPP, N0WC and KC0EOC EM48.   Very good to see St. Louis area coming on board.  
    W9RPM and WV9E  EN43;  KA0PQW EN33; WB0YWW and KG0SJ EN22.  K0KFC and K0SIX EN35; N9KOR and K9MU EN44; WB0DBQ EN46; W9GA EN53.   To Mark’s east and southeast, he had:  K8IHY EN72; KD8CQC EN73; N9YK EN71 and KB9RDS EM79.
     I know KX8XX EN74 and KC8MHK EN72 were also trying to check in; not sure if they made it. 

     I had the 144.250 Badger Contesters net at 8:30/0130utc.    With this net, I start out looking south thru Milwaukee and Chicago, and then I swing clockwise, starting about 8:45.    I ended up with 13 check-ins. 
    W9GA, KC9KPV, KC9NZR and WB9TFH from EN53.   K9KHW EN63; K8IHY and KC8MHK EN73; N0RWR and KA0OKM EN42; WB9LYH EN54; K9MU EN44 and N8WNA EN82.  
    EDIT — Sat. morning the 24th –     Forgot that I also heard from W0ANH up in EN47.    This was an odd Q.   I was pointed SSW, looking thru IL and into E MO, and I hear someone light.   It was definitely W0ANH; heard the EN47.   So I swing my beam up toward him immediately, figuring he’ll be super-strong.    In fact, he was lighter copy when I was peaked on him.    So that was a mystery (maybe a meteor burn peaked me up while I was looking SSW?).

146.43 FM Net *ON* 8pm/0100 start for locals — KC9KPV calls MI/IN/IL with his beam from 7:30-8pm (0030-0100)

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

    The 146.43 FM simplex net is on as usual, but with a new start time of 8pm central, 0100 utc.  
    The newer twist is that KC9KPV Randy in EN53, just 15 miles NW of Milwaukee is trying to raise some DX.   He’s trying  this before the start of the “regular” net.   At 7:30pm central/8:30pm eastern/0030 utc, KC9KPV starts looking into MI with his vertical beam.   He then swings toward IN and then N ILL by 8pm central.   This is to find more FM’ers farther away.    Please spread the word about this.   Guys well into MI/IN and ILL may hear Randy. 

     At 8pm, I then start calling with my omni up 90′.   DX is encouraged to try for either net; locals are welcome to use the 8pm net.

Another great 144 net night 23 check-ins with WB9LYH on 144.240 and 12 check-ins with me on 144.250

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

   I’ll do a full update tomorrow morning, but for now you can enjoy the headlines.

   Remember to get on Sat. night for the 6 meter sprint.   Starts 2300Z or 6pm central, and ends 0300Z or 10pm central.   Spread the word.

144.240 and 144.250 nets *ON* tonight — Make time for the 6m sprint Sat. night, 2300-0300Z

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

    222 Tuesday was fun last night.   I was able to follow along with the chat at www.on4kst.com.   It was very cool to see WB4NKM in EM87, work KC8QAE EN91 and N8WNA EN82 via the chat.    It took a little time for them to all complete, but N8WNA was very happy for the new grid — he only needs 4 more for VUCC on 222.     
    KC8QAE said there was good activity in/near Ohio on both 222 SSB and 223.5 FM last night.   That’s great to hear.  The whole idea about 222 Tuesdays is to keep expanding, so good going to those out east of me.  
    N9NFB EN53 Waukesha and myself got on 223.5 FM and had a nice Q.    Not sure if anyone else got on 223.5 FM locally.   I called there several times between 8-9pm, and didn’t raise anyone else.   We’ll keep working on this. 

    So let’s switch gears to tonight’s 144 nets.   
    The early 144.250 net I was running for MI/OH/IN for a few months is permanently *OFF*.   We now have 2 nets that cover those areas, so we’re simplifying.    Many of the MI/OH/IN guys are using these nets, so thanks for your interest.   Keep spreading the word about these nets, and steer VHF’ers toward this website.   There are so many VHF’ers out there, but we’re isolated and a lot of times, guys/gals just don’t know their options.   The more you talk things up, the more we’ll increase on-air activity.  

    The 144.240 net every Wed. is called by WB9LYH in EN54cl, middle of WI.   This runs from 0015-0130 utc.   Stacked 17B2′s, fantastic QTH and 500 watts out.   He gets out a LONG ways, so if you’re within 300-500 miles of WI, I’d keep an ear tuned our way on Wed. nights.    WB9LYH starts out looking south thru WI into IL at 0015, and then swings his beams clockwise, eventually covering a full 360. 
    The best way to keep track of where net control is pointing, and who all has checked in is to join the fun chat at www.on4kst.com.   I’m there, posting updates on net nights, and it also helps stir up activity on other frequencies, away from the net.   Give it a try, and I think you’ll see the advantages.    The dozens of European ops who enjoy this chat are mostly asleep during our evenings so we pretty much have the room to ourselves.   

    I call the Badger Contesters net on 144.250 starting at 0130.   All are welcome.   Any net I”m involved with is always looking for check-ins across a wide area.    I also start out looking south toward Milwaukee and Chicago, and then I swing the beams clockwise, also covering a full 360.   

    There is a chance that WB9LYH might have a SWR problem if it’s raining on him tonight.   If that’s the case, I’ll pick up his 144.240 net, just like I did in the past.

    REMINDER — Make some time this Sat. evening for the 50 MHz Fall Sprint.   We had very strong participation for the 144 sprint on Sept. 21st, so I expect this one will be busy, too.   I will be on Sat. evening, looking for contacts in all directions.   Because internet spotting is *allowed* with the sprints, I will also be on www.on4kst.com chat Sat. night.   Seven simple steps for getting signed up are at this post:   http://kc9bqa.com/?p=1072    On Sat. night, I will be in the 50 MHz IARU Region 2 chat room.    You will see dozens, or maybe a few hundred 6m chatters on Sat. night.    On Wed. nights, I’m in the 144/432 MHz chat room.

This Week’s Events — Monday 10am central Update

Monday, October 19th, 2009

    I’m pleased to report that daily visitors here are up about 50% this month.   Even on the days where I don’t update, I’m gettting  60-80 visitors, which is a great thing.    The busier days (net announcements and net reports) have 100-130 visitors.    

    Promoting V/UHF doesn’t work unless hams  a) listen and b) get on the air.     So spread the word and continue to get on the air.    2009 has seen great improvement and 2010 will be even better.   There are still plenty of V/UHF’ers out there, but we need to stay active and connected. 

    This week’s schedule is:
    TONIGHT:   N0PB’s very strong net on 144.250 from EM39, N Central MO.   Phil starts out with his stacked Big Wheel omnis from 7:45-8:00pm or 0045/0100 utc.   At 0100, he switches to the beam and starts out looking south, then east at 0115, north at 0130, west at 0145 and back to south at 0200.   N0PB’s been doing this net for years, and has a big following.   Imagine most of you know about this net already.  
    Also tonight:   N4PZ in EN52gb, just SW of Rockford, IL hosts 432.100 activity at 0100 utc.   He may change back to 0000 utc for the winter, so stay on your toes.   Steve’s got a very big signal on 432, and when he peaks up on you, you should hear it.   Some of the guys there QSY to 432.110 to work each other.  

    TUESDAY:   222 Tuesday continues.   This is a Midwest and Nationwide effort to get signals on 222 every Tuesday.   Time is roughly 0000-0300Z.   Frequency is 222.100 and spread out a bit if it gets busy.    No net control, no single focus of activity.   Get on, call CQ, swing your beams everywhere.   TALK IT UP IN YOUR AREA.   (Please :)
    More 222 Tuesday info is here:  http://kc9bqa.com/?p=1134
    We’re asking stations to join this real-time chat to graphically see everyone who is participating.   The chat is free, no-strings-attached and it’s the same chat hundreds of 6m DX’ers have been using for years.   It’s time to put it to use on other bands.   Details are at:   http://kc9bqa.com/?p=1072
    The word is also going out that 223.5 FM activity is welcome and encouraged.   A number of hams have emailed asking about the FM portion of 223.    I say go right ahead, the water’s fine.   I’ll be listening some to 223.5FM in my area, and sending out lots of email to my local clubs and contacts.   You do the same, and we’ll get a good turnout.  

    WEDNESDAY:   We’ll have our two 144 SSB nets called from WI.  
    1)   144.240 from 0015-0130 utc.   WB9LYH EN54cl is net control, with stacked 17 B2′s and 500 watts.   His QTH was an old AT&T tower site, so this is the easiest EN54 you can work.  
    2)   144.250 from 0130-0230 or so.   I am net control from EN63ao, or 40 miles north of Milwaukee.   Good yagis up high and about 130 watts.    
    Everyone in a wide area is invited to listen along and say hello to these nets.   Only purpose is to stir up more activity on V/UHF.   Feel free to QSY down from the net freqs. and work other stations directly.   Far better to have multiple QSO’s on different freqs.   Use the www.on4kst.com chat for better coordination of the activity.   

     THURSDAY:   146.43 FM simplex net at 0130 from the Milwaukee area.   This is more local, but we do look into MI/IN/IL now with KC9KPV’s vertical beam, from 0100-0130utc.   If you enjoy a little DX on FM, then point toward KC9KPV in EN53, 15 miles NW of Milwaukee.   I call the regular portion of this net at 0130, with my omni up 90′.  
     ALSO EVERY THURSDAY:   144.220 SSB net at 0000 utc, hosted by N9JBW John, EN61 south side of Chicago.   This net has been on for many years and also has good participation.   Always look John’s way if you want to play 2 meter SSB on a Thursday. 

    SATURDAY:   6 meter Fall Sprint.   From 2300-0300utc time.   Make some time to play on 6 meters Saturday night.  I will be on and look forward to working many of you.   Link to the fall sprint rules and info:  http://www.svhfs.org/fall_sprint_rules_2009.pdf   In fact, I’m going to make this a separate post so it doesn’t get lost at the bottom of this one.

146.43 FM net — 10 check-ins on a rainy night —- Also, 222 Tuesdays will include 223.5 FM Mode, starting next week.

Friday, October 16th, 2009

    After 10 minutes of the net we only had 4 check-ins, but as time went by, more kept showing up.   Had a nice group tonight, signals were OK considering the cold rain and 37 degrees.
    KC9KPV Germantown, 50 over S9;  KM4G  Germantown, 20 over;  WB9WHO Milwaukee, S7;  N9NFB Waukesha, S3;  KD9LEH Dave, Brown Deer, S2 –   Dave’s first time on the net and good to hear him.   W9GA, S5;  WB9TFH, S3;  KC9NZR, 40 over avg. from the mobile; KG9FC Milwaukee, S5;  KD9TZ Ada (N Sheboygan Co.) 60 over. 

    Had some interesting chit-chat tonight.   I was fascinated with the steady rain that radar shows is coming in off Lake Michigan.   Pretty unusual occurrence.   I’m a weather geek; always have been. 

    On a more radio-related note, I’d like to pass along a few things.
    1)   KD9TZ told us about a 160m net that he is net control for on Thursdays.    This net runs 365 days a year, at 0000utc, regardless of season.   It’s on 1895 KHz, and they had 35 check-ins tonight across the USA.   KD9TZ Mike invites anyone with privileges for 160m to say hello.    If I ever get on an HF band someday, 160m will probably be it.    EDIT:   I Googled this net and found a pair of websites:   http://www.wb8sqj.com/en160/index.html  and http://k9zw.wordpress.com/2008/04/15/every-night-160-meter-group-1895-year-round/

    2)   I’ll talk more about this next week, but start putting the word out locally that 222 Tuesdays will ALSO INCLUDE 223.5 MHZ — FM MODE.   We’re going to encourage those with 1.25cm FM to get the band active, every Tuesday night.  
           N9NFB, KD9LEH, myself and probably a few others should be on 223.5 FM next Tuesday, starting at 7pm or so.   I will still be on 222.100 SSB plenty, because that’s where my power and range is, but I will try to say hello on 223.5FM as well.    This is not a net, but a general activity period.   Gotta motivate yourself for this one, and spread the word with the FM guys you know.   I will send out email, but word of mouth is probably more effective.

146.43 FM Net *ON* tonight — new start 8:00pm/0100utc

Thursday, October 15th, 2009

    Please note the new start time for this net.   It’s a permanent change.

    I will be in the www.on4kst.com 144/432 chat tonight.   Hope to see some of you there.   The 7 simple steps for joining this chat are at:   http://kc9bqa.com/?p=1072

    Everyone in MI, IN and IL, here’s a heads up.    Randy KC9KPV in EN53, just 15 miles NW of Milwaukee is looking for contacts with his vertical beam up high.   On FM, I am omni-only.   KC9KPV can point and we’re going to try and work more MI, IN and IL guys/gals into the net.

    Here’s how it works:   I call the regular net with my omni up 90′ at 8pm/0100utc.   But the half hour before that, starting at 7:30pm/0030utc, KC9KPV looks first at MI; second at IN; and third at IL.   He’s calling CQ with the beam, trying to find a little DX.  

    How you can help is by pointing toward KC9KPV and saying hello.   You can also help by spreading the word to anyone you know who enjoys some simplex work on FM.

    All are welcome to drop by.   We are also fine with stations checking into both nets, no worries.   If you can’t get in until later on, that’s no problem.   Say hello when you can — drop your call in.  Late check-ins are fine, and there’s often ragchewing after about 0145/0200.

Last night’s 144 SSB net reports — wonderful time

Thursday, October 15th, 2009

   Everything was clicking last night, even with flat band conditions.

    We had lots of participation within 400 miles of WI, and plenty of good chatters on www.on4kst.com 144/432 chat page.    Really helps to be logged in there because you can keep better track of where net control is pointing, who is all checking in, and it also helps coordinate QSY’ing off the net freq. to work other guys directly.  
   
    It turns out WB9LYH worked at least 26 stations last night.   WHEW!   Here goes:  W0FAY, KA0OKM, N0RWR, KA9IVP all EN42.   WB0YWW, N0DQS and KG0SJ  EN22.   N0IRS EM29.   KC0MIA in EM28 heard net control at times on an indoor attic antenna!   WB0MCO EN40; N0PB EM39; WV9E EN43; N6ORS EN53; W9RWS EN52.   Moving to WB9LYH’s west and northwest, he had:  K9MU EN44; K0SIX EN35; W9JN EN54; and later on, W0ANH EN47 and VE3KRP EN58 — Thunder Bay, ONT. 
    Nobody was heard from U.P. of MI, so then Mark started working stations off to his east and southeast:   K9KHW and KC9BQA EN63; N8WNA, K8NWD, K8VFV all EN82; WD9DSN EN71; KC8QAE EN91 and KB9RDS EM69.  

    Honestly, conditions weren’t very good.   This goes to show what you can do for a dead band if you get lots of stations on the air.  

     I had 18 check-ins to the 144.250 Badger Contesters net at 8:30pm/0130utc.  
    KC9KPV  EN53; K9KHW EN63; WB9TFH EN53; W9DDH EN52; W0FAY, N0RWR, KA0OKM all EN42.   NT9E EN52; KB9BJH EN53 — Craig’s a new check-in and good to hear him.  W9JN EN54; WV9E EN43; K9MU EN44; KB5ZJU EN63; W8LON EN64; K8NWD and N8WNA EN82; N9JBW EN61; N9NDP EN62.  

    35 unique callsigns and 22 grid squares worked last night with these nets.   Beautiful.  :)