HF Propagation



SFI (Solar Flux Index) — Higher is better

70 Poor
80 Good
90 Better
100+ Best

Higher solar flux values generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, and 20 meter bands. Solar flux rarely affects the 30, 40, 60, 80, and 160 meter bands.

A Index — Lower is better

1 to 60 Best
7 to 9 Good
11 or more Poor

Lower A-index values generally suggests better propagation on the 10, 12, 15, 17, and 20 meter bands.

K Index — Lower is better

0 to 1 Best
2 Good
3 to 4 Poor
5 Very poor

Minutes – March 2021

MCWA Meeting Minutes of March 2, 2021

DRAFT

President Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) called the March 2021 meeting to order at 7:06 PM by Zoom meetings. The Pledge of Allegiance followed led by Dave Holmgren (K9AT). Ralph noted that the meeting and the presentation would not be recorded. Also, voting via Zoom Reactions will be attempted tonight.

Board members present were Gary Dembski (W9GD), Dean Hettel (WC9C), Ralph Iden (WB9ICF), Gary Kaatz (W9TD), Dan Larson (KD9M)and Mike Metroka (WB8BZK).

A total of 37 people were in attendance, including one guest; Bob Sepot (KC9JBA).

Approval of Minutes

The meeting minutes from the February 2021 meeting were previously posted to the MCWA website for review.   John Cankar (W9JM) motioned to approve the minutes with Dave Whiteside (N9BSA) seconding the motion. The motion was approved by unanimous voice and Zoom Reactions vote.

Membership and Financial Reports

Treasurer Dean Hettel (WC9C) presented the membership and financial reports for December. MCWA has a membership of 123 full members, 8 family members and 2 associate members for a total of     133. Dean reminded the membership to pay their dues for this year and set the deadline to the end of this week after which those that have not paid will be removed from the roster and the K9RN reflector. Ralph (WB9ICF) demonstrated the roster on the MCWA website.

Opening Balance $7,056.03
Deposits $226.77 (dues)
Expenditures $12.98- (Sympathy cards, postage)
Interest $0.06
Final Balance $7,269.88

A motion to approve the financial report was made by Fred Soop (AC9RQ) with a second by Joe Robin (N9OK). The motion was approved by voice vote.

Announcements

Laura Whiteside’s (N6JLT) father passed. Mike Miller (KA9DFI) has entered long term care as a consequence of COVID. Pierre Berube (K9EYE) mentioned that another blind ham, Dave Behrendt (KA9KWR) is in need of assistance to get his station operational. Pierre and Ken Field (KO9H) are coordinating. Please contact them if you can assist.


Hamfest Update

Nearby hamfests have been cancelled. Hamcation 2021 was held virtually on February 13-14. Gary Kaatz (W9TD), John Lund (N9DJ), Ralph Iden (WB9ICF), Dean Hettel (WC9C) and Dave Whiteside (N9BSA) reported attending. John Kalenowsky (K9JK) reported that the 6-meter Club hamfest is cancelled. Kermit Carlson (W9XA) reported that several hamfests are still tentatively “on” including the Dekalb Hamfest on May 2, KARSFEST on July 18, Wisconsin ARES Connect Conference, Superior ARRL Convention on May 1, Kaukauna and the MARC Swapfest in August.

The second annual QSO Today virtual Ham Expo will be held March 12-14. This year there is an admission charge of $10 in advance or $12.50 “at the door”. Presentations will be on demand through April 12.


Contest Reports

10-10 Intl. Winter Contest SSB: No reports.

ARRL School Club Roundup: No reports.

CQ WW WPX RTTY Contest: Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) reported that he participated.

Hamcation QSO Party: No reports.

ARRL Intl. DX Contest CW: Gary Kaatz (W9TD), Joe Robin (N9OK), John Lund(N9DJ) and Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) reported participating in the contest.

Russian WW Contest – PSK: No reports.

CQ WW 160-meter Contest SSB: John Lund (N9DJ), Dave Cooper (KA9OZP) and Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) reported participating in the contest.

NAQP – RTTY: Joe Robin (N9OK), Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) and Dave Whaley (NT9E) reported participating in the contest.

Weekly CWT and SSTs: Gary Kaatz (W9TD) and Jim McDonald (N7US) reported their participation.

Upcoming:

ARRL Intl. DX Contest – SSB – March 6-7
Stew Perry Topband Challenge – March 13-14
Wisconsin QSO Party – March 14-15
BARTG HF RTTY Contest – March 20-22
CQ WW WPX Contest – SSB – March 27-28


Upcoming MCWA Presentations

April 6         RTTY Contesting using the Flex, NY7G Digital Engine and N3FJP,                               Dave Whaley, NT9E

May 4           Inexpensive Test Equipment for Hams, Part 3, Gary Kaatz, W9TD

June 1          Show & Tell (tentative)


Awards and license upgrades

John Dewey (KA9CAR) reported that license exams will be given at the McHenry Moose Lodge on March 13. Contact Frank Heabler (W9STH) for reservations. A FRN is required.

Old Business

2021 MCWA Field Day will be June 25-27 at Rush Creek. Dan Larson (KD9M) presented the current state of planning from the February 25 meeting. Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) asked if the alternate Field Day for home stations is going to be available this year. Dan said it would be but that home stations would be limited to 150 watts due to complaints last year. Tom Pusateri (W9NBG) asked Dan for his email address.

The first “Hams Helping Hams” online Zoom session was held on February 15.  The topic was, “Learning more about the NanoVNA”. There were 13 participants and it ran for 75 minutes. The link to the video has been posted on the K9RN reflector. Dan Larson (KD9M), Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) and Loren Burkett (K3RFC) thought it went well. Topics for the next session were solicited.

New Business

Ralph reported that the Lake County Maker Faire will be held virtually on April 17 from 10:30AM to 3:00PM. Spots of 15, 30 or 45 minutes plus Q&A are available. Ralph wants MCWA to participate. Tom Pusateri (W9NBG) asked “What is a Maker Faire?” Ralph referred to the website and said that is was an exhibition of things built, crafted, invented, etc.

Wrap up

Kermit Carlson (W9XA) will be presenting the “ARRL Update” following the adjournment of tonight’s meeting.

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, April 6, 2021 by Zoom meetings. Open “eyeball” QSOs start at 6:30 PM, with the meeting starting at 7:00 PM.

A motion to adjourn was made by Joe Robin (N9OK) and seconded by Roger Scott (KF9D). The motion was approved by voice vote and the meeting was adjourned at 7:57 PM.

Prepared by Gary Kaatz (W9TD), MCWA Secretary.

Minutes – February 2021

MCWA Meeting Minutes of February 2, 2021

President Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) called the February 2021 meeting to order at 7:00 PM by Zoom meetings. The Pledge of Allegiance followed led by Dave Holmgren (K9AT). Ralph noted that the meeting and the presentation would not be recorded.

Board members present were Gary Dembski (W9GD), Dean Hettel (WC9C), Ralph Iden (WB9ICF), Gary Kaatz (W9TD), Dan Larson (KD9M)and Mike Metroka (WB8BZK).

A total of 36 people were in attendance, including no guests.

Ralph asked for a minute of silence to acknowledge the passing of two members, Steve James (KA9NPT) and Neil Martin (NM9T).

Approval of Minutes

The meeting minutes from the December 2020 meeting were previously posted to the MCWA website for review.   Dennis Ryan (KA9PUC) motioned to approve the minutes with Gary Dembski (W9GD) seconding the motion. The motion was approved by unanimous voice vote.

Membership and Financial Reports

Treasurer Dean Hettel (WC9C) presented the membership and financial reports for December. MCWA has a membership of 122 full members, 8 family members and 2 associate members for a total of     132. Dean reminded the membership to pay their dues for this year.

Opening Balance $6,855.85
Deposits $309.12 (dues)
  $73.00 (donation in Joe K9DMV’s memory)
Expenditures $160.00 (FD site rental)
  $22.00 (website hosting)
Interest $0.06
Final Balance $7,056.03

A motion to approve the financial report was made by Dennis Ryan (KA9PUC) with a second by Dave Whaley (NT9E). The motion was approved by voice vote.

Glenn Otto (K9OK) questioned the odd amount for the dues deposit. Dean explained that some members did not use “send to a friend” and the club was charged a $0.59 fee. John Kalenowsky (K9JK) asked how many members have not paid their dues yet. Dean said the number was 36. Dennis Ryan (KA9PUC) asked about paying through the MCWA website and Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) said “not yet”.

Announcements


Hamfest Update

Nearby hamfests have been cancelled. Presentations from Contest University’s propagation summit are on the CTU website. You can also find the presentations from the St. Louis Winterfest on YouTube. Dan Larson (KD9M) and Joe Robin (N9OK) reported attending the WCRA virtual hamfest. Mike Metroka (WB8BZK), John Kalenowsky (K9JK) and Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) reported attending the CTU event. Dave Whaley (NT9E) and Gary Dembski (W9GD) reported attending the St. Louis event.

Hamcation 2021 will be held virtually on February 13-14. It is free although prize tickets can be purchased for $5 each. The second annual QSO Today virtual Ham Expo will be held March 12-14. This year there is an admission charge of $10 in advance or $12.50 “at the door”. Presentations will be on demand through April 12.


Contest Reports

NAQP CW: Dave Whaley (NT9E), Mike Metroka (WB8BZK), Jim McDonald (N7US), Gary Kaatz (W9TD), Dennis Ryan (KA9PUC) and Roger Scott (KF9D) all reported participating in the event.

January VHF Contest: Dave Whaley (NT9E), Mike Metroka (WB8BZK), John Kalenowsky (K9JK) all reported participating in the contest.

NAQP SSB: Dave Whaley (NT9E), Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) and Jim McDonald (N7US) reported participating in the event.

Winter Field Day: Dan Larson (KD9M) reported that he made no QSOs while out in his truck with QRP and a mag loop, but did much better indoors at his regular station.

CQ WW 160-meter Contest CW: Joe Robin (N9OK), John Lund (N9DJ), Mike Metroka (WB8BZK), Jim McDonald (N7US) and Dan Larson (KF9D) reported participating in the contest.

Jim McDonald also reported operating in the BARTG RTTY contest, the ARRL RTTY Roundup, the weekly CWT’s and SST’s.

Upcoming:

10-10 Intl. Winter Contest SSB – February 6-7
CQ WW WPX RTTY Contest – February 13-14
Hamcation QSO Party – February 13-14
ARRL Intl DX Contest CW – February 20-21
CQ WW 160-meter Contest SSB – February 26-28


Upcoming MCWA Presentations

March 2         ARRL Update, Kermit Carlson, W9XA

April 6         RTTY Contesting using the Flex, NY7G Digital Engine and N3FJP,                               Dave Whaley, NT9E

May 4           Inexpensive Test Equipment for Hams, Part 3, Gary Kaatz, W9TD


Awards and license upgrades

Jim McDonald (N7US) received the Society of Midwest Contester’s Lifetime Achievement Award. The award is granted to SMC members who make 10,000 QSOs for the club in 28 specific annual contests that have club participation. Jim was able to achieve the 10,000 QSO level in about one year which was an excellent effort.  Dave Holmgren (K9AT) reported reclaiming his old call (K9RUF) for his club call. Dean Hettel (WC9C) reported receiving his certificate from the 12 days of Christmas event. Gary Kaatz (W9TD) reported receiving his certificate for the Rt. 66 event. John Dewey reported that he participated in a new VEC group that had one exam this January in McHenry. Tom Pusateri (W9NBG) reported that the DuPage county VEC currently is running a General class and will do testing when it is finished.

Old Business

2021 MCWA Field Day will be June 25-27 at Rush Creek. Dan Larson (KD9M) presented the current state of planning from the January 28 meeting. The board had approved $300 of the $750 budget for Field Day and motion for the remaining $450 was made by John Kalenowsky (K9JK) and seconded by John Dewey (KA9CAR). The motion passed unanimously by voice vote.

Ralph is planning on piloting the “Hams Helping Hams” online Zoom sessions in February and will record them for reference by MCWA members. The topic of the first session will be, “Learning more about the NanoVNA”. John Kalenowsky (K9JK) asked about the specific date. Ralph said it would be within the next two weeks.

Ralph is working on making the recorded programs available online. He will meet with the board to detail the plan and address any questions.

New Business

None

Wrap up

Sevim Ablay (WB8BHN) will be presenting “European SOTA & Friedrichshafen” following the adjournment of tonight’s meeting.

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, March 2, 2021 by Zoom meetings. Open “eyeball” QSOs start at 6:30 PM, with the meeting starting at 7:00 PM.

A motion to adjourn was made by Dave Whaley (NT9E) and seconded by Harold Burt (W9HB). The motion was approved by voice vote and the meeting was adjourned at 7:56 PM.

Prepared by Gary Kaatz (W9TD), MCWA Secretary.

Minutes – January 2021

MCWA Meeting Minutes of January 5, 2021

President Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) called the January 2021 meeting to order at 7:03 PM by Zoom meetings. The Pledge of Allegiance followed led by Dave Holmgren (K9AT). Ralph noted that the meeting and the presentation would be recorded.

Board members present were Gary Dembski (W9GD), Dean Hettel (WC9C), Ralph Iden (WB9ICF), Gary Kaatz (W9TD), Dan Larson (KD9M), Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) and Mike Salak (KC9Q).

A total of 37 people were in attendance, with no guests.

Approval of Minutes

The meeting minutes from the December 2020 meeting were previously posted to the MCWA website for review.   John Cankar (W9JM) motioned to approve the minutes with Kent Dulaney (K9KMD) seconding the motion. The motion was approved by unanimous voice vote.

Membership and Financial Reports

Treasurer Dean Hettel (WC9C) presented the membership and financial reports for December. MCWA has a membership of 120 full members, 8 family members and 2 associate members for a total of     130 not including new member Tim Schroepfer (KD9OJP). Dean reminded the membership to pay their dues for this year.

Opening Balance $6,706.39
Deposits $149.41 (dues)
Expenditures $0.00
Interest $0.05
Final Balance $6,855.85

A motion to approve the financial report was made by Roger Scott (KF9D) with a second by Fred Soop (AC9RQ). The motion was approved by voice vote.

Announcements

FCC Amateur Radio Fees NPRM (20-270) was finalized in a Report and Order released on December 29. Fees were scaled back to $35 for new license applications, special temporary authority requests, rule waiver requests, license renewals and vanity call sign applications. There will be no fee for administrative updates such as a change of mailing or email address. John Cankar (W9JM) noted that the fee is imposed per application.

Additionally, effective June 29, 2021, amateur radio licensees and candidates must provide the FCC with an email address on all applications. Log into the ULS License Manager System with your FRN and password and update your record. John Dewey (KA9CAR) said that the password requirements have changed and if your old password does not meet the requirements, you will need to change it. He noted that there could be some difficulty doing so if you did not have a challenge question set up.

Hamfest Update

Nearby hamfests have been cancelled with the exception of the Wheaton hamfest which is to be held virtually over Zoom on January 17 from 8:30 AM until 1:30 PM You need to register for it at http://www.w9ccu.org/Hamfest.html.  Hamvention is still tentatively on and replacement tickets have been sent although not everyone has received them.

In remembrance of K9DMV, MCWA received a donation from Jerry Kessler, N4JL, in the amount of $73 to be used to advance amateur radio and support MCWA.

Contest Reports

ARRL 160-meter CW: K9KMD, N9OK, KF9D, N9DJ and WB8BZK participated

ARRL 10-meter SSB/CW: K9KMD, N9OK, KF9D, N9DJ, W9NBG, WC9C and WB8BZK participated

Rookie Roundup CW: no participants

Straight Key Night: WB9ICF participated

ARRL RTTY Roundup: NT9E, K9KMD, N9OK with over 1,000 QSOs and WB8BZK participated

ARRL EME Contest: KD2RPE made two contacts

Upcoming:

NAQP CW – January 9-10
January VHF Contest – January 16-18
NAQP SSB – January 16-17
CQ Worldwide 160-meter CW – January 29-31
Winter Field Day – January 30-31
10-10 Intl. Winter Contest SSB – February 6-7

Upcoming MCWA Presentations

February 2      European SOTA & Friedrichshafen, Sevim Ablay WB8BHN

March 2         ARRL Update, Kermit Carlson, W9XA

April 6         RTTY Contesting using the Flex, NY7G Digital Engine and N3FJP, Dave Whaley, NT9E

May 4           Inexpensive Test Equipment for Hams, Part 3, Gary Kaatz, W9TD

Awards and license upgrades

No members reported any new awards.

Old Business

None

New Business

Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) started a discussion about this year’s Field Day. Ralph first wanted to confirm that MCWA will participate in Field Day this year since funds were already approved by the board, second, identify a volunteer to act as Chairperson and third, secure the Rush Creek site this week. Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) volunteered to be an assistant chair and to secure the site. Dan Larson (KD9M) volunteered to be the Chairperson. John Dewey (KA9CAR) volunteered to be a station captain. Kent Dulaney (K9KMD) volunteered to provide a generator.

Ralph is planning on piloting the “Hams Helping Hams” online Zoom sessions in January or February and will record them for reference by MCWA members. Topics that were suggested include DMR, weak signal modes, LOTW set-up and use and an ESP8266 take home kit deep dive. Ralph asked for volunteer presenters and additional topics. Angelo Fanzone (KD9QVW) suggested by email the NanoVNA as a topic.

Wrap up

Gary Kaatz (W9TD) will be presenting “Inexpensive Test Equipment for Hams, Part 2” following the adjournment of tonight’s meeting.

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, February 2, 2021 by Zoom meetings. Open “eyeball” QSOs start at 6:30 PM, with the meeting starting at 7:00 PM.

A motion to adjourn was made by John Cankar (W9JM) and seconded by John Dewey (KA9CAR). The motion was approved by voice vote and the meeting was adjourned at 7:47 PM.

Prepared by Gary Kaatz (W9TD), MCWA Secretary.

Minutes – December 2020

Meeting Minutes of December 1, 2020

President Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) called the December 2020 meeting to order at 7:02 PM by Zoom meetings. The Pledge of Allegiance followed led by Dave Holmgren (K9AT). Ralph informed the membership that Deborah Maresso, wife of Steve Maresso (KB9OLD), passed away on November 27 at her home in Fontana, Wisconsin.

Board members present were Gary Dembski (W9GD), Dean Hettel (WC9C nee WD9FOO), Ralph Iden (WB9ICF),  Gary Kaatz (W9TD),  Dan Larson (KD9M), Mike Metroka (WB8BZK), and Mike Salak (KC9Q).

A total of 33 people were in attendance, including three guests, our speaker for tonight, Lloyd Berg (N9LB), Bob Sepot (KC9JBA) and Robert Sepot (KC9LOU).

Approval of Minutes

The meeting minutes from the November 2020 meeting were previously posted to the MCWA website for review.   John Cankar (W9JM) motioned to approve the minutes with Harold Burt(W9HB) seconding the motion. The motion was approved by unanimous voice vote.

Membership and Financial Reports

Treasurer Dean Hettel (WC9C) presented the membership and financial reports for September. MCWA has a membership of 120 full members, 8 family members and 2 associate members for a total of     130. Dean reminded the membership to pay their dues for the upcoming year.

Opening Balance $6,289.95
Deposits $170.00 (dues)
$276.43 (Sale of K9DMV rotor donation)
Expenditures $30.05 (Shipping for rotor that was sold)
Interest $0.06
Final Balance $6,706.39

A motion to approve the financial report was made by Joe Robin (N9OK) with a second by Mike Salak (KC9Q). The motion was approved by voice vote

Announcements

K9RN Field Day results: our score of 8,930 (2006 QSOs) ranked 5th place nationally in class 2A and 1st place in the Illinois Section and Central Division. The MCWA Club aggregate score was 15,712.

Dayton Hamvention is tentatively a “go”. Tickets available for purchase now, replacement tickets for cancelled 2020 Hamvention are being sent.

“Hams in Space” – Crew Dragon spacecraft Resilience launched on November 16 with four amateur radio operators on board. The return to Earth is scheduled for May 2021.

FCC Amateur Radio Fees NPRM (20-270) comments closed on November 16. A total of 3,963 comments were posted out of over 750,000 U.S. Amateurs.


Hamfest/Conference Reports

Sweepstakes – CW: Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) said he made more contacts than he ever has. Roger Scott (KF9D) said he had a lot of fun.

Sweepstakes – SSB: Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) and Joe Robin (N9OK) participated. Joe remarked that 10 meters was OK.

CQ Worldwide DX Contest – CW: Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) and Roger Scott (KF9D) participated.

Upcoming:

ARRL 160-meter CW Contest – December 4-6
ARRL 10-meter SSB/CW Contest – December 12-13
Rookie Roundup CW – December 20
Straight Key Night – January 1
RTTY Roundup – January 2-3
January VHF Contest – January 16-18


Upcoming MCWA Presentations

January 5      Inexpensive Test Equipment for Hams, Part 2, Gary Kaatz W9TD
February 2    European SOTA & Friedrichshafen, Sevim Ablay WB8BHN
March 2         ARRL Update, Kermit Carlson, W9XA

Ralph said that Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) has more presentations on tap.


Awards and license upgrades

No members reported any new awards. Both Bill Wacaser and Dean Hettel reported receiving new call signs, KD9WEW and WC9C, respectively.

Old Business

The first part of the membership survey results was shared last month. The survey closed for additional responses on November 30. A total of 50 responses were received from a membership of 129 (39% response rate). Ralph presented graphs of the responses to a number of survey questions relating to what the membership is looking for from MCWA. Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) encouraged the membership to give talks on the topics that were requested in the survey.

New Business

No other new business was proposed.

Wrap up

Lloyd Berg (N9LB) will be presenting “Introduction to getting on 472 and 136 kHz” following the adjournment of tonight’s meeting.

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, January 5, 2021 by Zoom meetings. Open “eyeball” QSOs start at 6:30 PM, with the meeting starting at 7:00 PM.

A motion to adjourn was made by Dennis Ryan (KA9PUC) and seconded by Joe Jaax (W9JCS). The motion was approved by voice vote and the meeting was adjourned at 7:44 PM.

Prepared by Gary Kaatz (W9TD), MCWA Secretary

Minutes – November 2020

Meeting Minutes of November 3, 2020

President Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) called the November 2020  meeting to order at 7:00 PM by Zoom meetings. The Pledge of Allegiance followed led by Dave Holmgren (K9AT).

Board members present were Gary Dembski (W9GD), Dean Hettel (WD9FOO), Ralph Iden (WB9ICF),  Gary Kaatz (W9TD),  Dan Larson (KD9M), Mike Metroka (WB8BZK), and Mike Salak (KC9Q).

A total of 36 people were in attendance, including two guests, a new licensee, Angelo Franzone (KB9QVW) and a past member, Bob Sepot (KC9JBA). Pierre Berube (K9EYE) suggested Angelo read the ARRL publication, “Now You’re Talking!”

Approval of Minutes

The meeting minutes from the October 2020 meeting were previously posted to the MCWA website for review. John Cankar (W9JM) motioned to approve the minutes with Bill Wacaser (KD9GIU) seconding the motion. The motion was approved by unanimous vote.

Membership and Financial Reports

Treasurer Dean Hettel (WD9FOO) presented the membership and financial reports for September. MCWA has a membership of 119 full members, 8 family members and 2 associate members for a total of 129. Dean reminded the membership to pay their dues for the upcoming year.

Opening Balance $6,164.80
Deposits $40.00 (dues)
$235.00 (K9DMV antenna donation)
Expenditures $149.90 (Zoom 12-month subscription)
Interest $0.05
Final Balance $6,289.95

A motion to approve the financial report was made by John Kalenowsky (K9JK) with a second by Dave Whaley (NT9E). The motion was approved by voice vote. Pierre Berube (K9EYE) asked about the possibility of a lifetime membership.

Announcements

FCC Amateur Radio Fees NPRM (20-270) comments close on November 16. As of 11/3, 2,918 comments have been posted out of over 750,000 U.S. Amateurs. Links to submit and view comments can be found on the MCWA website under “News”.


Hamfest/Conference Reports

CQ Worldwide DX Contest – SSB: John Cankar (W9JM) reported he made 180 contacts. John Lund (N9DJ) commented that 15 & 20-meters were good with VE’s on 80. Joe Robin (N9OK) commented that it was fun, with band conditions improving.

Upcoming:

November Sweepstakes – CW on November 7-9
November Sweepstakes – SSB on November 21-23
CQ Worldwide DX Contest – CW on November 28-29
ARRL 160-meter CW Contest – December 4-6
ARRL 10-meter SSB/CW Contest – December 12-13


Upcoming MCWA Presentations

December 1      Introduction to getting on 472 and 136 kHz, Lloyd Berg N9LB
January 5, 2021 Inexpensive Test Equipment for Hams, Part 2, Gary Kaatz W9TD
February 2      European SOTA & Friedrichshafen, Sevim Ablay WB8BHN

Ralph encouraged the membership to consider making a presentation since these are all that are currently scheduled.


Awards and license upgrades

No members reported any new awards. Our guest Angelo Franzone (KD9QVW) was recently licensed.

Old Business

Bill Wacaser (KD9GIU) and Doug Tucker (KD9PQI) organized an afternoon of amateur radio with a small group of scouts on Sunday, October 18 at the Crystal Lake Nature Center. Bill and Doug reached out to us to help make the event meaningful for the scouts. Attendance was capped at 12 unlike previous scouting events where 100+ scouts waited their turn to get on the air. The actual count was 9 scouts. The small number and extended time gave the scouts the opportunity to explore amateur radio without being rushed. The experience included a classroom session, six and two-meter communication, amateur radio and the internet, portable HF operations and AllStarLink communications. Fourteen club members participated, 7 on-site and 7 providing contacts. The event was covered by Northwest Herald reporter, Sam Lounsberry. The subsequent article spread worldwide. Bill said that the classroom session he ran was one hour and covered the basics of ham radio. He also said that 3 of the 9 scouts plus one parent are planning to get their licenses. He hopes that next year it can be an all-day affair. Dave Holmgren (K9AT) described his experience with the AllStarLink exhibit that he ran for the scouts.

New Business

The membership survey was sent out following last month’s meeting. A total of 44 responses were received, a 34% response rate. Survey will remain open until approximately November 15. Ralph presented graphs of the responses to a number of survey questions. The remainder will be shared at the next meeting.

The Board of Directors held a planning meeting on October 20. Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) volunteered to continue as program Chairperson. The board also reviewed the current list of possible meeting venues. Ralph Iden (WB9ICF) presented a preliminary analysis of the membership survey and historical statistics of membership, meeting attendance and finances were shared. He reported that the health of the club was excellent. The board voted to keep the annual membership dues at $10. The budget for the upcoming year was finalized considering a desire to maintain programs and activities, raise awareness in the community and make prudent investments to support new amateurs.

MCWA Budget for 2020-2021

Operating expenses
Club liability insurance                       $225 ($200)
MCWA website hosting                    $75  ($66)
MCWA.org domain registration    $12  ($12)
Zoom Pro account                               $200 (149.90)

Program expenses
Field Day                                                  $750 (need membership approval after planning has started)
Dinner Social                                         $299 (appetizers and door prizes)
Outreach                                                 $299 (scouting and incentives)

Total Budgeted                                   $1860

Projected revenue from dues     $1190 (projected revenues from eBay sales and auction not shown)

Net over                                                 $670

No other new business was proposed.

Wrap up

John Cankar W9JM will be presenting “QSLing” following the adjournment of tonight’s meeting.

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, December 1, 2020 by Zoom meetings. Open “eyeball” QSOs start at 6:30 PM, with the meeting starting at 7:00 PM.

A motion to adjourn was made by Mike Metroka (WB8BZK) and seconded by Harold Burt (W9HB). The motion was approved by voice vote and the meeting was adjourned at 8:10 PM.

Prepared by Gary Kaatz (W9TD), MCWA Secretary