What is Amateur Radio?

This week is Interactive where you can join NARC Live by video and sound as well as in the usual ways of watching on Facebook or BATC.


Before Wednesday please can you let us have topics we can discuss and debate, whether they be questions or comments about radio or something completely different. This is as close to a real meeting as we can get so please join us if you can either by the Goto meeting video (see below) or in the usual way by Facebook or BATC where you will be able to watch as well as comment and ask questions as always.


As before Tammy and I will be on hand all of the time to informally chair the get together, and Sonny M0SYW will be managing the video sharing and helping people get set up so please be thinking of things you want to know or discuss and either join us live over video or send them in advance to us at the usual address: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   Its your club, your show!


To join us by video you will need to use the following link - you will be able to join from 19.00 on Wednesday and Sonny will be there to help test your camera, sound and connecction. Goto meeting will work on many platforms including tablets, but generally main PC or Macs are best as you will be able to see all partipants instead of just a few, but you can also use an iPad etc to watch the full programme which will also be streamed as usual on FaceBook and BATC so you can watch from there if you prefer.


To take part by video:

NARC Live Interactive! 
Wed, Nov 25, 2020 7:00 PM  (GMT) 

Please join the meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone.


Access code:        180-083-997


If you have not used goto meeting before, this is a 3:30 Minute video on how to use the software. https://youtu.be/95dRdnMMgbQ

New to GoToMeeting?  Get the app now and be ready when your first meeting starts:

And you can also join us as usual in addition to or instead of video in the traditional way:



Of course we still want your news, views and pictures as usual please to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


If you do not want to join us by video then please join us at 7.30pm as usual on either Facebook:


or British Amateur Television Club:



Join the meeting by video as well as Facebook and BATC:





Please email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your interesting titbits …


I have been using PSK reporter quite a bit to see how far my CW CQs were getting. It really is a brilliant tool and really intuitive as many of you will know. But for the uninitiated even though its called PSK reporter you can set filters and just see CW or SSB or FT8 etc reports from far afield in a very well presented layout. I had just been keying with Tim G0OOD just up the road on 20 meters.( He was very patient with me and my broken Morse ! thanks Tim) When I checked PSK Reporter I found I was heard in New York. Pretty good going from my 20m vertical and 100 watts. That got me to wondering about RBN (reverse beacon network) and its connection with PSK reporter. I had been blindly using RBN for a few years but was curious as to when it was first developed and why ? All I knew was a user interface called TELNET RBN with lots of useful CALL SIGNS streaming in ready to be pounced on ! . Some Googling took me to “ www.reversebeacon.net ” web site where its history under “about” menu can be found.. Something called Skimmer software to monitor the bands , was released in 2008 primarily as a DXing tool to spot CQs and update the RBN list. However contesters saw it as a very useful tool to increase their scores. Telnet capability was later added enabling fast real time update of spots streaming to our computers. So now when I log into RBN and see that stream of data I can appreciate all the time and trouble that has gone into its design.. TAKE A LOOK at
www.reversebeacon.net select “main” enter your call sign and see where you have been spotted , your SNR and speed etc. It’s a great tool for testing and comparing antenna adjustments or better still seeing how the “big boys” signals in contests stack up against yours ! Please take a few minutes out and let us know how you got on.
AND I now know where PSK reporter gets it information from. I now need to find out why they use SNR and not a S meter reading ! Do you know ? …


Not much to add this week but some European stations have some interesting call signs ~:

OT5ALIVE Willfried , learning morse abt 14 WPM but very nice morse. From their QRZ page “Unfortunately due to the covid pandemic we had to skip both contests this year, but we wanted to keep our call sign OT5A alive, and want to spread a positive message so that's why we decided to ask the for the callsign OT5Alive.”

OH1VR/60 I couldn’t figure out the 60, some anniversary from 1960 ?

OL700CO A special event station for the first written mention of city Dobruska.

PT8DX A neat call sign worked on 40 meters at 11am mid November

Plus many more.
If you find an interesting call sign email me for the next (B)log
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


HF News

Last week was not bad for HF propagation, but probably not as good as the previous one. The solar flux index remained in the mid-to-high 70s, but the upside was that we had quiet geomagnetic conditions, which helped settle the ionosphere.

The result was that maximum usable frequencies over 3,000km remained quite high, with 12 metres often being open. There was even the occasional long-distance opening on 10 metres.

HF highlights this week included the 7Q7RU Russian Robinson Club DXpedition to Malawi, which has been worked from the UK on many bands including 12 metres. The DXpedition has shown how effective the FT8 fox and hounds mode can be and has given many amateurs a new entity in their log.

There have also been reports of 10m SSB contacts with Australia, especially by better-equipped stations. Let’s hope that contacts with VK become more commonplace as the solar cycle progresses.

Next week may be better as sunspot group 2783 rotates into an Earth-facing position. NOAA predicts the SFI will remain in the range 70-75, but this could easily be exceeded if sunspot 2783 becomes more active.

Unfortunately, geomagnetic conditions may not be as favourable next week due to a large coronal hole on the Sun’s surface. To recap, a coronal hole is an area of the Sun with an open, magnetic field that allows the solar wind to escape more readily into space, resulting in streams of relatively fast solar wind.

Coronal holes appear as dark areas when the Sun is photographed in extreme ultraviolet light, such as with the Solar Dynamics Observatory imagery, because they are cooler, less dense regions than the surrounding plasma.

For the latest SDO images see solarham.com.

NOAA predicts the Kp index could rise to four on Sunday 22nd November and again on the 24th and 25th. Things could then settle down with a maximum Kp index of two, just in time for the CQ Worldwide CW contest on the weekend of the 28th and 29th.

So it looks like the latter half of the week will be better for HF propagation than the first half.

VHF and up

This is often regarded as an unsettled time of year, but can occasionally bring quite settled weather, typical of high-pressure systems.

Unfortunately, there is once again no real sign of any substantial high pressure, other than the occasional brief ridge between successive lows and their fronts.

Like last week, any high pressure is likely to be closer to southern Britain, over the Continent, favouring southern England to France and Biscay for the more optimistic operators.

It's another week to look for GHz Bands rain scatter, with much variability expected in timing. It's best to follow events via the daily forecasts to find the most likely opportunities.

There have been a few out-of-season Es events on 10m and 6m in the past week, so it's never safe to assume there is only a summer season for Es. Admittedly it's not usually a great response in November, but it can and does happen! This event occurred around the peak of the Leonids meteor shower, which possibly delivered a new influx of raw material as long-lived metallic ions when they burned up upon entering the upper atmosphere.

Just one minor meteor shower this week. The November Orionids peaks on the 28th with a zenithal hourly rate of just three.

Moon declination goes positive again on Wednesday, so visibility windows will lengthen all week. With the Moon approaching apogee on Friday, path losses are at their highest. 144 MHz sky noise is low all week, but rising above 300 Kelvin from Thursday.

Morse Classes for winter 2020 are going well.

25wpm beginners CW report for 17Nov20


The gang assembled again on GB3NB on Tuesday evening at 8pm and I was joined by David M0WEL, John G4PFZ, Alex 2E0FHF, Tony G0OOR and Paul M1AFQ.

The group listened to 6 typical overs from the archive and wrestled with the details like QTH, names and rigs etc. plus all the non-typical wordage that pads out the conversation. It takes a while to get the hang of this head copy malarkey and its a slow job, so count hearing the odd word as a win at 26wpm and please keep doing it. Over time you will hear without focussing and just pick out the essential ‘nuggets’ of the conversation.

Another session next week, so hopefully you’ll have been able to listen on the bands in the meantime to keep the ‘long game’ going.

73 de Jim


Morse with Doctor Phil.

Friday evenings at 2000 local time on 145.250MHz.
The contest net is now on Fridays on 145.250MHz following on from Phil's class. This will enable those in the class - and Phil himself - to join in. Hope to see you there.
Phil's class now has FIVE new students! How pleasing that is! It is still not too late to join Phil on a Friday evening. So, really good to see some are learning the code and gaining a new mode to use on the air.I hear there is another joining this week too! ALL GOOD!

If you are interested, please email Phil and let him know. He will contact you and give you more details.
Phil's email address: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
By the way, Phil is a GOOD cop, so you will be treated kindly!


The CWOPS CWT activity periods are still as popular as ever.
The link below is to FAV22. THis is a military station on 3881.00kHz and runs at varying speeds with groups of letters, numbers, punctuation and procedural signals. It is on 24/7 so take a look It is well worth the practice.
If you look up this link in Google Chrome, it will translate into English for you.

Email me with input, queries, keys, paddles, classes and so on. Hopefully I can help or know a man that can!
73 de Roger, G3LDI GB2CW Coordinator. May the Morse be with you.


NARC Live Interactive - Next Wednesday 25th November

Next Wednesday is our monthly interactive meeting where you can join NARC Live by Video instead of Facebook or BATC (although you can still just watch on these if you wish).

But what should we discuss on our third interactive meeting - its up to you! We would love to hear your ideas about topics we can discuss, or we could have a Radio Question time?

Please let us have your wishes and ideas and email them to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


This is your club, your show...



Tammy M0TC and David G7URP


Christmas is coming...

Tammy and I are trying to put some special things together for December and would welcome contributions from you, so please let us know if you can do something we can include on NARC LIve... from playing the spoons to singing a little ditty we are sure that NARC has got talent!  Drop us a note to the email address above