Archive for October, 2010

K8TQK in EM89 on 144.250 had 6 Check-ins Wed. Night

Friday, October 29th, 2010

    Forgot to include K8TQK’s net report from that windy Wednesday night.   With his QTH in Southern OH, he was able to operate, no problem.   KA0KYZ EN33 (144.230) and WB9LYH EN54 (144.240) were both off due to the high winds.  
    Here’s who K8TQK worked:
N8YOH/M  EN80, K8GDT EN91, KI8CA EM89, KD8DJE EM89, W8WG EM89 and K4EQH in EM54
    That is quite a path to far NW Alabama with K4EQH.   Hope that everyone within 300-500 miles of K8TQK becomes aware of this new net option on Wed. nights.  
    NEXT WEDNESDAY K8TQK IN EM89 WILL BE LOOKING A FULL 360 FROM SOUTHERN OHIO, STARTING AT 0030Z.   He’ll start out looking N, then NE, E, SE, S, SW, W, and NW.    Help us spread the word please.  
    Next Wed. the weather looks great so KA0KYZ will be on 144.230 from EN33 SE MN, starting at 0000Z.   I will also be on 144.240 (WB9LYH is unavailable), starting at 0000Z.   I look N, then E, then S, then W.   Our start times are designed so there’s no overlap with the other net controls.    
    Remember we encourage all our check-ins (or anyone who loves 2m SSB/CW) to go and call their own CQ’s after net control has passed them by.   Do this on 144.220 and lower.   When 3 net controls get things stirred up, it’s a good thing.   When several dozen guys in multiple states are on, calling CQ in different directions, then you have a great thing.

9 Check-ins Tonight to 146.430 FM Net

Friday, October 29th, 2010

   It was nice to have an active net tonight.   Thanks guys for checking in.   We heard from several fellows in south-central WI, which perked things up.   Also had a light copy check-in from KC9KOP Shawn who was hilltopping in the mobile out in Richland Co.  
   Tonight we heard from KM4G Germantown, WB9TFH West Allis, N9IDX (relayed by WB9TFH) in Franklin, WD9ITJ Sussex, K0VSC and KC9FNM in Sun Prairie, KC9KOP Richland Co., KC9AOV Edgerton and N9TRY in Portage.  
   K0VSC and KC9FNM had a booming signal from just NE of Madison.   They had access to a vertical up 165′.   Good to hear from Tony and Rich.   KC9KOP was rough copy, but the conditions were poor.   Cold west winds are never helpful for prop.  

    GUYS (gals?) DON’T FORGET ABOUT THE 6M FALL SPRINT THIS SATURDAY EVENING, FROM 6-10PM CENTRAL TIME.   More info about that, including helpful hints is down this main page.   Just scroll down a ways.

146.430 FM Simplex Net ON Thursday @ 8pm

Thursday, October 28th, 2010

    I’ll call the 146.430 FM net at the usual time — 8pm central.   Look toward 40 miles N of Milwaukee.   I call CQ for SE WI Counties first, then open it up to “anyone, anywhere”.   If you’re DX, that’s your cue to say hello.   I have a vertical up 90? and 200w, so I get out pretty well.   I can also switch to a 10 el vertical beam up 75?, if anyone wants a sked.   Please email me prior to the net so I know where to point.   

    WV9E Dave also runs a FM net at 8:30pm every Thursday, and he’s on 146.460, located just north of La Crosse, WI, in EN43.   They have a good group and also enjoy DX check-ins.   I’ve worked them about 1/3 of the time clear across WI, with very light signals.  

    Both these nets are friendly and flexible.   The purpose is to create more activity on less-used portions of 2m.   Say hello when you’re able and please spread the word in a wide area.   We want to hear from all parts of WI and surrounding states.

K8TQK EM89 is ON 144.250 Tonight, 0030Z Start

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

    Please look toward Southern OH and K8TQK for 2m SSB activity tonight.    K8TQK will be starting up the 2nd month of his net activity, helping us spread the RF toward areas we can’t reach from MN and WI.   **K8TQK is capable of working stations in E MI, OH, southern VE-3, NY, PA, VA, W VA, MD, DE, NJ, NC, SC, GA, AL, KY, TN and southern portions of IN and ILL.**   We hope that anyone reading this from those areas will help out 2m activity by spreading the word.    I don’t have good “email propagation” into those areas, so I rely on others to get the word out.   Any questions or comments, email me. 

    Both KA0KYZ and WB9LYH have emailed me to say they’re being pounded by high winds, with no let up in sight.  As such, they won’t be calling their 144.230 and 144.240 nets tonight.    Of course, anyone else is free to call CQ and pick up the slack.   The whole reason we do these nets is to increase overall activity on VHF.  

    If you’ve not yet used chat, you should.   Especially on Wed. nights, when we get decent participation.   Get registered and then choose the IARU Region 2 Room  for 144/432 MHz.

Midwest Wind Event May Impact 2 Meter Nets This Wed.

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

   They’re forecasting a 36-48 hour period of 30-60mph winds (honestly, there will be gusts to 70+)  over many Midwest and Great Lakes states for Tuesday and Wednesday.   The culprit is a low pressure system that’s expected to have barometer readings as low as 28.50 or 28.40″.    If the low does become that strong, it should be a windstorm for the ages.  

   There may be widespread power outages, in which case I won’t be able to email, play radio or update this website.  

   I don’t know if winds will ease by Wed. night.     I honestly think it will stay very windy into Thursday.   This really is looking like a near-historic event.   Stay tuned here and we’ll try to update what KA0KYZ in EN33 (Southeast MN) and WB9LYH in EN54 (Central WI) are able to do on Wed. night.   If you want to know what we do each week with our various long-range nets, the info is down a little ways.   
   K8TQK in EM89 (Southern OH) should be OK with the winds on Wed. night.   I imagine Bob will do his usual thing on 144.250, starting at 0030Z.   Folks to the NE, E, SE, S, and SW of EM89 should spread the word about this exciting new opportunity every Wed. night.  

    Everyone with aluminum in the air has my best wishes over the next 2 days.

6 Check-ins to 146.430 FM Simplex Net Tonight

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

   Tonight with the FM net, we heard from:   KC9SXO in Thiensville, N9LAD in Oak Creek, KM4G in Germantown, WD9ITJ in Sussex, WB9TFH in West Allis and KB9VUP Brownsville, Fond du Lac Co.    We also had a very light signal who tried hard to check-in, but we just couldn’t dig him out.   Hope he gets in contact because we can swing a 10 el vertical beam his way another time.   (I did call for him to the E, the N and the W, and that didn’t help)  
   That tip applies to anyone — if you’re 70, 100, 150 miles away and would like to try some DX’ing, by all means, email me prior to the net and I’ll know to look for you.    Love to push the propagation limits and our check-ins understand that.

6 Meter Sprint is Sat. Oct 30th, 2300-0300Z

Thursday, October 21st, 2010

   The Fall Sprints wrap up with the 6m sprint on the evening of Sat. Oct 30th.   Here’s the full QST:     Next to the 144 sprint which was some weeks back, this one will have the most activity.   Get on 6m with whatever you have and make contacts.   Typically, 80-90% of guys use horizontally polarized antennas.   The call freq. is 50.125, but don’t stay locked there.   Tune *UP* from 50.125, up to say about 50.150 or 50.180 if it gets busy.    You want to avoid 50.110-50.125 unless you hear non-USA DX.   50.110-.125 is the DX window and we keep it free of USA/USA activity so the DX can be heard — it’s a gentleman’s agreement.   Some guys don’t know any better, but now you do.   🙂
    You also have a CW subband on 6m from 50.080-50.110.   Plenty of activity there in an opening or contest — try it out.    Below 50.080 is the beacon band, and that’s fun to tune into.   50.060-50.080 is USA beacons, and below 50.060 are DX beacons.   Here’s a good beacon list for 6m:   A good beacon list for 144 MHz and higher bands is at:  

    In October, it would be a pretty big surprise to have a sporadic E skip opening (they are common in summer), but one never knows…  If you’re new to 6m, know that the groundwave range with good antennas up high is about 70-90% of a well-equipped 144 station.   But when that sporadic Es kicks in, that’s when you suddenly hear guys from TX, FL, CO, NY, lord only knows.   That’s why guys are so passionate about 6m, and that’s why they call it the Magic Band.   If you do nothing else, get yourself set up for 6m by next April into May.   That’s when the fun really begins.   (Actually, there’s usually some days with E skip in Dec. and Jan. too.)  

    If you are FM-only on 6m, then you want to operate around 52.525.    That will come alive sometimes, especially during skip season.   But if you want the maximum fun (or Magic!) out of 6m, get on SSB, and get ready for E skip season.

146.430 and 146.460 FM Simplex Nets ON Thur. Night 10/21

Thursday, October 21st, 2010

    Both myself and WV9E in EN43, just north of La Crosse will be doing our FM nets Thursday night, 10/21.   WV9E’s website is if you want more info.   I’ll refer you to the same post I made last week, if you want more info.   That link is   
    Both these nets are friendly and flexible, run by individuals who are promoting more activity on less-used portions of 2 meters.   Tell a friend and say hello when you are able.

Tonight’s SSB Net Reports — Better Numbers

Thursday, October 21st, 2010

   Conditions weren’t anything special tonight.   Many reported high noise levels.   But as usual, good participation made it worthwhile.   
   KA0KYZ in EN33 called around the compass at least twice and worked:  N9UM and W9RM EN52;  KC0MIA EM28;  W9GA EN53 and KC9BQA EN63.   Terry’s signal to me was down considerably.   Want to give a special shout to KC0MIA, who operates with stacked 7 el beams in his attic.   The EM28/EN33 path is 360 miles, and I think that’s a heckuva contact given ‘MIA’s attic beams and the poor cx’s tonight.   Thanks to KC0MIA for following along with the nets for well over a year now. 

    WB9LYH in EN54 had 22 contacts.   N9OLT EN64;  N8FQ EN62;  KF8QL EN72;  K8TQK EM89;  N8WNA, VE3LPY and K8JA EN82;  K8GDT EN91;  WB9TFH and W9GA EN53;  K9IJ EN52;  WB9WOZ EN61;  W9YZU EM69;  WA9BNZ EN40;  WB0YWW EN22;  K0CQ EN32;  KA0KYZ EN33;  WV9E EN43;  K9MU EN44;  N9OB EN34;  KC9BQA EN63;  and WB9EZB EN55.    
     Nice to hear from K0CQ.   Believe that’s Gerry’s first time checking in.   N9OB is a new check-in, also.   Heard N9OB mention he has a log periodic.   He was light copy here, but made the 241 mile path to my ears.   He must have a good QTH.  

    On 144.250, K8TQK had 11 check-ins.   K8JA, N8WNA and VE3LPY EN82;  K9LQZ EM68;  K8WW/QRP EN81;  N8YOH/M EN80;  VE3ZV EN92;  N8OQH EN81;  W9YZU EM69;  WA3TTS EN90 and WA4REE EM65.    I talked with Bob on .250 after 0145 and he said he also had high noise levels.   He mentioned that he just couldn’t dig out at least 1 or 2 callers to his NE.  

    As of now, it looks like we’ll be doing the same deal next Wed.   KA0KYZ in EN33 on 144.230 and WB9LYH in EN54 on 144.240, both starting at 0000Z.   And now K8TQK in EM89 on 144.250, starting at 0030Z.   Please spread the word.   We esp. need the word spread out to the NE, E, SE, S and SW of EM89.   I don’t have email contacts to those areas.   If you know of guys who want weekly email reminders, send me their info — my email’s good on  

    Activity in chat for IARU Region 2 144/432 MHz was good tonight.   Keep promoting it, and invite a friend or 3 to come along for the ride.   The long-term goal is to get dozens in there most nights and weekends.   It’s open anytime and available for all USA/VE/XE VHF’ers.   Scroll down this page to my Oct. 15th post for more info about the chat.  Feel free to spread that info — guys will thank you for it down the road.

Your Feedback Requested Here — Do you Prefer a Later Start Time for the SSB Nets?

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

   Are the net numbers down due to the nets now starting an hour earlier??   I’d like your opinion.    You can use the “contact me” feature at the top of the page (red button) or click on the light grey part just below this post that says “no comments” or “1, 2, 3 (etc.) comments”.  

   Eastern time zone guys, tell me if you’d rather have a net start at 8pm or 9pm your time. 
   Central time zone guys, tell me if you’d rather have a net start at 7pm or 8pm your time. 
   Central time zone guys remember that at least with WB9LYH in EN54, he’s looking east for the first 20-30 minutes or so anyway.   WI and ILL and states farther west aren’t targeted until after 7:20-7:40pm central time.  

   Either way, we would start the nets an hour later next spring, about early-mid April, when the weather starts getting nicer and the days substantially longer.   We just want to know what your preference is during the winter months.   

   This doesn’t concern the new 144.250 net that K8TQK is calling from EM89 because he’s already starting at 8:30pm eastern time.