Wednesday, August 30, 2006

6320 Miles roundtrip in 60 seconds

Raise your hand if you have never transmitted on 20 meters.

OK, I see a few hands out there. You may not have license privileges for 20 meters, and some of you might be afraid to make that first long distance, DX, contact. This one-minute recording shows you how simple it can be. Scroll (way down) for transcript.

I had never talked to John before this, and we just said "hello" and "goodbye", yet I have a new friend now that I didn't have the day before. We have exchanged a few emails since then (I asked him for permission to post this, and he enthusiastically agreed). Who knows - some day we may meet, or we may not. But either way, ham radio comes through again.

With everything that is wrong in the world today, amateur radio builds bridges between countries and cultures.


Show notes

John's page on QRZ.COM (people never look like they sound - thanks John for the picture!)


Transcript, with explanations in [square brackets]:

CQ CQ DX CQ David Xray [phonetics for DX] echo alpha one whisky xray echo america one whisky xray, qrz dx

[I call him]

kilo zanzibar one ocean [ = kz1o ] thank you for the call good aft... good evening, thank you for the call, you are 5 and 7 [means perfectly readable signal, strong], fifty seven, QRM on the frequency [interference at his end while receiving]. The handle here is John, Juliet Ocean Honolulu November [phonetics for J-O-H-N], John. QSL? [Did you receive it?]

[I transmit my information back to him: name, signal report, location]

QSL [I received everything)], Dave, thank you for New Hampshire, near Boston, thank you for the QSO [conversation], our first QSO. Kilo Zulu one Ocean, echo alpha one whisky xray. Hope to meet you. bye bye.

[I transmit]

See you.

QRZ QRZ DX [who's next?]

Echo Alpha one Whisky Xray
Echo America one Whisky Xray


Monday, August 28, 2006

Space: The Final Frontier

This past weekend I was at the Boxboro ARRL convention and bumped into quite a few interesting people. One of those was Barry Baines, WD4ASW, from AMSAT. Barry tells me all about AMSAT and the history of Orbital Satellite Carrying Amateur Radio (OSCAR). Join us, in the lobby of the Holiday Inn near the water fountain, with our feet on the ground as we reach for the stars!

Show notes

AMSAT is at
Boxboro convention web page is at

Friday, August 18, 2006

Whisky One Alpha Whisky ( W1AW )

Joe Carcia, NJ1Q, has been the station manager at the Hiram Percy Maxim memorial station W1AW, for over ten years. Joe keeps the station running and looking great.

Did you know that you can visit the station, and even operate it? No matter what class of license you have, from Novice to Amateur Extra, there is a seat waiting for you. And what a station this is!

I talked with Joe during my visit to ARRL headquarters. He described the station, and a little bit about each of the operating positions. This podcast is a little shorter than usual -- as we were talking, a group of visitors arrived for a tour, and Joe had to get back to business.

As I watched him in action, I could tell he's done this before! Go check it out for yourself, if you can ever get to Connecticut. It will be worth it. Oh, and bring your license and get ready to get on the air. Trust me on this one!!

Show notes

Everything about W1AW is found by starting at
Update about antenna improvements here

Dave Sumner visits Montenegro

Dave Sumner, K1ZZ is the CEO, Executive Vice President, and Secretary (whew!) of the American Radio Relay League. Today I visited ARRL headquarters in Newington, CT, and had a talk with Dave about his recent trip to the new DXCC entity of Montenegro (which used to be part of Serbia). Sounded like he and his wife Linda, KA1ZD, had a wonderful time! We also talked about how he became a ham, and what he has done in the 40+ years since then.

Show notes

ARRL is at
Dave's bio is
Montenegro story is

Hello, Radio!

I recently visited ARRL headquarters, and I spoke with Allen Pitts, W1AGP. Allen is the League's Media and Public Relations Manager, and is the driving force for the new Hello campaign (see show notes below). This is the ARRL's first coordinated program of its kind ever, and is designed to get new people into the hobby, both young and old. Bonus: the PSA is appended to the end of this podcast!

Show notes

ARRL is at
Allen's bio is at
The "Hello" page is