KD6PAG Amateur Radio Pages

Most recent updates 98-Jan-03.

Note: This site was not been updated in quite some time, so many links will be funky for now!


To aid in giving faster access to information, here are some jump points:

1. Organizations *
2. Projects *
3. Electronics Companies *
4. Local Amateurs
5. Rules and Regulations
6. 'Lowfer' Band
7. Satellite and Packet
8. Antennas
9. FTP sites *
10. Unfiled Links and Past Chaos
* Quick jump you to associated page.

1. Organizations

There are quite a number of organizations which are involved in amateur radio, too numerous to list here, and are described in a separate page. Organizations described herein include American Radio Relay League , AMSAT , Tucson Amateur Packet Radio , Newsline , Texas A&M University Amateur Radio Club , Northern California Packet Association , International Digital Radio Association.

2. Projects

There are starting to be projects available on-line, and more would be appreciated. The quality of these vary considerably. Some of the projects mentioned here include and a few more. 2 Meter J-pole from twin-lead , 'Copper Cactus' , Modifying a Radio Shack FM beam for 2 meters , Phone flasher , 2m/70cm Diplexer , Voice Keyer , Converting cheap 49 MHz walkie-talkies to 6 Meters , L pads and T pads , Folded Monopole for 440 MHz

3. Electronics Companies

There were only a few companies with useful WWW pages when this started, but many more are coming on-line every month. Here are a few pointers to electronics companies of interest to amateurs. [Alas, that section is seriously in need of updating] How many of these will deal directly with amateurs is not clear, but there are at least a few distributors who seem be willing to handle small orders and/or deal with individuals. Some of these will give you on-line price/availability information.

4. Local Amateurs

N6FRI has an extensive set of WWW pages. See of his interests include frequency co-ordination, APRS, antennas, emergency operations, and more. In the Bay Area, you used to find him on 440.25+ pl 100 [if he wasn't talking on the phone...] and but the cAVe repeater is no more. He now resides in Vermont and is new callsign is K1OOO (still at cave.org. I miss his occasional visits to local Berkeley coffeehouse and his accounts of the antics of the local pirate radio community. Bruce Perens AB6YM is involved in LINUX, high-speed packet, and is also involved in monitoring the FCC. His Amateur Radio page is at http://www.hams.com/perens/HamRadio/ and there is also lots of good material there, including things like mods for surplus Motorola gear.

Alan Judd N6VUD started the Chicken Net (which meets most events at 10pm on 145.19+) and owns/operates the local 440.775+ repeater, which used to be linked to 440.25+. He has just created his own Web page. A few other 'chickens' with WWW pages include KE6TIS and KM6XU.

KA6EYH has an FTP site: muncey.com (or with lots of interesting stuff. KA6EYH is active locally in terms of both packet and co-ordination issues. [This server appears to be out of order for the moment...]

WA6ZJG is an ATV enthusiast who operates a live Internet camera including WWW accessible remote control.

Not quite a local, Phil Karn, KA9Q, has an extensive home page, including his NOS TCP/IP package and a new 1200 bps modem proposal for satellite transponder use.

5. Rules and Regulations

We are regulated by the FCC, under what is known as Part 97, the Amateur Radio Service. The FCC has a Web server, but you'll need to look among various other things under the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau (and probably elsewhere as well) to find things related to Amateur Radio. It's best if you know how to "speak English like a bureaucrat" to understand most of it. They're working on it, and eventually it should be a lot better, but you may have to dig even harder for a little while. There is also a page on the FCC called An FCC Watcher's Co-op which will help you find interesting information on the FCC's Internet server.

It is also possible to operate in certain other bands without a license, but the technical details may be more difficult, and you have to go through a complicated process to if you build more than one devices under Part 15 according to according to KE4ZV. (Actually, you can build up to five... and the requirements for individuals are somewhat relaxed) If you can live with the power limitations, there's a lot of opportunity for random hacking. You might find Part 15 interesting reading...

Lots of people ask, so here's where to find Form 610 (in .pdf) format. You'll need to use this or a paper copy if you change your address, and the old copies from several years ago are no longer valid. The most commonly used callsign server is via the University of Arkansas at Little Rock's Amateur Radio Club Home Page, although QRZ.Com also lists some e-mail addresses and WWW pages.

Finally, those of us who live or are visiting California have special provisions for dealing with jammers who interfere with emergency communications.

6. 'Lowfer' Band

This is a different kind of amateur radio; in a sense, harder to do than a working the conventional amateur bands. If you interested in the license-free 'lowfer' band (160-190 KHz), there exists a newsletter and also a local enthusiast looking for other people. As far as the formal regulations, there is brief mention of this in Part 15.217 and perhaps the rest of Part 15 says more on this. [It does not appear to be mentioned in the summary for Part 95 (CB, R/C and GMRS), so is this governed entirely by Part 15? -- KD6PAG ]

7. Satellite and Packet

Just because you only have a "no-code" Technician license, that doesn't mean you can't talk to the rest of the world, just some of it. There are a number of amateur satellites and a page discussing space communications. If you think you can work Californa via AO-27 or Mir (which could include all fifty states with good equipment), check these pages to see if i've got your state or grid square yet or write me to set up a schedule.

Much space communication is done using packet radio. Here are a rather disorganized packet page.

8. Antennas

Antennas is one area of homebrewing which can be both inexpensive and very sophisticated. It can also be frustrated, trying to understand what went wrong when an new antenna doesn't work (or perhaps an old one fails). Recently, I found NEC2, which simulates antennas, and now I can experiment in front of the console and not spend hours (possibly days) finding out that some idea just doesn't work. There's nice software which acts as a front end to NEC2 and other simulators, but I wanted to run NEC2 on something besides a PC or Mac. So, I wrote my own front end, and here's my first exploration, of the 3 element yagi.

W4RNL's site has alot of good antenna information. Also, AB5P has a program for designing Log Perodics, alas only available for MSDOS or Windows.

9. FTP sites

There is large FTP archive at FTP.UCSD.Edu, and an annotated guide to the archive at FTP.CS.Buffalo.Edu. Details on these and other FTP servers are on a separate FTP page.

10. Unfiled Links and Past Chaos

Not everything has been changed over to the new format. Some things are difficult to file, and others just take time. If you're looking for some of the old good stuff, the remnants from the old home page may still contain what you're looking for.

There is now also a 'to be filed' page, which has things that I look interesting but I haven't had a chance to examine carefully yet. And last, but not least, is the World Famous Chicken Net which meets almost every night at 10pm on 145.19- pl 88.5, from the town of Guerneville, but folks at least as far south as San Francisco often check-in as well. Much south of there, you might have to fight with the IBM repeater in San Jose, but a beam'll keep you out of trouble, and who knows, someday they'll even go to full-time PL. (In fact, if you forget the URL for this page, you can always find it by looking on http://www.chicken.net.)

If i'm on the air, you're likely to find me on 440.775+ pl 100 or 145.19- PL 88.5 [PL 162.2 if i'm at home and the Chicken Net repeater is quiet) (n.b. The cAVe repeater (formerly 440.25+) seems to have gone into hibernation for the winter). Occasionally, i can also be found on 145.11- pl 82.5 unless i'm preparing chai [rather than coffee these days], trying to hear a satellite, and possibly even asleep). - KD6PAG
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