Category Archives: Breaking News

Ham Radio Class Starting in Norwalk – September 26th

The Greater Norwalk Amateur Radio Club (www.gnarc.org) will be offering an amateur radio licensing class that will get you your entry level technician amateur (“ham”) radio license.  
 
The classes will run for six weeks starting on Thursday September 26.  Class is 6:30 to 9:30 at GNARC’s communications center at 100 Fairfield Avenue in Norwalk (convenient to I-95 and Route 7).  There is no charge for the class, although you will need to buy the Amateur Radio Relay League’s training manual ($25). We suggest that you purchase an entry level radio so you can begin to listen to things right away. They cost about $35 on Amazon. Details to be provided.

At the end of the class, you will be able to take the FCC exam at GNARC and get your license.
 
Getting a ham radio license requires learning some rules and regulations, the basics of how radios and antennas work, and simple electronics. 

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April 2019 Meeting Minutes

Present (23): K1TA, W1PPL, AI1V, W1IP, N1ZD, KB1UOB, N1DPD, K1RF, AA1XV, K4JCS, KC1AUH, W1SMS, K1DSG, K1WYQ, W1GIG, KC1JGY, WA1VXM, ND1L, K6VOR, KC1KSO, W1CAH, KB1FBX, KC1JGY

Meeting opened 7:30 by K1TA

March minutes approved.

Department Reports:

Finance: Checking and savings both good.

Communications: No communications of note.

Board: No board actions this month.

Technical Committee: Everything working properly. The current plan for Echolink is to install it at the Comm Center. Curt would like for someone else to be in charge of the work because he is tied up with other personal and professional work.

Comm center roof is still not complete. Until it is, we cannot re-install the low band HF antenna (30-80 meters). Also, need to get on roof to re-tie the beam’s coax and rotor cables to the mast.

Public Service: The major public service events for spring/summer have now finalized their dates:

  • Fairfield Half Marathon – Sunday June 2
  • Bloomin Metric – Sunday June 9 (was formerly mid May)
  • MS Ride – Sunday June 23 (was formerly early June). Conflicts with Field Day but we expect to be able to staff this.

Education Committee: General class began April 4 to run for 9 weeks on Thursdays from 7 to 9:15pm. Two people attended the first class. We have received communications from three additional people who expect to attend starting April 11 (total of 5).

VE Session: At the April VE session we had five people, with a total of 2 Extra class licenses earned, 1 General class licenses earned, and 2 Technician class licenses earned. One of the Extras was a double – took and passed both the General (Element 3) and the Extra (Element 4).

Special Events: Nothing scheduled in the next month.

Field Day: It was agreed that there is not good chemistry between Stamford and Norwalk for Field Day and we will not be running a joint Field Day. AA1XV noted that in the past few years we have had excellent turnout for setup and take-down, but that only a limited number of people are willing to operate. AA1XV has made it clear that he expects to run a competitive Field Day and wants club members to be prepared to operate in a competitive environment.

The meeting was closed at 7:51 pm.

Thanks to Steve W1SMS who did an Elmer session on (mostly HF) antennas for those who have been recently licensed and those who have specific issues.

February 2019 Meeting Minutes

Greater Norwalk Amateur Radio Club (GNARC) Meeting Minutes 02/13/2019
Present (13): K1TA, K1DSG, N1DPD, KB1UOB, AI1V, K4JCS, ND1L, KC1AUH, N1CT, N1ZD, AA1XV, W1SMS, W1GIG

Meeting opened 7:30 by K1TA Meeting minutes from January 2019 approved.

Department Reports:
Finance:​ Checking and savings both good.
Communications​: No communications of note.
Board​: No board actions this month. The Board did not meet because too many members are in Florida.
Technical Committee:​ Some problem with the N1LLL repeater last week. Was checked out by K4JCS and N1LLL, nothing significant found. May have just been snow/ice on the antenna. Seems to be working properly now. Everything else working properly.

Comm center roof is still not complete. Until it is, we cannot re-install the low band HF antenna (30-80 meters). Also, need to get on roof to re-tie the beam’s coax and rotor cables to the mast.
Public Service:​ Nothing upcoming in the next month.
The major public service events for spring/summer have now finalized their dates: Fairfield Half Marathon – Sunday June 2 Bloomin Metric – Sunday June 9 (was formerly mid May) MS Ride – Sunday June 23 (was formerly early June). Conflicts with Field Day but we expect to be able to staff this.
Education Committee:​ A number of people suggested a General class for the spring since there have been two or three Tech classes in the area recently. Education committee has not finalized but intends to do so this month.
Special Events:​ Nothing scheduled in the next month.
Field Day:​ AA1XV accepted position as Field Day captain. Stamford club has contacted us about doing a joint field day this year because their normal site is not available. K1TA and AA1XV to contact them and see what can be worked out.

The meeting was closed at 8:05 pm.

Jess noted that there is an upswell of D-Star activity in the area.

GNARC Items for sale

Update: All three HF radios have been sold!  Power supply sold!

Hygain CD45II Rotator system – New in Box – with control cable! – $300!

K1RF’s presentation on End Fed Half Wave Antennas

Please see the PDF attachment for the excellent presentation given by Steve, K1RF on end fed half wave antennas.

End Fed Half Wave Antennas

 

2018 Sherwood Island Portable Ops

Today a group of GNARC members operated portable form Sherwood Island State Park in Westport. Attending were Paul WB2JVB, Joe KC1AUH, Jon AI1V, Paul W1PPL, Steve KB1YLQ and Curt W1FSM.

We had two antennas, an end fed multiband and a Buddipole set for 20m. The end fed was used on 40m.

Conditions were surprisingly good! We had no problems making contacts up and down the East coast, the mid West and into Canada on 40. When we switched to 20, we talked to several European stations (Germany was one) and out to Minnesota.  Jon and Paul JVB did the operating.

This was a very fun day, perfect weather and good HF propagation.  We plan to do this again, as Sherwood is now free to get in, and it is an official park, Z1715, so if you get spotted, you get lots of calls.

Here are a few pictures from the day.

2018 Lighthouse Race Summary

This past Saturday, local hams provided communications support for the 2018 Lighthouse to Lighthouse Race. Hams were in two support boats, on Sheffield Island, in the US Coast Guard Auxiliary tower and on the beach. We used the 146.475 repeater, and also coordinated comms on various marine channels. We assist in tracking progress of the race, helping stranded paddlers, and ensuring that all paddlers are accounted for at the end of the race. We were in communications with the USCG and support boats on marine channels as well as using our repeater.

Thanks to Marilyn KB1YYO (boat), Dimitri K1DCG (tower), Jon AI1V (boat), Paul W1PPL (Sheffield Island) for volunteering and doing a great job on the radios.
Thanks also to Greg KC1CRT and Bill WG1HM who were on coast guard duty and relayed info to Dimitri in the tower.

Michael N1PLH and Joe KC1AUH also showed up on race day to help me at race control. I would have had a much tougher day had they not appeared.

N1PLH also brought his drone, and you can see some of the photos attached.If you look at the race control tent, you can see my buddipole tripod setup with a J Pole configuration on top. This was for the marine channels. A small mag mount on a pie plate was used on top of the tent for 2 meters. 

Also a link to his video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YuY4Dd185o

The radio box (Yaesu FT-8800 and SeaRanger marine radio) was powered by one 15ah Bioenno battery.