Posts Tagged ‘organizations’

New club in town

There's a new QRP Club, or new Yahoo Group, if you will. It's the California QRP Club and membership is open to any QRPer. Residence in the Golden State is not a prerequisite. is the link.  And as Doug Hendricks KI6DS, posted:

"The purpose and goals of the California QRP Club is to promote QRP. We don't have dues, we don't have officers, and we don't have business meetings. We do have monthly get togethers in San Jose, and we will be a co-sponsor of the qrp activities at Pacificon next year. The club will have two caretakers, Steve Smith, WB6TNL and Doug Hendricks, KI6DS. They will be responsible for the running of the club. We will not do anything that involves the exchange of money to the club. If there are expenses, Steve and Doug will pay them.

We will also issue membership numbers, only upon request. You may get yours by sending an email to directly to Steve. Do not send your request to this list. It will not be acted upon. To get your California QRP Club membership number send an email to Steve Smith at [email protected] with "CalQRP Membership number" in the subject line. Steve will assign a number to you.

I plan on doing more issues of QRPp, but it will not have a regular schedule and will be posted as a downloadable file in the file section of this list.

The first announcement that we would like to make is that the club has an Amateur Radio Club License, and the call sign is WA6GER. We are dedicated to preserving the memory and legacy of Jim Cates, and plan on activating his call at least once a month. More on that later. This was formerly the club Vanity Call Sign of NorCal but it was allowed to expire and was not renewed. When the 2 year grace period for renewal had passed, the FCC cancelled the license and WA6GER was returned to the available call sign database where anyone could have claimed it. Steve Smith did the leg work to secure the call and I want to thank him publicly for it.

Everyone is invited to join the California QRP Club, and you may do so by going to (Ed. note - see link above). and signing up."

So there you - new group in town.

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!

Peanut Power Sprint – September 27th.

The Peanut Power Sprint, the closeout of the Summer QRP Contesting/Operating season is scheduled for Sunday, September 27th.  Jim W4QO has been posting this notice on the e-mail reflectors:

The Bees have swarmed and the Skeeters have been hunted.  Now it time for a snack - The Peanut Power Sprint!

Everyone plays... Outdoors, indoors, lo/hi power, ... there is even a QRO category.
Sponsored by the North Georgia QRP Club (NoGaQrP), this sprint will be held on Sept. 27, 2015 from 4PM to 6PM EDT (Sept. 27 - 2000z to 2200z). Full rules are on the NoGaQrP website -   Your QSO will be worth more if you have a PEANUT number; assigned NEW each year (see below).

The club is making this one different from most other QRP QSO events.

1. It is open to all amateurs at any power level. This is to attract some new folks to QRP while running their comfortable power - QRO (<100 watts pls) All are welcome and there is a  QRO category. This is a FUN event. Not cut-throat!

2. It is a short sprint lasting only two hours; not tying up the entire afternoon. Although brief, run reasonable CW speeds for all to copy.

3. It starts late in the day (right after close of TX QSO party!) which will mean those on the west coast will begin at 1PM PDT, later than most contests.

4. There are categories for all situations - the prestigious category is the Peanut Power category - 1w CW or less, 2W PEP SSB or less - operating from the field! This is the GOOBER CLASS!  SOTA anyone?

5. Plaques will be awarded for each of 5 category winners (minimum 3 entries).

6. Sprint encourages SSB as well as CW contacts.  The exchange: RS(T), State/Province/Country(SPC) and your Peanut Number or Power. Call CQ NUT and have FUN!

7. Multipliers count each band/each mode. Work GA ( or any SPC) on 3 bands and 2 modes each = 6 multiplier.   Puts emphasis on switching bands and modes during the event.  Check SSB on the quarter hour. (SPC means State Province Country)

8. This will encourage activity on the 3 permitted bands - 40, 20, and 15M. There are suggested frequencies for each band/mode. Notice we are encouraging the now almost dead portion of 40M - 7061 khz and up.

9. Logs are not submitted - simply a score - but keep handy in case requested  for verification.  Watch website for results. There is an online score calculator.  It's all on the website -

10. Work stations holding a Peanut Power Number (PPN) for 7 points. Stations worked who do not hold a PPN (will send their power) yield 3 points. Yes, QRO stations can request and receive a PPN. You do not declare your category until you decide to send in your entry.   If you get halfway through and change your power, simply enter under a different category than you originally thought!

To request a PPN, send an email to NoGaNuT PeTe at [email protected]  Requests for special numbers may no longer be accommodated. See the current list via the website. Or click here to see the latest list: 

Include the word PEANUT POWER NUMBER in the title of your request please.

Dang, those goobers are tasting great!


This is a really fun Sprint/Operating Event.  If you have EVER been intimidated by QRP Contesting, this is the contest for you!

I'd like to make a special request to all the Skeeters to please buzz on over to the NoGA site and request to become a peanut for an afternoon. I guarantee you will have a blast!

72 de Larry W2LJ  - Peanut #43
QRP - When you care to send the very least!

FISTS / SKCC Joint Sprint this Saturday

Looks like I'll have to get some bug practice in before the weekend. This is going to be a toughie, though - a Saturday afternoon before Christmas. I definitely won't be able to put in a full four hours, but I am a member of both organizations and I do need to start working on my SKCC Tribune award. I've been treading water as a Centurion for years now.

72 de Larry W2LJ - FISTS 1469 - SKCC 49C
QRP - When you care to send the very least!

It was the coax!

After being stuck inside during lunchtime last week, due to workload and/or weather, I was finally able to get out today.  This was the first opportunity (if you don’t count the weekend) that I had to try out the tri-magmount with the Buddistick since changing out the coax. Well, it was the coax that was giving me fits.  With the new coax, the KX3 tuned the antenna in mere seconds and once it tuned, it stayed tuned. No phantom jumping SWR values, everything behaved nicely.

For my efforts, I was able to work W1AW/5 in Arkansas on a different band, Don K2DSV who is a fellow K2ETS Club member, as well as XE2ST, Fernando in Nogales, Mexico.  So I am considering the surgery that I performed on the antenna base to be an unqualified success.

I also spent a lot of time thinking about a posting on KB6NU’s blog about how “New Hams are Different” and the responses that Dan has received.  I think that times have greatly changed, or maybe that’s just my perception.  When I was a Novice back in the late 70s, and joined a local club (which is no longer in existence – and this may be the reason why) there was a kind of a “keep your mouth shut if you’re a Newbie” mentality going on.  New callsigns appearing at meetings or on the repeaters weren’t welcomed all that enthusiastically (as a result, that may be why I’m not real big into VHF/UHF to this very day).  I guess there was kind of a “pay your dues” mentality, back then.  For better or worse, that was the way it was. But guess what? I survived, more or less.  😉

I really believe that I saw that change in the mid 90s, though.  I joined a couple new clubs and was welcomed.  Even though I was licensed for quite a while by then, I was still a neophyte compared to the established “Old Timers” who were a large part of the membership, and I was a comparative stranger, to boot. But in both cases, I was welcomed warmly – I was not shunned, I was not looked down upon, I was accepted into the groups without question.

And that’s the way it should be.  I currently belong to three active local clubs – the K2ETS Electronic Testing Society of NJ, the W2QW Raritan Valley Radio Club as well as the NJ2SP South Plainfield Amateur Radio Club (which I helped to establish).  Since SPARC is so new, I am going to leave it out of the mix for this discussion, but the same philosophy holds there, as well.  In both K2ETS and W2QW, newcomers are welcomed enthusiastically and with open arms.  There’s no “we vs. they” mentality when it comes to new members. Everyone is encouraged to participate, and everyone is listened to. Your age, your gender, your level of experience is really of no matter.

I really don’t see any wide gulfs when it comes to “new” vs. “old” technologies, either.  Those who primarily operate HF only seem to peacefully co-exist with those who like to experiment and build and toy around with Arduinos, Raspeberry Pi’s and the digital voice and data modes.  In fact, I see a lot of the groups co-mingling and getting pointers, answers to questions and operating tips from each other.  Just the way it should be.

Newcomers are welcomed for their new ideas and enthusiasm while “Old Timers” are respected for their experience and built up wealth of tribal knowledge – again, just as it should be.  Guess I’ve been very fortunate to not be involved with “cliquey” organizations. Hopefully, that is becoming everyone else’s experience as well.

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP – When you care to send the very least!

Some thoughts

Argh! If my head wasn’t screwed on, I would probably forget that, too!

Rem K6BBQ wanted me to mention that he has added a SOTA category to this year’s inaugural Scorch Your Butt Off contest, coming this July. If you activate a SOTA summit, you can claim an additional 100 points to your SYBO score. Please keep in mind that this has NOTHING to do with your SOTA activation points, this is for your SYBO score only.

I had my last Pastoral Council meeting tonight, so I didn’t get the chance to put any more radials down this evening. I have served on the Parish Pastoral Council for the last four years. Two meetings a month, all year around. That may not sound like much, but there are always many peripheral duties involved, as well as peripheral events where attendance was not mandatory, but desired. The normal term of service is three years, but I was asked to, and served for four. Now that these are going to be over, I will be able to attend Amateur Radio club meetings again. I hesitated to in the past, as I always tried to keep away from being out of the house multiple nights a week. To say my attendance of club meetings was sporadic is being generous. It was, for all intent and purpose, non-existant.

This Friday evening is an Electronic Testing Society of NJ meeting. Fancy name for a repeater club meeting, eh? The group is better known as the Greenbrook repeater group, and the meetings are always the last Friday of the month. Even though this would mean being out two evenings this week, I am going to make a best effort to attend, so as to get back into the swing of things.

I also hope to attend a lot more VE sessions when license exam season starts up again in earnest this September. I have always enjoyed being a VE, going back to the days when I regularly attended and volunteered at the sessions that were offered by the Raritan Bay Radio Amateurs.

I had to go to a remote site at work today, so I didn’t get in my lunchtime QRP session, so no photos today, maybe tomorrow, weather permitting (but alas, it seems there’s a 75% chance of rain for tomorrow).

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP – When you care to send the very least!

Bunch o’ stuff

There’s a bunch of stuff I wanted to cover today.

The first is totally unrelated to Ham Radio; but I found it fascinating.  Today, the Congressional Medal of Honor was awarded posthumously to Fr. Emil Kapaun, a Catholic priest and Army Chaplain who courageously served our country in WWII and the Korean Conflict.  He died a POW at the hands of the Chinese in North Korea.  The story of how he conducted himself as a POW and as a leader of men is, to use an overused word, awesome (in the truest sense of the word). After finishing reading the eight part story, all I could think of was “Wow!”.  Follow this link for the story about the humble, brave and holy man :

Secondly – this comes from the “I ordered me one” department.  The Four State QRP Group introduced a new kit today. I immediately ordered one. It’s called the “Force Link” but is spelled 4S-Link.  It is an interface between your radio and computer for the digital modes. All you need in one totally complete kit for $40.  You can’t beat that with a stick!

It was designed by Dave Cripe NMØS and if it’s like everything else that the Four State QRP Group offers, it will be a home run.  I would suggest ordering early before the first run gets all sold out.
Thirdly – Is it just me, or can’t anyone think of something better to do with $120.00?   Pardon me for saying so; but I have a hard time believing that this is worth it.  I could be wrong though (pssst ….. that’s been known to happen – a lot!).
Lastly, I was looking through the ARRL’s Webpage today and was looking at the list of QRP DXCC awards given out.  I was surprised that I recognized so many call signs and names.  Either I have personally worked these QRPers, or I know them from various postings to the various QRP e-mail reflectors. Here’s the list of call signs that hit my eye:
WA9ETW (listed as WA9ET – Mark, they have you listed incorrectly.)
WB2LQF (listed as WB2LQ – Stan, they have you listed incorrectly)
I think this tallied out to be about a fifth of all the call signs listed there. I’m sure a lot of you recognize a lot of these calls too, as they are all pretty active QRPers.
Anyway, that’s it from me for tonight. I’m going to head down to the basement and see what’s what on the bands.
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP – When you care to send the very least!

Club 72 QRP Marathon

April marks the beginning of the Club 72 QRP Marathon. This is not a contest, but is a QRP DX operating activity. In a nutshell, it’s basically a friendly competition to see how you can do against other QRPers on a sort of a “miles per Watt” basis.

I had two QRP DX QSOs tonight. One with EA8BVP on 20 Meters, which was a 2X QRP QSO, and one with HR9/WQ7R on 10 Meters, where I was the lone QRP station.

QSOs are permitted on any HF band, 160 through 10 Meters. You can enter your best DX QSO per band, per day for the entire month of April. All the calculations are figured out for you. All you need to enter is the QSO date and time, the calls (yours and the station you worked), the Maidenhead locators for both stations, and the output power of both stations.

So far, out of 16 stations competing, I am in 11th place. I think it’s pretty obvious that the leaders need not fear me. So far, I am the only stateside station competing.

This is more than anything, a personal challenge to get on the air and work as much QRP DX as possible. I have no idea how I will end up, but it will be a fun and interesting journey.

You do not have to be a Club 72 member to participate, but membership is free, so why not look into it. You can simply Google “Club 72 QRP” and you will get the hyperlink to the Website. Normally, I would provide the link for you, but I am typing this on my Android tablet, and providing a link is not as simple a task as it would be were I at my desktop computer.

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP – When you care to send the very least!

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