President’s Report by hih90090



                             The Starved Rock Radio Club
                                     October 2002
                         President: Mark Gebhardt – K9ZQ
                      Vice President: Jesse L. Risley – KB9TMA
                         Secretary: Frank Cararro – KF9NZ
                       Treasurer: Francis Kmetz – WB9VLW
The Starved Rock Radio Club (SRRC) meets on the first Monday of every month, unless otherwise scheduled, at
7:00 p.m. at the SRRC clubhouse in Leonore, Illinois. Club nets are held on the SRRC repeater (W9MKS) every
Wednesday evening at 7:00 p.m. The W9MKS repeater is located at the SRRC clubhouse in Leonore, Illinois, and
it operates on a frequency of 147.120 MHz (+ 103.5 PL). The Starved Rock Radio Club was organized in
September of 1934, and has remained an ARRL affiliated club since 1934.

The mission of the Starved Rock Radio Club has continually been to give faithful, co-operative service and
assistance for the betterment of amateur radio, in the promotion of interest in amateur radio communications, for
the advancement of the radio art, for the use of amateur radio for public service and welfare, and for the
maintenance of fraternalism and the promotion of good fellowship along with a high standard of conduct. Visit
us on the web at

                               October Meeting Highlights
          We had 19 members and 5 guests present at the October meeting. There was a
brief Treasurer’s report, and no Secretary’s report was given due to Frank’s absence. The
door prize winners were as follows: KB9ZWJ, KC9CIQ, and WB9VLW.

          The SRCA Pumpkin Pie Ride was discussed, and it was noted that participation
in this exercise demonstrated both the strengths and weaknesses within the following
areas: APRS / packet, coordination of events via amateur radio (net control), teamwork
and cooperation, and digital communications in public service activities. Overall, there
was a decent turnout of SRRC members willing and able to lend a hand with this event.

          It was noted that the refrigerator at the clubhouse went kaput a few weeks ago.
We are now in need of both a replacement fridge, and a storm door to lower heating
costs. If anyone is aware of such items that may be for sale at a decent price, they are
asked to inform Mark, K9ZQ ASAP.

Members were again reminded that Dec 7th is the date for the NWS Skywarn
Appreciation Day at Romeoville. SRRC members are encouraged to attend, and several
members may be car-pooling up to Romeoville for this special event.

KB9TMA for KF9NZ (absent)

               Training Report – Upcoming VE Sessions

Tentative Schedule:
VE Session
SRRC Leonore
Saturday November 30, 2002 - this is the Saturday after Thanksgiving. 3 to 6 PM.

Why the change of date? I forgot about:
2002 SKYWARN Recognition Day
December 7, 2002 0000 UTC - 2400 UTC

The National Weather Service and the American Radio Relay League developed
SKYWARN Recognition Day in 1999. It celebrates the contributions that volunteer
SKYWARN radio operators make to the National Weather Service. During the day
SKYWARN operators visit NWS offices and contact other radio operators across the

Please register my calling Joe at 433-2347 or
I am looking for 4 volunteer examiners to assist with this session.

VE Examination Database last updated on Fri 04-Oct-2002
3 found within approximately 50 miles of 61350

Time: 07:30PM (Walk-ins allowed)
AURORA, IL 60506

Time: 12 NOON (Walk-ins allowed)
Location: FIRE STATION #4

Joe Tokarz, KB9EZZ
SRRC Training Chairman

                         Club Member Appointed as SEC
         Below is a press release from earlier this week, from our ARRL Section
Manager Sharon Harlan, N9SH. Club member Pat Ryan, KC6VVT, was recently
appointed as the Section EC. Let’s offer our congratulations to pat on a job well done,
and wish him luck in pursuing the duties of his new position.

           On the 15th of October there was a change in the Section Cabinet here in
Illinois. I have appointed Pat Ryan, KC6VVT, of Tonica Illinois as the new Section
Emergency Coordinator. I am sure that Pat will do a great job here in Illinois.


Sharon Harlan, N9SH
Section Manager-Illinois

            Activities Report / Calendar of Upcoming Events
 2002 ARRL International EME Competition will be held on the weekends of
October 26-27, 2002 and November 23-24, 2002. Object: Two-way communications
via the earth-moon-earth path on any authorized amateur frequency above 50 MHz.
Date and Contest Period: Two full weekend 48-hour periods (0000 UTC on Saturday
through 2359 UTC Sunday). For a complete list of rules, visit
 The Streator Amateur Radio Club will be hosting their monthly
dinner/meeting on Saturday, November 2nd 2002 at Chippers’ Grill, route 23
North in Streator. The dinner/meeting begins at 5:30 p.m., and everyone is
welcome!! This dinner/meeting will focus on reorganization and resurrection of the
club, so everyone is encouraged to try and attend!! If you would like to attend the
monthly dinner/meeting, please make reservations no later than Friday, October 4th by
contacting Jesse Risley, KB9TMA on the air, or by phone at 815-673-1023 (home) or
815-674-1059 (cell).
 2002 ARRL November Sweepstakes Rules Object: For stations in the United States
and Canada (including territories and possessions) to exchange QSO information with
as many other US and Canadian stations as possible on 160, 80, 40, 20, 15 and 10
meter bands. Date and Contest Period: CW: First full weekend in November
(November 2-4, 2002). Phone: Third full weekend in November (November 16-
18, 2002).
 Special Event Station – Shiloh, IL: Scott Air Force Base Amateur Radio Society,
AA9ZI. 1500Z-2100Z Nov 2. Scott AFB Radio Club's 1st Anniversary. 146.405 28.410
14.285 7.250. Certificate. Suzanne Horn, KB0OMB, 988 Jacks Rd, Troy, MO 63379.

 The Davenport    RAC will host their annual hamfest at Davenport, IA on Sunday,
November 3 . For more information, contact Dave Mayfield, W9WRL at 1821 7th
Street in Moline, IL 61265 Phone: 309-762-6010 or 309-781-9308 Email:
hamfest@gwltd.com2002. You may also visit .
 The next regular meeting of the Starved Rock Radio Club will be held on
Monday, November 4th 2002 at 7:00 p.m. at the SRRC clubhouse in Leonore,
Illinois. Everyone is welcome and encourage to attend the meeting. There is a ―pre-
meeting‖ over dinner, held prior to the regular meeting, beginning at 5:00 p.m. at
Schmitty’s Grill. Come on over for some casual chat, and enjoy the evening steak dinner
 The Illinois Valley Radio Association (IVRA) will host their next monthly meeting
on Tuesday, November 5th 2002 at 7:00 p.m. at the Hennepin Town Hall in
Hennepin, Illinois. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend the meeting!
 The Chicago Amateur Radio Club Inc. will host their annual Ham Radio
Auction on Sunday, November 10th. The auction will be held at Devry University,
3300 N. Campbell in Chicago, IL. For more information, call Melissa at 773-908-
0518 or write the CARC Inc. at P.O. Box 410535 – Chicago, IL 60641-0535.

73’s DE
Jesse L. Risley, KB9TMA (Activities Chairman)

  Around the Hobby – Stray Items Relating to Amateur Radio

                                    Items for Sale

   1) Gas generator, asking $350.00
   2) 4 x 6 trailer. Asking $300.00.

   For more information on either item, please contact Jerry Hageman, N9ZJK, at 815-


                     New NOAA Weather Radio Transmitter

The National Weather cooperation with NIU'S Department of Environmental
Health and Safety...added a new NOAA Weather Radio transmitter and antenna on Grant
Tower on the NIU campus in Dekalb. The 100-watt radio station’s call sign is WNG-536
and it will broadcast continuous weather information for North Central Illinois on a
frequency of 162.550 MHZ. Severe weather watches and warnings for Dekalb County

and several other North Central Illinois counties will be broadcast on the new
station...preceded by a tone alarm and special coding.

Tom Ciciora, KA9QPN
Sandwich, IL EMA

Submitted by Frank Carraro, KF9NZ.


                             WW9AE/R, NWS ham station

         The Plainfield Radio League in association with the Will County Emergency
Management Agency put its emergency communications repeater on-air on Friday
afternoon, 10/18/2002. The repeater operates 449.550 MHz in and 444.550 MHz out. A
114.8 Hz CTCSS tone is required to access the repeater. The repeater is primarily for
emergency communication in Will County and surrounding areas, though it is open to all
amateurs of Technician class license and higher.

          The repeater identifies with the Plainfield Radio League callsign WW9AE/R.
Located in Joliet, Illinois, this repeater has been granted coordination by the Illinois
Repeater Association. With excellent coverage, I encourage any interested amateur to
check in on the repeater to the Plainfield Radio League informational net on Thursdays at
1900 local time. Will County ARES is currently scheduling its net time along with net
control stations.


Rob Sobkoviak, N9AJA
Will County EC - Illinois ARES
RACES Officer - Will County EMA
RACES 2nd Officer - Plainfield EMA
President - Plainfield Radio League

Submitted by Frank Carraro, KF9NZ.



15 SEP, 2002 - 1400 CDT

For those of you who have already received this message via other routes, I apologize for
the duplication.

After several delays, the Central Division now has its own website at: There are no pop-ups or other advertising on this site and it's a
work in progress. Many thanks to Clay Melhorn, N9IO, who has done, and continues to
do, all the website work.

Plan to visit this site from time to time as the information will be changed. You will find
a director's newsletter that will contain information of specific interest to Central
Division members. I plan to publish it about four times a year - more if necessary. There
are already links to other sites such our three state's legislative websites. More links of a
similar nature are being added.

If you have suggestions or comments, please let me know.

73 - George R. (Dick) Isely, W9GIG
Central Division Director -



Amateur Radio emergency communications training supported by a $181,900 federal
homeland security grant will begin within a few weeks instead of next year as reported
initially. During its first year, the grant from the Corporation for National and community
Service (CNCS) special volunteer program will reimburse the cost of Level I ARRL
Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Course training for up to 1700 volunteers.

"It will begin with the recruitment of additional mentors and trainers for the national
program," said ARRL Chief Development Officer Mary Hobart, K1MMH. Hobart and
Dan Miller, K3UFG--formerly ARRL Certification and Continuing Education Program
Coordinator and now the Emergency Communications Course Manager--have been
working with CNCS to expedite the grant details.

As Emergency Communications Course Manager, Miller will manage the CNCS
special volunteer program and United Technologies Corp training grants. Replacing
Miller as program coordinator August 19 will be Howard Robins, W1HSR.

The CNCS has accepted ARRL's proposal to commence the expanded emergency
training program September 1. The League was among several dozen nonprofit
organizations designated to receive some $10.3 million in federal money to boost
homeland defense volunteer programs.

Miller says that since the July 18 grant announcement, interest in the subsidized training
has been high. He urged those eager to participate to stand by for announcements via the
ARRL Web and other League news outlets. The first priority when the grant-supported
training effort kicks into gear in September will be to recruit and train at least 200
Amateur Radio Emergency Communications course mentors/trainers. These volunteers
then will help to manage and train the student load for the first year of the grant.

Anyone who has already completed the Level I course is qualified to become a mentor
with some additional training. Mentor candidates should contact Miller>
for information on how to take part.

Students taking advantage of Level I emergency communications training under the grant
program will be asked to pay for the course via credit card during the registration process.
Upon successfully completing the training and certification, students will be reimbursed
the $45 fee. Miller said the goal is to dramatically improve the course completion rate
from the current 68 percent to nearly 100 percent.

Hobart emphasized that community involvement is key. "It's not enough to just finish the
course," she said. "You're expected to join and take part in your local Amateur Radio
Emergency Service organization." The grant-training program is especially interested in
attracting more seniors--those 55 and older--and those for whom the course fee would
mean a hardship unless they were reimbursed. To register, you may visit

73 and thanks,
 Joe, KB9EZZ


              FCC opts for status quo at 2300 to 2305 MHz
ARLB063 FCC opts for status quo at 2300 to 2305 MHz

ARRL Bulletin 63 ARLB063
From ARRL Headquarters
Newington CT October 15, 2002
To all radio amateurs

ARLB063 FCC opts for status quo at 2300 to 2305 MHz

The FCC has dismissed an ARRL petition that sought primary status for amateurs at
2300-2305 MHz. At the same time, the Commission turned down petitions from
AeroAstro and MicroTrax—commercial interests that had hoped to share the spectrum
with Amateur Radio. The action, taken October 9, maintains the status quo on the band.

"That the commercial petitions were dismissed is, of course, good news," said ARRL
Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ. "We had argued for that outcome."

Sumner called the outcome of the League's petition, RM-10165, "mildly disappointing"
because, as he explained, a status upgrade "would provide some measure of protection
against future commercial proposals." Sumner pointed out that the FCC did not altogether
rule out a future status upgrade, but he cautioned that the band "is still vulnerable."

In turning down the ARRL's petition, the FCC said that since it was also dismissing the
MicroTrax and AeroAstro petitions for access to 2300-2305 MHz, "amateur operators'
weak-signal communications in the 2300-2305 MHz band will be protected if the
amateur allocation remains secondary." The FCC said the band "will remain in the
Commission's reserve, and the status quo in the band will be maintained until the
Commission reevaluates the spectrum status for the Amateur Service that may be

The FCC turned down the MicroTrax and AeroAstro applications in part because
appropriate spectrum already was available elsewhere and neither company had
demonstrated a need for an additional allocation. MicroTrax had proposed to establish a
Personal Location and Monitoring Service (PLMS) at 2300-2305 MHz under FCC Part
27 rules.

The AeroAstro petition went further, proposing to share the band on a co-primary basis
with the Amateur Service subject to technical and service rules. AeroAstro wanted to
establish its Satellite Enabled Notification System (SENS) messaging service under the
FCC's Miscellaneous Wireless Communication Service rules. The FCC also expressed
concerns that NASA's Deep Space Network would not be protected by the modified out-
of-band limits AeroAstro had proposed. Internationally, the 2300-2305 MHz band is
allocated to Fixed and Mobile services on a primary basis and to the Amateur Service on
a secondary basis in all three International Telecommunication Union regions. The
Radiolocation Service has a secondary allocation in the band in Region 1, and a primary
allocation in Regions 2 and 3.

A copy of the Order is available on the FCC Web site

                                                   Using APRS

APRS Network

        Commonly used aliases are: RELAY, WIDE, and GATE. Each alias denotes a
very different type of station. A RELAY station is one with a limited range (a few

miles). Clearly mobile stations and some fixed stations fall into this category. A WIDE
station is usually a dedicated station with wide local or regional coverage. A GATE
station has a very wide coverage area (500 miles or more). Most, if not all, GATE
stations are really gateways from 2 meters to 30 meters. If you’re monitoring your local
2-meter APRS network and suddenly see a symbol showing a station 500 miles away,
chances are it is a packet relayed through a GATE. (Depending on your station setup, it
might also be a packet that reached you directly via meteor-scatter. Yes, they’re doing
APRS meteor scatter, too!

On the Road

        For mobile use, we are still typically concerned with three parameters: BTEXT,
BEACON, and UNPROTO. If the TCC is configured properly, it will take the
information provided by the GPS (latitude, longitude, time) and automatically use that as
the beacon text. The beacon rate should be set to one-minute intervals, since we are now
moving and need to update our position more frequently. Lastly, the UNPROTO path
was set to APRS VIA WIDE, WIDE. For more applications it is common practice to add
the digipeater RELAY so that our final path is: APRS VIA RELAY, WIDE, WIDE

Configuring Your TNC and Software

         In one of the popular APRS software programs, (UI-VIEW), have you ever
wondered what the ―UI‖ stood for? If you have, you’ve asked a good question and
should know the answer.
         The APRS protocol relies on Unnumbered Information (UI) packet frames to
transmit location information. If you have previously used packet radio, you have used
UI frames when you called CQ or activated your beacon function. For APRS work, all
that is required is changing your beacon text, beacon rate, and path. On most TNC’S
these parameters are BTEXT, BEACON, and UNPROTO, respectively. In practice, there
may be a few other parameters needing initialization, but these three are particularly
         Setting the beacon rate requires a little understanding of the APRS network.
Technically, there is no reason you can’t transmit a location as often as you like. In
practice, however, fixed stations (e.g., home stations), should not transmit more
frequently than every 30 minutes. There is a good reason for this: APRS is an
unconnected broadcast protocol. This means there is no acknowledgement between
stations when a packet has been received. Therefore, if packets collide, there is no
retransmission and the information is lost. This is significantly different than the normal
AX.25 connected protocol that assures error-free transmission. So, to reduce collisions,
the rate between transmissions should be extended to assure a high probability that the
channel is available.
         The beacon text is the second important parameter that needs to be initialized.
Because we’re only talking about a fixed APRS station, there is no need for a GPS
device. All you need to know is your location. With that information, you can set up
your BTEXT.
For example:
         /120800z4107.35N/8849.53W-PHG2230/Steve in Streator, IL.

An alternate beacon text, if you don’t know your latitude and longitude, or if you don’t
want to tell the world your exact location, would be:
       /120800z[EN51od]-PHG2230/Steve in Streator, IL

        At this point I should explain what PHG is. The Power Height Gain (PHG) field
contains four digits that represent the power of the transmitter, the height, gain and
radiating pattern of the antenna. For our example, 2230 represents a transmitting power
of 4W, the antenna is 40 feet high with 3db gain, with an omnidirectional radiating
pattern. If this has you scratching your head in bewilderment, don’t worry! The APRS
documentation (see PROTOCOL.TXT in the APRS software bundle) explains in detail.
The hyphen (-), which indicates that you are a fixed station at your home. There are
nearly 200 symbols (characters) available that will designate your station as being in
anything from an ambulance to an airplane!

                                  APRS On The WEB

Kansas City APRS                           http://www.kcaprs/org/.
Tucson Amateur Packet Radio (TAPR)
Bob Bruninga, home page          
APRS digipeaters nation wide     

Keith Sproul, WU2Z                
Mark Sproul, KB2ICI            

Northern Illinois APRS           
APRS & GPS                       
Gary Wells, N3HCP                


APRS mailing list     subscribe aprssin [FirstName LastName]

Contents from June 1997 QST.
From the desk of KB9UPS

                            From the Editor’s Desk
        I do offer my sincere apologies for the newsletter being one week late this month.
However, I had some commitments that interfered with the timely publication of the
newsletter this month. As always, keep those submissions coming my way. I think we
have had a very successful year in establishing a means of communication for each
member of the Starved Rock Radio Club to keep informed of local, national, and
international amateur radio happenings.

       The deadline for submitting items for publication in the November edition of the
newsletter will be Sunday, November 11th, 2002.

Jesse L. Risley, KB9TMA; 815-673-1023 (home phone)
SRRC ―Static‖ Editor

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