Posts Tagged ‘Radiosport’

A video about ARDF (Radio Orienteering)

Whether you call it Amateur Radio Direction Finding (ARDF), Radio Orienteering, Fox or Bunny Hunting

The feature speaker at our May 2024 meeting was Robert Frey WA6EZV. Robert spoke on ARDF - Radio Orienteering - Fox (or Bunny) Hunting. Robert was first licensed in 1968, and his interests include DX  and ARDF, as an on-foot foxhunter, for over 20 yrs. He was member of the US ARDF National Team in 2000, 02, 04, and 06 competing in China, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic and South Korea.

The presentation was recorded via Zoom so please excuse the video quality which is less than our usual presentations.

Robert Frey WA6EZV

We have documented some of our own SARC  Foxhunts in years past, including this locally developed 80m fox receiver:


~ John VE7TI

Working POTA: A beginner’s guide and video


SARC in the park!

We had an interesting workshop on Saturday, September 16, 2023.  'SARC in the Park' was a presentation by Dmitry VA7DVO for our members interested in POTA activations. You will find more about getting started in POTA at their website, and in our free digital magazine 'The Communicator'.

With an easy to build and inexpensive segmented 5-band wire dipole antenna, we made several of the 17m SSB POTA contacts shown in this video, including Switzerland, Italy and with a mobile station in Northern England.

The antenna plan is at: on page 45.

Dmitry VA7DVO presenting POTA at the OTC

The on-site demonstration took place at Serpentine Fen Wildlife Refuge

Alex VA7PVC, Dmitry VA7DVO , and Leandro VE7LSI at Serpentine Fen

Here is the presentation on video and a look at the activation

Do you want to know what else is happening at SARC?

All our events are now available through our 'live' calendar at:


ARRL DX (SSB) Contest


Another successful event

I think we made a commendable showing this weekend,  thanks to all.  Statistics below and log attached.

Thanks to all participants and especially the new guys, Doug and Larry, who jumped in got their feet wet.  

The bands were open although a recent solar storm could have had an impact. Most remarkable was 10m which was wide open worldwide on Sunday morning. The best contact of the event was Namibia, V55Y, by John VE7TI, on Sunday afternoon 10m. Also Reunion Island FR8TZ off the SE coast of Africa.  This is a good way to learn your geography!


80 Meter ARDF (Fox) Receivers

Better than ever! 

Amateur Radio direction finding (ARDF), also known as Fox Hunting has become easier and more exciting using 80m. More and more kids are participating in our annual event and learning about radio. No transmitter, so no license required. 

See the 'How-to' video at

This is a project by Surrey Amateur Radio Communications in support of the hobby

Remembering Jim Smith VE7FO – SK

 We have lost another of the 20%

Looking back, it is ironic that Jim wrote the following about Brett Garrett VE7GM when Brett passed away in August 2018

"They often say that 20% of a given membership do 80% of the work... Brett was one of the 20%, no, more like 5%. An active member of both the Surrey Amateur Radio Club (SARC) and Surrey Emergency Program Amateur Radio (SEPAR), Brett freely shared his knowledge and led Surrey Amateurs to two very successful Field Days."

I can attest to the same about Jim Smith VE7FO and his involvement with VECTOR and SARC.

Jim VE7FO is now a Silent Key

I first became aware of Jim when I laid the groundwork for the Vancouver Emergency Community Telecommunications ORganization (VECTOR) around 1999. Jim lived in the Dunbar area of Vancouver, and I became aware of his involvement with the Point Grey club, and that he was very knowledgeable about HF.

Jim was an avid contester who enjoyed working all modes -- especially CW and RTTY. A true mentor at heart, he often hosted "newbies" at his Vancouver home to introduce them to contesting. Many a new contester was given real experience operating "in the fray" and encouraged to keep honing their skills.

That knowledge translated into a very successful series of first Field Days for VECTOR. Jim also took on the project of planning the HF tower and antennas at e-Comm, the regional 9-1-1 and dispatch centre. That facility also houses the Vancouver EOC and its Amateur Radio component. Jim was a terrific resource in suggesting what might and might not work for that location, and he got that tower completed and functional. It was also Jim who persuaded me to look at offering our own Basic Amateur Radio classes. Well... 22 years later we are still offering them with the same basic content that we worked on back then, except now they are provided by Surrey Amateur Radio Communications (SARC), on-line, with successful students across Canada and even graduates abroad.

VECTOR Field Day (about 2003) Jim VE7FO as Station Manager in the new VECTOR bus.
Fred VE7CX in the foreground.

Around the time that I left VECTOR for the SARC group in 2004, Jim decided that he too would become a member of SARC. What followed was a mentorship program to introduce new members to contesting, one of Jim's passions. I spent many hours at his QTH working various contests under Jim's expert tutelage.

Myself (VE7TI) and Jim VE7FO. I'm being taught the fine points of contesting.

In one of many articles written for our SARC newsletter 'The Communicator', Jim wrote:

"My own involvement with SARC started when I was recruited by John VE7TI, as a Field Day operator. There are many enjoyable ways of conducting FD which range from everyone sitting around the BBQ, telling stories and making a few contacts to the hard-core contest style where everybody goes all out to WIN. I was told that it would be a hard core, win for Canada situation.  Being a hard-core contester myself I took the bait.

Well, it turned out that the operators, while enthusiastic, didn't have the HF contest experience necessary to achieve the goal.  Nonetheless, it was obvious that the potential was there so, once FD was over, I joined the Club and made a FD training proposal to the Exec with the goal of winning for Canada, which was accepted. 

This training started in October and ran until next year's FD.  It consisted of many formal training sessions including classroom style and participation in the major contests, during which the ops received coaching on the operating techniques for maximizing the number of contacts per hour.

This would be a very significant investment of time for the trainees. This "Get Your Feet Wet" program to provide a low commitment introduction to contesting so that they could see whether or not they liked it."

Jim was instrumental as well in the team organizing what was probably SARC's best scoring Field Day ever. It was in 2015 and, encouraged by Jim, Brett and Stan VA7NF, the Field Day Committee decided that operating QRP might put us in a better scoring position than our usual high power entry.

It took quite a lot of persuasion, but in the end, it was indeed to be QRP. Jim's specialty was consulting propagation predictions and other data to see what we might be able to do with just 5W.  Hoo boy!!  With some adjustment to our antenna lineup, he suggested that we could do very well indeed.

Did we?  We sure did.

Shattered the Canadian record for all categories.

Out of 2,719 FD stations in the US and Canada in 2015, some with more than 10 transmitters and most running 100W, we ranked #91 with our 3 transmitters and 5W.

Altogether a VERY significant achievement which any club would be proud of.

Wouldn't have happened without Jim (or Brett)

The 2015 winning QRP Field Day crew.

It may not be common knowledge that Jim was responsible for a lot of improvements to the premier Amateur Radio Contesting software N1MM+. As an expert contester Jim was able to make suggestions to the programmers that made the software the contesting leader it is today.

Jim always had a liking for analytics, and he took the lead in creating 'Station Manager' training. This role is as important to getting the maximum number of points in a contest as it would be in a real emergency, ensuring that critical traffic got through. The role includes selecting the most useful bands according to shifting propagation, switching antennas, and to assigning operators, so he was constantly monitoring rates, band conditions/solar conditions, greyline, run rates, etc. Everything was graphed and plotted.

Jim was also an active member of ORCA DX and Contest Club, and of the BC DX Club.
As the BC coordinator for the Pacific Northwest Challenge, for many years he looked after the collection of scores for the inter-club contest trophy -- the Pacific Northwest Cup -- and was a frequent attendee at club meetings.

We will miss you, Jim.

Thank you for all that you taught me and others.

We were very fortunate to have had you as a member.

Now Jim is gone


Rest in peace.

~ John VE7TI

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