CQ CQ CQ – #HamRadio Update – A Scenario

ham radio maximilian kolbe sp3rn1Later today I’ll start up my Echolink program.  And remember that WB0YLE has a node for us.

Last weekend I heard CW of a North American QSO (“contact”) Party that was going on.  I deciphered some of the calls, looked them up, and sent a few emails.  Most everyone replied and with encouraging notes.  I’ll keep working on the Morse Code, with or without a key.  [UPDATE: see below] Dash by dash.

Here is a sample of what it sounded like while the QSO Party was going on. You can hear how everyone jumps in when a call sign is sent out.

One of the interesting moments in listening last week was hearing/deciphering signals from someone who seemed to be blind.  He was talking about other blind hams.  It was an actual conversation, rather than just the exchange of call signs.

I haven’t made any additional progress on my contact card yet.  I need a template for the blank side for the filling in of information.

Finally, I repeat what I posted last week.

During the month of August, there will be a Ham “Event” in honor of St. Maximilian Kolbe, who was slain on 14 August 1944 in Auschwitz.  I heard this via PSK31.

St. Maximilian was SP3RN.

At QRZ.com I saw

July, 20, 2015

Hello  …

I have been in contact with Ted Figlock W1HGY, and wanted to communicate my intentions for the St. Maximilian Maria Lokbe SP3RN special event activation. Call sign will be K8M and the dates will be between 01 August 2015 0400 (UTC) to 16 August 2015 0359 (UTC),

A standard sized QSL card will be available, for US stations, please send SASE, for all DX, please send $1 (US, CDN or Euro all ok) and self addressed envelope. My address is good on www.qrz.com. Please no buro.

Operating modes will be SSB, PSK31, and possibly RTTY

VY 73 de Joe Miller KJ8O Troy Michigan

So, you Hams out there, say a prayer to St. Maximilian and get to work!

You never know what use we may need to make of radio, especially low power, in the future.  For a while now I’ve been thinking about how to network with Catholic hams, even dioceses.  Ham radio is useful in emergencies.  What if we were faced with The Big Emergency?

Scenario:

nce upon a time…

…in his Tiny House at the Sheltered Glade, Father stays in touch by CW with the faithful priests and the few Catholic bishops left on the continent through the Catholic net they had prudently formed when everything was hunky-dory.

Before the Collapse.

He carefully transcribes bishops’ brief pastoral letters and sermons along with messages to other priests and faithful in the area, and then relays them to other hams at times and frequencies scheduled by consulting the fifth letter and third number on certain pages of the 1962 Roman Missal.  It’s a little maddening to work out the coded schedule, but it has to be done this way.

Father finds it a little harrowing to have the headphones on and to be buried in the static and the flow of the code.  You can hear what’s going outside in the world, but you can’t hear what’s going on outside the house.  Ironic.  Scary, but ironic.

The transmissions are over. Tidying his work space his mind drifts to the day back before the SHTF when he had the bishop out to the Tiny House.  He used the Roman Ritual to bless the radio equipment.  He could have done it himself, but it’s better to have the bishop see what had been organized and do it himself. It was a beautiful prayer…

God, who ordered all things in creation in a marvelous way, determining even their measure, number, and weight; and who gave man a share in your knowledge, thus enabling him to detect and control the latent forces with which you endowed the things of the universe; be pleased, we pray, to bless + these instruments made for transmitting wavelengths of sound through the air, spreading out in all directions as instantaneously as lightning. Let them carry messages of aid in times of crises, of solace in times of distress, of advice in times of doubt, of light in times of darkness, and thus make known the glory of your name more widely throughout the world that all its peoples may be gathered into the fellowship of your love; through Christ our Lord.

Father shuts down the radio and power source. With practiced speed he secures the door to the lower level punching the code, closes the vault-like door of the ground level storage area and slips on the pre-sorted chest rig and camelbak pack. He double checks his mags and the batteries for the handheld, slings the 5.56 AR-15, and then scans through the ballistic glass windows for a few minutes before closing the steel shutters.

Saftety off.  Exit.  Scan.

He stands perfectly still, listening.  Looking.

Minutes pass.

Nothing out of place comes to his senses.

As he locks the door he recalls with regret – and a rise of the hair on his arms – the smell of the men who were around the corner of the house.  And what followed.

The first step away from the Tiny House always gives him the creeps now.

Shrugging his gear into place he sets out with a glance up at the nearly invisible wires of the various dipole antennas strung amidst the branches of the trees.

He points himself toward the Appointed Place for Holy Mass on the Rock By The Stream.  It usually takes a full day to get there, Deo volente.

He blesses the stone-piled graves as he moves down the path in the forest. “Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord…”.

As he gets in range of the Appointed Place, he should be able to contact one of the hams in the area who will relay his arrival via the GMRS and FRS radios people have. That’s a security hole, but they have to do something to let people know when to gather.

Besides, things have been calm lately but you can’t have people just waiting around.

In the early days there were packs of dogs who weren’t afraid of people.  There were gangs of marauders and desperate families and individuals who had survived the chaos, starvation and disease. Then came the true wolf packs.

The individuals and families were thinned out by now, but he had heard there were still some gangs and, as the chaos settled, who ever was “in charge” these days had starting hunting priests again.

“Not this priest!”, he muttered.

There are probably going to be a few baptisms and maybe a marriage or two this time.  At least he hopes so.  It’s about time they tie the knot and have the graces of the sacraments.  Since the Collapse, things have been … intense… for young people and pretty much without the benefit of clergy. Often without any relatives at all, poor things.  But a lot of them, the ones who didn’t succumb to despair, found Religion.  They have the Faith now.  Total disaster helps people sort their values.

People in the Catholic net are pretty serious.

This week at the Appointed Place he should also rendezvous with a contact conveying wine through the underground.  He is to keep some for his own use and collect messages and news for the net to be broadcast.  The messages are one thing, but it always surprises him that the wine gets through.  But it does.  He had made some from regional grapes but it was better suited for hand to hand combat than Mass.  Brutal but valid.

The building project at the Rock by the Stream is going well.  Pretty soon they’ll have to think about what to call the chapel.  “Should I try to get the bishop to come?”, he mused.  “It’s a hike and he isn’t young.”

Mostly, Father didn’t like the idea of the bishop saying that it was time for him to be consecrated.  He shivered.

Eyes moving.  Not too fast.   Stop.  Listen.  Nothing.

Keep moving.

“O God, Who did cause the children of Israel to traverse the Red Sea dryshod; Thou Who did point out by a star to the Magi the road that led them to Thee; grant to me I beseech Thee, a prosperous journey and propitious weather; so that, under the guidance of Thy holy angels I may safely reach my journey’s end, and later the haven of eternal salvation.  Hear, O Lord, the prayers of Thy servants. Bless their journeyings. Thou Who art everywhere present, shower everywhere upon them the effects of Thy mercy; so that, insured by Thy protection against all dangers, they may return to offer Thee their thanksgiving. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.”

Next week it’ll be time again to hike up the Big Rocky Hill with a portable rig and antenna for a scheduled DX contact from “Rome”, wherever “Rome” may be now.

He had an inkling that some big decisions had been made.

Okay, that’s enough of that.

I am still securing some useful items.  I have an antenna to order.  I may drive to Milwaukee this coming week where there is a radio store.  That’s what I’ve got.

I am building a list of hams who frequent this blog:

Z-Blog HAMS

  • acardnal KE4WKV
  • Joan W4JMJ
  • BMKoenig K3BMK
  • chris1 KJ4MPE
  • crule N4TII
  • Bryan Boyle WB0YLE
  • Andy Lucy KG4ZMF
  • Navy Jeff KC9TCZ
  • EXCHIEF N7WR
  • pledbet424 WB0MZT
  • Kenneth Jones KB3JA/BY
  • asperges G4NJH
  • Dan Soderlund KBØEO
  • Hesiodos AD7QQ
  • MWindsor – KT5WX
  • dahveed – KD8ZIB
  • FloridaJoan – W4JMJ
  • Jilly – WA4CZD
  • jpaluh – KB3LUE
  • Humilitas – KC4RAC
  • Jeffc – AC5XL
  • pledbet424 – WB0MZT
  • JBBIII – AD7QQ
  • Patrick L – AG4JQ
  • Dr Guinness – VK3SJB
  • MacBride – KC2MEO
  • Evan C – N5EDC
  • boxerpaws1952 – N3XFQ
  • chris_R – N3GBJ
  • Jack – W1JEM
  • Julia12 – KC9ALW
  • moon123 – KB9VSE
  • Pearl – KC8JSL
  • OK_doc – KF5THY
  • Baritone – KD5AYJ
  • IPSB – SA2BXP
  • ByzCath08 – W8GMN
  • Mojoron – K0CCP
  • Deacon Bob – W8CRO
  • Incensum – N9WIV
  • SimonsDad – KB1WOL
  • O. Possum – KC1BGU
  • Curt – AF7KQ
  • Arthur – KD9BRV
  • jeff_logullo – N0MII
  • ckamas – AD6CL
  • revueltos67 – KE5AKL
  • marty5519 – N7CYY

PRIESTLY HAMS

  • Fr. David McGuire AE4LH
  • frdanbecker WA1ZHQ
  • Rev. Canon Glenn Gardner K9ALT
  • plaf26 – KC0GA
  • Fr. Bryan – KD8ZFF
  • starprst- AB4TS
  • Fr. J. Stefanski – SQ3SWS / N2FCH
  • Fr. Paul A. – Cannariato KB2TJY

There must be more of you!

KC9ZJN
73

UPDATE:

I received a key today from W2LJ.  Thanks!

UPDATE:

This is kinda cool. In the combox one of you – N5EDC – said he was going to be on PSK31 on 14.070. I saw it in time, fired up the rig, and saw this.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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40 Responses to CQ CQ CQ – #HamRadio Update – A Scenario

  1. ASPM Sem says:

    I knew I recognized KC0GA from somewhere – it’s on the license plate of a priest I know. Cool.

  2. Fr. Bryan says:

    I was on this morning on both 40 meters and 20 meters, listening to voice, and sending CQ on PSK31, The bands seemed very unstable today. Signals were fading in and out, more out and hard to pick up from the noise. I took a look at the banner on QRZ and the solar conditions were unsettled, and it showed that most of the HF bands were poor or fair. I haven”t been on the air in a moth and a half, and I asked another HAM about this, and was told that the summer months can play havoc with HF propagation. I will be on the air again tonight on 40 meters after dark to see if propagation improves. I haven’t figured out EchoLink yet, but I do need to do that so I can chat with Fr. Z sometime. 73 de KD8ZFF – Fr. Bryan

    [Thanks for the update!]

  3. MWindsor says:

    Your scenario is depressing…probably accurate…but a bit depressing. Our Lady of Akita, pray for us.

    Yes, people will find faith again. But imagine how many will be lost before that time comes.

  4. MWindsor says:

    Fr. Bryan – check out spaceweather.com if you haven’t seen it yet. We’re on the back end of a pretty hefty geomagnetic storm. There’s still a 55% chance of disruption in HF ranges for the 9th and 10th as well.

    And there’s now a whopping big sunspot pointed our way.

    73’s,
    Mark
    KT5WX

  5. MWindsor says:

    Oh, and Fr. Bryan – What time and what frequency? I’ll try to get my rig out and feed the mosquitos if the conditions get a wee bit better.

  6. Fr. Bryan says:

    KT5WX, I am shooting for 9 PM EDT give or take (I have an evening meeting tonight) and I will try 7.260.

  7. Gregorius says:

    Those are lovely prayers in that unsettling scenario. Where are they from?

  8. Gregorius: One is a prayer for a journey and the other is from the Roman Ritual for the blessing of a radio station.

  9. Andrea Mary says:

    Nice scenario, Father! Or, well, not “nice,” but it had a great atmosphere and humor, too. You should consider a side career in fiction (or is it?? Please God it is fiction for a long time, except for the part where people return to the Faith!).

  10. Evan C says:

    N5EDC checking in tonight.. currently on 14.070 PSK31 for the next 30 minutes or so.

    [I didn’t see you, but I saw someone who saw you! See the top entry, which I updated.]

  11. wanda says:

    I would love to read that whole story, Fr. Z. You must write that book.

  12. revueltos67 says:

    Fr.,

    You might find this interesting. There a regular CW QSO going on in your audio clip along with all the contest traffic. The morse is a little slower and lower in frequency than the contest chatter and is very well sent.

    It starts immediately with the following:

    “579 579 in md md and name Dan Dan – ok? AR K7JKZ de K2YWE K”

    This ends at 0:30 in the clip.

    So K2YWE, Dan, in Maryland is talking to (“working” in ham speak) K7JKZ and has given him a signal report of 579 which means that he’s perfectly readable (5) at S7 (7) with perfect tone (9). The “AR” is a “pro sign” meaning “End of Message”, “de” is CW speak for “from”, and the “K” at the end, meaning “over”, turns it over to K7JKZ. K7JKZ is not audible in your clip.

    K2YWE’s side of the QSO then picks up again at 1:20 with the following:

    “R FB John – ur 10w is as loud as my”

    and the clip ends with what is probably the start of the number 6.

    So K2WYE, Dan, is telling the other operator, John, that he copied him well – “R FB” is CW speak for “roger, fine business” – and that his 10 watt signal is quite loud.

    I looked up the two calls on QRZ.COM.

    Apparently K2YWE, the ham we can hear, is Dan Zeitlin in Annapolis, MD. It’s not surprising that he’s sending well as he’s a member of FOC, the First Class Operators club, a fairly exclusive bunch of CW operators.

    K7JKZ is John Maass from Oklahoma City, OK. As I said, he’s not audible. This is quite common – because two hams can hear each other in no way implies that a third station will be able to hear both. Apparently John is running an Elecraft KX3 as he has a picture of that rig on his QRZ page and the comment from K2YWE about 10 watts, fits with this. The KX3 has a nominal max output of 10 watts and is one of the few rigs that does.

    73,

    Mike – ke5akl

    [Cool!]

    Fr. Z's Gold Star Award

  13. listening on 14.255 for a half hour or so. seems to be running coast to coast pretty good for summer night. give a shout and if I hear, will QSO

    [I have tried to get some phone but the distortion is so bad that I haven’t been able to make anything out.]

  14. MWindsor says:

    I tried Fr. Brian. QRN was wicked at that hour. About 20 past I heard a bit of conversation, but it was just above the noise level. If you were out there, you were lost in the static.

    Another day,

    73,
    KT5WX

  15. Fr. Bryan says:

    I had a couple QSO’s near 7.260 with contesting stations on the east coast. On that exact frequency, I was hearing a commercial radio station. Perhaps we can arrange a sked for another time. I am able to operate in the general license portion of the 40, 20, 15, 12, and 10 meter bands. 40 and 20 work best. But I would be happy to try to arrange an HF sked with WDTPRS blog visitors. Fr. Z, can you operate on HF yet?

  16. Fr. Bryan says:

    Ditto to Fr. Z’s comment regarding 14.255 on 20 meters. Can’t hear anything.

  17. Fr. Bryan says: Fr. Z, can you operate on HF yet?

    I think I can, but I haven’t worked out my antenna options yet. I’m pretty sure that my set up as it stands right now isn’t adequate.

  18. jameeka says:

    Thank you revuelto67. My iPhone super duper Morse decoder only gave me gibberish: ” ..dan….dan ok?….rfbjohn=ur 10wis as loud asmy d”, but the app worked on audio Morse code I generate on my laptop. So much for surviving TEOKWAWKI.

    Father Z, I can’t wait for your novel! “Brutal but valid” —what a GREAT line.

  19. marty5519 says:

    I was on the New Mexico 2 meter Mega Link about an hour ago talking with my son who is camping in the Gila Wilderness somewhere on top of a mountain. This megalink is a series of repeaters that are interconnected and covers the entire state of New Mexico. A ham could be on the most southern point along the Mexican border and with a 2 meter handy talky have a QSO with another ham in Farmington, NM, near the Colorado border, over 450 miles away.

    Marty5519
    N7CYY
    Las Cruces

  20. MWindsor says:

    “I think I can, but I haven’t worked out my antenna options yet. I’m pretty sure that my set up as it stands right now isn’t adequate.”

    What are you running? Lay it all out – from the rig itself to antenna and anything in between. I haven’t seen you mention an antenna tuner or an SWR meter in any of your posts.

    And after the collapse – you realize you’d never be alone on a mission like this, right? You and your fellow priests would be, to some of us, the most important people on the planet. If so many survived that you’d still have people for Mass, you’d be well protected.

  21. MWindsor says:

    “I am able to operate in the general license portion of the 40, 20, 15, 12, and 10 meter bands. 40 and 20 work best. But I would be happy to try to arrange an HF sked with WDTPRS blog visitors.”

    I think this is a great idea. Odds are good that we’ll eventually need something like this. It’s better to set it up now than to glue it together on short notice. I think it would also be wise if we all had the ability to pass traffic too. “Whiskey Delta Tango Papa Romeo Sierra traffic net”. Well, maybe that’s a bit long.

  22. benedetta says:

    Enjoyed your novella first installment (?), Father. It nicely provokes a consideration of how one might be called to “survive” whatever this is, has been, even now, of a destruction of the Church and what binds us within her, as well as what may be on the horizon, even more vicious, with a violence that is open and not hidden, with an attack that manages to come to the open top of the agenda for some in power. Perhaps it can be God’s will that we prepare, prep for when tsh(an even bigger)fan, even now put systems in place assuming our (or our children’s or our grandchildren’s) civil liberties may be greatly curtailed, and practice even in present terms doing more with less. As always this goes in the spiritual realm firstly, of course. I see more clearly that survival of something harrowing can mean some work for us to do for the Church.

  23. “I am able to operate in the general license portion of the 40, 20, 15, 12, and 10 meter bands. 40 and 20 work best. But I would be happy to try to arrange an HF sked with WDTPRS blog visitors.”

    Keeping things in the general portion will mean the best chance of catching more than sticking it in the lower 75 or 50 KHz portions. Or…study a while and take the Extra (it’s really not that hard..) and relax all the band restrictions on your operations…;)

    I’d make the suggestion that you use echolink (it is only via the net, after all, unless the rig the controller it is connected to is powered up…) as a quick method (a couple folks I know listen around 9PM) to sync up to QSY to an HF frequency.

    If you go to www my callsign dot com, I have a propagation/spacewx live chart up on that page to check propagation if you’re interested.

    I’ve found that using echolink as a ‘watering hole’ and moving to HF when the crew is assembled is a very efficient way of making sure a quorum is there without tying up a DX frequency. But, because it is internet-based…when teotwawki happens, we won’t be able to count on unimpeded access…but RF still is RF and goes where it pleases and pleases where it goes. :)

  24. And FWIW, I’m covering 14.255 right now for a while in the background whilst cleaning up the shack if anyone wants to try a shot.

  25. At 1430 CDT I got on 14.255.0 and gave it the old college try. I thought at one point I could hear someone come back at me but I couldn’t make it out. Soft and distorted.

  26. revueltos67 says:

    Fr,

    Thanks for the gold star! Haven’t gotten one of those since grade school. :-) And jameeka, thanks for the attaboy.

    At the risk of sounding like a showoff – the other traffic on the audio clip isn’t actually from the contest, it’s a Moroccan DX station, 5E2E, working split and calling “5E2E up”. You can hear the pileup stations responding up in frequency a Khz or so and 5E2E teasing the callsigns out of the pileup then working them with the typical DXing “callsign 599”, not the NAQP contest exchange. Sounds like he works SP5IR (Poland) at 0:16 and US2LX (Ukraine) at 0:48. Neither of the EU stations are audible. As the clip ends he’s trying to complete a QSO with WK9U (WI) who can be heard.

    Whatever setup Fr. used to record the clip was good enough to hear Morocco – which is pretty good!

    73,

    Mike – ke5akl

    [Cool! You are a font of inspiration! I’ve gotta get those Morse skills stronger.]

  27. Maltese says:

    I’m a former Intelligence Officer, who held a Top Secret security clearance (not that that means anything, except I have a bit of knowledge that some may not.)

    All of the ‘conspiracy theories’ you hear about the government, FEMA, etc., are almost all untrue. Robert Gates said: “The only conspiracy theory that is, in fact true, is that the government can be blindly inept at times.”

    So, aside from a good Ham Radio, how do you prepare for what WILL eventually come (that being either a financial melt-down, or a major cyber-attack on our electrical grid system.)

    Well, you can do a few things. Being in a big city like New York or LA would be bad, really bad. But, also, being isolated on a farm in the middle of nowhere would be just as bad. A small community, far away from a major city, is ideal. Now, how do you survive? You need three things: 1) basic sustenance (shelter, plenty of food on-hand, potable water, medical supplies, clothing, a 4×4, gas, generator, and, ideally, solar power, and a motorcycle, like a KLR 650, to get-around stopped traffic, seeds), 2) weapons (a Rock River Arms .556 AR-15, a Glock 23, a .22 cal. for hunting small game, a Remington 870 shot-gun, with both slug and pellet shot, a hunting rifle, which can be used for sniping, a good bow, knives, 4th gen. night vision, a bullet-resistant vest, etc.), 3) community, and most importantly, 4) God (access to the sacraments, a compact bible and rosary in your pocket.)

  28. Maltese says:

    Well, that’s four things actually–the first three for physical survival, but the last is for spiritual survival. What matters if a man gains the world (or advantage over his neighbor), but loses his soul. That is what troubles me with some preppers–they want to survive, but selfishly so. [What an incredible judge you are… and psychic to boot!] Survival is all about helping those around you survive, and in communion with God.

  29. Bryan D. Boyle says:

    There is a good website that tracks the ISS. It will send you a note for when the ISS is going to be visible where you are.

    The ISS also does APRS.

  30. revueltos67 says:

    Fr.,

    You might be interested in Summits On The Air (SOTA).

    The basic idea – a ham, called an “activator”, hikes up to the top of a peak with radio gear, sets up and starts calling CQ. Other hams, called “chasers” listen for the activator and respond.

    There’s a website that supports all this called SOTAWatch – here:

    http://www.sotawatch.org/index.php

    An activator posts an “Alert” on SOTAWatch giving the estimated time, frequencies and modes for an activation. This gives chasers a rough idea of when, where and how (i.e. CW, SSB, etc.) to listen. The first chasers to actually hear the activator on a peak then post “Spots” with actual time and frequency. Once a spot is up a mini-pileup of chasers calling the activator usually develops quickly.

    At least that’s the theory. Nowadays activators are supported by some pretty sophisticated mechanisms for spot generation that go well beyond what I’ve described.

    Most of the hams involved do both activating and chasing. There are various ways to get points and lots of different awards/certificates/etc. available. Along with this there are online services supporting summit info/designation, mapping, QSO recording, points counts, and lots of other stuff – quite a sophisticated operation really – almost everything done by volunteers.

    SOTA began in the EU but soon spread to North America and Australia and is now starting to become popular in Asia. It’s a lot of fun, kind of addictive actually, and I’m personally very involved as both an activator and a chaser.

    73,

    Mike – ke5akl

  31. revueltos67 says: Other hams, called “chasers”

    If the seeker catches the golden snitch who wins?

    Seriously, this is pretty cool stuff. So… balancing portability and power.

  32. Fr. Bryan says:

    Brain D. Boyle. I do intend to take the extra at some point. Right now I don’t have time to study the material. I want to get it done before the question pool changes next summer. I do need to try and figure out echolink. Again, it’s a time issue. Very busy here in my parish right now with multiple things going on at once but it will eventually happen. Question: is there. Place where we can post about where we will be operating on the air everyday, besides tying up Fr. Z’s combox? Maybe if we had a forum somewhere.

  33. Fr. B: For now you can use these weekly (I hope) CQ posts.

    I too want to get that Extra before next summer.

    License by license.

  34. MWindsor says:

    Re SOTA – Activating is easy, chasing is hard.

    I’m going to activate a couple of peaks over Labor Day weekend – two or three worth 8 or 10 points each.

  35. MWindsor says:

    “Maybe if we had a forum somewhere.”

    I can make a new sub on reddit. What do you want to call it? WDTPRS Radio Guild? SSG Radio ? (Society of St. Gabriel – patron of radio workers)

  36. JonPatrick says:

    Last Monday I took the tests and passed both Technician and General so I hope to be on the air as soon as my call sign pops up in the FCC ULS database. In the meantime I ordered a Baofeng BF-F8HP not bad for only $60, works both 2m and the 440 band at up to 8W, been learning to program it via CHIRP. I hope to get into HF eventually but need to save up my $ for a rig. Antenna will be challenging as my QTH is an apartment but there is a porch outside the window where a dipole can probably be discretely placed. In the meantime I’ve been listening to the local repeater. Will have to figure out how to do this Echolink thing.

    [Congratulations!]

    Fr. Z's Gold Star Award

  37. Fr Bryan: “Brain D. Boyle. I do intend to take the extra at some point. Right now I don’t have time to study the material.”

    Brain? Thanks for the compliment :). Understand, Father. It does take a bit of heads-down time to wrap around Smith Charts, or arcana such as “If 100 IRE units correspond to the most-white level in the NTSC standard video format, what is the level of the most-black signal?” (the answer is 75 IRE, BTW, not that NTSC is really applicable anymore…).

    Besides, what can be more important than attending to the spiritual needs of your flock? All this radio stuff is fun…but only as a diversion, IMHO, from what is Really Important(tm). I look at it in the same vein as related in Scripture: even Jesus went off with his friends from time to time to enjoy healthy relaxation.

  38. MouseTemplar says:

    All this cryptoc stuff fascinates! Have begun to study for the tecnician test with hamstudyonline. It seems we have an active club just blocks from home. So much to learn.

  39. MouseTemplar says:

    Oh. Typing much too late at night. Correction: cryptic/ HamTestOnline.