Thursday, July 25, 2019

International Lighthouse Lightship Weekend - August 17-18, 2019

FROM THE AUGUST 2019 RARA RAG newsletter:

2019 International Lighthouse
Lightship Weekend
by David Timmons, W2DST

Have you ever operated outdoors at a historic site? Have you ever seen the Port
of Rochester from the top of a 197 year old lighthouse? You can do both and
more by joining us for the 2019 International Lighthouse Lightship Weekend
(ILLW) at the Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse on Lake Ave. in Rochester's historic Charlotte neighborhood. This year the event is on August 17 & 18 and we will be operating (at least) 2 stations using special event call sign K2R from 11 am to 5 pm both days. Come help us operate and talk to lighthouse visitors about amateur radio. Yes, we do hang our antennas from the lighthouse tower!

Friday, July 5, 2019

Possible new threat to Amateur Radio spectrum

Over the last few weeks there have been quite a few news items and on-line discussions brewing over a possible threat to Amateur Radio 2M spectrum allocation. More specifically, a new proposal that will be advanced to the ITU World Radio Communication Conference 2023. It originates with French spectrum regulators and is reported to be at the behest of the Paris-based multinational defense contractor Thales. The concern is the proposed relegation of amateur radio to secondary status of the widely used two-meter band (144 MHz) to permit its usage by aircraft.

All Amateur Radio enthusiasts should have concern over these proposals as the connected world pushes to gain more spectrum for 100's of new types of mobile communications devices.

...and to quote from
"Why should this bother you? If you are a radio amateur it should be a grave concern that a band which has provided the “glue” for so many vital services over many decades might come under threat, and if you are not a radio amateur it should concern you that a commercial defense contractor in one country can so easily set in motion the degradation of a globally open resource governed by international treaties penned in your grandparents’ time. Amateur radio is a different regulatory being from the licence-free spectrum that we now depend upon for so many things, but the principle of it being a free resource to all its users remains the same. If you have an interest in retaining the spectrum you use wherever on the dial it may lie, we suggest you support your national amateur radio organisation in opposing this measure".

Read more here:

Monday, July 1, 2019

It's been a great run!

 Back on May 13th 2012, CNY Hams had the opportunity to become part of a 6 meter repeater experiment. That was the day the KD2SL 53.67 mhz repeater came on the air with a unique antenna! The former Television Channel 3 Turnstile antenna (a casualty of the analog TV shutoff in 2009) had come back to life supporting amateur radio in Upstate NY. It was an interesting time on 6 meters as many of us played "can you hear me now" from various locations around CNY.

 Things changed this past week, (June 27th, 2019), the 53.67 repeater was switched from the “Batwing” Turnstile TV antenna to a lower communications antenna mounted at approximately 700’. The change was necessitated by the FCC mandated television frequency repack (read more about the repack here:  ) which is driving major changes to TV transmitters and antennas all over the country.