Archive for November, 2012

List of Updates I Want to Make

Friday, November 30th, 2012

   2:30pm Friday
   Sometimes I get behind and feeling scatter-brained, and it’s hard to make clear posts.   Plus I’ve slept poorly this week and that gets me sideways. 
   What I do then is make a list of topics and try to follow up with a more detailed post when I have time.  Hopefully I’ll have a good half hour later tomorrow.   (What a joke, I see the list of things I want to update and it’ll take me at least an hour or two)  

   1)  Wed’s net reports — Lots of activity with K8TQK taking 30 check-ins and N9OLT taking 14.  Both N9OLT (144.240, 7pm central) and K8TQK (144.252, 8:30pm eastern) will be ON next Wed.    WB9LYH is back on 144.240 on Dec. 12th and 19th.     
   2)  Variety of nets within tropo range of WI and the Great Lakes are moving around.  Some are moving soon, others later.  Biggest news for this blog is that K8TQK’s 144.252 net will be moving to Monday nights, effective Jan 7th, 2012.  Same start time of 8:30pm eastern.  Same antenna pattern — starts N, then NE, E, SE, S, SW, W and NW over the next hour or so.  
   3)  Another net that will be moving to Mondays is out of EM84, the NOGA net — (Northern GA).  This net will move effective this Monday, Dec. 3rd.  W4TMW is your net control     Start time is 8:00pm eastern.  The antenna pattern is to start *South* then go clockwise from there, or SW, W, NW, N, NE, E and SE.   You will notice that the antenna patterns and start times for the K8TQK and W4TMW nets are offset by design so that VHF’ers will be able to try for either net.   Bob and Tom should have great coverage over many states and Ontario.  Glad that they are making the move back to the traditional 2m night — Monday night.   (I should make a post sometime about the old tradition of Mondays being 144 night, Tuesdays 222 night and Wednesdays 432.) 
   4)   Want to mention the W5VHF net from OK has moved to Monday nights.  It’s called by KD5ZVE or K5SW from EM26, eastern OK.  This net is on 144.190 at 8pm central.  I don’t know the antenna pattern.   This will help fill in part of the gap left behind by the former N0PB net from EM29, northern MO. 
   5)  I should also mention that on Monday nights, there are several other nets out of EN93, FN12 and EL98.  I’ll try to post details when I have time.  All this info is available every morning in KA1ZE’s .205MorningReport.  You can access Stan’s amazing newsletter (really, it’s a magazine!) via his website —
   6)  The 144.240 net from WI will stay on Wed. nights.   WB9LYH would like to see how the Wed. net does on a night where there are no other competing nets within several hundred miles of WI. 

   7)  Will also want to mention N4PZ’s 432.100 activity on Monday night, at 8pm central, from EN52gb, about 70-80 miles west of Chicago. 
   8)  K0SIX wants folks to know about Sunday night nets out of MN on both 6m and 2m.  
          K0SIX in EN35 (about an hour north of the Twin Cities) gets on 50.175 at 8:30pm Sundays and calls around.  Vince has a very big signal on 6m, so he should be able to work guys out to 250-400 miles via groundwave (no special enhancement or sporadic E skip)   He’s also one of the nicest Viking fans I know, so make sure to say hello to the K0SIX 6m net on Sunday nights. 
          There may be times around the holidays where K0SIX is unable to call the net, and if that happens, just look for him the next Sunday.  You could also confirm whether he’s on by asking at the real-time ham chat.   Many of these net controls are using the chat to type updates in real-time.   The chat is free, no BS and available 7/24/365.  Over 3500 VHF’ers have joined by now.  Read this post to learn more.  Or click on the permanlink called “ Ham Chat Rooms” under ESSENTIAL POSTS on the lower right of this page. 
          The 2m net out of MN is called by KA0PQW Matt in EN33, far southern MN.  It’s on 144.260 at 9pm Sundays.  Matt also has a nice signal; I can usually work him on a 250+ mile path.  

   9)  A new beacon is on the air from EN84gq.  It’s the WB2LHP/B on 144.285, up on a TV station tower, near Traverse City, MI.  It transmits 1 watt via a vertical antenna.   I think this net must be from EN74, not EN84.   Traverse City is on the NW side of Lower MI, and it’s squarely in EN74-land.   I’ll see if I can get the straight scoop on this, but if it’s Traverse City, it’s EN74.  

   10)  I will want to share some promotional material about the exciting rule changes in the ARRL Jan VHF contest.  These changes should make it more enjoyable for newcomers and those with limited stations.   The ARRL Jan VHF contest is Jan 19-20th, 2012.   See this post for more details —

  11)  The VHF CONTESTING SCHOOL ARTICLES are also at that link   Don’t know how to “do” a VHF/UHF contest?   No worries, these articles are designed to help someone get comfortable with calling CQ contest.   Spread the articles to your ham buddies and improve VHF/UHF Contesting in your area.  

   Good grief, am I really up to 11 different topics?   Well, I gotta let it go, because I’m out of time for now.   What I will try to do in the next several days is break these nuggets up into different posts.   For now, you have the outline.

K8TQK and N9OLT Net Reports from Nov. 21st + This Wed’s Net Controls

Monday, November 26th, 2012

    3:45pm Monday

    Hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving.   It was 63 F. here for a high on Thanksgiving, but it was down to 28 by the next morning, with a screaming NW wind all day and night Friday.   Now it’s supposed to be back toward 50 by this Saturday and into early next week.   This warmer air may make for periods of band enhancement, so keep an ear to the rigs and call some CQ’s, especially in the mornings and evenings. 

    I want to remind VHF’ers that N9OLT EN64am and K8TQK EM89je will be calling the long-range nets Wed. night.   N9OLT on 144.240 at 7pm central and K8TQK on 144.252 at 8:30pm eastern.  Both net controls start out looking north, then steadily rotate clockwise a full 360 over the next 45-60 minutes.   This means NE, E, SE, S, SW, W, NW.  All licensed amateurs are welcome and we appreciate you spreading the word.    
    K8TQK had 22 check-ins to his 144.252 net last Wed.  They were:  N8DJB EN81;  K8JA, N8AIA and N8WNA EN82;  W8BYA and K9MRI EN70;  W8SOL, KD8IME and KC8ZJL EN71;  NF8O and K8GDT EN91;  KD8DJE, WT8E, W8WG and W9PU EM89;  VA3ELE FN03;  AC3L/M FN00;  WA4REE EM65;  KI4ROF EM55;  N9JBW EN61;  W9EWZ EN52 and W9GA EN53.   
    Grateful for a strong turnout on the night before Thanksgiving.  
    N9OLT called the 144.240 net from EN64am, Green Bay, WI.  John had 6 check-ins:  KD8IME and W8SOL  EN71;  N8WNA EN82;  N9NDP EN62;  W9EWZ EN52 and KA9BXG EN64. 
    John will be calling the 144.240 net again this Wed at 7pm central.  Let’s get more check-ins in his net log this week. 

    Again — I wouldn’t be surprised if the bands are above normal at times during the next week.  Warmer air is forecast to gradually replace colder air in the Midwest.  This is generally a good pattern for making more miles on V/UHF.

Tonight’s Long-Range Nets — N9OLT EN64 on 144.240 and K8TQK EM89 on 144.252

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

   With the bands being open, here’s hoping lots of DX is worked this morning, today, tonight and tomorrow.   These fall/winter openings are precious, so take advantage of them.  Don’t “just listen”.  Call CQ. 

   N9OLT takes the 144.240 net from WI tonight.   John’s QTH is EN64am, Green Bay, WI.  Starts at 7pm central/8pm eastern.  Starts out looking N, then NE, E, SE, S, SW, W and NW over the next hour or so.  If you are in the eastern time zone, you want to look for John in EN64 during the first part of the net.  We intentionally stagger the start times so everyone can look for both net controls, without missing anything. 
    At 7:30pm central/8:30pm eastern, K8TQK comes on with his 144.252 net from EM89je, far south-central OH.  Bob does the same antenna pattern.  Starts N, then NE, E, SE, S, SW, W and NW over the next hour or so. 
    If conditions stay good, tonight’s nets could be special.  They may also be running a little slow, due to a lot of check-ins.  K8TQK had a *TON* of activity on the night before Thanksgiving last year.   Here’s the net report:

    Expect the same net controls for Nov. 28th.

Bands are Way Up This Morning

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

   6:15am Wednesday —
   Very dense fog this morning over much of the Midwest means the bands are wide open.  In fact, the 144 MHz Prop Logger says that an EN52 station is hearing EM16, Oklahoma.
   The real-time APRS 2m map is showing red from the U.P. of MI/WI/IL down into OK/AR.
    I said days ago that we were likely to have good conditions for much of the next week and that’s proving true.  I’d expect the good conditions to continue until a cold front sweeps thru later on Thanksgiving night. 

   Hope many of you are able to get on, call CQ and work some DX. 

   Let’s type up tonight’s net announcement.  It’s N9OLT EN64am on 144.240 at 7pm central and K8TQK EM89je on 144.252 at 8:30pm eastern.

WB9LYH Has 17 Check-Ins and K8TQK 23 Last Night

Thursday, November 15th, 2012

   7am Thur.

   Plenty of activity and good band conditions last night. 
   WB9LYH’s 17 check-ins were:  N9OLT EN64;  KD8IME, W8SOL and KC8ZJL EN71;  KC9RIO, K9CCL, N9JBW and W9SUS EN61;  K9KHW EN63;  W9UIJ and KC9CLM EN52;  WJ8L EN72;  KY9E EN53;  W9YZU EM69;  WA9BNZ EN40;  N9NYA EN43 and KG0SJ EN22. 
    Mark reminds us that N9OLT will be taking the 144.240 net (7pm central/8pm eastern start) on Nov. 21st and Nov. 28th.  N9OLT is John, and he is located in EN64am, Green Bay, WI.   Please get on and say hello to John, as he calls CQ around the compass.   His pattern will be the same as WB9LYH’s.  Start N, then NE, E, SE, S, SW, W and NW over the next 45-60 minutes. 

    K8TQK’s 23 check-ins last night were:  N8WNA, N8AIA and K8JA EN82;  KB8TDA EN70;  KD8IME, W8SOL and KC8ZJL EN71;  KC8YJB and K8GDT EN91;  VA3ELE FN03;  W2UAD FN13;  AC3L/M FN00;  W8WG and WT8E EM89;  KY4MRG EM77;  WA4REE EM65 and KI4ROF EM55;  NR8O EM79;  W0WFH EM48;  KC9CLM EN52;  WB9LYH EN54;  N9OLT EN64 and KD8RSS EM81. 
    K8TQK will also be calling his 144.252 net from EM89je at 8:30pm eastern on both Nov. 21 and Nov. 28. 

    As mentioned before, conditions were quite good last night.  Comments in the chat were favorable.  The current weather pattern is expected to stay (mostly) in place right thru next week.  I wouldn’t be surprised if many of the next 6-8 days have at least some band enhancement.  Hope you are able to get on, call CQ, and find some nice treats.

WB9LYH 144.240 and K8TQK 144.252 Nets ON Tonight

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

   10am Wed.

   Both of our long-range nets will be ON again tonight. 
 *Remember the 144.240 net from WI is now on its winter hours.  This means a 7pm central/8pm eastern start time until spring.*
  WB9LYH is on 144.240 tonight from EN54cl, right in the middle of WI.  Mark starts out looking NE, then steadily moves E, SE, S, SW, W and NW, calling CQ frequently over the next 45-60 minutes.   If you are in the eastern time zone, the time to look for WB9LYH is from 8-8:25pm, before K8TQK’s net starts. 

  K8TQK is on 144.252 tonight from EM89je, south-central OH.  Bob’s start time is 8:30pm eastern, 52 weeks a year.  Bob also starts out looking N, then steadily moves clockwise in a full 360 over the next 45-60 minutes. 
   All licensed amateurs are welcome to these nets.  They are informal and friendly.  The purpose is to stir up more activity on 2m SSB and to test the propagation limits.  
   Both WB9LYH and K8TQK want DX check-ins.  We appreciate everyone in a 400-600 mile radius keeping their ears open.   It does look like the bands could be “up” a little bit tonight, with warmer air (relatively speaking) spreading back in over the cold stuff of the past few days. 

    Looking ahead — 
    Here’s the schedule for the 144.240 net for the rest of November. 
   Nov 21 –  N9OLT EN64am
   Nov 28 — N9OLT EN64am   

   K8TQK also has plans to call his 144.252 net from EM89je on Nov 21st, the night before Thanksgiving.  I’d plan on Bob for Nov. 28th, as well.

Wednesday’s Net Report — WB9LYH had 13 Check-Ins

Friday, November 9th, 2012

   3:30am Friday

   I’ve gotten sick and have been laying low.  I’m half awake so wanted to get this net report out.  
   Took 5 minutes to review the chat transcript from Wed. night and it looks like K8TQK didn’t call a net on 144.252.  Not sure what happened, but there wasn’t a 144.252 net. 
   WB9LYH had 13 check-ins with the 144.240 net from EN54cl.  Remember that the 144.240 net now starts at 0100Z/7pm central/8pm eastern.  
   Mark reported good conditions but not that many stations on.  N9OLT EN64;  N8WNA EN82;  K9CCL, KC9RIO and W9YK EN61;   KC9ZJL EN71;  WB0DBQ EN46;   WJ8L EN72;  KC9CLM EN52;  N0IRS EM29;  KE0MS EN41;  W9MP EN45 and K0SIX EN35. 

   Here’s the schedule for the 144.240 net for the rest of November. 
   Nov 14 — WB9LYH EN54cl
   Nov 21 —  N9OLT EN64am
   Nov 28 — N9OLT EN64am   

   K8TQK also has plans to call his 144.252 net from EM89je on Nov 21st, the night before Thanksgiving.

Both Net Controls Tonight Would Like Your Opinion

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

   11:45am Wed.

   Both WB9LYH and K8TQK are going to ask their check-ins a question or two — both this week and next.   NO, the questions will not be political.  🙂   It will be about a possible change to a different night for either of the nets.    

   They’d like to hear your thoughts, so listen along tonight and speak up, if you feel the need. 

   Thanks, 73,
   Todd   KC9BQA

K8TQK 144.252 Net ON Wed. Night — Usual Time — 8:30pm Eastern

Monday, November 5th, 2012

   7:30am Monday 

    K8TQK will be calling his 144.252 net as usual this Wed.   8:30pm eastern start time from EM89je, or far south-central OH.   Like WB9LYH, K8TQK has a great QTH and big signal.  Bob also enjoys pushing the propagation limits so those of you who are 400 or more miles away, help us spread the word and take a look at EM89 on Wed. nights. 
   K8TQK gets on 144.252 at 8:30pm eastern, looking north, and then moving clockwise, or NE, E, SE, S, SW, W, and NW over the next 45-60 minutes.

WB9LYH 144.240 Net ON Wed. Night **7pm Central Start**

Monday, November 5th, 2012

    7:15am Monday —
    I now know the schedule for this week’s long-range 2m SSB nets. 
    WB9LYH will be ON this Wed. and Nov. 14, too. 
    Mark’s QTH is EN54cl, right in the middle of WI.   He has stacked 17B2’s and 500w from a ridgetop location — one of the best 2m SSB stations in WI.   Gets out a long ways and enjoys pushing the propagation limits.  
    At 7pm central/8pm eastern, WB9LYH takes a quick look NE and then swings E, SE, S, SW, W, NW from there.  This means he’s looking into MI/VE-3/OH by 8:05-8:15pm eastern.  This is now before K8TQK even starts his net so those of you to the east and southeast should have plenty of time to point at EN54 and see what you can hear.   Stations in the FN grids, and eastern EM grids, this applies to you as well.  See if you hear anything from WB9LYH from 8:05-8:30pm eastern.  

    Again —  WB9LYH will be the 144.240 net control from WI for Nov. 7th, and Nov. 14th, starting at 7pm central/8pm start time.