1ST MEETING OF
Be sure and attend the January meeting on the 13th, at BAMC Menominee, next to KFC. Our last two meetings were not well attended, so please make every effort to attend the first club meeting of the new millinium, weather permitting of course, and show your support.
JANUARY FISH FRY...
Don't forget the next club social gathering, set for Friday January 21 at the Riverfront Best Western in downtown Marinette. We will meet at 5:30pm, and order around 6pm. Contact Lynne, N8OSK, to place reservations. You can also make a reservation on the Sunday net, or to KG8CX, at any time. Remember, reservations are DEFINITELY REQUIRED. Do so by the Sunday prior to the fish fry.
At the January meeting we will review our club's participation in the Y2K New Year's Eve proceedings. About 20 club members checked into the Y2K net. Eric, KG9GH, was on the air from the Marinette County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Jim, KC8DOA was on-site at the Menominee County EOC, and Dan, NT9B was at the Crivitz Y2K location. Lynne, N8OSK was in contact with Delta and Dickinson Counties through the Stephenson repeater. Net Control, Ed, KG8CX also kept in touch with the Brown County regional EOC via the Green Bay repeater. Ed and Jim, K8IR also were in contact with the state offices in Madison and Lansing via 75 meter SSB. It was a great opportunity to show the local public officials our considerable resources if needed during emergency situations. Fortunately, the only messages passed this time were routine reports saying there were no Y2K related problems.
Our recent Christmas party was attended by 40 members,
guests. All had a great time. The 1999 Ham of the Year award was given to Jim Callow, K8IR. He will receive the plaque at the Charter Banquet on February 26, at Schusslers Supper Club. Congratulations Jim. Speaking of Charter night, please see the reservation form included in this issue of the GROUNDWAVE.
AUTOPATCH CODE TO
As is usually done at this time of year, Noel, K8NB,
will change the
code needed to access the patch. We should have it ready for
distribution to the membership at the Jan. meeting
It appears that in order for the repeater to function
well in all sorts of weather, we will need
a new dedicated antenna. That seems to be the weak link, as
everything else has been checked out and found to be in proper working
condition. As all must know by now, whenever winds in excess of about 20
mph are experienced, noise and static
intrudes upon the repeater. It is especially troublesome when less than
full quieting signals are received. Since we must be able to copy a signal that is some distance from the repeater, especially when in a Skywarn or some emergency situation, any noise coming in would detract from a good clean copy and may cause serious problems, both in life and/or property. We will begin discussion on antenna replacement at the January meeting. Noel, K8NB will guide us through the process, and lead to the best possible antenna for our situation. Hopefully, we can have the antenna
on site by the upcoming Skywarn season in April/May.
Because of the recent FCC restructuring decision, we
will probably have
a VE session within the next month or two. We already have interest
from current Tech Plus licensees that they are interested in upgrading
to General. Since they already have the 5wpm code, all that's needed is
the General written exam, and on April 15, 2000 they will be Generals.
Several Advanced hams have also mentioned their desire to upgrade to
Extra before April 15. Stay tuned for times and dates. Contact WC9E if you are definitely interested in an upgrade, and which one.
It also appears as if we will resume ham radio license classes this winter, probably sometime in early February. KG8CX received a call just before the end of the year from a Menominee person, who wants to enter the ham ranks. Others have indicated earlier of their interest. Looks like we may have between 5 and 8 candidates, possibly more, now that restructuring is official. A notice will be placed in the news media and on cable TV, regarding class dates, times, and location.
HAM RADIO IN THE
Public awareness of Ham Radio has been enhanced by several stories recently in the media. Dan, NT9B was featured on the front page of the first Eagle-Herald of the new Millenium for his amateur activities at the Crivitz Y2K center. A prominent picture featured Dan showing off his CW skills. And thanks to Lynne, N8OSK, we had good sized articles in both the Eagle-Herald and Peshtigo Times on the Christmas Party. Club officers report several inquiries from people about ham radio as a result of those articles. And on New Years Day, the NBC Nightly News wrapped up with a nice report on Ham Radio and the Kids Day Contest. It’s been a long time since our hobby has had this much publicity. Hopefully it will introduce some newcomers to our wonderful hobby.
As mentioned above, the FCC announced just before the end of the year the long-awaited license restructuring plan. For those who haven’t seen the details yet, here’s the ARRL bulletin describing the changes:
NEWINGTON, CT, Dec 30, 1999--Amateur Radio will get a
new look in the new millennium. The FCC today issued its long-awaited Report and
Order in the 1998 Biennial Regulatory Review of Part 97--more commonly known as
"license restructuring." The bottom line is that starting April 15,
2000, there will
be three license classes--Technician, General, and Amateur Extra--and a
single Morse code requirement--5 WPM.
"We believe that an individual's ability to demonstrate increased Morse code
proficiency is not necessarily indicative of that individual's ability to
contribute to the advancement of the radio art," the FCC said.
Besides drastically streamlining the Amateur Radio licensing process, the
FCC said its actions would "eliminate unnecessary requirements that may
discourage or limit individuals from becoming trained operators,
technicians, and electronic experts."
Although no new Novice and Advanced licenses will be issued after the
effective date of the Report and Order, the FCC does not plan to
automatically upgrade any existing license privileges. The ARRL had proposed a one-time across-the-board upgrading of current Novice and Tech Plus licensees to General class, but the FCC declined to adopt the idea. This
means that current licensees will retain their current operating privileges,
including access to various modes and subbands, and will be able to renew
their licenses indefinitely.
Starting April 15, 2000, individuals who qualified for the Technician class
license prior to March 21, 1987, will be able to upgrade to General class by
providing documentary proof to a Volunteer Examiner Coordinator, paying an application fee, and completing FCC Form 605.
The FCC's decision not to automatically upgrade Novice and Tech Plus
licensees means the current Novice/Tech Plus HF subbands will remain and not
be "refarmed" to higher class licensees as the ARRL had proposed. The FCC
said it did not refarm these subbands because there was "no consensus"
within the amateur community as to what to do with them.
As it had proposed earlier, the FCC decided to lump Technician and Tech Plus licensees into a single licensee database, all designated as "Technician"
licensees. Those who can document having passed the 5 WPM Morse code
examination will continue to have the current Tech Plus HF privileges. "If
documentation is needed to verify whether a licensee has passed a telegraphy examination, we may request the documentation from that licensee or the VECs," the FCC said.
In addition to reducing the number of license classes from six to three and
eliminating the 20 and 13 WPM code tests, the FCC also will reduce the
number of written examination elements from five to three, authorize
Advanced Class hams to prepare and administer General class examinations,
and eliminate Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) station
licenses. RACES will remain, however. "After review of the record, we
conclude that we should eliminate RACES station licenses because RACES
station licenses are unnecessary for amateur stations and amateur service
licenses to provide emergency communications," the FCC said.
Under the new licensing scheme, there will be four examination elements.
Element 1 will be the 5 WPM Morse code exam. Element 2 will be a 35-question written test to obtain a Technician license; Element 3 will be a 35-question written test to obtain a General license, and Element 4 will be a
50-question written test for the Amateur Extra license. The FCC has left it
in the hands of the National Conference of VECs Question Pool Committee to
determine the specific mix and makeup of written examination questions.
Current Amateur Radio study materials remain valid at least until the new
rules become effective in April.
The FCC's new licensing plan means someone will be able to become a ham by passing a single 35-question written examination. The plan also simplifies
and shortens the upgrade path from the ground floor through Amateur
Extra--especially since amateurs will only have to pass one Morse code test.
Elimination of the 13 and 20 WPM Morse requirements also means an end to physician certification waivers for applicants claiming an inability to pass
the Morse code examination due to physical handicap.
The effective date provides a window of upgrade opportunity for current
Advanced licensees. Between now and April 15, current Advanced holders may
take the existing Element 4B, a 40-question test, giving them credit for
having passed the current Extra written examination. Likewise, holders of a
Certificate of Successful Completion of Examination (CSCE) for Elements 3B
or 4B dated on or after April 17, 1999, will be able to qualify for General
or Amateur Extra respectively when the new rules go into effect on April 15,
A copy of the entire Report and Order (FCC 99-412) is available at
Celebrating birthdays this month are: Joan Callow,
7th; Connie Bosselman, 20th; and Lisa Beardsley, 27th. John
and Rose Mary Edquist will be celebrating their wedding anniversary on the 16th.
Congratulations to all.
Thanks to Peninsula Office Equipment of Menominee for providing the copying of the GROUNDWAVE on a Minolta Digital Copier.
Are Cordially Invited
To a Banquet Honoring the 50th
Anniversary of the Charter of
the M&M Amateur Radio Club
Saturday. February 26, 2000
Place: Schussler's Supper Club, Hwy B just west of Peshtigo, WI
Cocktails at 5:30pm Dinner at 6:30pm
Menu: Family style - Choose from the following items....
* Carmelized Roast Pork Loin (available with German dumplings and
* Seafood Newburg with pasta (Shrimp, Crabmeat, Cod and Lobster)
All dinners include Cheddar/Ranch Mashed potatoes and gravy, Dressing,
hot House Vegetable, Relishes, Rough cut Cole Slaw, Cranberries,
Homebaked Rolls & Butter, and beverage. A light dessert (sundaes or
Gourmet cookies) is also included.
of the meal is $12.00 per person, including tax and tip.
plus other surprises to be unveiled at the dinner.
RSVP form in soon. Deadline is February 19. Send the form along with
number attending and check ($12.00 per person) to M&M ARC, PO Box 1082,
Marinette, WI 54143
ARC CHARTER NIGHT RSVP FORM