Thursday, January 31, 2013

Oklahoma Section News


Hello all you guys and gals,


I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season and a great start to the new year! It’s been VERY busy around the O’Dell household and I haven’t been able to get on the air as much as I would like, but hopefully things will slow down a little soon. I hope all of you got all the nice new packages of rigs, bells and whistles you wanted for Christmas……if you didn’t, well hamfest season is upon us. Speaking of which…… 



2013 Hamfests



These are the hamfests that are already on the calendar for 2013. There are a couple yet to be determined…



2/2 Tri-State Hamfest & Computer Show, Mooreland, OK



3/2 Elk City Hamfest, Elk City, OK



3/11 – 3/12 Green Country Hamfest, Claremore, OK 



6/7 – 6/8 Ham-Com, Plano, TX 



7/26 – 7/27 Ham Holiday, OKC



9/???? Ada Hamfest, Ada, OK????



10/25 – 10/26 Texhoma Hamarama, Ardmore, OK



11/2 Enid Hamfest, Enid, OK 



Legislative Agenda



Eddie Manley, K5EMS, our State Government Liaison has gotten one piece of our proposed legislation filed and has found a couple of others of note to amateurs. When I get the actual bill numbers, I’ll post them here.



The bill we had filed changes the wording on our current PRB-1 legislation to make the municipality,not the ham, prove why they might not be allowed to erect an antenna structure.



Of the other bills of amateur interest, one will now allow you to apply for Oklahoma Amateur Radio license plates at your local tag agent but rather  by mail only. The application cost is apparently $8 if you do it at the tag agent and, if you have a zero in your call, they WILL put the slash mark in it. You will need a copy of your amateur license to give to the tag agent.



There are 2 bills having to do with texting, one from the House and one from the Senate, they are basically the same bill. Amateur radio is specifically excluded from these bills.



Youth



I am proud to let you know that the section now has an Assistant Section Manager for Youth. Conner Keef, WX5CJK, is a meteorology student at OU and will be working with the youth of the section. He is being assisted by Megan McCellan, K5MEM the North Texas ASM for youth. They are planning on having a Youth Lounge at the sections 3 larger hamfests this year starting with Green Country, then Ham Holiday and ending with Texhoma. The youth lounge concept has really started to catch on. This way, any kids that come to these hamfests, licensed or not, will have programming aimed directly at them.



ARRL Centennial



Don’t forget the ARRL Centennial is coming up in 2014. By the beginning of 3rd quarter this year you should start seeing ideas for your club to start the planning process for next year. Be looking especially for the chance to immortalize your QSL card for 2064!!



E-mail Groups



If you aren’t a member of the aresoklahoma or OKtraders Yahoo groups, then you should be. Also check out the section presence on Twitter and Facebook. Then make sure you join the ARRL-OK section e-mail list at http://mailman.qth.net/.



That’s all for now. I hope to see all of you at one time or another this year.



73,



Kevin O’Dell, N0IRW






Saturday, January 26, 2013

Linked Repeater Systems are available around the Section

The Twitter account has mentioned the linked repeater systems in Oklahoma.

There are a number of repeater systems that cover the State.

1.  Caprock Intertie
2.  Kan-Okla Inter-tie Repeater Network  
3.  Southwest Independent Repeater Association 
4.  Lawton Independent Repeater Alliance 
5.  Tulsa Amateur Radio Club
6.  Tri-State Amateur Radio Group

The Lawton-Fort Sill Amateur Radio Club also has a linked system.

This is in addition to the Internet Radio Linking Project repeaters:

3050 KB5KZS Bartlesville OK USA +443.1250 88.5 (Hz) CST -06003198 
WA5QYE Enid OK USA 446.0500 141.3 CST -06003267 
N5JAS Moore OK USA 0.0000 None CST -06003704 
WX5LAW Lawton OK USA +444.0750 123.0 CST -06003761 
W5PAA Oklahoma City OK USA -146.8500 141.3 CST -06003867 
W5DEL Oklahoma City OK USA -145.2500 103.50 CST -06004274 
KF5IRG Between Dallas & Tulsa OK USA 146.4200 88.5 CST -06007566 
KB1HSZ Eufaula OK USA -146.6850 None CST -06007734 
K5GLH Oklahoma City OK USA 445.9500 162.2 CST -06007764 
W5NS Bartlesville OK USA -146.7600 88.5 CST -06008115 
WX5ASA Altus OK USA 147.51 UTC +00008440 
W5DEL Oklahoma City WIN System OK USA +443.3000 162.2 CST -0600

and the Echolink resources:

There are a growing number of D-Star repeaters in the State as well. Check RepeaterBook for updated repeaters in the State.

Do you have a net on your repeater?

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Elk City Hamfest coming soon

March 2, 2013 marks the 24th annual Elk City Hamfest at the Elk City Civic Center.

An Alinco DR-135 is the preregistration prize with door prizes awarded hourly.

In addition to an American Radio Relay League Volunteer Examiner test, those who attend Friday may get free Hamburgers and fries.

Doors open at 8 a.m. Saturday.  Tickets and tables are $5 each.

Below is the flyer provided by Earl, N5NEB who also noted that "Due to a lighting strike, my computer crashed, so have lost some email address for hams that have attended in the past. So PLEASE send this to everyone in your ham friends list. You can send me any address that would like to be add or put back in."

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Look what is happening the GREAT Northwest!



Tri-State Amateur Radio Group

Ham Fest & Computer Show

Saturday, February 2, 2013

8 am to 2 pm

Mooreland, OK

Mooreland Community Center

Admission at the Door: $2.00

The TRI-STATE AMATEUR RADIO GROUP is holding a ham fest and computer show with  plenty of new and used amateur radio and computer equipment for sale. Come out and enjoy the fun and fellowship with other amateur radio operators and computer users.

Lunch will be provided.

If you would like to reserve a table, please email w5okttsarg@gmail.com or call  (580)334-6201.

Come out and enjoy!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

TWITTER SCAM ALERT!

There is a phishing scam on TWITTER that you could receive.
 
If you receive a TEXT/SMS or MMS message or twitter message from @reccrossokc 
Beware if the message has a note asking you to view a blog that is spreading “nasty blogs around about you”… There will be a link attached.
The link looks like your log in to twitter. If you enter your twitter username and password…. the bad guys will them have hacked your twitter account.
 
This is a  phishing scam on TWITTER.  
 
FY!.

Mark Conklin, N7XYO
Oklahoma Section Emergency Coordinator
Amateur Radio Emergency Service

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Look what our Texas friends have planned

COWTOWN HAMFEST 2013
LOCKHEED MARTIN RECREATION AREA 
3400 Bryant Irvin Road
Fort Worth, Texas 76109

Cowtown Hamfest and ARRL North Texas Section Convention, the original Hamfest in the Fort Worth Metroplex occurs in January. The event date, January 18-19, 2013 at Lockheed Martin Recreation Area, 3400 Bryant Irvin Road, Fort Worth, Texas 76109. 

Doors open Friday afternoon the 18th at 3:00 pm and will remain open until 8:00 pm. Saturday morning the 19th it opens at 8:00 am and will close at 3:00 pm. Catered food will be available Friday and Saturday. Morning coffee and breakfast snacks will also be available. Door prizes will be awarded through out the event. The prizes will be announced via the website and here next month. 

The event will feature large vendor areas over 100 tables and outdoor tailgate flea market. Several well known commercial vendors will be present. Vendors should go to the website for table availability and or contact Kevin Vickers. A complete set of educational programs will be conducted through out Saturday and VE Testing will be done both Friday and Saturday. Talk-in is 147.28 tone, 110.9. Volunteers are needed. Volunteer by contacting David Forbes .

The Fest will be available online at WWW.BATC.TV and will be streamed both days. Once at the site pick “member streams”, then select “K5PHD”. You will be linked up and can watch and listen. If you cannot come in person please connect online to watch the events. 

The Hamfest is open to everyone. It will have something for all. Those who are ham radio operators present and past are encouraged to attend. In past years, the response has been overwhelming. The radio club expects no less this year. There is no better time to find friends new and old. The best part of a Hamfest is visiting with your friends and finding out what has been happening to them in their lives. 

Cowtown Hamfest is sponsored by the Lockheed Martin Amateur Radio Club, W5SJZ and LMRA. Website is located at www.cowtownhamfest.org and personal contact can be made with David Forbes, KC5UYR.

Friday, January 4, 2013

D-Star in Tulsa

Gregg Wonderly, W5GGW reports:
 
The  TARC D-Star repeater, on 443.000mhz is up and running with the network connection working good.  We still have some packet loss between the tower and the gateway computer, but I've tried to decrease the packet sizes by an increase in the hopping frequency so that noise or problems on one segment of the 900Mhz band has a smaller impact on the total quality of the audio being transmitted across 900Mhz.

I enjoyed the D-Star web program put on over last weekend of Dec at thehttp://www.w5kub.com/ web site.  It had a lot of great information in it.  There are reruns still available on that web site.  There were a couple of times that audio cut out as they changed speakers or at the start of a session, so just hang tight what that happens in the replays, and you'll get audio back shortly.

I currently have 443.000 connected to reflector REF014C.  Reflectors are internet connected hubs which handle the large bandwidth needed for lots of users being "internet" connected to one or more repeaters.  If you want to connect to a different reflector, you can use the 'unlink' mechanism by sending a 'U' in position 8 of the UR call field.  The list of possible reflectors can be located on the internet by searching for "dstar reflectors".  The http://www.dstarinfo.com/reflectors.aspx web page is at the top of the results. To connect to one of the reflectors, set the UR call to the reflectors name with an additional 'L' character in position 8.

Each of the reflectors listed, has a "Usage" description of it, and location information etc.  You can click through the links there in your web browser, and see which repeaters and users are connected to which reflectors.

There was a lot of information provided on the DV-AP and DV-Dongle devices. These devices are internet connected dongles which allow you to use D-Star as well.

The DV-AP is an "access point" like device which you connect to your computer. It has a low power FM transceiver on board, which you can talk through, with your conventional FM equipment.  That device provides the D-Star CODEC to encode/decode your voice for D-Star.  It then gateways your transmission into the reflector/repeater which you've used your computer to connect to.

The DV-Dongle is also connected through your computer, but requires you to use a headset for your audio in and out.  If you are setting near a computer, and can stay there, then this device can make it possible to get into D-Star with that simple restriction on your movement.

Both of these devices can be found on the internet at the various ham radio equipment stores.

The DRATs application was also reviewed.  DRATs allows you to use your D-Star radios digital data services to send text messages, transfer files and other related data services.  It is a great ARES resource for support activities because you can use your D-Star radio, as you would a TNC, and this application provides all of the "applications" without you having to do the extra work to manage your data transfers manually.

There are lots of D-Star nets being run world wide.  There is a list athttp://www.dstarinfo.com/nets.aspx which you can review to see if there are some interesting topics which you'd like to participate in.  If you have a DV-Dongle, you can sit at your computer and connect to these nets and participate directly.  With the DV-AP, you can also connect via your computer, but be able to use your FM HT, around the house to participate.  If you want to use a D-Star radio, then you can check for any activity on a local repeater, such as the TARC 443.000mhz. If there are no other users who need the repeater for something else, then you can simply link the repeater to the appropriate reflector and participate.

This coming year, I will be taking some time to do some D-Star demonstrations and programs at the TARC club meetings.  If you have an interest in D-Star, feel free to send me an email to w5ggw@cox.net and I can try and provide some answers or pointers to answers.

Editor's Note:  Are you using D-Star?  

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