QCARC Calendar

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QC Weather

Chance of a Thunderstorm
Saturday 08/19/2017 80%
Chance of a Thunderstorm
Cloudy early, then thunderstorms developing this afternoon. Gusty winds and small hail are possible. High 78F. Winds W at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 80%.
Partly Cloudy
Sunday 08/20/2017 10%
Partly Cloudy
Partly cloudy skies. High 82F. Winds W at 5 to 10 mph.
Clear
Monday 08/21/2017 10%
Clear
Mostly sunny skies. High around 85F. Winds SW at 5 to 10 mph.
Quad-County Weather Page

Latest News

he 2016 Baker Trail Ultra-marathon will be held starting at 6:30 AM Saturday August 26, 2017. This year will be on the "northern section" of the trail (Cook Forest to Brookville).  Here is a link for information and to sign up: http://www.rachelcarsontrails.org/bt/ultrachallenge/uc17    Scroll to the bottom of the page. Please mark your ...

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Amateur Radio Parity Act Moves Into The Senate

Amateur Radio Parity Act Moves Into The Senate

  This important piece of legislation that may very well have an effect on more amateur radio operators than what you may first  expect, has moved into the Senate. The legislation has a history of bi-partisan support but we still need to keep aware of what is occurring with the bill ...

Read More

SKYWARN TRAINING – WORTH YOUR TIME

SKYWARN TRAINING - WORTH YOUR TIME

Sometimes things do not all ways as they appear. SkyWarn training may conjure up ideas of intense detailed training for the likes of those who are meteorologists.  No so! This training is for the everyday person on the street, so to say. The training gives the everyday person the background to ...

Read More

Clearfield County SkyWarn® Training Scheduled

Clearfield County SkyWarn® Training Scheduled

The SkyWarn presentation has been rescheduled for July 19, 2017. This training is open to amateur radio operators as well as the general public. It is not required but if amateur radio operators could, also email me if  you anticipate attending at: “bryan at wa3ufn dot com”. Since I initiated the planning ...

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North Western PA Tornado

Severe Weather Awareness Week started a bit early for folks in North Western PA. April 20, 2017 brought an EF0 tornado to Mathews Run in Warren County, just north west of Youngsville, PA. Fortunately there were no injuries or serious damage from the short lived tornado. Details of the tornado can ...

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SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK APRIL 24 – 28, 2017

SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK APRIL 24 – 28, 2017

Since the National Weather Service outline for Severe Weather Week encompasses the weather that we encounter in our area, it might just be a great idea to check the State College, NWS website (http://www.weather.gov/ctp/SevereWeatherAwarenessWeek) for some important information. The information on the web pages just happen expand on the April ...

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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 ...

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Desktop Wallpaper, 4x3, on green

April 2017 Parasitic Emission

In a shocking development, Joe W3BC has finally come to his senses and put out a modest but informative edition of the Parasitic Emission newsletter. You may download it here: Parasitic Emission, Volume 43, Number 1, April 2017

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Pennsylvania Flood Safety Awareness Week

The National Weather Service Flood Safety Awareness Week Begins March 27. Considering we experience flooding in our area rather often, it is likely worth your time to check out the National Weather Service flood safety week web page at http://www.weather.gov/ctp/floodSafetyWeek The week starts out with information on the continuing effort ...

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Please Keep Fire Hydrants Clear

I know this is not directly related to amateur radio but it is directly related to neighborhood safety. It may even be directly related to your safety!

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Basic SKYWARN in Punxsutawney

National Weather Service Pittsburgh will be conducting a BASIC SKYWARN course at the Punxsutawney Weather Discovery Center 201 N Findley St on Thursday April 27, 2017 starting at 6PM. To register, email marlene@weatherdiscovery.org This course is open to ANYONE interested in Weather. Hams are encouraged to attend. If you are a current ...

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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 ...

Read More

Get Weather Ready Before A Tornado

Spring really is not too far away and with the change of seasons some rather interesting but destructive weather can occur. One of the more serious weather phenomenons we have to occasionally deal with is the tornado. While not a frequent issue, it is one that we need to be ...

Read More

NOAA’s  National Weather Service Pages Are Changing

NOAA's National Weather Service Pages Are Changing

If there is anything true about our world it is change! The changes on the NWS pages has been moved to April, as the information states.: "Effective April 4, 2017, NWS will implement the next version of the forecast pages. Highlights will include a standardized look and feel, a mobile-ready landing ...

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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 ...

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QCARC Events

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Amateur Radio Parity Act Moves Into The Senate

HR555_S1534

 

This important piece of legislation that may very well have an effect on more amateur radio operators than what you may first  expect, has moved into the Senate. The legislation has a history of bi-partisan support but we still need to keep aware of what is occurring with the bill as well as contact our representatives and encourage their support by clicking on the link directly below.

https://arrl.rallycongress.net/ctas/urge-us-senate-to-support-amateur-radio-parity-act

 

For the latest information on this legislation and information on the best way to request your representative’s support, check out  http://www.arrl.org/amateur-radio-parity-act 

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SKYWARN TRAINING – WORTH YOUR TIME

Sometimes things do not all ways as they appear. SkyWarn training may conjure up ideas of intense detailed training for the likes of those who are meteorologists.  No so! This training is for the everyday person on the street, so to say. The training gives the everyday person the background to recognize and report on severe weather issues that may impact themselves, families, friends and neighbors. Since severe weather is one of those events that can happen to everyone, not just someone else, getting the training to help prevent injuries and maybe even damages can be an asset. Whether you are part of an organized group that participates in SkyWarn or an individual who would rather do it on their own, you need the training to pass along the appropriate information to the Weather Service Forecast Offices, or to be able to protect yourself. The training that is made available is not something intuitive that we are born with.

-images-wrn-Infographics-lightning_temperaturewrn-Infographics-tornado_safe_placesConsider these two topics, tornadoes and thunderstorms, that are covered in the SkyWarn training. Sure seem interesting don’t they! Not all that difficult to learn and understand just the main points and at times some added details about these weather events that we see in our general area.

Register by sending an email advising that you want to attend the SkyWarn training to the Clearfield County Assistant EMA Director at:  “smignot  at  clearfield911  dot  com”     The training is scheduled for July 19, 2017 at 6:30 PM at the Clearfield County 911 Center at 911 Leonard Street just east of Clearfield off Rte. 322. Talk-in on the 147.315 repeater.

 

 

 

CQ – Field Day QCARC

This year the QCARC Field Day site will be at the Sandy Valley Community Church, located just off Rte. 950, between Falls Creek and Reynoldsville.

CLICK THE MAP FOR LARGE DISPLAY —                                                                                                         — CLICK THE RED FD 17 LOGO FOR NATIONAL EVENT INFO —

2017 FD LocationPrint

Clearfield County SkyWarn® Training Scheduled

The SkyWarn presentation has been rescheduled for July 19, 2017. This training is open to amateur radio operators as well as the general public.
skywarn-wtmIt is not required but if amateur radio operators could, also email me if  you anticipate attending at: “bryan at wa3ufn dot com”.
Since I initiated the planning I would like to know how many are planning to attend, just curious. Thanks!

See the following information from Peter Jung, Warning Coordination Meteorologist, State College :

1 – SkyWarn Training: July 19th at 6:30 pm.
2 – Location: 911 Leonard Street in Clearfield, the Clearfield County 911 Center.
3 – Register by sending an email to: Scott Mignot at “smignot  at  clearfield911  dot  com”

Registration in this method is important so that we can get an accurate count of who will attend, and a way to directly reach out via email should we need to do a last minute cancellation or change.

GENERAL REMINDERS FOR SKYWARN CLASSES

  • Classes are free and open to the public
  • Attendees under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a parent/guardian
  • Classes typically last about 90 minutes
  • Bring a pen/pencil to the class
  • If possible, bring the Latitude and Longitude of your home
    (see this page to determine your coordinates:  http://www.latlong.net/convert-address-to-lat-long.html )
  • Current spotters bring your old ID Card or Spotter Number

 

ATTENTION – QCARC Officers & Exec Board Members

As an Exec Board member I am requesting an Exec Board meeting, prior to the regular Club meeting June 16 if at all possible.

Please advise me ASAP what may be the best date and time, if any in particular, for you to attend an Exec Board meeting before the next regular meeting. I anticipate the meeting to be at a location to be determined in Du Bois.

Please email me ASAP with the date and time you anticipate that you could attend at: “bryan at wa3ufn dot com”

Please excuse the late notice!

North Western PA Tornado

tornadoSevere Weather Awareness Week started a bit early for folks in North Western PA. April 20, 2017 brought an EF0 tornado to Mathews Run in Warren County, just north west of Youngsville, PA. Fortunately there were no injuries or serious damage from the short lived tornado.

Details of the tornado can be found at the State College NWS website:  http://www.weather.gov/ctp/MatthewsRunTornado

SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK APRIL 24 – 28, 2017

Since the National Weather Service outline for Severe Weather Week encompasses the weather that we encounter in our area, it might just be a great idea to NWS SPRINGcheck the State College, NWS website (http://www.weather.gov/ctp/SevereWeatherAwarenessWeek) for some important information. The information on the web pages just happen expand on the April 21st QCARC meeting program.

The topics covered each day will be: Monday – Tornadoes, Tuesday – Severe Thunderstorms, Wednesday – Flash Flooding, Friday – SkyWarn™ Spotters. You can click on the weekdays a few lines below the icons.

 

 

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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.

Pennsylvania Flood Safety Awareness Week

Spring WX Safety

The National Weather Service Flood Safety Awareness Week Begins March 27. Considering we experience flooding in our area rather often, it is likely worth your time to check out the National Weather Service flood safety week web page at http://www.weather.gov/ctp/floodSafetyWeek

The week starts out with information on the continuing effort to modernize the hydrologic information that enables the general public to be aware of water levels in bodies of water in their areas. An interactive, real time hydrologic map of PA.

Toward the bottom of Monday’s page are a couple downloads in .pdf format that may be of interest.

One of my favorite topics is the “Turn Around Don’t Drown” information that is available, that EVERYONE should follow. If people do not follow the simple phrase they are risking not only their own life and those who may be in the vehicle with them but also the lives of the rescue responders. The “Turn Around Don’t Drown” campaign is highlighted Tuesday.

The balance of the week includes; the causes and severity of floods, flood insurance and flood safety.

Please take some time to refresh yourself of flooding issues and the safety points that everyone should be aware of.

 

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Please Keep Fire Hydrants Clear

I know this is not directly related to amateur radio but it is directly related to neighborhood safety.
It may even be directly related to your safety!

Clear Hydrant

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.

 

Get Weather Ready Before A Tornado

NWS SPRINGSpring really is not too far away and with the change of seasons some rather interesting but destructive weather can occur. One of the more serious weather phenomenons we have to occasionally deal with is the tornado. While not a frequent issue, it is one that we need to be prepared for. Understand the Tornado Watch and Tornado Warning Alerts. Be sure your cell phone has the emergency alerts function turned on. There are numerous weather advisory apps for Smartphones that are very helpful.

Check out a two-minute N.W.S. video on preparing for a tornado at: https://youtu.be/uE66ganofF0

Another weather issue we have to deal with is the severe thunderstorm. It was only in 2016, that the Clearfield area was hit with thunderstorms that materialized and stalled over the area. These storms produced flooding unseen by many in some fifty-plus years.

Following is the synopsis of the 2016 Clearfield severe weather from the National Weather Service.

1945EST0
000EST 0 0 0.00K 0.00K Flash Flood

A small, but potent thunderstorm developed over Clearfield County just north of the town of Clearfield just before 22:00Z Thursday June 2nd, 2016. The storm moved ittle and intensified, and by 23Z was producing very heavy rain. The storm sat over the Clearfield-Lawrence County Airport (KFIG) where 5.16 of rain fell essentially 3 hours.

Initially Flood Advisories were issued (2316Z), but as the storm sat in one spot, the advisory was upgraded to a Flash Flood Warning at 0038Z.

Significant flooding was reported near the town of Clearfield, with three homes flooded, and according to Clearfield County EMA, 21 people were rescued from their homes and taken to a shelter.

Shortly after midnight a house on West Front Street exploded when the owners tried to turn their power back on. Four residents of the home suffered unknown injuries.

Hardest hit areas were near Route 879 and Industrial Road (see fig 2), and multiple streets in downtown Clearfield including Turnpike, Nichols and Merrill Street.

A small, but potent thunderstorm developed over Clearfield County just north of the town of Clearfield just before 22:00Z Thursday June 2nd, 2016. The storm moved little and by 23Z was producing very heavy rain. The storm sat over the Clearfield -Lawrence County Airport (KFIG) where 5.16 of rain fell essentially 3 hours. Initially Flood Advisories were issued (2316Z), but as the storm sat in one spot, the advisory was upgraded to a Flash Flood Warning at 0038Z.

Significant flooding was reported near the town of Clearfield, with three homes flooded, and according to Clearfield County EMA 21 people were rescued from their homes and taken to a shelter. Fortunately there were no reports of serious injuries. Hardest hit areas were near Route 879 and Industrial Road, and multiple streets in downtown Clearfield including Turnpike, Nichols and Merrill Street.

 

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