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THE FIRST CLASS C.W. OPERATORS’ CLUB NEWS SHEET 615 (http://www.firstclasscw.org.uk) Editor: G4BUE January 2001 “A man should keep his friendship in constant repair” - Samuel Johnson (1755) (3525, 7025, 10120-10125, 14025, 18080-18085, 21025, 24905-24910 and 28025kHz) BANDS OF THE MONTH FOR JANUARY ARE 160 & 20 METRES Happy New Year. A perfect time to reflect for a moment on how we might be able to help improve the world. In recent months we have debated in this column some important issue
  THE FIRST CLASS C.W. OPERATORS’ CLUB “A man should keep his friendship in constant repair” - Samuel Johnson (1755) (3525, 7025, 10120-10125, 14025, 18080-18085, 21025, 24905-24910 and 28025kHz) BANDS OF THE MONTH FOR JANUARY ARE 160 & 20 METRES Editor: G4BUE January 2001 ( http://www.firstclasscw.org.uk ) NEWS SHEET 615 Happy New Year. A perfect time to reflectfor a moment on how we might be able tohelp improve the world.In recent months we have debated in thiscolumn some important issues that affectFOC. That debate continues. Meantime,there are many important issues which af-fect us all but which are not specifically FOCissues. This fine Club of ours contains manyexcellent brains and much experience. We,as an organisation, are well-positioned to con-tribute meaningfully to the issues of the daywhich affect HF. We have previously contrib-uted to the  Future of Amateur Radio enquiryand expressed views about CW as a licensing requirement. Here are one or two other is-sues that are very relevant to us and that wemight think about: Spectrum protection: we are so used toexclusive access to our bands that we are per-haps these days becoming a little complacent.Have you noticed, with the higher sun spots, just how polluted our bands are nowadays?It used to be just CBers on 28005kHz but nowthere are all manner of illegal noises every-where. It occurs to me that with DX-Clusterand Internet e-mail we have the means toinstantly communicate information aboutIntruders. But to whom? What little I knowof the official Intruder-Watch system (in UK anyway) suggests that official channels mustbe followed and they are slow. The system isthereby restricted to long-term Intruders.But what happens when a broadcast stationis emitting spurious harmonics? Radio Por-tugal had one right in the middle of the 17metre band. It eventually went away but onlyafter causing a lot of QRM for some weekslast year. What is needed is more instant re-action. If our ‘authorities’ could establishappropriate channels then there is a ready-made source of instant information from alarge population of educated HF band users.If a really simple reporting system were in-troduced there could be many, many volun-teers to help. National societies: spectrum is absolutelyour most valuable resource. Without it weare dead in the water. National societies andIARU are utterly crucial here. Wheneversomeone tells me that they are not a mem-ber because of some specific ‘political’ issue,I ask whether they would care about loss of our bands. At best many of our national so-cieties have about one half of licensed radioamateurs as members. Should we not workto increase that proportion? Beacons: the most fascinating thing aboutour hobby is the unpredictability of HFpropagation. NCDXF have invested enor-mously in time, effort and money to create aworld-wide network of beacons on each of thefive HF bands (see page 51 of FOCUS 23 and page 44 of FOCUS 31 - G4BUE). They seemto be under-utilised. DXers use them onlyinfrequently so ‘pay-back’ is less than itmight be. Maybe we all just love theunpredictability of switching on and notknowing what will be heard. Check out acomputer-program called  BeaconSee . Thereis potential here for a massive research-project with so much information availableand free to all. Do  you know the NCDXF-bea-con frequencies? Contest co-ordination: perhaps it is na-tional pride which hinders collaboration. Wouldn’t it be good (for contesters and non-contesters alike) if some contests were com-bined? It seems that every country must haveits own contest these days. A small handfulof contest-fanatics can be worked in all of them. Let’s combine some of these every-body-works-everybody national events in toone weekend. And how about one world-wideField-Day weekend? Contest co-ordinationefforts by IARU seem to be only marginallysuccessful in these directions. TOPICAL ISSUES by G3SXW  MEMBERSHIP INFORMATION by G3MXJ Starred List There are several internal issues facing FOC just now and these are being addressed.But FOC could be more than just a self-serv-ing group. We are a tight-knit group of ex-perts who can contribute hugely to the goodof the hobby. If we choose to. Should we,through FOC, address issues such as theseand seek to improve our HF world? Or,should we concentrate only on our own in-ternal interests? Please let me know. Whichimportant issues, if any, do you think FOCmight address? EDITORIAL by G4BUE  A Happy New Year to all of you and yourfamilies from June and me. I wonder what2001 will bring for FOC? G3MXJ describedareas of possible change in last month’s Topi- cal Comments column and I look forward totrying to reach a consensus in Committee onthe way forward for the areas of members’concern that Dennis identified. It will notbe easy, and sadly not every member willagree with the outcome, but I would like toreassure members that (as Dennis said) theCommittee will be working hard in the com-ing months to resolve these areas of concern. June and I stayed in Florida for three weeksin December with N4TO and both of us hadthe opportunity to operate Vic’s wonderfulstation. June made her first ever QSOs andfound the 15 metre USA Novice band idealfor her slower CW. It shows how busy we hadbeen at home before leaving for Florida that June made her first ever QSOs as W4/ MØBUE instead of from home as MØBUE!Those QSOs included one with W4/VP2MTfrom W4/VA3CH’s QTH. June has since beenon the air from home and is determined totry and make at least one CW QSO each dayto try and build her speed up. Vic, June and I entered the ARRL 10 Me-ter Contest as N4TO (multi-single) and Junemade 1300 SSB QSOs while Vic and I made1200 CW QSOs. Just for interest I kept a listof the FOC members who Vic and I QSO’don CW and at the end we were amazed to findwe had worked 87 members, possibly morewith contest callsigns that we did not recog-nise. Considering the contest was held on just ten metres, we thought this a very highnumber, suggesting that FOC members gen-erally support contests although they may notbe contesters themselves. This is supportedby a comment from NP3G, who worked over100 members in the same contest, and toldme, “Several of us were serious about thecontest, most were looking for Windle pointsor Y2K Award points. Others were looking for new band countries or simply just wantedto say ‘hello’ and help with a QSO”. 3. G4BWP: G3HEJ, G3SWH, G3SXW, KC7V, 5B4AGC(+GW3YDX). 3. DF5JT: K4EWG, DL4CF, K1JD, W8XM, SM5COP, N9RD,DK8IT, GM3UA. 3. OK1RP: OK1RR, W4PM, GØEBW, W4ZYT, G8VG, K1SS,W3NZ 1. DK4AN: DJ5ZN, DL4CF, DL7AKC, KL7HF, W1HMD, DK8IT,G3MCK, SV1AOW 1. K4WJ: K4EFZ, K2UFT, YV1NX, W1HMD, F5VEX, GW3HCL Objections to VK4EMM and K1VR are un-der consideration by the Committee.Invitations will be sent to SM6CLU and V31JP. Additional Nominations 5. N6TR: VK6VZ, K4OJ, 4X4NJ, VE7BS 5. G3ZGC: G3RVM, GØORH. 3. VE3HX: VA3LK, K5DQ, N6NT. 3. K6LQA: K6TS, K1AJ, W4LZ, W1RAN. 3. K4UEE: W4ZYT, W1RAN. 3. VE3OU: K2UFT, K4AO. 3. W6JD: W6CYX. 2. K3TF: N2UU, W1OT. 1. VE3VA: DK8IT. 1. KP3R: KP4L. 1. LU6EF: K4EWG. 1. G3ORH: K4EWG. 1. OZ7UW: K4EWG 1. K2KQ: W1WEF. 1. OE3GSA: ZS6AL, ZS6QU. New Members 1741 KY7M: (Lee) L. M. Finkel, 1011 W Las Palmaritas Dr., Phoenix, AZ 85021; XYL- Debby; tel - 602 371 8563; e-mail -<ky7m@arrl. net>. 1742 WØCGR: (Gary) J. G. Atkins, 2201Rambouillet Dr., Ft Collins, CO 80526; XYL- Lorene (WBØVVD); tel - 970 493 9368; e-mail - <gatkins@lamar.colostate.edu>. Amendments G3VCN (1647) Resigned. EI5BW  (1651) Resigned. NP3G (1397) Resigned. VK3MJ (1061) Resigned.The Florida Dinner was the best yet - 74attended making it the second biggest FOCsocial event of 2000. Only Lords had moreattendees but if the Florida Dinner contin-ues to grow, as it has done in the last few years, then it is not going to be long before itovertakes Lords. Congratulations and thanksto K4EFZ and his team of organisers.I remember attending my first Florida Din-ner in 1992 when everyone agreed that oneof the main attractions was its  small friendlyatmosphere. The 2000 Dinner had a large friendly atmosphere and I know the organis-ers and several regular attendees are won-dering how to deal with the ‘nice’ problem of the Dinner continuing to grow each year!  DRAKE FANS by G3NKS  John Loughmiller, KB9AT, has written andpublished  A Family Affair - The R.L. DrakeStory which has received rave reviews on theDrake Internet Reflector. It contains not onlythe story of the R L Drake company, but alsouseful service hints and tips, and suggestedmodifications, mainly for the TR4, R4/T4 andTR7 series of equipment.In North America the book can be orderedon the Internet at <http://home/fuse.net/ tsg> and elsewhere from the Universal Ra-dio in Columbus, Ohio, USA at <http:// www.universal-radio.com>, telephone 614866 4267, who take credit cards and ship in-ternationally. The book weights 1kg and costs$29.95. Shipping to the UK is a further $19.I have a copy. As the owner of several piecesof Drake equipment, I have found it a fasci-nating read and a valuable work of reference.To be recommended. ELECTRONIC SUBMISSION OF WINDLEAND MARATHON LOGS by G3WGV Starting in January 2001, members cansubmit their logs electronically, via e-mail, forboth the Marathon and Windle Award.The log format is identical for both and com-prises a Tab Separated Variable log file.Cover sheets are still required for both eventsand will initially be in Excel spread-sheet for-mat. The tick sheets are not required as partof the electronic submission.Full details of the log format, together withblank Excel spread-sheets will be availablefrom 7 January 2001 in the FOC members’database area, at <www.egroups.com/files/ foc_ng>.Technical queries should be submitted tome, via e-mail at <g3wgv@aol.com>. Elec-tronic logs for the Windle Award should besent to GW3KGV <ken@gw3kgv.freeserve.co.uk> and those for the Marathon to G3LIK <g3lik@dormic.freeserve.co.uk>. THE N2DAN PADDLES by W1HMD Terry Nurkiewicz, Widow of Steve, N2DAN,wishes to sell Steve’s personal paddle and hasasked me to assist her. She would like tospread the word throughout the amateurcommunity, however, I thought it would bebetter, and she has agreed, to let the FOCmembership have first crack at it. The pad-dle is a chrome model, serial number 0001,dated 4/68 with the N2DAN call engraved it.Finger tips are gold/green/white. Terry, of course, is looking for the best price and per-haps there are a few collectors and/or clubmembers who would be interested in this pad-dle. If anyone is interested please call Terrydirect at (941) 743 3139. MARATHON by G4BUE Please make the following amendments to your tick-sheets for the 2001 Marathon.G3XAQ will be QRV as 9G5XA.G4PDQ will be QRV as 5B4/G4PDQ. Y2K EXTENDED? by G2FFO  We have now reached the last month of the20th Century and the 2nd Millennium AD.It is only members of The Flat Earth Societyand those of similar ilk who still truly believethat the Year 2000 marks the beginning of new ones. Although the FOC Committee have made adecision not to carry the Y2K Award schemeover into 2001, there is surely no reason whymembers should not continue to do so, butpurely on an unofficial basis without seek-ing any reward apart from the satisfaction of adding spice to the Windle award. With thisin mind I have more or less made a decision,unilaterally, to proceed with operating in2001, keeping a log to show points gained onthe basis of the rules so ingeniously devisedfor the FOC Y2K Award. My aim will be toscore 2001 points during the year. As I havepointed out, 2001 will be an extra special yearand I feel it would be a shame for FOC mem-bers not to make some effort to commemo-rate it.In News Sheet 613, John, G3LWI, quiterightly pointed out that the increased activ-ity during 2000 was largely due to the Y2K programme and I would be surprised if myproposal did not generate similar levels of activity during what will be, after all, the trueMillennium year.I wonder how many more FOCers would beinterested in marking the year on the basisof my suggestion? OK1RR and W5ZR have both written soft-ware for maintaining Y2K records - G4BUE . 2001 WEST COAST DINNER by K2VCO  At the risk of being labelled obsessive-com-pulsive, I am announcing a bit ahead of timethat the 2001 annual FOC West Coast Din-ner will be held at the DX Convention in Vis-alia, California, on Friday 20 April. Pleasemark your calendars now and reserve theevening! Actually, my motive in mentioning this atthis time is that I would like to be able topresent a truly outstanding programme thatwill make this event the greatest ever. So Iam soliciting suggestions and volunteers toparticipate in the planning and/or presenta-tion of our after-dinner programme. If youare interested, please e-mail me directly at<rakefet@rakefet.com>.  FOC CALENDAR (callsign in brackets indicate G4FOC operator) MEMBERS’ NEWS by G4BUE 5B4AGC: George says “A big thanks from Boband myself for all the FOC calls in the logs forthe CQ CW Contest”. Bob made 4700 QSOs fromZC4ZM (SOAB), a super performance for 35hours of operating with mediocre antennae, andI made 2700 QSOs on 10 metres beating the ex-isting record by 200k points. I lost the amplifierfor about two hours and had Mike, 5B4AGX,pop round and fix it whilst I kept going running barefoot, it’s nice to have friends about.” DJØOS: Cliff went home from hospital at theend of November and found his ‘magic’ loop hadsuffered from storm damage since August.G3XNG reports that although Cliff may be ableto listen on an indoor antenna, he is quite un-able to transmit at the moment and asks if any-one has ideas to suggest, bearing in mind Cliff ismore or less literally ‘single handed’? Lee says“I am reminded that when Ernst, DL1PM, wasflying with DLH he used a mobile whip fromhotel windows and balconies”. EI5BW  : In writing to resign from FOC, Petersays that his activity levels no longer justify hiscontinuing membership. He sends 73s to all. GØORH: Ken and Ian, G3RVM, will be QRV inthe CQ 160 Meter Contest at the end of Janu-ary as G3N or G3WOI. G3KKQ: Our sincere sympathy and condolencesto Dennis who went into hospital in Decemberwith a collapsed lung. Keyhole surgery failedand he is due to have an operation at the end of December. His wife Dawn, passed away onChristmas Day following an illness. G3PQC: Doug’s New Year resolution: “I prom-ise not to mention the words  straight key everagain!”. G3VCN: Paul has decided not to renew his mem-bership due to family commitments and a lowlevel of activity that he feels does not come upto the requirements of the present rules. G3XAQ: Alan was QRV as EA8/G3XAQ 21/28December and plans to be QRV as 9G5XA dur-ing the Marathon. G4GLL: Geoff cannot return to his QTH until April because of flooding - thanks G3IGW  . G4PDQ: John will hopefully be QRV as 5B4/ G4PDQ in the Marathon while on holiday, andsays, “don’t expect any quick QSYs - I will beoperating with a ‘roach pole’ antenna (alsoknown as a ‘bit of wet string’)”. I6BQI: Angelo will be touring the Pacific for sixweeks starting in February and hopes to be QRV 160-6 metres from A35BQ, then ZK2BQI andpossibly from YJ, 5W, C2 and T3. K4DL: Jens apologies for his activity being downthis year. He has been “in and out of the hospi-tal for the past two months and they are stillrunning tests trying to find an answer!”. Hismother passed away on 15 November, aged 98and he has been busy clearing up her estate. K9DX: John was QRV 12 December as VP5/ K9DX QSL via K9QVB LA3FL: Per writes, “I am transferring from January  - 160m & 20m (G3RXP)1Final day for 2001 subscriptions13Galveston Get-TogetherCQ 160m ContestZC4GB by 5B4AGC/AGNG3N or G3WOI by GØORH/G3RVM27Committee meeting 28Deadline February N/Sheet February  - 80m & 15m (G3RXP) A35BQ and ZK2BQI (615)6/26D68C by 9H1EL, 5B4AGC, DL7AKC,G3SED, G3VMW and G3WGV+ (612)12S21YD by SM6CPY (615)Bear Island (EU-027) to the even more remoteand sought after Hopen Island (EU-063) at theend of January. I hope to put up a multi-bandbroad-band dipole to be QRV on 80m but it iscold and dark around the clock for antenna workand the polar bears do not always stay away! Ihave re-activated the old Bear Station club sta-tion JW1I, but some days I am QRV as JW3FL,which will be the call I will use on Hopen Island”. LZ1AF: Congratulations to Dimiter on being President of the LZ CW Club formed on 17 Oc-tober 2000 to promote CW activity. Club ‘meet-ings’ are held every Tuesday on 3527kHz at1930z and membership is open to foreign ama-teurs. A candidate must be nominated by a clubmember and approved by the meeting. A bulle-tin will be started shortly - thanks FISTS No-vember Key Note. NP3G: Terry finds himself in serious disagree-ment with what he sees as a lack of activity bythe Committee in taking action to ensure thatFOC remains an active club, and has resigned. OH2EA: Hans was due to leave for three monthsin Thailand at the beginning of December andhopes to be QRV occasionally from a differentclub station from the one he will be staying at -HS2AC, which does not have any HF facilities! OK1RR: Martin was QRV 18/31 December withthe Czech Millennium call OL2ØØØ. SM6CPY: Unfortunately the flood situation inwestern Bangladesh is still bad and Carl will notnow be QRV as S21YD until 12 February. VA3UZ: Yuri says all QSOs made with VE2IM(zone 2) in the CQ CW Contest were with him. VK3MJ: Wally says that he has been in poorhealth and cannot get on the bands very muchthese days so has taken the decision to leave theClub. He sends his best 73s to all the friends hehas made over the years.  W1HX: I have only just learnt that ex-memberNorm (910) became a Silent Key three weeks,almost to the hour, after his wife Tisha passedaway on 12 July.  W6OV: Dick has been QRV on the 18 year old AO-10 satellite lately and says “it is still func-tioning well”. He is waiting for the new AO-40to be ready as it “will be better to use with itsmore channels and better antennas”.
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