The Marinette and Menominee Amateur Radio Club
      GROUND WAVE

Repeater Frequencies 147.00 MHZ & 444.075 Mhz
Club Net: Sunday 7PM 147.00 MHz
Simplex DX Spotting and Ragchew Frequency 146.55
Web Page:  http://w8pif.com
                   Officers
                   President: Jim Callow K8IR
                     Vice President: Ed Engleman KG8CX
Treasurer: Lynne Rynish N8OSK
Secretary: Gary Luthardt  KG9AD

The MMARC Newsletter                                             September 2003

NEW MEETING LOCATION…

The September meeting will be held on the 11th at the Spies Public Library on 1st St. in Menominee.  It is located right next to the marina in downtown Menominee.  We will be using their nice conference room on the lower level, just behind the main desk.  Thanks to Val KC8WAI, for securing this location.  We will be using it throughout the winter months, and hopefully longer.  We must be out by 9pm when the library closes, but that should not present a problem.  For those that would like a longer time for QRM, we can always adjourn to a local restaurant for coffee.

Agenda items will include the annual election of officers. We hope you can attend this important meeting. 

 

SLATE OF OFFICERS TO BE PRESENTED AT SEPTEMBER MEETING…

The following slate will be presented to the membership in September. 

    President:  Dave Cunningham, NS9R
   
Vice President:  Dwight Bosselman, W9YQ

    
Secretary:  Jim Callow, K8IR

    
Treasurer:  Tom Rynish, N8LHB

Nominations will also be accepted from the floor prior to the vote. 

We would like to see a "full house" for the September meeting. 

 

ANOTHER GREAT AUGUST PICNIC…

The annual summer picnic was held on August 17th at Henes Park.  There were approximately 35 in attendance, with several driving over from Door County ... KA9HFA, W9MFS, and KA9ARZ. 

 

  

AA9IB and AA9JH enjoying the picnic.

 Thanks to Lynne, N8OSK for the organization and her crew of Jim and Joan Callow, and Paul and Maxine Drees. 

 

N8LHB at the coals

In addition Tom, N8LHB prepared the chicken and with a little help from WC9E and K8IR, grilled it over hot coals much to the gastronomical delight of everyone.

Everything was delicious and all had a great time under sunny skies and warm temperatures.

 

 

WAUSAUKEE REPEATER SIGNAL MUCH IMPROVED…

The WA8WG repeater is now operating with a commercial 4 bay antenna at 100 feet.  As a result, signals throughout Marinette, Menominee and adjacent counties are now markedly better.  The antenna went up on August 28th culminating many months of effort by Bill, WA8WG. 

The next step is to make a frequency move to 146.880 very soon...within several weeks.   In fact, crystals have already been ordered, and the move approved by WAR (Wisconsin Assn. of Repeaters).   The repeater will have both PL encode and decode soon.  Bill is planning to change the PL to the 107.2 standard for this area.  But until then, the current PL of 136.5 will be used.

Also being planned for the very near future is a receive site in Marinette, which will make the repeater accessible to everyone with a hand-held within the tri city area.   Mobile coverage is already very good throughout the twin cities, ranging from a few poor locations to full scale readings.   That will be vastly improved once the remote site becomes active.

Feel free to use the repeater as Bill would appreciate reports from various areas within northeast Wisconsin and the southern UP.

The final step is to complete the link between the Wausaukee and Abrams repeaters.  The Wausaukee site is finished with both the 2 meter and 440 link antennas up.  All that's needed now is the 440 link antenna on the 146.835 tower site.

Many months of planning, construction, and encounters with Murphy are finally coming to fruition.  But more is yet to come to make the Abrams/Wausaukee link system second to none for all ham communication needs and services within NE Wisconsin and Upper Michigan.

 

BPL AND CW IN THE NEWS…

By K8IR with excerpts from the ARRL Website and ARRL Letter

There are currently two issues that are the subject of a lot of comment on the Internet reflectors these days.

The first is Broadband over Power Line, or BPL, which was the subject of an article in last month’s Ground Wave.

The FCC on August 20th closed the reply comment period on Docket 03-104 which seeks input on whether Part 15 rules should be changed to accommodate BPL, which is a system for transmitting data over powerlines using the 2-80 MHz spectrum.  Proponents say BPL is another way to provide broadband internet access to millions of Americans. Even under current Part 15 standards, there exists the potential for strong interference to Amateur and other HF communications, as shown by Field tests conducted by the ARRL in BPL test areas.  The eye-opening video is available on the web at :

http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2003/08/08/2/?nc=1

If you don’t have Internet access, you’ll be able to see it at the September club meeting.

Over 4500 comments have been filed in this FCC proceeding, many coming from individual amateurs.  The FCC will now digest the comments it has received and will decide what, if any changes to Part 15, are warranted.

In the meantime, the ARRL is continuing to raise money to fund the BPL fight. Up to this point, many hams have donated thousands of dollars to a special BPL Defense Campaign.  Now ARRL has asked some 2100 ARRL-affiliated clubs to consider donating to the campaign. They still need to raise an additional $55,000 to fund the field measurements and document filings necessary to defeat this threat. To help, visit ARRL's secure BPL campaign donation site or mail your contribution to BPL Special Spectrum Defense Campaign, ARRL, 225 Main St, Newington CT 06111.

 

The other hot issue that is even more emotional to amateurs is whether the FCC should drop the CW requirement for HF operating privileges.  Many feel the time has come to eliminate the code test, which they feel blocks many otherwise qualified people from entering our hobby.   CW enthusiasts fear eliminating the code test will lead to the elimination of the CW subbands, and the death of CW.

From the ARRL Letter, 8/29/03:

The FCC has invited public comments on six separate Morse code-related petitions for rule making, some of which would altogether eliminate Element 1, the 5 WPM Morse test, from the Amateur Service rules (Part 97).
World Radiocommunication Conference 2003 (WRC-03) made optional the requirement to prove the ability to send and receive Morse signals to operate below 30 MHz.

A petition from Peter M. Beauregard, KI1I, designated RM-10781, would give all Technician licensees current Novice/Tech Plus CW privileges on 80, 40, 15 and 10 meters and limited phone and image privileges on 80, 40 and 10
meters. Beauregard said the CW privileges would "encourage Technician class licensees to upgrade to General" by giving them a "practice area." He has proposed new Tech phone/image privileges on 3850-3900 kHz and
7225-7300 kHz. His petition would not eliminate Element 1, however.

Pete V. Coppola, KG4QDZ, and family--Tina Coppola, KG4YUM, and Pete A. Coppola, KG4QDY--have asked the FCC to eliminate Element 1 from the rules. The Coppolas' petition, designated RM-10782, would grant Tech Plus HF privileges to current Technician licensees. It also would retain the current CW-only subbands.


Kiernan K. Holliday, WA6BJH, has asked the FCC simply to "remove all requirements for knowledge of Morse code" from the Amateur Service rules. Holliday said there is less reason to require Morse code in the Amateur
Service today. In his petition, designated RM-10783, Holliday also said the code requirement limits the ability of handicapped individuals to get ham tickets.

Dale Reich, K8AD, petitioned the FCC to delete Element 1 for General class applicants but keep it in place for Extra class applicants. Under Reich's scheme, "no-code" Techs wanting HF privileges would have to upgrade to
General first. Reich's petition is designated RM-10784

Eric Ward, N0HHS, seeks immediate elimination of "proficiency in telegraphy using Morse code." The "immediate removal of the telegraphy requirement from Amateur Radio licensing is appropriate and clearly in the public interest," Ward contended in his petition, designated RM-10785.


In a detailed, nine-page petition, the National Conference of Volunteer Examiner Coordinators (NCVEC) is calling on the FCC to delete Element 1 and give "Tech Plus" privileges to current Technician licensees. The NCVEC also asked the FCC to "take expedited action" to allow volunteer examiner coordinators (VECs) to discontinue administering Element 1 "as soon as possible."

The organization, the umbrella group for the 14 VECs in the US, said there's "no longer any reasonable justification for requiring an applicant to demonstrate this antiquated skill," and that most applicants never use Morse after they pass the test. The NCVEC petition is designated RM-10787.

The ARRL-VEC abstained from voting on the NCVEC's petition question when it came up during the NCVEC's July 25 meeting in Pennsylvania. At its own July meeting in Connecticut, the ARRL Board of Directors affirmed its
interest in reviewing members' input on the Morse issue as well as on other possible revisions to Part 97 arising from WRC-03. The Board's current position is to retain the Morse requirement for HF access.

Two more recently filed petitions--one from No Code International and another from two amateur licensees--are expected to be put on public notice in the near future.

Interested parties may file comments on any or all of these petitions using the FCC's Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS) http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/ecfs/ , which also permits users to view the petitions and all comments on file. There is a 30-day comment window.

To file a comment, click on "Submit a Filing" under "ECFS Main Links." In the "Proceeding" field, type the full RM number, including the hyphen, and complete the required fields. "RM" must be in capital letters, and you
must include the hyphen between "RM" and the five-digit number. You may type your remarks into a form or attach a file. ECFS also accepts comments in active proceedings via e-mail, per instructions on the ECFS page.

While a Morse code exam element remains on the books in the US, Canada and elsewhere, a handful of countries--including Switzerland, Belgium, the UK, Germany, Norway and the Netherlands--already have moved to drop their Morse requirements. Austria and New Zealand are expected to do so


 

MINUTES OF THE M&M AMATEUR RADIO CLUB MEETING AUGUST 17, 2003

 

The Meeting of the M&M Amateur Radio Club was called to order by President Jim Callow, K8IR during the club’s annual picnic held at Henes Park in Menominee.

Dave. NS9R reported for the Nominating Committee. They are proposing the following slate of officers:

   President:  Dave Cunningham, NS9R
  
Vice President:  Dwight Bossellman, W9YQ

   
Secretary:  Jim Callow, K8IR

   
Treasurer:  Tom Rynish, N8LHB

Nominations will also be taken from the floor before the election at the September meeting.

K8IR thanked the nominating committee of NS9R and W9YQ for their work.

 

Lynne, N8OSK reported that Val, KC8WAI, has secured the meeting room at Spies Public Library for our monthly meetings through the winter months.

 

Lynne, N8OSK suggested the club schedule the annual picnic in place of the July meeting.  She noted the difficulty in getting a quorum for the July meeting, and the many conflicting events in the busy month of August.

 

Submitted by

Jim Callow, K8IR
President