Archive for January, 2011

222 Tuesday is ON Every Tuesday

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

  3:50pm Tuesday — Most regular readers here are well aware of 222 Tuesday —  it’s the nationwide activity night for all USA/VE ops on this great band.   If you need more info, click here:   http://kc9bqa.com/?p=3972  
  Please spread this info to anyone who enjoys 222 MHz SSB/CW or 223-225 MHz FM.   222 Tuesday is as good as each individual makes it.   222 Tuesday doesn’t work unless there’s activity.    It also doesn’t work if you’re “just listening”.   If a dozen guys all listen, then nobody hears a thing.   Remember if you find yourself in a QSO on the call freq. of 222.100, to either QSY at least 5-10 kc or give frequent longer pauses for others to make calls.

144.250 and 432.100 Activity Every Monday Night

Monday, January 10th, 2011

   Mondays are great evenings for VHF and UHF in a wide area of the Midwest and Great Lakes.   For full details, click on this link.   http://kc9bqa.com/?p=3855   Both these net controls have great signals and enjoy new check-ins.   I don’t know of any other regular 432 activity in the Midwest, so let’s keep that option alive and well.

Sunday Evening Activity From MN and MI on 6m and 2m (SSB)

Friday, January 7th, 2011

      Here’s the link to the Sunday evening nets:   http://kc9bqa.com/?p=3920  
  
      I like to remind readers about their weekly options.   Scroll back a page or two if you think you’ve missed anything.   I post frequent updates because we get new visitors all the time.    I want VHF/UHF’ers to know where and when they can hear signals.    Who wants to listen to dead air?   The main purpose of this website is to increase VHF/UHF on-air activity at anytime.   Meaning contests, band openings, nets, activity nights or just general “do-it-yourself ” CQ’ing.    If everyone took just 15-30 minutes per week to call CQ in a 360 degree circle, our bands would be hopping.  
   There are far more VHF-capable stations than I ever would have imagined.    Hundreds of veterans are out there, and I know first-hand that newer guys are coming on board every week.   Help spread the word to other hams.   If we all do our part to increase activity, it pays off big-time.    Again, thanks to everyone who is helping.   🙂

Friday and Saturday 2m and 6m SSB Activity

Friday, January 7th, 2011

Click on this link  http://kc9bqa.com/?p=3916   and you will see a Dec. 17th post about nets that previously haven’t been mentioned on this website.

Plenty of Thursday Night Activity, SSB and FM.

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

   I have some new info about on-air 2m activity every Thursday evening.   Scroll down to the Jan 5th posts.   See if you can copy the net out of SE Ohio on 144.250 at 0100Z.

Link To Google Spreadsheet for Posting Your Jan 22-23 Contest Plans

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

    Once again, W0UC has created a Google spreadsheet where you can enter your VHF/UHF contest plans.   These have proved to be popular; it really motivates guys to get on, when they can see there will be plenty of activity.   Whether you’re a rover or fixed station, big gun or little pistol, enter your data and let others know you’ll be contesting. 
  
     One practical note please — These spreadsheets were created with a Midwest/Great Lakes audience in mind.   If you’re within roughly 500 miles of WI and MN, please post your plans.   If you’re well outside this region, consider creating your own spreadsheet.   It would be great to have these for say, New England, the Southeast, the Southern Plains, the Rockies, West Coast, etc.  
 
     The link to the spreadsheet is:  https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0AvU0R8d2qq2DdGdIakRsYlBESS1CSk9IYV9wWEpIanc&hl=en&authkey=COG0o7MP#gid=0

ARRL Jan VHF Sweepstakes are Jan 22-23rd.

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

    The ARRL has all-band VHF/UHF contests 3 times per year.   They’re always in January, June and September.   Outside of major band openings, these are the times when the airwaves are busiest, so enjoy the activity. 

     By all-band, I mean starting on your bread-and-butter bands of 6m and 2m, and going right on up thru 222 and 432 MHz, all the way on up to microwave bands like 902, 1296, 10 GHZ and beyond.    Nearly all VHF contesters have 6m and 2m, and then guys add 432 and/or 222 MHz from there.   Some move even higher up, and you might add 902/903 MHz, 1296, 2304 MHz and perhaps 10 gigahertz, too, which is increasingly popular.   
    Two more contests are the ARRL UHF on the 1st weekend of August, which is on 222, 432 MHz and higher.    A 5th good contest is the CQ WW VHF (6m and 2m only)  in mid-July.  

     Again, in my experience, a contest is when the bands are busiest.   That’s why I love contests; because of the action.   If you are bored with quiet bands, make sure you save plenty of time to play along in the VHF/UHF contests.      

    Visit these links for rules and helpful hints:    http://www.arrl.org/january-vhf-sweepstakes
    Here’s some helpful hints and tips:   http://www.arrl.org/contest-toolbox-tutorials

     See my post directly below for the link to my articles called VHF Contesting School.   Or visit:   http://kc9bqa.com/?p=2641  I wrote those articles aimed at beginner and intermediate VHF/UHF Contesters.   I firmly believe that if 100,000 hams knew what really happens on “our” bands, at least 10-15% would be interested.   The goal is to spread the word as widely as possible.

Link to VHF Contesting School Articles — Pass Them On

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

    The ARRL Jan VHF Sweepstakes is Jan 22-23rd, 2011.   It starts at 1900Z Saturday, Jan 22nd and runs 33 hours until 0400Z on Monday, Jan. 24th.  (which is really Sunday evening)   Operate as much or as little as you like, but get on the air and get your toes wet.     
    Here is a link to a series of articles I’ve written aimed at beginner and intermediate-level contesters.   Feel free to pass these around to all hams. 
    http://kc9bqa.com/?p=2641   
    There’s a lot of info in those articles.   Take your time and enjoy.  I hope it helps. 

     Way too many hams think contests are for big-guns or experts.    On the V/UHF bands, there’s plenty of room for newcomers.   There’s more room to operate, better manners and a more relaxed atmosphere.   We can always use more VHF contesters, believe me.   
     Even if you don’t enjoy contesting, you still want to tune in during contests because of the increased activity, and the possibility of hearing rare grids that aren’t activated at any other time.    You do not “have to be in the contest” to hand out points or put new contacts in your logbook.    Make plans now to be on the air, even if all you have is 6m or 2m.   And get a buddy or two to play along.

1/5/11 Net Report — Even on a Quiet Night, We Hear From SD and KY.

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

      
    KA0KYZ had a late start last night, but still took 10 check-ins on 144.230 from about 0130-0245Z.   I had 14 check-ins on 144.240, and it was a putzy night; I was sort of slow.  If you were out west or up north and waiting, I wasn’t able to turn those directions until about 8:20-8:45pm.  
    Not knowing exactly when we will turn your way is yet another great reason to get on board with the on4kst.com real-time chat for all USA/VE hams on VHF/UHF.   Remember the 7 simple steps for getting signed up to this (free and no obligation) chat are at:   http://kc9bqa.com/?p=3765   The chat is available anytime, and you use it how you care to.   Even if you’re the quiet type, you can still hang out there, and absorb information.   Many are content to mostly lurk in the background.  

     Like I said in the headline, KA0KYZ had a nice surprise with WB0ULX in Huron, SD checking in from EN04.   I was also floored to work AC4VM in Central KY, EM77 (he’s moved, his EM78 address on qrz.com has changed).    
      I thought conditions were poor last night.   I’ll talk more about it later — my notes are out in the shed.
    10 am:   I say conditions were poor last night because N8WNA and KA0KYZ were as light as I’ve ever heard them.   Yet, there were short periods where someone would come up to S5 or so, before dropping off to S1 or less.   That’s how AC4VM was, and I’m glad we got lucky.  

     KA0KYZ’s 10 check-ins on 144.230 were:   W8BYA EN70;  WB0YWW and KG0SJ EN22;  W0HXL EN21;  KB0SPM EN33;  (welcome to the net John, good to have more and more activity from S MN — the rest of MN is always welcome and is within range.)   WB0ULX EN04  ( I know KA0KYZ gets out well to the west and I hope we can get more guys involved from NE, IA and SD.)   W0VB EN34;  K0SIX EN35;  N9OLT EN64;  N0IRS EM29. 
     I was on 144.240 last night (it’s usually WB9LYH in EN54) and I had 14 check-ins:  N9OLT EN64;  N8WNA EN82;  W8BYA EN70;  W9YZU EM69;  K9LQZ EM68 (glad to have Lowell check in and guys, know that K9LQZ is always looking to make skeds on various bands, not just 2m.   Email him with your interest.)   W9KHH EN63;  N9NDP EN62;  AC4VM EM77 (definitely a new grid for the net, and actually that might be a new one all-time for me)  W9RWS EN52;  KG0SJ and WB0YWW EN22;  N9NYA EN43;  KA0KYZ EN33;  WB9TFH EN53.

Also Have 2 SSB Options Now Every Thursday at 0100Z/7pm Central

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

   (If you’re looking for tonight’s — Wednesday — 2m net info, scroll down a few posts) 
  
   I’m going to talk about two Thursday SSB nets in this post, one of which I’ve never publicized before.   It is out of Southeast Ohio — grid square EM89ud.   
 
   First, remember the Q5 net every Thursday at 0100Z, 7pm central on 144.220.   Your friendly net control is N9JBW John, in EN61, south side of Chicago.   John’s been at this for many years now, and they have a good time.   I believe N9JBW starts out looking east and then goes clockwise from there.   He’s always looking for more check-ins from anywhere, so stop by and say hello to the Q5 net. 

   The other option I’ve learned about is on 144.250, also at 0100Z, or 8pm eastern every Thursday.   Net control is usually AB8XG Kenny and backup net control is KD8DJE Russell.  This net is called from EM89ud, or Albany, OH, southeast part of OH.   This is a SWOT net (SideWinders onTwo) but of course, all are welcome.   If you want more info about SWOT, visit www.swotrc.net.   
    I’m happy to promote these nets because I now know both get out a long ways and they’re always looking for more check-ins and to increase activity.   In fact, I’ve emailed with AB8XG and he says they’ve come a long ways in the past 4 years of running it.    They currently run an 18-el beam up 75′ (horizontal, of course, on the SSB/CW portion of 2m).   Also have a 160 watt brick and the QTH is at 1000′ ASL (above sea level).   That is a setup that will get out 300 miles or more, no problem, assuming a clear horizon.   
     The SE Ohio SWOT net starts out at 0100Z/8pm eastern by looking NW for a while, then swinging the beams — not sure which direction(s) first.   After about an hour, they then switch to a horizontal loop array and they start an informal session with locals on SSB.  
    W8BYA in EN70 monitored the net last week and said a variety of 8’s and 4’s checked in, and that AB8XG has a very good signal because W8BYA never lost copy on net control as he rotated around the compass.   Thanks Gedas for letting us know what you heard.  

     So now there are two good options for enjoying 144 MHz SSB on Thursday nights.    Say hello to N9JBW on 144.220 and AB8XG on 144.250, and let them know how well they’re getting out.