On January 3, 2019, K7UV started a discussion in the Amateur Radio sub-reddit about a report by K7RA—in the first ARRL Propagation Bulletin for 2020—about indications that Solar Cycle 25 has begun; good news for DXers and other Amateur Radio Operators who rely on the effects of sunspots for propagation.
Developments that spelled the end of ham radio (as pronounced by pessimists of the time, limited mostly to the US):
On December 17, 2019, the ARRL website reported in an article titled “FCC Formally Adopts Proposals to Remove Amateur 3-GHz Band, Invites Comments":
At its December 12 meeting, the FCC formally adopted a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in WT Docket 19-348 and invited comments on its plan to remove “existing non-federal secondary radiolocation and amateur allocations” in the 3.3 - 3.55 GHz band and relocate incumbent non-federal operations. The FCC said it’s seeking comment on appropriate “transition mechanisms” to make that happen. ARRL has indicated that it will file comments in opposition to the proposal.1
This action by the FCC signals their intent to proceed with reallocation of frequency spectrum in compliance with the MOBILE NOW act which states “the Commission shall make available a total of at least 255 megahertz of Federal and non-Federal spectrum below the frequency of 6000 megahertz for mobile and fixed wireless broadband use”2 and, in Sec. 5.3(a), specifically requires review of the 3.1–3.55 GHz band for reallocation.
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.
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).