Former QST technical editor Joel Hallas to speak at FARA

On April 2, 2014 the Greater Fairfield Amateur Radio Association will meet at the Fairfield Fire Training Center located at One Rod Highway, Fairfield Ct.

Our speaker will be Joel Hallas, W1ZR. Many of us know Joel as the recently retired Technical Editor of QST and author of the monthly QST column “The Doctor is In”. Joel has written more than 150 articles for QST and authored a half dozen books on technical topics of interest to amateurs. His most recent book is “Understanding Your Antenna Analyzer”. His presentation will describe antenna analyzers, what they do and how to use them. There will be time for Q&A and a follow up Q&A will take place prior to our May meeting to discuss suggested hands on tests. The meeting will be April 2, 2014 at 8:00 PM. in the Annex Building at the Fire Training Center. Please join us for an interesting evening and opportunity to meet other Fairfield Hams.


See for additional information about club activities

Checking out the repeater antenna

N1LLL and W1FSM using a spectrum analyzer to check out the DSTAR antenna at the repeater site. There is lots of behind the scenes work that keeps your repeaters up and running! Thanks guys!


A message from our president

Hello fellow hams!
Way back in the Stone Age (or maybe it was the summer of 2011) I started to attend GNARC meetings, and immediately felt welcomed and included. Actually, I was so included in all of the goings on that for 2012 I was elected secretary of the club. After a year of doing that, 2013 saw me becoming vice president, which was quite a surprise to me. Now, in 2014, it is a great honor to be able to address all of you as the president of this fine club.

Thanks to lots of hard work and dedication, Tim Walker (W1GIG) secured us a meeting spot in the new Norwalk Fire Headquarters Emergency Operations Center. The work isn’t stopping there. Continuing efforts are being made by our new vice president/repeater trustee, Charles Lelievre (N1LLL), to secure antenna space for the club at this location. He’s also been working with the repeater committee to refurbish and upgrade all of the club repeaters. If you’ve used them lately, you know just how well they are working now. It is no surprise that our repeater system is the busiest in the area.

Now that we have a great location and a great repeater system, we need to focus on increasing our already fantastic membership. I know there are a lot of licensed hams who we haven’t heard from in a while. Why not give them a call and see how they are? When you see someone who isn’t a ham expressing interest in homebrewing, electronics, the magic of radio, or anything else we get into as hams, make sure you mention that ham radio is alive and flourishing, and get them to the next meeting. If you happen to see a new face at the meeting, make sure to say hi. You never know if your quick greeting will end up bringing in a future board member.

It is that time of year again where we must ask you to pay your dues. We ask that this be done before March 31, after which we’ll be recompiling the official membership list. If we notice that your name didn’t make it over to the new list, one of the board members will be contacting you to check in and see how you are doing. I know that for me events like the yearly picnic, field day, and the holiday party are extremely joyous occasions. However, there should be more to the club than just meetings and parties. Our bylaws heavily emphasize the need to provide learning opportunities. As such, we will organize educational workshops, group builds of simple projects, maybe even the go-box building or a fox hunt that has been talked about for a while.

To be able to do these things, GNARC needs operating funds. For the cost of a Baofeng, you will be getting a full year of ham radio fulfillment. And don’t forget all the raffles! It is your past contributions that have made GNARC a thriving club, and we thank you in advance for your continued support!

I’m really looking forward to all that will be happening in 2014, and I hope to see everyone at meetings and events.
Sam Dick, NV1P

February 2014 Meeting Minutes

GNARC meeting minutes February 2014
-Meeting called to order by President Sam NV1P at 8:00pm

-Sam made a motion that January’s minutes be accepted. Dee N1ZD had a correction – his call is wrong in the January minutes. Sec’y said the correction will be made. Jim KC1FB motioned, Paul WB2JVB seconded.

-Todd K1TMS Smith was welcomed to the room (Todd is also Norwalk FD’s deputy chief in charge of training.

-New HAMS/Visitors:

  •  Brian KC1BAT Mc Dermott
  • Eric KB1ZIR Light
  • Chuck K1CWT Teichert III
  • Douglas WA1SFH Sharafanowich
  • Sarah Hansen (Chris WO1T’s daughter, as yet unlicensed!!!!)

-No upgrades

-Treasurer’s report: GNARC is doing very well (actual figures on file with treasurer)

-Committees: PIO: Announcement made about the second annual invite from the American Legion, to set up a special event station on the Legion’s grounds, to commemorate “Weekend At The Post – a thank you to all our troops, & veterans, & their families”.

-No old business

-New Business: Tom Alessi K1TA proposed creating a Paypal account to help facilitate payments from club members for dues, etc. There was some discussion.

-Sam entertained discussion about making FD more of a family type event, including a real picnic (including better managed food, friendly but competitive contesting, etc).

-Sam also broached the subject of investigating other venue’s for GNARC’s holiday party. A mention was made that establishments book early.

-Sam suggested possibly creating an “ask the doctor” technical net. There was some discussion.

-Sam suggested the possibility of an NTS traffic net. Douglas described NTS for those not understanding this system. Douglas & Sam jointly mentioned the possibility of a (training) class to try it in the future.

-Toy gave an overview of ARES, & said members are always welcome.

-There was discussion about other various ways to publicize GNARC & HAM radio in general, i.e.: pamphlets, maker fairs, posting flyers in hobby shops, commercial radio broadcasts with public service announcements, contacting schools, retirement facilities, etc.

-A suggestion was made about possibly – when Spring comes – commandeering a picnic table at the beach some weekend day & setting up a small station………to attract attention…… Marty said he would try calling the Parks & Rec director for permission.

-Sam additionally said he’d like to see GNARC (HAMs in general) do more for/with the public than just public service events. He has volunteered at soup kitchens, & participated in walks/bike races (as a participant instead of a radio operator), to “give back to the community” more.

-A Charity car road rally is approaching – on April 12th. This rally starts in Westport, & ends in Woodbury(?) CT, by way of parts of NY, is an all-day event, & is in need of about 6 teams of 2 each, one being a HAM.

– Tim W1GIG is recuperating in Meadow Ridge (Redding) from a procedure. He has an HT & has been heard on the air. He may be contacted at 203-544-7733 ext: 579.

-Douglas gave a very informative presentation on Packet radio (THANKS DOUG!!)

-Motion to adjourn by Dee N1ZD, seconded by Toy at 9:55pm.

CERT/ARES 2 Meter Net – Tuesdays

Tuesday evenings, at 8pm eastern, there is a CERT/ARES net on the 2 meter (146.475) repeater. The net discusses emergency preparedness topics and other issues relevant to CERT or ARES. All hams are welcome, no need to be a CERT or ARES member! We typically have 10 to 15 checkins from all over Fairfield County. Come join us.

This net is temporarily suspended! Notices will be sent to email reflectors when it starts back up.

January 2014 Meeting Minutes

(First meeting of 2014 being held in new “clubhouse” aka Norwalk’s brand new FDHQ)

  • – Meeting called to order by President Jay NE2Q at 8:05pm. There were 24 attendee’s.
  • – Jay said a few words about his presidency during 2013, plus when he was president quite a few years ago.
  • – Tim W1GIG said we’ll now be meeting here at FDHQ, in the EOC, which has been funded from various sources. Tim went on to describe some of the room’s features. He also announced that long-time GNARC member Ron, formerly known as WA1PMS, is ill, & residing permanently in the nursing facility in Westport, formerly known as Mediplex. Ron’s equipment is for sale, anyone interested should contact Tim.
  • – Tim announced the nominee’s for 2014’s election:
    • Sam Dick NV1P for President
    • Charles Lelievre N1LLL for VP
    • Marty Diamond KA1WBN for Secretary/PIO
    • Jim Francoeur KC1FB for Treasurer

There being no further nominations from the floor, Vlad Spitzer W1ZP moved that nominations be closed (so moved). Tim “moved” to have one vote cast for entire slate as it stands (seconded by Vlad). Vote carried unanimously.

  • – Sam NV1P took over as President.
  • – Dan N1ZZ motioned to give Jay NE2Q a round of applause for being president in 2013 (seconded by Don KA1TZR………. Round of applause……….
  • – Secretary’s Report: Marty KA1WBN stated November’s minutes are on the website. Motion to accept November’s minutes  was moved and seconded and accepted by all
  • – Treasurer’s Report: Jim reported that the club’s finances were good, checking and savings balances were announced.
  • – Dee N1ZD motioned that the Treasurer’s report be accepted, Toy K1WYQ seconded and accepted without corrections or omissions.
  • – Someone asked about the current dues………they’re on GNARC’s website, & included on the membership application.
  • – Committee Reports: PIO – Marty said December’s minutes are in the form of a press release, that has been sent to the press & ARRL for publication, plus GNARC’s website.
  • – Repeater: Charles/N1LLL was accepted as the designated repeater trustee. Steve/NA1SV the outgoing trustee gave up the position because of work related issues.
  • – Charles has already been working with the repeaters and said adjustments have been made to the repeater, including but not limited to; performance “tweaking”, addition of news/weather broadcasts, & cross-linking.
  • – Toy/K1WYQ received compliments for coordinating the holiday party
  • – Sam said he wants to appoint a committee to search for a “fresh” location for GNARC’s holiday party.
  • – Jay suggested the President write a letter to Stop & Shop, thanking them for allowing GNARC to use their conference room for monthly meetings during 2013. Marty said he’d write the letter & present it to Sam for his signature.
  • – Vlad said he thinks there should be more board meetings. He was only aware of one during all of 2013. He believes the constitution calls for multiple (board) meetings throughout the year.
  • – Sam also said he wants to have a new committee formed to recruit new HAMS.
  • – Marty made the suggestion of having those GNARC members who are willing, contribute the info of their skills/trades for publication on GNARC’s website, for the explicit use of other club members only, in the event a (club) member wanted to hire them for something in or around their own house. Sam motioned that this suggestion be tabled for further consideration.
  • – Vlad suggested a “mission statement” be created/modified, & included with welcoming new member orientation.
  • – Tim suggested updating the OEM application to include whether or not members can tow, etc.
  • – New and/or visiting members: Chris Hansen WO1T

Joe Collin KC1AUH

Mark K1QPS

David Heiden N1TJG

Tom Alessi K4TNK

  • – Toy reminded everyone that he is the District Emergency Coordinator (DEC) for ARES in Region 1 and would like to start an ARES net again, alongside one of the nets that is currently conducted.  Paul WB2JVB described CERT for some members who expressed interest, inquiring as to what it’s all about.
  • – Sam announced that Don/KA1TZR will give a presentation on Hallicrafter’s equipment at the next meeting in February.
  • – Don briefly spoke about his association with Hallicraft equipment
  • – Jon WB2RYV announced that SARA’s meeting will be tomorrow night, at Stamford’s Government Center at 8:00pm.
  • – Sam announced several upcoming nets: Tuesday nights – CERT – 8:00pm

Tuesday nights – D-Star – 8:00pm

Wednesday nights – Ragchew – 8:00pm

Thursday nights – 10-Meter (28.400) – 8:00pm

Thursday (morning) – 7 MHz (7178) – 8:00am

     Sam mentioned there’s also a 40-Meter net every morning at 8:00am, except Sunday’s.

Charles said the HAM news line will come on after Wednesday night’s net. Melissa N1VSZ asked what “D-Star” stood for. Digital Smart Technology for Amateur Radio.

  • – Paul WB2JVB made a motion to adjourn the meeting, seconded by Jim KC1FB. Meeting adjourned at 9:40pm


Respectfully Submitted,

Martin KA1WBN Diamond



December Press Release


GNARC-holiday-party-2013-with-Jay,-rep-Gail,-&-meIn lieu of their regular monthly December meeting, the Greater Norwalk Amateur Radio Club celebrated the holidays early, by holding their annual holiday party at the Laurel Athletic Club.

While Toy Alladin K1WYQ, Martin Diamond KA1WBN, & Sam Dick NV1P all helped to plan, members from GNARC hosted the party, & invited members from neighboring clubs, including the Fairfield Amateur Radio Association, the Stamford Amateur Radio Association, & the Candlewood Amateur Radio Association. In total, 54 people enjoyed delicious food, & a joint GNARC/SARA celebratory cake for desert.

Though the party was hosted & attended by HAMS, a few celebrities were there, one or more of which were non-HAMS (who are always welcome!!!)

Section manager Betsey Doane K1EIC was present, as well as State of CT Rep Gail Lavielle of the 143rd district (still unlicensed, but we can fix that !!). Ms Lavielle is an avid supporter of amateur radio, having gotten her first “taste” of the hobby, at “Field Day” at Vet’s Park in Norwalk this past June. Both Betsey & Gail gave short inspirational messages to those in attendance.

Awards & honorable mentions were made for those who had gone “above & beyond the call” (no pun intended!), or served the club honorably in the past, including Joe Hallas W1ZR, recognized as the former Technical Editor of QST, Rich Roznoy K1OF recognized as the former repeater trustee for many years, Paul Danzer N1II for being a newly appointed ARRL Technical Advisor, & Steven Simons W1SMS as the newly appointed ARRL Technical Coordinator. 2 Onyx crystals were awarded, 1 each to Tim Walker W1GIG & Toy Alladin K1WYQ for all their years of dedication to GNARC & HAM radio. Various other members won a variety of raffle prizes. Music for the event was provided by Diamond Entertainment Co of Norwalk. In other announcements, the nominations committee presented their proposed slate of officers for 2014: Sam Dick NV1P as President, Charles Lelievre N1LLL as VP, Martin Diamond KA1WBN as Sec’y, & Jim Francoeur KC1FB as Treasurer. Martin Diamond KA1WBN will also retain his position as Public Information Officer for GNARC, & will join the ranks of other PIO’s, under the guidance of Dana Borgman KA1WPM of the ARRL.


New, & returning members, as well as guests, are always welcome!!!  The new year brings a change in venue. Starting with the (2nd) Wednesday, January 8th meeting, GNARC will be meeting at the new Norwalk Fire Headquarters building, on the same site as the old headquarters: 121 Connecticut Ave. The building is between Fairfield Ave & Cedar St. All who are coming should park on the Cedar St side ONLY, & enter through that door. Meeting time will remain the same (8:00pm). Those interested should listen on GNARC’s 2-meter repeater frequency (146.475) for the location of pizza beforehand (about 6:00pm). The (fire) station can be easily seen off I-95 by exit 14 (in either direction).

For additional information or questions, please call Martin Diamond KA1WBN at 203-554-5109, & check out the club’s website at “”.



Respectfully submitted

Martin KA1WBN Diamond