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Thursday, June 26, 2014

N5AT Field Day antenna setup

- 20 meter beam on a 60' tower trailer

- 204' G5RV center suspended on a 70' pole with shorter +20' poles supporting the ends

- 1300' horizontal delta loop wire antenna will be supported by the same 70' pole at a lower point, 20’ at 2 trees at other corners

- 2300' horizontal loop wire antenna will be suspended from trees and 8’-12’ poles

- 40m half wave NVIS dipole

- 80m half wave NVIS dipole

- Alpha Antenna Promaster Sr

- Alpha Antenna Small Magnetic Loop

- 2m VHF antenna on pole

Monday, June 23, 2014

Modes used during Field Day

So which communication modes will our clubs feature during Field Day 2014?

Voice, CW, PSK31, MT63-500L, ALE, ALE AMD, APRS, WeFax.

Just follow the links for more info!

APRS for Field Day?

So you are interested to make 10 quick points on Field Day? Have you sent NTS style messages? Bored of relaying Radiograms by voice and can't find anyone to accept one? NBEMS too easy for you, since it's such a great and easy and free software suite?

Then why don't you send a few APRS messages, routing them to email addresses and write them as I've featured in a prior blog entry (see ALE AMD NTS messages)?

For example:

But watch you message length, APRS Email supports 67 characters, less than ALE AMD!

Nonetheless, 10 messages at 10 points each - nice!

Great EmComm training and great for points too ;)

Ionosonde survey

Look at the great ionosonde survey webpage that Van AE5CC put together:

...and it works really nice with the swiping! Thanks for sending me this Van!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

ARRL Field Day 2014 NTS style messages via ALE AMD

I am the Field Day Incident Commander for N5AT and one of our goals is to get the Bonus points for “NTS style messages”.

I verified with the ARRL and it is not the mode of transmission that is of interest (it must however leave the site via radio RF), it is the message format (i.e. NTS radiogram) that is the requirement.

Thus, please don’t be surprised when you receive an ALE AMD message like the following during Field Day:


= approx. 59 characters, which is under the 90 character limit for AMD messages. Great! (Message size limit verified here: )

Maybe the above will inspire some other HAMs to also demo ALE and HFLink to their fellow HAMs during Field Day?! You may of course also choose voice, CW, NBEMS, APRS to send your Radiogram, but AMD makes it so slick… :)

vy 73 de Marcus NX5MK
Apparare Scientior Paratus Communicare

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Getting into shape

Had the chance to go with family today to the Cedar Falls in Petit Jean State Park
which is a 2 mile hike from Mather Lodge, considered moderate to strenuous. Had my entire /PM gear with me, including reserve battery, charge controller, mini-chair, water, CW straight key, you name it. Hefty package all in all... The waterfall was great, we had a great hike, was warm to hot and humid. Sure sweated a lot, but had great fun hiking. Did not operate at all, since I would have had to string up a 40m antenna and today was really reserved for family. But - was a great RaDAR exercise to get into shape for the contests.
More details on my pack to follow another day.

ARRL Field Day 2014 announcement

Stay tuned for more updates...

- Public Announcement for immediate release -

The Arkansas Radio Emergency Services (A.R.E.S.) Club, The Central Arkansas UHF (CAUHF) Club and the Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System Ham Radio (CAVHS) Club have once again joined forces for this year's ARRL Amateur Radio Field Day @ the VA Hospital.

We three Little Rock Amateur Radio Clubs will once again be participating in the annual ARRL Field Day event the weekend of June 28-29 on the Historic Ft. Roots Parade Ground, Little Rock, Arkansas using the call sign N5AT.

We will be operating with emergency power and alternate power, erecting a 20m beam antenna, wire antennas and a magnetic loop antenna. There will again be a dedicated SSB station, a dedicated digital station, a digital&voice GOTA station and a VHF station. Digital operations will be CW (straight key) and sound card based modes, including Automatic Link Establishment (ALE AMD).

The AHDNN net will be conducted from this site between 1600h and 1700h CDT, 7.070 mhz 1000Hz +/-, MT63-500L.
Technician Class Licensees - SPECIAL NOTICE: Please check-in with CW on Center Frequency, we are listening out for you! Net will be conducted using the NBEMS software suite with FLDIGI and FLMSG to facilitate section "7.3.6. Message Handling” of the ARRL Field Day 2014 Rules. NBEMS nets in adjoining states have planned to stand by.

We have decided to organize the event per the NIMS / ICS model, as to increase our knowledge and experience with it, making use of and learning about the AUXFOG. We will have an Educational Activity and hope that the Little Rock Boy Scouts will be able to join us!

Irrespective of the above, our focus is - as always - on the great cameraderie between the clubs and it’s members, where everyone is invited and welcome to visit and operate.

Although we have chosen to follow the ARRL Field Day 2014 Rules Objective closely ("To work as many stations as possible on any and all amateur bands…” and to "developing skills to meet the challenges of emergency preparedness as well as to acquaint the general public with the capabilities of Amateur Radio.”), we will nonetheless approach it as we always have, with a degree of leisure appropriate for the searing heat at that time of year!

If you have time, come join us!

Directions to the park are here: Google Maps directions and please see the map at the bottom of this post, we will be located on the Parade Ground.

Historical background:

We all look forward to meeting you, be it on air or in person!

Wishing all a most enjoyable and especially safe Field Day 2014,

73 de Marcus NX5MK

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