"Letters From The AMARC Club Repeater Users"

On 4-22-3 Doug Hilton (KCLGB) [email protected] writes:

Enjoyed our QSO today on EchoLink. I am presently the president of our local club Jones County Amateur Radio CLub. WE are thinking about linking our 145.39 repeater with the system. I also enjoyed browsing your site 73 Doug KCLGB Martelle, IA

On 3-22-3 Stephen Penrose (KCNIE) writes:

To Bernard - WBDR,

I enjoyed our QSO today and per your request here is the name/ID of the Echolink-repeater's operator, Paul Schipp - KWRU.

I always enjoy making "RF" contacts using the echolink although I have been reading some conflicting viewpoints about Echolink with regard to if it is REALLY "HAM".

Allow me to add my comments. As a new ham, I recognize that QSOs via the "wired" aspect of echolink (bypassing RF) isn't "technically" HAM However, In my view Echolink IS and WILL CONTINUE to be a valuable tool.

Let me share some of my own Echolink experiences. First it allows me to "practice" operating procedures, although most of these contacts are really "chatroom". Occasionally I make a "REAL" QSO when a ham connects to the echo link using RF; in fact, today I made my first REAL overseas QSO today (BRAZIL) using my HTX22 to connect to using K0WRU's 147.925 machine.

Recently, I "chatted" with a HAM in Kuwait that uses the Echolink to QSO his buddies on the US West Coast because rooftop antennas were ordered taken down after the Gulf War.

I "chatted" with a HAM living in an apartment in TelAviv that uses Echolink to avoid RFI to neighbors.

Another "HAM" on a ranch in NZ uses echolink allowing him to use a HT to connect to his "shack" and links a local repeater.

Finally, my non-HAM 6th grader son was able to practice a few French phrases using Echolink to contact France (I was probably more excited about this than he was).

I guess the number of applications and uses are only limited to the imagination and ingenuity of the HAM operators experimenting with this particular mode of communication. And after all, isn't this what HAM is all about? The hobby has certainly come a long way since the days of winding wires around oatmeal boxes!

Anyway, as far as Im concerned, I'm happy that fine people like KRWU operate repeaters (I'll call them HYBRID systems) that link to the internet.

I guess there are always some that are stubbornly loyal to their old technology i.e., rear wheel drive, phonograph records, 35mm photography, IBM selectric typewriters, ... you get the idea. New ideas always meet resistance and echolink is one of those.

But how else is new blood ever going to be exposed or attracted to Amateur Radio unless they can be wooed away from the internet. I'm happy that I finally pursued this childhood interest even though it took over 3 years.

BTW, since the only "rig" I own is the 2 meter HT, echolink certainly expands my range.

73's Stephen KCNIE

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