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The EARS WA4IWLetter

JUNE 2001

-- PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE --

Field Day, June 23rd and 24th - You know it is always the fourth full weekend in June. However, this year, because the fourth weekend is missing a day in June, we will be having Field Day a week earlier.

Field Day has three main functions:

1) To test the readiness of the Amateur Radio Emergency Communications in the even of an emergency,

2) To use our skills and equipment under difficult conditions, and

3) It is one of the real fun times to be with friends and family away from the solitude of your shack.

This year I hope we can have lots of participation. Let's make this an all-out effort to get everyone who is still down here in "paradise" involved.

We will be operating on all bands and using all modes. And we will have our traditional family picnic on Sunday afternoon. The site will again be in the overflow parking area behind the Englewood United Methodist Church on Dearborn Street. Set up will begin on Friday, June 22nd.

Call our Field Day Coordinator Keith Herve-WL7CKY and see how you can help out with various tasks that need to be done. Keith's phone numbers are: Days - (941)504-4568 (Cell); Nights - 460-0507 (Home) or via the cell phone number. Keith will be bringing his RV to Field Day this year, which will be just great and much appreciated. Looking forward to seeing all of you at Field Day this year!

73 de Vic-KF4VHX

-- JUNE MEETING --

The next EARS meeting will be held 15 June at the Englewood United Methodist Church, 700 East Dearborn St. Officers' meeting will be held in the church library at 6 PM. The business meeting will start at 7:30 PM in Room 400, Fellowship Hall. The program will be a presentation by the Charlotte County Director of Emergency Management, Wayne Sallade. As we have now entered the Hurricane Season, this should be a discussion of interest to all.

"I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents." - James Madison

---ooo---

--ON THE GO WITH EARS --

EARS has been showing its face to the public at several local events of general interest.

On 18 and 19 May, EARS participated in the Englewood Chamber of Commerce's Expo 2001 at the Tringali Community Center. Our display table was manned by EARS members Jerry Meckenberg-K4JWE, Bruce Robideau-K2OY and Bill Stevens-W1AMU the morning of 18 May, with Howard Kuhlman-N4MLJ and John Kelly-N1KEN taking the afternoon duty. On 19 May, Tom Hawes-WA3PRC and JR House-K9HUY were on the morning shift, with Bob Carstens-KG4IAW there in the afternoon. JR brought his old railroad telegraph/sounder key and attracted a lot of attention from veteran radiomen and railway telegraphers.

On 31 May, EARS shared a table with RACES at the Lemon Bay High School, participating in the Charlotte County Emergency Management program on hurricane preparedness. Dave Hanson-KB0EVM was there on behalf of Charlotte County RACES, and we had the opportunity to talk to the attendees about the services we are trained to provide in the event of an emergency.

-- TRANSCEIVER SURVEY --

Rod Dinkins, AC6V, recently requested feedback for his informal e-mail survey of transceivers used by DXers. In less than one week, he had 361 responses and Yaesu was the leader. The four most popular brands and their two most popular transceivers are:

o YAESU - 144 total users

FT-1000MP - 62 users

FT-1000D - 32 users

o KENWOOD - 101 total users

TS-850 - 16 users

TS-940 - 15 users

o ICOM - 83 total users

IC-706 MK II - 13 users

IC-756 PRO - 11 users

o TEN-TEC - 20 total users

OMNI VI+ - 13 users

Perhaps of interest, the most popular rig, the FT-1000MP is now available on closeout at less than $2200, the two Kenwood rigs are no longer manufactured, and the most popular Icom rig is also their smallest and least expensive transceiver, now priced at about $935. Rather interesting!

ENGLEWOOD AMATEUR RADIO SOCIETY

Minutes of the Meeting

May 18, 2001

President Vic Emmelkamp-KF4VHX opened the meeting at 7:30 pm with the Pledge of Allegiance. Joann Adamy-KC4WJ and Joe Sullivan-WA1WLU were welcomed as new members. WCF Assistant Section Manager Paul Toth-NA4AR, Jackie Forbes-N4XKG, Jack Keim-KE4IM and "Uncle Bill" Luzius were welcomed as guests.

Don Spencer-WA4IWL moved to accept the minutes of the April meeting as printed in the May newsletter. Seconded by Joann Adamy-KC4WJ and carried.

Bruce Robideau-K2OY gave the Treasurer's Report and provided a copy to the Secretary. The April 20 balance was $3447.22. Deposits during the month totaled $65.80; expenses were $352.00 for insurance and $38.00 for newsletter printing and postage, bringing the May 18, 2001 balance to $3123.02.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Vic-KF4VHX reported that he and Dennis Babcock-NT9K were working on the 2001 Membership Directory. The 2002 Charlotte County Hamfest is scheduled for March 9, 2002, however, committee members still needed from EARS and a site must still be selected. Vic encouraged ARRL members to renew through the club. Several EARS members have been manning an exhibit table at Expo 2001, sponsored by the Englewood Chamber of Commerce at Tringali Center. EARS will be participating in the ARRL Field Day June 23-24 and approval has been received to operate again from the Boca Grande Lighthouse for International Lighthouse Weekend August 18-19, 2001. Vic announced that Dennis Babcock-NT9K has offered to assume publication of The WA4IWLetter and will work out the transition with the current editor during the coming months.

WCF Assistant Section Manager Paul Toth-NA4AR took the floor to present Founder's Certificates to EARS for the club's donation, and to Jack Sproat-W4JS for his personal donation, toward the creation of the K4WCF Repeaters. Paul invited all to visit the repeater web site at <www.qsl.net/ k4wcf> to keep abreast of developments with the repeaters.

CORRESPONDENCE

A letter received from Art Komarek-WB9VQD, thanking the club for the thoughtful card, was read by Bruce Robideau-K2OY. A card was also received from the Francis G. Kouri Family, thanking the club for the sympathy card.

COMMITTEE REPORTS

SUNSHINE - Gene Fowler-KA1GCU reported that a sympathy card was sent to the family of Don Glaum-KB8YXE on his passing, and to the family of Frank Kouri-K4KF on the passing of Frank's wife. Sel Kerrigan-WB1CYM advised that he had talked with "Uncle John" Johnston-K1RSC, who will observe his 91st birthday on May 20th. Gene proposed sending a congratulatory card.

RACES - Members were reminded of RACES drills.

PUBLICITY - Jerry Meckenberg-K4JWE was not present

TESTING - No exams scheduled for this month.

DX - Bruce-K2OY briefly played a CD he received from the IG9A operation during the CQWW DX Contest, and reported on a 6-meter opening into Trinidad.

OLD/NEW BUSINESS - None

ANNOUNCEMENTS - Jim Hanushek-N4JBZ commented there's another "EARS" in the area--this one related to an animal shelter.

PROGRAM - Paul Toth-NA4AR gave an informative presentation on the SKYWARN System in operation regionally and invited interested spotter candidates to contact him at <na4ar@arrl.net>.

The meeting adjourned at 9:00 pm. There were 22 members and 4 guests in attendance.

Jack Sproat-W4JS

Acting Secretary

-- AMATEUR RADIO LICENSE EXAMS --

The EARS VE Team offers ARRL VEC license exams at 9:30 am the 3rd Saturday of each month at the Chamber of Commerce building, 601 South Indiana Avenue, Englewood. Two-day advance reservation is required--no walk-ins.

Candidates must bring:

(1) Original license and a copy of that license.

(2) Original CSCE's and a copy of each CSCE.

(3) FCC Licensee ID No. or Social Security card.

(4) Photo identification.

(5) A check in the amount of $10.00 payable to "ARRL VEC", or cash in the above amount.

For further information/reservation, contact EARS VE Team Liaison Jack Sproat, W4JS, at 475-1929

-- DX ALERT ISSUES --

John Shelton, K1XN, who publishes the Go List for QSL routes, has made available for all another tool to help DXers work new ones or new modes. Check out <http://www.golist.net/dxalert.html>, which offers a tabulation of scheduled DXpeditions, with call signs, QSL routes, modes and frequencies of operation. The list, which goes five months into the future, is updated every 10-14 days.

(From NJDXA Reflector, 12 May 2001)

-- SNOWBIRD NET --

The Snowbird Net meets daily at 10 am on 14.278, and at 7:00 pm on 7.230. Join in!

"Chance favors the prepared mind." - Louis Pasteur


Page - 3


-- THE WWV NUMBERS --

At 18 minutes past the hour, WWV (Ft. Collins, CO) broadcasts propagation data useful to all amateurs utilizing the HF bands. These data are updated every three hours, with the values for the current day given at 2118 GMT. These data, given as numerical indices, are:

o Solar Flux Index for the day

o Estimated Boulder A Index

o Estimated Boulder K Index

o Data on current conditions, e.g., major flares, geomagnetic storms, stratwarm conditions, satellite proton events, etc.

o Forecast for the next 24 hours

The Solar Flux Index is a measurement of Sun radio noise at 2750 MHZ (10.7 cm), providing a proven analog of energies that excite both the E and F layers of the ionosphere. The SFI relates to sunspot activity approximately as per:

SFI Sunspots

68 None

77 10

83 20

90 30

104 50

135 100

158 130

180 160

The SFI has a periodicity of about 27.5 days at its equator.

The Boulder A Index, a measure of geomagnetic field activity on a scale of 0 to 400, is derived from eight 3-hour K indices recorded at Boulder each day. The daily A Index is known at 2400 GMT and first reported in the 0000 GMT update.

The Boulder K Index, on a scale of 0 to 9, is derived from magnetometer readings at the Table Mountain Observatory, north of Boulder. The K Index is a measure of variation of the earth's magnetic field from quiet conditions, and is read and reported every three hours.

The mathematical relationships between the K Indices and the resultant A Index are:

K Index A Index

0 0

1 4

2 7

3 15

4 27

5 48

6 80

7 140

8 240

9 400 or greater

The terms used to describe the earth's geomagnetic activity are related to the A and K Indices:

Term A Index Range Typical K Indices

Quiet 0 - 7 < 2

Unsettled 8 - 15 < 3

Active 16 - 29 + 4

Minor Storm 30 - 49 4 - 5

Major Storm 50 - 99 > 6

Severe Storm 100 - 400 > 7

HF propagation varies from month-to-month and with the sunspot cycles. The WWV data are good indicators of what bands and paths may be open:

A Index Range Comments

0 - 7 Quiet, Excellent polar paths

8 - 15 Unsettled, Good conditions

16 - 29 Heralding a Storm

30 - 49 Minor Storm, No polar path

> 50 Major Storm, No paths open

When the SFI falls below 100, there will be little 10-meter propagation other than occasional openings into the southern hemisphere.

(From "Understanding the Numbers from WWV-WWVH", Lee R. Wical, KH6BZF, The DX Magazine, May/June 2001; "Geophysical Alert Broadcasts on WWV and WWVH", MINIPROP PLUS, Sheldon Shallon, W6EL, c. 1985-1992)

-- KACHINA QUITS HAM MARKET --

Only four years after its debut at the 1997 Dayton Hamvention, Arizona-based Kachina discontinued production of its PC-controlled Amateur Radio transceiver and all other HF radio products, effective 24 May 2001. Kachina VP Cameron Earnshaw blamed "the slowdown in Amateur Radio" and high production costs for calling it quits. Factory warranties will be honored through their duration and service and parts will be available for the foreseeable future.

(From ARRL Letter Vol. 20, No. 21)

-- ATTENTION HOME-BREWERS! --

An "Experimenters Brag-fest" is being planned for the ARRL's Southeastern Division Convention at the Tampa Bay Hamfest, 01-02 December 2001 up in Palmetto. It's open to anyone who has scratch-built a project they've designed or taken from QST, and to clubs that have built up a project they want to show off. The designer/ builder must demonstrate the project in a short 5-15 minute presentation and be ready to fend off all questions from the ARRL technical specialists. Power and an overhead projector will be available. If you're interested, contact Bill Holcomb, K4NIO, via e-mail at <k4nio@arrl.net>.

-- SNOWBIRD NET --

The Snowbird Net meets daily at 10 AM on 14.278, and at 7:00 PM on 7.230. The Birds are all back in their northern nests, so join in wherever you are.


Page - 4


-- FLORIDA ENFORCEMENT NEWS --

A trial date of 07 May 2001 was set for William "Rabbit Ears" Flippo of Jupiter, who was arrested last summer for interfering with Amateur radio operations and for transmitting without a license. Flippo, is charged with four counts of operating without a license and four counts of deliberate and malicious interference to a licensed service.

Flippo, 58, already faces a $20,000 fine levied in 1999 for unlicensed operation, willful and malicious interference, and failure to let the FCC inspect his radio equipment. During a search of his property, the FCC seized some three dozen items related to the alleged offenses, including radio equipment.

Personnel from the FCC's Tampa District Office followed up on complaints that Rabbit Ears regularly interfered with amateur operations, especially on 10 and 12 meters. FCC personnel visited the Jupiter area at least twice in 1999 as a result of these complaints. The FCC was able to track offending signals to Flippo's home. (From The ARRL Letter, 04 May 2001)

The FCC has set aside the Technician license of Joseph Mattern, KG4NGG, of Orlando. Mattern formerly held Tech+ license WW4WJD, however, as the subject of past FCC enforcement action he didn't make it past FCC-required retesting last year. Riley Hollingsworth, FCC Special Counsel, stated Mattern "was only back on the air for a few days before complaints started coming in, including one alleging use of a false call sign. He also was asked by the control operator to stay off several Orlando-area repeaters."

Mattern's Technician application now reverts to pending status. (From The ARRL Letter, 01 June 2001)

-- DXCC CHALLENGE --

The DXCC Challenge award was initiated 01 January 2000 for holders of 5-Band DXCC who could work and confirm at least 1000 band-entities, with the first "cut off date" being 30 September 2000. Nine DX bands from 160 to 6 meters (except 30 meters) could be used for credit. A congratulatory letter is awarded for the basic 1000 level, with a plaque for 1500 and the DeSoto Cup for being "No. 1" on 30 September 2000.

By that date, Bob Eshleman, W4DR, had worked and confirmed the amazing total of 2383 band-entities from up in Virginia!! Of interest, 10 of the top 22 participants live in the 4th Call District. (Retired with more time, better propagation, big stations?) Closer to home, N6AR in Winter Garden had 2057, N4WW in Apopka tallied 2019, and N4TO over in Sebring had 1305 band-entities. As of 31 March 2001, 598 DXers had at least 1000 worked/confirmed.

(From The Weekly DX, 07 May 2001, "The DXCC Challenge", June 2001 QST and DXCC Web site at <www.arrl.org/awards/dxcc/>)


-- GROUNDING COAX CABLES --

(Tom Rauch, W8JI, provided some excellent recommendations for grounding coax cables -- TowerTalk, 25 May 2001 . Your editor will be making some feed line revisions in the near future!)

"The coax (shield) should always be grounded at the top of the tower when a balun is used. That insures the cable shield is at tower potential for both lightning and RF.

"I had a bad case of TVI once because a barrel connector was just barely apart from the tower leg (held away the thickness of a few layers of tape); it would arc to the tower leg. Just the smallest arc 100 feet in the air will really wipe out TV sets! I had TVI for a mile on fringe channels.

"I also had a case where a feed line was arcing to the tower leg through the jacket of some hardline through a steel hanger 1/4 wavelength down from a dipole's feedpoint! Grounding the cable at the top fixed both problems, so I now make it a point to ground at each end of the tower. Usually I have an antenna switch at the bottom. It is important for both RF and lightning (which has high levels of RF energy) that the shield is grounded.

"It's a good idea to have a good connection between the mast and the tower, if you have a rotator."

-- CLASSIFIED --

For Sale: Mosley TA-33-JR-N-WARC Yagi beam antenna - 3 yrs old. Five bands - 10, 12, 15, 17, 20 meters. Very good condition, and it's yours for $100. Call Ken Anderson, W4JQT, at 475-3172

For Sale: The following items are for sale:

o Micronta Model 22-024 Transistor Tester - $15

o Micronta Model 21-525B Field Strength/SWR Meter - $10

o Dentron W2 Watt Meter/dual range, 1-200 and 10-2000 watts - $30

o Heath Model HD-16 Code Oscillator - $15

o B & W Model 550A Antenna Switch - $15

o MFJ Model 941D 300-Watt Versa Tuner II - $30

o MFJ Model 1621 Portable Antenna - $35

o ICOM SP3 External Speaker - $40

o ICOM 27A 2-meter Xcvr w/mic - $100

o Johnson low pass filter - $15

o Radio Shack Model 21-543 Digital Signal Processor - $35

o Microwave Devices Inc. 2-meter SWR/Watt Meter - $15

Contact John Karban, W3IGC, 660 Buenos (LaCasa), North Port, FL 34287-2588; phone 426-8318; e-mail to bebejay@juno.com

"There is no security on this earth; there is only opportunity." - Douglas MacArthur


Page - 5


CONTESTS AND ACTIVITIES
Contest/Special Event Times/Dates Bands/Modes QSO With Exchange
Portugal Day Contest 0000 GMT 09 June

2400 GMT 09 June

80 - 10 Meters

SSB

Anyone, Anywhere R/S + Serial No.
ANARTS WW RTTY Contest 0000 GMT 09 June

2400 GMT 10 June

80 - 10 Meters

RTTY

Anyone, Anywhere R/S/T, CQ Zone & Time
TOEC WW Grid Contest 1200 GMT 09 June

1200 GMT 10 June

160 - 10 Meters

SSB

Anyone, Anywhere R/S + Grid Square
ARRL VHF QSO Party 1800 GMT 09 June

0300 GMT 11 June

6 Meters and Up

SSB/CW

Anyone, Anywhere Grid Square
All Asian DX Contest 0000 GMT 16 June

2400 GMT 17 June

160 - 10 Meters

CW

Asian Stations Only R/S/T + Age (2 digits)
Marconi Memorial Contest 1400 GMT 23 June

1400 GMT 24 June

160 - 10 Meters

CW Only

Anyone, Anywhere R/S/T + Serial No.
ARRL Field Day 1800 GMT 23 June

2100 GMT 24 June

160 to Microwave

All Modes

Anyone, Anywhere Entry Category, Section
RAC Canada Day Contest 0000 GMT 01 July

2400 GMT 01 July

160 - 2 Meters

SSB/CW

Anyone, Anywhere R/S/(T) + Serial No.
Venezuela DX Contest 0000 GMT 30 June

2400 GMT 01 July

160 - 10 Meters

SSB

Anyone, Anywhere R/S + Serial No.
Spanish Island Contest 0500 GMT 02 July

1300 GMT 02 July

80 - 10 Meters

SSB/RTTY/CW

Preferably Spanish Islands R/S/(T) + Serial No.

From June 2001 QST, June 2001 Worldradio and LA9HW Contest Pages

-- K9HUY WINS IN CQ VHF --

JR House, K9HUY, was one of the 111 VHF operators who submitted a log for participation in the 2000 CQ WW VHF Contest, held the second weekend of last July. After the dust settled and the logs were checked, JR took First Place in the Fourth Call District and came in at Third Place for the All-Band entries in the USA, with a score of 37,846 points! JR managed to make 270 QSOs in 127 grid squares. Of those, JR had 256 QSOs on 6 meters in 119 grid squares. Logs were submitted from nine countries, including three stations from Thailand. Well done, JR!

(From June 2001 CQ)

-- WORLD RADIOSPORT --

The World Radiosport Team Championship (WRTC) is held periodically, bringing together over fifty teams comprised of the best contest operators from around the world. The competitors gather in one geographical area and are provided equal operating conditions (antennas, power, etc.), such that operating skills are emphasized. The actual competition is held during the IARU HF Championship Contest in July. The next WRTC will be held in Finland during the 2002 IARU contest.

Fund raising kicked off at the Dayton Hamvention. In the USA, the Northern California DX Foundation is serving as the clearing house for all donations.

--CONTEST UPDATES ON THE INTERNET --

No doubt that there is a lot of contest activity on the bands, but staying informed and up-to-date on those contests--especially those in nontraditional modes such as RTTY and PSK31--can be a challenge. A Norwegian, Jan Almedal, LA9HW, has come to the rescue. Jan has assembled a directory of over 400 contests, indexed on a monthly basis. Complete rules are also available for every listed contest. You can access this information at <http://ac6v.com/contestlinks.htm>.

-- CONTEST TIPS --

It's a good idea to ask multi-operator stations what other frequencies they are using while searching and pouncing. The good operators never hesitate to answer even in the middle of their pile-ups. (From N4GI in "Contesting", May 2001 CQ)

If you use a remote foot-switch consider the following. Obtain an appropriately sized piece of carpet to fit under the operating position. Cut a hole in this carpet that is slightly larger than the foot-switch and place it over the foot-switch. This will help keep the foot-switch from wandering. (From WZ3AR in "Contesting", June 2001 CQ)

"The income tax is a slave tax--inherently incompatible with freedom." - Alan Keyes


Page - 6


CURRENT/PENDING DX ACTIVITY AND PROPAGATION FORECASTS
CURRENT and/or SCHEDULED DX ACTIVITY

(Band/GMT for best chance of S5 or better signal)

COUNTRY - CALLSIGN ACTIVITY

PERIOD

BEARING 80 40 20 17 15 12 10
Palestine - E4/OE1GZA

Maldive Is - 8Q7WH

Jersey Is - GJ/German Ops

Ceuta - EA9/JI6KVR

St Pierre & Miquelon - FP/K4JZ

Aland Is - OH0JWL, OH0JWH

Mozambique - C93/Japanese Ops

Mayotte - FH/PA3GIO

Dodecanese - SV5/GW0VSW

Reunion Is - FR/PA3GIO

Crete - SV9/F8BBL

Now Active

04 - 11 June

07 - 12 June

08 - 12 June

08 - 14 June

10 - 22 June

09 - 20 June

11 - 18 June

16 - 30 June

19 - 22 June

25 June - 02 July

49

41

46

61

39

31

101

85

49

91

51

00>03

NO

00>05

00>06

00>09

01>02

00>05

00>04

00>03

00>03

00>03

23>04

00>01

23>07

22>07

20>13

00>06

23>06

23>05

23>05

23>04

23>05

18>09

20>04

00>24

00>24

00>24

00>24

18>10

19>07

18>10

19>07

19>10

21>04

19>03

13>23

00>24

11>22

00>24

06>17

17>00

22>04

20>24

18>05

00>03

20>04

12>23

12>03

NO

12>23

12>17

18>23

22>04

12>16

21>04

12>14

NO

NO

NO

NO

NO

12>17

16>18

NO

12>16

NO

NO

NO

NO

NO

NO

NO

NO

NO

NO

1430

NO

Updated 01 June 2001, based on 04 June 2001 QRZ DX, 28 May 2001 The Weekly DX and DX Alert

Notes: NO = No opening forecast. ??? = Callsign not yet known. Long path bearings and opening times (if any) are underlined.

Solar Flux assumed at 150 and F-Index at 2 for all forecasts.

-- JUNE PROPAGATION --

May's Solar Flux ranged from 129 to 201, and averaged 148.6, with the A-index being < 10 for 19 days. The June propagation forecast ("Propagation" by George Jacobs, W3ASK, June 2001 CQ) follows.

While fewer east-west openings are expected, 10 and 12 meters should provide excellent daytime propagation on north-south paths to Central and South America, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific areas.

The 15- and 17-meter bands will likely be the optimum DX bands during the daylight hours. They should open shortly after sunrise, peak during the afternoon and remain open for DX through the early evening. Daylight paths will favor Central and South America and Africa, with signals peaking towards Europe during the late afternoon, and towards Asia and the Pacific during the late afternoon and early evening. On some days the 17-meter band may remain open as late as midnight.

The 20-meter band should open to some area of the world or another for the entire 24-hour period on most days. Signals should peak in all directions just after local sunrise and toward the east and south during the early evening. During darkness, propagation should be possible to almost all areas of the world, peaking towards Asia and the Pacific after midnight.

The 30- 40- and 80-meter bands should continue to provide good DX openings during the hours of darkness despite the higher static levels.

-- HOPE FOR ANDAMAN & NICOBAR --

VU2NTA reports that after two years of discussions with the government, Indian hams may succeed in getting permission to operate from these islands.

-- CONTESTERS/DXERS HONORED --

CQ magazine honors outstanding contesters and DXers at the annual Dayton Hamvention. This year, "Sig" Sigismonti, N3RS, and Algis Kregzde, LY2NK, were officially inducted into the Contest Hall of Fame at the 19 May contest dinner. During the DX dinner 18 May, Bob Allphin, K4UEE, (from Georgia) and Bob Eshleman, W4DR, (from Virginia) were officially inducted into the DX Hall of Fame. You can read their biographies in the June CQ and the May/June CQ Contest.

(From Ohio/Penn DX Bulletin No. 512, 20 May 2001)

-- LIGHTNING PROTECTION --

Bill Hilder, N3RR, has an impressive antenna installation up in Maryland. Consequently, he put a lot of time and energy into lightning protection. On 21 May 2001 Bill added a new section on "lightning protection subsystem" to his web site, including links to the vendors of the various equipment and materials he used in this system. Check it out at <http://www.erols.com/n3rr>.

(From TowerTalk Reflector, 21 May 2001)

-- END OF AN ERA --

London newspapers on 26 May 2001 reported that the BBC World Service will cease shortwave broadcasting to North America, Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific, effective 01 July 2001. The move is expected to save some $720,000 annually. Transmissions will continue over the Internet and via commercial FM stations which subscribe to the BBC's service. BBC will continue HF broadcasting to Asia and Africa.


Page - 7


-- DAYTON HAMVENTION HIGHLIGHTS --

Some 27,000 to 28,000 folks turned out for the 2001 Dayton Hamvention--about the same number as in 2000. Some 3 inches of rain didn't dampen the spirits of the enthusiasts.

Major manufacturers had rather little new to offer--and that was mostly in the VHF area: Alpha Power showed its "Alpha 6/2" maximum legal power VHF amplifier; Ten-Tec offered its "Model 526 '6N2'", an all-mode 6-and 2-meter transceiver; and the new Kenwood "TH-F6A" hand-held triband FM VHF transceiver with wideband receive, including HF.

Speaking at the FCC Forum, Bill Cross, W3TN, of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau said it's up to the Amateurs themselves to determine the course of future ham radio regulation. The FCC now plans to look to the amateur community to reach consensus on any new regulations it thinks it wants and needs. Before the FCC initiates any procedures to change privileges, for instance, it wants to see proposals involving implementation of "new and more modern communications technologies", such as digital modes. Cross added that the FCC does not want proposals of piecemeal changes in privileges that affect only certain classes of licenses or certain bands.

(From ARRL Letter Vol. 20, No. 21)

-- CABLE LUBRICANT --

Own a crank-up tower? If you do, you undoubtedly are concerned about protecting the integrity of the raising cable. Jim Reid, KH7M (TowerTalk, 23 May 2001), noted that when the 7-year-old cable on his tower broke, it was in a rusted section that had been wound on the winch reel. "In other words, the rope exposed to the sun/rain whatever out here on this island was not rusted, it was the rope on the winch where the heavy rusting took place." A word to the wise: Care for your tower cables!

"PreLube 6" is a polymer-enhanced preservative wire rope and chain lubricant manufactured by the Grignard Company. A 12-oz. aerosol can is available fro $7.50 + shipping from Champion Radio Products, Box 2034, El Macero, CA 95618; telephone 1-888-833-3104. Or check out other useful ham radio items on their web site <http://www. championradio.com>.

-- NOTABLE QUOTES -

"In keeping Americans ill-educated, ill-informed and constitutionally ignorant, the education establishment has been the politician's major and most faithful partner." - Walter Williams

"Nobody ever lost money underestimating the intelligence of the American public." - Brother Steve

"A little government and a little luck are necessary in life, but only a fool trusts either of them." - P. J. O'Rourke

---ooo---

-- WHO REALLY COUNTS? --

Perhaps you have to be a bit long in the tooth to really appreciate this, but give this little quiz a shot, regardless of your "seniority":

1. Name the five wealthiest people in the world.

2. Name the last five Heisman trophy winners.

3. Name the last five winners of the Miss America contest.

4. Name ten people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer prize.

5. Name the last half-dozen Academy Award winners for Best Actor and Actress.

6. Name the last decade's worth of World Series winners.

Well, how did you do? The point is, none of us remembers the headlines of yesterday. These are not second-rate achievers--they're the best in their fields. But the applause dies; awards tarnish and achievements are forgotten. Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners.

Now, here's another quiz. See how you do on this one.

1. List a few teachers who aided your journey through school.

2. Name three friends who have helped you through a difficult time.

3. Name five people who have taught you something worthwhile.

4. Think of a few people who have made you feel appreciated and special.

5. Think of five people you enjoy spending time with.

6. Name a half-dozen heroes whose stories have inspired you.

Easier? The lesson? The people who make a difference in your life aren't the ones with the most credentials, the most money, or the most awards. No. They are the ones who care!

-- MEMORIAL DAY THOUGHTS --

(Memorial Day has passed, however, the following are timely thoughts, regardless of the date of observation.)

"Soldier, rest! Thy warfare o'er,

Sleep the sleep that knows not breaking,

Dream of battled fields no more.

Days of danger, nights of waking."

-- Sir Walter Scott

-o-

"Your silent tents of green

We deck with fragrant flowers;

Yours has the suffering been,

The memory shall be ours."

-- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

-o-

"To save your world you asked this man to die; Would this man, could he see you now, ask why?" -- Wystan H. Auden, Epitaph for an unknown soldier

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