QCARC Calendar

July 2016
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August 2016
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Local APRS

QC Weather

Clear
Saturday 07/23/2016 10%
Clear
Mostly clear. Lows overnight in the upper 50s.
Partly Cloudy
Sunday 07/24/2016 20%
Partly Cloudy
Partly cloudy skies in the morning will give way to cloudy skies during the afternoon. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. High 93F. Winds SW at 5 to 10 mph.
Chance of a Thunderstorm
Monday 07/25/2016 60%
Chance of a Thunderstorm
Partly to mostly cloudy with scattered showers and thunderstorms in the afternoon. A few storms may be severe. High 87F. Winds WSW at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 60%.
Quad-County Weather Page

Latest News

Quadruple Your Driving Safety

  Many of us drive regularly and deal with the varied issues associated with driving, how ever small or large, on the highways. I may be able to offer some information that will make your commute four times safer! Whether you are going down the street to the convenience store or ...

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Cellphone Weather Alerts

So, you're motoring down the road to your destination, when you hear an unfamiliar noise from your cell phone. Best thing to do is safely pull off the road then check your phone for the reason for the noise. When you check the cell phone you find out it just ...

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Current Club Announcements

Attention All Club Members! Monthly Breakfast Arrowhead Restaurant, Clearfield - Saturday August 13, 8:30 AM Monthly Meeting Smeal Bldg, Penn State DuBois - Friday August 19, 6:30 PM
The Quad-County Amateur Radio Club is a WRN Ambassador

Don't Turn A Cold Shoulder To Summer Heat

Although we have recent memories of snow, the summer heat really is on the way. All too many times we hear of children or pets left in a vehicle during hot summer days, sometimes with a heartbreaking ending. There are days when the temperature may seem rather low but with ...

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Severe Weather Watch-Warning, Know The Difference

Sometimes we peer out the window and the sky looks ominous then the wind picks up and possibly it begins to rain or hail. What may happen next can be a matter of protecting our life and property, a good reason to understand the difference between Watches and Warnings.  Being ...

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Yaesu FT-991 A huge step for mankind….

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, where all the best parts ...

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Are Lifetime Amateur Radio Licenses in the Future? -Nope, Petition Dismissed-

June 22, 2016 - petition dismissed. Download the entire document 3 pages. There is a Petition for Rule Making (RM 11760) that asks the FCC to grant lifetime Amateur Radio Licenses. The FCC is seeking comments on this petition that would revise §97.25 to indicate the license is granted for lifetime as ...

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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 ...

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WIRES-X , The New Kid on the Block

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 ...

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A New Satellite in 2017

The New Year of 2016 just arrived but there are some amateurs already anticipating 2017. That anticipation for 2017 stems from a recent announcement that researchers at the Ted and Karyn Hume Center for National Security and Technology, part of Virginia Tech University are preparing to send an amateur radio ...

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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 ...

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Happy Thanksgiving - We Remember

  Happy Thanksgiving everybody! This is a traditional time to spend with family and friends, and to remember all those who are no longer with us. I remember in the early days of the club, that there was a day-long QSO on the DuBois Repeater with hams far and wide in the ...

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CubeSats - An Interesting Concept

AMSAT recently deployed the FOX-1A amateur radio satellite, also designated AO-85. These tiny satellites are only 4 inches square! Image that little cube flying around the earth and using it to talk to other amateur radio operators around the world. Communications can be established via the FM transponder that has ...

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UPDATED TIMES FOR THE MONTHLY BREAKFAST AND MEETING

The November meeting brought about a discussion concerning the times of the breakfast and meetings. After a discussion, the membership voted to change the times for the breakfast to 8:30 AM and the meeting to 6:30 PM. The unanimous vote resulted in the decision to change to what is believed ...

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- IMPORTANT UPDATE - The Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 -- H.R.1301 & S 1685

Recent information from ARRL indicates that those in opposition to this bill are campaigning against the bill with fraudulent information which is shown in a video on the link below "Contacting Your Congressional Representatives". It is also part of the QCARC meeting program on November 20. To counter these false ...

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QCARC Events

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Repeaters and Nets

The Quad County Amateur Radio Club’s main repeater is the 147.315 N3QC repeater.

Repeaters

    52.07/53.07 CTCSS: 173.8 N3HAO “Rockton Repeater”

    Currently off the air
    A 6-meter repeater was a rarity when this one was first installed circa 1984 by K3PS and WA3UFN. After transfer of ownership of the co-sited .39 repeater was accomplished, the 6-meter machine ran on autopilot for many years. In the late 2000s, it began to fade from the air. There have been rumors that it was recently transmitting a good signal once again in late 2010. This author has been unable to confirm such operation. [Would someone in the know, please edit this with correct information?]

    146.265/.865 CTCSS: 173.8 N3QC “Quad-County Repeater”

    Permanently off the air. Re-coordinated to 147.915/.315
    The K3MD repeater was coordinated for Sykesville and was later moved to a tower atop the Rockton Mountain, becoming the Quad-County ARC repeater. Due to the short spacing (47.5 miles) to the State College 146.25/.85 repeater a new frequency was needed. In 2008 the repeater was replaced with a Kenwood TKR-750, Arcom RC-210 controller, 7/8 inch hardline, two 150 watt amplifiers, and a Super Stationmaster at 160′ AGL, purchased with monies from a Homeland Security grant to PEMA, administered through the Northwest Central PA Emergency Response Group. It was re-coordinated by the Club on 147.915/.315, thus resolving adjacent-channel interference issues with the State College amateur community. The 146.865 repeater is now defunct. Its hardline and two-element folded dipole array were relocated and reinstalled on a tower a half-mile away that was subleased to the Club by Clearfield County in 2001 that also hosts the K3EDD UHF repeater.

    147.915/.315 CTCSS: 173.8 N3QC “Quad-County Repeater”

    The new N3QC repeater was on the air May 10, 2008. The N3QC repeater has 7/8 inch hardline, and the antenna is a Cellwave Super Stationmater side mounted on the tower at 220 feet.

    147.99/.39 CTCSS: 173.8 K3PS “DuBois Repeater”

    The Quad-County region’s very first repeater, built by hams for hams.
    The original Quad-County FM Association repeater. Originally coordinated on 146.13/73 it operated beginning March 1976 from a hilltop in the Clear Run section of DuBois. From June to October of 1977, nearly 30 members of the QCARC and QCFMA acquired a lease to the old State Police tower site on Dubec Road off the Rockton Pike, and raised the funds to purchase and acquire the materials to build a repeater, the cement-block building to house the repeater, coaxial hardline, 105 foot tower, and custom-designed Antenna Specialists 4-bay folded-dipole antenna array. Throughout the summer many work sessions were held to build the building, raise the tower, run the hardline and install the antenna on the top of the tower. At 11 am on November 11, 1977, Paul Silinsky, K3PS flipped the switch and put the repeater on the air.

    The K3PS Repeater was a major triumph for our very rural area, and its outstanding location and state-of-the-art, high-performance engineering allowed it to provide solid coverage for mobiles from Barkeyville to Lock Haven on Interstate 80 (a distance of over 140 highway miles), a similar distance from Lantz Corners to Windber on US-219, and hand-held coverage throughout the communities of DuBois, Falls Creek, Reynoldsville, Brockway, Clearfield, Curwensville, Philipsburg, St Marys, Mahaffey and much of Punxsutawney, making it a valuable asset for emergency communications service, especially along the heavily traveled I-80 and US-219 corridors.

    Regular maintenance kept the repeater in tip-top shape, and preserved reliable service throughout its exceptional coverage area for many years. At that time, the Quad-County Amateur Radio Club was justifiably proud of their repeater!

    In the mid 1990s, K3PS moved to central Ohio and donated the repeater, duplexer, tower, antennas, frequency coordination, lease and building to KE3DR of Barnesboro.

    147.99/.39 CTCSS: 173.8 N5NWC “Wide-Area Network Repeater”

    Now Under New Management
    In the summer of 2011, Jim Knox N5NWC acquired the 147.39 repeater equipment, building, tower and coordination. On Sunday, January 8th, 2012, the repeater was connected to the ever-expanding WAN Repeater System, a massively-linked network of over a dozen repeaters, reaching from Western New York to Washington, DC, Eastern Maryland and into Virginia.

    The repeater owner has graciously invited QCARC and other area clubs to use and control the N5NWC repeaters for scheduled nets and other activities.

    443.475/448.475 CTCSS: 173.8 N5NWC “Rockton Mountain UHF Repeater”

    N5NWC moved this repeater from Punxsutawney, and put its antenna at the top of the 147.39 tower at 110 feet AGL. Future plans include a hardware upgrade when the weather is warmer. He has graciously invited QCARC and other area clubs to use and control the N5NWC repeaters for scheduled nets and other activities.

Digital Repeaters

    144.39 N3QC-1 High-Level APRS Digipeater

    This coordinated APRS digipeater is located in Pine Township at 2500′ MSL and provides reliable, wide-area coverage for mobiles along I-80 and the US-119, US-219 and US-322 corridors, and links other digipeaters across the state and into Ohio. It also provides the on-air source for a number of local objects, including voice repeaters, allowing one-button QSY to local repeaters by properly equipped mobile operators.

    144.39 WA3UFN-1 DuBois fill-in digipeater and Igate

    The WA3UFN-1 digipeater is coordinated at a 1600′ MSL location south of DuBois and provides solid coverage to the heavily traveled roads surrounding the Greater DuBois area, and gates thousands of packets daily from an extensive area to the Internet based APRS-IS network. Full support of bi-directional services like email-2, who-is and all other APRS messaging services is also provided.

    145.01 WA3UFN-1 “DUJ” Packet Digipeater

    Permanently off the air.
    From 1984 to 1991 the WA3UFN packet digipeater was located on the same tower as the 147.39 repeater, and provided a vital route for digital packet traffic between eastern and western Pennsylvania, as well as providing a link between souther counties and Maryland and northern counties and western New York. The system also provided a digital “store-and-forward” packet BBS.

    145.01 K3MD-1 Packet Digipeater

    Permanently off the air.
    From 2001 to 2004 the K3MD packet digipeater was relocated from Sykesville to the Centre Communications tower on Pike Road, Pine Township, and provided a vital route for digital packet traffic between eastern and western Pennsylvania, as well as providing a link between souther counties and Maryland and northern counties and western New York. The system also provided a digital “store-and-forward” packet BBS.

Nets

    Quad-County FM Net

    Sunday 1900 Local 147.315 N3QC Repeater (Backup: 147.39)
    The Sunday Evening Quad-County FM Net has been on the air since before the Club was established. Before repeaters were available, the net was conducted on 146.94, which at the time was the standard simplex frequency. When the Johnstown Repeater began operation, simplex operations were moved to 146.52 simplex. Net Control was usually Dick Flanders, WA3BUX, due to his superior 2-meter station and antenna array. At other times, the net was conducted from the Clear Run VHF site. Check-ins were from all over the Quad-County area, and included stations from Clearfield, Curwensville, Mahaffey, Punxsutawney, Reynoldsville, Brookville, Sigel, Ridgway, St Marys, Kersey, Penfield and DuBois. The net played a key role in the formation of the club and helped lay the groundwork for the formation of the club, as it allowed hams from a large area to get acquainted with each other.

    In 1976, it moved to the K3ZDR/WR3AGV DuBois repeater on 146.13/73 when that repeater was placed on the air. In 1977, it moved to the new K3PS 147.99/39 repeater atop the Rockton Mountain. The wide coverage of that repeater allowed coverage of the entire Quad-County area, and the number of check-ins soon surpassed 50 per session. Hams like Gil Hamilton, K3BFO added character with such “announcements” as a “Brass Monkey Alert” when sub-zero temperatures were forecast.

    In the 1990s, the Quad-County ARC put a repeater on 146.265/.865 on an adjacent tower and the net moved to the new repeater. In 2008, that repeater moved to a frequency of 147.915/.315, and the net moved with it.

    In spite of all the changed locations and frequencies, the Quad-County FM Net can still be found every Sunday evening at 7:00 pm local time. With only a handful of times the net was canceled, it has run more or less every Sunday evening for over 38 years. Please join us this Sunday!

    Quad-County 70cm Net

    Sunday following the 1900 Quad-County FM Net on the 443.475 N5NWC Repeater
    The Quad-County Amateur Radio Club 70 cm net debuted Sunday April 1, 2012, following the 1900 Quad-County FM Net on the 444.625 K3EDD Repeater. 12 stations checked in. After several successful sessions, we were ordered by the repeater owner to cease operating the net, in response to frivolous allegations that our net could somehow “interfere” with another net on another band on another repeater on another frequency at another time.

    Pursuant to 47 CFR 97.205 (e), we complied with the request of the repeater trustee and discontinued our use of that repeater.

    Beginning June 3, 2012, we have resumed operation of this net on the 443.475 N5NWC repeater located on an adjacent tower. Our thanks go out to Jim Knox N5NWC for his strong support of our club, our activities and the good of the Amateur Radio Service in our region.

    The net meets every Sunday, immediately following the 2-meter net. Please consider joining us. The purpose of the net is to familiarize area amateurs with the characteristics and capabilities of the 70cm (440 MHz) UHF band. So circle your calendar and prepare to join in!

    You might be surprised to see how well UHF works with today’s equipment!

    Hamshack Net

    Wednesday 1900 Local 147.315 N3QC Repeater
    The Hamshack Net began in November 2011 as a roundtable ragchew net. Each week, net control announces a topic, such as “How’s DX” or “Favorite Antennas.” Stations check in and are recognized, and the conversation goes around the list several times. Most sessions last the better part of an hour. All hams are invited to participate; club membership is not a requirement. Please join us this Wednesday!
       

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