Thursday, October 8, 2009

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Who are Hams ?!?

Okay,  while waiting for some prints to get approved by our field techs (who did catch a few mistakes on my part) I had an opportunity to think a bit about "What is Ham Radio".

The ARRL has a lot of materials available to anyone, (yet targeted mainly at club PIOs) but I needed a goal in mind to help me make sense of it all.

In a diverse group of people, I've learned it's good to not discuss technology for technology's sake right off the bat.  So if I was going to homebrew a small deck of slides they would go something like this:

Slide  1: Who is a ham ?
Slide  2: What do they do ?
Slide  3: How do they do it.
Slide  4: Why bother ?
Slide  5: That License Thing.
Slide  6: Internet Links
Slide  7: Someone to call

Most anyone can make it through 7 slides without falling asleep.  More than 10 requires complimentary cokes and cookies.

Now, another thing I learned (at the phone company) is even if the boss is paid enough to cause you to  assume he is smart or important or doing something right (because he runs around town in a Porsche) he can't handle more than 3 bullet points in a slide.  No matter what.  So, I now assume none of the rest of us can either (if we could, we'd have Porsches, yeah ?)  So I take a stab at the above.

Slide  1: Who is a ham ?
* Hams come from all walks of life with all sorts of interests.  The common thread between them is that they all have assembled the components of an amateur radio station and use it to communicate with other hams without (necessarily) the commercially available telephone, television or Internet services.

Slide  2: What do they do ?
* This is a loaded question the answer is very broad and the sky's the limit.  Hams can operate equipment to send and receive voice conversations, image and data messages around town and around the world. 

Slide  3: How do they do it.
* Amateur equipment (power supplies, radios and antenna systems) range from pocket models with whip antennas ranging to desktop sets with backyard antennas.  Typically, pocket sized equipment is used to communicate with local folks with the larger installations capable (depending on weather and physics) of global communications. 

Slide  4: Why bother ?
*  Amateur radio has a proven track record for operating "when all else fails".  Other seemingly similar technologies (wireless data, cellular telephones, long distance phone networks, etc.) are dependent to varying extents on the commercial power grid, backup batteries, buried fiber optic and copper cables, so on and so forth.

* While seemingly antique in it's pure form, that simplicity is what makes ham radio work.  Voice and CW are 'lowest common denominators' that are (almost) universally understood.

* For the electronically or technically inclined, amateurs have a long heritage of experimentation.  Amateur radio operators have banded together at times to build and finance satellites, established wide-area data networks pre-Internet, bounce messages off the moon, etc.  Present work is in wi-fi networks and Internet-based methods to provide communication methods when traditional HF radio is not available.

Slide  5: That License Thing.
* In the USA, the FCC and ARRL work together to administrate a licensing scheme.  As a rule, the more tests passed and licenses obtained, the greater you're able to communicate.

Slide  6: Internet Links

Slide  7: Someone to call

Then, comes a rest break with cookies and sodas.  And if anyone comes back, we run through the deck again with added facts and terms like "VHF and HF and no-code tech, and verticals vs. dipoles vs Yagis, etc.) 

I know I painted with a broad brush to "keep it simple". 

Suggestions, comments, thoughts on elementary explanations of Ham Radio ?


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

VHF+ in Salina

Beams.  Dishes. Towers, oh my !

The antenna farm of Pete, WB0DRL, near Salina, Kansas


Check out for W5BBS / amateur radio-related news.

Better yet, contact me at with your news (club meetings, breakfasts, test sessions, nets, tailgates, so on and so forth) and we'll get it on the site.

Tell your friends to stop by too.

Thanks & vy 73

(collecting news on might be better use of it than net transcripts.  I never could get in the habit of it anyway.)

Thursday, September 17, 2009



I think it is a.....

No. They have been gone for years.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

What Is This ?

What is this ? There are these holes and all ?!?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Balloons, File Sharing, Old Satellite Dishes, Ham Radio

Passing traffic via wi-fi connection from neighboring ham to ham to ham might be viable if a disaster ever took down Cox or your Internet provider.

And these young folks did it with surplus materials.

Substitute a 4,600 ft mountain with a balloon-mounted wireless router and you could probably exceed their record of 50 miles...

Just a thought ...

if I was a Glue Dobber...

I'd build something like this:


Something interesting to release from a balloon ? :)

Monday, September 14, 2009

A Newer Take on The Ham Balloon Problem

Okay, if I separate the web-link with blank lines, I'm told it's clickable, so here goes:

Link above for NW5M's balloon project. Uses a newer, more popular microcontroller and Canon cameras among other changes.

I'll go over my take on these developments if anyone's interested. I wanted to do something like this once, but couldn't find a lot of support locally.


Boss says dig a hole...

This is way cool. M J Rainey, avid QRPer, has built himself an underground ham shack and shop.

If the neighbors let me grow up...I want one.


Sunday, September 13, 2009

Balloon Chase Hobby

Here is a very good site and quite an interesting story about a Ham Radio guy and a balloon

  1. It talks about Video

  2. LINUX Computer on a board.

  3. Balloon Launch, Chase and Recovery

  4. Shows Photos

This is a great story. Maybe one of you would like to recreate this adventure.


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

September Meeting: QSL Cards: Arctic / Antarctic Regions

I enjoyed tonight's presentation. I'm going to try and find out more about places on QSL cards that were discussed.

Until then...


September Club Meeting: Echolink

At the club meeting, an interest in Echolink was indicated again.

It might be time to revisit Echolink as the BAARC has two functioning VHF and 2 functioning UHF machines. We should be able to set up shop on one of them.

Some questions and concerns were raised:

1. SITE:
A) Tiger Hill:
pro: Internet access via City of BA
con: Internet access via City of BA (firewalls, etc.)

B) Leonard Mtn.
pro: excellent line of sight.
con: no existing data service

C) TBA: possibly Asbury UMC or BA "Towne Center" Water Tower.
pro: we have a guy "on the inside" at Asbury.
con: we need to shield the heck out of the repeater so it doesn't interrupt Sunday Service.

general feeling was that Echolink shouldn't be conducted on a "primary repeater". So that would suggest NOT .91 or .45

To satisfy that request, I was thinking 443.600 out of Leonard Mtn. But the radios we use to backhaul the audio back to someone's house (it used to be Jeff / AE5ME) would have to be in the 440 range to satisfy some FCC requirements on remote control. I don't know if that is asking for intermod issues or not considering a 443.600 XMIT frequency. We could avoid the backhaul radios by getting a computer and Internet up at Leonard. I don't know if we could set up a microwave / wi-fi shot or not. Alternately, we could backhaul at 900 MHz. Does anyone live nearby ?

Thoughts ?
Questions ?
Comments ?

September Club Meeting: Ron for PIO !!

Congrats to Ron on his appointment to the position of BAARC Public Information Officer.

Ron has some ideas about how to get our club "out in the public eye" (and ham radio too).

Let him know you're interested.


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Teletype over Amateur Radio (RTTY)

Anyone active presently on RTTY ? Guy (WB5MXO) has mentioned past work with RTTY on VHF lately. Sounded interesting. Any particular websites for such stuff ? I found this one:


Friday, August 28, 2009

Microphone Cable Information

Here is a very good site that Earl(WB5UUW) talked about on the YAH Net on Friday.
I hope you find it useful.


Food For Thought

Here is a link to a list of tools for checking your thoughts.
One of the things that we do on Ham Radio is to compare ideas that might make the load a little lighter for others. This is for discussion guaranteed proof of outcomes is included. I have used the list as a listening tool.

If you like it, let me know.

Monday, August 24, 2009

HI HI ......(How High is your IQ ?)

Dear Stan,
How high does my IQ need to be to fit in with this group of Ham Radio folks?

Dear Confused,
Don't worry about it.

Look at this...folks that study IQ are becoming confused.

click to enlarge

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Hams, Astronomy, Youtube and Facebook

While Ham might be considered to be best served with a pineapple glaze (I see that in pictures, I prefer mustard myself) I think ham radio is best served with a side or what ever else you like to do.

I've heard of
a) Hams and eggs
b) Hams and camping
c) Hams and balloons
but here is a new one:
d) Hams and Astronomy

Along these lines: A good video of one ham's telescopes and his radios. follows below:

Oh, yeah: For finding and keeping up with Hams, consider Facebook.
You can be my friend. So are a lot of other like-minded folks.
I think putting stuff on Facebook is a way to stay better organized than just emailing links.


Friday, August 21, 2009

145.450 Repeater From Above - Matt(WX5LIB)

Thanks to Matt(WX5LIB) for this photo of the Lake Bixhoma Repeater Site.

next picture is a closer picture of the antenna farm, bottom one is looking south-east down the hill. You can see the pump station sticking out in the lake.


Suitsat 2

Coming (not so) soon on 2m FM, VHF / UHF SSB and SSTV.

There is still time...

There is still time to get those 10m / 6m / 2m SSB DX stations up and going.

Sunspot peak might not be until 2014. And to think my favorite contacts were made by balloon-borne 6m end-fed Zepp for 6m. Double hop Sporadic-E from Tulsa to Arizona for what seemed like hours. That was at a Field Day with TRO at Whitesides Park. 2001 maybe. N5TEX helped us with the balloon logistics. Looking forward to those days again.


source reference:

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Broken Arrow Repeater in Bixby

Dog Gone!

Fourteen years ago my dog "Ollie" ran away from home. After about 12 years I had begin to give up hope that he would return anytime soon. Now it has been 16 years. He would be about 127 in dog years. I suspect that he is a slow mover and might be easier to catch.

If you find Ollie please call KE5Lep on 146.910 PL 88.5 for your $2.50 reward.

I would give more but ... he really wasn't a great dog. If he has gone on to his reward I don't expect that it was much of a reward.

Shirley(KE5PAQ) had some luck getting him back home by walking around the block with a piece of balogna.

Oh My!

I have a Police Photo of Ollie that might help in this last ditch effort. If this doesn't work then "Fine Business",Ollie. How's that working for you, Ollie?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Stan's Birthday

click to enlarge
What's Up with this?
Well, I seems that the stations on 146.910 will celebrate events from time to time.
Sometimes it is a Brahms Ice cream run, sometimes it is a Fox Hunt Victory, and this time it was a birthday party at the Hide Away pizza place on Lynn Lane and 71st street.
Keep your radio on and your shoes beside the door. See you next time.
Thanks to one and all for attending ...If you missed it - we owe you one.

Monday, August 17, 2009

A Story From World War II - Bob Mitchell

My good friend Bob Mitchell served as Radio Officer of a ship during World War II.

I have had the honor of spending some time with him recently.

Here is a story that he told me. I found it recently on the internet. It matches exactly the way he told it to me.

Here is history.

Click to enlarge

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

HF Antenna Tom (KE5NCP)


bottom antenna is a Tennadyne T6 for HF

next one up is a Cushcraft 26B2 for 2 meter FM/ stacked 13B2's

next one up is a Cushcraft 13B2 on Horz for 2 meter SSB

And at the top is a Tram 1481 for 2 meter/70 centemeter

hope this helps!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

DX Sherlock

Hey guys.

Check out this DX-Sherlock web-based propagation tool.

Click for North America.

Click your band. (example: 10m)

Take a look at QSOs recently reported. If you talk to someone, post using the form below.


(Jimmy KD5ZVE, told me about this.)

Saturday, August 8, 2009

2m SSB.

Well, it's been a few days now, how did folks like Jimmy's (KD5ZVE) presentation on 2m SSB ?

Anyone interested in SSB operation on these shorter wavelengths ? I think it might be a reliable way to talk simplex across town or into other regions like Springfield, Dallas, Kansas City, etc.... Seems like that isn't always possible on 10m. And you have to resort to NVIS antennas to do the same on 80m or you'll skip over your target, right ? I'm thinking that unless you're working real DX with Tropo or sporadic-E, 2m is a little more stable than HF for everyday, local use.

Anyway, let's see if we can schedule QSOs. 144.200 is calling and 144.220 and 144.250 hold the nets as I recall. I talked with Gerry tonight, and I think he is going to bring a pair of halos online soon. ( I originally bought them from Howard, WB5JIO, Downtown Tulsa, SK)

Both Howard (years ago) and Jimmy (on Monday) mentioned 200 mi. QSOs between cars @ 100 W going to hamfests on 2m SSB using the Halo antennas. These aren't big antennas. I'm sure there is a way to hide them in a neighborhood. Seems like a halo or Big Wheel (3 halos spread like a sunflower) would be the start (the perch part) of a fake bird-feeder. ;)

I ran a 2m and 440 Mhz SSB setup once for experimentation with the FO-20 Satellite five or six years ago. Made 1 contact to Tennessee and decided if I was going to get serious, I'd have to get computer assisted tuning (doppler correction) and computer assisted Yagis. But, I fell behind in the latest-greatest computers, never got my antenna tower and fell in love, oh well. I'll have time someday. Provided the kids don't break the bank. But, that exercise did give me the opportunity to talk on my 3-ele. Arrow Antenna yagi "horizontally" and use a 440 Mhz halo for receive.

But like Jimmy said, if you can get a Big Wheel or something up 15 to 30 ' that would get ya started. Maybe I'll have to give it another shot. Who's with me ??

Stay tuned Monday Night Net for more details.


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The Future of Ham Radio (where do you want to go) ?

Okay, Wade KF5IF brought up some good points last night at the Broken Arrow Amateur Radio Club. And while I probably made my usual sarcastic commentary along with them (sorry Don and Kat) , I did take them to heart.

They'll take years to implement. I think I could do some of the training of new and existing hams. After all, I've been exploring this great hobby for almost a decade.

Which leads me to my point of this post. Where area we going ? What do we want to do ? Pick a couple and leave some comments. Would you like to see most importantly:

A) Distance you can communicate increase while holding costs constant or falling.

B) Size of equipment continue to decline while holding costs constant of falling.

C) Bandwidth available to the user increase. (ex: data, video, file transfer)

D) Decreasing size of equipment.

E) Increased simplicity (home-brew ? ) of equipment.

F) Interoperability with consumer electronics (ex: USB ports, etc.)

G) Interoperability with commercial equipment (ex: APCO P25 codecs)

H) Off-grid capability.

There, eight plates of food for thought ! Lemme know and I'll write something up.


Saturday, August 1, 2009

Field Day 2009

Thanks to my friend Eli(W5PPD) for sending these photos of the 2009 Field Day.
Enjoy them.

click to enlarge

Thanks Eli

Friday, July 31, 2009

Snapshot the Day

The Dayton Hamvention seems to be one of the great events in Ham Radio. A lot of folks go. Tons of junk in the tail-gate section. Vendors galore inside. But, not everyone has a pile of surplus cash, or vacation days for this great road trip. Fortunately, there is a lot of Hamvention stuff on the Internet including a bunch of pictures on Flickr.

Without further ado, the Snapshot of the Day:

Favorite 2m Rig ?

A lot of us folks meet on the 146.910 and 145.450 repeaters pretty regularly.

That made me wonder if anyone had a favorite 2m rig.
I'll start things off. I have 2 favorite rigs. The first is one I "won" from eBay. It was an all-mode rig that came out of a guy's canoe in the Northeast supposedly. Fortunately, no real signs of corrosion. Here's an example photo:

(It's meant to be run QRP with the front antenna port, or there is a snap-on linear amp for the back of the unit.)

My other favorite rig (no tone board, so just for .45) is the Kenwood TS-700.

I drug one home from Ada Hamfest some time ago. It's older than I am. I get great comments on the audio of this rig. AM / FM / CW / SSB. Built in AC power supply. There is a minimum of high-tech parts in this thing. Weighs a ton (20 lb.)

Both these rigs have been used to call the Monday Night Nets in the past.

What do you guys run ?

73 de KD5NJR

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Ham Radio Breakfast

Hey guys, Don't forget to see Bob, Virginia, Stan and all the rest of the gang at the Saturday morning breakfast coming up at the Golden Corral at 71st and Mingo. 0800.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Repeater Work on 145.450

Click to enlarge

On Friday July 17th several Ham Radio Operators worked on the 145.450 Repeater
On site:
Earl (WB5UUW)
Guy (WB5MXO)
Stan (KE5LEP)
Ray (KE5WGA)
Jerrye (KE5VZH)
Don (KE5OMV)
Cat (KE5OMU)
Ron (KB5VDB)
John (N5TBM)

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Good luck Kevin and Jessica

Good luck Kevin (KD5RHF) and Jessica on their wedding day !!!

My wife and I gotta be home today to meet the nurse for a blood draw, to feed the little one every 2 hours ( if he likes it or not) and keep him under his UV lights..... bummer, hum !

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Listening to the Repeater

A couple of you guys have been listening in to the repeater when I've worked a station during "feeding time". Sorry for the background noise.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

KD5NJR's new harmonic

My little boy was born yesterday (6/8/09) at 4:35 pm after a long time.
He weighs 9 lbs and 8.8 oz. And he is about a 1/4-wavelength for 2m.
More to follow on my little harmonic later. Mom is doing fine.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Moon Bounce | Echoes of Apollo

Moon Bounce | Echoes of Apollo

The above link for the "Echoes of Apollo" website cites June 27th as World Moon Bounce Day.

Coordinating talent like this is a good thing. Think of it as a modern type of Field Day. After all, hams don't get to use radio telescopes in a daily basis just we don't all use emergency communications on a daily basis.

Looks like there will be ways to participate even if you don't have a super UHF station.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Upcoming Events

Hey guys,

Please leave comments to fill in the details as needed, but this Saturday is important for atleast 2 things:

"Hams 'n Eggs" Amateur Radio Breakfast -- Golden Corral. THIS Saturday. 8a. 71st & Mingo.

Foxhunt: ??? 10am

Bartlesville Bi-plane Expo. (The last one.)


How to Make a Fox Hole Radio

Hey guys,

Say you're thinking about making a project, but you're interested in if it really works first before you go through all the effort.
You might do a YouTube search. For example, for a Fox Hole Radio. Watch a few videos and see if they work well enough for your effort. For example, I learned (and expected all along) that you don't get a lot of AF gain from these units, that they basically get just 1 station (not too selective) but still a fun demo of a basic radio.

You can search for a lot more ham radio stuff too... QRP, One Tube Radios, so on and so forth. If you find anything worth mentioning, leave a reply.


Monday, May 25, 2009

Ranger 3: Facts, Discussion Forum, and Encyclopedia Article

Ranger 3: Facts, Discussion Forum, and Encyclopedia Article

Above link is for a 60's spacecraft program called Ranger. Ranger missions crashed into the moon while making live television transmissions toward the end. Idea being that even "standard definition" TV (I don't have frame rates and resolutions for this yet) was superior to the earth-based telescopic observations of the day.

Now, Ranger 3 carried a "hard lander" built of -- get this -- ordinary balsa wood.

I am going to have to check this out.

10m net

10m Fred's Memorial Net, Wed 8:pm 28.446 MHz USB K5JVS Jack

I saw this net listing on the OK Section ARRL website.

Anyone worked it ?

New Posts

If anyone is interested, I put some new stuff on my blog,

Leave a comment if you like. I'm always looking for stuff (blogs, web links, etc.)

a) topics for nets.
b) space, astronomy, aviation stuff
c) ham stuff


Monday, May 4, 2009

Propagation Alert

This from Radio Cuba's resident Ham Radio / SWL expert... 73 Scott

Special Sporadic E layer openings alert !!!

The Earth's transit right trough the debris left by Halley Comet will very likely enhance the possibilities of highly ionized clouds forming at altitudes between 90 and 150 kilometers during late May 5 , the whole day May 6 and part of May 7.
The "cometary dust origin theory of sporadic E clouds" , may see a great chance
of been confirmed, especially in the Northern Hemisphere, where the number of expected visual meteor sightings will be up to 30 an hour during the peak times on May 6, but , I must add that the chances of enhaced ionization at E layer altitudes are much higher than what can be expected from the optical observations, because small size meteors, are much more likely to create ionized patches that may combine blown by the high altitude ionospheric winds and turn into compact highly ionized clouds capable of returning back to Earth radio waves on frequencies as high as the 2 meters of 144 to 148 megaHertz amateur band.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Ham Radio Breakfast

Still on for tomorrow (Saturday May 2) morning ?

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Benton Harbor Lunch Box

Heathkit used to make these portable units for 10, 6 and 2m AM back when.

I've seen them from time to time at Hamfests, and typically (not always) they look pretty rough with either frayed or incomplete wiring harness, no mic, so on and so forth.

Anyone have a 'complete' unit ? Anyone have one on the air ?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Scott's Blog

Doesn't look like Stan has added much of late, so I'll let you guys know that I posted a bit of stuff at my blog,

Gene has some good stuff over at his site as well. Check it out, .
Shortwave listening, some new modes for FM rigs, and vertical antennas.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Hamfest Day 1

Saw a lot of good friends and tons of old junk at Hamfest this afternoon.

Leave a reply if you saw or brought something that you thought was particularly interesting.

So far, I picked up a Comet SMA24 whip antenna for HTs. Hoping to pick up the repeater better on my walks. Pack tomorrow for more trash and treasures.


Thursday, March 12, 2009

Poster for Green Country Hamfest


Tiffany made us a tri-fold poster to use at the Hamfest. Has the club name, meetings, nets, other pertinent information, etc. Should complement the banner. We can put it next, above, whatever.

If you have some photos of recent (or not) BAARC activities, please bring them and a bit of scotch tape. If we have too many photos, we can set them along the edge of the table.

I was going to print up some flyers to give away, but I'm running out of steam for this evening. If someone wants to run some off, that would be a great way to keep things fresh in one's memory after the hustle and bustle of Hamfest is gone.

See everyone tomorrow afternoon / evening, Saturday, etc.

Thanks, Scott

proposed text for flyers I didn't finish...



Club Meetings are the first Monday of the Month.
7 pm at the Community Center. 1500 S. Main in Broken Arrow.

The Saturday Morning Breakfast is held first Saturday morning of the Month.
8 am at the Golden Corral.
71st & Mingo in Tulsa.

FOXHUNTS are back!
About monthly. Saturday mornings. Details on nets.

Field Day. 4th full weekend in June.


MON: 146.910 MHz (-) 88.5 PL
8 pm. Info, Swap, Trade

WED: 146.910 MHz (-) 88.5 PL
7 pm. Youth at Heart*

FRI: 146.910 MHz (-) 88.5 PL
7 pm. Youth at Heart*

SAT: 28.355 MHz SSB simplex
7 pm. (Techs & Generals)

Also: Tulsa Tech Net

* for ages 8 to 80.


TIGER HILL 71st & Lynn Lane
146.910 MHz (- .6 MHz) 88.5 PL

TIGER HILL 71st & Lynn Lane
444.000 MHz (+5 MHz) 88.5 PL

Leonard Mountain
145.450 MHz (- .6 MHz)

Leonard Mountain
443.600 MHz (+5 MHz)

See website for repeater status

Simplex NET on 146.550

Everyone is invited to join the fun on the Simplex Net

Go to 146.55o 2M FM Saturday Night at 9:00 PM

The net doing great!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

HDTV Antenna

Here is a technical link from Butch(KD5RSS)

It might be helpful for your TV.