January / February
Volume 4, Issue 1
WSSM Members Teach Intro to Ham Radio Class
Tim Watson, KB1HNZ
ME - On February 19th, WSSM members Thom Watson W1WMG and Tim
Watson KB1HNZ taught an Intro to Ham
Radio course at Peleton Labs in
was hosted by Stuart Thomas KB1HQS, of
Preparedness Associates, and covered a variety of concepts, including
an introduction to the radio spectrum, HF propagation, operating
techniques, and how to
pursue earning a Technician class license.
Portland was blanketed in snow on the evening of the 19th, everyone who
was expected made the trip, and all of them seemed to enjoy it.
many stuck around to take a closer look at a station that was setup for
station setup at Peleton Labs, in Portland.
"Students had varying reasons for wanting to earn their license," said
Thom Watson W1WMG, "and all of them appreciated the capabilities and
versatilty that ham radio offered. One group was interested in amateur
radio to improve their ability to communicate over greater
distances during Off-Road events."
Thanks to Stuart for hosting the class and to everyone who ventured out
on a snowy night to take part.
Review: GWhip End-Fed Zepp
Tim Watson, KB1HNZ
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
Of our two Gwhips - one cut for 20 meters, and the other for 15 - the
20 meter mono bander saw the most use throughout 2013. We set it up for
the first time
at Wassamki Springs during an informal meeting, when Steve K1EOE,
brought in a completely portable station, and we needed something we
could put up in a hurry. The antenna was easily
deployed as a sloper, and tuned up nicely on the SSB portion of the
band. It performed impressively, despite its location being relatively
close to the building, and our 3rd contact that night was with an A41.
The GWhip End-Fed antenna, according to their website, is an end fed
"but with a difference!" They incorporate approximately 1/2 wave length
wire radiator and also a GWhip resonant circuit contained in a
waterproof resin box, fitted with a low loss Teflon/PTFE UHF
connector for coax-feed. They are ready to go with no required
adjustment as each unit is hand built and tested individually.
Both of our GWhips were deployed during our ILLW expedition to Pemaquid
Light in August, where the need for only one leg to be raised was
ideal because of a lack of trees in the area we were setup in. Both
antennas worked very well, and setup and take-down was simple and fast.
During our SOTA expedition to Douglas Mountain, portability became
their chief asset as we hiked a long and steep trail to the summit, and
then set the two GWhips up as slopers, using the stone summit tower as
purchased our GWhips from Ian Ross M0CZV of RossComm Radio
Communications, in Fareham, and he showed much interest in our
activities and how we made use of the antennas. GWhip antennas are
manufactured in England and have a rich history. The company was
founded in 1967 by Frank GW3DZ, who designed a resonant center-fed
mobile antenna system that required no tuner.
For more information on the product, and to learn more about the wide
variety fo GWhip antennas available, please click here.
You can also visit RossComm Communications.
A Closer Look at HamAntCalc
Developed by J Garber
Tim Watson, KB1HNZ
by Joseph Garber, HamAntCalc is an ideal tool to help you decide the
starting length of an antenna, whether you're in the field, or building
one for the backyard. HamAntCalc is intuitive, simple to use, and
offers a variety of antenna types, including Dipoles, Inverted Vee's,
Verticals, and it has a page for calculating 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, 5/8, and
'full wave' length, using the formula (468/ freq. in MHz) = 1/2 wave in
feet and inches. HamAntCalc is also capable of calculating in metric
lengths as well.
Although no antenna calculator can promise exact results in every case,
due to variables such as gage and type of wire used, height above
ground, the geology of the ground itself, and nearby objects, the app
does eliminate the need for a scratch pad, and allows you to arrive
near the correct length very quickly. Keep in mind its always good
practice to leave a little extra wire so you can fine tune to the
desired SWR by trimming.
HamAntCalc techically has the ability to calculate from 30-500MH, but
it performs best at frequencies below 54 MHz.
The app couldn't be more intuitive. Select the type of antenna you'd
like to build by pressing one of the buttons across the bottom bar.
Then, choose a frequency, and press 'calculate.'
A complete set of instructions, as well as useful tips are available by
pressing the 'Instructions' button (also in the bottom bar).
The app works independednt of cellular or WiFi service, which is
especially helpful if you plan on venturing to a mountaintop or island.
Its available on iTunes by clicking here, or searching the App Store on any
February 26 - April 14
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). The most publicized DXPedition was certainly the
FT5ZM activation of Amsterdam Island by an international team in early
February, and several of my friends in Maine and around the world were
able to work them on a number of bands. As we glance at the months
there's plenty to look forward to, including 3C0BYP from Annoban
Island, an expedition to Mellish Reef (VK9MT) in late March, and a pair
of expeditions to Palau.
Have fun searching the bands and until next time, good DX!
02/28 - 03/17
03/01 - 03/11
03/01 - 03/28
03/03 - 03/10
03/03 - 03/12
03/10 - 03/18
03/14 - 04/11
03/20 - 04/01
03/21 - 04/04
03/23 - 03/31
03/28 - 04/09
04/02 - 04/14
04/04 - 04/18
04/08 - 04/17
04/09 - 04/17
04/11 - 04/14
04/29 - 05/07
|By EA5BYP from AF-039; HF; cw, ssb,
RTTY; QSL via EA5BYP
By Italian DXpedition Team; HF; cw, ssb, digital; QSL via I2YSB
By K7CO; 80-10m, cw, ssb, psk31; QSL via K7CO
By ON4AVT; HF; mostly psk; QSL via ON4AVT
By G3PJT; QRV for RSGB Commonwealth Contest (March 8-9); HF
By G3RWF, from Kigali; HF; cw, ssb; 100w with an inverted V
By KC1SQ; sailboat mobile out of Placencia
By IK2GZU from Llembula; HF; QSL via Buro or Direct
By G3BJ and others; from OC-114; HF; cw, ssb, RTTY; QSL via G3TXF
By DL7BC; 20-10m; mostly cw; QSL via DARC Buro or direct
By K0UU from Beqa I (OC-016); 80-10m; cw; QSL Direct via K0UU
By M0URX and others; HF
By N7QT and others; 80-10m; cw, ssb; QSL via N7QT Direct or Buro
By DJ2VO and others; 160-10m; cw, ssb, RTTY
By DF8DX; 40-10m; cw, ssb; QSL Direct via DF8DX
By JA2NQG; cw; QRV for JIDX CW; QSL Direct via JA2NQG
By ZL3TE from OC-016; QRV for JIDX CW; cw, some digital
By JR3STX; 80-6m; cw, ssb, RTTY; QSL Direct via JR3STX
page 1, we show a card received by WS1SM for a 20m QSO with W9IMS
during the Brickyard 400 NASCAR race last August. In 2013, WS1SM was
able to work all 3 special events, which celebrate the premier races at
the speedway. You'll find images of these below, along with a QSL for a
20m QSO with YO/KB1HNZ from MM3STM while operating portable in
If you received an interesting QSL
yourself that you'd like to show off, please send a digital image to [email protected]
and we'll be sure to publish it in an upcoming issue.
|W9IMS - 14 MHz QSO with WS1SM on 22 May 2013 at
0129 UTC - QSL for special event operation celebrating the 97th
|W9IMS - 14 MHz QSO with WS1SM on 23 July 2013
at 2345 UTC - QSL for special event operation celebrating the 20th
|W9IMS - 14 MHz QSO with WS1SM on 12 August
2013 at 2311 UTC - QSL for special event operation celebrating the 2014
Red Bull Moto GP.
|MM3STM - 14
MHz QSO with YO/KB1HNZ on 4 August 2013 at 0728 UTC - QSL features the
St. Mirren Football Club, which plays in the Scottish Premier League.
you have any items for sale, contact one of our members to have it
listed here, or send an email to: [email protected]
with a brief description and contact information.
Maine State Convention -
Lewsiton, ME - March
28, 2014. (8am-12pm) Location: Ramada Inn, 490 Pleasant Street,
Lewiston, ME. For more info: http://www.w1npp.org
April 19, 2014. Location: Stewart Morrill American Legion Post #35, 413
Broadway, South Portland, ME. For more info, contact: [email protected]
March 15, 2014. Location: North Conway Community Center, 2628 White
Mountain Highway, North Conway, NH. For more info, visit: http://www.w1mwv.com
- MIT Radio Exam Team. Starting at 7:30pm. Location: MIT Campus, 77
Massachusetts Ave, Room 1-150 MIT, Cambridge, MA 02139. Call: (617)
253-3776 for more info.
have any items for trade, contact one of our members to have it listed
here. Send an email to: [email protected]
with a brief
description and contact information.
you offer any ham radio related services, for example, if you repair
meters or radios, build your own transmitters, make QSL cards to order,
or rebuild microphones, you may list these services here.
Looking for a small
crank-up tower for Field Day (in Maine only). Please contact K1OT at [email protected]
there are any items you may be looking for, use this space to get the
word out. Just send an email to [email protected], or mention it at
an upcoming meeting.
advertisements are listed for FREE. Advertising shall pertain to
products and services which are related to amateur radio. No
advertisement may use more than 40 words. Please send a description of
items for sale, wants, or services to Thom Watson at [email protected],
or bring it to an upcoming meeting of the Wireless Society of Southern
Maine. All ads will be printed one time, unless renewed.