No more Radiogram cards

After contacting ARRL hq today I am not pleased in hearing they are not selling little packs of radiogram cards anymore.

Guess they are going the way of the dodo bird….

So we will be sending internet radiogram cards now. So old fashioned….

I will still be ordering my conelrad stickers or CD emblems once the mobile is re-painted. Yellow and blue is in fashion today.

Watch out for those pesky Russians comrade..

They are hiding around every corner.


Xenia (Dayton) Hamvention coming !

May 20th to 22nd will be the dates of the Xenia, Ohio hamvention at the Fairgrounds. Hope you got deep pockets and non maxed out credit cards for this one folks !

Other media have touted this as the ‘most expensive hamfest’ well with ticket prices being what they are,motel & hotel lodgings, the cost of gasoline, and a shutdown of over 2 years ought to put the chills into any ham hoping to have a frugal trip. Oh i forgot to mention the price of food yes something we all need had also gone up 15 to 30 percent ! I’m packing sandwiches….and beer.

My tent is ready and if I find a place with free wifi i can catch a movie or two.

Or I can just catch a bus going to South Texas and watch Elon Musks next super heavy lift off…nah im staying home !

Your author…..

Don’t say ‘Contact’ on the HF bands !

No, this is not the title of the movie with Jodie whatever her name is in it.

Someone started saying the word contact on hf and man it started a storm with the old fogeys.

The word caught on and is now widely heard.

Several veteran hams point out that this is not proper procedure and the right way is to just put out your callsign and wait for the fish

(I mean other hams,) to make ‘contact’ — see there’s that word again !

Well good luck with that. See ya in the ‘pileups’.


ARC competing with ARRL

The American Radio Club is new but they already are getting their web presence known in the hamsphere.

Designed mainly for people trying to get their license, the ‘club’ is drawing in folks to take their ham radio preperation courses.

Of course, they don’t have advertisers, or volumes of technical information like the ARRL does.

They have a website and levels of membership much like

So for more information go to:

New Skywarn net

The 147.300+ N3JLT repeater in Bluemont, Va.

Has a new Skywarn net.

Its basically a net to learn about severe weather, what role the on-air net has, and what to do and look out for.

Its hosted by NI0K and its growing by numbers weekly.

So be sure to tune in on. Tuesdays @ 8:30pm on 147.300+ repeater.]

To learn how to report severe weather and how they do things at the National weather service.

For more information on the SkyWarn program

go to the national weather service website at


EPTN net Manager

New hams have questions… do you have answers ?

Im seeing lots of people who recently became hams, and some others who are unsure of themselves asking really basic questions about power supplies, antennas and first rig questions on Reddit.

My reply is always to consult your local ham radio club.

They are a wealth of information you just need the right kind to keep you out of trouble.

This hobby can be both expensive and lethal .

I will retell a short story of a former Section Manager who wanted to fix his antennas on the roof while standing on a metal ladder and working near his power entrance to his house.

Hes not around anymore and his wife has already collected his insurance policy.

So please- please be careful !

There usually is no second chances when playing with high voltage and antenna wires and ladders.

The ARRL is a great place to learn the basics .

The real test is when you put together your first station (hf, vhf, uhf, etc.)

Lots of new hams are wondering what to do

Experienced hams should get these new hams some talks on what they need to do to be successful. But wait …there is YouTube !

You can get an old radio fixed up just by watching a video. That is amazing.

So if you have the time to mentor a ham [elmer] then it’s as close as your local repeater or website.

Thats how I got started asking questions and seeing things other hams have made. 73

Bob Rice KG4RRN/8

Spring Storms call for back up power


Several springtime storms coming up the mid atlantic have been able to topple power poles leading to loss of commercial power in our area.

Do you have large power sources like batteries or a generator to power your residence or station?

Now is the time to get these items before the summer storm season gets here and things get worse.

With inflation and food prices going up it makes sense to have a small generator at least to keep the food cold.

Some hams have completely covered their whole house with a backup generator and batteries.

It makes sense to have something for alterbative power in case the commercial power goes out. Dont forget that extension cords also come in handy during a blackout to get power where its needed most. Local talk on the repeater seems to link new battery technology with solar cells and charge controllers.

Plan your source today, before the next weather event knocks out your home power.


FCC Licensing Fees start on April 19th….

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Testing fees will start at $15.00 (VE)and $35.00 FCC test licensing/ renewal/vanity fee respectively starting on April 19th 2022.

They also state that if you fail the test, or they reject your vanity call application the fee will not be refunded. However if you are upgrading, according to news I get from the WV Section Manager, there is no fee. This will all be very confusing to a lot of hams and new hams, for sure. That is the license fee not the testing fee, if there is one.