Courage Center Handiham World Weekly E-Letter for the week of 27 May 2009 This is a free weekly news & information update from Courage Center Handiham System <http://handiham.org> . Please do not reply to this message. Use the contact information at the end, or simply email handiham@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx You can also listen to the content online: Listen to an MP3 audio stream: <http://www.handiham.org/audio/handiham.m3u> http://www.handiham.org/audio/handiham.m3u Download the MP3 audio to your portable player: http://www.handiham.org/audio/handiham.mp3 Get this issue as an audio podcast: http://feeds.feedburner.com/handiham _____ Welcome to Handiham World! cartoon guy which steam coming out of ears, grouchyLast week's article about bad operators and their terrible habits that disrupt nets brought some comments. This commentary from John, N1UMJ, pretty much tells the story: I find lately that my biggest problem is the one who breaks in without listening. I run many nets: a monthly RACES net, a weekly ARES net, and several NTS nets throughout the week. I'm hearing more and more of this on 2 meters. After the net, someone tells me, "Oh yeah, I know him - he's on EchoLink all the time." That puts my problems in high gear. I even had one who, when advised there was a net going on, said, "I know", and kept talking to his party. I was at a state RACES office that day, so I had to be professional and polite. The repeater trustee helped with that one because politeness wasn't working. Usually though, if they want to talk to someone during a net, as the clueless op might want to do, I very nicely and tactfully explain that it would be appreciated if they'd stick around and ask questions after the net and the person they want will surely stick around if they ask in the closing comments. That almost always works. The Mr. Know-it-all type is not so common. I haven't had many of them, but the couple we've had, I just let him be his own worst enemy to be honest, unless he's really annoying, in which case I secure him or as NCS just don't give him a chance when I can see it coming. Luckily, the Know-it-alls are not the nightly check-ins. I don't have the low life or politics person on any nets on which I am the net control station, but I think I'd probably again, go with telling them to keep that for another time. I don't have the nontechnical guy as you mention it, because I refuse to run a net on any repeater with EchoLink. Echolink does seem to cause a lot of problems, but on HF or 2 meters with more and more radios having complicated adjustments, I advise them of the problem and explain some people checked in to the net want to get out, but if they'll stick around for after the net I'll help them straighten the technical problem out. I haven't really experienced the late person or the one who talks too much. If you're going to be late for a net though, I often find that if you listen for a few minutes before checking in, a little patience goes a long way and you can catch up without being a problem. As I said, I run a lot of nets, and I've probably run in to just about every situation at one time or another. My favorite was the time we had a dam almost let go in my city. Picture this: The Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is active because the shelter is open. Someone comes on the repeater calling the EOC to ask how he can drive through the city without having traffic trouble, and no one's answering. We had the repeater on to talk from the EOC to the shelter, but we had other duties as well, especially if the shelter had us on the phone with private info or something. Well, this guy starts yelling and screaming about what kind of EOC was it that wouldn't answer his questions and he was going to report them and stuff. The EOC wasn't using the repeater full time and thus didn't take over it to keep people off, but he was asked to refrain from use of the repeater in a phone call from the trustee for the rest of that event and he stayed off. It's a shame there are people like that. It was just another time that it was very hard to be polite about it, but you really have to be. I was getting my two hours of sleep when that was going on, in my off shift and did get on and explain that a phone call was the best way to get his info and the repeater was not being used for requests like his because everyone was doing a million things and busy, but he's also the one that comes in to nets and tries to change topics and almost no one talks to him anymore because he hasn't changed in 18 years. So, there are a few stories. It does happen, I see it more and more in recent years, but luckily it's not real bad yet and 9 times out of 10, there is a tactful way to handle it without causing any issues. When there isn't, I quit. Thanks, John! And thanks to all of you long-suffering net controls out there who somehow manage to keep your cool. We really appreciate what you do. Patrick Tice wa0tda@xxxxxxxx Handiham Manager Reference: The 10 worst ops: <http://www.handiham.org/node/472> http://www.handiham.org/node/472 _____ Avery's QTH - Remembering the J-38 (K6IX.net photo) Avery's QTH - Remembering the J-38 (K6IX.net photo) Image: J-38 key, courtesy K6IX.net. Welcome once again to my humble QTH: It seems since the FCC did away with the International Morse Code requirement more and more people are deciding to learn it now. Why? Because now it is fun. Because there is no pressure to have to learn it. People at Dayton were even checking out all the various manufacturers of telegraph keys. Many people have quite a collection of them and are always looking for that rare one that is still missing from their collection. Some people have some belonging to some famous operators while others have some home built out of things like hack saw blades, printed circuit board material, and other things that have been modified to work as either a straight key or a mechanical "BUG" or even an electronic keyer. Some rather rare keys have been home made by people with quite elaborate machine shops and are machined on a lathe out of very sharp looking brass or other material. Many have some very nice metal or wooden bases as well. One trick that was used was to hollow out a wooden base and fill it with some very heavy material. The idea was to help prevent the key from moving around the table top while sending. In some cases if the desk was older, the key was screwed down right to the desk top. One of the more popular straight keys right after WW2 was the surplus military J-38. Back in the early days just after the war they could be purchased for a couple of dollars. Right now if you were to find one in good shape, it would run about $40.00 or so. The J-38 was used in many different forms. It was used in aircraft, in jeeps, communications trucks, communications shacks, aboard ships and in some cases the key was modified to be strapped onto someone's knee so it could be used while traveling. Some were used in muddy dirty wet "FOX HOLES" right in the middle of combat conditions. People in the military were tested, and if they showed ability toward the International Morse Code, they were sent to a special school where they did nothing but learn code and become very proficient at using it 8 hours a day. After awhile many military operators could copy code, read a book, and carry on a voice conversation all at the same time. I personally know two such former military code operators. Both are now retired from the service and the jobs they had after they left the military. One became an amateur radio operator while the other one did not. The one that became an amateur operator taught English at one of the local high schools in the Minneapolis St. Paul area. When I would go over to his place for a ham project, he would be correcting English papers/tests or what-have-you while listening to 20 meter CW. We would be in the middle of something and all of a sudden he would say excuse me, run over to the rig, send his reply, and then come back and we would continue on with what we were doing without missing a beat. I often wondered how many J-38 key contacts were literally worn out by the military operators as they did their jobs pounding that brass. It would be interesting to know where some of those keys had been and what some of them had sent. So, until next time, 73 es DX de K0HLA, Avery You can reach me Monday & Wednesday until 1:30 PM at: 763-520-0515 Or email me at: Avery.finn@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx See many more excellent examples of J-38 keys at the K6IX website: http://k6ix.net/J38Keys.html . By wa0tda at 05/27/2009 - 15:33 . Login <http://www.handiham.org/user/login?destination=comment/reply/471%2523commen t-form> to post comments . Printer-friendly <http://www.handiham.org/print/471> version . Send <http://www.handiham.org/printmail/471> to friend _____ Recommended Dear Handihams, If you don't already receive this weekly email, you might want to sign up for it, as there are often interesting items which you might find useful for the e-letter: It's "Top Tech Tidbits" and you can get it here: http://www.flying-blind.com/ttt_enews_archive_2009.html 73, John, NU6P Thanks also to WA0CAF, who recommends the Top Tech Tidbits news. *** Dear Handihams, I suggest you post this link about the Radio JOVE Project! It's cool! Radio JOVE: students and amateur scientists observe and analyze natural radio emissions of Jupiter, the Sun, and our galaxy: http://radiojove.gsfc.nasa.gov/ 73, Ken, KB3LLA *** Dear Handihams, When a friend posted this on a list I frequent, it made me think of and fondly remember you. Thanks for all you both have been, and are, and for both all you have done, and do! 73, Danny, WB4IDU Subject: Ham Radio Spirit By way of background, a post came to the Kenwood TS-2000 list asking how to increase power on the 2000 because he couldn't afford to get a separate amplifier. People told him, of course, that even if he got thirty watts more out of the 100 watts it gets normally, you could damage the finals or get a lot of intermod. This Dean wrote back and said he just picked up a small amp from an estate sale and he would give it to this guy for the cost of shipping. Many of us wrote back on the list about how nice it was that'd he do that, and how we all thought ham radio spirit was dead. Here below is Dean's explanation: Joe; Some 50 years ago, there was a young kid not even a teenager yet, that each Saturday evening had an invitation from a licensed ham operator who was in his 70's to come over to his home. That young kid would always make sure he got all his chores done that his parents had given him that day, so that he could be at his friend's promptly at 7 pm. He would stare at all the big knobs, meters, controls, microphones, and large metal boxes just wondering if it was possible to talk to the astronauts that were launching on rockets to fly out in space. After all, a man called President Kennedy said that they were going to walk on the moon before 1970. Then, the time came that he had been waiting for each week, he got to hold the microphone and talk to people on the other side of the world that were already in tomorrow. After each contact, he would go outside and look at the pieces of wire and the big antenna that could spin around thinking to himself, he had just used that and his voice somehow was coming off that thing. Then he would run back inside because he did not want to miss another chance to talk as he had only 1 hour in which to have his dreams come true. Well, that little boy came home from school one day to find out that his friend has passed on. He was crushed as he had developed a friendship with that man that he said to himself, he would never forget him and that he would never let the gift he had been given, go unnoticed. That same day that he found out he his friend had passed away, he was given a note that also came from his friend. He opened the note and when he read it he began to cry because his friend had given him a gift; one that would never be as big as his friendship but nevertheless it was a good gift, he had been given a microphone that had no connector on it, some wire with instructions on how to build an antenna, and of course a radio just like the one he had talked on with his friend. He had also been given a book to study from and the name of someone to call when he was ready to get a license to use the radio, the antenna, and of course the microphone. He closed the note with a goodbye and postscript, it said "have fun talking to the space men". That little kid was me and by 12, I had my first amateur radio license, not in this country but in another. Amateur radio has made a big impact on my life, I only hope it has done the same to someone else. Dean, KG6ZCD _____ Wednesday Evening EchoLink Net Wednesday Evening EchoLink Net happy guy with headset Please join us and check in or simply listen in, as you see fit: When: Wednesday evenings at 19:30 hours Minnesota time (7:30 PM) GMT: Thursday morning at 00:30 Z Where: 145.450 MHz N0BVE repeater (Minneapolis-St. Paul) Node 89680 (EchoLink worldwide) IRLP node 9008 (Vancouver BC reflector) WIRES system number 1427 Everyone is welcome. You do not need to be a member, and the net is relaxed, friendly, and informal. By the way, our Net Manager Howard, KE7KNN, reminds us that we need net control stations for the Wednesday evening net and for the Monday through Saturday morning net. If you are in the Twin Cities, all you need is a radio that can get on the 145.45 N0BVE repeater, and if you live outside the RF area, you can still be net control via EchoLink, IRLP, or WIRES. _____ <http://www.handiham.org/node/467> Get our e-letter audio podcast by phone <http://www.handiham.org/sites/default/files/images/hamradio_6.gif> Get our e-letter audio podcast by phone You can listen to our weekly e-letter audio podcast by phone if you can't get to your computer. It's easy with Podlinez. You just call 360-526-6243. More information, including a way to get text alerts sent to your mobile phone, are at the Podlinez website: http://www.podlinez.com/details.php?number=3605266243 _____ This week at Headquarters: . The Friday audio lectures return this week. The Extra Class topic will be amplifiers. Audio will be posted on Friday. . I have joined AMSAT and now I get the AMSAT Journal, from which I will produce some audio, assuming I have time to do the reading. Stay tuned! When audio is available, it will appear on the "audio this week" page in the members section. . Minnesota Radio Camp application forms are online! The sooner we hear from you, the better -- if you are planning to join us at this summer's session. One of the summer camps that had been held at Courage North in previous years has been canceled, which means that people who could not get into that session may want to apply for the Radio Camp. Incidentally, you can e-mail us with your ideas for projects and topics at the upcoming Minnesota Radio Camp session. Thanks for all your ideas so far! The waterfront at Lake George Join us this August at Minnesota Radio Camp. Download the camp application package, which contains information pages and the forms you need to apply for camp. Camp starts on Sunday, August 16, and finishes on Sunday, August 23. It's a week of extraordinary fun, during which you can earn your ham radio license or just get on the air. And it can cost as little as $240 for the week. There are two choices for formats, either Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF. * Download Word Forms <http://handiham.org/manuals/forms/mncamp/word/> * Download PDF Forms <http://handiham.org/manuals/forms/mncamp/pdf/> * Not <http://www.handiham.org/node/358> sure? Take a photo tour! Having trouble downloading or have questions about Radio Camp or Handihams? Just email Pat, wa0tda@xxxxxxxx, anytime. . The Handiham website will be updated daily, usually multiple times a day as news breaks. * In Operating Skills: * The June issue of Worldradio digest audio has been completed for our blind members by Bob, N1BLF, and is posted today. * Volunteer reader Ken Padgitt, W9MJY, reads the June "Doctor is in" column from QST for our blind members. * The May, 2009 issues of QST & CQ magazines are in audio digest for our blind members. * Login to the <http://handiham.org/user> member section of the Handiham website and find the magazine digests in the Library. The QST, CQ, and Worldradio digests have been read by Bob Zeida, N1BLF. * Tape deliveries are complete for May. Thanks to George, N0SBU, and Avery, K0HLA, and to our readers, Ken Padgitt, W9MJY, and Bob Zeida, N1BLF. Don't forget to return those mailers so we can send June out as soon as it's ready. * Stay in touch! Be sure to send Nancy your change of address, phone number changes, or email address changes so that we can continue to stay in touch with you. You may either email Nancy at hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx or call her toll-free at 1-866-426-3442. Mornings are the best time to contact us. Reminder: Handiham renewals are now on a monthly schedule - Please renew or join, as we need you to keep our program strong! You will have several choices when you renew: * Join at the usual $10 annual dues level for one year. * Join for three years at $30. * Lifetime membership is $100. * If you can't afford the dues, request a sponsored membership for the year. * Donate an extra amount of your choice to help support our activities. * Discontinue your membership. Please return your renewal form as soon as possible. Your support is critical! Please help. The Courage Handiham System depends on the support of people like you, who want to share the fun and friendship of ham radio with others. Please help us provide services to people with disabilities. We would really appreciate it if you would remember us in your estate plans. If you need a planning kit, please call. If you are wondering whether a gift of stock can be given to Handihams, the answer is yes! Please call Nancy at: 1-866-426-3442 or email: <mailto:hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Ask for a free DVD about the Handiham System. It's perfect for your club program, too! The video tells your club about how we got started, the Radio Camps, and working with hams who have disabilities. Call 1-866-426-3442 toll-free. DONATE USED HAM GEAR 1-866-426-3442 toll-free Help us get new hams on the air. FREE! Get the Handiham E-Letter by email every Wednesday, and stay up-to-date with ham radio news. * You may listen in audio to the E-Letter at www.handiham.org <http://www.handiham.org/> . Email us to subscribe: <mailto:hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Handiham members with disabilities can take an online audio course at www.handiham.org <http://www.handiham.org/> : . Beginner . General . Extra . Operating Skills _____ That's it for this week. 73 from all of us at the Courage Handiham System! Pat, WA0TDA Manager, Courage Handi-ham System Reach me by email at: <mailto:patt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> patt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx * Nancy, Handiham Secretary: hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx * Jerry, N0VOE, Student Coordinator: jerry.kloss@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx * Avery, K0HLA, Educational Coordinator: avery.finn@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx * Pat, WA0TDA, Manager, patt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx * Radio Camp email: radiocamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx ARRL </p /> <p>diamond logo ARRL is the premier organization supporting amateur radio worldwide. Please contact Handihams for help joining the ARRL. We will be happy to help you fill out the paperwork! The weekly e-letter is a compilation of software tips, operating information, and Handiham news. It is published on Wednesdays, and is available to everyone free of charge. Please email wa0tda@xxxxxxxx for changes of address, unsubscribes, etc. Include your old email address and your new address. . By wa0tda at 05/27/2009 - 19:56 . Login <http://www.handiham.org/user/login?destination=comment/reply/473%2523commen t-form> to post comments . Printer-friendly <http://www.handiham.org/print/473> version . Send <http://www.handiham.org/printmail/473> to friend _____ Courage Center Handiham System 3915 Golden Valley Road Golden Valley, MN 55422 E-Mail: hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Toll-Free telephone: 1-866-HANDIHAM (1-866-426-3442) FAX:(763) 520-0577 Be sure to put "Handihams" in the FAX address! We look forward to hearing from you soon.