“Storm Watch”

Newsletter of NZ1U – The Barnstormers Contest Group

                                                            Volume 13 No.5. December 31, 2008


2008 – The Year that was or wasn’t…


I wanted to get out one more Storm Watch before 2009 so here it is.  The heading above kind of recaps the year for me and probably our efforts here at KB1H/NZ1U. We managed to get the operating in for the four major contests and actually dabbled in a few others. Some great ones were missed though like a good effort in WPX or WAG. At least we kept the streak going on CQWW DX and ARRL DX both modes. A few years back we were acknowledged with a very few others as contributing a score for the YCCC for many years in a row. That continues.


Our idea of an “Open Station” actually worked out well and I saw a few other YCCC Multi-op stations doing the same after we held our first. The second “Open Station” here produced a few new YCCC members and also one or two new crew members here at NZ1U. It was our greatest effort of the year which included refurbishing the upstairs, discarding some old stuff, and hosting the events. I believe at one time or another everyone pitched in. Thank you all.


We also managed to keep things running fairly well and it looks like we are getting through the winter with so far less problems then most of our fellow YCCCers up north. We still have a bad rotor on the 20M tower but Mark has repaired the spare and we are waiting for some warmer weather to replace the bad rotor.


What “wasn’t” this year was progress on some of our major projects. Needless to say health problems within my family and myself sure shut me down. Many of you also had your share events that limited time available to help here.  I am sure that we will recommit to these projects in 2009 and finally get to where we want to be on the new tower and refurbishing of other antennas.





Operating in 2009


One of my goals this year is to put the station on the air in as many contests as possible, even if it is a limited effort. This goal will start with the New Year, January 1, 2009. Of course we have the four majors and many other fun contests. Just tonight Jay has set up the SO2R equipment and tested for RTTY so this weekend in the ARRL RTTY Roundup NZ1U will be on the air. W1UJ, KB1NRB, and KB1H have committed to some operating.  January is a busy contest month. There is the ARRL VHF, NAQP, and CQ160 CW to mention a few. Plenty of operating and plenty of seat time available.  I will do my best to arrange and coordinate the station for each contest but of course will be asking for some help.





We always hope to put in a hard effort for this contest and again this year KB1DFB will be spearheading the effort. As usual we will run 50 – 432 Mhz. As a Multi-Limited entry. We need people to call CQ on 6M and 2M the whole contest as these bands will be separate than the 220 and 432 positions.  There have been rumors of another wager with KE1LI but that group will be in the Multi-Unlimited class. We can still compare the lower four bands for the wager. Again, the commitments thus far are KB1DFB, KB1H, W1UJ, and KB1NRB. We need more help! This contest runs from 2PM local time on Saturday until 11PM local time Sunday. A long and usually boring contest but you have to be in the seat so as not to miss those rare enhanced conditions. Who wants to help? Last year we had a BIG snow storm and operators were lost to snow plowing.  Also when the Senior Bus stops running in the snow we lose a few operators. It would be great to have a few people volunteer for the overnight shift.


What about our Christmas Party??


I have not forgotten! I have asked about dates and most of you have said any date is good. Right now January 10 is too soon. Besides, I have gotten word from our brewmaster that the beer would not be ready. January 17 is the VHF contest so that is out. January 24 is the CQWW 160 CW contest and though we have partied during this before I have been playing with the idea of having a serious effort. January 31 seems to be OK with everyone but I may have a trip to Canada then. There is the NAQP contest scattered in January too so most weekends have something going on. I am leaning heavy towards January 24 or 31. I hope to make the decision in the next week or so and will send out a special notice. I even have chosen the “K1GX Award” recipient for this year. There will also be a few gifts for the major contributors to our efforts this past year.



Brothers from a different mother…


The other night Mary and I watched the documentary of a recent Rolling Stones concert in New York City. The DVD was titled “Shine a light” We were both convinced that the drummer Charlie Watts is Vic’s , N4XR, twin brother!  It looks like Vic only has a few years on Mr. Watts.



Many Thanks to you all


I want to thank all of you who have helped this past year and also all the well wishes that were sent through Alain, Mary’s, and my health problems. I feel we had a fairly fun year and I am looking forward to finishing a few projects this year and enjoying the operating time we get to spend.  There has been allot of laughs and great moments and I want them to continue! With the talent and bunch of guys we have I am sure it will.


Happy New Year to All!!!!