Content in the TECHNICAL category

Content (e.g. blog posts, information pages, and files/links) about the activities of the RRRA Technical Committee and the equipment/systems they maintain, along with technical topics of general interest.

ARRL to Oppose Proposal to Eliminate 3.3-3.5 GHz Amateur Allocation

At its December 12 open meeting, the FCC will consider adopting a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that proposes to remove the amateur radio 9-centimeter allocation at 3.3–3.5 GHz. ARRL plans to comment in opposition to the proposed action.1

This NPRM, which threatens our use of the 24 non-shared channels on 3.4 Ghz in our RF mesh network (AREDN)—along with other Amateur Radio use of this band—is the result of the MOBILE NOW Act, reintroduced to the 115th congress by U.S. Senator John Thune (R-SD), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, on January 3, 2017, and ultimately signed into law by President Trump on March 23, 2018.

Build The Wouff Hang

An important part of hanging an antenna from a tree is a bearing, or pulley, to eliminate guy line friction and facilitate antenna repairs and adjustments.

The Wouff Hang—whimsically named after the infamous Wouff Hong from Amateur Radio history—is an easy to build bearing made from common PVC water pipe or electrical conduit found at any hardware or home supply store.

Author Roy Lewallen, W7EL, describes construction and use of The Wouff Hang in a well illustrated article which is (a free preview from the October 2019 issue of QST Magazine).

Enjoy FT8 From Almost Anywhere

Having the ability to experiment with operating your equipment in new ways is an aspect of Amateur Radio which sets our hobby apart from radio services such as CBRS, GMRS, FRS, and MURS.

In his Enjoy FT8 From Almost Anywhere article (a free preview from the August 2019 issue of QST Magazine), J. Robert Witmer, W3RW, writes:

Imagine hunting 6-meter DX at a restaurant while eating breakfast, or making an all-time new DX contact while waiting for a flight. I’ve found myself operating remotely in these types of situations, and many others, using nothing more than my smart phone. If you think this type of operating is complicated and expensive, prepare to be surprised!1

ARRL Contest and DXCC Rules Now Prohibit Fully Automated Contacts

Following the direction of the ARRL Board of Directors, ARRL has incorporated changes to the rules for all ARRL-sponsored contests and DXCC, prohibiting automated contacts. These changes also apply to the Worked All States (including Triple Play and 5-Band WAS), VHF/UHF Century Club, and Fred Fish, W5FF, Memorial awards. The changes are effective immediately.1

Tape Measure Beam Optimized for Fox Hunting

Kent KA0LDG discussed Fox Hunting (aka transmitter hunting) during the June club meeting and displayed some of the gear he uses during these activities:

Plans for home-brew antennas suitable for Fox Hunting are widely available and prebuilt antennas may be purchased from a number of vendors. Those wishing to build their own Fox Hunting antenna may wish to use the design by Joe Leggio WB2HOL described in his Tape Measure Beam Optimized for Radio Direction Finding article.