• [FOAR] The power supply connector dance contest... (8/21)

    From FOAR via rec.radio.info Admin@21:1/5 to All on Mon Jul 18 13:48:30 2022
    [continued from previous message]

    Scoring in the Portable Ops Challenge is based around four different attributes, the power you're using, the nature of your station, portable or fixed, the mode used and the number of transmitters in use.

    To achieve this, you exchange a maidenhead grid square, a combination of letters and numbers that indicates your location on earth, which is then
    used to determine how many kilometres per Watt are used to make the contact.

    If you're portable, you get a multiplier benefit in the scoring.

    Depending on the perceived difficulty of the contact, you score more
    points. In this case, SSB is harder than CW, which in turn is harder than a digital mode.

    Finally, the more transmitters you have, the less each contact is worth.
    Two transmitters, means you score half the points for each.

    With that in mind, a QRP portable station with a single transmitter calling
    CQ on SSB is the best way to make points and that is something that I'm
    always up for.

    In our adventure, we opted for a slight change, instead using FT4 and FT8, using 40 Watts, portable, on the side of a hill in a local park and during
    the four hours we were active, we managed six contacts, one over SSB, the
    rest using digital modes and we all had several goes at getting the best
    out of our station.

    Our set-up consisted of a small folding table next to my car with a
    computer, a radio and a thermos flask with hot tea to ward off the chill in
    the air. Power was supplied by an 80 AH battery. The radio was an Icom
    IC-7300 that Randall brought along.

    The antenna we used was a Terlin Outbacker, multi-tap whip that was
    attached to my car with a 12m counterpoise run along the gutter.

    None of us had ever seen such excellent conditions with such a low noise
    floor in the middle of the city. We were enjoying the last warm sun of the
    day from Kings Park in Perth, Western Australia. It's a 990 acre park,
    larger than Central Park in New York, set aside for public use in 1831 and gazetted as a public park in 1872. The park is open 24 hours a day and
    features a botanic garden with thousands of species of Western Australia's native flora and fauna, overlooks the central business district, the Swan
    River and the Darling Ranges and best of all, there's no radio noise. It
    did get chilly towards the end, but I'm pretty sure we all went home with
    all our fingers and toes intact.

    Jishnu also brought along his FT-817 and a tiny multi-tap telescopic whip
    that we strapped to a nearby steel rubbish bin and using that set-up was
    able to detect and transmit WSPR signals across the globe as part of experimentation with his station.

    One of the unexpected benefits of not yelling CQ into a microphone
    ad-nauseam was that we were able to continue our conversation, hearing
    stories from each other and enjoying hot pizza when dinnertime came around without needing to stuff food into the same place where CQ calls were
    intended to originate.

    My car isn't quite ready to go completely portable, but this little outing again proved to me that portable vehicle based operation has a charm all
    its own and the Fox Mike Hotel Portable Operations Challenge is going to be
    on my dance card next time it comes around!

    When was the last time you left your shack and went portable?

    I'm Onno VK6FLAB
    This posting includes a media file: http://podcasts.itmaze.com.au/foundations/20210912.foundations-of-amateur-radio.mp3

    What's in a sound?

    Posted: 04 Sep 2021 09:00 AM PDT

    Foundations of Amateur Radio

    Over the past few weeks I've been having my hearing tested. I've had the opportunity to discuss sound in some detail with an audiologist. Today as a result of a collision between a jar of chilli pickles and a tiled floor
    I've come to the realisation that sound is important in unexpected ways.

    It will probably not come as a surprise to you that sound has an emotional component. Just think of a particular song, or a voice, or something that you've heard previously. The sound of a jack-hammer, or a bell, a horse or
    a jet, each completely different, impact on your mood. Some sounds are pleasant, others jarring. Some make you feel happy, others make you anxious
    or even angry.

    For some time now I've observed in myself that there are times when I
    cannot stand sound and other times when I invite it into my life.

    For example, if there's a HF radio going in the background and I'm
    attempting to have a conversation with a person in the shack, the sound
    coming from the radio causes irritation, to the point of needing to turn it
    off in order to actually hold a conversation. On the other hand, if there's
    a contest on, I can sit, happy as a clam, listening to HF all day and
    night, working out what station is calling, and making contact.

    I'm raising this because it occurs to me that amateur radio is unlike
    broadcast radio where you're expected to actively monitor what is being transmitted. In my experience as a radio broadcaster you're talking into a microphone and the headphones you're wearing are connected to a radio
    receiver which is tuned to the station on which you're broadcasting. This
    gives you immediate live feedback on the state of your audio levels.

    As an aside, I once witnessed a fellow broadcaster who didn't feel the need
    to wear headphones. They were blissfully unaware that their voice was being transmitted into silence because the audio fader on their microphone was

    In amateur radio however, we don't often do such things. We transmit blind
    most if not all of the time. It's rare that we even hear our own voice
    on-air, let alone hear it in real time. If that's not enough, using
    sideband, it's easy to modify the sound of a person by changing the
    frequency slightly, making their voice either higher or lower, just by adjusting the dial.

    It occurred to me that how your voice is perceived by the other station
    assists in how that station can hear you and make contact.

    Using the local repeater is a good but subtle example. If you've listened
    for a while, you might have observed that there are stations that are easy
    to understand and others that are not. Sometimes that comes down to
    individual accents, but in my experience a much larger impact is caused by
    the actual transmission itself.

    Is the microphone gain set correctly, is there any filtering in play, is
    the station on the correct frequency, is the transmitter using the correct
    mode and other more subtle things like background noise, speaking volume
    and distance and direction in relation to the microphone.

    We often talk about less being more and you already know that I'm a big fan
    of low power or QRP operation. Making contacts is absolutely about using
    the right antenna, the right mode, the correct band and time of day, but
    the sound coming from your station is just as important.

    If you have the ability to use two radios simultaneously, then I'd
    recommend that you find a way to either use a local repeater, or a
    cross-band repeater, or even a remote web-based radio, to hear what you actually sound like on-air, live, and experiment with the various settings
    on your radio in order to test and improve the quality of your voice.

    Whilst we as radio amateurs don't standardise our signals, though
    personally I think it would be a great idea, there's plenty of improvement
    to be had by taking some time out of your next on-air activity to have a
    long hard listen to yourself.

    I'm Onno VK6FLAB
    This posting includes a media file: http://podcasts.itmaze.com.au/foundations/20210905.foundations-of-amateur-radio.mp3

    Taking your shack mobile

    Posted: 28 Aug 2021 09:00 AM PDT

    Foundations of Amateur Radio

    When I first started in this hobby I found myself surrounded by other
    amateurs who all seemed to have a spare room in their house, or a spare building near their house, or even a property somewhere, dedicated to
    amateur radio. There was an endless parade of equipment, antennas, tools, workshops, spare parts and the like. Frankly it was overwhelming.

    A decade on, I have some perspective to share on that first exposure. For
    me the hobby was brand new. I didn't have a family history, there were no amateur friends I'd grown up with, no electronics uncle or anything even remotely resembling any of that. What I was exposed to wasn't a new thing,
    it represented something that had been going on for years, decades and lifetimes even.

    It quickly became apparent that having a shack was desirable, but in my
    case, at the time, unobtainable, so instead I did the next best thing I
    could think of. I built a shack in my car. That was a journey that took
    several years to make. At the end of it, I removed my radio from the car
    and moved it onto a spare table in my office.

    I have spent countless enjoyable and sometimes frustrating hours in my car shack and I learnt that it's almost always temporary. If you're not the exclusive user of the car, then your shack isn't always available and in
    that case it also needs to be family friendly, as-in, no cables, mounts, brackets and the like that can cause damage to a person, or the equipment.
    This limits the options you have.

    At the end of my car journey, I had a spare battery in the back, the radio
    and tuner were mounted under the floor next to the spare tyre, there was an antenna mount attached to the car, there was braiding throughout the car, connecting all the body panels together and the remote control head was detachable from a suction mount that doubled as a mobile phone holder. Antennas, one for HF, one for VHF were stowed against the roof lining with
    a strap around the roof hand grab of the rear passenger. An external
    speaker was mounted below the head rest of the centre rear passenger.

    What I learnt was that this setup was good for short stints, for mobile operation, for contests on the run and for working DX at lunch time at the beach. Trying to do digital modes, attempting to work a pile-up, or doing several other activities I love were not really feasible and as a result I decided to pull it all out.

    At this point all that remains in the car are the braiding, the control
    lead, the speaker, the coax and the antenna mount. I plan to rebuild my car shack in the not too distant future. More on that in a moment.

    I moved house and found myself in an office that was perfect for multiple reasons. It was separate from the rest of the living space, so I didn't
    need to put away stuff. It was big enough to house a dedicated radio table
    and it's got pretty simple access to the outside world for running coax. It gives me a dedicated place to do radio and have stuff set-up permanently.

    I noticed one thing after having this available.

    I didn't actually get on-air any more than when I was using my car shack.
    If anything it's less. I think it's because it's also my office and I
    already spend plenty of time doing office activities that playing radio
    isn't all that different. I'm going to keep my set-up, but I'm going to go
    back to my roots and add a radio back into my car.

    It's still a family car, so I need to consider the other uses that it's put
    to, but I think I can make it work. I recently installed an 80 Amp Hour
    battery with an automatic charging circuit. It was put there to power the dash-cams, but it was scaled with amateur radio in mind.

    I don't yet know which radio I'm going to put into the car, I really do
    like my FT-857d, but there are other options available to me, so I'm going
    to experiment.

    One fundamental change I'm going to make is that the radio will be
    installed in such a way that it can be easily unplugged and removed. Not because I want to remove it from the car, but because I want to be able to
    go even lighter, take the radio onto the beach, or into a park or up a
    summit. I'll likely bolt the whole lot into a Pelican case and make it a
    mobile go-unit that happens to live in my car.

    I don't think I'll add digital functionality at first, but I'm eyeing off
    the idea of dedicating an old mobile phone, which is essentially a
    computer, screen, battery and internet connection in one to the task, but
    I'll let you know how that goes.

    What I do know, with hindsight, is that less is more.

    I'm Onno VK6FLAB
    This posting includes a media file: http://podcasts.itmaze.com.au/foundations/20210829.foundations-of-amateur-radio.mp3

    What's in a unit?

    Posted: 21 Aug 2021 09:00 AM PDT

    Foundations of Amateur Radio

    In our hobby we use kilohertz and megahertz enthusiastically. Sometimes
    even gigahertz. The other day during a discussion the question arose, what comes after tera, as in terahertz? I couldn't remember, so I had to look it
    up, peta comes next, then exa, zetta and yotta, derived from the Greek word
    for eight.

    That in and of itself was interesting, but it turns out that Greek isn't
    the only language used in attributing SI metric prefixes, SI being the International System of Units. Of the 20 units, which I'll get to in a
    moment, there's 12 with Greek origins, five deriving from Latin, two from Danish and one from Spanish.

    The units are used to describe how many of a thing there are in base-10,
    so, a thousand of something is kilo, or ten to the power of three, which
    gives us kilohertz. A gigahertz is ten to the power of nine and so-on. Interestingly, kilo is derived from the Greek word thousand, but mega comes from the Greek for great. Both hecto, as in hectopascals and deca as in decathlon originate in the Greek words for hundred and ten. The prefix
    pico, as in picofarad comes from the Spanish word peak and femto as in femtowatt comes from the Danish for fifteen, as in ten to the power of
    minus 15. Apparently a zeptomole of a substance contains 602 particles,
    even NASA says so, let me know if you can find a source for that.

    I could devote my entire discussion on these 20 units, adding for example
    that their naming wasn't all done at the same time, the most recent
    additions are yotta and yocto, as I said, derived from the Greek for eight, being ten to the power of 24. How's that eight you ask? Well, three times
    eight is 24. I'm not saying it's intuitive, but there is logic.

    In looking at all these units, and specifically the smaller ones, milli,
    micro, nano, pico and the like, it occurred to me, is there a way to go
    below one Hertz, could you have half a Hertz?

    Hertz is the number of oscillations per second, a single Hertz being one
    per second. Half a Hertz would be one oscillation per two seconds. I
    started wondering what to look for in discovering if anyone has been
    playing with this. For the life of me, I couldn't think of what to search
    for and my experience tells me that if you cannot find the answer online, you're asking the wrong question.

    This morning, with a fresh cup of coffee in my hands, it occurred to me
    that anyone doing this kind of stuff would be using SI units, so they'd be using decihertz, centihertz, millihertz, microhertz and nanohertz, perhaps
    even picohertz. So I went searching.

    Turns out that this actually exists. After wading through endless results
    with conversion tools and dictionaries, there's plenty of research to find.

    The unit decihertz is being used in gravitational wave interferometry, specifically, there's a Japanese, space-based gravitational wave
    observatory in the works with hopes of launching their three space craft if they can find funding.

    It doesn't end there.

    There are experimental imaging studies being made on malignant and benign
    human cancer cells and tissues looking at decihertz all the way down to yoctohertz, that's ten to the minus 24.

    Inside Apple software development documentation, in addition to mega, giga
    and terahertz you can find links to milli, micro and nanohertz as
    predefined units.

    NANOGrav stands for North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves and it uses the Galaxy to detect them. It was founded in 2007 and is
    part of a global community of scientists in places like Australia, where
    the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array is located - yes, that Parkes - made famous
    from the film "the Dish" and Europe with the European Pulsar Timing Array, combining five separate radio-telescopes, all coming together under the
    banner of the IPTA or International Pulsar Timing Array.

    The point of my little exploration is that if you're curious about random things, you can often come across activities and ideas you know nothing
    about and learn something along the way.

    Today I learnt that there is such a thing as a sub-Hertz signal, it's being explored all over the globe with scientists in different fields and it's happening without much in the way of public awareness.

    What did you learn today and which SI prefix didn't I use?

    I'm Onno VK6FLAB
    This posting includes a media file: http://podcasts.itmaze.com.au/foundations/20210822.foundations-of-amateur-radio.mp3

    Being an equipment custodian

    Posted: 14 Aug 2021 09:00 AM PDT

    Foundations of Amateur Radio

    A couple of weeks ago an amateur put out a call on the local email
    discussion list. The message was simple, it read: "I have a 606A HP Signal Generator with a copy of the Operating and Service Manual. It covers 50 kHz
    to 65 MHz. Free to a good home :-)"

    It's not the first time that such a message has done the rounds, but this
    time my reply was quick enough for it to be first. Overnight I became the
    new custodian of a Hewlett Packard 606A Signal Generator.

    A signal generator is a tool that can form a specific carrier across a
    range of frequencies in much the same way that your amateur radio can. In
    this case, the HP-606A can cover all the amateur HF bands and everything in between. The signal that's generated is calibrated, that is, it's of a
    specific power level, very stable, clean and it can be used to calibrate
    other equipment.

    To set the scene, the HP-606A was released into the wild in 1959. You might call it vintage at this point. It's the size of a modern microwave oven, so I'll need to set aside some bench space in order to actually use it.
    According to some it's "the best analogue signal generator ever built".
    It's been in production for decades, with plenty of information to be found online.

    Unlike most modern gear, this equipment comes fully documented by the manufacturer, to the point of user manual revisions depending on the serial number and including essentials like circuit diagrams, parts list, spare
    parts list, calibration instructions and the equipment needed, how to open
    it up, tests to conduct after repair, how to conduct regular maintenance
    and how to replace the tubes in it.

    Yes, I did say tubes, or valves, or glow in the dark electronics.

    At this point I've not yet switched it on. You might wonder why that's the case. This unit has internal voltages exceeding 500 Volt DC, so some care
    is required. Inside are at least four electrolytic capacitors. Think of
    each of them as two pieces of aluminium sandwiched together, separated by a piece of foil and electrolytic paste, all rolled up into a cylinder.

    When an electrolytic capacitor is built, the process to convert these components into an actual capacitor involves forming it, which means that
    the manufacturer applies a specific voltage to the pins of the capacitor
    and in doing so, causes a chemical reaction which makes all manner of funky stuff happen, including unidirectional conductance, something you're
    looking for in a capacitor.

    Over time, when not in use, or in my case, in storage, this chemical
    reaction reverses and the capacitors are back to rolled up aluminium with
    some foil in between. Powering it up in this state will let the smoke out.

    It turns out that in many cases you can apply the voltage again and reform
    the capacitor. Apparently, according to the author of Tu-Be Or Not Tu-Be Modification Manual by H.I. Eisenson, applying the voltage for five minutes plus one minute per month of storage does the trick. In my case, I can
    leave the capacitors in circuit and apply the voltage externally using a Variac, a Variable AC Transformer, loaned to me by Denis VK6AKR.

    Doing the math is a little tricky, since we don't really know when the unit
    was last powered up, but we're told that it was some time in the last
    decade, so a couple of hours should suffice, but there are some wrinkles in relation to voltage and managing the step to powering up the tubes, so when I've made it happen, I'll let you know.

    Denis was kind enough to help with opening up the cabinet and having a
    look-see inside. We noticed that it has previously been expertly repaired
    with a few replaced components and Denis managed to identify some likely
    failed tubes, so we're on the scrounge for those. Together we did some
    initial tests and ran up the unit using low voltage to determine if the
    various test points were actually showing the proportional voltages that
    were expected. This isn't like a digital circuit where it either works or
    not, using a Variac, you can slowly power this up, to a point, and test
    along the way.

    This brings us to the provenance of this tool.

    I got it from Dave VK6AI and from discussion, we think it came from the
    estate of Don VK6HK, now silent key. I've met Don's widow who happens to be
    the neighbour of a friend, so at some point when I have it working I might
    give her a call. I don't know who owned it before Don. I do know that when
    it was released, in 1959, it was sold for $1540 US Dollars, the equivalent
    of $14,000 in today's money, or half a car back then.

    Based on serial numbers, this HP-606A appears to have been manufactured
    between October 1961 and August 1966, so it's older than I am. In case you
    have extra information, the serial number is 009-01180 and my email address
    is cq@vk6flab.com. If you have spare valves, a 12B4A is high on the list,
    get in touch.

    While Denis and I were exploring inside the guts of this function
    generator, we were at the clubhouse of the local WA VHF Group, surrounded
    by other amateurs who were doing their own thing. At one point I looked up
    and noticed two amateurs in deep discussion about using a piece of
    software, CHIRP, to program a handheld radio on a Windows 10 laptop, whilst
    I was sitting across the table, picking through the guts of a 1960's piece
    of equipment. It made me smile, thinking about the history that those two extremes represented.

    Becoming the custodian for such a significant piece of equipment isn't for everyone. I've been given suggestions to toss it out and buy something
    modern, but I have to confess, even though I'm software personified, SDR to
    the core, well, aiming to be, this piece of equipment does something for me.

    What equipment do you own that makes you go all misty eyed?

    I'm Onno VK6FLAB
    This posting includes a media file: http://podcasts.itmaze.com.au/foundations/20210815.foundations-of-amateur-radio.mp3

    All the things that aren't amateur radio...

    Posted: 07 Aug 2021 09:00 AM PDT

    Foundations of Amateur Radio

    Recently I illustrated the diversity of our community by highlighting
    social media posts made to a single community over a 24 hour period. Each reflecting a different aspect of our community.

    It occurred to me that although those things are amateur radio, some more obviously than others, there's a whole other side of the community that
    isn't amateur radio.

    Look at radio astronomy for example. One of my friends is an astronomer and we've been having loads of fun learning from each other. I'm getting
    exposed to concepts like Fourier transforms, interferometry, sampling and plenty of the mathematical concepts that underlie my interest in amateur

    Then there's things like physics. While I've always been interested, long before I met my physics teacher in high-school who helped me kick off a
    career in computing, I've been playing with light bulbs, batteries, disassembling old hardware like the valve radio that I was given when I was about twelve or so.

    There's the continued curiosity about audio. I've been making mix-tapes
    since I was nine, and that has blossomed into an ongoing interest in audio production, some of which is reflected in my weekly podcast and fuelled by
    my hearing loss.

    My interests outside amateur radio have always been wide and varied. I've learnt to fly an aeroplane, learnt to navigate a sailboat, learnt to drive
    a truck, installed satellite dishes in the bush and built a mobile
    satellite ground station, built software solutions for piggeries and
    bakeries, provided logistics for remote outback events, built vehicle
    mounted GPS tracking and mapping solutions and I continue to read articles
    as they come my way.

    What amateur radio has given me is a context, a framework if you like to
    bring together these wide ranging fields and make them hang together.

    An obvious, though simple example, is learning the phonetic alphabet. In amateur radio it's a given that you'll need to learn that so you can effectively communicate using a poor signal path, but my phonetic learning predates my amateur radio exposure by at least a dozen years. In order to
    pass my aviation radio certificate, I was required to learn the phonetic alphabet before I was allowed to use the radio.

    It's only a small example, but it's illustrative on how, for me at least, amateur radio is the glue that binds it all together.

    It happens at other levels too. I've mentioned in the past that looking at
    a television antenna on the roof of any house before getting a license was
    a non-event. Today I can't look without thinking about propagation, how the antenna is aligned and if it's installed back-to-front or not. Once you
    know a thing, it's hard to un-see, or unlearn the background of it.

    The same happens when I spot an antenna in the wild, stuck to a lamppost,
    or bolted to a random roadside cabinet. Previously they would go
    unremarked, today I wonder what information they're transmitting or
    receiving, what band they're operating on, who owns the equipment and what interference they might be causing or experiencing in their environment.

    I have a growing interest in computer controlled manufacturing like 3D printing, laser engraving and CNC and spend some of the available time in
    the day learning about how that works, how to improve things and I wonder
    about how the speed of communications between the various components create
    an RF field of some sort and what that does to other components and

    As a final experience, recently I had a medical procedure where there was a notice supplied with the logging hardware that specifically called out
    amateur radio as a source of electromagnetic radiation and that I was
    required to refrain during the process due to a potential failure of the equipment. If anything, for the first time in a long time, I felt that
    there was a visible link between my hobby and the rest of the community,
    since that notice was given to every single person, not just the radio amateurs.

    Some links between amateur radio and the rest of the world are visible and
    some are not. What kinds of interactions between the hobby and society at
    large have you come across?

    I'm Onno VK6FLAB
    This posting includes a media file: http://podcasts.itmaze.com.au/foundations/20210808.foundations-of-amateur-radio.mp3

    The diversity of our hobby is breathtaking.

    Posted: 31 Jul 2021 09:00 AM PDT

    Foundations of Amateur Radio

    You've heard me say that amateur radio is a thousand hobbies in one. It's
    not my idea, but it speaks to me in ways that are hard to articulate. Today
    I found a way that might give you an inkling just how vast this community

    One place where our community gathers is on-air, but it's not the only
    place. There are clubs, websites, email lists, video channels and other
    outlets all catering for different amateur radio users and their interests.
    One such place is the social media site Reddit. In the so-called
    amateurradio sub with currently over 88 thousand members, there is a lively community discussing many of the different aspects of our hobby.

    Over the past 24 hours, 23 posts were made in that single community.

    "Thanks, K-2722 hunters", was a photo about activating Carolina Beach State Park, as part of an activity called Parks on the Air, or POTA. To
    participate you can either go to a park, set-up your station and make
    contacts, or you can stay at home and listen out for people who are doing

    "It's not high-high, it's hee-hee", a meme around the sound that the Morse
    Code generates when you send the letter H followed by the letter I,
    commonly considered laughter.

    "Why don't scanners have FM radio?", a discussion around the perceived lack
    of FM mode on scanners.

    "Help with TYT MD-380 CPS", a question from an amateur who purchased a new radio and is looking for software to program it.

    "Portable on the Space Coast. QRP on a speaker wire antenna.", a video of
    an amateur making an activation in Florida and showing off their set-up.

    "Could not hit DMR repeater", an amateur sharing that they figured out that they couldn't hit a repeater because they had their radio set to low power
    and wanted to share that with the community.

    "Antenna advice part 2", asking about how to set-up antennas for dual use,
    how to amplify the signal, use rotators and what kind of coax to use.

    "ISS SSTV Aug 6-7 145.800 MHz FM", linking to a news item announcing slow
    scan television coming from the International Space station in August.

    "FT-3DR APRS message question", exploring the specifics on how Automatic
    Packet Reporting System or APRS messages are sent. Think of it as global distributed SMS via amateur radio.

    "Is it okay to leave a handheld radio on while it's on its battery charger 24/7?", with answers to the question that's puzzling one owner of a radio.

    "Extra test question", asking about how to learn for the test and wondering
    if the techniques needed are different when compared with obtaining
    the "tech" exam.

    "Just got my first radio! Now to prep for the test, but first a question
    about saving time after I pass it...", asking about how to register before
    the test to speed things along.

    And that's just over half way there.

    "Maldol TMH-21 / TMH-71 handhelds - any info?", asking about a new to them radio from around 2007.

    "2021 Berryville, VA (US) Hamfest - any reddit community members going?", looking for others going to the first hamfest in their region for a long

    "CB Radio is Going FM! Why is the FCC Doing It?", linking to a video that discusses the changes on how CB radio is getting another mode.

    "What is the 'right' way to learn morse?", the age-old question, one that
    I'm still am working through.

    "Sidetone distorted on QCX mini? How do I fix this? It gets better or worse when I move the radio around, but the problem doesn't go away. Anyone
    else's QCX do this?", with a video showing the issue.

    "Aluminium roof trim + HF dipole", with a question on what kind of effects might happen as a result of the combination of the two.

    "Never owned a Radio be for please help lol. I got 2 of these on the way
    any tips for beginners? [sic]", excited new owner looking for advice.

    "I finally got my qsl cards printed!", with pictures to show the artistic prowess involved.

    "Legality of transmitting digital data over FM audio", asking about the specifics on how data may or may not be transmitted in the United States.

    "It's no pie plate on a kayak, but you gotta work with what you have,
    right?", showing off a frying pan as a magnetic base. If it works, it's not silly at all.

    "Very New Here", asking about how to explore radio waves.

    Those 23 different posts are all about amateur radio, from one single community, on one day. Each post from someone finding their way in the community, discussing something that's important to them, sharing their

    [continued in next message]

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