QCARC Calendar

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QC Weather

Severe Thunderstorm Watch

Issued:
3:03 PM EDT on August 21, 2018
Expires:
10:00 PM EDT on August 21, 2018
Thunderstorm
Tuesday 08/21/2018 80%
Thunderstorm
Heavy thunderstorms. Lows overnight in the mid 60s.
Chance of Rain
Wednesday 08/22/2018 40%
Chance of Rain
Cloudy with showers. High 72F. Winds WNW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.
Clear
Thursday 08/23/2018 10%
Clear
Mostly sunny skies. High 74F. Winds WNW at 5 to 10 mph.
Quad-County Weather Page

QCARC Fall Picnic – September 8

September 8, 2018
11:00 amto3:00 pm

QCARC Fall Picnic, 4453 PA-310 (3.5 miles south of Reynoldsville Unimart on PA-310
(Reynoldsville-Punxsutawney Road) at Ed Golla’s QTH. Look for Club sign at driveway. Thanks to the generosity of Ed Golla, Jr. K3AHS, we have been invited to return to the home of so many happy ham radio activities.

Everyone is invited — Club members or not, hams or not. As with all of our activities this is Family Friendly! There will be free hot dogs and burgers, along with chips, soft drinks and condiments provided by the Club. If you wish, you may bring food to share, but it’s not a requirement. This will be a wonderful opportunity to spend some time with your ham radio friends, old and new. Please plan on attending.

Directions

From Reynoldsville: Take PA-310 south for 3.5 miles. Watch for the Quad-County sign on the right at the driveway (1.8 miles beyond the Lakelawn Cemetary entrance). Talk-in on the 147.315 Quad-County repeater.

From Punxsutawney: Take PA 310 north for 9.0 miles. Watch for the Quad-County sign on the left at the driveway (2.1 miles beyond the Amish Restaurant / old PA-952 intersection). Talk-in on the 147.315 Quad-County repeater.

Get Directions

GPS Coordinates:

  • 41.062992,-78.927251 (driveway)
  • 4366 Pennsylvania 310, Reynoldsville, PA 15851
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Public Service Event: Baker Trail UltraChallenge 2018

August 25, 2018

btultra

The 2018 Baker Trail Ultra-marathon will be held starting at 6:30 AM Saturday August 25, 2018.

This year will be on the “central section” of the trail (Summerville to Smicksburg).  Here is a link for information and to sign up:

  https://www.rachelcarsontrails.org/events/ultrachallenge/uc18                  Scroll to the bottom of the page.  

Map of the race:  https://www.rachelcarsontrails.org/events/ultrachallenge/uc18/ultrachallenge2018.pdf

Please mark your calendars, and plan to help provide amateur radio public service communications for a fun event.

This is a 50 (FIFTY) mile ultra marathon through some fairly rugged terrain, that has limited to NO cellular coverage. This is a public service event where Amateur Radio IS vital to relay information for logistical reasons, and for runner accountability and safety.

This year there are 9 checkpoint or aid stations plus the ending point at a farm just outside Smicksburg, PA.     This is a fun, fairly easy to work event.

You can bring some food & water if you wish. Each point has food & water/Gatorade for the runners which you are welcome to partake. There are porta-john facilities at most points as well.

As their website states ” What’s in it for a volunteer? As a thank-you, all volunteers receive a coveted Marshal t-shirt and the gratitude of many strangers!  It is also provides good experience for amateurs that will aid in a handling a potential emergency.

Hope to see you there!!

 

Any questions, contact me at ka3ycb at arrl dot net Thank you!

 

Kevin Snyder, KA3YCB

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On-line Radio Wave Propagation Course

Sky, space, and surface waves

An interesting and informative course is available from Comet/MetEd titled Radio Wave Propagation. The course web-site: https://www.meted.ucar.edu/training_module.php?id=1394#.Wylt6Rwnb4Y

If you are relatively new to amateur radio do not be concerned with the technical aspect of understanding all of the details and terminology. You may be surprised that many of the graphics and audio explanations that are given will definitely provide you with a greater knowledge of what goes on with the signals radiated to and from your antenna, even without getting wrapped up in the technical terminology. I sincerely believe that you will learn some interesting aspects relating to amateur radio which will give you a better understanding of the why and how radio signals work.

This course is also for the veteran amateur radio operator. There is plenty content that will likely get you thinking and recalling some of the information you may have learned years ago.

There are quizzes during and at the end of course. You can take them but again do not get overly concerned with getting all the correct answers. Then again, you may be surprised at what you have learned! Passing the final quiz will net you a printable certificate of completion.

This course has great graphics with very good explanations, turn your speakers on. Give yourself about 1.5 hours for the course and quizzes. You can’t beat this education, at no charge!

You will need to register to create an account to take any of the MetEd courses. Radio Wave Propagation is only one of many other informative topics, be sure to check the list of available courses.

Layers of the Ionosphere

“The source of this material is the COMET® Website at http://meted.ucar.edu/ of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), sponsored in part through cooperative agreement(s) with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC). ©1997-2017 University Corporation for Atmospheric Research. All Rights Reserved.”   (Posted due to use of the graphics)

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Paul Silinsky K3PS – Silent Key

It is with deep sadness we report the passing of Paul Silinsky K3PS.

Dr. Paul Stephen Silinsky K3PS of Ashland, Ohio, formerly of DuBois Pennsylvania, died following a brief illness on Saturday, May 5, 2018. He was Lecturer at The Ohio State University — Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster, Ohio, and served as Adjunct Faculty at Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio and North Central State College in Mansfield, Ohio. He managed the family business, Keystone Electric Motor Repair Co. in DuBois, before moving to Ohio.

He was born in DuBois May 12, 1948, the son of Stephen A. and Connie I. (Zaykosky) Silinsky. He was a graduate of Central Catholic High School in DuBois, Pennsylvania, and graduated Cum Laude from The Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a BS in Physics. He received Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from West Virginia State University for his work in Solid State Physics.

He retired from the United States Naval Reserve with the rank of Commander, and served in the Civil Air Patrol as a pilot and Squadron Commander, retiring as Lieutenant Colonel.

He was a licensed Radio Amateur beginning in 1962 with the callsign KN3ZDR, and later K3ZDR and K3PS. He was a founding member of the Quad-County Amateur Radio Club in DuBois, and was a long-serving officer, performing the duties of President, Secretary, and Treasurer during the first 20 years of the club’s history.

He was responsible for the Quad-County repeater, WR3AGV (later K3PS) and served as an officer of the Western Pennsylvania Repeater Council.

He is survived by his wife, Tonda Nalle Silinsky, and is remembered by his many students and friends. Private funeral arrangements in Ashland, Ohio are incomplete.

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WIRES-X , The New Kid on the Block

This article was originally posted January 15, 2016

Just above the horizon – WIRES-X! Recently you may have heard some rather odd noises and unlikely QSOs taking place on the N3QC, 147.315 repeater. The latest update to our repeater was added January 12, 2016 when the Yaesu Wires-X Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) was added. More information will follow as we decipher some of the information and operational aspects of this new mode.NodeQSLScreen2

In case you didn’t hear, one of the first QSOs was a 3,565 mile digital contact with a station in England. The English ham was traveling to his home QTH while we were heading down the road in Du Bois, after the brainstorming session of getting the WIRES-X operational. Seeing the information showing a station that was just over 3500 miles away displayed on the radio’s display was quite a surprise!

The contacts are not totally automatic, you actually have to initiate a connection with one of the many WIRES-X nodes around the world. The connection can be made with either a Yaesu FTM-400 in digital mode or, as it it setup on the 147.315 repeater, any analog FM two-meter transceiver with a DTMF keypad (otherwise know as a touch-tone pad) connected to the transceiver. The digital connection to WIRES-X on the repeater is not available as it is set for analog only so that all can use it. You need to know the node number of the location that you want to connect, enter that on the DTMF keypad and the connection should be established. The digital mode displays much more information and has much more utility as well but as mentioned the digital radio is not needed, even a hand-held 2 meter rig can activate and use the system.

This is just a brief overview of the WIRES-X system, there will be much more to come on this website and at the QCARC regular meetings. Stay tuned for some very interesting experiences with WIRES-X!

 

January 16 article addition

I expect there are more questions about WIRES-X, since the announcement at the January Club meeting. Even though I was half of the team that set it up, I still have questions. The best place to begin to learn about the operation is to go directly to the Yaesu WIRES-X web site. Toward the left top of the page you will notice several tabs to connect to information that will better describe what WIRES-X is all about. The member log-in is for registered node users, you don’t need to worry about that part.

The three main information tabs:
The “What is WIRES-X?” tab gives an overview of the system.
The “User page” tab has a very good description, with good pictorials, of the way the system operates. Keep in mind this shows a digital radio operation but it is informative for both digital and analog modes.
The “WIRES-X ID list” tab will take you to the page that lists all of the WIRES-X nodes around the world and you’ll be able to see if there are any located near a city that you may want to talk to. You can sort the lists by clicking on the header for each column: call sign, city, state, country. Keep in mind the node list changes everyday as new nodes are registered.

The 147.315, N3QC repeater WIRES-X system is operating in the analog mode so that everyone can use it.

Stay tuned for more information as it relates to the N3QC/R WIRES-X system.

 

January 21, 2016 article addition

The WIRES-X room node will be connected for the time being. This should enable any one who connects to be able to more easily to use the system. To connect to a node room at a distant location, you will need a DTMF, touch-tone pad, on your microphone or hand-held, then you will need to know the node room number, available on the Yaesu WIRES-X web site . Remember to select the WIRES-X ID list tab to view the node number list.

 

February 3, 2016 article addition

So far the WIRES-X connection has served us well. I think that one of the biggest advantages that I’ve heard is that folks who may have moved from the area may now have the opportunity to get into the local repeater and talk to others they know. This has been proven out with K3AHS, Ed who is able to get into the 147.315 repeater, from his home in Texas, to check into the Sunday net and at other times to talk to hams who are in the area that he grew up.

The local room node is still connected, no issues appear to have resulted in the full time connection. In order to connect to another node you first need to disconnect from the local room by pressing the ” * ” touch-tone pad button. Then listen for the disconnect acknowledgement of an “H” in CW (4 dots, they’re sent fast). Once you hear the “H” enter the node room number of the distant location with a leading ” # “, via the touch-tone pad, to connect then talk to hams from that area.  Remember to read up on the information contained in the above links. This is a system where skimming or guessing just will not work, you have to play by the WIRES-X rules! Remember to play by the FCC rules too and identify when connecting to the nodes.

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I Have My Amateur Radio Operator License – Now What

This question often occurs with newly licensed radio amateurs, and may occur from time to time with those who have been licensed for a few years. One of your first avenues to find out an answer to a question may be your local amateur radio club. Often times there are members of the local club who can give an authoritative answer to your questions as well as direct you to periodicals whether a print version or online to qualify what they tell you and provide even more information. Of course, if you want, you can just jump online and find out some information to your questions but remember you may still need some clarification to the answers you find and again that is where the knowledge of long time radio amateurs can help clear up your new questions.

Doctor_is_In_Podcast_Icon_2One of the online resources which may be of interest is the “ARRL The Doctor is In”  podcast. You do not need to register or be an ARRL member to listen to these informative programs. Direct your browser to http://www.arrl.org/doctor . This is an audio presentation that you can listen to over your computer or tablet. There is an archive of a number of topics from previous episodes, listed toward the bottom of the page. Listening to these will likely generate even more questions but it shows you are learning and are interesting in learning! Take those questions to your local club or find an amateur radio operator who has some background relative the topic of you question.

You may have noticed that I tend to stress that you should talk to someone who is knowledgeable. Too often folks tend to have their personal perspectives color answers on given issues which may still be 100% accurate but since you are asking you likely will have a bit of a problem weeding out the biased answers, wrong answers and technically correct answers. The person you are getting your information from sometimes will say that a certain answer is their personal feelings toward a topic and then further inform you of where their perspective is coming from. Consider that the perspective may come from a personal experience, sometimes with very interesting and informative explanations!

This is only a couple ideas of what to do as a newly licensed amateur radio operator. The hobby is very diverse in what you can get involved in. For starters please give the podcast a try, it may surprise you it what is available to learn from it. Along with the podcast remember there is likely an amateur radio club reasonably close to you where you can find answers to your questions as well as meet others who are in the same hobby.

 

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Updated QCARC Net Format

Hi folks, by clicking on the Club logo below, you will find the current net format to be used for the VHF and UHF nets.

This format was first used for the February 19, 2017 VHF and UHF nets and is available for download so that anyone can run the net.

Running the net may not flow easily if it is your first time but after a couple times, running the net will likely be second nature. Thank You and Good Luck.

Click the NET FORMAT icon to download the file.

Corrected version: 3/26/2017

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12 VDC Power Control

  Many amateur radio operators have equipment operating on 12 VDC power supplies. There are times that the equipment needs to quickly switch to a 12 volt battery back-up. There is a very easy way to accomplish this without any intervention needed to switch back and forth from the AC operated power supply and the battery […] […]

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Amateur Radio Clubs, They’re All Over The Place

  Amateur radio clubs are all over the place, some make their presence known while others seem to hide from the amateur radio world. There are different reasons amateur radio clubs exist. Some appear to be very focused as to their reason for existence, while others try to be the club for all reasons. Some clubs […] […]

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Yaesu FT-991 A huge step for mankind….

Hello again It was a while ago since I wrote anything here, but now I really have something to write about! As maybe some of you know, I took the step, and bought a new radio, the Yaesu FT-991. It is an all band all mode transceiver incl C4FM, where all the best parts from Yaesu’s more […] […]

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Powerpole® Crimp Tool Review

For many hams the go-to 12 VDC connector is the Anderson Powerpole®. I feel the same, this connector is the only one that makes sense for convenience and durability of connection among my own radios and if the need arises other power supplies. This form of 12 VDC power connection really makes the issue of […] […]

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What About Inversions

Lately many of us have heard stations from rather distant areas on the 147.315 repeater. It is interesting to hear those stations that we normally do not hear but often it is just due to a weather phenomenon called and inversion. I expect that some amateurs sit back and wonder just what is this inversion […] […]

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