Friday, June 10, 2016

CQ 29.6

To the PNWVHF discussion group

> Ssb/fm 50, 144, 432 mhz

Not that the typical VHF bands are crowded, but do thoughts of operation ever drop to 10 meters.  The FM segment, typically 29.6 simplex, has operating characteristics similar to FM on 6 meters.  Most of the time it's dead quiet, then it opens up and the world comes rolling in.

I recently discovered, acquired (thanks HRO Portland) and yesterday installed the Diamond CP-610 vertical for 6 and 10 meters.

My idea is to use this for typically FM operation.  Scanning with the FT8900 when I'm in the shack and switching over to old slow packet when I'm not in.

So far, without trying to key up repeaters, I've worked the remote base in Shelton and that's it on 52.525.  Calling and calling on 29.6 returns nothing but static.  Surprising how much static there is even on FM.

So - anybody else playing on 29.6 and 52.525?

Bill, WA7NWP

Friday, March 18, 2016

Ham Share PIXIE project

Registering for the Auburn, WA.  One Day Build a QRP 40 Meter CW Radio Workshop.

HAMSHARE presents: "RF 40 Meter TxRx Workshop
Build and Operate a working RF 40 Meter Transmitter and Receiver  on 7.030MHz Using a PIXIE TxRx Do-It-Yourself Kit with Sidetone. (ver 4.1)
On Saturday  APRIL 30th, 2016  @  9AM ~ 5PM  and Also again on Saturday July 23rd, 2016 @9AM to 5PM
  In The Clubhouse at The River  3611 "I" St NE, Auburn, WA 98002
  37th and "I" Street NE. in North Auburn, WA. 98002 (Go East to Clubhouse)
  Lunch is ~12:30Noon to 1:30PM   ( at Various Local Venues)  

This Workshop is Open to All FCC Licensed Amateur Radio Operators

Learn to:   Build & Construct a Working  40 Meter RF Transmitter and Receiver

What you should bring to the Workshop:
Bring small hand tools:
    Small Diagonal Wire Cutter (Flush Cut style)(#90708  5inch Micro Flush Cutter by Harbor Freight Tools)    
    Needle-nose Pliers.
    60 Watt+ Solder Iron, and Solder, and Tip-Cleaning-Sponge or Wire-Ball (EBAY )
    110Volt AC Multi-Outlet Power strip.
    10 to 25 foot long AC Extension power Cord.

OK to bring Food (Lunch) and Covered Drinks OK! 
Food Available at: (Subway)  (Jack-in-the-Box)
     (Yes Jimmy Johns Delivers: 1835 Auburn Way N, Auburn, WA 98002  (253) 939-3000)
Microwave Available.

Clubhouse is a Non-Smoking-Vapeing facility. (no Alcohol) 

 Cost: $15.00 Workshop Fee at the Door. (Kit is included)

 To register, email the following information:

1. Your Name:_________________________________

2. Your Ham Radio Call sign:  _______________________

3. Your Contact Phone Number:_____________________

4. Your Email address:  ____________________________

5.  Class #  2016-04-30-PIXIE-TxRx      
     or     Class# 2016-07-23-PIXIE-TxRx

Send To:                    


In order to see all of the small parts up close, You may wish to bring a pair of Strong Reading Glasses ~ 3.25+ Diopter 
( The local Dollar stores have great selections at a great price)

73 de Bill KL7BB

When you sign up ask Bill to send you the original email with the photos of the circuit board and parts list so you can print them to bring with you - I'm having trouble getting them into this message...  Curt.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Meraki Mesh

My first experience with WIFI Mesh was with some Meraki nodes.   These we an offshoot of the MIT Roofnet project.

I recently acquired a couple more nodes so thought I'd fire them up and see if they still work.  They do and signed right in to the Meraki management dashboard.  It's always a good sign when a company supports things this well.

Meraki Dashboard

Monday, February 22, 2016

Pinging the International Space Station thanks to APRS and the ISS Robot

>    I haven't had a response from the ISS robot for a couple days.Quite the contrary this morning.  Today was an example of one of the reasons why I start my day with an ISS robot ping.

Parked the car in the high point of the parking lot which seems to work a bit better and sent out  my first query.  Response was almost instantaneous.  Not only that but it took a couple seconds to register that the next pass was a whole minute away.

  2016-02-22 09:50:33 PST: WA7NWP-9>ISS: 1
  2016-02-22 09:50:34 PST: ISS>WA7NWP-9: AOS 1m2s S SE^8 E 8m

Wow.  Lucky morning.  Seems a low pass which I wouldn't ordinarily be interested in but what the heck.   Switched from the PM4 (96UHF on 440.800) over to PM5 (144.825 digi via RS0ISS) and listened.  Was surprised to hear a weak packet.   So I beaconed a few times.  Once it appeared I heard a digipeat of my packet but it was much weaker than the first packet and still nothing decoded on the mobile.

So heard two weak packets.  Probably ISS and that alone was cool and worth the effort.   Came in and checked the page .    Yeah!

There I am the sole station representing the PNW.   Been a long time since I was on the ariss map - always a kick.

Checked my heard packets and I see there were two iGates that picked me up..


So - Thank you Lynn for the robot.   It worked well this morning.

Bill, WA7NWP

Update.   I was curious where the two stations were that heard my packets.

NA5SS is in Albuquerue using a Raspberry PI.

 NA5SS-10 · center · zoom · info
2016-02-12 20:36:18 - 2016-02-23 08:04:17
PyMultimonAPRS RX Only SAT-iGate
Raspberry Pi with RTL-SDR dongle on 145.825Mhz

The other receiving station, KG6HSQ, is in Southern California between LA and San Diego.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Entering ARRL Contests

> I have an easy logbook for contest; N3FPJ’s stuff works good for me.
At the PNW gathering, there was talk of what could be done to increase activity in contests.   During the discussion it came to me that the whole reason I haven't had my call in the last hundred or so contests was because I wasn't set up with a logging program.   Sure I should - and someday I will - when everything else on the list is done... Until then, I'm using the simple, quick and easy log for my memorable contacts - like my first DStar ping on Sunday.

It was that easy to exchange a couple reports and get my call in the contest - I'm sure I (and thousands others!!!) would be doing it.

Friday, January 15, 2016


Ham radio enabled (more than that - created?  what's the word?) Local Area Network.

A play off the Hamwan folks..

Focus is RF (no direct internet operation - some limited Internet Resource Gateways)

Log in with Captive portal

Messaging via 'groups' even for individuals.

Slowest and resource discovery via APRS 1200 baud.

Others supported:
  regular packet
  soundcard faster packet
  5.9 GHz wifi
  channel -2 wifi

Use 'real' WIFI for Access and some inter-node content sharing

It's not a success until you're fired.

List the ranges of participation...