[handiham-world] Handiham World for the week of 22 October 2008

  • From: "Patrick Tice" <wa0tda@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <handiham-world@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 22 Oct 2008 13:46:25 -0500

Courage Center's Handiham World Weekly E-Letter for the week of 22 October

This is a free weekly news & information update from Courage Center's
Handiham System <http://handiham.org> . Please do not reply to this message.
Use the contact information at the end, or simply email

Listen to an MP3 audio stream:
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Welcome to Handiham World!

Well, well. Here we are listening to the weather forecast and thinking (at
least here in Minnesota, in the center of North America) that there is
probably no way to fool ourselves into thinking that winter won't arrive as
usual this year. It can, and it will.

I'm starting to think about what I call my "Alternate Plan B". Sure it's a
little redundant, but what this is all about is having a second way to do
things... Namely, to stay on the air all winter in case the weather takes
out my antenna. I've already followed my own advice and gotten my antennas
into shape for the winter, but you never know. I've set myself up with a
wire antenna and a tuner that will pretty much cover all of the HF bands
that I normally use. My alternate plan B is a multiband vertical. If the
wire antenna comes down in an ice storm, the vertical will remain standing
-- I hope. This is just one example of building redundancy into your amateur
radio station. If you are on the air long enough, chances are that you have
collected more than one HF transceiver and more than one power supply. I
have, and to build redundancy into my station all I have to do is flip a
couple of switches to bring the spare station online in case there is some
failure in my main station. The addition of the handiham remote base at
Courage North adds one more way that I could get on the air if I needed to,
and we remain on schedule to bring this member resource to members in early
2009. Nonetheless, the remote base suffered a failure over the past weekend,
and there is no alternate plan B for that station. I suppose that is all
right, since the station is not meant to be anyone's "main" station, but I
imagine some members will be in situations where they have no antennas
because of restrictions. For them, a second choice would be a different
remote base, and the W4MQ software provides for this option, though users
have to be registered and approved for the other stations, just as they have
to be approved for the handiham remote base. 

The concept of Alternate plan B is well known at amateur radio special
events and Field Day operation. Generally Murphy will pay a visit at the
least opportune times, making it necessary to switch out equipment or
quickly string up another temporary antenna system. In fact, I just spoke
with Dave, W0OXB, who is planning a special event station at Minnesota's
Split Rock Lighthouse. The event recalls the sinking of an iron ore
freighter in Lake Superior, the Edmund Fitzgerald. Because the lighthouse is
located in northern Minnesota on Lake Superior, you have to have a plan!
There is a rumor that the weather in northern Minnesota at the end of
October isn't always the best. Keep on reading for that special event news.

For your Handiham World, I'm...

Pat Tice


Split Rock Lighthouse Edmund Fitzgerald special event

Split Rock Lighthouse Edmund Fitzgerald special event

It's time for the SARA ?Remembering the Edmund Fitzgerald? Split Rock
Lighthouse Special Event October 31 ? November 2, 2008. SARA, the Stillwater
Amateur Radio Association, is a Handiham-affiliated club.

November 10, 2008 marks the 33rd anniversary of the sinking of the iron ore
carrier and loss of her 29-man crew.

Special Event:
SARA is planning to operate two HF stations at Split Rock Lighthouse, Split
Rock State Park (Minnesota).  <http://radioham.org> 

Operating Schedule (all times are U.S. Central):
Friday, 10/31 (~2:00 - 6:00 PM)
Saturday, 11/1 (10:00 AM - 8:00 PM)
Sunday, 11/2 (10:00 AM - 8:00 PM)

Operating Frequencies & Modes:
Primary: 3.860, 7.260, 14.260, 21.360
Secondary: 1.900, 18.160, 28.360
Frequencies are listed in MHz and + or ? 10 KHz
The standard mode will be SSB. SARA also plans to operate SSTV, PSK and CW

SARA QSL & Club Info:
QSL to WØJH for 8.5? x 11? certificate, send SASE.
For an unfolded certificate, use a 9? x 12? SASE.

The following week, November 7-9:
N8F & K8F (Stu Rockafellow Amateur Radio Society): Operating from Whitefish
Point Lighthouse and Paradise, MI.  <http://www.qsl.net/w8njh> 

November 8:
W8F (Livonia Amateur Radio Club): Operating from the Dossin Great Lakes
Museum on Belle Isle in Detroit, MI.  <http://www.livoniaarc.com> 

For complete QSL and Club info look in: November issues of QST, World Radio
& CQ


Avery's QTH

Avery's QTH - Avery with Collins station

Welcome once again to my humble QTH:

Many of the old timers learned the radio frequency spectrum by having a
radio and tuning around the dial listening to whatever was there. We called
that Short Wave Listening or SWL'ing. Some places there were commercial
broadcasting stations. Other places there were ships and planes. Still other
spots on the dial had other things to hear. By tuning around, a person
begins to notice the frequencies where certain bands of operation are and
where they are not. What is this thumping noise that was heard around 7 MHz?
For people with radios that had a beat frequency oscillator, it was just a
matter of switching it on and presto: International Morse Code was able to
be copied. For others it was just a bunch of thumping noise. Now if they
went up in frequency just a little, there was voice operation and as we all
know today, that part of the spectrum is the 40 meter ham band. After awhile
people would think that would be neat if they could get on and talk back to
those stations on the 40 meter band. So, they would study and when they were
ready they would go down to the FCC office nearest to them and take the

Most people today do not have that advantage of being an SWL first and so
they have to learn concepts like the frequency spectrum. Most just end up
memorizing a bunch of frequencies and what modes of operation can be used
where. They have a very difficult time with where bands and frequencies are
in relation to each other and more importantly, where they can operate and
where they cannot according to the license class they hold.

This is true with many other of the concepts people are expected to know in
order to pass their license exams.
By building their own equipment people learned how circuits worked and what
things did in their gear. Let's see... if I want this to operate on the 80
meter band what are the values of the inductance and capacitance necessary
to make it function there? Out come the formulas and figuring to determine
the correct values. After doing this a number of times, certain
relationships begin to be noticed.

After so much hands-on experience, is it any wonder that given the
information a person could figure out the answers to the many questions
required for their ham license?

Many people today just attempt to memorize the questions and answers, which
is one way to pass the exam, I guess. But what happens if a station is
outside the ham bands and you want to listen to it? Could you build the
proper antenna to work on its frequency? Could you figure out the proper LC
circuit to make a radio that would give it's best reception on that

So, if you know the logic behind why and how things work in amateur radio,
it won't really matter what questions are on the exam because you will know
how to figure out the answer.

So, until next time

73 es DX de K0HLA Avery

You can reach me
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday mornings at:



Firefox Keyboard Shortcuts

Dick Garey, WA0CAF, writes to tell us about a link to Firefox browser



 <http://www.handiham.org/node/230> Elmer Blog - what about IRLP?

Dear Elmer,

I am a ham operator and I have the IRLP and I know you broadcast on a IRLP
reflector as I have heard you but I can't find the reflector number on your
site. All I see is EchoLink. Can you please tell me what IRLP reflector you
use. Thanks, Susi


I just called Don to get the info. He said all the info is on QRZ.com under
his N0BVE call sign, too.

IRLP # is 3590
WIRES 2 # is 1427

And of course the EchoLink node number for the daily Handiham net is 89680.
The net meets Monday through Saturday at 11:00 AM United States Central
Time. Everyone is welcome.

Editor's Note:

Yes, you can now access the daily Handiham net via the Yaesu Wires II
system. A list of current WIRES stations may be found online at:


There is also information about the WIRES system. 


This week at Headquarters

KG0BP and K0LR at camp

*       There is a correction in camp dates. Minnesota Radio Camp dates are
tentatively set at Sunday August 16 to Sunday August 23, 2009. Last week I
had incorrectly said August 22, which is actually a Saturday. Both Sundays
are travel days. The change to an earlier week in August will allow us to
have the entire camp week before schools and universities start classes.
This will help us recruit camp staff and school age campers. Another benefit
is that travel to Bemidji, Minnesota by economical scheduled bus service on
Sunday is an option.  
*       We are not planning a California Camp in 2009, due to budget
*       Pat, WA0TDA, is taking vacation day on Friday, but will still send
out a weekly education letter, so look for that. 
*       Tony Tretter's popular Extra Class Math tips audio tape is often
requested. Now it is available online in MP3 format in the members section.
Look in Education and then Op Skills, but I will provide a direct link in
the Friday education letter. 
*       QST, CQ, QCWA Journal, & WORLDRADIO audio digests are available for
our members. Login <http://handiham.org/user>  to the member section of the
Handiham website and find the magazine digests in the Library. The November
QST and Worldradio magazine digests have been read by Bob, N1BLF. He will
soon start the November CQ digest. 
*       The remote base was offline this past weekend after an Internet
failure. The station has now returned to service and beta testing continues.

*       We have added an "audio this week" link at the top of the member
page once you log in. This is a good place to find out what audio is new on
our website each week, including magazine digests and audio lectures. This
page is updated on Fridays. 

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@xxxxxxxxxxx or call her
toll-free at 1-866-426-3442. Mornings are the best time to contact us. 


This morning's media hits from Google News - Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Postcards <http://cosmiclog.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2008/10/21/1577741.aspx>
from space
MSNBC - 9 hours ago
When you think of ham radio, you usually think of someone hunched over a
microphone, sending their voice around the world. And that still plays a big
role in the work carried on by Amateur Radio on the International Space


ARRL <http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2008/10/21/10395/?nc=1>  Announces
New Youth Editor
ARRL - 15 hours ago
Amateur Radio runs in the MacLachlan family -- 12 family members are hams.
"I got interested in ham radio through Boy Scouts," MacLachlan said, "but it
was with family support that I got licensed. 


Boy <http://www.thevillagesdailysun.com/articles/2008/10/20/news/news03.txt>
Scouts learn about ham radios
Villages Daily Sun - Oct 20, 2008
That?s because this weekend the Scout hut is home to the Lady Lake Scouts as
they participate in the Jamboree on the Air, an event that puts Scouts
worldwide in touch with one another via ham radio. ?The main purpose for us
being here is the Scouts,? ... 


ustaad-hain--from-Oct-11/371441>  400 radio experts to chant ?Ham sab ustaad
hain? from Oct 11
Indian Express - Oct 9, 2008
To popularise Ham radio activities in the state, over 400 Ham Radio
operators from across the country will participate in a two-day national
event, HamfestIndia, from October 11. 


t-a-hobby> "Ham Radio no longer just a hobby"
RadioandMusic.com - Oct 15, 2008
During his brief speech, he emphasised that amateur radio ( or ham radio as
it is popularly called) is no longer a hobby , and is a necessity now. 


Huge alligator grabbing Pat, WA0TDAReminder:  Handiham renewals are now on a
monthly schedule - Please renew or join, as we need you to keep our program

Image: Meet our new dues collection agent! A huge alligator grabs Pat,
WA0TDA.  "Sure wish I'd renewed my Handiham dues sooner." 

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
*       Donate an extra amount of your choice to help support our
*       Discontinue your membership. 

Please return your renewal form as soon as possible. There is a postage paid
envelope provided, and you won't get a visit from you-know-who.

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@xxxxxxxxxxx> 

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


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@xxxxxxxxxxx> 

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!

Manager, Courage Handi-ham System
Reach me by email at:  <mailto:patt@xxxxxxxxxxx> 

*       Nancy, Handiham Secretary: hamradio@xxxxxxxxxxx
*       Jerry, N0VOE, Student Coordinator: jerry.kloss@xxxxxxxxxxx
*       Avery, K0HLA, Educational Coordinator: avery.finn@xxxxxxxxxxx 
*       Pat, WA0TDA, Manager, patt@xxxxxxxxxxx
*       Radio Camp email: radiocamp@xxxxxxxxxxx 


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.



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.


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  • » [handiham-world] Handiham World for the week of 22 October 2008