Category Archives: Other Events

Hidden Transmitter Hunt Thursday 8/29

Overview:
With a stretch of nice weather in the forecast, it’s time to dust off the transmitter hunting gear! This Thursday (8/29/19), the Bloomington Amateur Radio Association will be hosting a transmitter hunt, beginning at 6:30 PM at Bloomington Civic Plaza from the parking lot on the west side of the building (near the southwest entrance).

The field of play will be the City of Bloomington, bounded on the west by US HWY 169, to the north by I-494, and to the south and east by the Minnesota River.

Format: Two hidden transmitters; one 500 mW to 1 W, the other 10-20 mW and in the general vicinity of the stronger transmitter. The transmitters will be on alternate 1-minute transmit windows.

Accessibility: A vehicle will be required for finding the transmitters, but at-home operators (in Bloomington and possibly surrounding municipalities) with omnidirectional or directional antennas can still contribute with coordinated hunting (see Resources below for tips from WB4APR). On-foot hunting is expected to take up to a mile of walking on sidewalks, dirt/grass paths, or over cut grass.

Difficulty: This is intended to be a beginner-friendly event, and those without directional antennas are encouraged to take part in a coordinated hunt (see Resources below). With sunset at 7:56 PM, the event will be complete around 8:00–8:15 PM.

Frequencies:
Two hidden transmitters: 146.565 MHz FM
Safety and administrative: 147.090 MHz, +600 kHz, no tone, analog FM (KD0CL VHF repeater)
Coordinated hunting: 443.175 MHz, +5 MHz, DCS 047 (TX and RX), analog FM (KD0CL UHF repeater; repeater is Yaesu C4FM capable, but please use analog for this event)

Resources:
Homing In, and specifically this page on first-time hunting techniques and equipment.
Bob Bruninga’s (WB4APR) Direction Finding Tips for those with Omnidirectional Antennas.
K6KN’s Presentation for SFARC on Transmitter Hunting.

Map:
Parks, roads, and lakes of Bloomington (PDF).

Contact:
Bill; AE0EE[at]arrl.net

Updates:
8/26/19 0105z: Added K6KN presentation link.
8/26/19 1846z: WB9CFN looking for teammate.
8/28/19 1652z: Added printable map of Bloomington.
8/29/19 1746z: Corrected UHF repeater frequency, 444.375 443.175 MHz.
8/29/19 2105z: Updated printable map to be more grayscale friendly.

Further updates will be added to this post on the BARA website.

January VHF Contest 2019

Bill, AE0EE, operates 2 m FM on a wintry day.

Bill, AE0EE, operates 2 m FM on a wintry day.

The ARRL January VHF Contest is coming up this weekend! There are three FM focus times (on 146.550 and 446.00 MHz simplex; times CST): 4:00-4:30 PM Saturday, 8:00-8:30 AM Sunday, and 9:30-9:59 PM Sunday (after the net). We have a 2-page quick-start guide and a 10-page introduction to VHF+ contesting if you want to read up on how to participate, and the Northern Lights Radio Society has a spreadsheet with the upper midwest VHF+ activity. The exchange is your grid square (EN34 for Bloomington and other south metro areas, EN35 in the north metro). Participating in the VHF contest is a great way to get a few contacts in the log and try out some simplex communications.

September VHF Contest 9/8-9

This weekend is the American Radio Relay League’s September VHF
Contest, which runs from 1:00 PM CDT Saturday through 9:59 PM CDT
Sunday. There is going to be a lot of rover activity near the Twin
Cities, so be sure to hop on—especially if you can run SSB or FT8 on
6 m and 2 m. Even if you’re FM-only, listen on 146.550 FM simplex
and 446.000 FM simplex. Full rules here.

To make things more interesting for FM-only stations, I recommend
focusing on 4:00-4:30 PM Saturday, 8:00-8:30 AM Sunday, and 9:30-9:59
PM Sunday—or rather immediately following the Bloomington Amateur
Radio Association’s Sunday night net at 9:00 PM that takes place on
the 147.090+ repeater.

For the contest, you need to exchange and log callsigns and grid
squares, as well as recording frequency, mode, and time of the
contact. Bloomington and the south metro is in EN34 (echo november
three four), central and north metro should check here.
The pace of the
contest is usually slow enough that paper logging is a reasonable
choice—but you will probably want to enter it into a computer (e.g.
here) to submit for log
checking.

Sample exchange:
* 146.550 FM *
[K0BBC/R]: CQ contest, kilo zero bravo bravo charlie rover!
[W0ZQ]: Whiskey zero zulu quebec
[K0BBC/R]: Whiskey zero zulu quebec, echo november two five
[W0ZQ]: Echo november three four. Move to 446?
[K0BBC/R]: Sure! Kilo zero bravo bravo charlie rover
[W0ZQ]: Whiskey zero zulu quebec to 446.000
* Switch to 446.000 FM*
[K0BBC/R]: Whiskey zero zulu quebec, kilo zero bravo bravo charlie, rover!
[W0ZQ]: Kilo zero bravo bravo charlie rover, echo november three four
[K0BBC/R]: Echo november two five, thanks for another band, see you in
the next grid!
[W0ZQ]: Thanks! Whiskey zero zulu quebec
[K0BBC/R]: Kilo zero bravo bravo charlie rover, anyone else on frequency?
[K0BBC/R]: Kilo zero bravo bravo charlie rover back to 146.550

Coordination via non-amateur means (internet, cell phones, etc.) is
explicitly allowed for this contest as long as all necessary
information is exchanged over the air. That means you can phone or
text someone and choose a frequency and time (generally “now” or “in
five minutes when I get this thing set up”) to have a contact. This
is particularly useful with stations that have directional antennas or
if you want to make sure you get a contact with.

One place to look for activity is the Northern Lights Radio Society’s
activity spreadsheet.
The spreadsheet shows the bands and modes of both fixed stations
(first tab) and rovers (second tab), as well as the rover location
plans and contact info.

Another good place to go is the W0UC spots page.

If you have 6 m capability and can run WSJT-X, get on FT8! Make sure
you enable the VHF/UHF/Microwave features and check the “NA VHF
Contest” box. There should be some FT8 activity throughout the day.
Early in the morning (5-7 AM) you might also try WSJT-X’s MSK144 mode
to bounce signals off the ionized trails of meteors.

Want more action? Hop in your vehicle and join the Saturday
afternoon/evening rover pack near Winsted, MN! Even with just a
handheld, you will be able to work several other rovers at the corner
and run up a big score.

Using APRS or looking for rovers? Check out aprs.fi and the Mountain Lake APRS propagation page.

Some VHF contest resources can be found in Membership section of this website.

Paul Bittner W0AIH

Paul Bittner WØAIH Stillwater Club Special Guest September 8th

Paul Bittner, WØAIH, will be the special guest of the Stillwater Amateur Radio Association on Saturday September 8th.

Paul has a massive multi radio multi operator contest station in Wisconsin.  He has built most of the antennas, towers and equipment to put it all together by himself.  He is master tinkerer and can fix just about anything.  He has amateur radio friends, around the world, and has had the opportunity to visit many of them in person.

He has an outgoing personality and tells great stories.  If you’re lucky, you might get invited to visit his “shack” East of Eau Claire, WI.

7:30 A.M. Breakfast at Perkins Restaurant 2050 W Frontage Rd Stillwater, MN 55082
9:00 A.M. Meeting at Boutwells Landing, Auditorium A, 5600 Norwich Pkwy, Oak Park Heights, MN 55082

stillwater amateur radio association

Radios in the Park September 6, 2018

As we head into fall, here’s an outdoor operating event that won’t require a winter parka…
We began the 2018 season of Radios in the Park back in May with the New Ham Night session. Tomorrow, we wrap up the scheduled sessions with another evening at Valley View Park in Oak Park Heights, beginning around 5:30 PM.

No special activities are planned for this session, just grab your gear, come on out, set-up your station and get on the air! Don’t have a portable station, no problem, come on out and gather ideas for that time when you decide to put one together.

Amateur Radio Extra Class License Study Class

Amateur Radio Extra Class License Study Class – September 2018
Want to increase your radio knowledge and bragging rights? Come join this study class using the Gordon West materials. This class is sponsored by the Maple Grove Radio Club – a service oriented club serving the Northwest suburbs.

When: Thursday’s starting September 20th. Class usually runs twelve weeks.
Class time 6:45 – 9:15 pm
Where: Maple Grove Fire Station #2 – Upper entrance
13450 Maple Knoll Way – Corner of Elm Creek Blvd and Maple Knoll Way
Cost: $10 registration fee due first night of class. You will also need to purchase the Gordon West text book for about $22.
Details will be emailed to you after you register for the class.

To Register or get answers to your questions: Email registration@mnyarc.org
Please include your name, Address, and phone contact information as well as your email address.

The Extra Class License exam will be offered on the last night of class for an additional $15 fee.

Please share this information with you fellow hams.

Gordy Hanson N0ZRD
Training Chair
Maple Grove Radio Club

ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest

Last Chance Tailgate Swap Fest

HAMFEST/CONVENTION

09/29/2018

Start Date: 09/29/2018
End Date: 09/29/2018
Location: West Medicine Lake Community Club
1705 Forestview Lane
Plymouth, MN
Website: http://tcfmc.org
Sponsor: Twin City FM Club
Type: ARRL Hamfest
Talk-In: 146.76 (PL 114.8)
Public Contact: Michael Miller , NØNY
9416 West 14th Street St. Louis Park, MN 55426
Phone: 612-718-4718
Email: trustee.tcfmc@gmail.com

http://www.arrl.org/hamfests/last-chance-tailgate-swap-fest

ARRL Sanctioned Hamfest

SMARTSFEST

HAMFEST/CONVENTION

09/22/2018

Start Date: 09/22/2018
End Date: 09/22/2018
Location: Cologne Community Center
1211 Village Parkway
Cologne, MN 55322
Website: http://smartsfest.org
Sponsor: SMARTS Radio Club
Type: ARRL Hamfest
Talk-In: 147.165+ PL Open
Public Contact: Monte Casebier , ADØDB
620 North Linden Street Belle Plaine, MN 56011
Phone: 952-873-3390
Email: ContactUs@SmartsFest.org

http://www.arrl.org/hamfests/smartsfest-2