Sparks from the Spa Newsletter – November 2022

Hello all,

I hope everyone is doing well.   I also hope you got a chance to get out and see the leaves changing color this fall.  N2EKQ and I got out a couple of times, and it was much nicer than we expected.  All I heard on the news was that the colors were going to be muted due to the weather during the summer.  I don’t think that was the case.

I also hope some of you got on the air last Saturday to work in the NYS QSO party.  I got on and had fun.  I didn’t beat anyone I’m sure, but the 30 or so SSB contacts I made were quite a nice change of pace for me, you usually find me on FT8,  Thanks Brian, NJ1F for letting us know about the party.

Attached is the November Sparks from the Spa Newsletter.  I hope you enjoy it.

I have set up the Zoom meeting for the November 14 meeting, (6:30 PM board, 7:00 PM General meeting).  Below is the Zoom invite, and I will be sending that out again later, closer to the meeting, along with the program information.

Jim KG2H

Simulated Emergency Test 2022

October 1st is the date for this year’s Simulated Emergency Test.  As has been customary, the Saratoga County ARES will be meeting on the 147.24 repeater at 9 am to begin the event.  Any and all amateurs are welcome to join in, ARES, RACES, or Club membership is not required.

This year’s event will include voice messaging, digital messaging and APRS tracking.

Currently we need radio communicators and liaison officers for the event.

Equipment required

  • 2M HT, Mobile or Base station
  • ICS-213 forms
  • Smartphone, Tablet or Computer with internet access
  • Binoculars(optional)
  • GO-Kit(optional)

Any questions may be referred to KC2YLM, Phil (phil.weissman@gmail.com)

Hope to hear you on the air!
Fred – W2EMS

Sparks from the Spa Newsletter – September 2022

Hi all,

Summer is over.  Thankfully, the weather is turning cooler, and it’s time to repair the antennas before the snow falls.

I’ve gotten back behind the keyboard, and finally produced the latest Sparks from the Spa Newsletter.  There’s some important information in there for the October / November time-frame.

If you have any problems, please let me know, and I can forward the actual newsletter file to you.

Jim KG2H

Mohawk Towpath Byway Duathlon – October 16, 2022

The annual Mohawk Towpath Byway Duathlon is scheduled for Sunday, October 16th.

We need a few radio operators and other support folks to ensure a successful event.  I’ve attached the information about the event but please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.  We will be working with a couple of the area Amateur Radio clubs and the local CERT volunteers to help staff the event. 

Thanks
Fred – W2EMS
505-3733

Hamfest 2022 – September 11

Saratoga County Amateur Radio Association
presents our 36th annual

HAMFEST 2022

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 11th; Gates open at 7:00 am

Saratoga County Fair Grounds, 162 Prospect St, Ballston Spa, NY 12020

Only $10.00 per person includes door prize drawing, plus 8’x8′ “tailgate” space.

  • NEW and USED gear and accessories to haggle over
  • VE exam to be held at 8:30 am (off site)
    • Cornell Co-Op Ext. (Solar Bldg)
      50 W. High St / Rt 67 west
      Ballston Spa, NY 12020
  • Plenty of room to display your sale items
  • Fox-hunt on the fairground property
  • Under-cover tables available for $10 each
  • Delicious Food served all day

Directions

  • I-87 to Exit 12
  • West on Rt 67 to Ballston Spa
  • At intersection of Rts 50 & 67, follow 50 North; look for HAMFEST signs
  • In village, turn left at Citgo station on Prospect Street; up hill on left

Talk-In

  • K2DLL Repeater System
  • 147.000 Mhz, PL 91.5 Hz or
  • 147.240 Mhz, PL 91.5 Hz

GPS Coordinates

43.007438° N
-73.855821° W

For information or reservations contact: Jim Polewczak – KG2H
231 Northline Road, Ballston Spa, NY 12020. Email: kg2h@arrl.net
Phone: 518-703-9558


If you would like to help us out by distributing some flyers, a PDF document of Saratoga County Amateur Radio Association HAMFEST 2022 the is available. Please tell your friends and post where appropriate. Thank you for your assistance!

Sparks from the Spa Newsletter – June 2022

Hello all,

It’s June.  Here are a couple of things to pass along.

  1. Here is the the June 22 issue of the Sparks from the Spa Newsletter. If anyone has a problem with downloading it, please let me know at KG2H@arrl.net and I will email you a full copy.
  2. It’s the June meeting this Monday, June 13.  That means 2 things.  First it’s the annual business meeting where we elect officers for the upcoming year.  If you are interested in becoming an officer or general  board member, please drop an email to one of the existing officers, listed on the back page of the newsletter.  Second,  just a reminder that we take a meeting break in July and August so there are no physical meetings planned.  This month’s meeting will be held starting at 6:30 PM with a board meeting, followed by the general meeting starting around 7:00 PM.  Due to the speaker, (see the next item) we will be holding a hybrid meeting, both in person and via ZOOM.    The physical meeting will be at the Fire Training Center in Ballston Spa, 6012 County Farm Road, right behind the Animal Shelter building.
  3. The meeting speaker will be Joe Carcia, NJ1Q who is an ARRL Staffer.  He will lead us on a guided tour of the ARRL facility.  Shortly before that we will hold the annual elections, and Club  status report.

Please be sure to join us.

Jim KG2H

Sparks from the Spa Newsletter – April 2022

Hello All,

I hope everyone is doing well.

First item of interest is that the April issue of the Sparks from the Spa Newsletter is available.

Second, is the information for the April Club meeting, which will be held in person.  It will be at our usual location, the Saratoga County Fire Training Center.  It is located at the Saratoga County facility on County Farm Rd. If you need an address for your GPS, try 6012 County Farm Rd, Ballston Spa.  The actual training center is located behind the animal shelter building.

The business meeting will start at 6:30 PM, and the general meeting will start at 7:00 PM.  The speakers for the evening will be Brian Szewczyk NJ1F, and Jim Polewczak KG2H.  We will be examining and comparing 2 very popular computer logging systems, N1MM+ and N3FJP Amateur Contact Log.  It should be an interesting meeting.  I hope to see you there.

Jim KG2H

Sparks from the Spa Newsletter – March 2022

Hello all,

Here is the March issue of Sparks from the Spa Newsletter.

Just a reminder that the monthly meeting for March is scheduled for Saturday, March 19, at 8:00 AM.  It is our annual Swapfest which is being held at the Cooperative Extension Building located at 50 West High Street in Ballston Spa.  This has been on hiatus for the last 2 years because of you know what!  There is no admission charge.  The Swapfest will close at 11:00 AM so we can set up for the exam session to be held at noon.  More information is in the newsletter and this post about the Swapfest details.

I hope to see you there.

Jim KG2H

2022 Swapfest – March 19

[graphic of assorted ham gear in box]Hi all.

Just a simple reminder about our March meeting.

I am pleased to announce that we will be having our traditional March Swapfest to be held in person (!!) for the first time after the last 2 years in COVID isolation. We will be holding it on Saturday, March 19 at its usual location in the Cornell Cooperative Extension Building at 50 West High Street in Ballston Spa The doors will officially open at 8:00 AM so come on out and get an eyeball QSO with your fellow hams. If you have some items you wish to give a give a new home to, bring them along also. Tables will be available until they’re all used up. We will have to close down the swapfest at 11:00 AM so that we can ready the room for a VE Test session at Noon.

If you are going to take a test session for either a new or upgraded ham license, here are a few things you MUST bring along:

  • A copy of your current FCC license. We need to attach the license copy to the paperwork when you upgrade. It will have your FRN number which you need to have to fill out Form 605. If you don’t have a copy of your license you can visit https://www.fcc.gov/wireless/universal-licensing-system to obtain one.
  • If you are unlicensed, the FCC requires that you have a FRN. You can obtain a FRN in just a few minutes before the exam session by visiting FCC FRN Registration. You simply apply for the FRN on line (you will receive it immediately), and you will have it with you when you come to the test session.
  • You need an email address to enter on the FCC form 605. This is the address that the FCC will use to communicate with you.
  • Another form of ID, a driver’s license is great, or any other form of ID. If you don’t have a driver’s license, (perhaps you are too young for the DMV) the ARRL suggests something as simple as a library card, or even a piece of mail addressed to you at your residence.
  • A pen and pencil (with a good eraser). The pen is for filling out the FCC form 605, and the pencil is to fill out the bubble answer sheet.
  • The proper testing fee. Currently it is $15.
  • Your WITS. It is not a hard exam, so don’t get too anxious about it.

Please arrive at least 15 minutes before the exam start time in order to fill out the paperwork, and for the VE’s (Volunteer Examiners) to review it.

Another thing to bear in mind, is that for many of the testing sessions, the VE team will have alternate versions of the various exam elements available for you to try a retake of the exam. If you do desire to take an alternate version, we must you charge you an additional testing fee.

If you DO NOT NEED to take any alternate versions, you may take the next higher level of exam for NO additional costs. For example, if you take and pass the Technician exam, you may take the General exam if you so desire, and there will be no additional fees. I have witnessed a few people who have come into the session unlicensed, and walk away with the Extra Class license.

Jim KG2H