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The club has connected our 444.050 MHz repeater to the Yaesu Wires-X system.

 It allows our repeater to connect with other repeaters and stations around the block or around the world.  The terminology they use is nodes and rooms.  But they really are repeaters and stations.

 So how do you know where and what to connect to?  You need to bookmark the following website:

 https://www.yaesu.com/jp/en/wires-x/id/active_room.php

 There you will see a list of thousands of “rooms” or stations that are currently connected and available.  Here is a sample of what the list looks like…

 

 

On the far left is some information about the room choices.  The next column is the most important.  This 5 digit number is your key to connecting to that station (or room).

 But equally important is the next column that’s called ACT.  That is the activity or how many people are currently connected or using the room.  If it is all zeros, nobody is listening and it would make no sense to try to connect to that room.  But look at the bottom two rooms, lots of people are active there.  That would be your best bet to find someone to talk to.

 You must remember you are on ham radio when using this system so you must use your call and be courteous and allow other people to talk too.  You may connect to a room and hear nothing or a conversation underway.  Listen for a moment to make sure you are not cutting in on an existing contact.  This system replaces short-wave skip with an Internet connection.

 So now you have checked the list and have a room you want to connect to.  First, listen to our repeater and then put out your call and ask is anyone using the repeater?  There may be a lull in a conversation and some club member may already be connected to a room.  So you must listen before trying to connect.  The simplest method is to monitor the repeater a while before you want to use it.

 If all is clear, have that 5 digit room number ready, announce your call and keep the push-to-talk button pushed and tap on your keypad the pound sign followed by the 5 digit room number.  That’s it.  Do not let up on the push-to-talk while doing this sequence.

 It would look like:        (your call) #12345

 Do it smoothly, maybe practice off the air so you can do it confidently.

When you connect you might hear nothing or a conversation underway.  There is no confirmation from the system that you have successfully connected to the room.  So listen before putting out your call.

 HOW DO I DISCONNECT?  This is most important, announce your call and on your keypad press the asterisk or the star sign once.  You will hear a series of beeps that confirm you have disconnected and the repeater is back to local operation.

 This system is NOT available on Sunday mornings, Thursdays at 7 PM or any time emergency communications are needed.

 All this is a work in progress so please understand some things might change.  For now limit your session on the Wires-X system to one half hour at a time and then standby to let other people use it.

 Remember you are representing yourself, our area and our club to the world.

 Of course the primary use of the repeater remains the same, for local communications.

 But at other times…have fun and talk to the world!

Who is that ham in the red shirt??

Welcome New Members

Charles Ligon: KG5RSV

Mark Clamon

James Ogburn

Two of our new members will be studying hard for the Tech Test on April 29th during our next Ham Cram Course provided by George Yarger, W5BRG:       brotherg@gmail.com

Location: Harbor Baptist Church, Payne Springs

Time: 8am  test begins at 2pm

Cost: $10 for the FCC filing fee-no cost for the course

 

 

D-Star, Fusion and DMR

Say that again, we can link  to digital repeaters all over the world with our hand held radios!!

The Cedar Creek Amateur Radio Club is placing copies of ‘Ham Radio For Dummies’ in public libraries and schools around the Cedar Creek Area. Checking one out is as easy as going to your school or public library and reading about one of the oldest and most respected hobbies in the world.

The book will inform and teach you information about what is need to get your Ham Radio License. And a local website is provided on the first page where you can see information about local events and where and when testing is provided in the area.

Once the test is over…what do you do now????

Well, you need to get on the air and start enjoying the hobby!

 Technician Class

If you recently passed the Technician Class License test, you’ll want to get on the air on frequencies above 50Mhz. The most popular frequencies for new Technicians are the 2Meter band. Most 2M traffic uses frequency modulation (FM) although you are licensed to use many modes.

On 2M FM, transmissions normally travel almost by “line of sight”. There are exceptions to every rule, but if you want to use 2M, chances are you will communicate directly with another Amateur (normally called simplex), or via a device called a repeater that amplifies your signal and increases your range. A simplex radio system works fine for large, open, flat areas. In cities, suburban areas, and mountainous regions however buildings and hills may block radio signals thereby reducing the radio systems’ effectiveness. Repeater systems provide a solution to this problem. When using a repeater, all stations listen on frequency F1 and transmit on F2. Every message that is transmitted on F2 is simultaneously retransmitted on F1 by the repeater.

So, How Do I Get on 2M??

First you need a radio. The good news is that 2M equipment is plentiful and fairly cheap. You can find a 2M radio (rig) for around $140 new. Used rigs can be found for under $100. So where do you look??

But, we’re getting ahead of ourselves…

First check out the book at the library, and then get involved at the local meetings held on Saturdays in the Cedar Creek area. The Cedar Creek Amateur Radio Club meets the second Saturday of each month at the Mabank Cafe, Mabank, TX. The meeting starts at 9am, but most members come around 8am to enjoy the buffet breakfast.

Brad Koskelin, Asst. Supt. of Mabank ISD said:

I delivered the books to the Jr. High and high school libraries and visited with the Lead Librarian. I expressed to her your desire in trying to generate interest in Ham Radio operation with young people and shared some of our conversation with her regarding what it takes to become licensed and the what becoming an amateur radio operator means. She was very excited about sharing something new with the students.

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Mabank: Brad Koskelin, Asst. Supt. of Mabank ISD accepts copie from club member Glenn Hughes

 

 

canton1Canton:  Canton Librarian Kristin Rose accepts her copies from club member Glenn Hughes

 

kaufman2

Kaufman:  Yasma Yvette Holland, Director of the Kaufman County Library displays her copy

malakoff1

Malakoff:  Randy Perry, Superintendent Malakoff ISD

 

Thank you Glenn Hughes for being the coordinator for this project. Job well done.

Where Can You Find “Ham Radio for Dummies?”

 Canton High School and Canton Junior High

.Kemp High School…

.Mabank High School and Junior High

The libraries in Kaufman, the Cedar Creek Library in Seven points and the Tri-County Library in Mabank,

Athens school district

Scurry Rosser High school and Junior High

Malakoff High School and Middle School

New Club Members

Today we had three new members join the club.  Welcome new members:

Aaron Hatch    no call sign yet

Butch Keller, KF5ZDE former member who re upped

Charles Davis, KG5RNR

Monthly Meeting  February 11, 2017

President William Moos, WM5MM called the meeting to order at 0900

Present were 29 Members and 3 visitors

Three new members: Charlie Davis, KG5RNR, Butch Keller, KF5ZDE, Aaron Hatch, no call sign

Reports

Treasurer’s Report- Jeff Irion    Balance of $3313.26. Motion made and seconded to accept the report, motion passed

Secretary’s Report-Charles Wells   read the minutes for the January 2016 meeting:  Motion made and seconded to accept the report, motion passed

ARES Report-Charles Wells   The ARES Training net was held on January 10th with 6 check-ins. There was no Saturday training session in January. A basic Skywarn class will be held in Kaufman at the Fire Station on Wednesday the 15th. There will basic followed by an advanced Skywarn class held in Garland on the 18th.

Door Prizes-The Mabank Café donated a buffet breakfast as a door prize. Three door prizes were given away.

Announcements

Ham Cram will be held on April 29th at the Harbor Baptist Church.

Ed –reported that the hardware was installed at the repeater site and at the Harbor Baptist Church which provides internet service to the repeater site. In addition, the part needed to allow digital access from the 440 repeater has been ordered.

Glenn Hughes reported that 30 copies of Ham Radio for Dummies have been placed in the various school and public libraries in the Cedar Creek Area.  On behalf of the Friend of the Kaufman Library, Dave Randall expressed a warm thank you to the club for the book donation.

Ed reported that he and George Yarger installed an antenna for club member, Yeager Markins.

Jeff Irion proposed a fox hunt for April or May.  Several members express an interest. More to follow.

Dave Randall provided information about the N5ZUA repeater 444.775+ pl 100.0 in Corsicana, TX. It is linked to a system in CA. For those who intend to use the link, be aware that the system takes long breaks so the echo link and IRLP stations can check in and participate. Therefore, you need to listen for a while before transmitting.

Meeting Feature

President Moos presented a short video on the use of short/small antennas for HF use.

The meeting was adjourned at 0955.