At NARC we cater for a wide variety of interests within the hobby of Amateur Radio and our membership ranges from complete beginners to those experienced in operating and building electronic equipment.
Beginners have the opportunity to participate in courses run by NARC for all three licence levels. The Social aspect of the club is thriving with family events such as Radio by the Seaside and Radio Active weekend, NARC also operates in various contests and in the last two years we have won the RSGB Club Championships on 80m.
We have a comprehensive club programme running throughout the year, the complete list can be seen on the diary page. We also try to cater for youngsters with our "Bright Sparks" evenings when we dedicate an evening to assist the younger members in construction and operating techniques. We offer club trips and also run the annual Barford Radio Rally which falls on July 3rd 2016
We have a shack at NARC which has HF, 6M , 2M and 70cm along with laptop for data modes and CW on HF along with D-STAR on 70cm the shack is open on informal evenings. We also have a comprehensive loan system available to members including TX/RX, Test Equipment and a library. We run nets on GB3NB on a Monday evening and HF nets with our Twinned Club in Koblenz.
So take look around and we look forward to seeing you at the club one evening.
Mark G0LGJ, Sonny 2E0SYW, Kevin M0UJD, Jim G3YLA, Nev M0NFY, Tammy M3PLU and I put on a display of amateur radio at the Norwich Science Festival last Sunday. We showed ATV, battery-less wire-less, Digital Amateur Television, Slow Scan from the ISS, APRS and D Star all from the old Fire Station next to the Forum and had a steady stream of visitors all day. Thanks and well done to the great team!
Last week was characterised by low sunspot activity, but very unsettled geomagnetic conditions. The solar flux index was in the mid to high 70s, but
the K index was five or six for days on end, and even peaked at seven.
This was high enough for automatic visible aurora e-mail warnings to be sent out by Lancaster University.
The noon Chilton Digisonde plot from Harwell suggested that only 20 metres would be open, with the higher bands closed.
These poor conditions were caused by a massive coronal hole on the sun. This hole is recurring and brought the same conditions 27 days ago. Rest assured, we can probably expect a repeat performance again around November 22nd.
With regards to LF/MF propagation, the Dst index was depressed to -80nT on the 25th but is rising slowly.
It would seem from reports that LF/MF propagation on paths over 2,000km has suffered but not as much as might be expected. It seems that though the solar wind velocity had increased, the plasma density is low. This suggests there may be lower levels of electron precipitation and a faster recovery of conditions than would be expected after a coronal mass ejection.
Next week looks set to continue with the poor geomagnetic conditions. NOAA suggests the K index will remain at around five until a much-needed respite beginning around November 2nd.
VHF and up
Most of this week will be dominated by high pressure and this is likely to continue to provide slightly-enhanced Tropo opportunities for many areas, although like last week, the better conditions will be when there is moist air near the surface, which quite often means those typical foggy autumnal nights and mornings.
The longer range models do, unfortunately, suggest that the high weakens and is replaced by low pressure in the second half of the week, so it won’t last forever.
As for operating tips, it’s simple; don’t restrict yourself to FM and repeaters, and do remember to try the other modes on VHF/UHF because SSB and CW can produce surprising results and there’s plenty of space down there.
For meteor scatter enthusiasts, we are now approaching the peak of the Taurids meteor shower, a diffuse shower that lasts from late September until late November.
Don’t get too excited though, as the meteor rate is low. It does though, have a reputation for some fireballs. Look for a peak overnight around November 4th and 5th.
The Moon is close to the Sun today so noise will be high, especially on the low bands with wider antenna beam widths. Combined with a low declination and high losses at apogee on Monday it’s a week for EME system maintenance only.
Some of you asked me to publicise a programme on Channel 5 called Nuisance Neighbours where a neighbour fears the Hams 30 foot mast is damaging their health. Its Episode 8 and you can Catch up with it here:
73, David G7URP
I thought long and hard and discussed with friends before I wrote this piece as I don't want anyone to think I am trying to make any political point - I promise I am not. But if you are thinking about buying a new radio, or indeed any other major piece of equipment which is imported, you may find this useful....
In my professional life I buy quite a lot electronic components and although my company assembles everything here in the UK, 99% of the components used in them are manufactured abroad. I have been in business for over 35 years but I don't recall ever seeing anything quite like the market I am seeing now, where prices of imported parts have been increasing almost daily and quotations I am given are only valid for a few days or even just 24 hours, not the 30-60 days they always used to be. You can also see this with the main component suppliers who used to offer printed catalogues with prices on the page but who now can and do change their prices daily.
So whats this got to do with amateur radio? Well like my electronic components most radio equipment is now made overseas and I just know that when stocks in the UK are renewed the importers will have to pay a lot more because of the £/Euro/$ relationship and so unless the manufacturer decides to reduce their prices I feel sure that the 10-20% increase I see in my working life will just have to be passed on. In fact my company is going to have to raise most of our prices next month for the first time in 4 years.
So my sincere advice, if you have been thinking about buying a new piece of radio gear or almost other imported piece of equipment in the near future I would buy it now and not in a few months or even weeks time as I feel certain prices will have to rise - indeed a friend told me last night that some radio gear has already started going up since Hamfest just a few weeks ago.
Again may I emphasise I offer this without any political motive because exchange rates had already started to move earlier in the year and regardless of Europe we live in a global economy, but they have just kept going up and once those warehouses receive their next deliveries...
I hope this is helpful.
73, David G7URP
Tonight our very own Jim Bacon G3YLA with his cryptically named WX2..... Is it Weather 2, or maybe whether too....?
I guess we will all just have to go and find out. As usual we meet at CNS 6th form common room and Jims talk starts straight after notices at 19.45.
I will also be accepting radio course applications for our Advance course which starts next month - email me if you would like a form.
73, David G7URP
It's the biggie! It's the CQWW SSB event. Now, everybody can operate SSB, no excuses for not getting on somewhere and boosting your totals, bandslots, or even choosing a suitable category where you might stand a chance of winning something, a certificate, or even a trophy! It's not impossible! Don't mix it with the likes of K3LR, W3LPL, who are major players, or even M6T in the UK, also a big station. Pick something like "Single-band 10m Rookie or QRP" Read the rules and various different sections and you might find a niche there which won't occupy too much effort or time!
CQ Worldwide DX Contest, SSB: 0000Z, Oct 29 to 2400Z, Oct 30
Bands: 160, 80, 40, 20, 15, 10m
Classes: Single Op All Band (QRP/Low/High)(Option: Classic/Rookie)
Single Op Single Band (QRP/Low/High)
Single Op Assisted All Band (QRP/Low/High)
Single Op Assisted Single Band (QRP/Low/High)
Max power: HP: 1500 watts
LP: 100 watts
QRP: 5 watts
Exchange: RS + CQ Zone No.
Work stations: Once per band
QSO Points: 0 points per QSO with same country (counts as mult)
1 point per QSO with different country same continent
2 points per QSO with different country same continent (NA)
3 points per QSO with different continent
Multipliers: Each CQ zone once per band
Each country once per band
Score Calculation: Total score = total QSO points x total mults
Submit logs by: 2359Z November 4, 2016
E-mail logs to: ssb[at]cqww[dot]com
Upload log at: http://www.cqww.com/logcheck/
Web-to-Cabrillo form: http://www.b4h.net/cabforms/cqwwssb_cab.php
Mail logs to: CQ WW DX Contest
New Carlisle, OH 45344
Find rules at: http://www.cqww.com/rules.htm
Just to prove my point about winning something, I received this from Keith M0DZB. He proves what I have been saying and going for something obscure could gain you a very nice piece of wall-paper. This is what he says:
"Just to back up your latest piece about contest certificates... I have 1st place England, SSB QRP, single operator, unassisted category certificates for 2010 Scandinavian Activity Contest (20 m EFHWA and FT 817) 2013 ARRL 10 Meter Contest and 2014 CQWW SSB 10m single band ( both 10 m ladder line Slim Jim and FT 817) All achieved by S&P and plenty of patience - I'm also convinced that decent audio from my Heil HC5 Proset makes a difference. Having also acquired an FT 450D, I'm enjoying the narrower DSP filtering (the FT817 is fitted with the optional 2.4k SSB filter but I really like the narrowest SSB filter on the 450 during contests) but still tend to run low power although I did run 60 - 100w on 40m during the night for SSB CQWW WPX earlier this year as despite intending to submit a QRP entry, it was less than successful until I ran about 50w!
So, it's not all about 200ft towers and big linears! They do help though with the multi-multi 48 hour crews like K3LR. One of NARC members will be operating from K3LR and that is Mark M0DXR, so he will be looking for NARC members! Operating from M6T will be Andy M0NKR and he will be looking out for you too!
Six Metre UKAC
This took place on Tuesday evening and there were several locals taking part. Those I know of:
G3LDI, M0NKR, G3YLA, G4DYC, with G3MPN and G3VZT just handing out a few points. I am sure there are lots of other locals with 6 metre capability who could take part in this short contest and help NARC up the table? Give it a go, you won't work ZL or VK, but just working the locals will help.
I managed to work G, GW, GI, PA, ON, and in the last part of the contest TF3ML, who was 20db over S-9.
No news from John, G8VPE, I do hope all is well there.
Don't forget the contest net on Friday evenings, 145.250 at 2000 local time.
73 and enjoy your contesting de Roger, G3LDI
|Lottery funding enabled NARC to purchase direction finding equipment for training, competitions and as a fun family introduction to amateur radio|
Any licensed amateur can run and take part in the net - everyone welcome!
The Beginners net is now taking a break but will return afer our next Foundation course in the Autumn.
GB3NB is a 2 metre repeater which you can hear on 145.625MHz and transmit to on 145.025MHz.
You can find out more about many of the Norfolk repeaters from http://gb3nb.org.uk/wp/
The club meets virtually every Wednesday throughout the year in the sixth form centre of the City of Norwich School, Eaton Road, Norwich, NR4 6PP from 1900-2200.
We welcome anyone of any age, gender or ability and who enjoys experimenting with radio and electronics to come and meet us and see what we do in our hobby.
Please see above ONLINE tab for details of the club programme and below this piece for contacts of club officials.