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January / February 2014                                                                                                                         Volume 4, Issue 1

WSSM Members Teach Intro to Ham Radio Class
Peleton Labs, Portland, ME

by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ


PORTLAND, ME -  On February 19th, WSSM members Thom Watson W1WMG and Tim Watson KB1HNZ taught an Intro to Ham Radio course at Peleton Labs in Portland. The course was hosted by Stuart Thomas KB1HQS, of Preparedness Associates, and covered a variety of concepts, including the radio spectrum, HF propagation, operating techniques, and how to pursue earning a Technician class license.

Full Story

WSSM Members To Teach Course for Wells / Ogunquit Adult Education

Intro to Ham Radio
by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

 adult ed 

On Tuesday, May 6th, WSSM members will teach a 2 hour course introducing Amateur Radio to students of Wells / Ogunquit Adult Education. The course, which requires preregistration, is designed to launch students on the path toward earning their first ham radio license. More information will become available as soon as the Spring catalog is published. 

QSL Corner
w9ims brickyard

Here's a QSL card received recently by WS1SM for a 40m SSB QSO at 1453 UTC on August 18th during this year's ILLW.

See more QS:'s

Product Review: GWhip End-Fed Zepp Antennas

Portland, ME
by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

GORHAM, ME -  During most of last year's activities we deployed a pair of end-fed zepp antennas manufactured by GWhip Antenna Products, in England. These zepps are tough, utilyzing a 1/2 wave kevlar reinforced transmission line with a metal eyelet on one end, and a unique matching circuit that eliminates the need for a traditional counterpoise, on the other.

Full Story

DX News
February 26 - April 14

by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ


The close of 2013 and first months of the new year have seen lots of DX activity, including the 9L1A activation of Sierra Leone and expeditions to the Seychelles (S79ACR), Laos (XW0YJY), South Cook Island (E51CDW), and Montserrat (VP2M).

Full Story

A Closer Look at  HamAntCalc
Developed by  J Garber

by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

Ham CalcHam Calc

We'll take a look at Ham Calc, which is a helpful tool for calculating antenna measurements in the field.

Full Story

Upcoming Meetings

March 13th - from 7PM-9PM at the Gorham Recreation Department

April 10th - from 7PM-9PM at the Gorham Recreation Department


Welcome New Members

Check out the ads on page 2 to view items for sale, upcoming hamfests, announcements, and wanted items.

The Wireless Society of Southern Maine would like to welcome the following new members:  LaMont Green, of Old Orchard Beach, ME, and Thomas Perron, of Falls Church, VA.

Happy St. Patricks Day
From the Editor's Desk

Thinking Spring

Although it seems like winter will never end, and a blizzard forced us to cancel the last monthly meeting, Spring is fast approaching, (at least according to the calendar). This means its time to plan for SOTA expeditions, and summer activities, including Field Day, and lighthouse events.

On Wednesdays in March, WSSM members will teach Amateur Radio to the South Portland Air National Guard, and we plan on offering a SKYWARN training session at the Gorham Recreation Department in mid April - furthering our commitment to education and community involvement.

Many are looking forward to Field Day, which will take place during the last weekend in June at Wassamki Springs Campground, in Scarborough. Rick K1OT, has been enthusiastic about his plans to assemble a standalone CW station, and he's been actively recruiting more operators. In addition to this, we plan on replicating our setup from last year, while improving our ability to operate adjacent bands with better filtering.

In recent weeks we've been finalizing details for an IOTA and Lighthouse expedition in late July, where WS1SM expects to be QRV for the RSGB IOTA contest. More information will be announced soon.

Even though I like to think warm thoughts while working on my winter projects, the last couple months have brought some great conditions for DX, and some of the first contests of the year, including the UBA (Belgian) and REF (French) HF contests, and the Maine 2 Meter FM Simplex Challenge, which took place February 16th.

I had a great time during the UBA contest, trying out a new HF transciever for the first time, and together with Thom W1WMG, Dave KB1FGF, and Sebastien Ames, who operated club station WS1SM, we had an awesome time going mobile during the 2 Meter Challenge - each of us achieving personal best scores. It was great to hear all the activity on the air as we traveled around, and hopefully everyone else enjoyed the event as well.

Till next issue,


Tim Watson