From 2010 to 2011

It is that time of the year when it seems everyone is looking back at what was important in the past year. Reflecting on the year, it has been a very good one for me in terms of amateur radio. Here are some of the highlights.

The year started out well by guiding a group of new amateurs at the Carleton University Amateur Radio Club through their exams.  The first group passed their exams in February and they were the first of two batches of students to gain their licenses.  Also in that month I gave a talk on kit building and homebrew to the Manotick Amateur Radio Group.

In April I started a D-Star net on repeater VA3ODG.  I have not reported it here on the blog (probably will be a post in the future) but if you have a D-Star radio and want to join in it starts at 8:30am local time in Ottawa (I will let you do the calculations for your time difference) on Saturdays using VA3ODG module C.  We link through to Reflector 16B, so if you are not local that is perhaps the best way to connect in.

Also in April the 160mW from my QRSS beacon was heard in Australia.

June had the Carleton University ARC (CUARC) participating in their first Field Day. The Ottawa Valley Mobile Radio Club were welcoming and we teamed up with them for the event in the grounds of the Canada’s National Science and Technology Museum.  CUARC operated on 15m and 10m using antennas built by the club members.  The antennas performed well and  we made a number of contacts on both bands.

August I attended the first Maplecon QRP convention with Gerry, VA3GLT.  I made my first podcast too, an interview with Youkits.

In Fall there was a burst of activity working on putting together the first Ottawa D-Star Symposium.  This with done with Rick, VE3CVG, members of the Ottawa Amateur Radio Digital Group and CUARC.  The event was held at Carleton University and had excellent sessions and speakers including one from Andrew, MoGRU, who presented from the UK via an internet link.

December I helped get some external antennas set up on one of the campus buildings at Carleton University for use by CUARC. It was good to test out the HF wire antenna (one that was used at Field Day) in the RAC Winter Contest.  The operating was casual but I was pleased in the antenna performance when the first contact was a British Columbia station on 40m  SSB with just 10W from my K2.  The 1.2GHz antenna for the Icom ID-1 D-Star radio  still needs to be tested in the new year.

Throughout the year this blog has been enjoyable to write and I would like to thank all the readers and commenters. Sometimes I am busy with work or family and there are longer periods between post but I try and make posts regular. The statistics show a continued increase in post views, indeed I see that this month has the highest number of views of any month.  The blog is one of a few reposted on and at least two antenna posts are listed on

Click to view slideshow.

So 2010 was a busy year with a steady involvement with clubs and members of the local and not-so-local amateur radio community.

As for next year, I will continue my involvement with CUARC as well as the local D-Star group.  I have been asked to give a talk on D-Star at the Ottawa Amateur Radio Club in February and I would like to get to Dayton this year for Four Days in May.  I am sure many other opportunities and activities will arise too, just like they did last year.  I hope you too have an active year with amateur radio.  All the best for 2011.

Alan Steele, VA3STL, is a regular contributor to and writes from Ottawa, Ontario. Contact him at [email protected].

Leave a Comment

Subscribe FREE to's
Amateur Radio Newsletter
News, Opinion, Giveaways & More!

Join over 7,000 subscribers!
We never share your e-mail address.

Also available via RSS feed, Twitter, and Facebook.

Subscribe FREE to's
Amateur Radio Newsletter

We never share your e-mail address.

Do you like to write?
Interesting project to share?
Helpful tips and ideas for other hams?

Submit an article and we will review it for publication on!

Have a ham radio product or service?
Consider advertising on our site.

Are you a reporter covering ham radio?
Find ham radio experts for your story.

How to Set Up a Ham Radio Blog
Get started in less than 15 minutes!

  • Matt W1MST, Managing Editor

Sign up for our free
Amateur Radio Newsletter

Enter your e-mail address: