May Newsletter

KCARC Meeting
Monday, May14, 2018, 7 PM
Cobb Rec Center
2302 State St.
Thursday, 8 PM on 146.76 repeater
(146.2 Hz tone)
Club Website:
2018 Officers:
Steve Ayers, KE5ES, President,
Mike Roche, KF5ZQB, Vice President,
Kathryn Wilson, KG5THK, Secretary,
Peg Richard, KA4UPA Treasurer
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The Prez Sez …CQ CQ CQ…
It is May and the beginning of Summer! I was pulling up the document that I use
as a template for my newsletter submission and after reading it I realized that it is
exactly what I wanted to say THIS month. In January I submitted:
I was just thinking the other day of what we could do as a club that would be fun,
informative, and not cost a lot of money. The thought of setting up some radios
and antennas to work all bands in a city park came to mind. To keep cost down the
event would be a “Bring your own refreshments”. There are a few operators that
can bring a variety or radios and antennas. This would give everyone a chance to
fellowship and explore the hobby. I will not go into specifics as it is only an idea
right now. If anyone would be interested let me know.
Once again I am asking for ideas. I would like to see the club do more than “Show
up for the meeting”. I really would like to see members step forward and volunteer
to lead “DXpeditions” around the Big Country. It doesn’t have to be major
operations or disaster preparedness exercises. I started in this hobby to have fun,
get out, and interact with others. At the next meeting please come up with ideas.
Once again: If anyone is interested let me know at .
Thank you.
Steven Ayers
KCARC President
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We need your help! In Abilene/Taylor county, we have over 300 hams.
Emergency Communications is one of the things that ham radio operators do, and as part of the privilege of having a ham license (with no fee to obtain one).
The FCC expects us to help when the need arises. Skywarn is one of those needs. We have a commitment to the City of Abilene and citizens of Taylor County (and surrounding areas) to answer the call, when severe weather threatens.
There is a sinking feeling on the part of the control operators and Skywarn leaders when the call goes out on the 146.760 repeater for Skywarn spotters and NO ONE answers the call. We realize that Skywarn is a volunteer entity, and this is why we need people who are committed to helping.
We have several new hams that are anxious to help and use their new license privileges. How about us (old hams…or should I say more experienced ham) setting an example and helping them learn the hobby that we enjoy. Volunteer to help out with emergency communications/Skywarn.
Volunteer to take someone with you and go out spotting. Show them the ropes and how to do it.
At the very least, when the call goes out for help, if you can’t get out and mobile spot, call in from your current location and spot from there. Mobile spotters are also very much needed.
Please, please listen to 146.760 when severe weather threatens, answer the call.

Bill KJ5DX
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Pegged by Peg …
Reminder that 2018 dues are payable at
$20.00 per family, all living at one address,
or $15.00 per individual for the year.
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05/18/2018 | Great Lakes Division
Convention (Dayton Hamvention)
Location: Xenia, OH
Type: ARRL Convention
Sponsor: Dayton Amateur Radio Association
06/08/2018 | West Gulf Division
Convention (Ham-Com 2018)
Location: Plano, TX
Type: ARRL Convention
Sponsor: Ham-Com, Inc.
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June 2018
9-11 June VHF
16 Kids Day
23-24 Field Day
July 2018
14-15 IARU HF World Championship
August 2018
4-5 222 MHz and Up Distance Contest
18-19 10 GHz & Up – Round 1
19 Rookie Roundup – RTTY
September 2018
8-10 September VHF
15-16 10 GHz & Up – Round 2
29-30 EME – 2.3 GHz & Up
October 2018
15-19 School Club Roundup
27-28 EME – 50 to 1296 Mhz
November 2018
3-5 Nov. Sweepstakes – CW
17-19 Nov. Sweepstakes – Phone
24-25 EME – 50 to 1296 MHz
11/30-12/2 160 Meter
December 2018
11/30-12/2 160 Meter
8-9 10 Meter
16 Rookie Roundup–CW
For a more extensive Ham Radio Contest Calendar, check this website:
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Sponsor: Key City ARC
Date: May 05 2018 (Saturday)
Time: 1:00 PM (Walk-ins allowed)
Contact: Peggy Richard (325) 672-8889
Location: Berry Lane Baptist Church
1515 Lakeside Drive
Abilene TX 79602-4123
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SPOTLIGHT ON DX, VK7CW – My friend, Allen-KA5TJS, excused himself from our 75 meter SSB QSO about 6:15 AM for a CW contact with VK7CW.
When Allen returned he emailed me: “I have had 15 QSO’s with him since January
of 2017. He is one of the most reliable stations from AUS (Australia).
All CW of course! He has a great fist and very nice guy. A lot of those were during a
SKCC contest or sprint. They are all on 40 meters somewhere.”
Steve Salvia
Tasmania, Australia
Welcome My Dear Friend
Greetings From The Island Of Tasmania Thank you for taking the time to look up my
I live on a small acreage in a rural area of North West Tasmania, about 30 kilometres
south west of Burnie.
My interest in radio and communications goes way back to my younger days and was
further inspired after I enlisted in the Australian Regular Army in 1981. During
my career I served proudly as a member of the Royal Australian Corps of Signals for 20
I was first licenced in 1995 and my previous calls were VK4EMS and VK8AM. Between
1999 and early 2001 I made two separate trips to Bougainville where I was very active
as P29BI (Bougainville Island).
Due to unforeseen circumstances and work commitments I was off the air from late
2001 until early 2012. In 2011 I relocated from the Northern Territory to the beautiful
island of Tasmania, where I was lucky enough to obtain the VK7CW call.
My main station consists of an ICOM IC- 7300, a Palstar AT2K manual antenna tuner
and an Ameritron AL-811 amplifier. My antenna system consists of a KIO Hex beam
for 20-6m, a fan inverted vee for 160m/80m/40m/30m and a monoband
ground plane for 30m.
For portable and QRP operations I have a Youkits HB-1B MK3 CW transciver,
an MFJ-9020 20m QRP CW transceiver, a Yaesu FT-857D and a Yaesu FT-817nd.
My main passion and interest in this great hobby is CW and I really enjoy using one of
my bugs (semi-automatic keys) or one of my sideswipers (cootie key). Including my
Alabama Vibroplex Blue Racer (circa 2000) pictured below.
Or my 1953 Vibroplex Presentation model with La Hiff adjustable main spring pictured
Or my World War II Australian Buzza No.100 Double Lever key pictured below.
Using a sideswiper is very natural and it is very easy to homebrew a key as you can be
seen by my steel ruler sideswiper below. I truly cannot believe that they are not more
A classic sideswiper ‘The Twanger’ made by Tom G3HGE (pictured below).
My interest in CW has led me to gather a small but ever growing collection of
keys. Collecting keys is very addictive and I am always on the lookout for more,
especially vibroplex bugs and sideswipers.
Having so many keys with different sending styles can get confusing. For that reason I
use my left hand to send with a straight key and sideswiper. For single lever and dual
lever (iambic) I use my right hand. For semi-automatic bugs I can use either a left
handed or right handed version. I do try and use all of my keys on a regular basis,
including my left handed 90 degree Vizbug (pictured below) which was made by Tom K4VIZ.
Being very passionate about CW I continuously strive to improve both my sending and receiving skills. I do hope that this great art is never lost and would encourage anyone of any age to take the time and effort to learn this very rewarding and enjoyable skill.

March KCARC Meeting

This months club meeting will held on Monday March  12th at 1900 hours at Cobb Park Recreation Center.

It is at 2302 State Street Abilene,Texas

There will be information and training on the upcoming Steam and Wheels Bike Ride. If you would like to help out please attend the meeting.

There will discussion Texas State Parks on the Air (TSPOTA). TSPOTA will be held the  first weekend in April.

There will also be a report on the ongoing Technician Class.

Everyone is encouraged to attend.

February KCARC Meeting

This months club meeting will held on Monday February 12th at 1900 hours at Cobb Park Recreation Center.

It is on State Street. There will be a report on Winter Field Day, information on Skywarn Training and information

on Texas State Parks on the Air (TSPOTA).

There will also be some discussion on the upcoming Technician Class.

Everyone is encouraged to attend.

Ham Radio Technician Class

Key City Amateur Radio Club (KCARC) will be hosting an Technician Operator Ham operator class starting March 3 2018.

Classes will be held at Abilene Regional Medical Center (ARMC)   Women’s Center.

Classes will start at 8:30AM Every Saturday starting March 3rd.

The cost of the class is free but student will need to purchase class book. The books will be available at each class session.

National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

NWS San Angelo SKYWARN Spotter Training Schedule for 2018

TBD = To Be Determined

Tuesday Jan 16 Runnels Winters Fire Dept. 7:00 PM
Monday Feb 12 Concho  Eden Fire Dept. 7:00 PM
Tuesday Feb 13 Schleicher Eldorado Fire Dept. 7:00 PM
Tuesday Feb 20 McCulloch Brady VFW At Richards Park    6:00 PM  
Saturday Feb 24 Taylor  Abilene Abilene Christian University-
Onstead-Packer Biblical Studies Building
(Hart Auditorium)
9 AM to Noon
Saturday Mar 3 Brown Brownwood Howard Payne University-
Newman Hall
9 AM to Noon
Monday Mar 5 Jones Stamford Fire Dept. TBD
Monday Mar 19 Nolan Sweetwater Texas State Technical College 6:00 PM
Tuesday Mar 20 Menard Menard Fire Dept.   7:00 PM
Wednesday Mar 21 Sutton Sonora Fire Dept. TBD
Saturday Apr 14 Tom Green San Angelo Trinity Lutheran Church 9 AM to Noon

Late Breaking News

Tonight’s meeting will be in the Cobb Park Recreation Center.

This is a permanent move. Peg Richard KA4UPA beat everyone else to reserve the room so we have it all year.

January KCARC club meeting

This months club meeting will held on Monday January 8th at 1900 hours at Cobb Park Activity Center.

It is on Forrest Street between State Street and North 10th.

Everyone is encouraged to attend.

Winter Field Day

Winter Field Day Association

 Winter Field Day Association (WFDA) is a dedicated group of Amateur Radio Operators who believe that emergency communications in a winter environment is just as important as the preparations and practice that is done each summer but with some additional unique operational concerns.

 We believe as do those entities of ARRL Organizations like ARES & RACES that maintaining your operational skills should not be limited to fair weather scenarios. The addition of Winter Field Day will enhance those already important skills of those that who generously volunteer their time and equipment to these organizations. This is why WFD is open to all licensed amateur radio operators worldwide.

 Disasters are unpredictable by nature and can strike when you least expect them. WFDA’s goal is to help enhance your skills and ready you for all environmental conditions found in the US and Canada during the spring, summer, fall and winter Preparedness is the key to a professional and timely response during any event and this is what local and state authorities are expecting when they reach  out to the emergency service groups that offer their services.

 If you are serious about emergency communications as we are; we welcome you to join us for our yearly event. We are sure you will find this event a pleasant change and challenge to that of a normal summer time field day.

During 2006 the suggestion for SPAR to sponsor a Winter Field Day was made and after discussions in the Forum, rules and a date were set. On January 13-14, 2007 the First Annual Winter Field Day was held and based on comments from participants; this will indeed go down in the record books as the start of an annual tradition.

It all started in June when Charles, N5PVL asked if SPAR would be interested in sponsoring a winter field day activity. There followed a discussion, proposed rules and modifications, all culminating in a vote in September approving SPAR’s sponsorship. Next cam a flurry of activities to get the word out on a very short notice and finally, the actual contest in January.

Walt (W5ALT) and Charlie (KY5U) contributed greatly to the success of SPAR and WFD. However, due to medical issues, activity within SPAR, their forum and support of WFD have declined. Walt did state in the forum that he was somewhat overloaded.

Many amateur operators were upset that 2015 scores were not posted and we could not get a response out of SPAR. They also thought that WFD would just fade away. That is when several of us band together and formed Winter Field day Association.

The rules were the same until we felt a change in rules was needed. The date is still the last full weekend in January. A committee was setup to get things setup and running.

They are: Tom (WD8MBE), Bill (VE3FI), Dave (W3DET), Erik (WX4ET) and Ken (N8KC).If there are any questions, comments, suggestions or complaints, please contact us.

Meet The Team
Tom (WD8MBE)
Bill (VE3FI)
Dave (W3DET)
Erik (WX4ET)
ken (N8KC)

VE Test Session

Image result for ham radio testing clip art

Saturday, November 3, 2018 at 1:00PM
Berry Lane Baptist Church 1515 Lakeside Drive


You will need a photo ID;
A copy of your Amateur Radio License if you are upgrading;
2 pencils;
A Calculator,

Walk-ins welcome.

Good luck!

73 de KF5ZQB