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       Spring 2016                                                                                                                                    Volume 6, Issue 1     
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ECT Constitution Adopted

Gorham, ME
by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

WSSM-ECT logo   
GORHAM, ME - On February 18th, members of the WSSM formally established the WSSM Emergency Communications Team, with a unanimous vote of approval.

The new constitution allows for the Emergency Team to grow as its role in the community is further developed. The first step toward accomplishing this was to make membership free for any licensed ham with an interest in emergency communications.

The ECT also applied for a club call sign, and will participate in portable operations and training excercises as WS1EC. The vanity callsign was applied for on March 31st and granted on May 13th after a petition was filed.

For more information about the WSSM-ECT, and how you can join the team, please click here.

EMA Station Updates
CCEMA Bunker

by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

WINDHAM, ME -  The Emergency Communications Team have been active throughout the Winter and Spring, making improvements to the station at the EMA bunker in Windham. The most noticeable updates took place on Thursday, March 31st, and further progress has been made during the subsequent meetings.

Thanks to Charlie, W1CPS, who designed and built a pair of wooden shelves, we were able to better utilyze the space available to us, adding a writing area and a separation between the VHF and HF stations. Charlie created a third shelf, installed on April 7th, which allowed us to expand further down the counter to make room for a DMR VHF station.

Paul works on wiring the battery backup   Ryan reorganizes the VHF station

Ryan KB1YTR, Thom W1WMG, and Paul KJ6JBH, all worked hard at rewiring the stations, which included adding a new battery backup, a common ground bus, and Anderson Powerpole connectors to all the power cables.

shelf   shelves installed

In the fall, several team members helped install a new antenna for HF, so the FT950 on site is fully operable, and the VHF station was reprogrammed with updated simplex and repeater frequencies, and put to the test in February during the annual 2 Meter FM Simplex Challenge.

In early May, a DMR radio was installed in the space made availabe with the installation of the third shelf that Charlie built. The radio was programmed with all the current Maine DMR repeaters, as well as others throughout Northern New England, DMR Simplex, and a number of analog VHF channels.

Most recently, the team has focused on setting up digital capability for the VHF and HF stations, installing a pair of Signalink USB interfaces and programming software such as FLDigi, and RMS Express. The next phase will involve the development of training materials so that any operator who arrives will have the confidence and expertise to use the equipment.

   HF Station   DMR Station

WSSM at the Maine State ARRL Convention
ARRL Hamfest, Auburn, ME

by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

Some of the WSSM members in attendance pose for a picture   Kits 'n Pieces

AUBURN, ME - For the 5th consecutive year, the WSSM setup a booth at the Maine State ARRL Convention, promoting Amateur Radio as well as club activities, contests, and awards. The event was also a great opportunity to meet new folks and club members who we don't see on a regular basis.

Maine State ARRL Convention
In front of the WSSM booth

Some in attendance took part in the many seminars, including Dave Hawke's DMR presentation, which was one of the most popular seminars of the afternoon.

Besides the usual flea market items and vendors to browse, there was also an exam session for anyone looking to get licensed or make an upgrade.

WS1SM Team to Activate Portland Head Light for ILLW
August 20-21, 2016
by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

Portland Head Light


The WS1SM Team will activate Portland Head light during this year's International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend, which will take place August 20-21st.

Portland Head Light, which was commissioned in 1787 by George Washington, is the oldest lighthouse in Maine. It was first lit
on January 10, 1791 using Whale Oil Lamps for illumination. A fourth order Fresnel lens was installed in 1855, replaced by a second order Fresnel lens.

The current lens is a DCB-224 Aero Beacon, which was installed in 1991. The focal height is 101 feet (31 meters), with a visible range of 24 nautical miles, from a 400 watt metal halide lamp rated at 36,000 lumens of light.

In 1973 Portland Head Light was added to the National Register of Historic Places. The surrounding Ft. Williams park is a beautifully landscaped ground with field and picnic areas. Its a popular destination for travellers and locals alike, and was often a point of inspiration to the poet, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, who immortalized Portland Head Light with his poem, The Lighthouse.

"Sail on!" it says, "sail on, ye stately ships!
And with your floating bridge the ocean span;
Be mine to guard this light from all eclipse,
Be yours to bring man nearer unto man!"
Excerpt from Longfellow's The Lighthouse

VE Exam in Gorham

ARRL VE Session, March 17th
by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

GORHAM, ME - On March 17th, the WSSM VE Team hosted an exam session at the Gorham Recreation Department.

VE's present included Ron Vaugh KC1AOT, Thom Watson W1WMG, Troy Dennen NW1B, Ryan Michaelson KB1YTR, Frank Allen W1FRA, and Tim Watson KB1HNZ.

Among the twenty who turned out to try for either a new license or an upgrade, and everyone did well, passing the original test they came to take. Only a few who attempted an additional upgrade after passing their first one, didn't succeed.
VE Exam

We'd like to congratulate everyone who came to the exam, and invite candidates to our next one, which is scheduled for June 2nd, at the CCEMA Bunker on 22 High Street, in Windham. The start time will be 7:00pm. Good luck!

WSSM Members Provide Communications for MS Walk

Walk MS Portland
by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

On Saturday, April 23rd, WSSM members, including David Wood KB1FGF, Stefania Watson K1GJY, and Tim Watson KB1HNZ, provided communications support for the MS Walk in Portland, ME.

Stefania was assigned to the headquarters station, in charge of relaying distress, medical, and informational messages received from the walking route to the event coordinators. Dave was assigned to "Rest Stop 1," which was situated about a mile away, and Tim was assigned to "Rest Stop 2," located at the route's furthest point.

Dave KB1FGF   Along the Back Cove Trail

The walk route began at the Portland Expo building, went down Deering Avenue and along Bedford Street, near the University of Southern Maine's Portland Campus. It then crossed Forest Avenue to Baxter Boulevard, continuing along the Back Cove Trail, and then returned to the Expo building. The headquarters and center of activity was at the Expo. "Rest stop 1" was located at Back Cove Park, while "Rest Stop 2" was across from the Chevrus High School playing fields, along the Back Cove Trail.

walkers near Rest Stop 2   The ganga at Rest Stop 2 cheer on the first group of walkers

We were able to make direct contact between all the areas for most of the event, with some dropouts between the 1st Rest Stop and headquarters occasionally, although, to our surprise, the 2nd Rest Stop had good communications with both of the other stations for all but the walk over there. We suspect Dave had trouble because USM's Glickman Library building was situated directly between his location and the Expo, but we had him move around a bit until his signal improved, and eventually it did. The good thing is that even if that wasn't possible, we were still able to relay his reports between Rest Stop 2 and HQ.

Altogether, the excercise was a good one for everyone involved, and we look forward to helping out again in the future.

DX News
March 12 - May 02
by Tim Watson, KB1HNZ

There's been a lot happening in the world of DX since our last issue, and its been a lot of fun chasing the new ones over the winter. Active in recent months were Palmyra Island (K5P) and Guinea (3XY1T), in January and February, as well as the more recent DXpeditions to San Andres and Providencia (5J0P), in early March, and expeditions to Heard Island (VK0EK) and Juan de Nova (FT4JA). In the weeks ahead, we look forward to expeditions to the Maldives, Easter Island, the Seychelles, Mauritius, and Norfolk Island, among others.

For more information about upcoming announced DXpeditions, click here for the latest 425 DX News, by Mauro Pregliasco I1JQJ.

04/23 - 06/30
05/24 - 06/03
05/25 - 06/08
05/27 - 06/15
05/28 - 05/29
05/28 - 05/29
06/02 - 06/07
06/03 - 06/17
06/05 - 06/23
06/07 - 06/09
06/09 - 06/14
06/11 - 06/25
06/14 - 07/15
06/15 - 07/14
06/17 - 06/29
06/17 - 06/29
06/20 - 06/28
06/22 - 07/11
06/23 - 07/08
06/28 - 07/04
07/01 - 07/10
07/01 - 08/03
Sable Island
Norfolk Isalnd
Easter Island
Virgin Islands
Marshall Islands
Cayman Island
St. Maarten
St. Maarten
St. Kitts & Nevis
St. Barthelemy
St. Barthelemy
By VA1AXC, from Sable Is.; HF, mainly 20m
By NL8F, from OC-005, HF; SSB, RTTY, 400w, vetical
By K5WE, from Easter Is.; HF
By K6TOP; 40-10m CW, spare time operation
By FM5BH, QRX for CQWW WPX CW contest
By W2GD, QRX for CQWW WPX CW contest
By CX3AN, 40-6m, CW, SSB, from Majuro Atoll
By 2M0JMN, from NA-016; HF; Holiday style operation
By K9EL, from NA-105; 80-6m, including 60m; CW, SSB, RTTY; 500w
By CX3AN, from OC-011; 40-6m, CW and SSB; Holiday style operation
By CX3AN, from OC-009 (Koror Is);  40-6m; CW and SSB; Holiday style
By W5LAC, from St. Maarten; HF
By W5JON, HF; 160-6m, including 60m, SSB, verticals
By M0RCX, 40-6m; SSB, RTTY, JT65, PSK31; 100w
By W9DR, 6m, CW, SSB
By W9AEB, 40-10m, CW, SSB
By DK1HW, from AS-013; HF, CW, SSB, PSK-31; 100w, verticals in sea
By WB4WXE, 6m (when open) 40-10m; 600w, 5-ele yagi on 6m
By VE3IKV, from NA-113; 6m, possibly some HF, CW, SSB, 8-ele yagi
By IT9BTI, and others, 40-10m, CW, SSB, RTTY, PSK; Spiderbeam
By UAE team, from AF-024; 160-10m; SSB, CW, PSK
By EA5RM, HF; 100w; vertical; solar power

QSL Corner

The QSLs below feature QSL cards from a pair of this winter's most popular DXPeditions to Palmyra Atoll and Guinea, as well as a QSL from shortwave broadcaster, Radio Habana Cuba, for a report sent in late March.

If you received an interesting QSL lately that you'd like to show off, please send a digital image to [email protected], and we'll highlight it in an upcoming issue!

K5P - for multiple QSOs with K1GJY:
18 MHz SSB on 16 January 2016, at 1840 UTC. 21 MHz SSB on 17 January 2016, at 1936 UTC. 14 MHz SSB also on 17 January, at 2141 UTC.
7 MHz on 19 January 2016 at 1514 UTC.
28 MHz on 23 January 2016 at 2111 UTC.
24 MHz on 23 January 2016 at 2117 UTC.

3XY1T - for multiple QSOs with K1GJY:
24 MHz SSB on 18 February 2016, at 1433 UTC.
18 MHz SSB on 18 February 2016, at 2057 UTC.
28 MHz SSB on 19 February 2016, at 1425 UTC.
14 MHz SSB on 19 February 2016, at 2053 UTC.
7 MHz SSB on 20 February 2016, at 0602 UTC.
21 MHz SSB on 20 February 2016, at 1637 UTC.
3.5 MHz SSB on 21 February 2016, at 0244 UTC.

Radio Habana Cuba - for a report by Tim Watson, of a 6 MHz broadcast of "DXers Unlimited," with host Arnie Corro CO2KK, on 26 March 2016, at 0100 UTC.

For Sale
FOR SALE - Drake TR4C transceiver, completely restored and in like-new condition. Features include VFO, lighted dial, and 300 watts output. $500 or best offer. Call Thom, W1WMG, at (207) 839-0402 for more info.

If 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.

Hermon Hamfest - June 04, 2016. Location: Hermon, ME. Type: ARRL Hamfest. Sponsor: Pine State Amateur Radio Club For more info, visit:
The Flea at MIT - June 19, 2016. Location: Cambridge, MA. Type: Flea Market. Sponsors: Harvard Wireless Club, MIT UHF Repeater Asso. For more info, click here.

Three Rivers Hamfest -
August 6, 2016. Location: Brownville / Milo Kiwania Facility. Type: ARRL Hamfest. Sponsor: Piscataquis Amateur Radio Club. For more info, visit:

NoBARC Hamfest
- August 28, 2016. Location: Adams, MA. Type: ARRL Hamfest. Sponsored by: Northern Berkshire Amateur Radio Club. For more info, visit:
items for trade
If you 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. 
If 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.

If 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.
All 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.

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